Tuesday, April 29, 2014

God Is Love But Love Is Not God-The Danger Of Human Thought

This right here is an awesome example of the danger of human thought.  People often think "well God could not possibly do that; its wrong" or "babies are completely innocent". -completely ignoring the fact that the Bible says we are BORN sinners. But this error of human thought has spread like a disease throughout our brains.  I hate to think of how this has affected me.  The fact that God loves us despite our imperfections is quite amazing. But I urge you, brothers in sister to remember sola scriptura(scripture alone).

We must, I repeat, MUST have scripture be our ultimate authority. Not the world, not our friends, not even us. Ours and our culture's ideals and values must not dominate Gods. 

There is something else I would like to add and that is the big mistake in the all-to-common bumper sticker "Jesus is my co-pilot". He should not be our co-pilot; but our pilot. WE should be the co-pilot.

And also,  please comment; its what keeps me going! Why write to produce good, if no one will read it and therefore it will not produce good?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Why We Should Study The Reformation

I would like to share with you guys some of my study notes, discussion questions along with my answers as well as my personal observations from my first lesson in "Reformation Profiles" which would be "Why The Reformation Matters." -(by Steven J. Nichols)  If you guys have something to add, would like more information or would simply like to discuss it-please do so! :D

1. Why do historians refer to the Middle Ages as the “Dark Ages”?

My answer: It was refereed to as the Dark Ages because death and spiritual darkness surrounded the era of the middle ages.

2. Why does history matter, particularly for the church?

My answer: There are three main reasons. The first being plainly that history matters- specifically because our faith is a historic faith. For example, if Christ had died but not risen salvation would be impossible. And secondly, the Reformation points out the center of what the church is all about. And lastly, we face similar problems in our day and having knowledge of this can help considerably; after all, history repeats itself. “What has been is what will be, and what has
been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun” -Eccl. 1:9

3. How did the Reformation capture the essence of the church’s purpose? What reformation movements did Dr. Nichols describe that occurred prior to the Reformation of the sixteenth century? Did these movements succeed? Why or why not? What did the Reformers view as the primary deficiency within the Roman Catholic Church, and what remedy did they present?

My answer: There were two main movements before the Reformation of the sixteenth century: Devotio Modera and the Conciliar Movement. Devotio Modera means "new devotion". -This movement called for spiritual reform; this movement did not quite succeed but it did leave a mark on the Reformation more the the Conciliar movement. The Conciliar movement called for an administrative change from the pope to the earlier church form of bishops. An interesting note is that John Hus was part of this movement. The real problem was "the rotten theological core". -So it needed a theological cure.

4. Does the church face similar problems today as the Reformers faced in the sixteenth century? If so, what are some of these problems? How does the study of history assist the church in facing these difficulties and obstacles?

Yes, the church does face similar problems. -Infinite problems really. One of the main ones being following sola scriptura and not adding our own human philosophy to it.

Additional notes: Church history can be inspiring, tradition should not be authoritative, "If we do not train the future generation everything now is for nought", the church of Geneva took up the motto Post tenebras
lux, meaning “After darkness, light.”

"God calls His people to look back at His redemptive work on their behalf to remind them of their relationship" -(from my study guide).

"In the very midst of life, snares of death surround us. Who shall help us in this strife, lest
the foe confound us? Thou only, Lord, Thou only. In the midst of death’s dark veil, powers
of hell overtake us. Who will help when they assail? Who secure will make us? Thou
only, Lord, Thou only. In the midst of utter woe, when our sins oppress us, where shall we
for refuge go? Where for grace to bless us? To Thee, Lord Jesus, only. Thy precious blood
was shed to win, full atonement for our sin."
—from Martin Luther’s hymn, “In the Very Midst of Life”

 And also,  please comment; its what keeps me going! Why write to produce good, if no one will read it and therefore it will not produce good?

The Error Of Human Philosphy

When you mix human philosophy with biblical theology you see human philosophy at its finest. -why can't we just except that the Lord is right; and that we do not need to mix our human thought into it?

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

A Joy And Passion For God And His Word

"When he studied, it was to behold the majesty of God. Thus, his sermon preparation was not primarily for others: it was first and foremost for his own heart. With the aid of the Spirit and a firm bent toward biblical authority, Calvin followed hard after his Creator.  And as he did so, the Lord crushed his spirit and fixed within him a fearful admiration of Christ's excellencies.............. Given Calvin's commitment to God's glory, how did he nourish his mind in the Scriptures?  How did he cultivate  his heart before God?"
~Steven J. Lawson in his book "The Expository Genius of John Calvin.

Wow! This paints a picture of the absolute perfect passion us as Christians have the ability to have towards God and towards His holy Scriptures.  I especially love this quote because it mentions both the fear and majesty of God-further meaning God's awe.  And I believe these things to be very important to the Christian life. -the fear of the Lord, and beholding the majesty of His total awesomeness.  If we as Christians had this same passion that we see in Calvin. -this passion that kept Paul going, this passion that brought thousands to martyrdom, and specifically this passion that is instilled in all of Gods people. It seems to me, however, that this passion is less aflame then in was in many earlier Christians. -If we could only light up this passion; if we could just show the world where this passion comes from.  If we could show them what it means to have our joy in the Lord; if they can know us as Joyous people-I can assure you we would be seen in a much different light.

