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Archive for June, 2008

The conclusion to Dr. MacArthur’s series on the Church has been posted.

A few of us attended the Doing Hard Things Conference this past weekend in Dallas. I was pleased with the challenge Caleb received from the Harris family (twins, Alex and Bret and father, Gregg). We began going through the book and online study guide as a family tonight. We’ll see what kind of hard things the Taylor kids can accomplish over the course of the next 6 weeks before school begins and beyond. Caleb already has a few ideas. The tension for mom and dad is going to be maintaining high expectations not unrealistic ones.

Who am I kidding. I was challenged as well. I think there is something we over-40 folks can learn from these young rebelutionaries. I have a potential dream that was once again rekindled. It would be a great family project. Everyone would have a role. I can even identify what those roles would be. We’ll see.

PC

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Part 4 of MacArthur’s series on the Church was posted today. Check it out.

Caleb and I are off to the Rebelution Conference in Dallas later this morning with several others from the church.

Blessings.

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This is a two-part post.

Part 1 – Our men (12 and up) have begun reading “The Attributes of God – A Journey Into the Father’s Heart by A.W. Tozer”. Our first week, had we not had to cancel, we would have discussed God’s infinitude. But, it wasn’t a quote on God’s infinitude that grabbed my attention. It was this,

I wouldn’t quote anybody unless there were Scripture to confirm it.

This flies in the face of so many these days who fill the pulpit (or stand on the platform) each Sunday and quote man after man rather than quote the Scriptures (ie John Eldredge more than the Apostle John). To make matters worse, they quote men whose statements cannot be confirmed by the Scriptures at best and at worst contradict or deny them. Don’t get me wrong, I quote others, and I have my favorites like John MacArthur (there’s something about the name John), and the A.W.’s (Pink and Tozer). But they are a trusted few who can always be validated, affirmed, and confirmed by the Scriptures. Which do you quote more often? And when you quote men, can they be confirmed by the Scriptures?

Part 2 – I had a great conversation with Jeremey last night. Of the many things we discussed, the church was one. Not so much Legacy, which we touched upon, but the church as a whole; the true, universal, big “C” Church. An idea we mulled over is that very few who fill sanctuaries and Sunday school classes each week have only a vague idea of what the Church really is and that the local church is to be a “thumbnail” of it, to use competereeze. So what is the Church/church and why should we love it? Here is a series you must read, speaking of quoting others. Part 1 and Part 2 were posted earlier this week. Part 3 was posted today. I’m sure Part 4 will be tomorrow.

Happy reading.

Coram Deo

Pastor Chris

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In an Associated Press story found here, the following statistics reveal how pluralistic our multi-cultural melting pot has become.

Most Americans don’t feel their religion is the only way to eternal life.

The findings, revealed Monday in a survey of 35,000 adults, can either be taken as a positive sign of growing religious tolerance, or disturbing evidence that Americans dismiss or don’t know fundamental teachings of their own faiths.

57% of evangelical church attenders said they believe many religious can lead to eternal life.

70% of Americans with a religious affiliation shared that view, and 68% siad there is more than one true way to interpret the teachings of their own religion.

Religion in America is, indeed 3,000 miles wide and only three inches deep. There’s a growing pluralistic impulse toward tolerance and that is having theological consequences (D. Michael Lindsay, a Rice University Sociologist of Religion).

More than one in four Roman Catholics, mainline Protestants, and Orthodox Christians expressed some doubts about God’s existence, as did six in ten Jews.

Some Christians hold strongly to Jesus’ words as described in John 14:6: “I am the way the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” Others emphasize the wideness of God’s grace.

Only 6 in 10 Catholics described God as “a person with whom people can have a relationship” – which the church teaches – while 3 in 10 described God as an ‘impersonal force’.

But when pastors of 8,000 member churches call The Shack, “one of the most remarkable books I’ve read in years (see this article)”, should we be surprised?

PC

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Sermon Feedback

So. . .as I said in the WOD, thanks for the encouraging words after yesterday’s message. It wasn’t easy. But here’s a thought passed on by Chris H. This isn’t a quote (though I have placed it in block quotes), just a paraphrase of what he said.

It makes sense that verse 32 doesn’t contain an exclusion clause, for if it did, we’d all be justified if we sought a divorce, because as we learned, verses 27-30 say we’re all adulterers.

Great point!

I went on to point out that the Greek word Matthew uses that is translated “unchastity” in the NASB is “porneia” and the word he uses that is translated “adultery” is “moicheuō“. The word “porneia” means illicit sexual intercourse and includes but is not limited adultery which is unlawful sexual intercourse with someone else’s spouse. “Porneia” also includes fornication, incest, homosexuality, lesbianism, bestiality, etc. The only other time Matthew uses the term other than 5:32 and 19:9 is in 15:19 when he uses it along with “moicheuō” which seems to indicate he has something specific in mind other than adultery when he uses the term.

Also, another indicator that Matthew is refering to unfaithfulness during betrothal is the fact that John uses the word “porneia” in 8:31 when the Jewish leaders, indirect though it is, accuse Jesus of being illegitimate.

Of course, this view has it’s detractors. Dr. MacArthur says the following in regards to this argument:

The term cannot refer only to a broken betrothal for several reasons. First, the background of the passage is Deuteronomy 24, which does not deal with broken betrothal but with broken marriage (Christ was not adding to the OT standard but affirming what existed). Second, the indissoluble union in a Hebrew marriage began at betrothal, not consummation (The punishment for adultery was death, the punishment for pre-betrothal [marital] sex was to marry).

We have two heavyweights, MacArthur and Piper, on two different sides of this issue. Is it any wonder I left you to go home, be Berean-like, and be convinced in your own mind (Romans 14).

Anyone have further comments?

PC

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A Disturbing Ruling

Take a look at this. Oh my!

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A Testimony

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