Thursday, April 30, 2009

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

King David on Confession

Finally, I confessed all my sins to you
and stopped trying to hide my guilt.
I said to myself, “I will confess my rebellion to the LORD.”
And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone.
Psalm 32:5

Greg Paulus is a Tar Heel Fan!

Here’s a picture of former Duke star Greg Paulus, wearing some Tar Heels gear and holding a baby wearing both pink and baby blue. I always knew he was a Tar Heel fan. Aren't we all?

John MacArthur on the Emergent church and reaching the Culture

The bottom line, I think, in the movement is that it is a denial of the clarity of Scripture. It is a denial that we can know what the Bible really says. And as I said, it’s amorphous because there’s a mish-mash of approaches to this and a mish-mash of styles and things like that. But they have embraced this mystery as if it’s true spirituality. And so, it becomes celebration of mystery, a celebration of ignorance, a celebration that we can’t really know. I think it’s just another form of liberalism. I think it’s just another form of denying the clarity of Scripture. And I think there’s a motive behind it…

the Bible is clear. They don’t want that clarity. They want to run from the light. Scripture is light, it is not darkness, but they like the darkness because their deeds are evil. So I think the motive behind this whole Emerging Church thing, whether it’s a conscious or unconscious motive, is discomfort over what the Bible really says, whether it’s about the gospel or whether it’s about sin, virtue…they don’t like it and so the out is…Well, it’s not clear. This is just another way to set the Bible aside…

Every culture apart from the gospel and apart from salvation is anti-God. I don’t care whether you’re Hottentot, walking around with no clothes on in Africa, or whether you’re a tribal person in Indonesia, or whether you lived in the fifteenth century, or whether you are in the Roman culture of the first century, all human society thinking culture is ungodly and anti-biblical.

What is so interesting about this movement is the Emerging Church sanctifies the culture. The Emerging church sanctifies the post-modern culture as if it is legitimate and says if we’re going to reach these people, we’ve got to become like these people. That’s never been the biblical way…never. The Bible does not change. It’s not a chameleon, it doesn’t shift and change and adapt to culture. It confronts culture. It confronts an aboriginal culture. It confronts an ancient culture. It confronts a modern culture. It confronts every trend with fixed unchanging truth in every situation. And the Emerging Church not only is unwilling to believe the clear statement of Scripture, but it’s unwilling to take the clear statement of Scripture and confront the culture. It wants to let the culture define what Christianity should be

Monday, April 27, 2009

Tullian on reaching the Culture

Being only 36, Tchividjian may look like the typical trendy and modern pastor of today who would try to make his church more relevant and more appealing to draw the unchurched.
But he is among those Christian leaders who believe that main problem churches face is not that they are culturally out of touch, but that they are theologically out of tune.

“We need to remember that God has established his church as an alternative society, not to compete with or copy this world, but to offer a refreshing alternative to it,” Tchividjian writes in his recently released book, Unfashionable: Making a Difference in the World by Being Different.

“When we forget this, we inadvertently communicate to our culture that we have nothing unique to offer, nothing deeply spiritual or profoundly transforming. Tragically, this leaves many in our world looking elsewhere for the difference they crave,” he adds.

For Tchividjian, whose grandfather is the renowned Rev. Billy Graham, what drew him back to church after years of chasing the things of the world was his encounter at the age of 21 with the “radical difference” he had been longing for.
“I was a seeker being reached, not by a man-centered, trendy show, but by a God-centered, transcendent atmosphere,” he recalls.

And Jacksonville-born preacher is convinced that serious seekers today aren’t looking for something appealing and trendy.
“They’re looking for something deeper than what’s currently in fashion,” Tchividjian insists.
Through Unfashionable, the south Florida pastor makes the case for Christians to make a difference in this world by being different from the world. He explains what it means to be out of style in the culture, to pattern ideas, beliefs, methods, and tastes in alignment with God’s ways and not the world’s.
He also makes a passionate plea for Christians to stop trying so hard to be cool, to fit in, and instead be courageous enough to be different.

