Daily Archives: August 29, 2013

Music Video: Forgiven – Sanctus Real

Well, the past is playing with my head
And failure knocks me down again
I’m reminded of the wrong that I have said and done
And that devil just won’t let me forget

And in this life I know what I’ve been
But here in Your arms I know what I am
You are forgiven, yeah, I’m forgiven
And I don’t have to carry the weight of who I’ve been
‘Cause I’m forgiven

My mistakes are running through my mind
And I’ll relive my days in the middle of the night
When I struggle with my pain, wrestle with my pride
Sometimes I feel alone and I cry

And in this life I know what I’ve been
But here in Your arms I know what I am
You are forgiven, yeah, I’m forgiven
And I don’t have to carry the weight of who I’ve been
‘Cause I’m forgiven

When I don’t fit in and I don’t feel like I belong anywhere
When I don’t measure up to much in this life
Oh, I’m a treasure in the arms of Christ

‘Cause I’m forgiven, I’m forgiven
And I don’t have to carry the weight of who I’ve been
‘Cause I’m forgiven

Vile Politicians are a Curse from God

Zwinglius Redivivus

calvin87We need not labour to prove that an impious king is a mark of the Lord’s anger, since I presume no one will deny it, and that this is not less true of a king than of a robber who plunders your goods, an adulterer who defiles your bed, and an assassin who aims at your life, since all such calamities are classed by Scripture among the curses of God.– John Calvin

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American Media Ignore Syria Crisis, Possible WWIII, to Cover Miley Cyrus’ VMA Controversy, Analysis Finds

Miley Cyrus’ viral and controversial MTV VMA performance may distract Americans from noticing the critical situation in Syria that could suck the United States into another war, noted media experts looking at search engine analytics.

Read More Here: http://www.christianpost.com/news/american-media-ignore-syria-crisis-possible-wwiii-to-cover-miley-cyrus-vma-controversy-analysis-finds-103306/

Immoral Illegality: The Obama Whitehouse and Tyranny

Zwinglius Redivivus

The United States would provide its own legal justification for an eventual response to chemical weapons use in Syria if necessary once President Barack Obama decides how to proceed, the White House said on Thursday. “When the president reaches a determination about the appropriate response … and a legal justification is required to substantiate or to back up that decision, we’ll produce one on our own,” White House spokesman Josh Earnest told a briefing. (Reuters)

That’s immoral, illegal and typical of the Obama Whitehouse.  How shameful.  How utterly, despicably, insanely shameful.  What the Whitehouse is doing is making up legal justification for doing whatever it likes.  That’s what tyrants do.  I’m so ashamed of this President.  And equally ashamed of anyone who defends this immoral behavior.

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Podcast: I’m interviewed about the moral complexities of a U.S. strike on Syria & how we should pray.

Joel C. Rosenberg's Blog






(Washington, D.C.) — We’ve just posted the latest podcast on my website, at www.joelrosenberg.com. It’s a 19 minute interview I did yesterday on a nationally syndicated radio program.

During the program, I discussed the following questions:

  • are the U.S, British and French about to launch military strikes against the Assad regime in Syria?
  • before any strikes occur, is it important to wait for the U.S. report detailing credible evidence of chemical weapons attacks in Syria, and the Assad regime’s responsibility therein?
  • will Syria and/or Iran fire missiles at Israel, and what precautions are the Israelis are taking?
  • who are the good guys and who are the bad guys in the Syrian conflict?
  • what are the moral complexities of getting involved in this fight?
  • if the U.S. does use military force in Syria, does “regime change” have to be the objective, or could something less sweeping be done?
  • how Christians should pray at…

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What to Say when You Stop Attending Church

stop attending church<img alt=”stop attending church” src=”http://cdn.tillhecomes.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/stop-attending-church-300×400.jpg” width=”300″ height=”400″ />Are you one of the millions of people who have stopped “attending church” so that you can better follow Jesus into the world?

If so, you have probably noticed two things: First, you have rediscovered joy and excitement in your relationship with God and your life with Jesus. Each new day brings an expectation for what God will teach you that day, where Jesus will take you, and how you can show the love of God to people you interact with that day.

The second thing you have probably noticed, however, is that once you stopped attending church to start following Jesus outside the four walls of the church building, many of your church-attending friends and family think that you have abandoned Christ, have rejected the faith, and are falling away from God. Many do not understand how anyone can follow Jesus without attending church on Sunday morning.

