Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Friday, January 22, 2010
How Will They Hear Without a Preacher?
Thursday, January 21, 2010
This article is from the Philadelphia Barista Examiner:
Over the past five years, the sale of Fair Trade products has increased almost 40%, and continues to grow as consumers become more concerned with sustainability. The movement's roots can be traced all the way back to the 1940s in North America and Europe with the intention of providing relief to the impoverished communities of the world, but started to make real strides in the late 80s. As world coffee prices started to decline considerably, the first Fair Trade certification initiative was born, opening doors to both the mainstream coffee industry and coffee growers alike.
The United States is the largest consumer of coffee in the world, and Fair Trade Certified coffee is currently the fastest growing segment of the specialty market. It guarantees a living wage to farmers by increasing their income and putting in place tools for self-sufficiency, and also empowers consumers by helping them be part of a social movement that positively impacts the lives of poor farmers throughout of the world. Fair Trade is also beneficial to the environment, because smaller farmers tend to grow organic, shade-grown coffee that protect certain species of wildlife as well as preventing the clear-cutting of large areas. Not only are there notable community and environmental impacts of Fair Trade, but small, artesanal farming methods result in better quality product than high-quantity, cost-cutting practices.
Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Keller deals with those things that are not always seen to be idols by many Christians. He refers to surface idols and “deep idols” of the heart. True to his commitment to expound Scripture, Keller demonstrates the danger of idolatry in Biblical examples, but he always defaults the “only hope that matters,” namely, the gospel of Christ.
Read this book! It may shake up the way you think about idolatry.
(Buy it from Monergism Books)
Monday, January 18, 2010
When love of one’s people becomes an absolute, it turns into racism. When love of equality turns into a supreme thing, it can result in hatred and violence toward anyone who has lived a privileged life. It is the settled tendency of human societies to turn good political causes into counterfeit gods. Ernest Becker wrote that in a society that has lost the reality of God, many people will look to romantic love to give them the fulfillment they once found in religious experience. Nietzsche, however, believed it would be money that would replace God. But there is another candidate to fill this spiritual vacuum. We can look to politics. We can look upon our political leaders as “messiahs,” our political policies as saving doctrines, and turn our political activism into a kind of religion.Tim Keller, Counterfeit Gods, p.98
Saturday, January 16, 2010
Friday, January 15, 2010
Thursday, January 14, 2010
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
If you are interested, you can read about Norris here and here. I cannot vouch for the accuracy of these accounts, but I do know, from my own background, that for many in the fundamentalist camp, nothing is too sensational in the name of evangelism.
I thought of this as I read Phil Johnson’s report on Erwin McManus. Read it here, and make sure that you read the addendum in the box.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Knowing God - J.I. Packer
Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God – J.I. Packer
Desiring God - John Piper
Holiness, Its Hindrances, Its Root and Fruits - J.C. Ryle
The Pursuit of God – A.W. Tozer
Monday, January 11, 2010
Sunday, January 10, 2010
Friday, January 8, 2010
The previous post deals with the promotion of dolphins as "non-human persons." Read the entire post here.
Is there no limit to how far some people will go to find the most bizarre positions? Christianity is phallocentric (is this a real word)? It is "morally unacceptable" to kill or capture dolphins, yet there is no morality allowed in the discussion of abortion. Really? I guess dolphins get rights because they are "non-human persons," but the fetus has no rights because it is a "non-person human."
If this is intellectualism, then there is something to be said for being dumb.
Thursday, January 7, 2010
Wednesday, January 6, 2010
Sunday, January 3, 2010
In the 1500’s, John Foxe wrote his famous Foxe’s Book of Martyrs, a chronicle of the Protestant victims in England, particularly those who perished under the reign of Mary I, also known as “Bloody Mary.” If Foxe’s stories seem distant and surreal, Kabul 24 brings the reality of religious persecution into the 21st century.
Henry O. Arnold and Ben Pearson tell the story of 8 Shelter Now International workers who spent 105 days in captivity in Afghanistan. This international team of western Christian relief workers were arrested by the Taliban who controlled Afghanistan prior to the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the US. The 2 men and 6 women were detained on charges of proselytizing Muslims – a crime in Taliban controlled Afghanistan. During their captivity, they were moved between several prisons, faced interrogation, and lived in constant fear of execution. Only the American incursion into Afghanistan after 9/11 paved the way for their escape and rescue.
Kabul 24 is a compelling book. The story unfolds in such a way that the reader is drawn into the captivity with the SNI workers. Several insights emerge from this account of religious oppression:
- Kabul 24 gives insight into the thinking of Islamic extremists. To those in the West who cherish religious liberty, the Taliban mindset is incomprehensible.
- American Christians have much to be thankful for and very little cause for complaint.
- Religious persecution is a reality in our 21st century world. It is not relegated to the Dark Ages.
- There are still some who are willing to lay all on the line for the sake of the Kingdom.
Every Christian would profit from reading this book. Particularly as hostilities continue in Afghanistan and western Christians continue to minister among Islamic people, it is a challenging to see the price that may be exacted from those who represent Christ.
1. I am responsible for my own progress in holiness.
2. My own sanctification takes priority over ministry to others. 1Tim. 4:16 says that I will not be able to be an instrument of salvation to others if I do not take heed to myself.
3. Being is more important than doing
Therefore, in order to better "take heed" to myself, I have composed these determinations:
- I will say fewer prayers, but pray more.
- I will read the Bible, and allow myself to be read by the Bible.
- I will be less critical of others and more critical of myself
- I will be ruthless in the sin I see in myself; gracious in the sin I see in others.
- I will be ready for the worst and anticipate the best
- I will take the work that God has set before very seriously; I will not take myself seriously.
- I will be a better husband, father, grandfather, and friend; I will be an enemy of the world, the flesh, and the devil.
- I will declare war on pride, arrogance, conceit, and Phariseeism – beginning with my own.
- I will approach the work of God with the same attitude that David had in 2 Sam 24:24. I refuse to offer to the Lord that which costs me nothing.
Friday, January 1, 2010
I know that this is an unsophisticated question, but I must ask it: if evolution is the driving force behind life in this world, then why would we dare to interfere with the process? Isn't survival of the fittest what its all about? Should we not expect some species to become extinct in order to give way for the advancement of others?
Is it just me or is there really an inconsistency between the advancement of evolutionary dogma and the frantic - albeit well-meaning - attempts to prevent the extinction of any species?