What I Read Online – 11/26/2013 (a.m.)

26 Nov
    • To use this, go to Settings, tap “General,” then “Accessibility,” and switch on “Invert Colors.” Even better, go to Settings, tap “General,” then “Accessibility” and “Accessibility Shortcut.” There you will see the option to set a triple-click of the home button to invert the colours. Now, right before you preach, simply triple-click and you will have a reversed screen.
    • The effect on the unwary reader can be frankly bewildering. After a deceptively leisurely (by his standards, at least) introductory chapter, O’Donovan proceeds, in an eighteen-page section on “Moral Thinking” of simply dizzying density, to unfold, dismantle, and reconstruct from the ground up what seems like nearly all the foundational categories and questions of philosophical ethics. The reader foolish enough to attempt this whole section at one go is likely to find himself gasping for breath at the end of it.
    • First, authoritarianism is seen in leaders who go beyond the authority granted to them by God in His word.
    • A presentation as part of a panel on “Pedagogical Best Practices for the Doctrine of Inerrancy,” 1:00pm to 4:10pm, Nov. 21, 2013, at the annual meeting of the Evangelical Theological Society, Baltimore, MD. Moderated by Jason Oakes. A PDF version of this response can be downloaded here.]
    • With the ascendancy of same-sex marriage, a recent and popular incarnation is the pro-same-sex marriage Jesus. Proponents of same-sex marriage have wisely attached their cause to the Son of God.
    • The problem, however, is that the presentation given by the likes of Bell and other Christians looking for a way to bend the Christian narrative toward same-sex marriage, is its revisionist arc. It’s a telling of the Christian story that chafes against “traditional” teachings but also against repentance.
    • The irony is that Jesus’ silence on gay marriage is against a backdrop that assumes and celebrates the picture of marriage as a major storyline of Scripture—a storyline that leads to Christ.
    • Complementarity; exclusivity; permanency; orientation towards children—these are the norms of marriage that see a man and woman come together as husband and wife to be father and mother to any children their union produces. Each norm comes from Jesus himself and confirms the timeless principle that if marriage is to be based on principle, it must conform to the demands of sound logic.
    • If Christians are to support same-sex marriage, they should do so by way of intellectual honesty and acknowledge their abandonment of biblical authority, for there is no reasonable way to deduce from Scripture an exegetical case for same-sex marriage.
    • Preaching is a theological act. The preacher finds his counterpart not in the lecture theatre or the classroom or, most ghastly of all, on the stand-up comedy circuit. He finds him in the Old Testament prophets, bringing a confrontational word from the Lord which explains reality and demands a response. 
    • The loss of the evening service in many churches is not simply a sad testimony to the loss of the Lord’s Day; it also limits preaching opportunities for those in training. Churches need to do a better job of encouraging those who think they might be called as preachers to test their gifts, perhaps at Sunday afternoon services at care homes or elsewhere. Creative thinking is required.
    • Third, there is the relativizing of the preached word and the growth of emphasis on one-to-one counseling. I am not here denying the usefulness of one-to-one counseling but I am saying that most problems which most of us have should be dealt with quite adequately by the public proclamation of God’s word.
    • preachers should be taught to preach with the confidence that they will impact individuals for the good as they speak to all from the pulpit.
    • A few years ago, I asked a group of students who their favourite model preacher was. Not one of them mentioned any of the pastors under whose care they had grown up.
    • Every preacher needs to find his own voice
    • if your church culture projects such a high view of ministry that congregations are left thinking that ordained ministry is the only worthwhile calling for a Christian man, the unfortunate consequence is that men who lack the basic skills to be ministers will nonetheless feel the need to be ministers in order to serve in a useful capacity. And men in the ministry who really lack the personal skills necessary to preach will not preach well. We need churches where a healthy understanding of general Christian vocation is taught and cultivated so that men do not feel such pressure.
    • A failure to have a clear structure.
    • A failure to know or understand the congregation.
    • A failure to know what to leave out.
    • I believe that parents have a duty to pastor their homes well, rather than simply leave all spiritual disciplines and teaching up to the local church.
    • Our children need to experience and participate in (like we do) the building up of the saints in the corporate gathering through hearing God’s Word preached, singing God’s Word back to Him and to each other in praise, praying and confessing our sins together and being continually assured of God’s glorious Gospel of grace toward sinners.
    • Bobby and I are very intentional about being present at home with the boys, and we are diligent to spend time together praying and reading God’s Word before and after meals (it’s good to gather around the table!). As the boys have gotten older and are participating in more extra-curricular activities, we have to be even more guarded and disciplined in our family devotional life.
    • I’m not just frustrated, I’m appalled: all this tie-in merchandise declaws the story of The Hunger Games, in much the same way that the actual affluent Capitol in the books declaws the seriousness of the “real” Hunger Games—a forced gladiatorial battle between teenagers—by staging flashy weeks-long television specials around it in order to distract from the horror of juvenile carnage by making it entertaining.
    • Here’s what’s more terrifying. This is the second movie in the franchise, and the second time there’s been tie-in merchandise like this, which has emerged to very little criticism. One can only presume it’s being sold because it sold so well last time around. Even the forthcoming final film in the trilogy (like Twilight and Harry Potter) is being split into two parts to maximize profits.