“Truthfulness, not trendiness is what new generations are thirsting for,” Tchividjian writes. “They want to know there are people out there with their sights set on a different world.”
According to a study by the Barna Group in late 2007, the most common elements that young people said they sought from church were "to worship or make a connection with God" (45 percent described this as very important) and "to better understand what I believe" (42 percent). About one-third of teens said they wanted "to spend time with close friends" (34 percent), "to get encouraged or inspired" (34 percent), or "to volunteer to help others" (30 percent).
Tchividjian hopes to mobilize a generation of God-saturated missionaries who will “live against the world for the world” and not be “seduced by cool” or what’s fashionable.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Highway to Hell sung at Church

In an effort to reach the lost (and try to be cool) New Spring Church opened up their Easter service with the song "Highway to Hell" by AC/DC. Listen to it below and tell me what you think. I personally don't think they did a good job of singing it. The song leader sounds like an American Idol reject.
When I was lost I would have went to an AC/DC concert to hear this song, not church. Most lost people would literally laugh at a bunch of old dudes trying to be cool singing secular music in church. Sad day for Christianity.
I think next month they are gonna do some 2Live Crew songs.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Good Answer

Carrie Prejean, the current reigning Miss California and first runner up in the 2009 Miss USA pageant this past Sunday evening, did the unthinkable when answering her final question of the evenings competition: she told the truth and wasn't politically correct.

Perez Hilton asked her the explosive of the night about gay marriage - does she think it should be legalized in all 50 states or not... Carrie was kind, composed, and truthful - she doesn't flinch. Her response was not politically correct and in the end, most think cost her the Miss USA title. Perez grossly exaggerated after the TV show that most people booed her response and then insults her by calling her "a dumb b*%&$." Watch the video below; I'm not certain what Perez was hearing, but the crowd overwhelming supported her comment.

BTW, Carrie is a Christian and according to her bio, her life's verse is Phil. 4:13. I for one am grateful to the Lord for her unashamed conviction on this issue - especially in that arena. Pray for her beloved, for many opportunities will be coming her way to speak on this issue and share her faith in Christ as a result of her gracious boldness this past Sunday evening.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Don't Waste Your Life

Lecrae speakin tha truth.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Light a Candle or Curse the Darkness?

There is a Buddhist saying, adopted by the Quakers as a motto for their aid to the needy: "It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness." It is in passing the light to others that one disperses the shadows . . . I often see boxing matches on television where the boxers lose because they only defend themselves without ever attacking. The same is true today for the Christian Church. It is by going on the offensive that the Mission will save the world.

Please understand me: it is not uniquely the church's mission to save men socially, economically, politically. But above all else, it is the church that must save men's souls. If the church does not accomplish this task, nothing else will. A church that does not evangelize is useless on earth. If the Church does not go to the front, with zeal and faith, the world will die, however it might be magnificently equipped technologically, monstrously rich and developed, endowed with superior social legislation and possessed of the best possible material conditions for living comfortably--this world will die because it has no soul. Unless the world has this peace of the soul that authentic conversion and the assurance of eternal life can give, all is useless and in vain. The night comes, when no one can work. Let us work, then, without cease.

Pastor Pierre-Charles Toureille who risked his life during World War II to keep Jews out of Nazi death camps.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

James McDonald on Richard Dawkins

I have been reading the book God Delusion by Richard Dawkins, the noted British atheist. I have found it thoroughly disagreeable but at the same time refreshing. Dawkins insists that ‘religion’ should not be in an untouchable category where it cannot be analyzed for veracity or criticized for silly inconsistencies. I could not agree more. A man’s faith is not so personal that it needn’t stand up to the rigors of intellectual analysis. I have often said that the walls of Christianity are not so thin that an honest skeptic seeking truth will somehow poke through and reveal the whole thing to be a fraud. The truths of Christianity have satisfied some of the greatest minds in human history.

When it comes to the God who created an orderly universe and set it up to operate according to principles that scientists can analyze and verify, there should be no reticence to submit theology to the same rigorous analysis.

Where Dawkins is so very wrong is in his total disdain for theology itself. Because he believes that there is no God he also believes that theology is a ‘non-discipline.’ The result is that his analysis of prayer, miracles, and impact of faith upon life is deeply flawed. He knows nothing about prayer, for example, but reports a study as credible that contradicts almost every biblical teaching on the subject of prayer. He judges prayer as a waste of time, though the prayers he analyzed may have been offered by sinful people, without faith or fervency in regard to people and situations they knew nothing about personally etc. Theologically speaking, the study itself was extremely amateurish. ( I don’t see God especially excited about jumping through the hoops of people trying to prove Him wrong, I doubt He was even rocked by their unbelief). It’s like complaining that the car won’t run when you asked a toddler to start it and gave him no keys to a locked car. Yeah, that’s probably not gonna work, but that doesn’t mean that all cars are a waste of time.

