Archive for September, 2009

Gospel-Powered Parenting

30 September 2009

This looks to be a great book and I’m looking forward to digging in to it. You can read more about it HERE, and an interview with the author HERE.I hope to give some feedback on it in the weeks ahead.

McCheyne on the first and last Adam

24 September 2009

The first was fair, coming from the hand of God; the second is altogether lovely.

The first was made in the likeness/image of God; the second is God himself, the Lord of heaven.

The first was full of heavenly wisdom, so that he named all the creatures as they came; but in the second are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

The first was the head of the whole human race so that in him they stood, and in him they fell; the second is offered as a new head to every creature.

~ from The obedience and disobedience of one (with light editing)

Temptation

22 September 2009

Last week and the two coming weeks our pastor is speaking on spiritual warfare. I was away the first week where he looked at 2 Cor 10.1-5, which led into this miniseries. The question going through my mind over and over this last week (which maybe was answered the week I was away) was ‘How?’, ‘How are people tempted? How am I tempted?’ And the thought that kept coming into my head was, ‘People need to read The Screwtape Letters.’ Sadly, much of evangelicalism has a distorted view of how Satan works. He does not parade as a goblin, but as an angel of light.

Well, it was interesting to see a dramatized reading of this will be available in October. It looks to be quite well done, having Andy Serkis playing Screwtape.

Baptism views

18 September 2009

Baptism: Three Views just arrived from Amazon yesterday. I’ve been looking forward to this for some time. I had a friend tell me some years ago that I would change my view if I sat in on Sinclair Ferguson’s lectures on baptism. He presents the paedobaptist view in this book, which I guess is as close as I’ll get to his lectures. Entering in to this debate I appreciate the quote from Rabbi Duncan that Ferguson gives at the beginning of his chapter, “I am first a Christian, next a Catholic, then a Calvinist, fourth a Paedobaptist and finally a Presbyterian.” As much as I respect and have continuously benefited from Ferguson, I don’t imagine being persuaded. Some months back I read R. Scott Clark’s series of posts on paedobaptism and didn’t find them convincing. I hesitate to enter into debate on the subject. It is surely important, though secondary. Perhaps I’ll post some thoughts on baptism in the days ahead.

Pro-Life, at any age

17 September 2009

A peaceful 63 year-old pro-life protester was recently murdered. The most insightful thought from American Spectator writer David Bass following this tragedy:

But the non-existent response from abortion advocates over the cold-blooded murder of Pouillon – a man standing up for life and exercising his constitutional rights – should give us pause.

Could be that one side in this debate does, in fact, value human life more than the other.

It seems that life, at any age, is becoming of less value in the mainstream. This is one reason why it is so important to understand what it means to be made in the image of God.

London, John Calvin, and rock ‘n roll

11 September 2009

This weekend I’m off to preach down in London. Providentially there is a wee two day conference on John Calvin being put on by the John Owen Centre in north London. I hope to post some reviews/feedback when I return middle of next week.

_largethumb_PGG259_BKIn other providential news, I’ve managed to get a killer deal on my first electric guitar. It was listed on ebay and was ‘pick-up’ only, no posting allowed. Well, the chap lives 5 minutes from King’s Cross train station where I’ll be arriving tomorrow night. It’s a small guy, and black (I’ve always wanted a black guitar) and the amp is built into it, so just take it and go.

Government in the home

10 September 2009

THIS is incredible. The government telling a mother she cannot homeschool her child because the child is reflecting her religious beliefs. What’s next? Telling us what not to think or believe?

Read your bible Mr Flores

10 September 2009

After being arrested for hijacking an airplane in Cancun ‘pastor’ Flores said to his wife, “Don’t worry if they put me in jail; (it will be) glory to God.” All his actions have done is to bring the name of Christ, which he claims, into the dirt. No wonder the world doesn’t rightly understand Christ and Christianity.

Hoping in this life

10 September 2009

Doing the M’Cheyne read through this year. Today was 1 Corinthians 15. A particular verse stood out to me this morning. It caused me to think of a number of groups who focus on the ‘now’ in exclusion to the ‘not yet.’ (ie – different strains of emergent, the social gospel, etc.). For some the Kingdom is here and now (exclusively) and to focus on another world to come is derided as platonism or some other philosophical jargon.

If in this life only we have hoped in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied. 15.19

It is only when our hope is in the Lord of eternal life and the world to come that what we do in this world is never vain. 15.58

Why do we prefer broken cisterns?

8 September 2009

Why do we choose what can last but an hour
Before we must leave it behind?
Why do possessions exert brutal power
To render us harsh and unkind?
Why do mere things have the lure of a flower
Whose scent makes us selfish and blind?
The cisterns run dry, and sour is our breath;
We dwell in the valley of death.

Why is betrayal attractive to us
Who often are hurt and betrayed?
Why barter faithful devotion for lust,
Integrity cast far away?
Why do our dreams, then our deeds, beggar trust,
Our guilt far too heavy to pay?
The cisterns run dry, and sour is our breath;
We dwell in the valley of death.

Why do we stubbornly act out a role,
Convincing the world that we’ve won?
Why for mere winning will we sell our soul,
In order to be number one?
Why sear our conscience so we’re in control –
Despairing of what we’ve become?
The cisterns run dry, and sour is our breath;
We dwell in the valley of death.

O Jesus –

Why do you promise to quench all our thirst,
When we have despised all your ways?
Why do you rescue the damned and the cursed,
By dying our death in our place?
Why do you transform our hearts till they burst
With vibrant expressions of praise?
The well flows with life – and we’re satisfied –
The fountain that flows from your side.

~ D A Carson