And while we are on this subject of passion for God; I would like to point out, that as John 1:1 states "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." -So this does not just mean a passion for God; but a passion for His word; the Bible.

This reminds me SO much of a verse I recently read in Jeremiah.  This verse is the verse that stood out to me the most in that day of reading; and I find that those verses, the ones that fill you with the fear of God and the awe of His majesty are very important.

"Your words were found, and I ate them, And Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart; For I am called by Your name, O LORD of hosts" ~Jeremiah 15:16

It saddens me to see so many Christians not filled with this joy; but it is a blessing, I assure you, perhaps one of the biggest joys of being a Christian.  So I would like to encourage those who are called by the name of the LORD of hosts to be filled with a joy and rejoicing for God; and, His word.

And also,  please comment; its what keeps me going! Why write to produce good, if no one will read it and therefore it will not produce good?

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Jeremiah 9 - A Law Worth Crying For

WOW! I am REALLY liking the book of Jeremiah! I was reading chapter 9 earlier this week and it was AMAZING. 

Verse 3 says "They are not valiant for the truth on the earth.
For they proceed from evil to evil,
And they do not know Me,” says the Lord." WOW! Again, we should have a hunger, love, passion and desire for the truth.

In verses 12-21 a perfect picture is painted. We are to follow God's law; and to not to follow it should bring us to tears. Jeremiah truly is the "crying prophet".  God is perfect, omnipotent-He ALONE has the perfect law and that is in His word.  What we think about what is fair, what is wrong, what is right does not matter. We should look to sola scriptura. In this day and age many do not recognise this. 

12 Who is the wise man who may understand this? And who is he to whom the mouth of the Lord has spoken, that he may declare it? Why does the land perish and burn up like a wilderness, so that no one can pass through?

(note, We should be the wise man. Truly, sin will bring desolation.)

13 And the Lord said, “Because they have forsaken My law which I set before them, and have not obeyed My voice, nor walked according to it, 
(note, This is all to common in a day when independence is prized; but let us follow Him, He is truth.)

14 but they have walked according to the dictates of their own hearts and after the Baals, which their fathers taught them,”
(note, we are worldly, sinful people and deserve nothing but the worst. Our hearts lead us astray-but lets conquer them!  We can learn from previous generations; but that does not mean that EVERYTHING is right-they do wrong to and that is part of what we learn from.  We should look to God and scripture alone-if meer people say otherwise, only stick to what the Bible says.)

15 therefore thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: “Behold, I will feed them, this people, with wormwood, and give them water of gall to drink. 16 I will scatter them also among the Gentiles, whom neither they nor their fathers have known. And I will send a sword after them until I have consumed them.”
(note, when we follow our sinful desires we become like the world and will soon become part of the world.  We can be completely consumed in our sin. However, we also have the ability to be completely consumed in God, and His word. Is that not a better option?)

The People Mourn in Judgment

17 Thus says the Lord of hosts:

“Consider and call for the mourning women,
That they may come;
And send for skillful wailing women,
That they may come.

(note, sinning against God and not obeying His law is truly something worth crying over.)

18 Let them make haste
And take up a wailing for us,
That our eyes may run with tears,
And our eyelids gush with water.

(Wow, this paints a perfect picture of the seriousness of sin.)

19 For a voice of wailing is heard from Zion:
‘How we are plundered!
We are greatly ashamed,
Because we have forsaken the land,
Because we have been cast out of our dwellings.’”

(note, We should be truly ashamed. Our sin will cast us out of our dwellings. What kind of dwelling would this be? Think about it.)

20 Yet hear the word of the Lord, O women,
And let your ear receive the word of His mouth;

(note, let us pay attention to the very inspired word of our Lord's mouth!)

Teach your daughters wailing,
And everyone her neighbor a lamentation.

(note, we are so in sin; all we should do is cry and wail. -might as well teach our children in; it is all they will see.)

21 For death has come through our windows,
Has entered our palaces,
To kill off the children— no longer to be outside!
And the young men— no longer on the streets!

(note, don't let sin overcome you; it WILL consume you. We need to set an example of future generations.)

This is not the whole chapter; but the parts that especially stood out to me.  Please remember that my "notes" are merely what I thought about when I read it; I do not believe that it is necessarily what God specifically meant when He said those words.  It is not a "modernised version" of what was previously stated; again, ONLY what I thought when I read it. Please let me know if you think there is something I should add. -or if you think I made a biblical mistake in one of my notes. Thank you!  I want to make sure I only write the TRUTH.

-and please comment; its what keeps me going! Why write to produce good, if no one will read it and therefore it will not produce good?