25 January 2011

My Hope is Built on Nothing Less

Powerful lyrics in the hymn My Hope is Built on Nothing Less. Consider verse 2:

When darkness veils his lovely face,
I rest on His unchanging grace;
in every high and stormy gale,
my anchor holds within the veil.

Truly we worship a loving and gracious God.

22 January 2011

What is God's Best?

Since God has foreordained whatsoever comes to pass, to speak of an enjoying of His best (rather than His second or third best) and missing His best, strikes some as meaningless if not erroneous expressions. ...By God's “best” we mean a personal experience of His approbation; a manifest enjoyment of His favour in grace, in providence, and in nature. It is not to be limited unto the receiving of His special favours in a spiritual way, but includes as well His interpositions on our temporal behalf. It is to have the blessing of the Lord upon our lives, in all their varied aspects and relations, upon the soul and body alike. It is to enjoy the sense of His approval, and have Him showing Himself strong in our behalf. Though it does not mean that such a one will be exempted from the ordinary vicissitudes and trials of life, but rather that such will be sanctified unto him and result in increased blessing, for they not only make a way for God to put forth His power in delivering him from them or elevating his heart above them, but they also serve for the developing of his graces and provide opportunities for him to “glorify Him in the fire”; nevertheless, it does mean that such a one will escape those troubles and afflictions in which the follies of so many Christians involve them: it does mean that he will be immune from those sore chastisements which disobedience and a course of backsliding necessarily entail. -A.W. Pink, Practical Christianity.

18 January 2011

We have so much more to do....

A robust and rich model of Christian thinking—the quality of thinking that culminates in a God-centered worldview—requires that we see all truth as interconnected. Ultimately, the systematic wholeness of truth can be traced to the fact that God is himself the author of all truth. Christianity is not a set of doctrines in the sense that a mechanic operates with a set of tools. Instead, Christianity is a comprehensive worldview and way of life that grows out of Christian reflection on the Bible and the unfolding plan of God revealed in the unity of the Scriptures. ...Our intentional effort to develop a Christian worldview requires us to return to first principles again and again in a constant and vigilant effort to ensure that the patterns of our thought are consistent with the Bible and its master narrative. - Al Mohler

We have much to do, starting with what goes on in our heads.

12 January 2011

True Faith 1 Samuel 14

Redeemer Church's exposition on 1 Samuel continues this week with "True Faith" from chapter 14.

11 January 2011

Al Mohler Live Dangerously

This applies to all of us...

By Faith

What an encouraging hymn from Stuart Townend and Keith and Kristyn Getty. Verse four of By Faith:

By faith this mountain shall be moved
and the power of the gospel shall prevail,
for we know in Christ all things are possible
for all who call upon His name.

We will stand as children of the promise;
We will fix our eyes on Him, our soul's reward.
Till the race is finished and the work is done,
we'll walk by faith and not by sight.

10 January 2011

Joshua to Esther Survey Week 1

Elder James Pavlic

We begin a new survey of Joshua to Esther this week. This first lesson introduces us to interpreting and understanding the Old Testament.

08 January 2011

Wells on the Gospel

It is a temptation to think that by being nice and accommodating we can make the Christian gospel seem like a great little addition to everyone’s life. But the gospel is not a great little addition. It is a soul-shaking, costly, demanding reality. The church cannot hide this fact! The gospel is not about self-therapy. Despite our pressured, taut, nervejangling age, the Christian message is not there just to make us feel better about ourselves or more able to cope. It is about coming before our great God and Savior, confessing our sins, entrusting ourselves to Him, and surrendering our claim upon ourselves to Him. What is most needed, and what is most lacking in the church, is a little character in differentiating its message from self-help therapies and marketing strategies. Our deficiency is not that we lack the right technique. It is that we often don’t have a real alternative. - David Wells.

Read the entire interview with Wells here.

06 January 2011

All Praise to Thee, Eternal God


All Praise to Thee, Eternal God

1. All praise to Thee, eternal God,
Who, clothed in garb of flesh and blood,
Dost take a manger for Thy throne,
While worlds on worlds are Thine alone.

2. Once did the skies before Thee bow;
A virgin's arms contain Thee now,
While angels, who in Thee rejoice,
Now listen for Thine infant voice.

3. A little Child, Thou art our Guest
That weary ones in Thee may rest;
Forlorn and lowly is Thy birth
That we may rise to heaven from earth.

4. Thou comest in the darksome night
To make us children of the light,
To make us in the realms divine,
Like Thine own angels, round Thee shine.

5. All this for us Thy love hath done;
By This to Thee our love is won;
For this our joyful songs we raise
And shout our thanks in ceaseless praise.

-Martin Luther

01 January 2011

Just Pick One....Or Two...

New Years is always a time for resolutions and though I think resolutions are for the most part a waste of time, there is some profit in thinking about where I, or should I say we, can improve in holiness. So, I find myself returning to the resolutions of Jonathan Edwards and picking one or two where I find myself lacking or where I've grossly missed the opportunity to cultivate holiness. Hence, here are my two picks:

9. Resolved, to think much on all occasions of my own dying, and of the common circumstances which attend death.

28. Resolved, to study the Scriptures so steadily, constantly and frequently, as that I may find, and plainly perceive myself to grow in the knowledge of the same.

30. Resolved, to strive to my utmost every week to be brought higher in religion, and to a higher exercise of grace, than I was the week before.

41. Resolved, to ask myself at the end of every day, week, month and year, wherein I could possibly in any respect have done better.

OK, that was four. But I see more of God's grace every day and try to see less of self which results in more resolutions I need to embrace. Edwards was a better man than I which seems to have given him the ability to have 70 resolutions. For me, let me take on a few and apply my focus there.

May the Lord be with us in MMXI and may we seek him with all our hearts.