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Showing content with the highest reputation on 10/29/2019 in all areas

  1. 4 points
    I will say I agree with you Johne, and leave it there.
  2. 3 points
    At the risk of stirring up more controversy, @Johne is right. Remember Christianity came from Judaism, where one drinks wine on Erev Shabbes, and the four cups of wine on Passover. 1 Timothy 3:8 (KJV) Likewise must the deacons be grave, not doubletongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre; I don't drink wine anymore since I'm no longer frum, but the Bible is clear one should not drink to excess. Timothy was commanded to drink a little wine for frequent stomach ailments. If alcohol is a sin, then Paul commanded Timothy to sin. 1 Timothy 5:23 (KJV) Drink no longer water, but use a little wine for thy stomach's sake and thine often infirmities. @Erin Cook is right that Christians probably should avoid (we're commanded to abstain from the appearance of evil), but it is not a sin to drink in moderation. Colossians 2:16 (KJV) Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: The attitude we should take is 1 Corinthians 8:13 (KJV) Wherefore, if meat make my brother to offend, I will eat no flesh while the world standeth, lest I make my brother to offend.
  3. 3 points
  4. 2 points
    Good for you, Johne! Way to go! 🤞
  5. 2 points
    I'm going to say one thing and it may flame up but it's worth remembering: Jesus drank wine.
  6. 2 points
    After having read the article Johne posted about the subject of alcohol, I'm sorry, but I could not disagree more. Not counting the aspect of medicinal purposes, to drink alcohol just for the sake of drinking it should be a subject elementary to any Christian; if we are to stay strong in the Lord, we must, I repeat, MUST avoid it. Alcohol is a sin and that's all there is to it. So many today argue that Jesus turned the water into "wine" referring to it as the alcoholic sort, but I believe that is to justify their own wrong behavior. If people are going to indulge in the drinking of alcohol and simply avoid getting drunk, one has to wonder if that's easier said than done. One might as well pick up a magazine featuring a picture of a woman in a bikini bathing suit and declare, "Oh, I feel it's alright as long as she doesn't wear any less than this." But what happens when the temptation becomes too strong? Before you know it, the pornographic habit has taken over and you're a goner. The line has to be drawn someplace, Johne. Truth is, the wine at that wedding feast was nothing more than healthy grape juice, not in the least fermented. Would Jesus purposefully give His children something that He knows is bad for them? Would He? Apparently, many Christians would rather ignore this Scripture than dig to the root of its true meaning. Perhaps now would be a good time to study it: "Who hath woe? who hath sorrow? who hath contentions? who hath babbling? who hath wounds without cause? who hath redness of eyes? They that tarry long at the wine; they that go to seek mixed wine. Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright. At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder." Proverbs 23:29-32 This issue really shouldn't be difficult for me to explain. Anybody should be able to see the negativity of indulging in strong drink.
  7. 2 points
    Duck... and cover!!! Now I've got that song in my head.
  8. 2 points
    I think Christians being depicted as actually living like civilized - not perfect - people in the midst of hedonism and other aspects of rampant immorality would be a great help to others. Living moral lives as best they can as opposed to the rampant immorality being portrayed in music, on TV and in movies would be a good and necessary change. I would read about people turning their backs on all of that.
  9. 2 points
    I don't consider the violence unnecessary - but there is violent actions in my novels. I've been in violent conflicts several times in my life, and had to have my right thumb sewn back onto my hand. Huge amount of blood loss when that happened, certainly nothing a 9 year old boy should live through. The essence of fiction is conflict. The stories that come to me usually have dangerous interactions, including physical fighting and sometimes use of weapons. I think personally to depict a physical encounter in a sterile way is like the old war movies where soldiers did a ballerina pirouette and dropped painlessly and bloodlessly dead on the battlefield. Life isn't like that, and people can be brainwashed into thinking a physical encounter is painless and bloodless. We all see these paintings of the crucifixion that are clean and sterile - it wasn't like that. No way. Even the "Passion" movie was too clean and painless. The Cross should have been dripping blood. Literally, the foot of the Cross would have been soaked. The Via Dolorosa would have had a trail of blood left through it. So physical action in my books is always depicted realistically. If you punch me in my mouth, I bleed EVERYWHERE - it's ghastly. So when I wrote the scene where the seven foot six "Goliath" outlaw fights small 5'4" Horace Schofield in a deserted western dressmaker's shop, it's bloody. Oh, absolutely. Life is not sterile. When the outlaws try to beat Abigail to a pulp, she shoots one in the carotid artery. He bleeds out running to his horse. That stuff happens in real life. I'm not having ballerina cowboys dropping painlessly with a "oh!" exclamation and a starched clean shirt. Part of what I write is I want you to see and feel the effects of violence. If people just rub their jaw after being punched, not realistic and that promotes violence. If on the other hand I show it how it really is, then you understand the courage of people who draw down deep inside and keep fighting on when they're seriously injured. So when the Bible talks of Calvary's blood shed, I'm telling you it was a lot of blood. What the Lord went through was devastating. Death is often painful and sickening. If Christian fiction shouldn't have depictions of violence and bloodshed, then we have to leave out the story of Eglon, Goliath, Abner and Asahel, the death of Jezebel, Uzzah and the ark, and many, many other violent stories in the Bible. So I guess I either have to A). stop writing B). write secular fiction, or C). try to find a way to depict Bible reading people who believe in salvation by works as Christians - which apparently is the current trend in Christian fiction.