Another example of this theological naivety would be Dawkins complete misunderstanding of the role of faith. He feels ‘we’ hide behind faith whenever the facts don’t line up with our theology. Theologians and students of Scripture however understand that God Himself is the one who has decreed that He be known by faith rather than by sight, (of course God could make Dawkins into a believer in about 60 seconds). We understand that God has chosen the volitional worship of a few who see the whispers of His presence and embrace Him by faith, rather than the forced robotic worship of the masses who are driven to their knees in an instance of His fully manifested presence. If Dawkins had studied a little more theology he could interact with an argument like that rather than refuting things he simply does not understand.

Any careful study of the existence of God must begin with a respect for the history of theology. Dawkins clearly has no regard for theology and as a result fails at many points even in his analysis. Would we ask a cab driver to start from scratch in his study of biology? Would we expect a nuclear physicist to go back to the drawing board in his study of weather patterns? Of course the answer is no; any credible student begins by reviewing the existing literature on the subject. Dawkins clearly has not done that and considers such research a waste of time.

Dawkins assault on faith would be more compelling if he really understood the best reasons for faith. Christianity need not hide behind an anti-intellectual facade, and Dawkins should not be allowed to either as he so publicly ridicules the existence of the God who made him.

William Lane Craig on Postmodernism

“The idea that we live in a postmodern culture is a myth. In fact, a postmodern culture is an impossibility; it would be utterly unlivable. People are not relativistic when it comes to matters of science, engineering, and technology; rather, they are relativistic and pluralistic in matters of religion and ethics. But, of course, that’s not postmodernism; that’s modernism! That’s just old-line verificationism, which held that anything you can’t prove with your five senses is a matter of personal taste. We live in a culture that remains deeply modernist.”

William Lane Craig, Christianity Today, July 2008

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

The only good snake is a dead snake!

That is what my grandmother always said, with hoe in hand.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Signs Your Spouse is Cheating

You have a sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach, something is not right but you can’t quite figure out what that feeling is about. Your spouse has become distant, he/she is working late on a regular basis or, maybe your spouse has moved out of the house with no explanation. You suspect there may be someone else but every time you bring it up with your spouse, he/she denies the possibility. All the signs are there but you don’t have any proof. So, pay attention to the signs and your instinct but, be careful and don’t confuse signs with proof.

1. "I'm not in love with you anymore." If you hear these words, a big warning bell should go off. This is one of the most consistent things a cheating spouse will say. Your spouse may have a deep, loving bond with you but, intense feelings of passion can override the bond with you and cause your spouse to loose sight of his/her true feelings. The cheating spouse will develop what I call hormone - induced amnesia. The surging hormones and passion they feel in their new relationship can cause some very skewed thinking.

2. "We are just friends."This is also another very predictable statement that will come from a cheating spouse. If your spouse is spending more and more time with this new “friend” then there is probably more to it than mere friendship. Your spouse may feel they have a lot in common with this person, that this person understands them and things they are going through. Whatever the reasons for the friendship, it’s a big warning sign and one you should take seriously.

3. A sudden need for privacy.
If things the two of you used to share openly suddenly become private pay attention cause something is probably up. He/she may start password protecting computer activity. Cell phone and credit card bills may be hidden. If you ask why or attempt to find out information that used to be common knowledge between the two of you, you will be accused of snooping or trying to control your spouse. Big warning sign!

4. “I need some space to figure my feelings for you.”Men and women who are involved with someone else will request more space, time alone or away from the family. They may say it is due to confusion over their feelings or stress at work. This can be a sign that there is someone else and the spouse is trying to figure out ways to have more freedom.

5. Regular work habits change.
Working late, going to work at odd hours or, putting in more time than is normal on work related issues can be indications that a spouse is cheating.

6. Spending a large amount of time on the computer.
In today’s world, with modern technology, a person looking for an affair doesn’t even have to leave their home. The ease of internet chat rooms, online dating sites and secret email accounts has caused an alarming increase in emotional affairs.

If your spouse is online more than usual, hanging out in chat rooms and visiting pornographic websites then you have reason to be alarmed.

7. Secretive phone calls and more time spent on the phone.
Emotional affairs occur primarily via the phone, especially cell phones. If you find your spouse hanging up suddenly when you enter the room or erasing the history on the cell phone and becoming defensive when asked about it, then you might want to check your phone records.

8. Behavior that just doesn’t add up.Not being where he/she was expected to be. Missing time they can’t explain. Money that isn’t accounted for. Receipts for things you don't have. Missing clothing. Clothing that does not belong to your family. Being caught in little lies about the details of the day.

