Saturday, February 20, 2010

My Choice

My Choice by Bill McChesney
Martyred at the age of twenty-eight while serving in Congo (formerly Zaire).

I want my breakfast served at eight,
With ham and eggs upon the plate
A well-broiled steak I'll eat at one,
And dine again when day is done.

I want an ultramodern home
And in each room a telephone
Soft carpets, too, upon the floors,
And pretty drapes to grace the doors.

A cozy place of lovely things,
Like easy chairs with inner springs,
And then, I'll get a small T.V. -
Of course, "I'm careful what I see."

I want my wardrobe, too, to be
Of neatest, finest quality,
With latest style in suit and vest:
Why should not Christians have the best?

But then the Master I can hear
In no uncertain voice, so clear:
"I bid you come and follow Me,
The lowly Man of Galilee."

"Birds of the air have made their nest
And foxes in their holes find rest,
But I can offer you no bed;
No place have I to lay My head."

In shame I hung my head and cried,
How could I spurn the Crucified?
Could I forget the way He went,
The sleepless nights in prayer He spent?

For forty days without a bite,
Alone He fasted day and night;
Despised, rejected - on He went,
and did not stop till veil He rent!

A man of sorrows and of grief
No earthly friend to bring relief;
"Smitten of God," the prophet said
Mocked, beaten, bruised, His blood ran red.

If He be God, and died for me,
No sacrifice too great can be
For me, a mortal man, to make;
I'll do it all for Jesus' sake.

Yes, I will tread the path He trod,
No other way will please my God;
So, henceforth, this my choice shall be,
My choice for all eternity.

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Seriousness of Gospel Living

Galatians 5:19-21

"Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, ... those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God."

The kingdom of God here is not just an icing on the cake, something you can have that is extra to salvation. It is the culmination of redemption. To say you will not inherit the kingdom of God is to say that you are outside of God's redemptive plan. How serious must our practice, our living, be for Paul to use such language? Nothing less than salvation is on the line. However, notice that Paul does not say that those who DO NOT practice such things WILL inherit the kingdom of God. Rather, "If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit." Those who are of the kingdom are of a different character because of the Spirit's regenerative work, not because they are attempting to gain salvation. We do not practice such things because "those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires." So let us contemplate the seriousness of Gospel living, and live accordingly.

Monday, February 8, 2010

For Glory and for Beauty

Exodus 28:2

"You shall make holy garments for Aaron your brother, for glory and for beauty."

I find this statement very interesting. It only occurs one more time in the same vein in Exodus 28:40. They were both intended for the garments of the high priest. Why would God want the garments of the high priest to be for glory and for beauty? I believe it is because the temporal high priest on this earth was a reflection of the perfect High Priest, Jesus Christ. The Israelites were to look at the garments of the high priest and see glory and beauty because Jesus Christ is glorious and beautiful. This was to prepare God's people for the coming of Jesus Christ. It was a lesson for the people. Glory leaves us amazed; beauty makes us delight. The description and purpose of the garments are in the Bible to help us understand that we must be amazed by Him and also to be delighted in Him. Let us not only sing of His glory, but also of His beauty.

Monday, February 1, 2010

How Quickly We Turn

Exodus 24:7

"Then he took the book of the covenant and read it in the hearing of the people; and they said, 'All that the Lord has spoken we will do, and we will be obedient!'"

Only eight chapters later this same crowd will build a golden calf. This should humble us. This should show us that we are unable to keep the Holy law by our own strength. No matter how many times we say "we will obey," we will still sin. Let us be honest with out hearts, confessing to God that we are unable to obey and asking of God for the strength to obey. Let us also be thankful that our eternal security does not lie in our ability to perform but in the finished work of Christ.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Lex Talionis and Abortion

Exodus 21:23-25

"But if there is any further injury, then you shall appoint as a penalty life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth , hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise."

This statement here has been termed the lex talionis, "the law of retribution." This is not mentioned for all the laws in the Bible. One great myth that liberals like to bring up is that the lex talionis was meant for all circumstances. There are times when the law of retribution is not carried out, for instance if a man had killed someone accidentally, then the punishment will not be life for life (20:13). It is interesting to me that this law of retribution is only stated here in a case of a pregnant woman being struck so that she gives birth prematurely. The injury here could mean the injury done to the mother, but from context it seems to point to the injury done to the prematurely born baby. This tells me that God here is protecting the life of the unborn, treating the baby in the womb as a person worthy to be defended by the Divine Law. God used such descriptive language and laid out a severe punishment with such emphasis, it should be no wonder as to what God's position is concerning abortion. God protected the unborn in His Law; we should strive to protect the unborn in ours, even if it is protecting them from their own mothers.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Week in Review 01/22/10

What Did Your Pastor Do This Week
This week was the week I was supposed to get over my sickness, but the rain and few bad decisions didn't help all too much. For one thing, I was cold all the time, and the weather aggravated my throat causing me to cough more than I was coughing previously. On top of that, for some odd reason, though my body was still weak, I decided to play a full on five-on-five basketball game. Not only did my legs cramp up pretty badly, my cough got worse. I knew I should have caught up with work and relaxed instead. Still, I really did enjoy this week, and now looking forward to our Bread and Word Fellowship that we didn't have in a long time. Looking forward to a great weekend!

Interesting Happenings
A student looked at another boy's baby picture and after laughing a long time said, "Don't worry, I was once ugly too." I couldn't help but laugh a little.

Check These Links Out
Sproul on Retirement - Piercing, encouraging one-liner.
A Pro-Life Idol - Heart-warming story about an American Idol contestant.
I am... nothing - Ray Ortlund comparing Christ and Adad Nirari the 3rd.
How Much Difference Would It Make? - Francis Schaeffer's sobering insight.
Young Adults Leaving Church? - Interesting myth-buster.
Like the Air They Breathe - The Online Life of Kids - Sobering cultural assessment by Al Mohler.

The Ever-growing Wish List
Dug Down Deep - By Josh Harris

Monday, January 11, 2010

The Goal of True Theology

1 Timothy 1:5

"But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith."

The true end of instruction -and in turn study- is not the accumulation of information; it is godliness. The content of instruction here is undoubtedly biblical theology. This instruction was to produce "love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith." True thoughts of God lead to proper, godly living. It is as Jesus said, "Out of the abundance of your heart the mouth speaks." Are you filling your heart with true theology that overflows into obedience and love towards God? This also means that proper living without proper thoughts of God are not the intention of the Christian faith. There is no place for godless, thoughtless morality in Christianity. All our doing is to be grounded in a true knowledge of God. Do you want to be godly? Fill your minds; fill it with God.