November 2013

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'I realised that these were insects painted onto the wings...'

A few weeks ago, a tweeted photo of a particular fruit fly caused quite a buzz among biologists and even meandered its way into the New York Times. Of course everyone is tripping over themselves to avoid any acknowledgment of God's beauty and design, but sometimes even scientists can't help themselves...

Come one! Come all!

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Every December Clearnote Church sets aside a special evening of worship and fellowship called the Clearnote Christmas Spectacular. It's a night for pulling out all the stops in celebration of the Incarnation of our Lord, where centuries old traditions intersect with contemporary style. This year we've come up with a few surprises that will make the night truly spectacular!

Here's a little taste...

Supreme Court accepts Hobby Lobby appeal...

The Supreme Court has accepted an appeal of the requirement by President Obama's nationalized medicine that corporations pay for the murder of unborn children. The appeal filed by Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties, a Mennonite woodworking company, is based on the companies' religious opposition to providing their employees abortifacient drugs such as "Plan B."

So now we'll see if Chief Justice Roberts has "grown" into lying about the First as well as the Tenth Amendment. Also whether he sees baby-slaughter as no big deal.

Reporting on SCOTUS agreeing to the review, USA Today...

Nathan and Anna's story...

Here's the testimony of a young mother of two who was diagnosed with melanoma a little over two years ago. Please pray for Anne, her husband, Nathan, and their two sons.

Take the time and watch this...

Wonderful testimony to our Lord Jesus Christ. Wonderful example of fatherhood after the Father Almighty, a mother in Israel, and brotherhood in Christ. Thanks, Taylor.

Sermon notes: Galatians Series, Number 8...

So, ask yourself—or rather, ask the Holy Spirit—what possible benefit you might receive from His use of the family relationship of "brothers" as His form of address of groups of Christians, many of whom not only did not share the same blood relationship, but also did not share the same ethnic or racial background? What might this teach you?

Well, for both men and women, it teaches us that we are a part of a new family—and one, not of our own choosing, but of the Holy Spirit’s election. No longer is our identity to be taken from our own cultural heritage, but rather from the call of God to the Church of Jesus Christ, within which we are all fathers, mothers, brothers, and sisters of one another. What a tender designation to comfort the hearts of those who have grown up in homes permeated by strife, families abandoned by mothers and fathers who cared more about their own pleasure than the wellbeing of their offspring.

God has called us to Himself and, by that call, made us members of His Own Household, the Church. And within the Church, we are not Jew and Greek, slave and free, male and female, but we are all one in Christ—brothers of God’s household.

NOTE: This is number 8 in a series on Galatians. If this is your first time reading sermon notes here, please take time to read a helpful explanation at the bottom of this post.

From the Pulpit of Church of the Good Shepherd

December 28, 2003; AM
Galatians Series No. 8
For I Would Have You Know, Brethren
Sermon Text: Galatians 1:11-24

This Lord’s Day, we turn to our eighth in a series of sermons on the New Testament book of Galatians...

Your arrival is your departure...

As a missionary kid from sub-Saharan Africa, I found this post from Pastor Conrad Mbewe to be quite a howler. Welcome to the real Africa!

F.F. Bruce: A conservative liberal or a liberal conservative?

A Review of Tim Grass, F.F. Bruce: A Life (2011). 

Evangelical historians have chronicled “the Evangelical resurgence in Biblical Studies” during the twentieth century, and in that history F.F. Bruce played a central role. Several of the really good things from that “resurgence,” as well as some of the not-so-good things, go back to him. This biography speaks to these issues, but gently; probably too gently because, after all, who wants to violate the rules of collegiality and criticize a fellow scholar who is so congenial?

Bruce wrote a “sort of” autobiography in 1980 entitled, In Retrospect: Remembrance of Things Past. Unfortunately, it’s not a very personal book and this new biography tells me that others had the same complaint. Yet in that work, Bruce tells us he has always found it difficult to write or speak publicly about the things ...

Pastors and elders working together in harmony...

(Posted in 2004 in a similar form) A friend writes requesting feedback regarding the following statement:

The New Testament is clear that an elder is not to run a one-man show in a local church setting. There is to be a plurality of elders present (numbers will vary with the size of a church), who exercise their God-given authority in a group capacity, not an individual one. Therefore, when we speak of submitting to church leaders, what we have in mind is submission to the authority that elders possess in their group capacity.

Does an elder have any authority as an individual apart from the session? (emphases original)

Usually, discussions of this sort come out of a particular context, and in power struggles, context is everything. So I think asking others their opinion concerning this statement is not likely to be helpful without particular knowledge of the situation from which this question arises.

However, one elder (whether teaching or ruling) does have the authority of his office and that authority is not simply where the other elders agree beforehand with the specifics of his exercise of authority...

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So long, SiteMeter...

It's been a good ride, but earlier today Joseph removed Baylyblog's SiteMeter code. Recently, Joseph and Lucas noted SiteMeter had started placing videos in the bottom right corner of Baylyblog pages. They were going to charge us $90 to get rid of them, so...

Sweet dreams, Mommy...

So to all those who don't know the word 'jaded,' this just sent to one mother by one of her daughters who is now a mother of four herself. It was accompanied by this note: "It's very sweet and well-done, just short peeks into the lives of 3 mothers. I read the comments of women saying it helped them not to feel so conflicted and guilty about staying home with their kids. They made me want to write and say thank you. I'm so glad that you were at home with us, Mom. ...And I'm thankful that, because of the way you raised me, I have the ability to do my work without nagging questions or guilt about what else I should be doing. I love you!"

The following excerpt is from Chesterton's "The Emancipation of Domesticity" in his splendid, What's Wrong with the World. This is an essay I believe every father should read aloud to his daughters after they've had their third child. (My dear Mary Lee says the third is the most difficult because it's the first time husband and wife are outnumbered.)

Honestly, I have no desire to speak with the husband or father who can't understand and doesn't love this essay no matter how fast he can say sovereignty/providential/imputation three times in a row. True Christian faith proves itself by its fruit which, according to Scripture, always starts at home. And what greater fruit does any man give to God than his manly support of the motherhood of his wife and their flat-out commitment to everything needed to raise up godly seed?

Mothers are the greatest!

So now, this dose of ...

Making a mockery of the presidency and freedom...

The LORD of hosts has planned it, to defile the pride of all beauty, To despise all the honored of the earth. - Isaiah 23:9

Yesterday, President Obama couldn't find the time to accept the invitation to help commemorate the 150th anniversary of President Lincoln's Gettysburg Address over in Gettysburg, a couple minutes flight from the White House.

Yet look at what he found time for today: awarding the Presidential Medal of Freedom to President Bill Clinton, Oprah Winfrey, and Gloria Steinem (pics here).

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