Saturday, May 29, 2010
Thursday, May 27, 2010
How to Understand and Apply the Old Testament
1. Grasp the text in their town. What did the text mean to the biblical audience?
2. Measure the width of the river to cross. What are the differences between the biblical audience and us?
3. Cross the principilizing bridge. What is the theological principle of this text?
4. Cross into the New Testament. Does the New Testament teaching modify or qualify this principle, and if so, how?
5. Grasp the text in our town. How should individual Christians apply the theological principle in their lives?
Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Living in a Postsecular Culture
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Interracial Marriage and Same-Sex Marriage - Why the analogy fails
for a helpful Summary, click here
(H/T Stand to Reason)
Friday, May 21, 2010
Why Won't God Heal Amputees?
"“Why won’t God heal amputees?” The question caught me by surprise.
I had just finished my “Why I Am a Christian” talk at Calvary Chapel Chino Valley’s youth conference in April. After talking with a few students and leaders, a young man approached. He challenged me with this question, explaining his atheist friend had asked it earlier in the week. And he had no answer for his friend.
Apparently, it’s a question atheists make a big deal about. There is even an entire website dedicated to it (www.whywontgodhealamputees.com). The website claims “this is one of the most important questions we can ask about God.” Sometime, somewhere I had heard the objection but had never given it much attention. Now it was staring me right in the face. Immediate attention was required.
I proceeded in usual fashion—by asking clarifying questions. “What conclusion does your atheist friend draw from this question?” I inquired. He responded, “Well, if God doesn’t heal amputees when we pray for them, then He doesn’t exist.” I followed with a few more questions, gathering the gist of the atheist’s argument.
The atheist claims that alleged healings, like the disappearance of a cancerous tumor or diagnosed disease, seem to be ambiguous. Did God supernaturally heal the person or is modern medicine responsible? Both causes could be offered and both could be disputed. But according to the atheist, if an amputee grew back a missing limb after intercessory prayer was offered on his behalf, this would be a clear case of the miraculous and thus proof for God’s existence. On the other hand, no new limb means no God. A fail-proof test, right? Wrong.
First, I pointed out this atheist’s argument is guilty of...(more)
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
Worldview, Aliens, and Hope?
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
How Do I Grow in My Relationship With God? Is Holiness Really Possible?
click here to listen
I hope you find it helpful!
For more, see Revolution of Character by Dallas Willard
Monday, May 17, 2010
Why Sam Harris' Morality Experiment Fails
Sunday, May 16, 2010
Spiritual Formation and Overcoming Pornography by Dallas Willard
"The use of pornography is rooted in the fundamental role of desire in human life. Desire, on the biblical understanding, is not in itself bad, but it is dangerous because it has the tendency to take over one’s life. Desire must be subordinated to what is good, and it is the role of the will to see to it that it is subordinated to what is good. But the will can do this only if it understands what is good and is strongly oriented toward it. This is definitely not the case with those unaligned with God. In them the will falls captive to desire: they live to do what they want. Their condition is repeatedly addressed in the scriptures.
The general condition of fallen humanity is carefully laid out by Paul in Ephesians 4:17-19 and Romans 7:15-23. The will is, in the fallen personality, enslaved by desire, and so "I am doing the very thing I hate." (vs. 15) This is a precise picture of the person in some degree of bondage to pornography.
We really must pay attention to desire ("lust," "longing," επιθυμία) if we are to understand spiritual formation. The primary role of desire in human life is to impel us to action. If action were solely under the direction of thought, we would never survive infancy, and life would be an intolerable burden in which much that is good would not be realized. Lusting itself gives pleasure, because it thrusts us in a direction and makes us feel alive. We are "moved," hence we speak of "passion." Thus we get pleasure from desiring itself, and desire to desire. The gratification of desire gives us a sense of completeness and power—for a moment or so. A depressed person is typically one who has little or no desire and "doesn’t want anything."
