He Is Risen!

Internet Photo of the Tomb of Christ

On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’ Then they remembered his words.”
Luke 24:1-8

Easter Blessings to all of you at Shepherding All God’s Creatures and beyond!!

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Prayer As Spiritual Warfare – Part One

“You will be ever hearing but never understanding;
you will be ever seeing but never perceiving’.
For this people’s heart has become calloused;
they hardly hear with their ears,
and they have closed their eyes.
Otherwise, they might see with their eyes,
hear with their ears,
understand with their hearts
and turn, and I would heal them.”
Isaiah 6:9; Matthew 13:15

Painting by Hogarth
‘The Sleeping Church’

Over the last week from April 3rd through the 9th, SAGC held our first monthly prayer event with a prayer conference call taking place on the last day. To learn more, go here.

As the Title suggests, the topic was about exposing lies that the powers and principalities hold the world and the church in bondage to, and about seeing spiritual warfare in the reading of scripture.  In the narrative that began the event, Jessica wrote: Continue reading

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Our Saviour Is With Us – Lent Reflections

Shaded Cross, by Michael Bernico, Courtesy CreationSwap

The Lent season is upon us.  It is the season in which we celebrate our Saviour’s resurrection and the sacrifice He made in order to destroy the devil’s work (1 John 3:8) and provide a way for all of us to come to Him personally for salvation.  His redemptive work on the cross, however, does not stop with human-creatures.  It includes the entire created order – the earth, animal kingdom, and cosmos.  For a good read on what science can teach us about the nature of time, life, and the expanding cosmos, check out “The Cosmic Dance“, by Greg Boyd.  In it is shown implications that we partake in, for ill or for good, determining the future.  This can shed light on the passage of scripture that says we can speed the Lord’s coming (2 Peter 3:12) when we partner with God, bringing creation closer to the day of God’s final redemption for us all. Continue reading

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Sarx Creature Conference – Part Two

Izaak van Oosten – Garden of Eden
Wikimedia Public Domain

It seems like yesterday I was writing, excited to be leaving to fly to England for the Sarx Conference.  Here it is, ten days later, the event and the entire trip is over!  It was a marvelous conference!  Each and every speaker had messages appropriate to reach the churches today, this is so needed on a broad scale.  Oh, that we could all attend our church to hear a message that includes animal welfare, making shepherding the earth and ALL that is in it of prime theological concern!

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Sarx Creature Conference

I am excited tonight, as tomorrow, I will fly to England to attend the Sarx Creature Conference held March 18th in London!  I will meet Roslyne Smith and Marcello Newall for the first time!  We have been blogging together for nearly four years.

The story began in December of 2013.  I had been introduced to an online animal welfare organization called “Not One Sparrow”.  Continue reading

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Welcome our new Author and Prayer Event Leader!

For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” ~Matthew 18:20

Hondecoeter Paradise
Public Domain
Wikimedia

We are pleased to announce that we have a new member!  Jessica Lopez comes from the former group “Christian Vegan Prayer Calls Group” which we have combined under the Shepherding All God’s Creatures Prayer Group.  All members from the former group have been added to SAGC’s. Continue reading

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Ode to a Turkey

A tragedy happened tonight.  There weren’t any reporters on the scene.  The incident did not draw attention from the masses.  In fact, it may have been a tragedy that did not stir the heart of the driver or human witnesses – it may have not invoked any emotion whatsoever.  It likely was not even thought of as a tragedy….yet in so many ways it was.  Perhaps there was some feeling of regret, which was likely followed by all the thoughts that bombard our minds and tell us “it was unavoidable.”


As we drove by, my heart ached as I saw the potential danger, knowing that not even I could stop it if it were about to happen.  Continue reading

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Peace Without Borders

Jesus-Eraser by David Hayward of nakedpastor

Jesus-Eraser
by David Hayward of nakedpastor

As we enter this new year with a new President and new administration in the US, some of us may be feeling a bit unnerved.  We are seeing President Trump carry out campaign promises.  He has issued an executive order to stop refugees of certain countries from coming to the United States.  He has also promised a wall will be built between the US and Mexico.  His cabinet picks seem to be setting up a regime built for war, big oil and gas anywhere and everywhere; for big banking without restraint; for more secrecy when it comes to how industry does its business, such as allowing the USDA to cover for animal abusers and to remove records of animal welfare violations from its website (go here for a petition and to read more about the latest on the USDA situation).

