Sunday, March 28, 2010

Excerpt from "The God Who is There" by Frances Schaeffer

On sharing the Gospel...

"As I seek to do this [pushing the point of tension away from non-Christian beliefs], I need to remind myself constantly that this is not a game I am playing. If I begin to employ it as a kind of intellectual exercise, then I am cruel and can expect no real spiritual results. As I push the man off his false balance,he must be able to feel that I care for him. Otherwise I will only end up destroying him, and the cruelty and ugliness of it all will destroy me as well. Merely to be abstract and cold is to show that I do not really believe this person to be created in God's image and therefore one of my kind. Pushing him towards the logic of his presuppositions is going to cause him pain; therefore, I must not push any further than I need to.

If we find the man ready to receive Christ as Savior, then by all means we should not talk about presuppositions but tell him the glorious good news. The whole purpose of our speaking to twentieth century people in the way I have outlined is not to make them admit that we are right in some personally superior way, nor to push their noses in the dirt, but to make them see their need so that they will listen to the gospel. As soon as the person before us is ready to listen to the gospel, we do not push him any further--it is horrible to be propelled in the direction of meaninglessness, against the testimony of the external world and the testimony of oneself.

As we get ready to tell the person God's answer to his or her need, we must make sure that the individual understands that we are talking about real truth, and not about something vaguely religious which seems to work psychologially. We must make sure that he understands that we are talking about real guilt before God, and we are not offering him merely relief for his guilt-feelings. We must make sure that he understands that we are talking to him about history, and that the death of Jesus was not just an ideal or a symbol but a fact of space and time. If we re talking to a person who would not understand the term "space-time history," we can ask "Do you believe that Jesus died in the sense that if you had been there that day you could have rubbed your finger on the cross and got a splinter in it?" Until he understands the importance of these three things, he is not ready to become a Christan. (pp 156-157)

F.Schaeffer (1998) The God Who is There. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.

Friday, March 26, 2010

"Read the Gospels"

This is part 4 of an interview of the late Professor Martin Hengel on the history of the Gospels. In this short clip, pay close atention to the last 1:48 of the interview.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

I've Been in the Storm

I've been in the storm so long,
I've been in the storm so long, children,
I've been in the storm so long,
Oh, give me little time to pray.

Oh, let me tell my mother
How I come along,
Oh give me little time to pray,
With a hung down head an' a achin' heart,
Oh give me little time to pray.

Oh, when I get to heaven,
I'll walk all about,
Oh, give me little time to pray,
There'll be nobody there to turn me out,
Oh, give me little time to pray.

I've been in the storm so long,
I've veen in the storm so long, children,
I've veen in the srom so long,
Oh, give me little time to pray.

Traditional Spiritual
Listen here; as arranged by Jeffery Ames

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Where are all the little girls?

Here is an important article that you all should read. Because of the ease of technology today, countries that put little value on women in society are using ultra-sound to determine the sex of the child the mother is carrying. If the child is a girl; she is then aborted.

A book just out entitled "Half the Sky" chronicles the plight of women around the world in societies that have very little value for them.

Remember our Christian history; in the early church, it was the Christians who would routinely collect the infant girls that were "exposed" in the Roman Empire to die. The church valued women then; will we value women now?

For Thou didst form my inward parts; Thou didst weave me in my mother's womb. I will give thanks to Thee, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; wonderful are Thy works, and my soul knows it very well.(Psalm 139:13-14)

Friday, March 12, 2010

A Vision

Summer day, sheets hanging on the line;
a bee hums in a hibiscus flower, covered in pollen.

I smell the grass, freshly cut,
I feel the warmth of the sun on my skin;

a golden glow, the air is radiant.

Jesus, you wrap me in your arms,
and I lay my head against your chest.

The smell of your robes is sweet and clean;

I am truly safe.



When I am afraid, I will put my trust in Thee. In God, whose word I praise, in God I have put my trust; I shall not be afraid. What can mere man do to me? (Psalm 56:3-4)

Monday, March 8, 2010

Invitation

Sunday, March 14th @9:30am I will be giving a review of the book "The Lost World of Genesis One" by John Walton for the class "Common Sense Christianity" at First Presbyterian Church; 15th and Canyon, Boulder, CO

I will be discussing ancient cosmology in the context of the origins debate.

All are welcome to attend!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

"Mirrors; who's holding yours?"

“Truth is so obscured nowadays and lies [are] so well established that unless we love the truth we shall never recognize it.” Pascal “Pensees” no.739

Humanity today is unwilling to stand before the mirror that God is holding up; for when we gaze into that mirror, we are exposed and see how filthy and corrupt we truly are. Seeing ourselves in God’s light demeans us and humbles us; we do not want to face the truth of who we are.

So as a whole, we turn to another mirror; one the enemy of all creation holds up for us. Immediately we can see ourselves as beautiful, successful; as gods. This is a smooth and easy path; seemingly obtainable and right within our grasp. This must be the way to truth, beauty and success; life doesn’t need to be so hard, does it?

But as we spends more and more time in front of the mirror of ease, success, and beauty; the image begins to change. The beauty fades, the success is actually slavery; and we watch ourselves disintegrating and rotting away. Our very lives crumble into nothing more than dust and decay.

But if we persevere in gazing into the mirror held by God; to face how fallen we truly are, something amazing begins to happen. Here too the image begins to change—the rot and corruption begins to fall away, the wrinkles and scars begin to smooth, the rags we are clothed in vanish, and we begin to get a glimpse of the original, glorious, fulfilled plan and purpose for our lives. We see God’s original plan redeemed by the Blood of the Lamb.

“But whenever a man turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.” 2 Corinthians 3:16-18

“But the one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man shall be blessed in what he does.” James 1:25

“I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire, that you may become rich, and white garments, that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and eyesalve to anoint your eyes, that you may see. Those whom I love, I reprove and discipline; be zealous therefore and repent.” Revelation 3:18-19

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

"No-Man's Land"

In rejoicing over life, I dance; therefore I am a seductress.

I enjoy political, theological and philosophical debate; therefore I am “intimidating”.

In enjoying these “debates” I find myself in many conversations with men; therefore I am trying to seduce them.

I try to encourage women to stand up and express themselves with out fear of reprisal; therefore I am a lesbian.

I speak out for being disturbed at the explicit sexual conversation around me; therefore I am a “Bible Thumper” and “from the wrong generation”.

I finally am given a chance to teach at church on Sunday; therefore it is assumed I am teaching children.

Jesus, I keep you firmly on the Throne. You alone are the author and perfector of my faith; I will look to you and try not to glance at the “wind and the waves” but where is it written in your Word that my cross is my gender?