Thus we do many things just to excite desire." (MORE)
"Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord; seeing that His divine power has granted to us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence. For by these He has granted to us His precious and magnificent promises, so that by them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world by lust."-- 2 Peter 1:3-4
Friday, May 14, 2010
Think Christianly Celebrates 500 Posts!
"…our lives are often fractured and fragmented, with our faith firmly locked into the private realm of the church and family, where it rarely has a chance to inform our life and work in the public realm. The aura of worship dissipates after Sunday, and we unconsciously absorb secular attitudes the rest of the week. We inhabit two separate “worlds,” navigating a sharp divide between our religious life and ordinary life."
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
Bart Ehrman and the New Testament Text--is he Right?
Isolation is Very Unwise
Monday, May 10, 2010
The Bible, the Old Testament Law, and the Christian
Sunday, May 9, 2010
Should I Set Moral Boundaries?
“Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a man commits are outside his body, but he who sins sexually sins against his own body.”—1 Cor. 6:18
"We all would do anything (even extreme things) to undo bad choices we have made morally. So why not be extreme now in our personal standards and boundaries so that we don’t have to face those painful consequences?"- Andy Stanley
What are my boundaries in dating? With my conversations and relationships with the opposite sex (if married / if single)? With what and when I watch TV and use the Internet?
Remember....Someone will set your standards if you don’t.
Saturday, May 8, 2010
Science and the Rationality of the Universe
Thursday, May 6, 2010
What is Truth?
Here is a helpful article on the nature of truth by Philosopher Doug Groothuis:
"Everyone on the side of truth listens to me." Jesus Christ made this statement after Pontius Pilate had interrogated him prior to the crucifixion (John 18:37, NIV). Pilate then famously replied, "What is truth?" and left the scene.
As philosopher Francis Bacon wrote in his essay "On Truth":
"What is truth?" said jesting Pilate; and would not stay for an answer.
Although Jesus made no reply to Pilate, Christians affirm that Pilate was staring truth in the face, for Jesus had earlier said to his disciple Thomas, "I am the way and the truth and the life" (John 14:6).
This historic exchange raises the perennial question of the very nature of truth itself. What does it mean for a statement to be true? Or, to put it another way: What does it take for a statement to achieve truthfulness? (more)
Wednesday, May 5, 2010
To Know and Love God
"The study of theology is considered by many to be dry, boring, irrelevant, and complicated. But for those who want to know God, the study of theology is indispensable. The word “theology” comes from two Greek words, theos (“God”) and logos (“word”). The study of theology is an effort to make definitive statements about God and his implications in an accurate, coherent, relevant way, based on God's self-revelations. Doctrine equips people to fulfill their primary purpose, which is to glorify and delight in God through a deep personal knowledge of him. Meaningful relationship with God is dependent on correct knowledge of him.
Any theological system that distinguishes between “rational propositions about God” and “a personal relationship with God” fails to see this necessary connection between love and knowledge. The capacity to love, enjoy, and tell others about a person is increased by greater knowledge of that person. Love and knowledge go hand in hand. Good lovers are students of the beloved. Knowledge of God is the goal of theology."--Erik Thoenness
Monday, May 3, 2010
The Gulf of Mexico and the Care of Creation by Russell Moore
"As I type this, I am looking out at the Gulf of Mexico. You could have seen a similar sight out the window of the hospital where I was born, just a few miles down the road here on the Gulf Coast of Mississippi. Now, though, those waters I grew up with, gently lapping against the sand, are threatening to bring with them millions of gallons of oil, spewing up from an exploded rig out in the Gulf. Five years after Hurricane Katrina leveled this hometown of mine, it is bracing for the worst environmental disaster in the history of the United States.
Sunday, May 2, 2010
Every Opportunity is Unique
“Conduct yourselves with wisdom toward outsiders, making the most of the opportunity. Let your speech always be with grace, as though seasoned with salt, so that you will know how you should respond to each person.”—Col. 4:5-6