Read More Here: http://www.tillhecomes.org/stop-attending-church/

Pastor’s Letter of Love To Miley Cyrus: ‘My Heart Breaks For You, Your Future, And Your Identity As A Woman’

A Memphis, Tenn., pastor’s open letter of love to Miley Cyrus about her racy performance at the 2013 MTV Video Music Awards show on Sunday night, in which he expresses disappointment with her behavior but encourages her to reject pressure to be something she is not, has gone viral.

Read More Here: http://www.christianpost.com/news/pastors-letter-of-love-to-miley-cyrus-my-heart-breaks-for-you-your-future-and-your-identity-as-a-woman-103302/

Christians in the Middle East Aren’t Aided by Our Bombs

Zwinglius Redivivus

Archbishop Cranmer writes in his conclusion to a sage essay on the West’s intervention in Middle Eastern politics:

The more we ‘intervene’, the more Christians are marginalised. In Syria, they are happier living under the the Shia Alawite dictatorship of President Bashar al-Assad than under those we call the ‘rebels’ or ‘opposition forces’, who are, in fact, disparate groups of Al Qaeda-affiliated, Wahhabi-Islamist jihadists.

There used to be 80,000 Christians in Homs. The last one was murdered almost a year ago. Only five months ago in Benghazi, Libya, 60 Christians were rounded up by extremist vigilantes. Some were tortured; one was murdered. The media didn’t stream the horrors live into our living rooms: HM Government ‘stood by’ and ‘did nothing’.

We liberated Iraq for Christians to be cleansed. We bombed Libya for Christians to be persecuted. We ‘stand by’ and watch a military coup in Egypt for Christians to…

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What Do You Say to a Woman Filled with Hate from Past Sexual Assault Or Abuse?

BCC Staff Note: You’re reading Part Two in a three-part BCC Grace & Truth blog mini-series on Biblical Counseling and Sexual Abuse/Assault. You can read Part One by Justin Holcomb, What Does the Bible Say about Sexual Assault? Part Three will be by Bob Kellemen on Beauty for Ashes.

Ministering to Phyllis

Suppose we had the opportunity to counsel a precious woman named Phyllis who had been wickedly abused by her father as a child and is now filled with hate toward him for the years of abuse she suffered at his hands. What are some things we might want to say to Phyllis?

Read More Here: http://biblicalcounselingcoalition.org/blogs/2013/08/29/what-do-you-say-to-a-woman-filled-with-hate-from-past-sexual-assault-or-abuse/

Question 34-Puritan Catechism

Reformedontheweb's Blog

Spurgeon 1Q. What is sanctification?

A. Sanctification is the work of God’s Spirit, (2 Thessalonians 2:13) whereby we are renewed in the whole man after the image of God, (Ephesians 4:24) and are enabled more and more to die to sin, and live to righteousness. (Romans 6:11)

Charles Haddon Spurgeon-A Puritan Catechism

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Can Women Exercise Authority in the Church? – by John MacArthur

1 Timothy 2:11–12            Code: B130829

In our discussion of male leadership in the church, we walked phrase by phrase through the text of 1 Timothy 2:8-15. We will do the same as we discuss God’s design for women. The biblical model is highly controversial in today’s culture. But if Christians are to reflect God’s nature, they must live by His wisdom rather than the world’s.

In 1 Timothy 2, Paul addresses women in the Ephesian assembly who wanted to take over teaching roles. He wrote, “A woman must quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness. But I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet” (1 Timothy 2:11–12). Paul here defines women as learners during the worship service. They are not to be teachers in that context, but neither are they to be shut out of the learning process.

While it may seem obvious to us that women should be taught God’s Word, that was not true for those (like some at Ephesus, cf. 1 Timothy 1:7) who came from a Jewish background. First-century Judaism did not esteem women. Although they were not barred from attending synagogue, neither were they encouraged to learn. Most ancient religions—and even some religions today—perceive women as unworthy of participating in religious life. Unfortunately, that historical treatment of women continues to incite modern feminism.

The traditional treatment of women in Ephesus partially explains why some of them in the church overreacted to their suppression by seeking a dominant position. Paul rebukes them for that. Before he does, however, he affirms their right to learn.

In 1 Timothy 2:11 Paul qualifies the way in which women are to be learners: They are to “quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness.” “Submissiveness” translates hupotagē, the noun form of hupotassō, which means “to line up under.” In the context of the worship service, then, women are to be quiet and be subject to the church leadership.

