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Friday, August 26, 2011

1:17AM - Xtremely Loaded Meals served (1 Corinthians 1 & 2 posted)

Originally posted by lunadanipog at Xtremely Loaded Meals served (1 Corinthians 1 & 2 posted)

I've just started with my devotional blogs yesterday in my Tumblr account. (starting with 1 Corinthians 1) and tonight I've just posted 1 Corinthians 2. Tell you, each devotional blog is really Xtremely Loaded Meal.  Thank God greatly for granting us wisdom.  
I'd like to share it also with you.  You can access them on my Tumblr account (moondanpog.tumblr.com).




Or if you'd like to go directly to Xtremely Loaded Meal blogs, just click:

1 Corinthians 1 Xtremely Loaded Meal

1 Corinthians 2 Xtremely Loaded Meal


God bless us all!


SOLI DEO GLORIA!!!



Thursday, August 25, 2011

12:08AM - GOD AS CREATOR: GRACIOUS SUSTAINER

Originally posted by lunadanipog at GOD AS CREATOR: GRACIOUS SUSTAINER


I have been dealing with the topic God as Creator in my previous posts.  I started with GOD AS CREATOR: a truth often taken for granted.  The article simply says that we should always go back to the truth that all we see with our naked eyes belong to God and are from from God (even we, ourselves).  Next is GOD AS CREATOR: Isaiah Amused by the Creator King.  Here we saw how Isaiah praised the God of Israel and how he emphasized how imporabale their God is (our God is)...how He sustains His creation.  No one is like our God.  I posted a song entitled "My Creator King" at the end of the article.
Today, we'll see another amazing character of God as the Creator of all.  Since He created all the things in heaven and on earth, He also graciously sustains everything.  Let us look at some verses which support this.
Again, from the book of Isaiah, it says in chapter 51:12-13, 15-16


12     The Lord says, "I am the one who strengthens you.  Why should you fear mortals, who are no more enduring than grass?
13      Have you forgotten the Lord who made you, who stretched out the heavens and laid the earth's foundations?  Why should you live in constant fear of the fury of those who oppress you, of those who are ready to destroy you?  Their fury can no longer touch you.


15    "I am the Lord you God; I stir up the sea and make its waves roar.  My name is the Lord Almighty!
16    I stretched out the heavens and laid the earth's foundations; I say to Jerusalem, 'You are my people! I have given you my teaching,
and I protect you with my hand'"


This is how God cares for His creation.  As for his concern for humans (to those whom He has chosen together with the Israel), He won't let any fury touch them.  His very own hands will protect them.


Let us see what the New Testament has to say with this.  It is said in Acts 14:17



"But He has always given evidence of His existence by the good things he does: he gives you rain from heaven and crops at the right times; he gives you food and fills your hearts with happiness."


God purposely sustains his creation to show His glory, His existence.  It's for his glory!  You can also see in this verse that He does and designs things to happen in order.  He knows when to pour out rain, so the crops may be for harvest 'at the right times' (He knows their time).  He gives us food (I believe this is not only for our physical bodies but for spiritual also).
Also in Matthew 6:25-34 (the famous passage about Worrying), Jesus (himself) testifies how God sustains everything - from the flowers, to wild grasses, to the birds,..and to us humans.


I would like to include here Psalm 104 because the whole chapter explains it all.  How God put His creations in order, how they are interdependent with one another and how He sustains all of them.





Psalm 104 "In Praise of the Creator"


  O Lord, my God, how great you are! 
   You are clothed with majesty and glory;
    2 you cover yourself with light. 
   You have spread out the heavens like a tent
    3 and built your home on the waters above.[a] 
   You use the clouds as your chariot 
      and ride on the wings of the wind.
 4 You use the winds as your messengers 
      and flashes of lightning as your servants.