9. Your Own fears and suspicionsIf you find yourself looking for excuses for your spouse's behavior or trying to convince yourself that they would never cheat then that is a warning sign. Your intuition is frequently one of the best indicators that something is wrong. If you suspect your spouse might be cheating on you, do some investigating and then talk to him/her about what you've found. Do it in a way that is calm and courteous. Ask for honesty. Be prepared for lies. It is a sad fact that people having affairs become excellent liars. People who never told a lie before in their lives. Trust your gut instinct but get hard, cold proof also.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Did Rick Warren Lie?

Did Rick Warren Lie last night on Larry King Live? Watch this video and you tell me.

Sounds like Rick Warren lied to me. What do you think?

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Good Question

This picture was taken at the National Championship game.
In the picture are former Heels Jamison, Carter, Peppers, and Makhtar.

One Shining Moment


Sunday, April 5, 2009

Lloyd Jones on Preaching with Passion

The Apostle Paul was a giant intellect, one of the master minds of the centuries; bu the often wept as he spoke and preached. He was moved to tears. Where has this notion come from that if you are a great intellect you show no emotion? How ridiculous and fatuous it is! A man who is not moved by these things, I maintain, has never really understood them.

D. Martyn Lloyd Jones

Friday, April 3, 2009

God Help US!

(taken from Denny Burke)

Catholic Online reports that Dr. Katherine Ragsdale has recently been appointed as the sixth and newest president of Episcopal Divinity School in Cambridge, MA. She has a sermon that is published online that reveals that she is not only pro-choice, but pro-abortion. Here she is in her own words:

“When a woman wants a child but can’t afford one because she hasn’t the education necessary for a sustainable job, or access to health care, or day care, or adequate food, it is the abysmal priorities of our nation, the lack of social supports, the absence of justice that are the tragedies; the abortion is a blessing.

“And when a woman becomes pregnant within a loving, supportive, respectful relationship; has every option open to her; decides she does not wish to bear a child; and has access to a safe, affordable abortion – there is not a tragedy in sight — only blessing. The ability to enjoy God’s good gift of sexuality without compromising one’s education, life’s work, or ability to put to use God’s gifts and call is simply blessing.

“These are the two things I want you, please, to remember – abortion is a blessing and our work is not done. Let me hear you say it: abortion is a blessing and our work is not done. Abortion is a blessing and our work is not done. Abortion is a blessing and our work is not done.”

The double tragedy of this story is that the culture of death has an ostensibly Christian spokesperson in the new president of the Episcopal Divinity School. The key word here is “ostensibly.” Dr. Ragsdale is a false teacher, and her teaching is “Christian” in name only. There’s nothing here that even approximates an authentically Christian faith.

Matthew 7:15-20
15 Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. 16 You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes, nor figs from thistles, are they? 17 Even so, every good tree bears good fruit; but the bad tree bears bad fruit. 18 A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. 19 Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. 20 So then, you will know them by their fruits.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Thoughts about Jesus

To abandon all, to strip one's self of all, in order to seek and follow Jesus Christ naked to Bethlehem where He was born, naked to the hall where He was scourged, and naked to Calvary where He died on the cross, is so great a mystery that neither the thing nor the knowledge of it, is given to any but through faith in the Son of God.-- John Wesley

All God's plans have the mark of the cross on them, and all His plans have death to self in them. --E. M Bounds

The Blood deals with what we have done, whereas the Cross deals with what we are. The Blood disposes of our sins, while the Cross strikes at the root of our capacity for sin. --Watchman Nee

Salvation is not some felicitous state to which we can lift ourselves by our own bootstraps after the contemplation of sufficiently good examples. It is an utterly new creation into which we are brought by our death in Jesus' death and our resurrection in his. It comes not out of our own best efforts, however well-inspired or successfully pursued, but out of the shipwreck of all human efforts whatsoever. --Robert Farrer Capon

Men have said that the cross of Christ was not a heroic thing, but I want to tell you that the cross of Jesus Christ has put more heroism in the souls of men than any other event in human history. –John G. Lake

Today Jesus Christ is being dispatched as the Figurehead of a Religion, a mere example. He is that, but he is infinitely more; He is salvation itself, He is the Gospel of God. --Oswald Chambers

That is why He warned people to “count the cost” before becoming Christians. “Make no mistake,” He says, “if you let me, I will make you perfect. The moment you put yourself in my hands, that is what you are in for. Nothing less, or other than that. –C.S. Lewis

Learn to know Christ and him crucified. Learn to sing to him, and say, "Lord Jesus, you are my righteousness, I am your sin. You have taken upon yourself what is mine and given me what is yours. You have become what you were not so that I might become what I was not." --Martin Luther