Monthly Archives: January 2011
But I did adopt a pseudo-diet as a pseudo-resolution for 2011. (Confused yet? I prefer to call it a lifestyle change.)
I decided to eat meat at only one meal a day.
Why I Made the Change
I will turn 30 this summer. Up until now, I haven’t had to worry much about my weight or my health. Friends tell me that once you get into your thirties (particularly your late thirties), your body begins to turn on you, causing you to be more conscious about exercise, food, etc.
I’m not a health nut, but I do want to be a good steward of the body God has given me. God has put longevity in my genes (I knew four of my great-grandparents, all of whom died in their late 90’s – aside from one: she was 102). God could take my life tomorrow if He wishes, but as much as it depends upon me, I hope to live a long and healthy life to serve King Jesus and enjoy the people I love.
That’s why reducing my meat intake has been a good change for me. Here are four reasons why:
1. Eating Meat Once a Day Leads Me to Healthier Eating
If I’m on the go during my lunch hour, I am less likely to pick up a fast food burger. Why? Because that means I would miss the good food my wife is preparing for dinner.
In addition, foregoing meat has caused me to eat …
When I became a Christian at age 20, I began to understand that my mind really matters. (Beforehand, I didn’t engage in my studies and did just enough in school to get by.) It was then that I realized the importance of cultivating a well-informed, logical mind as well as building a coherent and defensible Christian worldview. Now as an adjunct professor at Biola University, I hope to encourage my students to come to that same realization. I offer my list of 100 academic commandments to help show students (and their parents) how to take full advantage of their school years and beyond.
If Lincoln saved the Union, she saved him, and for that alone she’s entitled to a decent respect. Measured by the usual yardsticks of wealth and distinction, her own life may not have made much of a dent in the historical record. But at just the right moment, she encountered a small motherless boy, and helped him to become Abraham Lincoln.
The best church ad I’ve ever seen: “Before we tell you who we are, we want to tell you who we were.” We are those foolish ones, those weak ones, those low and despised ones. Watch the video below.
I lay my sins on Jesus, the spotless Lamb of God;
He bears them all, and frees us from the accursèd load;
I bring my guilt to Jesus, to wash my crimson stains
White in His blood most precious, till not a stain remains.
I lay my wants on Jesus; all fullness dwells in Him;
He heals all my diseases, He doth my soul redeem:
I lay my griefs on Jesus, my burdens and my cares;
He from them all releases, He all my sorrows shares.
I rest my soul on Jesus, this weary soul of mine;
His right hand me embraces, I on His breast recline.
I love the Name of Jesus, Immanuel, Christ, the Lord;
Like fragrance on the breezes His Name abroad is poured.
I long to be like Jesus, strong, loving, lowly, mild;
I long to be like Jesus, the Father’s holy Child:
I long to be with Jesus, amid the heavenly throng,
To sing with saints His praises, to learn the angels’ song.
– Horatius Bonar
It doesn’t get much funnier than this bit of classic television. It’s amazing that this scene is done in one take, and even more amazing that sixty years later, people still talk about it. If you’ve never seen Vitameatavegamin before, you can thank me later.
Seven links for your weekend reading:
1. Read these articles back to back: CT - “Heresy is Heresy, Not the Litmus Test of Gospel Preaching” and TGC “The Radical Gospel – Defiant and Free”, then Tullian “Two Ways to Realize Radical Obedience”
2. Ed Stetzer on issues church planters face. Darrin Patrick quoted on why churches stay small.
6. D.A. Carson reviews the book, Four Views on Moving Beyond the Bible to Theology
Many people go into a movie theater and are barely conscious of the music that provides the atmosphere to the movie they are watching. I can’t do that. My ears are always tuned in to the melodies coming from those mega-speakers.
If I enjoy a movie’s music, I sometimes download the score. Occasionally, I download scores to movies I haven’t even seen, simply because I enjoy the music from a specific composer.
There are not many movie scores that I can listen to straight through. Suspenseful movies often have music that matches the action, which means it’s a little much to have music playing softly in the background that sounds like a car chase or a shoot-out. There are, however, certain tracks in the scores from action movies that I enjoy.
Below, I’ve listed ten of my favorite movie scores. (Please note: I am not endorsing these movies, only recommending the music!) Some of these CDs have tracks that I rarely listen to (for the reasons listed above), so I am putting in parentheses the best tracks from each one. If you click over to the Amazon page, you can listen to some of the samples and download a few mp3s.
