Jamestown: 1619 Remembered

Growing up in Williamsburg, Virginia, I pretty much took nearby Jamestown Island, the 1607 site of the first successful English settlement in North America, for granted. Yet sadly, I still meet people who know very little about Jamestown, and its historical importance. So, it is very exciting to remember Jamestown on this day, when many of the world’s eyes are upon this island.

On July 30, 1619, a very hot day indeed, the very first democratic English assembly was held, in the “New World,” known as the House of Burgesses, the forerunner to today’s Virginia General Assembly.

Aerial look over Jamestown, Virginia, in the 1950s, showing the beginning of modern archaeological work being performed on the island. 20-years later, as a middle school kid, I worked on one of those archaeological projects (taken from the book, New Discoveries at Jamestown, by archaeologist J. Paul Hudson and co-author John L. Cotter).

1619 was a big year in Jamestown for other reasons. The small colony established at Jamestown was starting to stabilize, but with very few women around, a lot of the men wanted to leave (for understandable reasons). In response, the Virginia Company of London ordered that “…a fit hundredth might be sent of women, maids young and uncorrupt, to make wives to the inhabitants and by that means to make the men there more settled and less movable….” By 1620-1621, women started to show up at Jamestown.

It was a tough sell to get women to come live in an area, centered in a mosquito-infested, swampy island. Some women were secretly kidnapped to bring them to Virginia, but a more voluntary arrangement was needed for the colony to survive. What effectively was a “mail-order” bride system, to provide incentives for impoverished English women to make the journey across the Atlantic, saved the day for the young Virginia colony.

Barely a month after the first House of Burgesses meeting, in July, 1619, the first Africans arrived at Jamestown. What is particularly notable was that among this first boatload of Africans, were actually prisoners taken from a Portuguese slave ship. These Africans were originally treated as indentured servants. In principle, these Africans could purchase their freedom.

But over the following decades, the rules gradually changed. What started out as customs, here and there, eventually became Virgina colony law, as the indentured servanthood status of dark-skinned persons was transformed to make them slaves for life.

There was some resistance to these legal changes. For example, it was not considered proper for a Christian to enslave a fellow Christian. So, if an African person was baptized, they could claim a right to their freedom. Yet as regretted now, in our day, even that exemption was eventually eradicated. Even racial intermarriage was outlawed in 1691.

I wonder what would have happened if those slavery laws were never passed in the Virginia colony. I wonder what it might have been like, if Christians in Virginia would have studied their Bibles a bit more closely, to learn that racism has no actual basis in the Scriptures. Perhaps they might have rethought the whole slavery business, and the inherent racism that undergirded it.

It is worth thinking about… and remembering.

Other posts about Jamestown: (a) Musings about the parallels between Jamestown’s Captain John Smith and the ancient Jewish historian, Josephus, (b) Jamestown and the first Thanksgiving, and (c) Veracity co-blogger, John Paine, takes us on a YouTube video trip to Jamestown, to help us learn some lessons about the historicity of Jesus.


Kissing the “Purity” and “Courtship” Culture Goodbye??

Joshua Harris was only 21-years old when his blockbuster, best-seller I Kissed Dating Goodbye was published. The book spread like wildfire through evangelical churches. “Purity” and “courtship” were the watchwords of the day.

So, what do you do when 22 years later, the much acclaimed author informs his followers that he and his wife are pursing separation? (ALSO: See update near the end of this post, made after this blog post was originally posted)

This book will soon be a collectors item, as the publisher will cease further printings, per the request of the author.

In the mid-to-late 1990s, Harris’ message was that young, single people should avoid the modern practice of dating, and pursue “courtship” instead. In courtship, single people should only pursue a relationship with a member of the opposite sex, with the intention of becoming married.  Modern dating had simply become a training ground for divorce. Therefore, if you want a successful marriage, casual dating should be avoided.

In those years, just as it still is today, the Christian emphasis on avoiding the dangers of sexual relations outside of marriage was being disregarded, in the wider culture. Premature physical intimacy, and lack of boundaries in dating, was dehumanizing, thereby confusing self-gratification with intimacy, and eventually destroying marriages.

Harris’ solution was to “avoid everything that leads up to that consequence.” Part of that included the advice, that you should not even kiss your prospective mate until your wedding day. Holding hands? Forget that, too.

