Saturday, December 29, 2012

Competing Voices

I haven't read this book entirely. Just now I picked it up and read a small section near middle and appreciate what Charles Spurgeon has to say. Enjoy.

Competing Voices

Another motive for abundantly uttering the praises of God is that other voices are clamorous to drown it. What a noisy world this is with its conflicting, discordant cries. "Here," cries on. "Look there," shouts another. This uproar would drown the notes of God's praise unless His people uttered them again and yet again. The more there is said against our God, the more we should speak for Him.

Whenever you hear a man curse, it would be wise to say aloud, 'Bless the Lord." Say it seven times for every time he curses, and make him hear it. Perhaps he will want to know what you are doing, which will then give you an opportunity of asking what he is doing. He will have more difficulty in explaining himself than you will in explaining yourself. Do try if you can to make up for the injuries done to the dear and sacred name of God by multiplying your praises in proportion as you hear Him spoken ill of, I say, unless you give forth abundant utterance, God's praise will be buried under heaps of Blasphemy, ribaldry, nonsense, error, and idle talk. Abundantly utter it so that some of it, at least, may be heard.

To read more purchase the book here.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

God Loves Beauty

As Christian women, what we wear must flow from an understanding that we are creatures who bear the image of our Creator who created beauty; that we are redeemed sinners living in a fallen world; and that we are servants who need to be ready to do the good works that God has prepared in advance for us to do. Modesty is an attitude of the heart that seeks to give glory to God, serve others, and put self to death. Its most visible expression is what we wear.

To wear inadequate clothing is to deny that you are a sinner and that you need a Saviour. Immodesty is actually a denial of the gospel, and it has no place in the life of a believer. Wearing inadequate clothing says that you don’t need God’s covering, that you don’t think you’re sinful, or that you are content in your sin. Calvin said that immodesty was an expression of despising the Master, “who intended clothing to be a sign of shame.”

Modest clothing is beautiful. While we each have slightly different perspectives on what is ugly, as Christian women we should try and dress in a way that is beautiful. Not elaborate or decadent or seductive, as I said, but beautiful.
Carolyn Mahaney says, “[B]ecause we are created in the image of our Creator, each of us has this propensity to make things beautiful. That means, when we decorate our homes, or plant a lovely flower garden, or seek to add some form of beauty to our surroundings, even when we attempt to enhance our personal appearance—we are actually imitating and delighting in the works of our Great Creator.”
God loves beauty. He created beauty. Christ is the One who is most beautiful, and dressing in ugly clothing denies this truth and dishonours the One who gave us the gift of beauty and creativity. As Christ’s children, we should be delighting in the beauty He gave us by enjoying colour, texture, creativity, skill, and even the beauty of figure and form that are all gifts from a benevolent Creator to His creatures. We should be an adornment to creation. We are the crown of creation but we can look like the dregs without trying.

Read the rest here.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

What Is "Theonomy"? By Dr. Greg Bahnsen

Dr. Van Til taught us that "There is no alternative but that of theonomy and autonomy" (Christian-Theistic Ethics, p. 134). Every ethical decision assumes some final authority or standard, and that will either be self-law ("autonomy") or God's law ("theonomy"). While unbelievers consider themselves the ultimate authority in determining moral right or wrong, believers acknowledge that God alone has that position and prerogative.

The position which has come to be labeled "theonomy" today thus holds that the word of the Lord is the sole, supreme, and unchallengeable standard for the actions and attitudes of all men in all areas of life. Our obligation to keep God's commands cannot be judged by any extrascriptural standard, such as whether its specific requirements (when properly interpreted) are congenial to past traditions or modern feelings and practices.

Jesus My Savior

When any of us come to Christ for salvation, it is with a sense of our sin and misery before God. Our very need of the Savior arises from a conviction of sin, brought home to our hearts by the Holy Spirit showing our guilt for violating God's commandments. As Paul wrote, "I had not known sin except through the law" (Rom. 7:7). The law defines what sin is (1 John 3:4). As such the law cannot be our personal vehicle for gaining favor with God. It rather aims at Christ as our only righteousness, tutoring us that justification must be by faith in Him (Rom. 10:4; Gal. 3:24).

So theonomy teaches that since the fall it has always been unlawful to use the law of God in hopes of establishing one's own personal merit and justification, in contrast or complement to salvation by way of promise and faith. As Paul said, it was "through the law" that he learned to "die to the law" as a way of self-salvation (Gal. 2:9). Commitment to obedience is but the lifestyle of faith, a token of gratitude for God's redeeming grace. "By grace you have been saved through faith... not of works.... We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God previously prepared that we should walk in them" (Eph. 2:8-10).

