Christianity When Held at Gun-Point

christian, artwork, optimism, optimism for the future, pessimism, pessimisticNote: I received the following write-up from someone in regards to a discussion on how we might work more effectively in sharing the Light of Christ to a broken world. It’s a very heartfelt letter on what our response should be in the face of difficult or tragic circumstances, which I now share with their permission. I hope you find it a blessing as much as I do!

I was wanting to write a few thoughts regarding a difficult incident I experienced one night a number of years ago. It was then that I was robbed at gunpoint with my young son nearby. After being held captive by this individual for several minutes, I was able to grab my boy and run across a four lane highway to safety – all while wondering if we’d be chased down as we ran. Thankfully, during the encounter, I was clear-headed enough to understand that the wisest course of action for this particular incident (out of concern for my son) would be to offer no resistance to the attacker.

During the time I had a gun in my back, I really did think about the possibility of being shot in the next few moments, and what this would be like for my son to witness. I prayed to the Lord, knowing that it – as all things in life are – was ultimately in His hands. Since then, I’m not going to lie, it hasn’t been easy whenever I recall those feelings or the face of the attacker. But it did gradually get better, which I owe to the many prayers of my friends and family, and to the watch-care of our Father.

A couple of verses I have found encouraging are Proverbs 18:10 (which was sent to me by a friend) and reads, “The name of the Lord is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.” I also found Genesis 3:4 to be of interest, and how the serpent said to Eve that if she ate of the fruit, she would know good and evil. As I look at the devastation and chaos of sin all around us – “knowing” evil has indeed wrought an unimaginably horrific toll upon this world. Sometimes it seems like it can be pretty easy to become calloused or dismissive of evil when there is so much in the news and in the newspaper. But then, like what happened when we were robbed, it became very personal for us. Thinking of the person who threatened me and my son – while I hope for justice, and safety for others who might encounter this dangerous individual and his cohorts – I also pray that he will come to know the Lord some day. Because let’s be honest. Reforming bad behavior starts with the heart. And the only way to truly change the heart is through Christ.

Hope for the future, hopeful, peace on earth, goodwill toward men, christian, christianity, Christian ReconstructionismFurthermore, as that evening clearly demonstrated to me, there are no shades of gray – despite what a world apart from Christ might say. There’s right, and there’s wrong. As such, that night a couple years ago has served to powerfully reinforce that as a Christian, this life is no game. There are eternal stakes here. I’m as guilty as anyone about sometimes not taking on the responsibilities I should as a Christian – looking at a world gone mad on the television or in the papers – and shaking my head wondering why the Lord doesn’t intervene. But then, He already has. He’s intervened in my life, and in the lives of millions of others, through the power of His Spirit. Hope? Change? Purpose? Our world doesn’t know the true meaning. But as Christians, WE DO! May we all endeavor to work for Him in ALL spheres of life, and be ever more effective in sharing His Truth a world so desperately in need of the brighter tomorrow that only He can bring!

Don’t forget to follow this blog or share with a friend! Also be sure to check out Axiom’s Artwork tab (where a lot of awesome christian cartoons, illustrations and resources are available), as well as the Artist Page (where you can find interviews with great Christian artists)! And don’t forget to check out our books and resources tab, as we’ve got some really great ebooks, pdf resources and outreach materials available for you to use for FREE! Until next time, have a great day!

A Christian Geek on the Death and Life of Artists

planets22016 has been a year that we’ve lost a lot of famous folks from accidents, sickness and other circumstances due to being human on planet Earth. From David Bowie (singer, songwriter and actor), to Jerry Doyle (actor, talk-show host, and Michael Garibaldi on Babylon 5), Kenny Baker (R2-D2 in Star Wars, as well as roles in Goonies and Time Bandits), Anton Yelchin (27 year old actor who played Chekov in Star Trek), Prince (Pop megastar), Muhammad Ali (Heavyweight champion of the world) and Alan Rickman (Actor and Professor Snape in Harry Potter), it always makes me kind of sad and reflective on my own life when these extremely talented and creative people pass on. For many of them, they not only helped bring beloved characters to life, created inspiring works of music, or were talented athletes – but were part of our own individual life stories through a culture that impacts in a variety of ways.