What about emotional intimacy, characteristic of dating? That should be avoided as well, as “giving your heart away” before you get married, to someone else, only decreases your ability to give fully to the one you end up marrying.

I had been single for a long time before Harris’ book ever came out, but I could appreciate its appeal, when it eventually did. There had been infamously little published by Christian authors, about dating, throughout the 1980s into the early 1990s…. and I had made a series of mistakes. Sadly, the confusing and conflicting advice I got in my twenties, in those years, from other sincere Christians, did not help very much.

However, there was Elisabeth Elliot‘s 1984 book, Passion and Purity: Learning to Bring Your Love Life Under Christ’s Control, that got passed around in my InterVarsity Christian Fellowship circles. Elliot, the surviving spouse of the martyred missionary in Ecuador, Jim Elliot, sought to address issues of the cultural obsession with dating, sex, and intimacy, with direct boldness. It was a message that many Christian young people, in my generation, needed to hear.

I was gripped with her message. Elisabeth Elliot wrote with confident authority, but there were a few things that were nagging in my mind, that I was not completely sure about. Reruns of Elliot’s radio programs are still available at the Bible Broadcasting Network.

As a teenager, Joshua Harris made some mistakes of his own. Reading Elliot’s book emboldened him to radically change course, and try to retell Elliot’s message for a new generation. Nervously, Joshua Harris even sent a copy of his yet unpublished manuscript for I Kissed Dating Goodbye to Elisabeth Elliot, to get her impressions. Harris was elated to hear back from Ms. Elliot, who affirmed Harris for writing a “worthwhile book.” Harris sent his manuscript out to be published shortly thereafter. In 2013, Harris returned the favor by writing the forward to a reprint edition of Passion and Purity, in which he tells the story I just summarized.

The success of I Kissed Dating Goodbye, was founded upon a hard-hitting, counter-cultural message. On the positive side, I Kissed Dating Goodbye affirmed God’s good purposes for marriage, and for reserving sexual relations within the context of marriage. But on the controversial side, those Christians who still practiced “dating” were treated with spiritual contempt, among other things. Plus, and sadly, a number of those marriages, founded upon Harris’ principles of “courtship,” ended in divorce anyway.

Harris for years overlooked the views of his detractors. Harris went onto become an instant evangelical celebrity, following the amazing popularity of his book. While still in his twenties, Harris got married, started a family, and soon became a pastor of a mega-church, at age 30. He took on this pastoral responsibility, without ever having had any seminary-level, advanced, theological training.

The Sovereign Grace Ministries network of churches, of which he was a pastor of one, got embroiled in a controversy, over claims of child and sexual abuse, in the churches’ ministry programs.  The incidents that started the controversy happened prior to Harris’ tenure, but the issue was never adequately resolved. The controversy eventually led Joshua Harris to step down as lead pastor, in 2015, in order to pursue advanced theological training at Regent College, in British Columbia, Canada.

It was roughly during this time that Harris began to have second thoughts about the message of his book. Some tied the criticisms of his book with his belief in complementarianism, that men and women are different, emphasizing male-only leadership in churches, combined with the particular, extreme slant that Harris had been promoting. In an interview with Sojourner’s magazine, Harris concedes:

  • I think in our setting, though, the thing that I would say is that we had a very restricted view of the role of women. That’s one of the biggest things I regret in my time of being a pastor is the way we taught about women in the church, women in leadership, in the home, and so on. And I think there are massive indications when you don’t have a female perspective in in policymaking and decisions related to something like that. Like, I think that we would have made better decisions if there had been women in on those moments.But it’s not quite as simple as saying that … I think there were also theological problems related to our view of the role of pastors and our view of the role of the faith and ways that were, in our case, unique to our movement: the low view of psychiatry or therapists and those types of things, and the idea that pastors should be able to help you with any kind of life issue that you’re facing.When it comes to something like sex abuse, we just did not have the training. We needed to be calling in other people, we needed to be, obviously, making sure that — and we did report many cases of sexual abuse, but in some cases obviously we made huge mistakes.

    So there’s sort of a web of problems. But I do think that a very patriarchal, male-centered, low view of women has connections to sexual abuse in different cases.