Some have tried to evade the plain meaning of the text by arguing that “quietly” refers to a woman’s meek and quiet spirit. Women, they contend, can preach or teach as long as they do it with the proper attitude. Others go to the opposite extreme and use this text to prohibit women from ever talking in church under any circumstance—even to the person she is sitting next to! Neither of those options is valid, however. The context makes the meaning of “quietly” quite clear.

In verse 12, Paul defines what he meant: “I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man.” Women are to keep quiet in the sense of not teaching, and they are to demonstrate submission by not usurping authority.

The Greek word translated “allow,” epitrepō, is always used in the New Testament to speak of permitting people to do what they want. Paul’s choice of words implies that some women in Ephesus desired to teach and have authority. In today’s church, as in Ephesus, some women are dissatisfied with their God-given roles. They want prominent positions, including opportunities to exercise authority over men. There is only one biblical way to handle those situations for the good of everyone concerned, and that is to do what Paul did. He directly forbade women from taking the authoritative pastor-teacher roles in the church.

Paul also forbids women from exercising “authority over a man.” The Greek word translated “exercise authority over,” authentein, appears only here in the New Testament. Some have attempted to evade the force of Paul’s prohibition by arguing that authentein refers to abusive or destructive authority. Women, according to this view, can both teach and exercise authority over men so long as it is not abusive or destructive. [1](Aida Besancon Spencer, Beyond the Curse [Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1989], 87-88) Others claim it carries the idea of “author” or “originator,” thus Paul is actually saying, “I do not allow a woman to teach or proclaim herself author of man.” [2](R.C. Kroeger and C.C. Kroeger, I Suffer Not a Woman [Grand Rapids: Baker, 1992], 192)

In a study of the extrabiblical uses of authentein, however, Dr. George Knight concludes that the common meaning is “to have authority over.” [3](The Pastoral Epistles: A Commentary on the Greek Text [Grand Rapids, MA: Eerdmans, 1992], 141-42) Paul, then, forbids women from exercising any type of authority over men in the church, including teaching.

These instructions to Timothy echo what Paul earlier commanded the Corinthians: “As in all the churches of the saints, women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the Law says . . . it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in church” (1 Corinthians 14:33–35, NIV). Many claim Paul was addressing a cultural issue in Corinth—nothing that ought to concern our contemporary culture. But they fail to let the text speak for itself: “As in all the congregations of the saints, women should remain silent in the churches” (vv. 33–34, NIV). That isn’t a cultural issue; it is God’s standard for all churches.

The context implies that the silence Paul commands is not intended to preclude women from speaking at all but to prevent them from speaking in tongues and preaching in the church. As in Ephesus, certain women in Corinth were seeking prominent positions in the church, particularly by abusing the gifts of speaking in tongues and prophesying. Yet these women, who joined in the chaotic self-expression Paul had been condemning, should not have been speaking at all. In God’s order for the church, women should “subject themselves, just as the Law also says” (v. 34).

Women may be highly gifted teachers and leaders, but those gifts are not to be exercised over men in the context of the church. That is true not because women are spiritually inferior to men but because God’s law commands it. He has ordained order in His creation—an order that reflects His own nature and therefore should be reflected in His church. Anyone ignoring or rejecting God’s order, then, weakens the church and dishonors Him.

Next time, we’ll look at what a woman’s submission looks like in action.


(Adapted from Divine Design. All Scripture quotations are from the New American Standard Bible, unless otherwise indicated.)

Available online at: http://www.gty.org/resources/Blog/B130829     COPYRIGHT ©2013 Grace to You

A Sober Warning

Jesus teaching crowdJesus was an amazing teacher: “Never has a man spoken the way this Man speaks” (John 7:46). His words always came with power and conviction and the mesmerizing ability to say so much, so clearly, and with such an economy of words (I have a lot to learn from this)! With a small child in arms, He has just taught a room of 12 proud disciples (1 an unbeliever) the sine qua non of Kingdom life: Humility (Matt. 18:1-4). Not simply humility as a virtue, but kingdom humility that marks spiritual life. Humility that has a conscious sense of the glory of God and seeks all grace, all life, all mercy, all joy, and all things from Him in Christ. The humility that trusts, the humility that obeys, and the humility that serves. You would think that’d be enough for one day. It wasn’t. Jesus has more to say. The lesson needs to go deeper, so He adds a gracious, yet sober, warning. Namely, that fellowship in the kingdom should reflect God’s own love for His children and His jealousy for our holiness. Yes, God has a jealous love for His “little ones” (Matt. 18:6) and so should we.

