Monthly Archives: September 2013

23 posts

The Pope declares Man can save himself

According to today’s online edition of the UK Independent, Pope Francis has made the cross of Christ irrelevant regarding the forgiveness of sins. Here is an excerpt from the article: “Pope Francis has written a long, open letter to the founder of La Repubblica newspaper, Eugenio Scalfari, stating that non-believers would be forgiven by God if they followed their consciences. In addition here is the link to the actual reply by the Pope to La Repubblica:…/the_pope_s_letter-66336961/… The Pope’s letter is long. While there are many qualifiers and explanations, the point quoted below still stands. It is the work of Christ according to the Scriptures that is the basis of salvation and not the exercise of the conscience. Responding to […]

Adam, 9/11, and Safety

September 11 is here again. The events of this day twelve years ago have changed the way that we live our lives. We now live with feelings of vulnerability that were not present before 9/11/2001. At least, this is true for most Americans.  What was already true for many countries on Earth spread to America that day. Twenty men with simple, low tech weapons took control of four airliners and introduced modern America to mass murder and destruction on our own soil. The question asked again and again is why. The answer lies far beyond the ethnic and religious issues that were the immediate cause of the September tragedies. The larger question is this: what is it in the human […]

The danger of “righteous” irritation

Righteous irritation is a ploy to manipulate and shift guilt while maintaining the posture that you are the one who has been wronged. Righteous irritation, which is actually self-righteous irritation, is delivered in a voice that thinly masks the irritation on the inside.  For example:   “If it is really important, I’ll do that for you. I wouldn’t want to bother you.”   “I am really tired, but I will find a way to get this done. You go ahead and relax.”   “Do we really have to talk about this now? I have a lot on my mind at the moment, but we can talk now if you really need to.”   “Sweetheart, this really better be important. You […]

Children and Discernment

Discernment is one quality that all of us can use in increasing measure. Like other wisdom skills, it is a quality that improves with time. In other words, the earlier children start practicing and learning discernment, the better!   Discernment is seeing the difference between good and bad – or good and best – so I know what to do to please God.   Discernment is a wisdom skill. Skills by nature are designed for practice. Honing the skill of discernment is a life-long endeavor. One goal of discernment is learn to ask what is good for God, not what is good for you. This is what it means to effectively guard your heart, asking what is good for God, […]

Don’t be hurt, be holy

Parents, when your children sin and they are not respectful to you, how do you want to respond? If you make the matter primarily a personal offense against yourself and respond in anger and frustration, you will do what any ordinary parent might do. You might get angry at them. You might just let your children know how painful this is for you. You might yell. You might walk around in silent pain. You might tell your kids they have gone too far this time. All these responses would be ordinary and totally understandable and totally destructive. In this way you would associate God with the ordinary actions of ordinary people. When you give in to anger, resentment or self-pity […]

Thought for the Lord’s Day

Do you worship because of what you see or what you don’t see?   This may be the most important question that can be asked about worship.    If you worship primarily because of what you see, your worship is much like that of the world around you. It is not distinctive nor is it holy worship.   If you worship because of what you don’t see you are aligned with the type of worship the Bible describes.    Much of the anxiety we face in this world is because our worship is too connected to our   perceived well being in the world that is seen. God says our focus must be on what cannot be seen.    Meditate […]

The sweet promise of the gospel: A President’s prayer for guidance

This prayer by George Washington is one to pray for yourself and to teach to your children.    “O eternal and everlasting God, I presume to present myself this morning before thy Divine majesty, beseeching thee to accept of my humble and hearty thanks, that it hath pleased thy great goodness to keep and preserve me the night past from all the dangers poor mortals are subject to, and has given me sweet and pleasant sleep, whereby I find my body refreshed and comforted for performing the duties of this day, in which I beseech thee to defend me from all perils of body and soul….   Increase my faith in the sweet promises of the gospel; give me repentance […]

God, Prayer, and War

This prayer was made in 1944 by the sitting President of the United States, Franklin Roosevelt.  While the prayer lacks some elements of what most of us would consider a fully biblically balanced prayer should be, it is nonetheless, by today’s standards, outrageously politically incorrect. This prayer provides a great topic for discussion for your family and for your church.   Take a few minutes to read this prayer.  Notice FDR does not speak of many Gods or many faiths or many religions.  He closes with asking that the will of Almighty God be done. Today, we seek protection from a moment of silence offered to a god of our own choosing,    In 1944, the American people welcomed this […]

The news media – out of touch with reality

In our news media the idea that Christianity, or specifically, the God of the Bible, has any impact on current events is seen as a myth.  If you consider the reporting of news events in the same way that the news commentators do (either consciously or unconsciously) you will have a distorted view of reality. You will be lulled into assuming that God is like us, just a spectator to the unfolding of human events. However, it is this flawed assumption that is the real myth. Acts 17:24-27 teaches that God is deeply involved in the events of all of human history, including current events:   24 “The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord […]

Work is not a curse by Paul Tripp

Many people have a distorted view of work.They think that work is a pain; or even more destructive, they think that work is a curse. The thinking goes this way; when Adam and Eve fell, part of their punishment was work. But that is a misunderstanding of the biblical story.  Adam and Eve were not punished with work; their punishment was that their work  would now be hard and toilsome.The fallen state of the world would make their work harder in a way it had never been before.    Adam and Eve were designed for work, and they were commissioned by God to work before sin and death entered the world. As creatures made in God’s image, Adam and Eve […]