Harris began to interact with readers of his book, listening to their stories. He chronicled his journey, in a documentary film entitled I Survived I Kissed Dating Goodbye. If you were ever troubled by Harris’ book, you would do well to watch this film and discuss it with others.

His conclusion? Josh Harris came to admit that he gave millions of people the wrong advice. Harris had condemned dating as being “unbiblical,” despite the fact that the Bible nowhere addresses the topic of dating. In an effort to try to help people live lives of purity, Harris ultimately realized that his solution was heaping toxic doses of legalism and fear, upon the consciences of his readers.

Josh Harris still believes in abstinence before marriage. But Josh Harris now believes that healthy dating can be a good thing, recommending books like Dr. Henry Cloud’s Boundaries in Dating, and Debra Fileta’s True Love Dates, instead of his own.

Reactions to Harris’ rethinking about his book have ranged the gamut. Some believe Harris has gone too far in condemning his own book, believing that “courtship” is still the way to go, and giving up too easily on otherwise good and sound principles.

Others believe that Harris did not go far enough, in making an apology. Nevertheless, Josh Harris made the decision to ask the publisher to discontinue the publication of I Kissed Dating Goodbye, along with two other books, that stress the same themes.

The popular conservative, and indeed, Reformed, Christian blogger, Tim Challies, interestingly agrees with Josh Harris’ critical analysis of his own book:

  • There are times when a kind of weirdness settles over evangelicalism, when for a while people are swept away by strange and flawed ideas. This usually happens when Christians are attempting to counter ideas that are prevalent outside the church. Instead of reacting in a measured way, we collectively over-react.

The type of self-chastisement that Josh Harris has been going through, despite being so confident in his previous views for so long, buoyed by constant affirmations of others who wanted to think the same way, can have devastating consequences.

Sadly, Josh Harris announced in July, 2019 that he and his wife are separating, after 20 years of marriage.

In thinking about the story of Josh Harris and I Kissed Dating Goodbye, I can think of several lessons for Christians:

  • Relationships are hard. While indeed helpful to many, there was nevertheless a subtle, deceptive allure to Josh Harris’ book, that sought to bypass that truth: Relationships are hard.
  • Friendships with members of the opposite sex are a good thing.
  • Doing fun things together is great, particularly in a group. Setting boundaries in relationships is essential. Avoid late-night solo dates. Revive the art of letter writing. An extreme focus on purity can actually backfire.
  • One can take to heart Josh Harris’ self-critical reflections of his own book, without abandoning a commitment to traditional, Scriptural sexual ethics.
  • The “purity” movement and the “courtship” movement have had some good things about them. But even the best of ideas can descend into an unhealthy form of legalism.
  • Christians may have good intentions in rejecting certain cultural trends, but we must caution against accepting ideas that are reading modern concepts into the Bible.
  • The “courtship” movement can set people up to have the wrong expectations about marriage, that are completely unrealistic, just as much as “dating” can do.
  • The idea of “courtship” works best when you have people in your life, who know you well, and who also know your potential spouse well. Such people can point out blindspots that you and your potential mate may miss. But cultivating the type of community, where such people can exist in your life, can be a difficult task, in and of itself. Ideally, such community should be experienced within a local church (but a lot of these points can apply to “dating,” too).
  • Churches should avoid recruiting young people, in their twenties, into becoming pastors of mega-churches, at such young ages, and they should make sure that whoever pastors their churches have adequate theological training, before assuming such leadership positions… also, getting advice from a 21-year old on how to prepare for, build and sustain a life-long marriage is rather insane.
  • Mentoring younger singles, and even young couples, by older, more mature married believers, is a critical need in our day.
  • The local church surely has a business-side to it, but first and foremost, a local church is a family, and not a business. Churches are ultimately families, governed by seasoned fathers and mothers, and not by corporately-minded CEOs.
  • There are good forms of complementarianism, and there are bad forms of complementarianism.
  • A lot of egalitarian types of thinking are, in reality, over-reacting towards such bad forms of complementarianism.

I happen to hold to a moderate form of complementarianism, but there are bad forms of complementarianism, that should be rejected. For example, there are those who teach that women are not to be in spiritual authority over men, because in their reading of 1 Timothy 2:11-15, such teachers contend that Eve was deceived; that is, from the text, “Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived, ” because women are inherently more susceptible to becoming deceived than men. And because women are more deceivable, women should not be entrusted in positions of spiritual authority.

