Blogs by Leland Maples

By Leland Maples
October 15th, 2006

The LOOPS newsletter Reflections goes to 36 states and 6 foreign countries. We have over 300 students (mostly inmates) enrolled in our Bible correspondence courses. Needless to say, our little office handles a lot of correspondence. Much of our time is used in answering questions. These questions range from deeper theological questions to inquiries about the contemporary church movement. Many people seem to think all inmates are backward and stupid, but believe me, that is not the case. Television, good libraries and websites have brought the average prison inmate equal or even ahead of...

By Leland Maples
November 15th, 2006

What is this thing called “love?”

One of the signs of the last days is “misplaced love.”

“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves…” 2 Timothy 3:1-2.

Everywhere we turn we find the proliferating of self-love. It is as prominent in Christian bookstores as it is in New Age circles. The “love” word is used in various ways, from God’s love to promiscuous sex. Even the Greek scholars (?) attempting to teach that “agape love” is superior have failed to check out the Greek in Matthew 5:46, 24:12; Luke 6:32,...

By Leland Maples
January 15th, 2007

Time does fly, but only as you look back on it. 2006 has been like most years, both bitter and sweet. We have buried some loved ones, including my Mother. We have seen good friends stumble and fall back into the prison system. We see truth continue to be sacrificed for profit, power and prestige. We keep reading about the masses leaving the ministry, churches going hip-hop trying to stave off their failure. Every few months we have another “fantastic” bible that is easier to read and understand, totally ignoring the fact that unless the Holy Spirit teaches us, we will still be without...

By Leland Maples
February 15th, 2007

I have been thumbing through my Bible trying to find verses that instruct us to sneak up on lost people. Today’s mainline churches are going incognito and wearing camouflage! When a law enforcement officer goes undercover, he does so to impersonate the bad guys. Why would a Christian do that? As best I understand it, God wants us to “come out from among them,” not imitate them.

Recently in our newspaper there was an article about Christian (?) rock (an oxymoron, if I ever heard one.) One of the musicians was quoted, “We’re Christian…but we don’t want to be labeled.” As far as I know...

By Leland Maples
March 16th, 2007

Much is being written and spoken today about “praise and worship.” I am bad about accepting things, especially things issuing from Christian friends and reputable Christian leaders. It usually takes some traumatic event or conflict before I research anything on my own. It is obvious that “praise and worship” means different things to different people, but it is just as obvious that everyone seems to think it involves music of some kind.

Bible teachers speak of “the first mention principle,” i.e., the way a word is used the first time reveals the basic meaning of that word throughout...

By Leland Maples
May 15th, 2007

A pastor friend of mine related this story. On their way home from church one Sunday, his ten year old daughter quizzed him. She said, “Daddy, that story you told today…was that really true or was it just preaching?” A little girl, wise beyond her years; for so much of what we hear as preaching may be just that…preaching, not truth!

How about those who run orphan’s ministries? Do they pull at your heartstrings to give while they live in wealth? If they loved those children so much wouldn’t you think they would forgo those big salaries and perks and use them for the kids? Some try to...

By Leland Maples
June 15th, 2007

We live in unusual and interesting times. Never have things moved so fast around us. It took right at 5900 years for transportation to advance from animals to automobiles. In a 100 years man has achieved speed faster than sound, traveled to destinations as far as the moon and changed the English Bible over 200 times. In less than 50 years we have seen the most prosperous and advanced civilizations legalize murdering innocent babies, approve same sex marriages and strive to remove God and the Ten Commandments from our society. Man keeps contradicting himself. One day he is saying that Jesus...

By Leland Maples
July 15th, 2007

James, the Lord’s brother, in writing to the twelve tribes of Israel scattered everywhere, said,

“Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, to visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.” James 1:27

You will notice that this statement has nothing to do with Christianity. The verse is not speaking of religion in general because many religions are built upon hate and warfare. If you want to find the true nature of any religion or belief you must evaluate them in their dominance. If you want to learn the...

By Leland Maples
August 16th, 2007

In Acts 15 we have an account of a harsh conflict between two of God’s children, Paul and Barnabas. Barnabas first appears in Acts 4:36 as one who sold his land and gave the proceeds to the apostles. The next time he appears is in defense of Paul’s conversion (Acts 9:27.) In Acts 11:22-26 Barnabas was sent by the church at Jerusalem to disciple new converts at Antioch. He thought of Paul and brought him to join in this ministry. For the next few years, it seems Paul and Barnabas were inseparable, facing tribulation, victories, joys and defeats. Barnabas took his nephew, John Mark, on one...

By Leland Maples
September 15th, 2007

The current fad among hip-hop Christendom is “reaching the youth.” Maybe we should ask ourselves, “For what purpose are we trying to reaching them?” Are we trying to get them saved? Are we trying to get their lives changed for Christ’s sake?

It is interesting that Peter, Paul, John or Jesus never had a “youth movement.” They ministered to all ages and cultures. Peter never started a Fisherman’s Church nor did Paul start an Ex-Pharisee Church. Actually the church placed more emphasis upon the older than on the younger. The churches ordained “elders,” not “young’uns.” The command to “...