22 March 2013

This 'n' That

One might think that a man's dinner menu isn't exactly newsworthy. That is, unless you're the pope. Apparently if you wear a big, sparkly hat and allow millions of people to call you Holy Father, then what you put into your mouth is worthy of a news write-up by Religion News Service:
Baked skinless chicken, salad, fruit and a glass of simple wine hardly seems like food fit for a king. But it does seem to be a meal fit for a pope.

Pope Francis is becoming well known for his simple tastes: As Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio, he carried his own bags when traveling, preferred public transportation to chauffeur-driven limousines, and, the stories go, cooks meals for himself.

His humble lifestyle extends to the kitchen, a stark contrast with his predecessor, Benedict XVI, who before becoming pope relished feasting on fettuccine with shrimp, zucchini and saffron.
photo credit: amanky via photopin cc
Look, we get it. We're supposed to revere Pope Francis not just because he's miraculously been granted powers of infallibility, but because he's 'humble.' Never mind the fact that the very office of pope is an ostentatious one. Let's face it, humble popes don't exist.

And if we're going to judge a man's humility by his menu, well, then us bloggers ought to be some of the most humble men and women of them all. Sure, Pope Francis used to live in a little apartment, take the bus, and eats skinless chicken and salad. But us bloggers live in our mother's basements, spend our days in a beanbag chair, and maintain a steady diet of Cheetos and Mountain Dew. I mean, if we want to have a humility contest, who do you really think is going to win? The guy in the robes with a massive silver cross around his neck, or the sweatpants-wearing blogger?

Well, it's about time for me to go prepare a humble lunch, so while I do that, please go ahead and enjoy your week in review (kind of):
  • The Cripplegate has had a few really good articles about Roman Catholicism, the papacy, etc. In this one, Steve Meister talks about alleviating the protestant inferiority complex. He also rightly observes, "Since the Pope misrepresents the evangel, the gospel, I fail to grasp how he could ever excite evangelicals."
  • I've heard a lot of Christians praising the television show Duck Dynasty. I've never watched it myself, but those who do may want to examine just what kind of a gospel the Duck Dynasty family proclaims.
  • The Mormons have once again changed their scriptures, specifically updating references to blacks and to polygamy. Kinda makes you extra thankful to know that the true and living Word of God never changes, doesn't it?
  • I've always said 'Earth Hour' — those 60 minutes every year where everyone is supposed to sit in the dark and not use any electricity — was utterly ridiculous. (In fact, I usually celebrate by turning on as many lights and electrical appliances as possible). Turns out it's not just ridiculous, it's downright backwards.
  • Only Carl Trueman could write a blog post entitled, "The Yuck Factor" and still have it be taken seriously (as it should be).
  • Former 'pastor' Jack Schaap has been sentenced to 12 years in prison for his relationship with a minor.
  • The University of Tennessee has withdrawn some of the funds from its upcoming 'Sex Week' event. Organizers only have a few days to find over $11,000. Good, I hope it gets canceled.
  • Back to 'The Bible' miniseries: there's a little—no, a hugesomething missing in the scene of the Last Supper.
  • Never make a Gospel appeal to people's emotions:


  1. LOL humble blogger!!

  2. I love the fearlessness of John MacArthur. Mike Abendroth (I probably didn't spell that correctly) seems to be made of the same stuff. We need more preachers with backbone. Thanks for making these videos available and keep up the great blogging!
    (but do stay humble)

    1. "We need more preachers with backbone."

      Amen to that! We can be so thankful for men like John MacArthur and Mike Abendroth (yes, you did it spell it correctly, Anonymous!) and others like them who are faithful to preach the Word without compromise, and who aren't afraid to proclaim that Word in season and out of season. It's a shame that more pulpits aren't filled by preachers who hold the same convictions. Let's be praying that God would raise up more preachers with backbone!

  3. Humble pope must be as idiosyncratic as bible believing and bible studying Roman Catholic priest...

    ~ Despeville

  4. "Heads up: the Holy Spirit and the Shekinah glory are scheduled to be in Houston from 28–31 March."

    Oh really? I thought Jesus compared the Holy Spirit like the wind. The Holy Spirit compared to the wind does and goes wherever HE pleases. It's not like someone has some kind of date they can set for the Holy Spirit and he has to show up and be obligated to our meetings.

    "The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it it with everyone born of the Spirit" John 3:8

    And if the Shekiniah Glory of God showed up we'd probably be all toast.We couldn't bear it. It'd be brighter than the sun.

