I’ve always loved that line from Robert Murray M’Cheyne: “What my people need from me most is my own personal holiness.” I believe this with all my heart.
Sunday, October 31, 2010
Friday, October 29, 2010
I was thinking about this quote this morning, I'm not sure if have already posted it: The Chief Objective of a Minister � J.C. Ryle Quotes:
Let it never be forgotten that the chief object of a minister of the Gospel is to set forward the salvation of souls. I lay it down as a certain fact that he is no true minister who does not feel this. Talk not of a man’s ordination! All may have been done correctly, and according to rule. He may wear a black coat, and be called a “reverend”. But if the saving of souls is not the grand interest—the ruling passion—the absorbing thought of his heart—he is no true minister of the Gospel—he is a hireling, and not a shepherd. Congregations may have called him—but he is not called by the Holy Spirit. Bishops may have ordained him; but not Christ.
Thursday, October 28, 2010
Can there be a third way? I'm still wating for John Lennox to finish his book about this: AlbertMohler.com – Science Trumps the Bible? — An Amazingly Candid (and Disastrous) Argument:
At this point, Giberson’s argument gets really interesting — and really dangerous. “I am happy to concede that science does indeed trump religious truth about the natural world,” Giberson writes. “Galileo and Darwin showed this only too clearly, even if it is completely lost on Ken Ham and Al Mohler.”
In the economy of a few words, Giberson throws the Bible under the scientific bus. We should be thankful that his argument is so clear, for it puts the case for theistic evolution in its proper light — as a direct attack upon biblical authority.
Wednesday, October 27, 2010
I've never been to America but Mohler seems to agree with this statement: AlbertMohler.com – Hauerwas — How Real is America’s Christianity?:
Americans do not have to believe in God, because they believe that it is a good thing simply to believe: all they need is a general belief in belief. That is why we have never been able to produce interesting atheists in the US. The god most Americans say they believe in is not interesting enough to deny, because it is only the god that has given them a country that ensures that they have the right to choose to believe in the god of their choosing. Accordingly, the only kind of atheism that counts in the US is that which calls into question the proposition that everyone has a right to life, liberty, and happiness.
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
This book does look interesting. Michale Jensen and Tom Frame have co-authored a book. Theoblog Durham: The promise of good things.
This small book is part of our effort to revive interest in the Articles. It reflects our commitment to an expression of Anglican mission and ministry that honours the past, engages with the present and anticipates the future, for the sake of Jesus Christ and the coming Kingdom of God.
Posted by Andrew Vella at 1:18 PM
Monday, October 25, 2010
How to preach when your wife has cancer (or some other “distraction”) � Expository Thoughts:
Before we complain about this we have to wonder why we would want it any other way. We tend to forget that the real pathway to life with Christ is narrow, difficult, and hard to find. If you haven’t cried yourself to sleep at night with the promises of 2 Corinthians 12:9 playing pinball in your heart then you haven’t been in ministry long enough. Give it time and suffering will come to your parsonage.
Posted by Andrew Vella at 11:32 AM
So Keller likes the Book of Common Prayer and he is a Presbyterian :) Newsletter - redeemer.com
Years ago when I wanted to become more skillful in public prayer, I was fortunate to come across the collects of Thomas Cranmer, the writer of the original Episcopal Book of Common Prayer. The “collects” (the stress is on the first syllable)that Cranmer wrote were brief but extremely ‘packed’ little prayers that tied together the doctrine of the day to a particular way of living.
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Inerrancy and Baggage – Justin Taylor:
I’d rather run the risk of being associated with those who hold a literalistic interpretation of Scripture than with those who deny central articles of the faith. (And without seeking to demean the motives of people who don’t like “inerrancy,” I wonder how much of our current aversion to the term is a self-conscious attempt to distance ourselves from some of our forefathers in the faith.)
Dumping the term while upholding the content may appear sophisticated and nuanced, but I believe it breeds more confusion than clarity. So, I’ll continue to affirm inerrancy. I”ll continue to teach it, to properly qualify it, and to reclaim it. To my friends who still don’t like the label, your baggage looks heavier to me.
Another good video with the colour turned down: DeYoung, Duncan, and Mohler: What’s New About the New Calvinism – The Gospel Coalition Blog
Friday, October 15, 2010
I good article on church worship and an interesting point on the current symbols Anglicans have: Articles | Ministry Training Paper: Evangelical Worship | Phillip Jensen:
... the wearing of a surplice, the long white gown, was a symbol in the 16th century of not being significantly different to the layman. By the latter part of the 20th century only clergymen were left wearing the surplice as most robed choirs have moved away from such a cumbersome and inconvenient garment.
Posted by Andrew Vella at 10:47 AM
On men and women in church: Critiquing the Left—And the Right - Desiring God:
Below are a couple paragraphs that give the flavor of Patrick’s even-handed perspective—an approach that critiques both the left and the right, and thus steers clear of both the liberal and conservative errors.
Posted by Andrew Vella at 9:31 AM
Some questions worth asking: A Question and a Challenge for Pastors of the Next Generation – Justin Taylor:
So here are the questions that demand a clear answer in every generation of pastors.
Thursday, October 14, 2010
Piper on our minds and emotions New Think Book Is Not a New Idea - Desiring God:
If we neglect the mind we will drift into all sorts of doctrinal error and dishonor God who wills to be known as he is. And if we neglect the heart we will be dead while we yet live no matter how right our creed is. “This people honors me with their lips but their heart is far from me.” So my goal for us is that we put together what so many keep apart to their own hurt. Let us be clear in our heads and warm in our hearts. Let us feel with all our might and think with all our might.