Read More Here: http://thecripplegate.com/a-sober-warning/

A Charismatic Primer Part 1- The New Apostolic Reformation

Watch Your Life and Doctrine Closely...

Seeing that we’re basically seven weeks out from the Strange Fire Conference, I’m going to start posting portions of the large study project that I’ve been hinting at on Twitter and Facebook; this isn’t a Bible Bite or a Quick Thought; this is the fruit of a lot of study and is a resource for my readers that will take some slugging to get through (if you follow the links, read the hundreds of pages of linked articles and watch the hours of linked videos).  Consider yourself warned.

The Charismatic/Continuationist influences and flagship churches/ministries are as numerous as they are diverse.  On the spectrum of positive to negative influence, arguably the biggest and most dangerous influence on the Charismatic movement is the movement known as the New Apostolic Reformation.  I’m sure many have heard about it here and there, or heard about some of the components of it, but…

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Fed Judge Declares Anti-Gay Sermon a “Crime Against Humanity”

A federal judge ruled that a biblically based denunciation of homosexuality was a “crime against humanity.”

In his decision in the case of Sexual Minorities Uganda (SMUG) v. Lively, U.S. District Court Judge Michael Ponsor held that Scott Lively, an evangelical pastor, was “aiding and abetting a crime against humanity” when Lively spoke in Uganda and in America against homosexual behavior.

Read More Here: http://thenewamerican.com/culture/faith-and-morals/item/16415-fed-judge-declares-anti-gay-sermon-a-crime-against-humanity

Finishing Well

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

3 Εὐλογητὸς ὁ θεὸς καὶ πατὴρ τοῦ κυρίου ἡμῶν Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ ὁ κατὰ τὸ πολὺ αὐτοῦ ἔλεος ἀναγεννήσας ἡμᾶς εἰς ἐλπίδα ζῶσαν δι’ ἀναστάσεως Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ ἐκ νεκρῶν, 4 εἰς κληρονομίαν ἄφθαρτον καὶ ἀμίαντον καὶ ἀμάραντον τετηρημένην ἐν οὐρανοῖς εἰς ὑμᾶς 5 τοὺς ἐν δυνάμει θεοῦ φρουρουμένους διὰ πίστεως εἰς σωτηρίαν ἑτοίμην ἀποκαλυφθῆναι ἐν καιρῷ ἐσχάτῳ 6 ἐν ᾧ ἀγαλλιᾶσθε ὀλίγον ἄρτι, εἰ δέον ἐστίν, λυπηθέντας ἐν ποικίλοις πειρασμοῖς, 7 ἵνα τὸ δοκίμιον ὑμῶν τῆς πίστεως πολυτιμότερον χρυσίου τοῦ ἀπολλυμένου, διὰ πυρὸς δὲ δοκιμαζομένου εὑρεθῇ εἰς ἔπαινον καὶ δόξαν καὶ τιμὴν ἐν ἀποκαλύψει Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ (1 Peter 1:3-7 NA28)

3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the one according to his great mercy has regenerated us to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to an imperishable inheritance that is undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, 5 who…

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John MacArthur Affirming Dallas Willard & Spiritual Disciplines? All Right, Let’s Just Take a Breath….

A recent article by Lighthouse Trails blog (John MacArthur Broadcast Favorably Quotes Dallas Willard – Why This is a Bad Move) noted that a sermon by John MacArthur of Grace To You had rather favorably quoted Dallas Willard. For those who don’t know who that is, before his recent death Willard became one of the founders of the Spiritual Formation/Spiritual Disciplines/Contemplative Prayer movement which is widely taught today in churches and seminaries, but which includes teachings from Roman Catholic monastic mystics. As noted, this movement has profoundly influenced evangelicalism and is widely taught in seminaries, but it is not based on sound, biblical teaching but rather veers dangerously into outright mysticism. The Spiritual Formation/Contemplative Prayer movement has also paved the way for rampant ecumenicalism amongst our ranks, and even a growing push to accept Roman Catholics as Christian brothers and sisters, rather than lost souls to be evangelized. (Presumably this reasoning goes something like this: If all those Roman Catholic mystics cited and taught from in the Spiritual Formation movement are okay, then today’s Catholics must be our brothers and sisters.)

So let’s go over the facts, and see if we can make sense of Dr. MacArthur quoting from Dallas Willard.

