Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward. - Psalm 127:3
Not every baby at Clearnote Church, Bloomington gets his pic broadcast to the world within minutes of his birth. It's largely a function of whether or not my dear wife, Mary Lee, is present and sends me a pic. Which she did just now of our latest addition to the known and seen children of the church: here is Abraham Knox Menzel, son of Pastor Jacob (Jake) and Amanda Menzel. Mother and son are doing well--for which we give thanks to God.
(NOTE FROM TB: When I first published this post, I was remiss in not thanking Kamilla for pointing me to Kathy Keller's piece. Quite a few of our sources come from Kamilla and I am delighted to publicly acknowledge her for her faithful work that's been so helpful to us for years, now. Thank you, Kamilla! Here is some of Kamilla's good work opposing Rachel Held Evan's very public hissy fits, but everything Kamilla writes is worth reading.)
* * *
Mrs. Tim (Kathy) Keller just did a post on the heretic Ms. Rachel Held Evans that her husband's friends put up on their web site. It's never good to provide a wider forum to a heretic, but if someone was going to give Held Evans more media coverage than she's already arranged for herself by her public fainting spells, I suppose Mrs. Keller is as good a person to look to as anyone else.
And her review is good. Read it. Now that you've read it, though, here are a couple things worth pointing out about Mrs. Keller's own words and arguments.
Mrs. Tim Keller writes:
...recording the relentlessly sinful behavior of his people (in the Old Testament) was God’s way of demonstrating how desperately in need of a savior they really were.
One commenter points out that in this review Mrs. Keller is employing faddish redemptive-historical techniques. So then, look at the above quote and ask yourself where this leaves us with redemptive-historical preaching? If the good things done in Old Testament narratives are not to be taken as lessons of spiritual virtues of men like David when he slays Goliath, what gives us permission to take the bad things done by David when he commits adultery and murders the adulteress's husband as a lesson of moral turpitude?
In other words, moralism is moralism whether pointing to the bad or the good. If the bad is to be read as pointing the reader toward how hopelessly lustful and bloodthirsty David is because of his faithlessness, and how he needs a Savior; why are we not allowed to read the good as pointing the reader toward how wonderfully courageous David is because of His faithfulness, because he has a Savior?
Most years we've made it a habit to read some (and one or two years, all) of the 95 Theses that were posted on the door of the Castle Church of Wittenberg by Martin Luther. Read them to your family or church today, five years before the theses 500th anniversary. The ones in italics were read during our sermon this morning.
* * *
Disputation on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences (Commonly Known as the 95 Theses)
by Dr. Martin Luther
Posted October 31, 1517 on the Door of the Castle Church of Wittenberg
Out of love and concern for the truth, and with the object of eliciting it, the following heads will be the subject of a public discussion at Wittenberg under the presidency of the reverend father, Martin Luther, Augustinian, Master of Arts and Sacred Theology, and duly appointed Lecturer on these subjects in that place. He requests that whoever cannot be present personally to debate the matter orally will do so in absence in writing.
When our Lord and Master, Jesus Christ, said “Repent”, He called for the entire life of believers to be one of penitence.
(Note from Tim Bayly: This is the first in a series of articles written by Craig French for Christ the Word's newsletter. At my request, Craig is allowing the series to run here on Baylyblog. Thank you, Craig, for your faithful work in our behalf.)
Many Christians find it difficult to apply the doctrine of the Trinity. Truth be told, even the most orthodox Christians stumble trying to articulate how this teaching is relevant; yet early on in the Church, godly men died to preserve this doctrine.
How have we gone from dying for truth about God to scratching our heads about its importance? Probably too long of a story with rabbit trails every three feet causing us to become distracted. The short story, I’m convinced, is that we are very Trinitarian...we just don’t realize it. That’s not something I came up with...
Since the earlier Baylyblog post on Lance Armstrong, the sky has been falling on the man and we don't yet seem to be near the end of the obluquy pouring down on him. Here's an excellent article on doping in sports and Armstrong's disgrace. The article ends...
Just now, I have disabled threading on comments. Threaded comments seem to work on some sites, but we have found them to be very difficult to follow here on Baylyblog. So, after discussion with Tim, we have turned them off. All comments will now be posted in order time submitted, with the comments submitted the earliest at the top.
I have also disabled the ability to add a comment title. There is, obviously, some loss of information as a result, but we're convinced it will improve comments overall.
Comments are central to the work done here on the Baylyblog, and our writers consider comments very carefully. If you haven't already, please take some time to look over the rules about comments. A link to the rules about comments appears above each comment box on this site.
We have some more changes coming down the pike for the Baylyblog, so stay tuned. It just so happens that we have been busy at work on another project recently...
Publishers Weeklyannounces self-publishing is up up up, and that's good good good--particularly for the Church. Remember how the printing press helped the Reformation? Rome couldn't block the direct pipeline the Reformers now had to expose the wickedness in high places, warning the sheep.
The same is true of the digital publishing revolution of the past three decades, starting with Macs and laser printers. Wheaton and Grand Rapids and Covenant and Redeemer can't block the direct pipeline reformers now have to the sheep.
The Lord said to him, “Who has made man’s mouth? Or who makes him mute or deaf, or seeing or blind? Is it not I, the Lord?" (Exodus 4:11)
Richard Mourdock is the Republican candidate for senator here in Indiana. Last night during a debate he testified to his faith and today the priests of Secularism are baying bloodhounds on his trail. His crime? Mourdock spoke of his conviction that babies conceived in rape are a gift from God and should not be murdered:
I just struggled with it myself for a long time but I came to realize: Life is that gift from God that I think even if life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen.
Ho-hum right? Is there any Christian alive who believes a little child is not a gift from God? What wickedness consumes a man to the point that he considers a baby in the womb to be an enemy that must be killed, and that anyone who defends that baby by calling him or her a gift from God must be locked up in the stocks down on the town square and pelted with rotten tomatos, spit on, and otherwise publicly abused?
Some years ago, the counter-culture hero who wrote One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest and Sometimes a Great Notion, Ken Kesey, was being interviewed by Paul Krassner, editor of The REALIST (the successor publication to Stewart Brand's Last Whole Earth Catalog). During the interview, Krassner raised the subject of abortion and got more than he was prepared for:
KRASSNER: And yet, since you're against abortion, doesn't that put you in the position of saying that a girl or a woman must hear an unwanted child as punishment for ignorance or carelessness?
KESEY: In as I feel abortions to be probably the worst worm in the revolutionary philosophy, a worm bound in time to suck the righteousness and life from the work we are engaged in, I want to take this slowly and carefully...
My brother-in-law, Mark Taylor, has done a good op-ed piece for World explaining why his Christian conscience led Tyndale House Publishers to file suit against President Obama's unconstitutional nationalized health care. In conjunction with the oped, World's syndicated radio commentary, "The World and Everything In It," provided a forum for Mark to explain the confirmation he received from God's Word the day after the suit was filed.
Attorneys associated with the Alliance Defending Freedom (formerly Alliance Defense Fund) are representing Tyndale House in the matter. I commend their work to readers and ask each of you to pray that the Lord will have mercy on us to the end that our First and almost-completely-decimated Tenth Amendment rights will be vindicated by judges and justices who fear God, and therefore keep their vows to submit to the Constitution of these United States.
Obamacare is tyranny against individual Christian consciences as well as the fifty states of these United States. Judges and justices who find it constitutional should be impeached.
It's good to see Mark's piece is one of the most popular on WorldMag.com just now.