 5 You have set the earth firmly on its foundations, 
      and it will never be moved.
 6 You placed the ocean over it like a robe, 
      and the water covered the mountains.
 7 When you rebuked the waters, they fled; 
      they rushed away when they heard your shout of command.
 8 They flowed over the mountains and into the valleys, 
      to the place you had made for them.
 9 You set a boundary they can never pass, 
      to keep them from covering the earth again.


 10 You make springs flow in the valleys, 
      and rivers run between the hills.
 11 They provide water for the wild animals; 
      there the wild donkeys quench their thirst.
 12 In the trees near by, 
      the birds make their nests and sing.


 13 From the sky you send rain on the hills, 
      and the earth is filled with your blessings.
 14 You make grass grow for the cattle 
      and plants for us to use, 
   so that we can grow our crops
    15 and produce wine to make us happy, 
      olive oil to make us cheerful, 
      and bread to give us strength.


 16 The cedars of Lebanon get plenty of rain— 
      the Lord's own trees, which he planted.
 17 There the birds build their nests; 
      the storks nest in the fir trees.
 18 The wild goats live in the high mountains, 
      and the rock badgers hide in the cliffs.


 19 You created the moon to mark the months; 
      the sun knows the time to set.
 20 You made the night, and in the darkness 
      all the wild animals come out.
 21 The young lions roar while they hunt, 
      looking for the food that God provides.
 22 When the sun rises, they go back 
      and lie down in their dens.
 23 Then people go out to do their work 
      and keep working until evening.



 24 Lord, you have made so many things! 
      How wisely you made them all! 
      The earth is filled with your creatures.

 25 There is the ocean, large and wide, 
      where countless creatures live, 
      large and small alike.
 26 The ships sail on it, and in it plays Leviathan, 
      that sea monster which you made.[b]



 27 All of them depend on you 
      to give them food when they need it.
 28 You give it to them, and they eat it; 
      you provide food, and they are satisfied.
 29 When you turn away, they are afraid; 
      when you take away your breath, they die 
      and go back to the dust from which they came.
 30 But when you give them breath,[c] they are created; 
      you give new life to the earth.


 31 May the glory of the Lord last forever! 
      May the Lord be happy with what he has made!

 32 He looks at the earth, and it trembles; 
      he touches the mountains, and they pour out smoke.



 33 I will sing to the Lord all my life; 
      as long as I live I will sing praises to my God.
 34 May he be pleased with my song, 
      for my gladness comes from him.
 35 May sinners be destroyed from the earth; 
      may the wicked be no more.


   Praise the Lord, my soul! 
   Praise the Lord!





Verses 27-31 are very powerful.  The psalmist gave emphasis on the total dependence of the whole creation to the great Creator.  Our lives come from HIm.  If He withhold his sustaining grace, WE'RE LOST! We die!


And in response to this, our sould shall forever praise His name! (verses 33-35).


Let me quote again Isaiah 40:26.  I really love it how Isaiah put it in astronomical language:








Soli Deo Gloria!

Current mood: amused

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

10:46AM - GOD AS CREATOR: Isaiah amused by the Creator King (Isaiah 40:12-31)

Originally posted by lunadanipog at GOD AS CREATOR: Isaiah amused by the Creator King (Isaiah 40:12-31)

I'd like to share this passage from the book of Isaiah.  Isaiah 40:12-31 "Israel's Incomparable God".  This is my devotion for this day and it's related to my latest post GOD AS CREATOR: a truth often taken for granted.  In this passage, Isaiah tells Israel how great their God is.  He even gave emphasis to how God sustains His creation.  It really amazes me.

  
Israel's Incomparable God
 12 Can anyone measure the ocean by handfuls 
      or measure the sky with his hands? 
   Can anyone hold the soil of the earth in a cup 
      or weigh the mountains and hills on scales?
 13 Can anyone tell the Lord what to do? 
      Who can teach him or give him advice?
 14 With whom does God consult 
      in order to know and understand 
      and to learn how things should be done?

