Saturday, September 23, 2006

the swiss army verse

"For by a single offering he has perfected for all time those who are being sanctified." - Hebrews 10:14

There are some verses in the bible that are so packed full of meaning and significance, so as to cause one to read and re-read them for a period of time. Bye the way, this is a great definition of "biblical meditation". The above verse is one such example. Read it again carefully.

Consider how many false ideas this verse demolishes. It's like a swiss army knife, it has a tool for everything you could possibly need.

Just a small number of things this verse clears up for the believer:
1. We know Christ's sacrifice was final and complete.
2. He didn't do a half-way job, it was a perfect sacrifice. We can add nothing to it.
3. It covers all sin past, present and future.
4. It points to limited atonement; Christ died for His people.
5. It points us to perseverance; He will complete what He started.
6. It assures us of eternal security being linked to the cross.
7. It affirms, not a sinless life for the believer, but a perfect position before God based on His substitution for us.

any more thoughts?

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

no strings attached?

Everybody needs to have some understanding of predestination since it’s in the Bible.

The dictionary says that “predestinate” means, “to foreordain to an earthly or eternal lot or destiny by divine decree.” Or, in simpler terms predestination means, “God’s decision as to what will happen to a person, especially after they die (heaven or hell).”

There are two basic responses to the idea of predestination:
1. God makes His choice based on his foreknowledge. This means that God (who is omniscient) chooses those He saw from the beginning who would choose God, have faith and follow Christ.

2. From all eternity God decided to save some members of the human race and to let the rest of the human race perish. God made a choice – He chose some individuals to be saved unto everlasting blessedness in heaven, and He chose others to pass over, allowing them to suffer the consequences of their sins, eternal punishment in hell. He chooses based on His good pleasure who will receive grace and who will not. Those that He gives grace, are changed. They desire God and receive the gift of faith and salvation.

- R.C. Sproul

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Friday, September 15, 2006

Hermen E. Utics

...No, it's not a nerdly guy, it's how to read the bible!

“By referring to the gospel as the hermeneutical key I mean that proper interpretation of any part of the Bible requires us to relate it to the person and work of Jesus. This was recognized in Article III of the Chicago Statement on Biblical Hermeneutics, which says, ‘We affirm that the Person and work of Jesus Christ are the central focus of the entire Bible.’ We have already considered some of the ramifications of Jesus’ post-resurrection claims that all the Scriptures are about him. This is another way of saying that Jesus is the sole mediator of the truth of God. This mediatorial role has great significance for how we understand the Bible. For there is one God; there is also one mediator between God and humankind, Christ Jesus, himself human who gave himself a ransom for all (1 Timothy 2:5-6). The Jesus who mediates the word of God to us is the Jesus who is defined in terms of his historic saving act. The meaning of the Bible, in that case, is tied to the saving work of Jesus
(Graeme Goldsworthy, Preaching the Whole Bible as Christian Scripture, p. 84).

Monday, September 11, 2006

on weekly communion

"Perhaps the idea of coming to the Table weekly is troubling, but why? The most common argument against weekly celebration of the Supper is that it might become routine. Doubtless this is a danger, but by this rationale all churches should hold only monthly worship services so that the sermons and singing will be truly meaningful. The absurdity of the argument is obvious. The possibility of abuse is no excuse for not making use of the divinely instituted means of grace.

Perhaps there is a more fundamental reason we are reluctant to observe the Supper more regularly. One fears that the simple gospel message of Christ offered for and to sinners is not really on the evangelical agenda—or credenda for that matter. (Agenda is Latin for “things to do,” and credenda is Latin for “things to believe.”) It might be that regular observance of the Supper would require a transformation of most evangelical worship services. It is difficult to imagine how a solemnly joyful service of the Supper would fit into some “seeker sensitive” services.

Weekly Communion would also affect the preaching by tending to orient the service around Christ’s finished work and away from the constant diet of “how to” messages. The juxtaposition of “Ten Steps to a Happy Marriage” followed by a Communion service is too jarring to contemplate. Simply considering a weekly Communion a hypothetical possibility in our time seems to present radical challenges to evangelical piety." - R. Scott Clark

a bittersweet sojourn

The Christian life is one of constant repentance over sin and constant clinging to Christ's bloody, nail-driven hands; sorrow and bliss walk hand in hand with us on our earthly sojourn, until sorrow finally departs on that glorious day when our beautiful Redeemer returns!

faith comes by hearing, not fads

What’s the difference between the latest, greatest religious attraction at the stadium and an ordinary service at your local church, where the Word is properly preached and the sacraments are properly administered? In one, the religious ego is fed; we hear the hype and come to believe – or, at least, to hope – that after having tried so many other spiritual fads, at least this one will do the trick. We’ll raise ourselves from earth to heaven, from blahs to bliss, from strain to living at the center of God’s blessing.

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Wednesday, September 06, 2006


"When a certain rhetorician was asked what was the chief rule in eloquence, he replied, 'Delivery'; what was the second rule, 'Delivery'; what was the third rule, 'Delivery'; so if you ask me concerning the precepts of the Christian religion, first, second and third, and always I would answer, 'Humility'. - Augustine

Friday, September 01, 2006

are you a deiphobe?

"Even the Christian must fear God. But it is another kind of fear. It is a fear rather of what might have been than of what is; it is a fear of what would come were we not in Christ. Without such fear there can be no true love; for love of the Saviour is proportioned to one’s horror of that from which man has been saved. And how strong are the lives that are suffused with such a love! They are lives brave, not because the realities of life have been ignored, but because they have first been faced — lives that are founded upon the solid foundation of God’s grace. May such lives be ours!" - J. Gresham Machen