  10. 2 points
    When THIS PRESENT DARKNESS was published, the 'bookstore' part of a Christian bookstore was a genre fiction wasteland. People talk about how women flocked to see WONDER WOMAN in 2017 or people of color flocked to see BLACK PANTHER because it was the first time they'd seen superheroes that looked like them. That's how I felt about the Peretti books. It was an important high-quality Christian genre fiction release which spoke to me. So I get that. The thing is we have a number of high profile genre fiction authors working in the mainstream who are putting out great quality work and we no longer have to stay just in CBS circles to get good fiction from a Christian worldview. Jim Butcher's stuff is really good, Timothy Zahn has been strong for decades, and Tim Powers continues to write stuff unlike anyone else in the genre. Even newcomers like Mike Duran is beginning to make waves with his paranoir stuff. So we have choices now that we didn't have 30 years ago.
  11. 2 points
    Assuming you're referring to writing fiction for Christians, this is a good and noble focus. Discovering Frank Peretti's angelic warfare novels was a huge epiphany for me and it showed me we could write genre fiction for Christians. With that said, it's not my focus at this time. I have the burning feeling that we have a limited window of grace to use story to reach people. That's what I'm working on and will likely be working on for the remainder of my writing life.
  12. 2 points
  13. 2 points
    I think there is definitely a place for writing about the gritty realities of life while still portraying the hope and victory that Jesus gives. Those stories need to be told as well. I believe that it can be done without wallowing in filth or glorifying evil and pain or catering to all the most base parts of human nature.
  14. 2 points
  15. 2 points
    I used to. Which is why I never finished a book. Participating in NaNoWriMo is what helped me finally break out of that habit and realise that I needed to forge forward and complete the first draft of a book before going back to improve it. Getting the first draft down without looking back also silences that inner critic that makes you question the quality of what you've written. That inner critic does have a vital job to do, but not in the first draft. Let him go to town on your second, third, fourth or whatever drafts. Not on the first.
  16. 2 points
    Well, I haven't read much so I can't say for sure... But from your other comments, you don't strike me as a guy who'd have a ton of unnecessary violence.
  17. 2 points
  18. 2 points
    (Anticipating a tangent about drinking and the scriptures.) https://www.crosswalk.com/faith/spiritual-life/what-does-the-bible-say-about-alcohol-1120038.html
  19. 2 points
    I agree that you don't expect to see drinking in Christian fiction but, to be clear, it isn't a Biblical prohibition as much as a post-scriptural tradition in some communities (check local listings). (As I read it, the Biblical position isn't tee-totaling abstention but self-control and a studious avoidance of drunkenness.)
  20. 2 points
    But alcohol is alcohol, so I have to kindly disagree with Mr Terry; alcohol has no place in the life of a Christian.
  21. 2 points
    You'd change your mind after you read some of my books.