In What is Faith? J. Gresham Machen urged that "a new and more powerful proclamation of that law is perhaps the most pressing need of the hour.... A low view of laws always brings legalism in religion; a high view of law makes a man a seeker after grace. Pray God that the high view may again prevail" (pp. 141-142).

Jesus My Lord

After coming to Christ in faith and repentance we all naturally ask how a Christian should live. A. A. Hodge answers: "While Christ fulfilled the law for us, the Holy Spirit fulfils the law in us, by sanctifying us into complete conformity to it" (The Confession of Faith, p. 251). Paul wrote in Romans 8:4-9 that unregenerate men are enemies of God who cannot submit to His law, but those who walk by the Holy Spirit subject themselves to that law. Paul himself endorses that we should "delight in the law after the inward man" (Rom. 7:22).

The Christian confesses that Jesus is the Lord, thus looking to the directives of Jesus to guide his life. Jesus said "if you love me, you will keep my commandments" (John 14:15). Moreover, we will strive to teach others to observe whatever He has commanded us (Matt. 28:18-20). Such healthy and necessary moral standards are surely not burdensome to the believer who bows to Christ as the Lord (1 John 5:3).

As our Lord, moreover, Jesus teaches us that man is to live by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God (Matt. 4:4). We have no right to edit God's commandments for ourselves, deciding to follow those which agree with our preconceived ideas and rejecting the others. James teaches that we are not to become "judges of the law," but rather doers of that law (4:11-12); to break even one point of it is to be guilty of breaking it all (2:10). The whole law is our duty, except where the Lawgiver and Lord reveals otherwise. God forbids us to diminish His commands on our own authority (Deut. 4:2). "Every scripture" (even the Old Testament) is profitable, said Paul, for "instruction in righteousness" so that we would be thoroughly equipped for every good work (2 Tim. 3:16-17).

Accordingly theonomy views God's laws directing moral behavior to be a reflection of His unchanging character; such laws are not arbitrary, but objectively, universally, and absolutely binding. It is God's law that "you are to be holy because I am holy" (1 Peter 1:16, citing Leviticus). The law may not be criticized or challenged by us. It is "holy, righteous and good" (Rom. 7:12). This moral law was revealed to Israel in oracles and ordinances, but even the Gentiles show the work of the law upon their hearts and know its ordinances from the natural order and inward conscience (Rom. 1:32; 2:14-15). Who, then, is under the authority of God's law? Paul answers "all the world" (Rom. 3:19).

Covenant Theology

The law revealed by Moses and subsequent Old Testament authors was given within a covenantal administration of God's grace which included not only moral instruction, but gloriously and mercifully "promises, prophecies, sacrifices, circumcision, the paschal lamb, and other types and ordinances delivered to the people of the Jews, all fore-signifying Christ to come" (Westminster Confession of Faith VII.5). God's revelation itself teaches us that New Covenant believers, who have the law powerfully written on their hearts (Jer. 31:31ff.; Heb. 8:8-12), no longer follow the foreshadows and administrative details of the old covenant. They are obsolete (Heb. 8:13), having been imposed only until the time when the Messiah would come (Heb. 9:10; Col. 2:17). Thus, for example, on the basis of God's own instruction, we no longer resort to animal sacrifices at the temple and a Levitical priest (Heb. 7-10); the cultic dietary laws have been set aside, for God has cleansed the unclean meats (representing the Gentiles) from which Israel was to be separate or holy (Acts 10).

Theonomy teaches, then, that in regard to the Old Testament law, the New Covenant surpasses the Old Covenant in glory, power, and finality. The New Covenant also supersedes the Old Covenant shadows, thereby changing the application of sacrificial, purity, and "separation" principles, redefining the people of God (e.g., Matt. 21:43), and also altering the significance of the promised land (e.g., Rom. 4:13; 1 Peter 1:4).

What is crucial to notice here is that theonomic ethics comes to these conclusions on the basis of Biblical instruction. Men have no right to alter or spurn Old Testament laws on their own say-so, social traditions, or preconceived ideas about what is morally appropriate or inappropriate in the Mosaic law. They have no right to include more in the discontinuity between old and new covenants than can be warranted from divine revelation.