 15 To the Lord the nations are nothing, 
      no more than a drop of water; 
      the distant islands are as light as dust.
 16 All the animals in the forests of Lebanon 
      are not enough for a sacrifice to our God, 
      and its trees are too few to kindle the fire.
 17 The nations are nothing at all to him.

 18 To whom can God be compared? 
      How can you describe what he is like?
 19 He is not like an idol that workers make, 
      that metalworkers cover with gold 
      and set in a base of silver.
 20 Anyone who cannot afford silver or gold[a] 
      chooses wood that will not rot. 
   He finds a skillful worker 
      to make an image that won't fall down.

 21 Do you not know? 
      Were you not told long ago? 
      Have you not heard how the world began?
 22 It was made by the one who sits on his throne 
      above the earth and beyond the sky; 
      the people below look as tiny as ants. 
   He stretched out the sky like a curtain, 
      like a tent in which to live.

 23 He brings down powerful rulers 
      and reduces them to nothing.
 24 They are like young plants, 
      just set out and barely rooted. 
   When the Lord sends a wind, 
      they dry up and blow away like straw.

 25 To whom can the holy God be compared? 
      Is there anyone else like him?
 26 Look up at the sky! 
   Who created the stars you see? 
      The one who leads them out like an army, 
      he knows how many there are 
      and calls each one by name! 
   His power is so great— 
      not one of them is ever missing!

 27 Israel, why then do you complain 
      that the Lord doesn't know your troubles 
      or care if you suffer injustice?
 28 Don't you know? Haven't you heard? 
   The Lord is the everlasting God; 
      he created all the world. 
   He never grows tired or weary. 
      No one understands his thoughts.
 29 He strengthens those who are weak and tired.
 30 Even those who are young grow weak; 
      young people can fall exhausted.
 31 But those who trust in the Lord for help 
      will find their strength renewed. 
   They will rise on wings like eagles; 
      they will run and not get weary; 
      they will walk and not grow weak.
(Good News Translation)

Current mood: amazed

Monday, August 22, 2011

10:32PM - GOD AS CREATOR: a truth often taken for granted

Originally posted by lunadanipog at GOD AS CREATOR: a truth often taken for granted


My first official post here in LiveJournal says that It's Not About Us. I ended it with the introduction of 'God as our Creator'.

The book of Genesis clearly says that everything in this world comes from God. He is the author of it all, things in heaven and on earth. (Pls see Genesis 1&2). The universe is His, not only the 'known universe' or what is usually taught to us in our science classes, but all of "God's universe". Even scientists admit that they have not yet discovered the entirety of universe. Well simply because it's limitless...it's a limitless masterpiece of a limitless Creator.

Look, this is very basic but we often take this truth for granted. Living in a material world tempts people to think that they can do anything they want to do even without God. Or even deceive them that what they see with their naked eyes are but creations of man. There are so many gifts which we should be thankful for but we tend to love the gift more than the Giver.

On every day of God's creation, it is written always that "...God was pleased with what He saw..." Maybe we forget that this is what we are made for after all - "to please God". The creation is for His own glory, not ours. Let us give back to God the praises that He deserves.

In Psalm 24:1 it says, "The world and ALL that is in it belong to the Lord; the earth and ALL who live on it are His." The use of "ALL" in this verse is clear. There is no doubt that we have a great Author of life. We are His.
And in response, it says in Psalm 103:22 "Praise the Lord ALL His creatures in ALL the places He rules. Praise the Lord my soul!"
The psalmist acknowledged his Creator and gave Him praises. May we also have the same attitude and heart of David (the psalmist). Let us remember our God as our great Creator.

Current mood: cheerful

Sunday, August 21, 2011

9:57PM - Your Epitaph

Originally posted by lunadanipog at Your Epitaph

Poll #1771301 Life under the SON

What do you want people to see in your epitaph?

Thursday, December 13, 2007

1:27PM - Indulgences

Interesting article, reminding us that yes, the Roman Catholic Church still dishes out indulgences.

