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5 Sep 1944. U.S.S. Ocelot. Pearl Harbor. Lt. (jg) Steingart (Navy dentist). His wife Eleanor wanted a fruit salad pin. He wrote: On liberty "spent morning looking ... there ain't no such animule." Click or tap to read the entire letter. http://wwiinavydentist.blogspot.com/2018/04/pearl-harbor-no-such-animule.html
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Pearl Harbor--No Such Animule
Pearl Harbor--No Such Animule
wwiinavydentist.blogspot.com

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4 Sep 1944. U.S.S. Ocelot. Pearl Harbor. Lt. (jg) Steingart (Navy dentist) "what shall I write about? The weather is constant, warm with blue skies ... occasional white clouds. No rain ... Evenings are cool and comfortable. I'm well and miss you and the kids terribly... I can repeat the above day in and day out. The censors will pass that ..." https://wwiinavydentist.blogspot.com/2018/04/pearl-harbor-enlightening.html
Pearl Harbor--Enlightening
Pearl Harbor--Enlightening
wwiinavydentist.blogspot.com

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1 Sep 1944. U.S.S. Ocelot. Pearl Harbor. Lt. (jg) Steingart (Navy dentist) wrote: "During the night we were attacked ... you should have heard the "bitching" at breakfast ... mosquitoes. Anyway they bit me here and there and most everywhere except?" Click or tap to read the entire letter. http://wwiinavydentist.blogspot.com/2018/04/pearl-harbor-mosquitos.html
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Pearl Harbor--Attacked
Pearl Harbor--Attacked
wwiinavydentist.blogspot.com

How to share the gospel with atheists

Last week I sat next to James on a flight from St. Louis to Denver. As we talked the subject turned to spirituality and religion. I confessed that I was a preacher and he confessed he was an atheist. What unfolded on the rest of the flight was a deep, thought-provocative, laughter-laced gospel conversation.
Over the years I’ve had the privilege of engaging many atheists like James in various settings. I’ve discovered five helpful tips when sharing the gospel with someone who claims to not believe in God.

1. Don’t be shocked and do ask tons of questions:

Some atheists like to shock believers with the fact that they don’t believe in God. This brand of atheist pulls the pin on the “there is no God” grenade and drops it in the middle of the conversation, expecting believers to run for cover.
Don’t be phased. As a matter of fact start asking questions about their atheism. Find out what they mean by atheism (some are agnostics but call themselves atheists). Ask questions about their background.
And remember that, as you ask questions, your goal is not to trap them but to understand them. Find out areas where you agree. Just like Paul found common ground with the athenians when he discovered an altar “to the unknown God” we can find common ground in a mutual rejection of legalistic religion, a passion for science and reason and, usually, an overall positive view of the historic Jesus.
Although James spoke somewhat negatively of religion he spoke well of Jesus. While he didn’t view Jesus as the Son of God he did perceive him as an enlightened soul. At the minimum that was something I could build on in making my own case for Christ.

2. Listen deeply for the real “why”:

Often atheists have a reason (other than “reason“) for becoming atheists. Listen for it. Sometimes it’s anger over losing a loved one or because they were hurt by the church in some way. Sometimes there other reasons, like the fact that they are afraid of the truth, because if they embraced the truth, they would be submitted to God, and would not be free as they were before; so they prefer to embrace a lie which makes them freer. Whatever the reason, there’s always a “why” behind the lie they are embracing.
In John 4 Jesus masterfully attacked the why behind the lie that the woman at the well was embracing. She was not an atheist but a hedonist who thought that satisfaction could be found if she finally found the right husband. But Jesus offers her living water to satisfy her deepest needs and, finally, her thirst was fully quenched.
James shared with me about his upbringing in England and his regular attendance at The Church of England. He told me about how his wife had left him and how he could only see his kids every other weekend. James shared how he reads at least a book a week and how he loses himself in novels.
As he shared I couldn’t quite nail why he was an atheist but I could sense that he was a lonely man. My heart went out to him and I think he could sense my sympathy.

