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What I Read Online – 03/27/2013 (a.m.)

27 Mar
    • And yet John the Baptist, popular though he was, ended up in prison. Why?

       

      Because of his comments on marriage.

    • Except John the Baptist. ‘It is not lawful for you to have her’ John simply said.
    • And yet he ended up imprisoned, and ultimately being beheaded, for speaking God’s truth publicly about marriage.
    • Yet speaking the truth in love on this issue, and being persecuted for it, means standing in direct descent to John the Baptist, who was brutality executed for publicly declaring God’s word on marriage.
    • First of all, let’s be clear that it’s not only the Old Testament that has proscriptions about homosexuality.
    • Once you grant the main premise of the Bible—about the surpassing significance of Christ and his salvation—then all the various parts of the Bible make sense. Because of Christ, the ceremonial law is repealed. Because of Christ the church is no longer a nation-state imposing civil penalties. It all falls into place. However, if you reject the idea of Christ as Son of God and Savior, then, of course, the Bible is at best a mish-mash containing some inspiration and wisdom, but most of it would have to be rejected as foolish or erroneous.
    • So where does this leave us? There are only two possibilities. If Christ is God, then this way of reading the Bible makes sense and is perfectly consistent with its premise. The other possibility is that you reject Christianity’s basic thesis—you don’t believe Jesus was the resurrected Son of God—and then the Bible is no sure guide for you about much of anything. But the one thing you can’t really say in fairness is that Christians are being inconsistent with their beliefs to accept the moral statements in the Old Testament while not practicing other ones.
    • One way to respond to the charge of inconsistency may be to ask a counter-question—“Are you asking me to deny the very heart of my Christian beliefs?” If you are asked, “Why do you say that?” you could respond, “If I believe Jesus is the the resurrected Son of God, I can’t follow all the ‘clean laws’ of diet and practice, and I can’t offer animal sacrifices. All that would be to deny the power of Christ’s death on the cross. And so those who really believe in Christ must follow some Old Testament texts and not others.”
    • “Did she or did she not restart the computer?” asked Labour Leader David Shearer. “Or did she merely put the computer into sleep mode and then claim that she had restarted it? And if that is the case, does the Prime Minister still have confidence in her to be a minister?”
    • First is Isaiah 53, that famous text that we so often like to appeal to for the death of Christ. Here we discover that this suffering servant will be crushed for our iniquities (53:5). But Isaiah goes on to say “Yet it was the will of the Lord to crush him; he has put him to grief; when his soul makes an offering for guilt, he shall see his offspring; he shall prolong his days; the will of the Lord shall prosper his hand” (53:10b).
    • Second, consider Psalm 16:8-11. Here the psalmist sets the Lord before him, as his rock and assurance, his gladness, joy, and security. He takes comfort knowing that God will not abandon his soul to Sheol or “let your holy one see corruption.” This psalm, however, not only provides future hope to the Israelite in David’s day, but it also is applied to Christ, even predicting his resurrection.
    • Third is Jonah 1:17, and perhaps the most surprising OT passage of all.
    • Check out the record hereYou can preorder it now and receive the full record as a digital download immediately at our bandcamp page.

       

    • Robert Duncan Culver is the only surviving founding member of the Evangelical Theological Society
    • Most notably, Culver is the author of the massive 1200-page theology published in 2005 by Christian Focus, Systematic Theology: Biblical & Historical, the book he moved to rural Minnesota to work on, and gave over a dozen years to writing.
    • Our home was in Libertyville, Illinois, eight or nine miles from Trinity. When I drove up I noticed all window blinds were drawn and doors locked. I expected the worst, broke the window to the basement level door, reached through and unlocked the door, walked through the main level to our bedroom on the second floor. There I found Arlene in our bed, cold and dead, hair dressed for Sunday church. So I knew she had died Saturday evening after bedtime. It was now late Monday afternoon, she had been dead for part of Saturday, all of Sunday, and part of Monday. The funeral was late in the week.

         

    • Throughout the 1990s, his typical day involved waking early for coffee, working on the theology book until mid morning, when Celeste would bring him a meal. Then he’d return to writing until mid afternoon and use the rest of the day for chores around the farmhouse and other odds and ends. He wrote out his chapters on lined tablet pages, and Celeste did the arduous work of putting every line into type — sometimes two or three times.
    • “The volume was written and copyrighted in the United States, edited in England, printed and bound in Germany, published in Scotland, and ‘providenced’ in heaven before the foundation of the world.”
    • Not only did the Culvers “not neglect to show hospitality to strangers” (Hebrews 13:2), but they impressed on us the beauty and truth of Jesus being “the same yesterday and today and forever” (Hebrews 13:8).

        

    • Remember your leaders” (Hebrews 13:7) is a fitting charge to those of us so prone to chronological snobbery
    • It’s deeply comforting to know that the truths about God we hold dear aren’t only held by a group of born-again Boomers ahead of us, but were held by men like Culver, born 30 years before the Pipers and Carsons. And Culver’s still living to provide evidence — at least for Tony and me — how an age difference of over six decades can be bridged so quickly by having the unchanging Jesus in common.

        

    • A note to young theological journalists: let’s see more stories like this. It’s a way to learn from the past, establish unexpected friendship, honor our elders, and produce pieces worth reading
    • Twenty years ago today—March 26, 1993-R. Albert Mohler Jr. (age 33) was elected president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, the flagship school of the Southern Baptist Convention.

       

    • The 1689 Confession itself best defines a Reformed Baptist Church.  It is a positive voice for what we believe and a strong defense against error
    • Our Confession is the best safeguard for the local congregation and for Reformed Baptists as a whole.  That is not to say, that the wording cannot be brought up to date.  Stan Reeves has done a good service with his modern update which can be of great benefit to the man in the pew.  But with the Confession accepted as a whole, we have the advantage of standing on the shoulders of giants
    • I am certain that those who teach “sanctification by revisiting justification” have heard that message as a new and joyous song that sanctifies them. May Jesus Christ be praised! Perhaps God has been liberating them from a ponderous Christianity that seemed to breed a weight of failure to perform, of failure to live up to expectations, of failure to accomplish all that needs doing, and of judgmentalism toward others who fail. May the God of mercies be praised! But let’s not forget to learn all the other sweet and joyous songs. And let’s learn the darker notes of lamentation and the blues. Let’s learn the call to action in work songs and marching music. And let’s learn everything else that comports with and nourishes life in Christ.

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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Posted by on 27/03/2013 in Current Issues

 

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