Archive - March, 2010

Easter Week Questions For A Four-Year Old

Our 4-year old daughter Karis is good at memorizing. These are some questions we’re working through this week. They are not just applicable at Easter. I’m posting them in case others might find this a good springboard for your own catechizing. The answers are admittedly a bit short and simplistic, but I figured that would make it easier for her to memorize and we can build on these concepts later. And there’s a bit of repetition, which I figure will only foster better memorization. Also, each can be associated with Scripture texts, which she can also be memorizing.
Q: Who is Jesus?
A: Jesus is God’s Son.
Q: Why did Jesus come to earth?
A: God sent Jesus to live and die in the place of every sinner who would ever trust in Him, love Him, and obey Him.
Q: What do we celebrate this week?
A: The death and resurrection of Jesus.
Q: Why did Jesus die?
A: The wages of sin is death. Jesus died for the sins of other people. Jesus took their punishment. And Jesus perfectly obeyed God on their behalf.
Q: Which people did Jesus die for?
A: Every sinner who ever puts their trust in Him, loves Him, and obeys Him. To them, Jesus is a merciful Savior, Lord, and Treasure.
Q: Are you a sinner?
A: Yes. All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.
Q: What are sins?
A: Disobeying Mommy and Daddy and not doing what I should.
Q: Was Jesus a sinner?
A: No. Jesus never sinned. Jesus rose from the dead because death had no power over Him.
Q: Do you need a Savior?
A: Yes
Q: Who is the only Savior to whom you should go?
A: Jesus, God’s Son, who lived and died on behalf of every sinner who would ever trust in Him, love Him, and obey Him.

John Piper To Take Extended Leave

I have enormous respect and affection for John Piper, not just because of his preaching, speaking, and writing abilities, but because of his tenacious pursuit of personal godliness. May God greatly bless his soul and that of his family as he takes an extended leave from May 1 through December 31. Today, he posted this letter of explanation. What makes this leave different is that Pastor John will step back from almost all his speaking engagements and from book writing:

In this leave, I intend to let go of all of it. No book-writing. No sermon preparation or preaching. No blogging. No Twitter. No articles. No reports. No papers. And no speaking engagements. There is one stateside exception—the weekend devoted to the Desiring God National Conference combined with the inaugural convocation of Bethlehem College and Seminary in October. Noël thought I should keep three international commitments. Our reasoning is that if she could go along, and if we plan it right, these could be very special times of refreshment together.

Read the whole thing. And consider adding him to the list of those for whom you regularly pray.

NPR on McLaren (with Mohler, Ware, and Hamilton)

NPR gives an obviously-slanted perspective on Brian McLaren and his new book, A New Kind of Christianity, ending this 4 min 35 sec segment (which features McLaren, but also Albert Mohler, Bruce Ware, and Jim Hamilton) with this remark:

“Mohler is determined to nip any such trend in the bud. But if McLaren and surveys of young people are any guide, there seems to be an appetite for a different sort of evangelical Christianity.”

This is exactly the sort of trend that the 2010 Ligonier West Coast Conference was about. Painfully, NPR twice refers to McLaren as a “leading evangelical.”
One disturbing statistic mentioned in the segment is from David Campbell and Robert D. Putnam’s book American Grace: How Religion Is Reshaping Our Civic and Political Lives. Apparently, Mr. Campbell’s surveys show that nearly two-thirds of evangelicals under age 35 believe non-Christians can go to heaven, but only 39 percent of those over age 65 believe that.

HT: Denny Burk

2010 Ligonier West Coast Conference Round-Up

I just got back from live-blogging the 2010 Ligonier West Coast Conference. It was a great couple days of fellowship and teaching. Here’s a round-up of the posts:
Session 1 – Michael Horton – The Church Cries “Uncle” (“Sam” That Is)
Session 2 – John MacArthur – Becoming a Better You
Session 3 – Q&A – Horton, MacArthur, Sproul
Session 4 – R.C. Sproul – Good News or Good Advice?
Session 5 – Peter Jones – A Gnostic Gospel
Session 6 – Q&A – Horton, Jones, Sproul
Session 7 – Michael Horton – Moralistic and Therapeutic Deism
Session 8 – R.C. Sproul – Back to Basics

HBO Mini-Series: The Pacific

HBO’s new mini-series entitled The Pacific looks really good. They’ve posted the first episode online for free (looks like you need to sign-in).
The series is based on the memoirs of Eugene Sledge (With the Old Breed) and Robert Leckie (Helmet for My Pillow). I’ve read With the Old Breed and thought it was outstanding (here are some great quotes from Eugene Sledge).
Here is the trailer for The Pacific:


The End of Book Publishing?

