Why Are We Here? Silly Question?

Last week, Richard Dawkins said that the question of “Why are we here?” is a silly question.  This is circular reasoning on the part of Dawkins and his ilk.  If life came into being by chance, as he believes, then it is silly to seek a purpose for our lives here on earth.  He believes we are here by accident so of course he believes it is a silly question to ask why we are here.

The question behind  “Why are we here?” is “Where did we come from?”  Dawkins has no answer to that.  He gawks at the universe (or is it a multiverse?) and asks lots of questions – that’s what scientists do.    But he will be the first to admit that he doesn’t understand how everything came to be.  He has a hypothessis, but he doesn’t have a firm answer.  It seems a bit rich to call “Why are we here?” a silly question when you don’t have an answer to the underlying question.

Christians believe that God, the creator of the universe and of human beings, has an eternal purpose for us.  He has revealed that purpose through his unique Son who became flesh and dwelt among us, and who is now glorified.  He can provide a firm answer to the question,  “Why are we here?” and wise is the person who asks that question and hears the answer that Jesus gives.

Visit “Believing in Creation” using the link below.

http://www.simplybible.com.au/f29c.htm

 

Mission at Gladstone

At the beginning of April I preached in a mission at Gladstone Queensland.  I spoke four times on the theme of salvation by faith, including the last title, “Busting the Faith Only Myth”.  There were a couple of visitors from the community, and some of the folk from the church in Rockhampton visited.  The church at Gladstone consists of three families, one Australian, one American, and one from the Philippines.  We were given much hospitality and enjoyed ourselves, except that my wife had a serious fall and had to go to hospital in an ambulance.  We stayed some extra days because of that, and I preached again on the second Sunday.

Festival parade

The festival was on during the mission, including the yacht race.  We saw the festival parade headed by the kilted bagpipe players.

Gladstone Festival

The street parade begins

 

A Miserable Morning with Facebook

I must confess that I don’t like facebook, and let the page for simplybible.com grow whiskers.  This morning I decided to fix it up, and here’s the result:

Facebook page for simplybible.com

Facebook is pretty clever until it crashes, which it did mightily.  Once I shut down and rebooted, everything worked fine.  Anyway, simplybible.com is now properly connected to facebook, and with the Lord’s help I’ll try to keep it up to date without going insane.  If only it was as easy and reliable to use as WordPress!  (Update March 2013:  Actually the page has been easy to maintain after my initial problems.)

facebook

My Experience with WordPress

When I moved simplybible.com to a new server, WordPress was one of the applications available.  I decided to try it, to add a blog to simplybible.com with the capability for users  to leave comments.

I attempted to install WordPress on my server.  After five minutes I thought my WordPress  installation had fizzed.  Imagine my surprise when I found my blog was happily up and running! Next I had to choose my template and upload a header image.  That was successful the first time, except that I made the image the wrong height. However the simple forms that Site Administration provides made the header job easy despite my mistake.

It took me only a little while to figure out the structure of categories and how to set up the menu bar under the header.  Few applications I have ever used are so logical and intuitive.  I was also pleased at the way WordPress handles tasks quietly, making a database, uploading to the server, pinging Google, and creating a navigation menu, all automatically.

To point header links to simplybible.com and get Google Analytics to register visits to the blog, I found it necessary to tweak a little of the code.  How surprised I was to see an excellent built in editor, and to see scripts and style sheets so well written.

I’m not interested in using WordPress for a website, only for a blog/forum associated with my existing site.  WordPress seems to do that fuss free.

Ron Graham

 

 

Teaching the Gospel in Bislama

Near the end of the 20th century,  I (Ron Graham) spent the best part of a year as a missionary in Vanuatu, preaching and holding classes in various places on Efate, Ambrym, and Tanna islands.  While living at Eton Village, I learned Bislama, the national language of Vanuatu, so that my teaching could be understood by folk who did not know much English.

Bislama is a language with a Melanesian grammar, a vocabulary based on Australian English, and pronunciation influenced by village languages.  It is written using much the same alphabet as English, but the spelling is phonetic.  The Bible has been completely translated into Bislama.

For many years now, I have had a Bislama website online which you may care to look at.  The link is provided below.

http://members.datafast.net.au/rjgram/xbishome.htm

Here’s an excerpt:

I gat wan God we bifo bifo i mekem graon, mo olgeta samting we i stap long graon ya.  Mo tu hem i mekem solwota mo dipsi, mo olgeta samting we i stap long solwota ya.  Mo tu hem i mekem skae, mo olgeta samting we i stap long skae ya (Jenesis 1:1-31, 2:1-2).

Yumi no mas mekem wosip long narafala god.  Nao God ya, we i mekem olgeta samting, hem i mekem man mo woman.  Ol man long wol ya, oli mas mekem wosip long hem from.  Yumi no mas mekem wosip long wan narafala god, from narafala god ya i no mekem eni samting, i no laef, i no gat bigbigfala paoa olsem God we hem i mekem olgeta samting  (Ol Wok 17:22-33).  Longtaem bifo, Setan i traem Jisas se, Yu bodaon long mi, yu mekem wosip long mi. Be Jisas i talem olsem, Baebol i talem se man i mas wosip long Hae God nomo, we i God blong yu  (Matiu 4:8-10).

Mo tu yumi mas mekem wosip long Pikinini blong God  Hae God i gat wan Pikinini we hem i stret Pikinini long God, mo God i nogat narafala we i sem mak olsem Pikinini ya. Hem nao hem i wan nomo  (Jon 3:16).  Pikinini ya i bin givhan blong mekem olgeta samting.  Hem i stap wetem God fastaem.  Hem i sem mak olsem God we i Papa blong hem.  God i bin usum Pikinini ya, blong mekem olgeta samting  (Jon 1:1-5  Kolosi  1:15-20).   Hemia nao, longtaem bifo disfala Pikinini i bon long wol ya, i kam olsem man, be tu oltaem hem i stap olsem God  (Jon 1:14  Filipae 2:5-13).  Yumi mas mekem wosip long hem from.