Posted by Andrew Vella at 10:54 AM
DeYoun response to some objections about him thinking that Calvin believed in inerrancey: Inerrancy and the Reformers – Kevin DeYoung:
I argued that though he didn’t use the word (it wasn’t around), Calvin did believe what the word inerrancy defends.
Posted by Andrew Vella at 9:20 AM
Wednesday, October 13, 2010
This challenged me this morning: How To Lose the Assurance of Your�Salvation | J.C. Ryle Quotes:
Inconsistency of life is utterly destructive of peace of conscience. The two things are incompatible. They cannot and they will not go together. If you will have your besetting sins and cannot make up your minds to give them up, if you will shrink from cutting off the right hand and plucking out the right eye when occasion requires it, I will engage you will have no assurance.
On Hawking's claims: JP Moreland's Web � Scientism Makes Scientists Laughable:
In previous times when average people knew more philosophy, these claims would simply be laughable because they are philosophical assertions being made by scientists who have little or no philosophical training. Thus, however brilliant they are in their own field, Hawking and Mlodinow are laypersons when it comes to the relevant issue at hand. But we live in a scientistic culture. When a scientist speaks, he is taken to be an authority irrespective of what the topic is. And that attitude reflects poorly on the educational level of the public.
Tuesday, October 12, 2010
Penn does make a good point. Do Christians really need science to explain miracles, if that is the case then are they miracles anymore? Penn says Christians are now using Atheists arguments: YouTube - The Science Behind Red Sea Parting - Penn Point (this also has a language warning)
Andrew Katay comments on the talk that Al Stewart gave on church planting (and was just linked below this one)I’ve finally figured out what’s wrong with our church planting strategy � Gold, silver, precious stones?:
On Wednesday, we deal with an initiative in church planting. And I’ve finally figured out what’s wrong with it.
Tips from the Westminster Theological Seminary on how to read and write better: Improve Your Theological Reading and Writing – Justin Taylor
From Francis Chan's DG Nation Conference: Seven Questions to Ask Before You Preach or Teach the Bible - Desiring God:
Am I worried about what people think of my message or what God thinks? (Teach with fear)
Do I genuinely love these people? (Teach with love)
Am I accurately presenting this passage? (Teach with accuracy)
Am I depending on the Holy Spirit's power or my own cleverness? (Teach with power)
Have I applied this message to my own life? (Teach with integrity)
Will this message draw attention to me or to God? (Teach with humility)
Do the people really need this message? (Teach with urgency)"
DeYoung clears up some of what he thinks about the mission of the church, based off some feedback from his round table discussion: My Missional Misfire? – Kevin DeYoung:
Here’s what I said about “missional” at last week’s Desiring God National Conference....
More free audio from Carson: Recent Carson MP3s from Australia – The Gospel Coalition Blog
Monday, October 11, 2010
Posted by Andrew Vella at 2:43 PM
I sometimes don't like these, as I think they try to read too much in the image they are trying to work with, but this isn't too bad advice at all: 7 Marriage Lessons I Learned on the Dance Floor | The Mars Hill Blog
Broken Bone Hymns - Desiring God:
God hasn’t forgotten you. He hasn’t turned his back on you. He isn’t punishing you in anger. He surely isn’t withholding the grace that he has promised from you. No, you’re receiving grace, but it’s grace that is willing to break bones in order to capture and transform your heart. This grace is unrelenting. This grace has no intention of giving up. This grace will not be satisfied with the status quo. This grace does not get discouraged. It will never compromise. It will never become bitter or cynical. This is loving, patient, perseverant, powerful grace.
Posted by Andrew Vella at 9:13 AM
Wednesday, October 6, 2010
A free preview (Chapter 1) of Tim Keller's new book: Chapter One_Generous_Justice – The Gospel Coalition Blog
I always like the Desiring God national conferences, this one looks good, and the content is free: National Conference Media and Summary - Desiring God:
Below are the plenary session titles from this year's Desiring God National Conference, 'Think: The Life of the Mind and the Love of God.' Underneath each title is a brief snapshot of what was covered in the session. Clicking the title will take you to the related audio, video, and notes.
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Another interesting video with the colour turned down, this one is on the mission of the church: The Mission of the Church: DeYoung, Gilbert, Kelly – The Gospel Coalition Blog:
In this video, young pastors Kevin DeYoung, Greg Gilbert, and Ryan Kelly seek clarity for the missional buzzword as they consider the particular calling God has given the local church. Jesus commissioned the apostles to make disciples and proclaim the gospel (Matt. 28:18-20). So is that the extent of the church’s calling today? Or should the church branch out into other good ventures as part of its mission?
Looks alright: Surprise Book—For the Fame of God's Name: Essays in Honor of John Piper - Desiring God:
Then Justin read the name of each of the 27 contributors and the titles of their chapters (see below).
Posted by Andrew Vella at 9:15 AM
AlbertMohler.com – Between the Boy and the Bridge — A Haunting Question:
Yet, when gay activists accuse conservative Christians of homophobia, they are also right. Much of our response to homosexuality is rooted in ignorance and fear. We speak of homosexuals as a particular class of especially depraved sinners and we lie about how homosexuals experience their own struggle. Far too many evangelical pastors talk about sexual orientation with a crude dismissal or with glib assurances that gay persons simply choose to be gay. While most evangelicals know that the Bible condemns homosexuality, far too many find comfort in their own moralism, consigning homosexuals to a theological or moral category all their own.
What if Tyler Clementi had been in your church?