  22. 1 point
    Our own Katie Weiland post today gives me some ideas on how to ask for Beta reader feedback. https://www.helpingwritersbecomeauthors.com/how-to-know-which-parts-of-your-story-readers-will-like-best-it-isnt-always-what-you-think/
  23. 1 point
    I respect your opinion but I don't see this in scripture. What I see is drunkenness is sin. Agreed! I I draw the line at what the scripture actually says. I would agree that abuse of alcohol is a sin, and a clear one. But it seems equally clear that there are occasions where the Bible describes wine as a gift from God that can make life more enjoyable. (Psalm 104:14, 15; Ecclesiastes 3:13; 9:7). And as we have seen, Paul prescribed a little wine to Timothy for medicinal purposes. I think the emphasis there is sensible. Furthermore, In Paul's instructions about the escalating responsibilities for Deacons he says they shouldn't drink much wine and pastors shouldn't drink any wine. I'm closer personally to the former than the latter. In Proverbs 23:20f Solomon wrote "Do not join those who drink too much wine or gorge themselves on meat, for drunkards and gluttons become poor, and drowsiness clothes them in rags." There are entire posts which lay this out pretty clearly: I can tell you this much - my grandfather died, drunk, face down in a gutter, His alcoholism destroyed his family, and I knew at an early age that alcohol abuse was a risk factor in my side of the family. With that said, where I live drinking is less frowned upon - and indeed more cultural accepted - than in other parts of the country. I've had a drink here or there with my meal since I was of age and I've never been drunk once. Linda's folks were staunch Southern Baptists and wouldn't patronize restaurants in wet counties. After we'd been married for ten years we visited her folks at their place in New Mexico. While there Linda's brothers and sister enjoyed an after-dinner beverage out on the deck and we were astonished. They never would have allowed that before but something dramatic had obviously changed. We asked about it and they said her folks had had an epiphany and had relaxed their policy. They wouldn't allow beverages in the house but outside was fine and nobody abused the relaxed rules. We were astonished and asked what had happened. They said it actually was thanks to us and we looked at each other, very confused. So they told us the story. When we'd married in 1985 we'd had a party for the rehearsal dinner which included Pizza Hut priazo (a covered pizza) and some bottles of stuff. We all had a good time, retired at a reasonable hour, and the wedding the following day was the best day of my life. Apparently Linda's folks saw our friends drinking without getting drunk, behaving like normal celebrating Christians, and they were astonished. They were initially incensed that we allowed spirits at our rehearsal dinner and watched everyone VERY carefully. However, when my Christian friends acted responsibly, they were each convicted in their spirit and they prayed together about what they'd just seen. They decided together that what they'd each experienced individually was valid and they repented of their extra strong position. And so the others were allowed to have an adult beverage out on the deck and everything was at peace. Upon hearing this Linda and I looked at each and then I said "I don't know how to break this to you but that wasn't wine, it was sparkling grape juice. It was non-alcoholic." A deathly quiet came over the scene and then they hissed "You keep that to yourselves!" And then we all laughed and laughed. I mention all that to say this - even when my friends and I have an occasional adult beverage we act in precisely the same fashion. I drink very occasionally and never really have more than a drink in an evening. I've been so careful for so long it's just not something I wrestle with. (Same with my eyes, by the way. My wife knows I guard my eyes whether she's in my presence or not. My computer is in the dining room and she's free to check my browser history at any time. My wife isn't concerned about drink or women, she's concerned with Apple, but that's another story for another day.)
  24. 1 point
    I'll just bet the parts my readers will like will be the one part I always thought was weak but never got around to editing
  25. 1 point
    Okay! Based upon my research and the top selling Christian books, here's the formula to make millions. Ready? Buy every book on "The power of positive thinking" By Norman Vincent Peale and restate everything in it over and over again. This is method number one. If you're interested in doing additional research, tie in "Think and grow rich" by Napoleon Hill. Not Christian books? Tie in one or two Bible verses into it, and it will sell in the millions. Still not Christian, but it'll be very successful. Plunder the successful New Age books at the thrift store and re-write it using Christian language. Again, you'll sell millions. This is the most successful method, and the publisher will beg you to write devotionals based upon it. Try reading books by people who channel spirits, and find ways to market that under the name "Christian". Surprised nobody has handled the "Seth" series yet. Read "the Gospel according to Jesus" by John MacArthur - then write a tell all book about your partying life that is the opposite of everything MacArthur wrote. Publishers will love it. You'll end up part of a bidding war, and the CEO of your publishing company will lament why your book was the only successful Christian book of the last ten years. Tie in Hinduism with Christianity and Universalism in a mock fictional book. Everyone goes to heaven, after all. And make sure you warp the Trinity into some weird kind of Hindu pantheon. Add an element of mystery to it, and place symbolism everywhere in the book where it is inappropriate, to keep the reader guessing. Or you could write a real Christian book. Read the Bible, study commentary by good Christians, understand Bible doctrine and write devotionals based upon sound Biblical exegesis. You won't be rich or successful in this world - but the Lord will tell you "well done, good and faithful servant."