We may find our selves asking, are we going backward?  How on earth can we build peaceful relations with others, to protect the environment and animal kingdom, to require transparency from leaders and industry, under these circumstances? Continue reading

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Challenging Religion – Part Six and Conclusion

See Part One here.
See Part Two here.
See Part Three here.
See Part Four here.
See Part Five here.
For the entire article go here: Challenging Religion.


The Righteousness of the Pharisees

At the start of his ministry Jesus announced that his message would bring about a different kind of righteousness, which he contrasted with that of Pharisees: ‘For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.'(45) The Pharisees were hypocritical, petty and legalistic in their devotion but what lacked above all was sincerity. Shortly before his death, Jesus, in fulfillment of the prophetic tradition denounced the Pharisees and the teachers of the law: Continue reading

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Challenging Religion – Part Five

Afternoon Vista-By Marcello Newall

Afternoon Vista-By Marcello Newall

See Part One here.
See Part Two here.
See Part Three here.
See Part Four here.
For the entire article go here: Challenging Religion.


A Case Study in Religion: ‘Eat What is Set Before You’

Twinned with the false interpretation of Jesus’s teaching on clean and unclean, and perhaps an outworking of it, is a second food law that religious Christianity has invented and placed upon believers, it is the ‘Eat what is set before you’ law. This novel dietary regulation is found mainly in conservative denominations and creates a false sense of guilt in those who feel inclined to abstain from certain kinds of food. The adherents to this law, which is flatly contradicted in other passages of the New Testament,(35) claim that a passage in Luke is the foundation for their dogma: Continue reading

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Challenging Religion – Part Four

Photo by Marcello Newall

Photo by Marcello Newall

See Part One here.
See Part Two here.
See Part Three here.
For the entire article go here: Challenging Religion.


The New Kosher

From an animal welfare perspective nowhere do we see the battle between faith and religion more than in the interpretation of Jesus’s teaching on ‘clean’ and ‘unclean’. I personally regard this as one of the most abused teachings of Jesus in the history of Christianity. It represents nothing less than a betrayal of Christ. In a famous passage recorded in both Matthew and Mark, Jesus seeks to overcome the typical religious distinction between what is externally ‘clean’ and ‘unclean’. The immediate context is actually discussing the eating of food without having gone through ceremonial hand-washing: Continue reading

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Challenging Religion – Part Three

Sunset on Lake Michigan by Adam Major Compliments of CreationSwap

Sunset on Lake Michigan
by Adam Major
Compliments of CreationSwap

See Part One here.
See Part Two here.
For the entire article go here: Challenging Religion.


The Destruction of the Temple

As Jesus walks through the corridors of history he beckons those that would follow him to come out of religion and through faith enter a personal relationship with himself. The echo of his word reverberates across the ages and in every generation as it calls men and women to salvation. While authentic faith is dynamic and moves through time, offering Christ as its unchanging place of permanence and security, religion is idolatrously attached to sacred localities and human traditions. Continue reading

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Challenging Religion – Part Two

Photo by Marcello Newall

Photo by Marcello Newall

If you have not done so, you can read Part One here.
To read the entire article, go here: Challenging Religion.


Mercy not Sacrifice

While God temporarily accommodated to animal sacrifice in the Old Testament, the prophet Jeremiah gives us a startling revelation on his part in it: ‘For in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, I did not speak to your fathers or command them concerning burnt offerings and sacrifices.'(5) The literal rendering of the text and all the best translations interpret it as saying that God essentially had no part in the sacrificial system. Continue reading

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Challenging Religion – Part One

Afternoon Vista-By Marcello Newall

Afternoon Vista-By Marcello Newall

Defining Religion

The word religion both in modern usage, but also biblically, tends to be employed in a variety of ways. In one of the few times the word is utilised in the New Testament, James in his epistle tells us what true religion is: ‘Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.'(1) In this piece I’ll be using the word ‘religion’ in its purely negative sense as opposed to genuine spirituality or ‘faith’. Continue reading

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“Ox And Ass Before Him Bow”

Baby Jesus in a Manger

Baby Jesus in a Manger

Luke’s account of Christ’s birth doesn’t mention the presence of animals.  It just says that Mary “placed Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn” (Luke 2 v 6).  However, the fact that we are told the baby’s first crib was a feeding trough for animals, would suggest that Mary gave birth to Jesus in a type of cave or stable, where animals were kept.  Bearing in mind we are told that the inn was full and, if we assume that Joseph had a donkey, it would seem unlikely that the stable would be empty.  Whether or not that is so, Christian artwork frequently puts cows and donkeys alongside the Holy Family in the stable. Continue reading

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