    These people are full of baloney

  5. Wretched TV has a good word on the humble pope, and clocking in at only 1:30 it packs a punch in a short time

    I enjoyed the list as always EBenz. Great job. My hands down favorite was the photos of children and toys. It was extremely moving

  6. On the "Houston Shekinah Outpouring"... One of the speakers' bios includes:
    She has shared the stage in ministry with Benny Hinn, Sid Roth, and many others. Her ministry is powerful.
    Oooh, I wouldn't hold those creds up too high. Yikes. And all the talk of an Impartation Service - run!

    1. (I agree with you Carl C. Any time man exalts himself-(As these people do) we can KNOW God's not going to be there.

    2. Oooh, I wouldn't hold those creds up too high. Yikes. And all the talk of an Impartation Service - run!

      Sadly, the people who will be deceived by this event would highly esteem credentials like this!

  7. This "humble pope" garbage ought to put red flags by the hundreds up before our face. "Oh, isn't he wonderful! A man of the people! Why, look, he gets out of his car and walks among the people! He carries his own luggage! He is soooooo humble! What a man of God."

    One of the most deceitful and insidious tactics used by the wicked one is to present himself as meek, mild, easy-going, no temper/anger, 'just one of the guys' type, nothing controversial, 'it's all good' kind of man. Then, after your guard is down [cause this guy wouldn't hurt a flea] the hammer falls. The apostasy and heresy are uncovered, the true wickedness of the man is revealed [the pope is a jesuit, that should be enough to know about him] and his real agenda comes to light. The same could be said of Rick Warren, Mark Driscoll, John Piper and other 'big name' preachers who should long ago been shown the door and not allowed to spread any more of their lies. The same is said about THE Antichrist in Daniel. He will be everybody's friend for three and a half years, he will solve the world's problems, bring 'peace' to the world, and on and on and on.

    Let the pope have his day, it will NEVER get any better for him-hell awaits. The ones that fawn over him do so because they want to do so, but God will save those catholics He has chosen. Acts 13:48

    1. Exactly Darrel. Man looks at the outer appearance but God looks at the heart. Reminds me of what John MacArthur said once speaking of False Teachers:

      "They are all spiritual phonies and frauds. Jesus called them what they are. They try to bring attention to themselves not to Jesus. They use people for their own self will. They desire status and respectful greetings and titles of dignity. Mat.chp.23 they love particular titles Rabbi" meaning exalted teacher, Excellency, most knowledgeable one most wise they were at the top. They wanted to be called Father --- the "source" of spiritual truth, life father re-generator, pro-creator. They wanted to be called Leader. False teachers are never humble. They wear the "phi-sod of humility".

    2. @Darrel,

      Indeed and many Argentinians who suffered from the hands of fascist junta in 70s will never go for this new PR spin of Rome about " a wonderful humble pope". Never. They know better. They know that Bergoglio aka "pope" is a ruthless power-monger play soft and polite to the public while crushing his enemies behind the curtain which is very typical strategy for Jesuits who destroyed Christian Faith in many countries which are now monopolized by Romanism like Poland of Lithuania or Hungary. Beware of this "humble pope" for he is going to go after Christian Church. He already has...

      ~ Despeville

    3. John Piper? Really? I thought he was one of the good guys. What is wrong with him? (not arguing, just curious)

    4. Piper was once (and for some still is) an evangelical Golden Boy. People waited in great anticipation to hear what new thing would fall from his lips and then be the first with the OOOOs and ahhhhs at what great wisdom could come from a mere man. Don't know much of his early years, since I was saved in Oct, '04, but these past several years has seen him go off the deep end with his rendition of "christian hedonism" (basically the Christian life is all about us being happy, with little or no mention of our old life and man being crucified with Christ). As if that were not enough, he soon after jumped on Doug Wilson's band wagon telling his followers of the joys of Federal Vision. I used to think FV was a new 'salvation by works' gimmick, but after a web search of FV found it to be far, far worse. Lately he has gone into New Age mysticism and advocates trying to hear the audible voice of God, with any such communication being superior to the written Word of God.

      Oops, almost forgot his glowing endorsement of the (un)protestant pope, Rick Warren. It's likely there is more, but this has been enough for me to ignore Piper every chance I get.

    5. I don't think you are being very fair to Piper's teachings on Christian Hedonism, since it is not just about 'being happy' but about pursuing joy/happiness in God, in whom the fullness of joy dwells. Serving God and having joy are not diametrically opposed. I don't see how that contradicts Galatians 1 since he has never suggested that Christians seek happiness through the pleasures of their flesh or to seek it apart from God. Also, I truly don't understand why Piper is now considered to be someone who can't be trusted, I have not agreed with all the decisions he has made, but should I write him off because he has not done everything perfectly?