Theonomy thus teaches that we should presume that Old Testament laws continue to be morally binding in the New Testament unless they are rescinded or modified by further revelation. Theonomy's methodology stands squarely against that of dispensational theology which maintains that all of the Old Testament commandments should be deemed -- in advance of exegesis -- to be abrogated, unless they are repeated in the New Testament.

On this issue the words of our Lord are definitive and clear in Matthew 5:17-19. Jesus declared that he did not come not abrogate the Old Testament Law and Prophets, but to give them their full measure. John Murray wrote that Jesus' "fulfillment" of the law "refers to the function of validating and confirming the law and the prophets" (Principles of Conduct, p. 150). With respect to the Old Testament's moral standards, Jesus went on to insist that until the end of the physical cosmos, not the slightest stroke of the law will pass away. "Therefore whoever shall break one of these least commandments and teach men so shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven." Jesus confirmed the validity of the law, even down to its least commandment, and censures anyone who dares to teach otherwise (without authorization from the Lawgiver Himself). New Testament Christians must operate on the presumption of continuity with the Old Testament moral code.

King of Kings

That general continuity which we presume with respect to the moral standards of the Old Testament applies to political ethics. John Murray called it a fatal error "if it is thought that the Christian revelation, the Bible, does not come to the civil authority with a demand for obedience to its direction and precept as stringent and inescapable as it does to the individual, to the family, and to the church"

In addition to being the Head of the church, Christ has been made King over all other earthly kings (1 Tim. 6:15), the "ruler of the kings of the earth" (Rev. 1:5); to Him by right they owe allegiance and obedience. He has been invested with all authority in heaven as well as on earth (Matt. 28:18), and it is to be our prayer that God's will be done on earth just as perfectly as it is in heaven (Matt. 6:10). Jehovah has established His Son as King upon His holy hill, and thus the kings and judges of the earth are now required to submit reverently to Him and serve the Lord (Ps. 2:6-12).

So theonomy teaches that civil rulers are morally obligated to enforce those laws of Christ, found throughout the Scriptures, which are addressed to magistrates (as well as to refrain from coercion in areas where God has not prescribed their intervention). As Paul wrote in Romans 13:1-10, magistrates -- even the secular rulers of Rome -- are obligated to conduct their offices as "ministers of God," avenging God's wrath (compare 13:4 with 12:19) against criminal evil-doers. They will give an account on the Final Day of their service before the King of kings, their Creator and Judge. Christian involvement in politics calls for recognition of God's transcendent, absolute, revealed law as a standard by which to judge all social codes and political policies. The Scottish theologian, William Symington, well said: "It is the duty of nations, as subjects of Christ, to take his law as their rule. They are apt to think enough that they take, as their standard of legislation and administration, human reason, natural conscience, public opinion or political expediency. None of these, however, nor indeed all of them together, can supply a sufficient guide in affairs of state" (Messiah the Prince, p. 234).

The Apostle Paul affirmed that one of the uses of the Old Testament law which we know to be good is the restraint of criminal behavior (1 Tim. 1:8-10). Jesus endorsed the penal sanctions of the Old Testament law, condemning those who would make them void by their own human traditions (Matt. 15:3-4). Paul likewise upheld the penal standards of the Mosaic judicial law (Acts 25:11). The author of Hebrews leaves us no doubt about the inspired New Testament perspective on the Mosaic penalties, saying "every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense of reward" (2:2). God requires that judges not punish too harshly or too leniently, but assign a penalty proportionate to the crime (cf. "an eye for an eye..."). To uphold genuine justice in their punishments, magistrates need the direction of God's law. In observing the law which God revealed to Israel, all nations should respond "what great nation is there that has statutes and ordinances so righteous as all this law?" (Deut. 4:8).

Although Israel as a political body has expired -- and along with it its judicial law as a constitution -- the general equity of those judicial laws is still required (Westminster Confession XIX.4). Similarly, when a public library goes out of business (and your library card thus expires), the truth of what was written in its books is not abolished or changed. Political codes today ought to incorporate the moral requirements which were culturally illustrated in the God-given, judicial laws of Old Testament Israel. George Gillespie, widely regarded as the most authoritative theologian at the Westminster Assembly, wrote: "the will of God concerning civil justice and punishments is no where so fully and clearly revealed as in the judicial law of Moses.... He who was punishable by death under the judicial law is punishable by death still" ("Wholesome Severity Reconciled...," 1645).