HT-tutal

Thursday, November 29, 2007

10:39AM - Infant faith.


Alright, looking to revive some of LJ's reformed community: 

Can infants have saving faith?  I would contend they can.

In brief:

Faith is more trust than intellectual cognition.  The demons intellectually understand God exists but are not saved.  Likewise a child can trust his mother without truly understanding much about her.  Through the word and sacraments, in the same way we speak to infants eventually teaching them speech, God uses them to build faith even in infants. 

BTW, note this doesn't assume paedobaptism, though it may make more sense.  You could argue that infants may be regenerate but should be baptized until they demonstrate their faith.

x-posted to sovereigngrace

Saturday, September 30, 2006

9:03PM - Salutations Brothers and Sista's in Christ Jesus

Name: Eppiffanie
Church: Christ Reform Church in Anaheim, Ca. 

I like very much the idea of a Reform Christian Community on LJ.  However, the purpose for this community was not readily apparent from the user info page.  

So the Question is:

What is your purpose?

I will hold my answer until the discussion warrents it.

Current mood: bombastic

Tuesday, July 4, 2006

9:13AM - Solas and such...

Hi there.  
My name is Diane.  I am a single mother of a great two year old and almost, sortof, kindof, nearly engaged to an amazing man named Matt.  See all my gushing over this and other weighty issues of culture and church on my lj.  :o)  
I haven't always followed hard after Christ, regardless of my longstanding membership at my church and being raised in a conservative Christian home.  Nope...I was rather prideful (as all sin is) and walked far from my roots.

I came to know Christ truly around 22 years of age.  I hurried off into "ministry" since I couldn't see how else I was to use this new knowledge of truth.  I had no idea what the cultural mandate was or how I was to apply my faith to the culture.  i just abstained from it all.  I fell in love and equated (sadly) my blessings with God's favor and when that ended, a part of me thought I wasn't in God's favor, I stopped fellowshiping and fell back into familiar sin.

After a time, I tried to get back up...I cried out to God from my pit and asked Him to pull me out of my own self.  He used an nonconsensual situation and an unplanned pregnancy to hem me in and draw me close to Him.  New life breaks us in so many, many ways and I was determined to be taught by this.

Since then, I have walked fairly consistently and prayed for deeper, more-solid roots.  Then eventual outcome of all my searching and studying has led me to the reformed view and I see now so many things, by His grace alone, that I never saw prior nor could have imagined, it is so lovely.  

I also am acutely aware of the shift in our nation and world as a whole.  I know from reading the likes of Frances Schaeffer and now Nancy Pearcey (along with contemporaries RC Sproul, Ravi Zacharias, Os Guinness, and Del Tackett, etc.) that this is a long line of changes set in motion years ago and the church, having been relegated to the sphere of the "sacred" and apart from "reason" (which is a misnomer given that all truth and reason is of God), we have lost our voice in the culture unless we begin to exercise our knowledge that God has indeed spoken in the whole of our lives, in every area.  We have this treasure in jars of clay...

That said, I have been recently trained to lead the Truth Project 12-week comprehensive worldview study with Matt and we covet your prayers...not to mention any other worldview discussions/opinions/etc.  We are so very honored to do this and think this is a vehicle for much Truth to be learned and acted upon.
www.truthproject.org 

Anywho...check me out (lj) and friend me if desired...Im glad to be a part of the "discussion" (eh hem, the word "conversation" gives me the eebie-jeebies as of late, if you know what i mean!).

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

7:50PM - Er, hello ...

I'm Lucy (yes, named after C. S. Lewis's character and Aslan's friend.)

When I heard that Wittgenstein was having words with the positivists, telling them that no, the noumenal things that didn't have words WERE the important things, I believed him. It made sense, and everything I knew pointed to the truth of that idea. But I didn't know how that felt, except in tiny little grains of unspeakability, until this weekend, when I finally claimed a call that's been probably twelve or fifteen years in the making (that is, most of my life.) It's strange how God makes the dreams come true that I've had for so long I thought those longings were just the way I was.