Read More Here: http://www.solasisters.com/2013/08/john-macarthur-affirming-dallas-willard.html

Cultivating Meaningful Relationships in Small Groups

Small groups. Growth groups. Mini-churches. Community groups. Cell groups. Accountability groups. Home groups. Missional communities. Mini-flocks. No matter what you call them, most churches of any size highlight the importance of meeting together in smaller communities within the local church.

Read More Here: http://www.ccef.org/video/cultivating-meaningful-relationships-small-groups

Questions about Creation: What Was the Leviathan?

There are several references to “leviathan” in the Old Testament, but their meaning is sometimes poetic and often obscure. In one instance, the Hebrew word for “leviathan” is used as a synonym for earthly kings and princes, possibly Pharaoh (Isaiah 27:1), and in another instance, it is translated “mourning” (Job 3:8). The verses that actually refer to leviathan as a creature don’t provide enough information to make a determination one way or the other regarding what type of creature leviathan is. Some commentators believe leviathan is a crocodile because of the references to its scales (Job 41:15) and its use as a food source (Psalm 74:14). Some commentators believe that leviathan is a large sea reptile (not a whale), possibly even a species of dinosaur.

The fact that leviathan is a creature is beyond doubt and, as such, it is under God’s sovereign control. God uses the leviathan’s strength and power to illustrate to Job his weakness and frailty. God asks Job to consider how powerless he is against even the sea creatures God has created and to understand his position in the universe. God points out to Job that he could never pull the leviathan out of the water with a hook, which would seem to indicate that leviathan could be a whale. Whatever its nature, leviathan is large and powerful enough to be subject only to the sovereign control of the Lord.

Leviathan was a real creature, unlike some of the mythological representations of great sea creatures that do battle with the gods. Leviathan is no myth, but rather a creature of the sea, whether a fish, a sea dragon, a mammal such as a whale, or a reptile such as a crocodile. It is also possible that the leviathan, whatever it was, is now extinct.[1]


[1] Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

Questions about the Holy Spirit: What Are the Spiritual Gifts of the ‘Word of Wisdom’ and the ‘Word of Knowledge’?

There are three spiritual gifts lists in Scripture (Romans 12:6–8; 1 Corinthians 12:4–11; and 1 Corinthians 12:28), but only one of them mentions the gifts referred to as the word of wisdom and the word of knowledge (1 Corinthians 12:8). There is much confusion as to just exactly what these two gifts are. Perhaps the best way to approach it is to describe what these gifts are not.

Some Charismatics/Pentecostals view the word of knowledge and word of wisdom spiritual gifts as the Holy Spirit speaking from one believer to another, giving revelation regarding a decision or situation. Those who use these gifts in that way will often say something to the effect of, “I have a word from the Lord for you.” In doing so, they claim to be speaking on behalf of God, and claim that their words are to be strictly obeyed.

This understanding of the word of knowledge and word of wisdom gifts comes dangerously close to denying the doctrine of the sufficiency of Scripture. If God continues to reveal His will and wisdom through special revelation to individuals, then can His Word truly be sufficient to make us “complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16–17)? Has God truly given us everything we need for life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3), if we require other individuals to give us special revelation from God? This is not to say that God never uses another person to speak to us, but if we often need direct messages from God through other people in order to live our lives, is God’s Word truly sufficient, as it declares itself to be?

So, if the word of wisdom and the word of knowledge are not prophetic/revelatory gifts, just exactly what are they? We know one thing for sure: these gifts are given by the Spirit to build up (edify) the body of Christ, for the “common good” (1 Corinthians 12:7). The havoc that so often ensues in churches that practice the word of knowledge and word of wisdom as revelatory gifts clearly is not for the common good. Confusing, nebulous, and sometimes contradictory “words from the Lord” do not come from the God, who is not a God of confusion or disorder (1 Corinthians 14:33). Nor do they tend to bring Christians together for their edification; on the contrary, they tend to cause division and strife in the body. Often the word of knowledge and/or word of wisdom gifts are used to gain power and influence over other people, to make others dependent on the one who claims to possess those gifts. This misuse of the two gifts is clearly not of God.

With that in mind, we offer these definitions of the word of knowledge and word of wisdom spiritual gifts:

The word of wisdom—The fact that this gift is described as the “word” of wisdom indicates that it is one of the speaking gifts. This gift describes someone who can understand and speak forth biblical truth in such a way as to skillfully apply it to life situations with all discernment.

The word of knowledge—Also a speaking gift that involves understanding truth with an insight that only comes by revelation from God. Those with the gift of knowledge understand the deep things of God and the mysteries of His Word.[1]

[1] Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.