Archives for March 2010

it’s not that simple

Dave said (here and here):

Restore the local assembly to the center where God intended it to be. When your local assembly engages in Great Commission work outside its walls, find some folks you agree with and get busy doing it. Unity is built on agreement about the truth, not by politics. Few things are as political as trying to preserve movements once they have fragmented theologically.

Would that it were so simple. But it is not that simple. In the words of John Donne,

No man is an island entire of itself…

And certainly the pastor and church in question is no island, entire unto themselves. If we were talking about a small church in a small community it might be that simple, but … probably not.

Everyone influences someone else. That’s why our private decisions are important. They have influence on someone.

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peddling the word

In a message Wednesday night, the preacher referred to this passage:

NAU  2 Corinthians 2:17 For we are not like many, peddling the word of God, but as from sincerity, but as from God, we speak in Christ in the sight of God.

“Peddling the word” – the KJV puts it ‘corrupt the word’, but the idea is more that of dishonest peddlers who try to swindle their customers.

The NET Bible notes explain the word this way:

The participle … refers to those engaged in retail business, but with the negative connotations of deceptiveness and greed – "to peddle for profit," "to huckster"

We’ve all met with fellows like this before, haven’t we? (If you haven’t yet, you will.)

Our preacher last night illustrated this kind of peddler this way: He’s like a man selling apples. He has some good ones, some so-so ones, and some ‘past due’. How does he display his wares? Does he put the best ones on the bottom of his basket, the so-so ones next and the ‘past due’ ones on the top?

No! Of course not. The best are put on top and the ‘past due’ ones are hidden on the inside.

Then came this application, not quoted exactly verbatim, but close:

“The worst thing about attracting people to church with rock music and then preaching Christ is the place it puts Christ in the basket.”

Think about it.


HT: Jeff Musgrave, our preacher of the evening.

is SG music an entry level drug?

Now, please, first a joke disclaimer. My headline is an attention getting device. It is meant in jest. Mostly. And it points to a serious question.

Scott Aniol has been writing a good deal about this. I especially like his post, “The Sovereign Grace/Getty Music Question

I like Scott’s conclusions:

  1. I have more than enough hymn texts to choose from (both ancient and modern) that are better than Sovereign Grace lyrics and do not carry any of the potential baggage.
  2. I have more than enough hymn tunes to choose from (both ancient and modern) that are better than Sovereign Grace tunes and do not carry any of the potential baggage.
  3. While associations are not a primary factor in my decision, I am at least aware of the potential of causing a weaker brother to stumble into what I consider error (either by being attracted to the Sovereign Grace pop/rock styles or a charismatic theology of worship) if I were to use these songs.
  4. I do not sing any similar songs, so I am consistent with my decisions.

Read Scott’s whole post and you will get the whole argument and see why he makes the conclusions he does.

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Jay Adams on maturing movements

Jay Adams has a post today, How movements ‘mature’.

He is describing a general phenomenon, and he might be describing what is going on in Fundamentalism, but regardless of that, his description certainly applies.


on complexity of creation

An interesting article today on Chronic Myeloid Leukemia, the disease my wife has in remission thanks to Gleevec.

CML in its chronic phase can be treated with Gleevec and most patients respond well to it. But unfortunately, some do not. The disease can progress to what is called ‘blast phase’ where things go from bad to worse in a hurry.

Today’s article has to do with an apparent discovery of the cause for the transition from chronic to blast phase. Here it is:

They found that chronic myeloid leukemia (CML) progresses when immature white blood cells lose a molecule called miR-328.

That’s it. The white blood cells lose ONE MOLECULE. (The disease is initially caused by a mutation resulting from one part of one chromosome breaking off and reattaching itself to the DNA in a different spot on the chain.)

That isn’t much of a big deal to kill you, eh? One chromosome mutates and soon you have a chronic and life threatening disease. Left untreated, after some time, one white blood cell loses ONE molecule (and then many follow), and suddenly you are in blast phase. And shortly after that, if untreated, you are gone from this world.

A couple of observations:

  1. Are their any good mutations? How can anyone believe that chance can produce any beneficial change in any organism that is then perpetuated to new generations? Every part of our body is essential. All it takes to kill you is one chromosome change and one molecule loss. Mutations are not good.
  2. What a mighty God we serve! He designed us, in all our complexity, to live as we do in a complex, interdependent world. His mind conceived it all. Though the struggle with cancer can be daunting and is often tragic, it ought to remind us of how great God is.


P.S., I am working on an article to follow up my ‘godliness’ post a few days ago. It is getting longer and longer as I work. Maybe it should be more than one post. It will definitely become a series in our Bible Study time at our church. I think the idea of godliness (godly living) is vital for Christians in our world. So more is coming… in the meantime I am putting up links to things that interest me…

uh, oh, now we are getting older faster

Apparently the earthquake in Chile may be to blame. According to this post from the JPL, each day may have been shortened by 6.8 microseconds. That means each year will be shortened by 2482 microseconds. (I am not exactly sure what a microsecond is.)

All I know is now I have an excuse for how much older I am feeling.


an outstanding camel

My brother and his wife just retuned from a trip to Israel. One of the things they did on the trip was ride a camel.

The camel they were on stood out from the rest. As soon as it rose to its feet, it lunged forward and tried to take a chunk out of another camel. When they arrived at their destination, all the riders safely disembarked (after the camels lay down to allow it). My brother noted that their camel was treated differently from the rest – after all the riders were off, his camel was made to stand and led away from the rest of the group. Apparently some of the other riders didn’t notice this special treatment, as they came back by the camels for pictures. My brother’s camel decided that two fellows approached too closely for its liking and tried to take a chunk out of them as well. (The fellows were also preachers…)

So, what does this tell you?

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2.28.10 gbcvic sermons

Our Sunday morning service sees us begin the next section of Romans:

The Connection between Sin and Death (Rm 5:12)

In the Bible study session, we conclude our recent study:

The Christian and Sin (3)

And in the afternoon service we take a look at what is a controversial subject (but really shouldn’t be!):

God Desires All to be Saved (1 Tim 2:3-4)


Not sure what happened to our Psalm from last week. I’ll update this once I find it.