1. Forrest Gump (best tracks: “Suite from Forrest Gump,” “I’m Forrest… Forrest Gump”, “You’re No Different”)
2. Life Is Beautiful (La Vita E Bella) (best tracks: “Buon Giorno Principessa”, “La Vita e Bella,” “Abbiamo Vinto”)
3. The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe (best tracks: “Evacuating London,” “The …
A good quote from G.K. Chesterton on obsession with trends (this, after I posted earlier this week on future trends in evangelicalism!):
When Chesterton spoke of those sociologists who spoke of the great need we have to accommodate ourselves to the trend of time, he noted that, in any given time, the trend of the time at its best consists of those who will not accommodate themselves to anything. Athanasius had to stand contra mundum, and it is he who is the representative man from that era, and not the whole world he had to contend against.
While 78 percent have a website, less than half of those congregations use their sites for interactive purposes like obtaining and distributing prayer requests (43 percent), registering people for events and activities (39 percent) and automating more church processes (30 percent).
Brent Prentice on the benefits of preaching through the Bible:
I acknowledge that preaching through the Bible is not the only way to preach… Whatever each pastor’s unique style or angle is, he must be faithful to the meaning of the Spirit-inspired text. I just happen to believe strongly that preaching through the Bible, not around it, is the best way.
There’s really no explanation for failing to cover an event of this magnitude, except bias:
None of the broadcast news programs from Monday evening and Tuesday morning covered the 2011 “March for Life” in Washington, DC, a pro-life rally that reportedly drew at least tens of …
It’s ironic that the central practice that unites the church across two millennia has often caused major division between Christians. Start talking about the Lord’s Supper and you’re confronted by a host (pun intended) of questions:
How frequently should we partake of the Lord’s Supper?
Is this a sacrament or an ordinance?
How is Christ present in the elements? Is he present at all?
What does it mean to partake of the Supper in an unworthy manner?
Who can join us at the table?
Each of these questions (and many more) are covered in a recent book edited by Thomas Schreiner and Matt Crawford. The Lord’s Supper: Remembering and Proclaiming Christ Until He Comes (B&H, 2011) is part of the NAC Studies in Bible and Theology. A number of Baptist scholars have contributed essays that deal with particular questions about the Lord’s Supper. The result is a solid resource for pastors and church leaders (from all denominations) who want to go deeper in their understanding of the Supper’s significance.
Below is a brief overview of the essays in the book, followed by some considerations and some areas I think the book could have been stronger.
The book begins with biblical exposition of New Testament passages that describe the Last Supper or the early church’s practice of the Supper.
Andreas Kostenberger makes a convincing case for viewing the Lord’s Supper as a Passover meal.
Jonathan Pennington outlines the way the Gospels treat the Supper, both the common and distinctive elements that emerge.
James Hamilton exegetes a …
Darrin Patrick responds graciously to John MacArthur’s critique of Church Planter:
When I misunderstand or am misunderstood, I want to quickly ask, “What is God teaching me?” And, He is teaching me through Dr. MacArthur’s critique. For that, I am very thankful! For those of you who have been quick to be critical of Dr. MacArthur, please remember that we all need to be corrected from time to time. Also, ALL of us who are younger need to give a careful listen to the concerns of seasoned pastors, many of whom have forgotten more than we might ever know.
Good point about Obama’s use of “private family matters” to mask the hidden horror of abortion:
Since when is lethal violence used on the defenseless and the most vulnerable members of our society considered an intrusion on “private family matters”? This line of argument is absurd. Would the president argue that our laws should be silent on matters of spousal and child abuse? After all, based on the Obama Criterion, those, too, might qualify as “private family matters.”
Michael Kelley: Today’s Gospel is Tomorrow’s Law
- When Christians believe that public school is the only appropriate way to be missional with your family.
– When Christians say that home schooling is the only good and proper way to educate your child.
– When the mark of your spirituality becomes whether or not you have adopted a child (or how many).
– When those believers who feel the liberty to consume alcohol turn up their …
Yesterday, my friend Jared Wilson wrote on the need for churches and Christians to focus not just on changing laws regarding abortion, but also to focus on changing hearts. I agree with Jared that we need a both/and approach, not an either/or (a point he makes explicitly).
I do worry, however, that some people might hear Jared’s point as saying something to the effect: “It’s more important to change hearts; therefore, let’s not busy ourselves with seeking to enact legislation.” Within the cultural climate I mentioned yesterday (where young evangelicals are less inclined to seek cultural change through the political process), I fear that we may be backing away from seeking legislative victories when they are right within our grasp.
Not long ago, I saw a clip from The View in which the hosts were discussing a new Oklahoma law that requires women to see an ultrasound before choosing abortion. Elisabeth Hasselback defended the law, but then acted as if it were misguided to seek this sort of abortion legislation. She said something like: “Change a law or change a heart? I’d rather change a heart.”
Put me on record saying, I’d like to change both. The moment we dichotomize changing laws and changing hearts is the moment we postpone the day abortion is illegal.
So, even though I agree that changing laws doesn’t ultimately solve the problem (yes, yes, yes – on all of Jared’s points), I want to make sure that we do …