Those who do not favor taking God's law as the ultimate standard for civil morality and public justice will be forced to substitute some other criterion. The civil magistrate cannot function without some standard of good and evil. If that standard is not the revealed law of God, then in some form or expression it will have to be a law of men -- the standard of self-law or autonomy. Men must choose in their civil affairs to be governed by God's law (theonomy), or be ruled by tyrants, and acquiesce to increasing social degeneracy.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Thinking Like An Entrepreneur

"Yet, while poorer people tend to think in terms of savings, i.e., how much can I save if I don't buy this or that, people who do well financially tend to focus upon increasing revenue or earnings. While there will always be a limit to how much money you can save clipping grocery coupons, there is no practical limit to one's income. "

Peter I. Hupalo

Sunday, September 23, 2012

“Accepted in the beloved.”

Ephesians 1:6

What a state of privilege! It includes our justification before God, but the term “acceptance” in the Greek means more than that. It signifies that we are the objects of divine complacence, nay, even of divine delight. How marvellous that we, worms, mortals, sinners, should be the objects of divine love! But it is only “in the beloved.” Some Christians seem to be accepted in their own experience, at least, that is their apprehension. When their spirit is lively, and their hopes bright, they think God accepts them, for they feel so high, so heavenly-minded, so drawn above the earth! But when their souls cleave to the dust, they are the victims of the fear that they are no longer accepted. If they could but see that all their high joys do not exalt them, and all their low despondencies do not really depress them in their Father’s sight, but that they stand accepted in One who never alters, in One who is always the beloved of God, always perfect, always without spot or wrinkle, or any such thing, how much happier they would be, and how much more they would honour the Saviour! Rejoice then, believer, in this: thou art accepted “in the beloved.” Thou lookest within, and thou sayest, “There is nothing acceptable here!” But look at Christ, and see if there is not everything acceptable there. Thy sins trouble thee; but God has cast thy sins behind his back, and thou art accepted in the Righteous One. Thou hast to fight with corruption, and to wrestle with temptation, but thou art already accepted in him who has overcome the powers of evil. The devil tempts thee; be of good cheer, he cannot destroy thee, for thou art accepted in him who has broken Satan’s head. Know by full assurance thy glorious standing. Even glorified souls are not more accepted than thou art. They are only accepted in heaven “in the beloved,” and thou art even now accepted in Christ after the same manner.

Friday, September 07, 2012

Matthew Henry on Divine Favor

The peculiar favour of God to the saints. Observe,

(1.) Their character, Psa_36:7. They are such as are allured by the excellency of God's loving-kindness to put their trust under the shadow of his wings. [1.] God's loving-kindness is precious to them. They relish it; they taste a transcendent sweetness in it; they admire God's beauty and benignity above any thing in this world, nothing so amiable, so desirable. Those know not God that do not admire his loving-kindness; and those know not themselves that do not earnestly covet it. [2.] They therefore repose an entire confidence in him. They have recourse to him, put themselves under his protection, and then think themselves safe and find themselves easy, as the chickens under the wings of the hen, Mat_23:37. It was the character of proselytes that they came to trust under the wings of the God of Israel (Rth_2:12); and what more proper to gather proselytes than the excellency of his loving-kindness? What more powerful to engage our complacency to him and on him? Those that are thus drawn by love will cleave to him.