    6. Darrel,

      I have to agree with Crystal here, in that you've unfairly assessed Piper's 'Christian hedonism'. It is much more specific than just being happy; even Piper himself would deny this simplistic, unqualified definition. Now you may disagree with his emphasis in this area, but would need a lot more substance to say the concept itself is patently false or un-Biblical.

      ...these past several years has seen him go off the deep end with his rendition of "christian hedonism" (basically the Christian life is all about us being happy, with little or no mention of our old life and man being crucified with Christ).
      This is preposterous. Anyone familiar with his stuff knows that this isn't even partially true. In both his pulpit ministry and writing, he regularly speaks (and has spoken) of these truths as part of the Gospel implications and Christian living.

      Look, I respect Dr. Piper for many reasons, and at the same time strongly disagree with him in a number of areas, to the point of thinking he's in error and to be cautious how I commend him (if at all). But there's no basis for lumping this emphasis of his in with the rest of the problems you mentioned.

      [Erin, apologies in advance for taking this comment thread away from anywhere your post was headed!]

    7. "But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill it's lusts." Rom. 13:14
      The few (one ot two) times I heard JP speak on CH he was telling his audience the opposite of what this verse teaches. So opposite was it that it could be said that it was OK to have desires of the flesh, 'cause God wanted to fulfill them for your pleasure. Search his web site, you'll find it.

      Since you chose not to address the FV & mysticism parts are we to assume that these are OK, too?

    8. Why would you assume that? I said I disagree with many areas of his teaching/practice. But yes, I refuse to make this thread a point-by-point critique of Dr. Piper's issues. (If you wish do to so, maybe you can blog about it.) I think my main point was fairly clear: to avoid misunderstanding in the area of Christian hedonism which I think you misrepresented.

    9. Darrel is correct about John Piper

      Crystal Hill said-"I don't see how that contradicts Galatians 1 since he has never suggested that Christians seek happiness through the pleasures of their flesh or to seek it apart from God"

      Crystal you don't "see it apart from God"?? Yes Piper does teach we are to seek happiness apart from God and he emphasizes our experiences -->>"Christian Hedonism" teaches the overwhelming importance of relying on achieving emotional experience as the only true form of authentic worship.


      "Christian Hedonism", as taught by Dr. John Piper, contains many errors, including the following:

      -- Salvation (eternal life) is dependent on becoming a "Christian Hedonist"

      "Unless a man be born again into a Christian Hedonist he cannot see the Kingdom of God" - page 55, Desiring God, John Piper

      -- True worship is only possible when the thinking mind is disengaged -- emptied

      "We are transported (perhaps only for seconds) above the reasoning work of the mind and we experience feeling without reference to logical or practical implications. This is what keeps worship from being 'in vain'. Worship is authentic when affections for God arise in the heart as an end in themselves."- Chapter 3, Desiring God, John Piper""-end quote

      quotes from the article-Christian Hedonism-a letter written by a lady concerning her daughter:

      a couple of articles to read about John Piper and Christian Hedonism::

      Rebuttal to John Piper's defense of the term "Christian hedonism"

      Second Rebuttal to John Piper's rebuttal of his defense of the term "Christian hedonism"

      John Piper – Giving “license for immorality” while claiming he is not?

    10. Carl C.-

      My friend, you fail to realize that this issue is *not* about John Piper but what the Word of God says. If you assert that Darrel has misrepresented John Piper, then please by all means provide support and back up your assertions with the word of God. But please don't engage in a convo just to unceremoniously truncate him and then foist on him that the real problem is Darrel pointing out this heresy. Heresy is false and in this case with "Christian hedonism", it insults our Lord and robs the Church the bride of Christ. If anyone teaches something that is clearly contrary to the whole counsel of Scripture, he is to be corrected. If you think that this is a "waste of time" then that is unfortunate for you.

      Darrel pointing this out was being "a good minister of Christ Jesus"-1 Timothy 4:6

      Sincerely in Christ, Linda

  8. Just so you know, I am quite am quite sure most men skip the "Here's your weekly dose of adorable." and if you can prove otherwise, I do not want to know...and if you know me, you'll know how to take this...

    1. You mean your curiosity never causes you to click that link, Mike? Come on, you can admit it. We're all friends here. :)

    2. LOL....and for some of us, the "weekly dose of adorable" is the FIRST link we look at. :-)

      A sweet reminder of "Thy Kingdom Come" in a fallen world. Isaiah 11:5-7 Carol


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