3. Connect relationally:

Atheists are real people with real feelings. They laugh, cry, talk and connect like anyone else. I think that too many times believers treat atheists as objects and not people.
James and I joked together as we sparred each other. I listened to him and he listened to me. Bottom line is that I like James. He is an interesting guy with an interesting story.
We should heed Paul’s reminder to Timothy about how to deal with those who disagree with us theologically,
“Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels. And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.” (2 Timothy 2:23-26)

4. They do believe in God:

There are no people who totally rejects the existence of God. Sure, there are many who claim that God’s existence is lie but they really do believe there’s a God.
Why? Because Scripture makes it clear in that there are no real atheists:
"For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse. For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools." (Romans 1:18-22)
They may try to suppress their belief in God but, sooner or later in the discussion, atheists say something like, “well if God is so good then why does he allow…” This is the point in the conversation where they have “forgotten” their atheism and revealed some of their challenges with, not the reality of God, but the nature of God.
When you assume that an atheist does really believe in the existence of God it gives you the freedom not to have to prove God’s existence but to share God’s story. You can be sure that, the gospel is churning in the soul of the atheist.

5. Frame the gospel as a love story (that just happens to be true):

When I shared the gospel with James I wasn’t trying to prove God’s existence, I was simply sharing the story of God’s love. I said something like, “James, at the core of Christianity is a love story. Jesus put it this way, "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son that whoever believes in him will not perish but has everlasting life." (John 3:16)
I could tell that James was intrigued by this view. He listened respectfully and asked thoughtful questions.
Yes, I dipped into some apologetics at this point (C.S. Lewis’ Lord, lunatic or liar argument, teleological argument, etc.) but only after I had framed the gospel as a love story. In the words of my friend Bill Jack, too many times too many believers use apologetics as a sledge hammer instead of a crowbar to pry open closed minds. As a result the conversation turns argumentative instead of respectful.
James and I had a respectful conversation where I heard him and he heard the good news of Jesus. My job is not to lead him to Jesus but to “set forth the truth plainly” and let the Spirit of God continues his work.
James didn’t say the sinner’s prayer when the plane pulled up to the gate after landing. But I believe that somewhere between Denver and St. Louis the Spirit of God nudged him closer to Jesus. It is my prayer that, in God’s perfect time, he will cross the line of faith and receive Jesus as his Savior.

What is the soul? What is the spirit of man?

Both the animal and man are living beings. Being living beings are animated beings, hence souls. The soul is the essence of any living being that moves. In fact, the Hebrew term nephesh, from which it is translated the word "soul", is used to refers to both to animals (see Genesis 1:24) and humans (see Genesis 2:7).
Like man, the animal has a less developed brain, which does not allow it to conceive the existence of God, so it can not "connect" with God, unlike the man that has such a brain to allow him to conceive the creator's existence. This is the Spirit, which the animal does not possess. The Spirit is simply the concept that identifies the relationship that man can have with God. The soul and the Spirit are not parts that after death go literally somewhere waiting for the resurrection.

And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. (Matthew 10:28)

Those who kill/destroy the body are the men, even though it's always God who decides if one must die or not in every circumstance. He who can kill/destroy both soul and body in hell is God. The example that can be made is when the disciples went to evangelize at the cost of their lives. Those who killed them, opposed to Christianity, were those who kill/destroy the body but can not kill/destroy the soul. People's choices determine their fate, which could be eternal life or eternal death. God will kill/destroy the soul and the body of all the unjust resurrected in the second resurrection. Matthew 10:28 does not want to tell us that after death the soul goes literally somewhere waiting for the resurrection. The correct interpretation is that those who will inherit eternal life will be resurrected in the first resurrection with a body, to live forever in the new earth. The bodies of people still alive at Christ's return will be changed to continue to live forever in the new earth (1 Corinthians 15:51-52).
Those who will not inherit eternal life will be resurrected in the second resurrection with a body to die forever, because they will be hurt by the second death, which symbolically is the lake of fire, the hell or the eternal fire (Revelation 2:11; Revelation 21:8; Revelation 20:14; Matthew 5:30; Matthew 25:41). I want to point out that the word "hell" in Matthew 10:28, as well as in other verses, is translated from the Greek "gehenna". People themselves are souls. Animals too are souls.
People who will resurrect with the body, will consequently be body and soul, because the persons that had the first body, are the same persons who will have the second body in the resurrection. When the body of the unjust resurrected in the second resurrection will be killed/destroyed, the soul too will be automatically killed/destroyed, because those unjust will never live again. They will not go to some other dimension where will suffer for all eternity. Their punishment is simply eternal death.