(2.) Their privilege. Happy, thrice happy, the people whose God is the Lord, for in him they have, or may have, or shall have, a complete happiness. [1.] Their desires shall be answered, (Psa_36:8): They shall be abundantly satisfied with the fatness of thy house, their wants supplied; their cravings gratified, and their capacities filled. In God all-sufficient they shall have enough, all that which an enlightened enlarged soul can desire or receive. The gains of the world and the delights of sense will surfeit, but never satisfy, Isa_55:2. But the communications of divine favour and grace will satisfy, but never surfeit. A gracious soul, though still desiring more of God, never desires more than God. The gifts of Providence so far satisfy them that they are content with such things as they have. I have all, and abound, Phi_4:18. The benefit of holy ordinances is the fatness of God's house, sweet to a sanctified soul and strengthening to the spiritual and divine life. With this they are abundantly satisfied; they desire nothing more in this world than to live a life of communion with God and to have the comfort of the promises. But the full, the abundant satisfaction is reserved for the future state, the house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. Every vessel will be full there. [2.] Their joys shall be constant: Thou shalt make them drink of the river of thy pleasures. First, There are pleasures that are truly divine. “They are thy pleasures, not only which come from thee as the giver of them, but which terminate in thee as the matter and centre of them.” Being purely spiritual, they are of the same nature with those of the glorious inhabitants of the upper world, and bear some analogy even to the delights of the Eternal Mind. Secondly, There is a river of these pleasures, always full, always fresh, always flowing. There is enough for all, enough for each; see Psa_46:4. The pleasures of sense are putrid puddle-water; those of faith are pure and pleasant, clear as crystal, Rev_22:1. Thirdly, God has not only provided this river of pleasures for his people, but he makes them to drink of it, works in them a gracious appetite to these pleasures, and by his Spirit fills their souls with joy and peace in believing. In heaven they shall be for ever drinking of those pleasures that are at God's right hand, satiated with a fulness of joy, Psa_16:11. [3.] Life and light shall be their everlasting bliss and portion, Psa_36:9. Having God himself for their felicity, First, In him they have a fountain of life, from which those rivers of pleasure flow, Psa_36:8. The God of nature is the fountain of natural life. In him we live, and move, and have our being. The God of grace is the fountain of spiritual life. All the strength and comfort of a sanctified soul, all its gracious principles, powers, and performances, are from God. He is the spring and author of all its sensations of divine things, and all its motions towards them: he quickens whom he will; and whosoever will may come, and take from him of the waters of life freely. He is the fountain of eternal life. The happiness of glorified saints consists in the vision and fruition of him, and in the immediate communications of his love, without interruption or fear of cessation. Secondly, In him they have light in perfection, wisdom, knowledge, and joy, all included in this light: In thy light we shall see light, that is, 1. “In the knowledge of thee in grace, and the vision of thee in glory, we shall have that which will abundantly suit and satisfy our understandings.” That divine light which shines in the scripture, and especially in the face of Christ, the light of the world, has all truth in it. When we come to see God face to face, within the veil, we shall see light in perfection, we shall know enough then, 1Co_13:12; 1Jo_3:2. 2. “In communion with thee now; by the communications of thy grace to us and the return of our devout affections to thee, and in the fruition of thee shortly in heaven, we shall have a complete felicity and satisfaction. In thy favour we have all the good we can desire.” This is a dark world; we see little comfort in it; but in the heavenly light there is true light, and no false light, light that is lasting and never wastes. In this world we see God, and enjoy him by creatures and means; but in heaven God himself shall be with us (Rev_21:3) and we shall see and enjoy him immediately.

Tuesday, August 07, 2012

Pick A Sin & Repent: Weigh Your Words

Pick a sin to repent of. On your own. Use the Word. Be His workmanship.

From The Institutes of Biblical Law. R. J. Rushdoony, pg. 593

A principle which applies to the tongues of unwed young ladies as well. Slander is too commonplace.

"A husband can defame his wife not only by speech but by distrust. If he refuses to allow her those duties and privileges which she is competent to administer, he has defamed her. To cite an example: a husband regularly belittled his wife's financial competence and often cited as a joke a foolish checkbook error she had made. The error was real enough, but it was not a true report of her character. Her little gift shop had twice saved him from serious trouble in his own business; on one occasion, he had over-expanded too rapidly when business was very good and then faced bankruptcy; her nest egg, derived from her shop, saved him, but it was never repaid nor publicly acknowledged. On another occasion, bad investments hurt him financially, and her funds provided a needed payment on his building. This husband regularly slandered his more capable wife without ever formally telling a lie: he simply cited a few facts which gave a false picture of a very capable woman. Truth itself can be slanderous, if it is used to give a partial or distorted picture."

Monday, May 07, 2012

Power Grab - Who Is Running The Show?

"Dominion does not disappear when a man denounces it; it is simply transferred to another person, perhaps to his wife, children, employer, or the state. Where the individual surrenders his due dominion, where the family abdicates it, and the worker and employer reduce it, there another party, usually the state, concentrates dominion. Where organized society surrenders power, the mob gains it proportionate to the surrender." R. J. Rushdoony, The Institutes of Biblical Law, Vol. 1. pg. 448, 449.