        They give us what we ask for. Bread and circuses. Chocolate and theme parks.


        Remember who the real enemy is.

    • In sum, the film would be good for many parents and teens to watch together, but particularly sensitive people may need to steer clear. That said, this is more or less the Movie Event Of The Year, and Christians especially ought to acquaint themselves with what everyone’s talking about, even if they don’t see the film themselves.
    • Is it really a sin for a child to want to be held close? Is it wrong for a baby to have emotional needs? From what I’ve read from the Pearls, children are supposed to learn their place and not be an inconvenience. Maybe the Pearls have some good advice to give, but again and again the things I’ve read make the still, small voice inside me scream “THIS IS WRONG!!” The approach the Pearls use will lead to emotional (and likely physical) abuse. Children in many orphanage settings don’t cry, not because they don’t have needs or are especially well-behaved, but because they know no one will answer their cries.
    • My purpose in disciplining my boys is two-fold. I want my boys to grow up to be godly men who live to honor God out of love for Him. I also want my boys to be people I would enjoy being around.
    • Taking a page from radical feminism, liberal evangelicals are attempting to “liberate” women from their “oppressed” place in society: the home, and church. Citing the sexism that all too often does infiltrate churches, women are being called to abandon their feminine distinctions entirely.
    • Gender roles do not equate to gender discrimination.
    • Refuting several speakers who went before her, Keller stated, “To aspire to a unisex or gender-neutral life in the Body of Christ as it exists in the church and at home would be a tragic mistake. We would be guilty of defacing the image of God as it can only be fully reflected in the completion of what each gender brings to the other.” 


      Now is not the time for evangelical women to abandon our femaleness. Instead, we must rediscover and take back what it means to be women. A true understanding of equality hinges upon women’s responsibility to develop their own unique potential and fulfill the unique purpose for which each of us was created by God.

    • Romance isn’t measured by how viral your proposal goes. The internet age may try to sell you something different, but don’t ever forget that viral is closely associated with sickness – so don’t ever make being viral your goal.
    • Because get this, kidsHow a man proposes isn’t what makes him romantic. It’s how a man purposes to lay down his life that makes him romantic.
    • Be one of the boring ones. Pray to be one who get 50 boring years of marriage – 50 years to let her heart bore a hole deep into yours.
    • Let everyone do their talking about 50 shades of grey, but don’t let anyone talk you out of it: committment is pretty much black and white. Because the truth is, real love will always make you suffer. Simply commit: Who am I willing to suffer for?
    • No, your dad did not get down on one knee when he proposed – because the romantic men know it’s about living your whole life on your knees.

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

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Posted by on 26/11/2013 in Current Issues


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