What I Read Online – 03/28/2013 (p.m.)

29 Mar
    • People do need more of the facts. They do need their barriers to be knocked down. And evidence and argument are sometimes effective tools (I’m told) for that work. But I think it’s theologically and evangelistically unhealthy to forget that a person’s loves are more ultimate than his thoughts.
    • One of the most common claims by some critics of the New Testament canon is that apocryphal writings, particularly Gospels, were as common and widely used as the NT writings.
    • Frequency of citation. While scholars typically focus on whether apocryphal books are cited, they have not paid sufficient attention to how often they are cited in comparison to the canonical writings. When those data are considered, the disparity between apocryphal and canonical writings becomes even more evident.
    • Rarely. In a few instances, it seems that books like the Shepherd of Hermas or the Epistle of Barnabas were regarded as having a scriptural status. But this was a small minority view. When we examine which books early Christians were not simply using but books they actually regarded as Scripture, then the canonical books are far and away the most popular. This is confirmed by the fact that there was a “core” canon of books in place by the middle of the second century.
    • The simple fact is that the church is really very often a walking contradiction. We are redeemed saints, and we are redeemed sinners.
    • First, he says, “Be completely humble.” Humility, “lowliness of mind” as the King James version translates it, a naturally self-effacing disposition.
    • Second, “be gentle.”
    • Third, “with patience”
    •  Finally, he commands us to “bear with one another in love.”
    • And notice that the apostle is not calling us here to “establish” unity. No, he calls us to “keep” it, to guard and protect it. Our unity in Christ is already an established fact.
    • The words are great and well-thought out (each one is inspired by a different part of the gospel of Luke), and the musicianship on each album is excellent. So if this were an album just to listen to, I’d be over the moon with it.
    • The melodies in quite a few of these songs (e.g. “Lift Up Your Head”, “Come to the Feast”, “For Your Sake”) have that singer-songwriter feel to it that make them very easy to listen to, but too sophisticated and for the average churchgoer to pick up easily (the wide vocal range of some of the songs don’t help either). The one exception so far which stuck out as quite singable is “Not in Me” by Eric Schumacher and David Ward, perhaps because of its simple tune and hymn meter.
    • Also if you’re someone with a strong preference for one musical style, you’ll either love this album or be turned off before the first track is over.
    • Trinity College has been heavily criticised for agreeing to host a conference organised by Christian Concern, a lobby group which has previously come under fire for what some people have interpreted as homophobia.
    • Nevertheless, the event began yesterday in Trinity with a seminar on ‘How To Engage with Secular Culture’.  The conference, which has paid to be hosted, lasts three days and is expected to end tomorrow, aims to prepare delegates for ‘servant-hearted, Christ-centred leadership in public life’, according to their website.
    • “The Christian perspective that Christian Concern offers probably wouldn’t be recognised by Christians in Trinity or across Oxford…  we’re much more about celebrating the inclusiveness of Christianity.”
    • Time and time again, the scenario plays out exactly the same: a young couple, in premarital counseling. The man has just owned up to his sexual past, and is shocked and confused by his future wife’s devastated reaction. Whatever he might have said, it’s clear that he had no sense that his sins were not just wrong, but also a betrayal.

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

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Posted by on 29/03/2013 in Current Issues


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