Sunday, May 06, 2012

God Blesses His Saints With Prosperity And Wealth

"God's order clearly includes private property. It also clearly approves of godly wealth. The Hebrew words translated as wealth have also the meanings of strength, resources, goods, and prosperity. According to Proverbs 13:11, 'Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished: but he that gathereth by labour shall increase.' The warning of Scripture is against the proud who forget God in their wealth, not against the fact of wealth (Deut. 8: 17, 18). God blesses His saints with prosperity and wealth, as witness Job, Abraham, David, Solomon and others. One of the possible blessings of obedience to the law is wealth (Ps. 112:3). It is arrogant and ungodly wealth which is condemned (James 5:1-6). The declaration concerning the rich and the needle's eye is commonly misused: its point is that no man can save himself; salvation is impossible with men, because it is wholly the work of God (Mark 10:23-27). Wealth is an aspect of God's blessing of His faithful ones: 'The blessing of the LORD, it maketh right, and he addeth no sorrow with it' (Pro. 10:22). The godly pursuit of property and wealth is thus fully legitimate." -R. J. Rushdoony, The Institutes of Biblical Law, Vol. 1, pg. 455

Friday, April 20, 2012

Dear Rapunzel,

Dear Rapunzel,

Thank you for your email. We happen to already be familiar with your story as presented in “Tangled,” and even know a little more about your backstory than you do, and so we do have some thoughts for you.

We will be unusually blunt, because we know you are not a real person with feelings; you are the carefully written, cast, voiced, sketched, sculpted, scanned, painted, rigged, animated, rendered, and composited brainchild of John Lasseter, Glen Keane, and the Disney scriptwriting committee. We’re talking to you, polygons.

And not only were you meticulously handcrafted by others: Your entire universe was built around you, detail by detail, by these same imagineers. Your particular situation, down to Flynn’s serendipitous appearance in your window – your moral dilemmas, down to your conflicts with your mother – the characters you ran into, down to the last pub thug – didn’t just happen, but were deliberated over by a bunch of businessmen for approximately ten years. Everything about your world, including the ethical system by which it operates, came out of somebody’s head.

But here you are, in the middle of it, and you need advice. Let’s get down to helping you out! We would like to propose the following course of action for you:

Continue reading here to find out what Rapunzel should do.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Work & Culture

" is a theological fact: it is God-ordained for the creature who alone is created in God's image, man. It is God's appointed way for man to realize the implications of that image, namely, righteousness, holiness, knowledge, and dominion. By means of work man is able to fulfil God's creation mandate and calling, and to become a ruler over himself, his calling, his household, and the world around him." -R. J. Rushdoony

Read the rest here.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

God's Will Never Contradicts God's Word: Can You Tattoo?

The Institutes of Biblical Law by Rousas John Rushdoony
The Sixth commandment pg. 223

Rousas John Rushdoony said:

The purely personal violations of this law involve any and every abuse of our body which is destructive of our health and in violation of God's will for us...

The personal application includes markings, cuttings, and tattoos of the body, for the body must be used under God’s law, and all such acts are forbidden in the law, whether for morning, as religious marks, or for ornamental or other uses (Lev. 19:28 21:5). Tattooing was practiced religiously to indicate that one adhered to or belonged to a god; it also indicated that a man was a slave, that he belonged to a lord or owner. The believer, as a free man in Christ, indicates Christ’s lordship by obedience, not by servile markings: the body is kept holy and clean unto the Lord. The persistence of a mark of slavery among men is indicative of man’s perversity.

... the sixth commandment, like the first, has a reference to all ten commandments. When the law declares, "Thou shalt have no other gods before me" (Ex. 20:3), it means in part that every violation of any law involves placing ourselves and our will above God's word and is there fore a violation of the first commandment. Similarly, when the law declares, "Thou shalt not kill, " it means that any violation of the first and second 'tables' of the law involves a destruction of our life in relationship to God.

Recommended Resources:

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Battling for the Soul of a Nation

The United Nations, China, Hillary Clinton, and a few godly Christians are wrestling over the future of the newest nation in the world—Southern Sudan. Geoff Botkin returns from leading a team of men to this new nation for high-level meetings with the leaders there. How do you build a nation’s economy and political state on biblical principle? The same way they did it here—and the same way we’re trying to rebuild it here!

This may be one of the most highly educational, insightful, and visionary interviews Generations with Vision has ever done. SHARE THIS ONE WITH YOUR CHILDREN TOO!