Life is Short. Over the years, as someone who has really appreciated art, creativity and the unique personalities involved in music, movies, games, books, television shows, architecture and more, I’ve seen a lot of talent pass from this earth. I mean, it really doesn’t seem all that long ago that I was a teenager and was also hearing about the death of Gene Roddenberry (creator of Star Trek), Jim Henson (creator of the Muppets) or Isaac Asimov (famous sci-fi author and philosopher). Of course in those days, it didn’t quite sink in like it does now. Sure, I’d day-dream about the future and wonder what might lay in store for me 20 years down the road. But death just wasn’t something that seemed to make as much as an impression as it does now. Perhaps it’s living long enough to see the pain in the world, and friends, family and other acquaintances who have passed on far before their time. Whatever the case, it makes me think how short life is, and that one day for each of us who are still living, our life as we know it here will come to a close…

axiomcity3What’s the Point? As they say, life is for the living. Those who have passed have had their time, and will possibly be remembered for a while. For some of those people that I’ve mentioned, I’m almost certain that living a life for our Creator and His Truth had no place in their lives. Which really makes their passing that much more of a tragedy. Sure, I’ve heard some famous people claim that the creative work they’ve done will hopefully be remembered in the years to come, and leave a lasting legacy for future generations. But even if they were remembered for a thousand, or ten thousand years, surely some future society would have their own abundance of works to occupy their time (thus caring little for work done in our time) – or the world would end eons from now and all that humanity has “achieved” would end with it. What would really be the point of anything that is done now, unless it were done for something much higher than ourselves and a pretty flimsy idea of human progress?

Pray for Artists and Creatives! That’s why when I look at people like Stan Lee (comic-book writer, and past president of Marvel Comics) or J. Michael Straczynski (creator of Babylon 5), Patrick Stewart (Picard on Star Trek The Next Generation) Bruce Campbell (actor from Burn Notice) and many others, I’m hopeful that I’ll one day see them putting their efforts towards things that are truly lasting. And if I don’t ever meet them here in this life, perhaps one day I’ll be able to meet them in Heaven. Sure, all these people have made mistakes and aren’t perfect. None of us are. But it’s never to late to turn to God and live a life for Him now – as well as in the awesome life to come. In the meantime, I’ll be sure to pray for these people. I’ll pray that somehow God will provide them opportunities to live a life for Him before life here on earth comes to a close. Because wouldn’t it be awesome to see these creative and talented people not as lost for all eternity – but as using their life and their gifts to create even more amazing and spectacular things?

As a side note, I get that a lot of people in the artistic community may have some serious concerns, confusion, or outright opposition to Christianity. Perhaps they met the wrong people, they were burned to it through some life experience it, or Christianity just was never lived, practiced or taught in such a way so as to shine forth in a darkened world. Either way, feel free to leave a comment if you have thoughts about Christianity, Christian reconstruction, actors and artists who have died in 2016, life of artists, being a Christian geek, or anything else on your mind. Also, check out some of the PDF resources AXIOM has tried to develop as a way to provide a simple introduction to living a life for God (Hope Flyer and What in the World Brochure). And lastly, be sure to check out my Artwork tab (where a lot of awesome christian cartoons, christian comics, illustrations and resources are available for sharing His Truth via social media and more), as well as the Artist Page (where you can find interviews with great Christian artists)! 

Bojidar Marinov: Christianity Cutting through the Nonsense!

Bojidar Marinov, Axe to the Root, Theonomy, Meme, Christian Reconstructionism, Dominionism, God's Law, self government, liberty, governmentTo me, it’s extremely refreshing when a Christian leader cuts through all the nonsense and seeks to shine the light and hope of Christianity to a world flailing about in darkness. That’s why I’ve had such a great time listening to Bojidar Marinov’s Axe to the Root Podcast. Here’s a guy who isn’t afraid to tackle some of the difficult, but very relevant issues facing Christians RIGHT NOW that many pastors and teachers are so very frustratingly afraid to touch. The result? A breath of fresh air in some dusty, dank cellar of religious dogma!