  26. 1 point
    I said "wallow in filth." Job didn't do that.
  27. 1 point
    What Bible are they reading? Yeah, don't get me started on the heresy I've read in Christian fiction...
  28. 1 point
    Job wallowed. If we don't acknowledge how sinful we are, then there isn't much hope or victory needed. Not into glorifying evil, pain, or the basest, however, if we can't see how bad we get, where is the connection? Even Job wallowed, and the Lord held him to accountability over that wallowing.
  29. 1 point
    I didn't search through the whole list of 40 ideas so I don't know if any of these are Christian. However, it may give you some ideas.
  30. 1 point
    One thing I think is worth chasing out - I agree that Christian fiction is all things Rob mentioned, but I also personally think it doesn't have to remain like that. But instead of broadening the horizons of Christian fiction my focus is on the larger mission field where such restrictions don't already exist by default.
  31. 1 point
    They got the guy who was supposed to replace him too. (Just confirmed this morning.) As for whimpering like a dog? Considering he televised multiple executions, there is no earthly justice for him. Scary thing is he just met his eternal justice though.
  32. 1 point
    I'm trying to decide which email to keep or if I should get rid of all of them and start using something new. I have 3 already (yikes!). They are: Hotmail, Gmail & Yahoo. They all have their good points and their bad, so I'm kind of stuck. 😮 My Facebook techno-geek friend hasn't helped with this issue. ARGH!
  33. 1 point
    I've made a few additions to my website. I've been thinking about turning it into just a blog but I'm not sure what good that will do. I've also changed the layout a tad (very little).
  34. 1 point
    True, EB. Because this one could really suck some in.
  35. 1 point
    A few things I got from the video. Each chapter you should tell the reader how the character is doing. Don’t leave them hanging from what might have occurred at the end of the previous chapter. Orient your reader even it there is no real time break between chapters. Make promises to the reader you will deliver on later. Making characters sound different. Dialogue is action not exposition. Rarely inform the reader of new facts through dialogue. People aren’t that eloquent. Dialogue is about getting another Character to do or feel something. Try to keep narration out of the dialogue. Give most of your character one single emotion that the express every time they speak. People are pretty predictable. The less appropriate the emotion the better.
  36. 1 point
    You can find some other stuff by him at https://danieldavidwallace.com/.
  37. 1 point
    Great stuff as always, Johne. I will check it out.
  38. 1 point
  39. 1 point
    Actually, I found an earlier draft of the screenplay from the hit musical The Greatest Showman, and after seeing the script and how far it came from the final cut, and what a success the film was, makes me feel a whole lot better about my writing!
  40. 1 point
    Ugh. I just had a quick look at those titles. What came to mind is: For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; and they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. (2 Timothy 4:3-4)
  41. 1 point
    It's true that guys don't seem to do as well with shades of color, but I believe we could if we tried. For example, every guy i know who's spent any time working with tools can also easily tell the difference between galvanized iron, aluminum, and stainless steel. (Not to be outdone, my wife can easily tell the difference between silver and platinum...)
  42. 1 point
  43. 1 point
    I don't know if this helps but... set a dedicated time every day in the same place to write. Listen to movie soundtrack compilations. Set a required daily word count. Do not use Microsoft Word. You'll find that your interest and inspiration in writing will grow by leaps and bounds if you do all four.
  44. 1 point
    Interesting quote. Is this why I love to write? I grew up reading and I like to write the sort of thing I would have liked to read when I was that young kid. Maybe it's true. Maybe the audience I want to touch is someone like me.
  45. 1 point
    Also, which I forgot, you need a cookie/privacy message on your subscribe signup. Check out what others have used. I would point you to mine but I recently closed my site.
  46. 1 point
    It looks good! And, yes, like the others have said, you definitely can't do without an About Me page. Also, since you're marketing your speaking ministry, have you got some video content of yourself speaking on some of those topics you mentioned? A YouTube channel, for example, that you could link to? Or a podcast? It doesn't have to be a lot: just something that can give your audience a taste of what you do.
  47. 1 point
    You wear them on your left hand if you're right handed and vice versa. There's four parchments inside. I bought the only set I could afford, and my Rabbi told me, "Don't show them to me." I thought that was really understanding.
  48. 1 point
    Thank you! ...When is it?
  49. 1 point
    I forgot it was Palm Sunday until one of the kids coming to visit their parent at work came in with a palm leaf.
  50. 1 point
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