Sorrow is better than laughter

Sorrow [is] better than laughter: for by the sadness of the countenance the heart is made better.
--Ecc. 7:3

Matthew Henry:

IV. That gravity and seriousness better become us, and are better for us, than mirth and jollity, v. 3. The common proverb says, "An ounce of mirth is worth a pound of sorrow;’’ but the preacher teaches us a contrary lesson: Sorrow is better than laughter, more agreeable to our present state, where we are daily sinning and suffering ourselves, more or less, and daily seeing the sins and sufferings of others. While we are in a vale of tears, we should conform to the temper of the climate. It is also more for our advantage; for, by the sadness that appears in the countenance, the heart is often made better. Note, 1. That is best for us which is best for our souls, by which the heart is made better, though it be unpleasing to sense. 2. Sadness is often a happy means of seriousness, and that affliction which is impairing to the health, estate, and family, may be improving to the mind, and make such impressions upon that as may alter its temper very much for the better, may make it humble and meek, loose from the world, penitent for sin, and careful of duty. Vexatio dat intellectum—Vexation sharpens the intellect. Periissem nisi periissem—I should have perished if I had not been made wretched. It will follow, on the contrary, that by the mirth and frolicsomeness of the countenance the heart is made worse, more vain, carnal, sensual, and secure, more in love with the world and more estranged from God and spiritual things (Job 21:12, 14), till it become utterly unconcerned in the afflictions of Joseph, as those Amos 6:5, 6, and the king and Haman, Esth. 3:15.

Monday, April 02, 2012

Steady Plodding Brings Prosperity

The thoughts of the diligent [tend] only to plenteousness; but of every one [that is] hasty only to want. Proverbs 21:5

Matthew Henry:

Here is, 1. The way to be rich. If we would live plentifully and comfortably in the world, we must be diligent in our business, and not shrink from the toil and trouble of it, but prosecute it closely, improving all advantages and opportunities for it, and doing what we do with all our might; yet we must not be hasty in it, nor hurry ourselves and others with it, but keep doing fair and softly, which, we say, goes far in a day. With diligence there must be contrivance. The thoughts of the diligent are as necessary as the hand of the diligent. Forecast is as good as work. Seest thou a man thus prudent and diligent? He will have enough to live on. 2. The way to be poor. Those that are hasty, that are rash and inconsiderate in their affairs, and will not take time to think, that are greedy of gain, by right or wrong, and make haste to be rich by unjust practices or unwise projects, are in the ready road to poverty. Their thoughts and contrivances, by which they hope to raise themselves, will ruin them.

Recommended Resources:
Biblical Economics: A complete study course
Biblical Economics in Comics

Sunday, April 01, 2012

An Inspiring Chronicle Of A Battle For Civilization

"The people of Uganda have driven Kony out of their nation. The people of South Sudan have already pushed Kony out of their country. They also pushed the well-armed soldiers of Omar al-Bashir out of their country. They are the first people in nearly a century to push back a Jihadist Muslim army. These triumphant people have won their freedom and they are leading Eastern Africa into practices of maturity, justice and, now, moral conquest."

Read the rest of this inspiring chronicle on Western Conservatory

Friday, March 30, 2012

Everything That Is Wrong With CCM -Voddie Baucham

Voddie Baucham comments:

Have you heard there's another Christian on American Idol? Now before I comment on Colton Dixon's song choice, let me say emphatically that I do not believe singers, who happen to be Christian, are obligated to sing songs that are overtly "Christian." However, this guy chose to sing his "favorite worship song of all time," and it turned out to be Lifehouse's "Everything." As I watched him, I couldn't help but cringe. Here was a picture of everything (pardon the pun) that is wrong with Contemporary Christian Music and the modern "worship" scene.

The song was:

1. Christ-less: How do we "worship" Christ without mentioning him (or even his attributes) in a clear way?

2. Worldly: He looked like a rock star singing a rock song (the hair, the outfit, the demeanor, etc.). Turn down the volume (wait, the song was not biblical or Christian in any way, so you didn't have to) and he may as well have been singing to a woman.

3. Romanticized: Even the celebrity coach said the lyric went "right to the heart of a woman." This is the language of seduction; not worship!

4. Shallow: There is simply no 'there' there. True worship is NOT subjective emotionalism!

5. Confusing: "How can I be this close to you and not be moved by you?" Close? Are we talking physical proximity? Moved? Moved how? To repentance? To holiness (as opposed to worldliness)? What does it all mean? And why write a worship song that has to be explained? Shouldn't a worship song explain itself?

6. Comfortable: The worship of almighty God SHOULD NOT MAKE PEOPLE ON AMERICAN IDOL COMFORTABLE! True worship would have Steven Tyler's head spinning!

I'm glad he loves God, and hope he does well. However, had he just sung the song and left it at that, he would have done far more for his witness. Instead, he demonstrated a complete dearth of understanding in regard to true worship. However, he probably garnered millions of votes from Christians (and false professors) who share his sentiment.