So that's what I'm on the edge of: saying yes to fear and trembling, because the fear was nothing compared to the pain of saying no. Freed from one fear into another. Awakened and new, the bits of who I had let myself become crumbling off like eggshell.


... I promise I'm not always this abstract (though I admit I often am). Really Important Life Events In The Life Of Me: I graduated from college about a month ago, I got back from Annual Conference (UMC, Missouri) yesterday and it was SO AWESOME, I'm writing a book (sort of), and in a few weeks I'm going to have a Real Job Doing Ministry At A Church (music, youth, care.) I like symbols and alternative worship.

SO HI.

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

1:49PM

"Alan asked a few questions. I don't remember what they were, but as a final question he asked Dr. Bright what Jesus meant to him. Alan said Dr. Bright could not answer the question. He said Dr. Bright just started to cry. He sat there at his big chair behind his big desk and wept.
When Alan told that story I wondered what it was like to love Jesus that way. I wondered, quite honestly, if that Bill Bright guy was just nuts or if he really knew Jesus in a personal way, so well that he would cry at the very mention of His name. I knew then that I would like to know Jesus like that, with my heart, not just my head. I felt like that would be the key to something."
- Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller

Wednesday, May 3, 2006

10:38PM - Two things

1) Since someone asked, i will explain why this community is "reformed_xians" and not "reformed_christians." First and foremost, "reformed_christians" was too long for LJ. The name "reformed" may have been taken, but even if not, it means little to nothing by itself. A "Reformed" faith can be Christian or Jewish, for example. So i wanted it to be more specific. X, "chi," is the 23rd letter of the Greek alphabet, and the first letter of the Greek word for Christ (χριστος). It was used by itself in early Christianity to denote Christ specifically. Hence "X-Mas" is, ironically, actually a good way to emphasize Christ. In seminary/religious education lingo, the shorthand, "xians" is used often, and X is used for Christ (a theta "θ" is often used in place of God, as in θεος). They by no means diminish proper respect to the titles, nor do they miss the meaning of the words. Such usage may, however, throw people off, so here is clarification.

2) What other interests would you suggest i add for the community, and are there any interests you'd take out? Since some people search and judge communities by interests, i think this is a worthy question.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

7:26PM - Introducing myself

New member here. This community looks promising and I'm excited to see what will become of it.

So, my name is Rae, a southern boy who's been (at least semi-)permanently placed in Columbus, Ohio. Until a few months ago, I was a computer network technician and administrator, and had been for the past eight years. Through a pretty insane series of what can only be called providential events and conversations, though, I was recently hired by my church -- a fairly new PCA urban plant -- as Director of Ministry (which is similar to an assistant pastor position, but I'm not yet ordained). It looked like a pretty risky proposition, hiring someone without seminary training to such a position (especially since there were other candidates who were seminary grads), but my pastor is a big believer in "indigenous ministry" -- that is, identifying and raising up called men from within the church for vocational ministry. I'm considering doing some distance work (possibly pursuing a full M.Div) through Gordon-Conwell, but that's still up in the air.

Funny enough, I came to fully embrace the Doctrines of Grace at least partially through the music of Derek Webb. If I had to pigeonhole myself into a theological/ecclesiological category, I'd call myself a "Credobaptistic Presbyterian". I used to call myself a "Reformed Baptist", but a presbyterian system of church government seems more biblical to me than most expressions of congregational government. I've become pretty sympathetic to the paedobaptist position, though, so maybe make the full jump someday. Not today, though.

Hmm, other things about me . . .
- Mark Driscoll is my favorite preacher.
- I abhor liberal theology, and occasionally post snarky tirades against it.
- I'm a husband and a father.
- I love the art of coffee and espresso, and have been called a "coffee snob" often. I prefer the terms "connoisseur" and "aficionado" . . . mainly because they have lots of letters and sound classier than "snob".
- I also love argyle, as evidenced by my icon.