The Axe to the Root website explains that, “In theory, all of us know our orthodoxy. We know about the Trinity, about our redemption…But then, when most of us go out in the world and meet reality, we still view it and assess it through pagan eyes. That’s because our modern theology has become abstract, limited to the world of our personal faith, and divorced from God’s reality. Bojidar Marinov’s Axe to the Root Podcast will help you turn your abstract theology into a relevant, applied theology, by thinking covenantally about every area of life, and about every practical issue in today’s world.”

axe to the root, bojidar marinov, Christianity, Christian ReconstructionismAs a Reformed missionary to his native Bulgaria for over 10 years, Bojidar Marinov preaches and teaches the doctrines of the Reformation and a comprehensive Biblical worldview. He and his team have translated over 30,000 pages of Christian literature about the application of the Law of God in every area of man’s life and society, and published those translations online for free. He currently lives in the United States with his wife Maggie and his three children.

One of the things I think is really interesting about Bojidar is that he grew up in Communist Bulgaria, which lends to some unique insight into government, propaganda, statism, political correctness – as well as how Christianity relates to law and liberty. Some of the episodes that have been especially thought provoking are some of the following:

  • Should we have Police?
  • Who is to Blame for Today’s Effeminate Culture?
  • Why is Islam Taking over Europe? Or Is It?

Christian, cartoon, Romans 13, Ephesians 6, full armor of God, illustration, God and Government, Politics, Religious RightYou can also read more from the always interesting Bojidar Marinov at his Axe to the Root Blog, as well as discover more about Bulgarian Reformation Ministries. As I’ve listened to Bojidar speak on a variety of subjects pertaining to Christian Reconstruction for over five years now (having first being aware of him through the 2010 Christian Culture Builder from American Vision), both he and people like Joel McDurmon and Gary DeMar have inspired me to try to use art and design to share the Truth with others! As such, if you’d like to see more what I’ve been doing here on Axiom, please check out our artwork and artist interviews, as well as some of our outreach and PDF resources designed to help you be a better ambassador for Him!

Designed for Outreach: Brochure and Flyer

bboardA number of years ago, I wanted to use my graphic design skills to create a professional, easy-to-read resource I could hand out when sharing the Hope of Christ with people. I was of course aware of a number of outreach pamphlets and tracks available, but wanted to design something that was eye-catching and conveyed a message that resonated with the people I regularly encountered. I also wanted to be able to have a space where I could put contact information, as well as be easy to print out on a house-hold printer.

As a result, and through the efforts of two close friends, we created a flyer and brochure that outlined the plan of salvation, as well as common questions people might have. We also utilized research found through Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life, Hank brochureHanegraaff’s The Bible Answer Book, and Lee Strobel’s The Case for a Creator. After proofing everything and double checking our scripture verses, it was ready for use!

In the years since, we have shared these brochures and flyers in packets for the homeless, hung them up on bulletin boards and passed them out through a door-to-door ministry. They have been great tools! After recently updating the design, I thought it would be great to include them here on Axiom Illustration for you to use as well. Have fun!

You can find the PDF files for the flyer and brochure at our books and resources tab, or by clicking either of the options below!

B&WHopeFlyerpreviewPeace in our Lifetime Flyer: This flyer presents a hopeful message about how to achieve Peace in Christ. Utilizes the plan of salvation, as well as answers to common questions. Designed to be eye-catching and professional, as well as easy to print on your own household printer with minimal ink usage. Click here to access! (available in a black and white PDF, 86 KB).

ABCbrochureBWpreviewWhat in the World Brochure: This double-sided brochure presents a hopeful message regarding individual purpose in life. Utilizes the plan of salvation, as well as answers to common questions. Designed to be eye-catching and professional, as well as easy to print on your own household printer with minimal ink usage. Simply set your printer to print double sided and then make a couple folds! Click here to access! (available in a black and white PDF, 131 KB).

