Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Watermark - Music Story

What would convince a skeptic that the claims of Christianity are true: that the Creator became a man, died for our sins, was buried, and rose from the dead? And that he offers eternal life to all who believe in him.

Joe believed that the Gospels were legends fabricated long after Jesus died. He bought into the radical beliefs of the Jesus Seminar. “They’re eye witness accounts,” I countered, “written within sixty years of Jesus’ death. Do the research.”

Gary Habermas did the research and found that most critical scholars (skeptical, liberal, and conservative) regard twelve facts about Jesus as historical, including these four facts:

Jesus died by crucifixion.
His tomb was empty.
His disciples believed they saw the risen Christ.
His Church exploded on the scene.

While Joe was doing research, church exploded on his scene. Once a month on a Saturday morning Bob would join a group of men for breakfast at church. Joe asked if he could tag along. The men celebrated the miracle of new life in Christ. There was no pretense or fa├žade. They acknowledged chaotic histories, relationships gone wrong, dark cravings, unrealized dreams. They shared how Jesus changed them, restoring relationships, rebuilding families, filling their lives with hope, meaning, and purpose. “Why do you drag me to these things?” Joe would ask Bob on the way home. Bob's expression told Joe that he loved him.

Joe’s story was messy. Unlike people from his past, when the men learned of his story, they were not accusatory, or judgmental, or vindictive. They saw him as God sees him, a person of infinite value and worth. They also didn’t justify his past. All need the forgiveness of a Savior! The Creator died for him, too, offered him forgiveness and new life.

Christianity began to ring true to Joe. And then … (From the album “This & That - A Little Bit of Everything” this video is scrolling playback of the song.)

John Newton
Amazing Grace by John Newton
Yes! God changes people. Click here to read about a life radically changed by Jesus – John Newton, writer of the beloved hymn Amazing Grace.

Click here and here to read the facts of Jesus’ life that critical scholars consider historical.

You can get print (PDF – lead sheet format) and/or digital (MusicXML™ for praise band) sheet music for Watermark.
Click here for print sheet music.

Click here for digital sheet music.
(MusicXML™ is the standard open format for sharing digital sheet music.
Check the help files in your music notation app for directions on importing MusicXML™ files.)

Monday, March 6, 2017

The Odds - Music Story

Who? Where? What?

There was an accident near our house involving a pickup and a sedan. The drivers were OK, the sedan sustained scratches, but the pickup was badly damaged. Traffic patrol arrived. The driver of the pickup said the sedan ran a red light and hit him. The sedan driver angrily denied it and said the accident was the pickup driver’s fault.

Two eye witnesses came forward. Who were they, where were they, what did they see? The eye witnesses didn’t know each other or the drivers involved in the accident. They were driving the two cars stopped behind the pickup. Each saw the light turn green then each saw the pickup enter the intersection. The sedan driver was ticketed for running a red light.

The Genesis creation account seems like the scene of a traffic accident, with people giving different versions of what happened. According to some, plants were created before the sun. If that is so, others retort, then Genesis ran a red light, damaging the credibility of the rest of the Bible.

But, wait! Genesis 1 says there was an eye witness to the creation events. Who? The Spirit of God. Where? He was on the surface of the water that covered a formless and empty earth. What? He saw darkness. Can anything else confirm this? Yes! Psalms tells us that primordial earth was a water world. The book of Job tells us that clouds covered primordial earth like a garment, wrapping it in thick darkness.

Genesis 1
"Let there be light"
The earth was wet. The sky was dark. Sunlight couldn’t penetrate the clouds. The first creation miracle transformed earth’s atmosphere so that a little bit of sunshine could reach the surface of the ocean where God’s Spirit was working. When we ask the eyewitness to creation where he was and what he saw, the order of the creation miracles in Genesis 1 reads like the history of planet earth. What are the odds of that happening?

From the musical The Majesty of the Maker! this video is scrolling playback of the song.


You can get print (PDF) and/or digital (MusicXML™) sheet music for The Odds.
Click here for print sheet music.

Click here for digital sheet music.
(MusicXML™ is the standard open format for sharing digital sheet music.
Check the help files in your music notation app for directions on importing MusicXML™ files.)
Click here to see a Creation Timeline Chart (Genesis 1 creation days superimposed on the natural history of planet earth).

Click here for the booklet, Genesis One: A Scientific Perspective.