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30 Aug 1944. U.S.S. Ocelot. Pearl Harbor. Lt. (jg) Steingart (Navy dentist) wrote "yesterday's letter was slightly cut up just because I suggested the * we would * Sorry!" This letter was * (censored) too. Click or tap to read the cut up letter. https://wwiinavydentist.blogspot.com/2018/04/peal-harbor-cut-up.html
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Peal Harbor--Cut Up
Peal Harbor--Cut Up
wwiinavydentist.blogspot.com

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Cuartel General de la Gestapo
Cuartel General de la Gestapo
Cuartel General de la Gestapo
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29 Aug 1944. U.S.S. Ocelot. Pearl Harbor. Lt. (jg) Steingart (Navy dentist) wrote:" Yesterday was just another day. The usual routine of eating, working and loafing ...Sweetheart your last letters sounded ... so unhappy ... This mess will be over soon we'll have ... a swell second honeymoon." The censor cut some sentences out of the letter. Click or tap to read it. http://wwiinavydentist.blogspot.com/2018/04/pearl-harbor-another-day.html
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Pearl Harbor--Another Day
Pearl Harbor--Another Day
wwiinavydentist.blogspot.com

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What was the main cause of death of inmates in the concentration camps?

a) Execution.

b) Illness and hunger.

c) Other causes.

Correct answer: b) Illness and hunger.

The volume of valid scientific evidence and beyond a reasonable doubt shows that the vast majority of deaths were due to the disease. Typhus, a disease transmitted by lice, which was often lethal at the time, reached epidemic proportions throughout Europe during the 1940s and became an even greater problem within the camps towards the end of the war, as direct result of allied bombing of the German supply routes that were used to transport food, medicine and other supplies to the camps. Therefore, the horrible conditions that the prisoners were forced to endure towards the end of the war, was largely the fault of the allies, and NOT to any genocidal agenda on the part of the Germans. The camps had theaters, swimming pools, soccer fields, post office so that the prisoners could communicate with the outside world, kindergarten, artistic and musical recreations, and even a brothel, they had high quality sanitary facilities, which is why the clothes of the prisoners were removed and disinfected with Ziclon B

In addition, there is little evidence of mistreatment of prisoners by the Schutzstaffel (SS) squad and there is not the slightest evidence that at least one person has died from exposure to hydrogen cyanide, gas produced from Zyklon B granules that was used for the disinfection of bedding, clothing and other items. Unknown to many is the fact that autopsies were performed on a large number of corpses, after the fields were released. These documents were not introduced as evidence during the Nuremberg circus trial. The Institute for Historical Review has said the following about Dr. Charles Larson, a pathologist and member of the "War Crimes Investigation Team of the United States," who performed hundreds of autopsies on corpses in the concentration camps:

"When American and British forces seized western and central Germany in the spring of 1945, they were followed by troops charged with discovering and protecting any evidence of German war crimes.

Among them was Dr. Charles Larson, one of the leading forensic pathologists in the United States, who was assigned to the US Army Judge Department.

As part of a US War Crimes Investigation Team, Dr. Larson performed autopsies in Dachau and twenty other German camps, examining more than 100 corpses in a few days. After his grim job in Dachau, he was interrogated for three days by US Army prosecutors.

What were Dr. Larson's discoveries? In an interview with a newspaper in 1980, he said:

"What we have heard is that six million Jews were exterminated. Part of that is a deception. "And what part was the deception? Dr. Larson, who told his biographer that to his knowledge he "was the only forensic pathologist on guard throughout the European theater" of Allied military operations, confirmed that "there was never a case of [death by] poisonous gas discovered. "
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28 Aug 1944. U.S.S. Ocelot. Pearl Harbor. Lt. (jg) Steingart (Navy dentist) wrote: I met ... an old maid ... and her mother... what there is to tell can't be told because of censorship ... I get up, shower, shave, eat breakfast and then to work. At noon, dinner, ... checkers and more work. Then supper and a social hour in the ward room. Movies at 7:45 PM ... Then back to the ward room for awhile and so to bed. Interesting isn't it? Click or tap to read the entire letter. https://wwiinavydentist.blogspot.com/2018/04/pearl-harbor-old-maid-and-checkers.html
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