Christian Optimism?

christian, artwork, optimism,

Happy New Year! As we head into a new year full of promise and hope, I wanted to try to come up with a cartoon that conveyed the optimism towards the future that Christians have – but also makes a point that sometimes Christians can be a little too pessimistic as well. This isn’t to say that Christians shouldn’t be engaged and aware of what’s going on, or shy away from sharing the Truth of Christ within our community. But we also have to be careful not to get sucked into thinking the world is only getting worse. Because with Christ, our world has been getting better! Countless Christians before us have already labored in the Lord in the arts and sciences to help people in need, and billions have been saved from an eternity of darkness! Wow! Check out this great article from Christian Research Institute on The Perils of Newspaper Eschatology.

As always, don’t forget to follow our blog (so you don’t miss out on anything) or share with a friend! And be sure to check out our Artwork tab, where a lot of our awesome christian cartoons, illustrations and resources are available! Have a great day!

Remembering Christmas of 1987

christmas, illustration, 1987, christian, christianity, art, illustration, calendarMerry Christmas! I thought it would be fun to share the above picture, which I created back in 1987 at a pretty young age. I guess my parents must have really liked it, because it became a decoration that came out every year – and once again made an appearance this year at their home. You know what they say about time flying.

This Christmas I’ve thought a lot about how I looked at Christmas as a kid. Sure, like most kids, I was really excited about the presents and various traditions we did each year. Like putting up the Christmas decorations, Christmas school programs and parties, Christmas specials on TV (like the Claymation Christmas), local community events, and that feeling of excitement on Christmas Eve, and feeling like I would NEVER fall asleep. But I also really remember how excited I was for spending time with family (many of whom have now passed on), and how I loved that people genuinely seemed happy – and that for a little while at least, it really did seem like things were a little more peaceful in our world.

Hope for the future, hopeful, peace on earth, goodwill toward men, christian, christianityAs an adult, sometimes I think I’ve lost that child-like wonder. I’m also sad to say that at times, I’ve become unfortunately a little more hardened by reality – and even to the hope and power of Christ in changing our lives and our world for the better. Sometimes I think as christians, we become so distracted by newspaper headlines or the “crisis of the week”, that we forget that Christ ALONE has already powerfully changed billions of lives, and changed our world for the better in countless ways. And He will continue to do so now and in the days and years to come! Wow, such great hope for the future! How exciting, encouraging and motivating should that be for christians to get out there and be an unashamed and unapologetic light in the darkness? As I illustrated in the picture above years ago, Jesus truly is the Reason for the Season!

And in despair I bowed my head; “There is no peace on earth,” I said; “For hate is strong, and mocks the song of peace on earth, good-will to men!”

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep: “God is not dead, nor doth He sleep; The Wrong shall fail, The Right prevail, With peace on earth, good-will to men.” – I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (Luke 2:14)

Don’t forget to follow our blog, and be sure to check out our Artwork tab for awesome christian illustrations and more!

The Confusion of Humanity

Matthew 5:11, Christian, christianity, cartoon, illustration, intolerance, bigotry, self-identity, society(Click illustration for larger view of cartoon!) Matthew 5:11-12 – Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven...I titled this cartoon “The confusion of humanity” as self-identity has unfortunately become a confusing concept for some in society today. And while Christians find Truth and identity in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17 and 1 Peter 2), the rest of the world struggles in finding meaning and purpose for life. The cartoon also attempts to make a humorous point regarding those who claim to value tolerance and diversity – but end up exhibiting hostility, intolerance and outright bigotry of those who might share different views. Granted, this is no excuse for Christians to also behave rudely towards those who believe differently – but we should never shy away from being friendly ambassadors of His truth!  (Also see our cartoon: The Arrogance of Humanity)

Find our illustrations helpful? Check out our Artwork tab!