A more moderate approach to complementarianism will affirm that only men are to serve as elders/pastors in a local church. But this does NOT mean that this has anything to do with women being more susceptible to becoming deceived, than men. If anything, a healthy approach to complementarian theology would encourage women to give their perspective to men in the spiritual leadership of the church, while encouraging such men to receive such input gladly, with ready hearts and minds. Women and men can help one another see things that the other can not see.

The text of 1 Timothy 2:11-15 simply states an observation as to what happened in Creation. To try to read into the text some type of innate characteristic, created by God, that distinguishes men from women, as to their intellectual or spiritual capabilities, is an abuse of Scripture, reading something into the Bible that simply does not exist. To put it bluntly, the Bible does not teach that women are more spiritually gullible than men. This is an example of the type of patriarchal, bad complementarian theology that Josh Harris is now against. I have tried to articulate a more sacramentally-informed, non-authoritarian-istic perspective on complementarian theology in a twenty-part blog post series.

Such bad theology has inflicted an untold amount of pain and suffering in evangelical churches today. Josh Harris is surely working through a lot of the guilt and shame associated with his own promotion of such bad theology.

It might be best for Christians, who know of Josh Harris, to remember Josh and his wife in your prayers. This is a difficult time for the both of them.

I am sure that Josh Harris and his wife are both wonderful people, and I do hope the best for them. If there is any good news to come out of this whole story, it is this: It takes a lot of courage to admit that you were wrong. Josh Harris has displayed this courage, and I commend him for it. Would we all have such courage.

UPDATED: Monday, July 29, 2019

After posting this a few days ago, I have learned today, that along with Josh Harris’ announcement about his separation, he also announced that he no longer considers himself to be a Christian. In particular, he announced on Instagram that he regrets his previous posture regarding the LGBTQ community, and that he now fully affirms “marriage equality.” Christianity Today magazine has a very helpful followup essay, on this topic. According to Harris, “Many people tell me that there is a different way to practice faith and I want to remain open to this, but I’m not there now.⁣⁣” I pray that Josh Harris finds his way back onto the path, in God’s timing, and more deeply experiences the grace of God.


How Well Do You Know What Other People Believe?

How much do you know about what people believe about religious faith? The Pew Research Center has a “U.S. Religious Knowledge Quiz” that you can take, to see how you compare with other Americans. It has 15 questions, and only takes a couple of minutes. Jews, atheists, and agnostics tend to score slightly higher than evangelical Christians.


Was Von Braun a “Creationist?”

In reliving the historic Apollo 11 moon landing this past week (see the PBS American Experience, Chasing the Moon film), it came to mind that the Apollo 11 team of Armstrong, Aldrin, and Collins would never have made it there, if it had not been for the rocketry skills of Wernher Von Braun. In his earlier years, Von Braun built rockets, for Adolph Hitler, that threatened the city of London, during the latter stages of World War 2.

A former Nazi, Wernher Von Braun came to the United States, to eventually gain the confidence of President John F. Kennedy, encouraging that the Americans could actually beat the Russians to the moon. Von Braun’s Saturn V rocket sent the astronauts to the moon, to make their historic, televised visit, on July 20, 1969.

Towards the last portion of his life, Von Braun revealed that he believed in God, and that God’s design could be seen in creation. So, it would appear that Wernher Von Braun was a “Creationist.” But what kind of “Creationist” was he? Was he a Young Earth Creationist? An Old Earth Creationist? Or an Evolutionary Creationist?

Many Christians are deeply divided on this issue.

Both the Institute for Creation Research and Answers in Genesis, make the claim that Von Braun was indeed a Young Earth Creationist.  Such sources contend that Von Braun criticized the teaching of evolution only in public schools. In defense of his view, Von Braun stated in a letter, that was read in a California court case, over Young Earth Creation being taught in schools:

for the amazing string of successes we had with our Apollo flights to the moon … was that we tried to never overlook anything. It is in that same sense of scientific honesty that I endorse the presentation of alternative theories for the origin of the universe, life and man in the science classroom. It would be an error to overlook the possibility that the universe was planned rather than happening by chance

It would appear, also, that Von Braun did write a forward to a book, endorsing Young Earth Creationism. But as a blogger for the National Center for Science Education (NCSE) reports, Von Braun later clarified the meaning of this letter:

“1. If fundamentalistic religion means belief that the book of Genesis gives a correct scientific account of how the world came into being; that 4004 BC is the date of the origin of the earth, and that all living things were “created” in their final form rather than developed through evolutionary, “survival-of-the-fittest” processes, then I am most emphatically not a believer in fundamental religion.
2. If, however, the question is whether behind the many random processes which are operating in nature, there is a “divine intent”, my answer is an equally emphatic “yes.” With this position I am only sharing and accepting the views expressed by giants of science such as Newton, Kepler, Faraday, Pascal[,] and Einstein.”