That's about it for now. Good to be here. Feel free to add me to your friends list as well.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

3:22PM

"When you come to knowing God, the initiative lies on His side. If He does not show Himself, nothing you can do will enable you to find Him. And, in fact, He shows much more of Himself to some people than to others -- not because He has favourites, but because it is impossible for Him to show Himself to a man whose whole mind and character are in the wrong condition. Just as sunlight, though it has no favourites, cannot be reflected in a dusty mirror as clearly as in a clean one."

In another chapter:

"[...] That is what always happens when you go away from the words of the Bible. It is quite right to go away from them for a moment in order to make some special point clear. But you must alays go back. Naturally God knows how to describe Himself much better than we know how to describe him."

-- Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis

Saturday, April 8, 2006

9:27AM

"Man can will nothing unless he has first understood that he must count no one but himself; that he is alone, abandoned on earth in the midst of his infinite responsibilities, without help, with no other aim than the one he sets himself, with no other destiny than the one he forges for himself on this earth."
Sartre realized that God did not exist, and thus freed himself from submission to the idiotic moral code contrived by society. Neither good nor evil has any substance in the mind of the existentialist philosopher. Man is an accident—some quasi-intelligent monstrosities of nature, able to observe the universe, yet some are such imbeciles as to believe it has meaning. In asphyxiating God, Sartre offered freedom, not only to himself but to all humanity. But is freedom an accurate description of this state? If every man holds an equal share in the freedom granted by the revelation that purpose is a mere invention, what binding standard can direct our lives? Each man is left to defend himself and himself only. He is responsible for every action he takes, yet he will pay for the actions of others. And there is nothing he can do.


However, we Christians have the answer to this dilemma. Faith in God is a guarantee of objective universal truth. Life as we know it truly does have a purpose, not only an associated purpose for each individual but one for all. “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God, with thy whole heart, and with thy whole soul, and with thy whole mind, and with thy whole strength. This is the first commandment.” (Deuteronomy 6:5) To live under an objective standard, the only protection man has from Sartre’s hideous realization, is to live accordingly: in unconditional submission to that authority. Only through obedience to the will of God are we freed, but how does God makes His will known?


Some Christians today would answer that the Bible, God’s almighty Word, is our only source for infallible universal truth. “All scripture, inspired of God, is profitable to teach, to reprove, to correct, to instruct in justice, That the man of God may be perfect, furnished to every good work.” (II Timothy 3:16-17) When asked a question about doctrine or morals today, a Christian may resort to a message they know from Scripture, claiming authority because he speaks indeed from God’s Word. However, an evolving society tends to complicate the question, evading the grasp of Biblical morality. Is contraception condemned by the Bible? One Christian will answer yes; another will answer a condemning no. However, a third person will say, “I see equivalent Biblical evidence to support either opinion.” A person may argue until out of breath, but the question remains: “Does the Bible support or condemn the use of contraception?” No matter how well debated, two contravening opinions can not both be true. Either contraception is a sin or it is not, but without an authoritative statement, we can not know. A sin is a sin whether we choose to believe or reject the idea, and lacking the ability to discern, many people are condemned by their own ignorance.


At this point we begin to fall back into the dilemma of subjectivism. Scripture undeniably must be interpreted, an actuality attested to by the fact that within Scripture itself there exists no explicit teaching of dogma. Many fundamental dogmas of the Christian faith—such as the doctrine of the Trinity, which has no explicit mention in Scripture—are defined by and accepted as an authoritative statement of interpretation. We arrive at many extra-biblical truths only by claiming that they follow logically from how we interpret what is stated in the Bible. So when a person says, “I believe in the teachings of the Bible” it must then be noted that this person is referring to a specific interpretation of the Bible based on private judgment. There is absolutely nothing wrong with believing Scripture to be an infallible standard of truth, but to isolate Scripture from an authoritative body which protects its inherent truth from fallacy promotes theological relativism within the Christian faith.