With the rising use of the Internet, mobile applications, Facebook, and Twitter, many have speculated that book publishing will be left by the wayside — as we saw with vinyl records soon after CDs hit the market. This cute video is effective – it begs to differ (and I agree).

HT: Michael Hyatt

Bart Stupak: How Disappointing

Wow. How could Representative Stupak be so easily duped? It is clear that Obama’s executive order cannot prevent the health care legislation from being fully implemented, as written (including the public funding for abortion). But it seems that Stupak is not as strong as many of us thought. We should have known better. This video was recorded last Fall:

HT: The Corner

Q&A with C.J. Mahaney on Manhood Issues

An array of excellent, practical instruction for young men (14-19) and husbands/fathers alike on matters pertaining to manhood, humility, servant-leadership, wisdom, and character cultivation:

Q&A on Biblical Masculinity from Sovereign Grace Ministries on Vimeo.

The books CJ mentions are:
1. Derek Kidner, Proverbs.
2. Ed Welch, When People Are Big and God is Small.
3. John Ensor, Doing Things Right in Matters of the Heart.
4. John Piper and Wayne Grudem, Recovering Biblical Manhood and Womanhood.

RC Sproul Interviews Stephen Meyer

Dr. Stephen Meyer (Ph.D., Cambridge) is Senior Fellow at the Discovery Institute outside of Seattle, Washington. He has spend twenty years researching cosmology, biology, and metaphysics and is currently at the forefront of the “Intelligent Design” movement – a broad coalition of researchers whose findings demonstrate the mathematical improbability of a godless universe and (conversely) the rationality of believing in an Intelligent Creator. Meyer is the author of Signature in the Cell: DNA and the Evidence for Intelligent Design. I’m glad that Dr. R.C. Sproul recently had the opportunity to interview Dr. Meyer:

HT: Ligonier

Loving God With All Your Mind

Gene Veith, in Loving God With All Your Mind (pp. 150-151):

[Jesus] tells us to love God with “all” our mind. In other words, everything the mind is capable of doing is to be devoted to loving God. It would seem then that if your mind can spin out complex mathematical calculations, you are to love God in mathematics. If your mind can plan a business, design a building, analyze a novel, understand a philosophical problem, or imagine a story, you are to love God in your planning, designing, analyzing, understanding, or imagining. When Jesus says “all” the mind, He is claiming every mental faculty we have.
When He says “all your mind,” He is applying this claim in a very personal way. Not everyone has the same ability. Someone who is physically handicapped may not have the same physical “strength” that a star athlete does. That does not matter. Whether it means serving God from a hospital bed or from an Olympic pavilion, both are called to love God with all of their strength. In the same way, “all your mind” encompasses a wide range of talents and abilities. Some minds are gifted in the sciences, some in the arts. Some minds are oriented to academia and higher education; some are interested in more mundane spheres. No one set of talents is better than any other, and every calling is equal before the Lord. The point is, whatever our calling, God demands all that we can do and all that
we can think.
The whole educational and intellectual enterprise, for a Christian, should be caught up in the desire to love God “with all your mind.” The whole process of curiosity, questioning, and discovery can be a journey, full of wonder and praise, into the mind of God, who created everything. Whatever can be studied, whether human nature or the physical universe, is what it is because God willed it and made it. To uncover the hidden laws that govern matter, to disclose the patterns of subatomic particles, to discover how human beings grow and interact, to discern an underlying pattern in history or in astronomy—all of these amount to nothing less than discovering God’s will.

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