It would appear that the Young Earth Creationist claim, of Von Braun believing in an earth that is less that 6,000 years old, is complicated by Von Braun’s later clarification. He would more than likely be somewhere between an Old Earth Creationist and an Evolutionary Creationism.

Either way, Von Braun was clearly a “Creationist,” in the sense that he was a Christian. But the specific belief he held, as to the age of the earth, along with the related age of the universe, where the scientific consensus holds as being about 13.799 billion years old, and not 6,000 years old, according to Young Earth Creationists, appears to have been in some measure of flux, during his life.

But something tells me that the specific details of Von Braun’s beliefs, and their relationship with the beliefs of most scientists today, who hold to the scientific consensus, might not gain that much interest among many Christians today, at least, not as much as it should. Yet perhaps, it is better to focus on the fundamental belief that God created the universe, the “who” of Creation, and not get so hung up on the exact timing and mechanical detail as to how God created the universe.

I take to heart, that the inventor of the awe-inspiring, massive Saturn V rocket, that put a “man on the moon,” looked to the God of the Bible, for his own inspiration.


Apollo 11 : The Moon Landing Remembered

I was just a kid in elementary school, when Neil Armstrong uttered his famous words, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”

My parents had taken me down to Virginia Beach, for our annual, family summer beach trip. The old Halifax Hotel had but one “common room,” where the only television set was to be found, which sat off and idle most evenings.

But on that sweltering, Sunday summer evening, July 20, 1969, the room was packed. Everyone was huddled around the TV, watching this grainy, black-and-white image of an astronaut, over the crackly radio channel, transmitting nearly a quarter of a million miles away.

I wriggled up and found a spot on the floor, just feet away from the TV.  I was riveted.

To this very day, I get emotional just thinking about that night, as Walter Cronkite narrated those historical events, particularly the suspenseful moon landing, with its infamously mysterious “1202” alarm. Grateful for a safe landing, co-pilot Buzz Aldrin celebrated communion inside the lunar module, doing so privately.

My parents allowed me to stay up late to watch Armstrong step off the lunar lander ladder, amid the voices of adults all around me, chatting about how remarkable this event really was.

I drifted off to sleep that night, dreaming about what it would be like to work for NASA.

Thousands of people, including scientists, engineers, you name it, all had bonded together, with a common mission, to get a man to the moon, and back to earth, safely. Personal interests were set aside, and even a few lives were lost in the process, in an effort to reach that lofty goal.

By the end of that vacation week, I took walks out on the beach at night, looking up at a nearly full moon, simply amazed that two human beings had walked on the surface of that glowing object, so far away. This was no sketchy propaganda project, filmed on some Arizona back lot. It was a thrilling moment in human history. I was hooked on science and technology from that moment on.

Little did I know, that after college, I would end up working as a government contractor at NASA, for about 15 years. Now, among a new generation of explorers, there is talk about going to Mars!…. Even an Arab Islamic nation wants to get to Mars, very soon!

.     .     .

All of us have moments like these, iconic moments that just stick in our memory, and inspire us.

What makes these moments even more profound, is when these moments get shared with others, even with others whom we barely know, or do not know at all. Some are electrifying and uplifting, like the Apollo 11 moon landing. Some are downright shocking and shattering, and lower our spirits.

For my parents’ generation, it was events like when it was announced that the Soviet satellite, Sputnik, had made it into space, in 1957, sparking the race to the moon (the Soviets almost scooped the American Apollo 11 mission, with their unmanned Luna 15).

My mother distinctively remembered where she was, the afternoon she heard that President John F. Kennedy had been shot, in 1963. It was the grief of a nation.