This is shown again and again throughout the history of the church. The heretics of the early centuries, having detached themselves from the teachings of the church, were known to quote from Scripture even more than the orthodox Christians. Unable to appeal to an authority, they could use only deceit through the perversion of the Scriptures to protect their doctrines. St. Vincent of Lerins, in his Commonitory writes:

"Do heretics also appeal to Scripture? They do indeed, and with a vengeance; for you may see them scamper through every single book of Holy Scripture… Whether among their own people, or among strangers, in private or in public, in speaking or in writing, at convivial meetings, or in the streets, hardly ever do they bring forward anything of their own which they do not endeavor to shelter under words of Scripture."

Vincent later to compares the use of unsubstantiated interpretations of Scripture to Satan’s temptation of Christ. “[Satan] has the answer ready, ‘For it is written;’ and forthwith he produces a thousand testimonies, a thousand examples, a thousand authorities from the Law, from the Psalms, from the apostles, from the Prophets” to deceive and destroy the faith of the believers. The church settled dispute not merely by an appeal to Scripture, for even the heretics, even Satan, has that. Rather, the disputes were settled by the church’s claim to having verifiable authority over the private judgment of the individuals. If not for that intrinsic authority, that God-granted supremacy, no dispute would have been settled; there would be as many “churches” as there are believers.


According to the World Christian Encyclopedia, the current number of Protestant denominations has exceeded 37,000, a frightening fact considering the command of St. Paul that there be no schisms. (I Corinthians 1:10) However, relativism inevitably leads to irreconcilable disputes, and without an earthly manifestation of God’s authority, even theism is unprotected from this fate. Relativism has cut us off from historic Christianity, and according to Philip Blosser, left us “reeling in the capricious and devastating winds of doctrine that have swept across the last five centuries.” Since no authority exists to objectively declare one right or wrong, our presuppositions assume that authority, leading us into incompatible factions.


If one finds himself disagreeing with his denomination, should he find another that agrees with him? Or should he submit to his church’s authority? He is left to face the question, “Which religious authorities are valid?” The appeal to Scripture no longer suffices as an authority at this point, since the very issue at hand is determining which theology is the Biblically sound. The Christian would at this point be forced into the tautological statement that “the only biblical authorities are those that are biblical”. Although the statement is true, it is unhelpful and, in fact, detrimental to the believer because he, having failed to recognize a pre-existing definitive authority, has now to choose only between two options: either to found his own denomination based on his interpretation, or to find another denomination that agrees with his interpretation. In either case, the believer has failed in his goal to keep Scripture as the highest authority because it has been subordinated to an external interpretation.


Apart from an auxiliary magisterial body to protect its inherent truth, the belief in a Scriptural authority is untenable. An overlooked, yet sufficiently conspicuous fact makes this obvious: Scripture has no inspired table of contents! Scripture simply is incapable of identifying itself as such, and aside from faith in a divinely guided administration to recognize specific writings as God’s infallible Word, how do we discern scripture from uninspired texts? If not for an infallible canon, the very foundation of our faith collapses, leaving us in no better a condition than the existentialist in defining purpose for our lives. We would be relying on an equally synthetic and chimerical authority to prescribe objective meaning.


However, this need not be the case. Through faith in God’s Holy anointed Church, the “pillar and ground of the truth,” the “Bride of Christ,” the divinely guided authority that Christ established on this earth, we may know, with certainty, that life has a purpose. “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God, with thy whole heart, and with thy whole soul, and with thy whole mind, and with thy whole strength. This is the first commandment.” (Deuteronomy 6:5) To love the Lord is to love His Church. “For where the Church is, there the Spirit of God is also; and where the Spirit of God is, there the Church is, and all grace. And the Spirit is truth.” The Lord Jesus Christ who says, “I am the …Truth,” (John 14:6) guaranteed His Spirit of truth to the His church to guide it into “all truth.” (John 16:13) To the leader of His church he gave the Keys of the Kingdom of Heaven and with this, the authority to bind and loose as it shall be in heaven. (Matthew 16:19) The gates of hell shall never prevail against his eternally exalted Church. Glorify and praise God in obedience through the love of His blessed sacrament of truth and salvation: His divine court, the triumphant One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.

