19 July 2013

This 'n' That

photo: Ben McLeod via photopin cc 
There is a verse in Scripture that must be ever-present at the forefront of the Christian's mind, especially as he engages nonbelievers. That verse is 1 Corinthians 2:14:
But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised.
There are times when you may be conversing with the unsaved that you feel as though you are slamming your head against the proverbial brick wall. Whether they are determined to oppose the entire concept of an all-knowing, all-powerful deity, or whether they are laboring under the notion that they simply must be "good enough" in their daily life in order to attain to Heaven, there are times when the Christian may find himself fighting the urge to grab the person by the shoulders and exclaim, "Why don't you get it?"

Admittedly, I've yet to see someone actually take such action, but there is no doubt that it can be frustrating to try to explain the things of God to men who simply do not have eyes to see or ears to hear. This, dear Christian, is an opportunity for us to exercise grace, patience and gentleness. As we remember the verse above, we are reminded that these individuals do not accept our words because they "cannot understand them." This ought to bring great relief to you, Christian, for it means that you can rest in your labors while our sovereign God does the inner work of softening—or hardening—the hearts of men. If we are faithful to share the truth that we have been given, if we are faithful to call sinners to repentance as we share with them the gospel of grace as found in Jesus Christ, then we may rest knowing that God will use our words as He chooses. We do not have to feel as though we are slamming our foreheads into that brick wall, because only the Spirit of God can penetrate such a barricade.

With that, take a few minutes to enjoy your week in review (kind of):
  • Okay, now this is a prank that's funny in every language.
  • I wonder who runs the IHOP Twitter feed? And after reading this tweet, I wonder what that person is smoking. . .
  • The Queen of England has approved a same-sex "marriage" bill.
  • Sin makes smart people stupid.
  • Could this be the result of moralistic deism? There are a number of extremely sad things contained in this article.
  • Here are some of the ugliest churches in the world. Don't miss the captions.
  • Um, wait, the TSA is doing what?
  • Okay, we've discussed ligers and liligers here before, so it only seems fitting that I share this slideshow of other crazy animal hybrids.
  • The Cripplegate shares some thoughts from Thabiti Anyabwile on the myth of race.
  • Monergism has a ton of free ebooks available!
  • Here's your weekly dose of adorable (isn't our Creator amazing?).
  • This woman is completely physically health, but she desires to live like someone who is handicapped. She even is searching for a doctor who is willing to sever her spinal cord. Crazy? Absolutely. Crazier than people who supposedly are "transgendered"? Nope.
  • I'm a sucker for a heartwarming military homecoming.
  • Find yourself saying that you're a "Christ-follower" or a "follower of Jesus" while avoiding the term Christian? Perhaps you should read this by Kevin DeYoung.
  • I wish every pastor who has ever erroneously preached the mandatory tithe would listen to this sermon by Pastor Don Green: 

4 comments:

  1. Erin, as to your opening words...let us in humility remember what the Lord has rescued us from. He brought us out of darkness, out of bondage to sin, from error to truth, from spiritual blindness to spiritual understanding. From spiritual death to spiritual life - life everlasting!

    I think the church has by and large forgotten the doctrine of the depravity of man. The world of course has so elevated mankind that they think they are just around the corner from godhood if they have not already reached it. Even the church tends to think that the unregenerate person just needs cleaning up, he just needs to be educated, he just needs to hear the truth and then he will shout, eureka! No, not according to scripture. According to scripture those who are apart from Christ are dead, spiritually dead. They cannot respond this way, in fact they live in darkness and so when we come and shine the light in their eyes they are doubly blinded! they cannot see the light of the glory of God in the face of Christ, unless God opens their eyes. We can see the light, but let us never, never, never forget that it was not our doing but God's. It was His mercy and His grace and His love, according to the kind intention of His will, not according to our works, or because we somehow deserved it. Far from it! It was only because of His inscrutable will that He chose us and brought out of darkness and into the light. We in the church desperately need to understand the doctrine of depravity. Otherwise we continually are frustrated and maybe even angry by the unsaved person. And we forget as time goes by, just what we Christians have been rescued from. We may even become lax in our witnessing. A profitable study is to go through the Bible and list out what you learn about the unsaved person, the unregenerate. Here are a few passages to get you started, but there are plenty more: Romans 1:18-32; Ephesians chapters 2,4, and 5; Colossians; 1&2 Thessalonians; Matt 15:18-19; John 3; John 15

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  2. Good stuff again, Erin. Would love to read a post in the future commenting on Rachel Slick's article. I know you are busy, though. I Know there are two sides to a story, and I did email CARM to see if there would be a response from Matt, but it sounds like Rachel got a lot of Theology and Doctrine talking points and no Gospel. Sad.

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  3. ROLOF !!!
    Reading this "I wonder who runs the IHOP Twitter feed?" I was bewildered !? Why would you take the time to follow the tweets of the International House of PANCAKES !!!
    Just imagine how I felt when I discovered my mistake...
    Thanks for this great mix of things that come handy to spend an always interesting weekend !

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  4. Just listened to Don Green's sermon on giving. Thank you for posting this. Sure is different from the vision casting, campaign driving, elephant ridin', mansion dwelling, curse threatening sermons on giving I heard from my FORMER megachurch megapastor.

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