Recommended Resources:
The Philosophy of the Christian Curriculum, chapter 11. Rushdoony

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Character Development in Scripts

What every good protagonist knows:

"...the source of energy and power is radically different in the Biblical faith from that in the humanistic creed. For the orthodox Christian, who grounds his philosophy of history on the doctrine of creation, the mainspring of history is God. Time rests on the foundation of eternity, on the eternal decree of God. Time and history therefore have meaning because they were created in terms of God's perfect and totally comprehensive plan. Every blade of grass, every sparrow's fall, the very hairs of our head, are all comprehended and governed by God's eternal decree, and all have meaning in terms of it. The humanist faces a meaningless world in which he must strive to create and establish meaning. The Christian accepts a world which is totally meaningful and in which every event moves in terms of God's predestined purpose, and when man accepts God as his Lord and Christ as his Savior, every event works together for good to him, because he is now in harmony with that meaning and destiny (Rom. 8:28). Man there fore does not create meaning; instead, having rebelled against God's meaning, having striven to be as God and himself the source of meaning and definition (Gen. 3:5), man now submits to God's meaning and finds his life therein. For the humanist, the dynamics of history are in titanic man, as he imposes his will and idea on the world. For the orthodox Christian, the dynamics of history are in God the Creator, and man accepts those dynamics and rejoices in the blessings there of when man accepts Christ as Savior and then follows the leadings of the sanctifying Holy Spirit. For him, the Bible is authoritative, inspired, and infallible Word of the triune God."-R. J. Rushdoony, The biblical Philosophy of History.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Live nearer to God

"Let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall." — 1 Corinthians 10:12

It is a curious fact, that there is such a thing as being proud of grace. A man says, “I have great faith, I shall not fall; poor little faith may, but I never shall.” “I have fervent love,” says another, “I can stand, there is no danger of my going astray.” He who boasts of grace has little grace to boast of. Some who do this imagine that their graces can keep them, knowing not that the stream must flow constantly from the fountain head, or else the brook will soon be dry. If a continuous stream of oil comes not to the lamp, though it burn brightly today, it will smoke tomorrow, and noxious will be its scent. Take heed that thou gloriest not in thy graces, but let all thy glorying and confidence be in Christ and His strength, for only so canst thou be kept from falling. Be much more in prayer. Spend longer time in holy adoration. Read the Scriptures more earnestly and constantly. Watch your lives more carefully. Live nearer to God. Take the best examples for your pattern. Let your conversation be redolent of heaven. Let your hearts be perfumed with affection for men’s souls. So live that men may take knowledge of you that you have been with Jesus, and have learned of Him; and when that happy day shall come, when He whom you love shall say, “Come up higher,” may it be your happiness to hear Him say, “Thou hast fought a good fight, thou hast finished thy course, and henceforth there is laid up for thee a crown of righteousness which fadeth not away.” On, Christian, with care and caution! On, with holy fear and trembling! On, with faith and confidence in Jesus alone, and let your constant petition be, “Uphold me according to Thy word.” He is able, and He alone, “To keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy.”

Charles Spurgeon, Morning and Evening March 14, 2012

Recommended Reading
The King James Study Bible
Strong's Exhaustive Concordance

Friday, March 02, 2012

'IndoctriNation' Wins Best Documentary Award on the Eve of Another School Tragedy

Contact: Colin Gunn,
Feb. 29, 2012
Christian Newswire

On Saturday night, 'IndoctriNation: Public Schools and the Decline of Christianity in America' won the Jubilee Award for Best Documentary at the San Antonio Independent Christian Film Festival among 25 semi-finalists. 'IndoctriNation' was also runner-up for the $101,000 Best of Festival Award, which went to 'Courageous,' recently the best-selling DVD in America.'IndoctriNation' directors Colin Gunn and Joaquin Fernandez and co-producer Scott Eash were present to receive one of the highest honors in the Christian filmmaking community in front of 2,100 attendees from 40 states and multiple foreign countries, awarded to them the night before the Oscars ceremony in Hollywood.

IndoctriNation' features the emotional testimony of Brian Rohrbough who lost his son during the Columbine High School massacre in 1999. "It may have taken a school shooting to wake us up, to see the danger," Rohrbough says in the film, "but that's a very small danger compared to all the other things that go on that can destroy our children."

With saddening poignancy, less than 36 hours after the SAICFF closing ceremony, another tragic school shooting occurred. Thomas "TJ" Lane, a sophomore at Chardon High School, began a shooting rampage in the school cafeteria during breakfast on Monday, February 27. Of the five students who were shot, three have now died.
Read the rest here.
Recommended Homeschooling Resources: