Fast Facts is a weekly email program where we provide our readers with relevant and practical resources to contend for the faith (Jude 3) and to be ready with an answer (1 Peter 3:15). We trust that these quick and helpful tools will give you greater confidence in sharing the truth of Jesus Christ.


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This Week’s Fast Facts

Fast Facts on “Where is God in the Midst of My Suffering?”

  • Questioning God in the midst of suffering is a common human reality, but God’s word reminds us of some powerful truths that can encourage and sustain us through difficult times.
  • First, God knows all about your circumstances. He is never surprised, never shocked, and never caught off guard. As Psalm 139:16 reminds, “all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.”
  • Second, God cares about the trials you’re experiencing. Psalm 139:17-18 declares, “How precious to me are your thoughts, God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them they would outnumber the grains of sand”. Have you tried counting the grains of sand at the beach lately? God is not indifferent to your suffering. You are on His mind continuously!
  • Third, God comforts with His faithful presence and gentle touch. Psalm 139:7-12 assures there is nowhere you can go to flee God’s presence; even in your darkest hour He is there with you. And verse 10 affirms, “your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.”
  • When you find yourself in the midst of the trials of life, remember: God knows, God cares, and God comforts. Trust Him!

For more information on finding hope in the midst of suffering, check out Dr. Carlson’s powerful lecture titled, Health, Wealth, and the Prosperity Gospel available in CD or MP3 in our online store.

Follow CMI on Twitter at @jasoncarlsoncmi.


This Week’s Fast Facts

Fast Facts on Advent Apologetics – December 25th as the Date of Christmas

  • There is no historical evidence that Jesus was born on December 25th. However, while this date is improbable it is not impossible. A springtime date, though, better fits the gospel accounts of the birth of Christ. So, where does the December 25th date for Christmas come from?
  • Historical evidence shows Christians observing December 25th as the date of Christ’s birth as early as the 200’s A.D. However, the first official Christmas celebration occurred on December 25, 336 A.D. after Roman Emperor Constantine’s conversion to Christianity.
  • The most likely reason the early Church chose December 25th as the date to celebrate Christ’s birth was simply because of the metaphorical significance of the winter solstice to the arrival of the Messiah (i.e. the idea of light, new life, etc.).
  • It is also possible the Church chose December 25th as a rival to certain pagan religious practices in the Roman Empire that were centered on the winter solstice and the “birth” of their sun gods (Saturnalia, Mithra, Sol Invictus, etc.).
  • Some Christians become concerned when considering the possibility that our December 25th celebration of Christmas might have any association with pagan religious practices, even if as a rival.
  • However, while it is right to be concerned as Christians about syncretism with non-Christian religious practices, we must also remember that the Church has historically viewed the reshaping of culture as a positive endeavor.
  • When it comes to our celebration of Christmas on December 25th, like Augustine of Hippo (354-430 A.D.), we can affirm that, “We hold this day holy, not like the pagans because of the birth of the sun, but because of Him who made it.”

Give the gift of apologetics this Christmas! We’ve got some great resources, like the book, Apologetics For A New Generation, available in our online store.

Follow CMI on Twitter at @jasoncarlsoncmi.









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