Showing posts from 2009

God's Garden & the African Christian Heritage

Orthodoxy has done a poor job reaching out to the African American community in this country. On the other hand, Islam has made significant inroads into a community that has a rich spiritual tradition. Islam often sells itself to African American as the religion with African roots. Christianity is the slave masters religion. This is blatantly false. Before Christianity made its way to Northern Europe, it had already penetrated Africa. Christianity has much deeper roots in Africa than many moderns understand. Black saints abound in Orthodoxy and the early church. One such saint is St. Moses the Black. This one saint is the inspiration for the life of a contemporary African American Orthodox priest with a most interesting testimony.

Excitingly, a movie is being made on the life of this wonderful man with a message toward African American and all Americans to return to their religious roots.

Below is a link to the site detailing Fr. Moses Barry and the making of the film:


Acts 14 - In Asia Minor

Acts 14

1. Again they start in the synagogue. This stop in Iconium is typical of many of their stops. They preach in the synagogue and many of the Gentiles there convert but enough Jews remain steadfast that they oppose Paul's presence. Eventually the opposition becomes great enough that they have to move on to other areas. Miracles did occur at the hands of Barnabas and Paul in order to confirm to the people their teaching. Eventually they leave Iconium and flee southwest to Lystra and Derbe.

8ff. In Lystra, Paul heals a lame man that had been lame from birth. As a result of the healing, the people proclaim Paul and Barnabas to be gods.

Apparently, the people in Lystra had a legend that Zeus and Hermes had visited their land disguised as mortals, and no one gave them any hospitality except for one older couple. In their anger at the people, Zeus and Hermes wiped out the whole population, except for the old couple. No wonder the people of Lystra were so quick to honor Paul a…

Acts 13 - Paul's First Missionary Journey

Acts 13

This is a wonderful passage this gives us another glimpse into the life of the early church. The Antiochian church had gathered together for worship and Paul and Barnabas were sent on a missionary journey.

Several men are mentioned in these first couple verses and are identified as prophets and teachers.

1. Simeon who was called Niger (possibly Simon the Cyrene who carried the cross of Christ). The term Niger means black and it may not have been a surname but a nickname describing him. Cyrene was a town in modern day Libya.

The Holy Apostle Lucius of the Seventy became bishop in Syrian Laodicia (a former chief city in Phrygia). The Apostle Paul mentions him in the Epistle to the Romans (Rom. 16: 21), among the other Christians whom he greets.

Manaen was courtier of King Herod Antipas as mentioned here and he died in Antioch.

2. “ministered” here is actually the Greek word leitourgia. Obviously where we get our word liturgy. As they served the liturgy the Holy Spirit spok…