Tuesday, April 4, 2006

10:07PM

I posted this in my own journal, too. It's the best refutation of Federal Vision theology I've heard yet. It's to the point and very hard-hitting. This is a fight that's brewing in the Reformed church, especially among Presbyterians, and everyone needs to be educated about it.

Why Baptism, and What Does It Do? by R. Scott Clark of Westminster Theological Seminary, California.

Sunday, March 5, 2006

10:19PM

What upsets you most about the current state of "Christianity" (generally speaking) in America and/or Europe?

Saturday, February 25, 2006

1:55PM - LOL, check this out

This blogger summarizes why we should not ordain males. At the very least, very funny.

1:52AM - My Take on Female Ordination

I was raised in a conservative home, my mother deplored female pastorship and ordination, and i thus grew up thinking it was something rather evil. My dad is an incredibly wise man, and he too affirmed my mom's position. In high school, however, i finally got to finish reading the Scriptures for myself, i met a girl whom i thought my spiritual superior and guide, i started to severely doubt that the world could be more "progressive" and "accepting" than Jesus, and to realize that my mother's bias against female preaching was based on her own notions more than grounded in the Scriptures. Scripture on its own to me suggested that Jesus considered women as equal to men. And then of course there was the ultimate spiritual truth about human divisions being destroyed and done away with through Christ, as outlined by Paul in Galatians 3:28. And yet, my first two years of college i remained skeptical of female ordination, merely on the grounds that women whom i had heard preach up until then (three!) had done a poor job. "Surely," i thought, "if 3/3 women i heard couldn't preach, women were just not meant to be preachers." Little did i think that my first year of college i had been jumping from church to church, rejecting one male pastor after another (maybe like 6/6 until i found one i liked).

And yet, despite my skepticism, i was struck by several critical facts. The people around me whom i thought understood the Scriptures best were either women or in favor of female ordination. Scripture provided example after example of women being leaders (like Deborah), prophets, etc. Women, in fact, had been the first to preach the Gospel to Peter and the other 10 disciples. Women had been called for radical things. A woman was made a parent and guide of the Logos incarnate. Both a man and a woman were first to recognize the Messiah (Simeon and Anna). As i took classes with incredible professors that really opened up the Scriptures to me, so much more came into this picture:

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(x-posted to my journal)

Thursday, February 23, 2006

9:09PM - introduction

Steve asked for introductions, so here I am.

I'm Danielle, 29, from Jackson, Mississippi. I moved to Jackson specifically to be in the congregation of what's unoffically considered the flagship of the PCA, First Presbyterian. I am daily humbled by and thankful for my pastor, Ligon Duncan. If you've got any Reformed-type books published within the last 10 years, chances are he wrote the forward or a blurb for it. He's the next J.I. Packer when it comes to forwards! :)

I have always been Presbyterian, am a Covenant child, and my family in the Presbyterian church can be traced back a couple hundred years. My father graduated from Reformed Theological Seminary (Jackson) in the early 70s and was a pastor in Mississippi, Nebraska and Alabama before I was born. I'm thoroughly Reformed and proud of it. :)

Things that bug me:
1. the emergent church
2. modern worship services (bands, praise choruses, etc.)
3. Auburn Avenue theology / female ordination (those are in a dead heat for being the thing that bugs me most)

Things that thrill me:
1. Calvin
2. the history of Scottish Presbyterianism
3. singing Bach, Handel and Haydn (hey, I'm in the choir; it's my thing!)

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