I remember clearly where I was when the Challenger space shuttle blew up, in 1986. Then there was the moment when the First Gulf War started in 1991, when Revered Billy Graham prayed with President George H. W. Bush for wisdom, in the White House.

For younger generations, the most profound memory has been watching the second plane crash into the World Trade Center, on September 11, 2001.

Or a few years later, in 2008, it was the election of the first African American to the Presidency of the United States, breaking a color barrier. A year ago, it was when divers rescued a group of young soccer players, who got trapped in a cave in Thailand. The list could go on.

But perhaps, the Apollo 11 moon landing will stand out as the definitive moment of my lifetime. As U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said, “Apollo 11 is the only event of the 20th century that stands a chance of being widely remembered in the 30th century.

.     .     .

Just a quick lesson here: Iconic moments, like the 1969 moon landing, are opportunities for people to create a sense of common bond and unity, with a large number of other humans.

Moral psychologist, Jonathan Haidt talks about the idea of the “hive hypothesis,” suggesting that normally, we as humans are primarily self-absorbed, like chimpanzees are, about 90% of the time. Scientific studies show that we are pretty much concerned with ourselves as individuals, doing our own thing, even if others are around us. However, about 10% of the time, humans seek to cohere with others, and cooperate in groups, creating a sense of unity, just as you find in a bee hive. It is those “10% moments” that make community life and family possible. The very individualization that drives us, like chimpanzees, is ironically transcended by these bee hive-type experiences.

We live in an era, in the era of social media, when such large scale, cooperative iconic moments, are becoming more elusive. The customized individualization of media sources, the 24-hour news cycle, and the explosion of information on the Internet, has made it more and more difficult to experience such collective experiences, of sharing iconic moments together, with masses of people.

Cultural commentators lament that we live in an age where people are greatly divided from one another. As Jake Meador, MereOrthodoxy blogger and author of the recent In Search of the Common Good (with a forward by Tim Keller) put it:

Our communities are disintegrating, as …the breakdown of the family leave(s) us anxious and alone—indeed, half of all Americans report daily feelings of loneliness. Our public discourse is polarized and hateful.

But this is where the Christian church can play a role, in healing the breaches that exist between people so divided… by conveying the Good News. The Apollo 11 moon landing may have been the most iconic moment in my life, that I shared with a great many of other people.  But for Christians, the greatest iconic moment of all human history is found in the Death and Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

As believers gather together, once a week (if not more), the most important thing we can do, is to continue to rehearse and tell the story of Calvary, and the Empty Tomb. The news of the Risen Christ, and the continual retelling of that story, over and over again, transformed the Roman Empire, within a mere three or four hundred years. We still recall this event of Jesus’ sacrifice for us, to conquer death and sin, every time we gather together to break bread, for the Lord’s Supper, 2,000 years later.

Then there is the entire task of following the Great Commission, that of following Jesus’ last instructions, to “go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matthew 28:16-20). It is a common mission, shared by Christians, across many different denominations, that binds believers together, where personal interests are set aside, and even lives are lost in the process, martyrs for the faith.

In a recent blog, by Baylor scholar Alan Jacobs, Jacobs recalls from Larry Hurtado’s book, Destroyer of the Gods, that:

 

  • In 40 A.D. there were about a thousand Christians
  • In 100 A.D. no more than ten thousand
  • In 200 A.D. around two hundred thousand
  • In 300 A.D. around six million

 

That tremendous growth in the early church happened before the Emperor Constantine issued his Edict of Milan , despite a few periods of state-sanctioned persecution of believers. That news about Jesus continues to transform our world today, day in and day out, as millions of Christians seek to continue fulfilling that Great Commission.

In an age where it feels like the world is becoming unglued at the seams, and the Christian church appears not to be doing that much better, we would do well to continually go back and recall that iconic moment of the Risen Christ, greeting those women, outside of the tomb, where the stone was rolled way.

The moon landing of Apollo 11 was an event of worldwide importance, as television viewers all over the globe were glued to watching the drama of a few men, and a small spacecraft, unfold. But it was a secular event, nonetheless.

The story of the Risen Christ tells a different type of story, transcending the boundary between natural and supernatural, that seems almost impenetrable in our secular world today. There is a lesson to be learned here, from Apollo 11, that invites Christians to ponder our faith more deeply.


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