Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
What are your New Year's Resolutions?
Remember to read over these Resolutions once a week.
1. Resolved, that I will do whatsoever I think to be most to God' s glory, and my own good, profit and pleasure, in the whole of my duration, without any consideration of the time, whether now, or never so many myriads of ages hence. Resolved to do whatever I think to be my duty and most for the good and advantage of mankind in general. Resolved to do this, whatever difficulties I meet with, how many soever, and how great soever.
2. Resolved, to be continually endeavoring to find out some new contrivance and invention to promote the aforementioned things.
3. Resolved, if ever I shall fall and grow dull, so as to neglect to keep any part of these Resolutions, to repent of all I can remember, when I come to myself again.
4. Resolved, never to do any manner of thing, whether in soul or body, less or more, but what tends to the glory of God; nor be, nor suffer it, if I can avoid it.
5. Resolved, never to lose one moment of time; but improve it the most profitable way I possibly can.
6. Resolved, to live with all my might, while I do live.
7. Resolved, never to do anything, which I should be afraid to do, if it were the last hour of my life.
8. Resolved, to act, in all respects, both speaking and doing, as if nobody had been so vile as I, and as if I had committed the same sins, or had the same infirmities or failings as others; and that I will let the knowledge of their failings promote nothing but shame in myself, and prove only an occasion of my confessing my own sins and misery to God. July 30.
9. Resolved, to think much on all occasions of my own dying, and of the common circumstances which attend death.
10. Resolved, when I feel pain, to think of the pains of martyrdom, and of hell.
11. Resolved, when I think of any theorem in divinity to be solved, immediately to do what I can towards solving it, if circumstances do not hinder.
12. Resolved, if I take delight in it as a gratification of pride, or vanity, or on any such account, immediately to throw it by.
13. Resolved, to be endeavoring to find out fit objects of charity and liberality.
14. Resolved, never to do any thing out of revenge.
15. Resolved, never to suffer the least motions of anger towards irrational beings.
16. Resolved, never to speak evil of anyone, so that it shall tend to his dishonor, more or less, upon no account except for some real good.
17. Resolved, that I will live so, as I shall wish I had done when I come to die.
18. Resolved, to live so, at all times, as I think is best in my devout frames, and when I have clearest notions of things of the gospel, and another world.
19. Resolved, never to do any thing, which I should be afraid to do, if I expected it would not be above an hour, before I should hear the last trump.
20. Resolved, to maintain the strictest temperance, in eating and drinking.
21. Resolved, never to do any thing, which if I should see in another, I should count a just occasion to despise him for, or to think any way the more meanly of him. (Resolutions 1 through 21 written in one setting in New Haven in 1722)
22. Resolved, to endeavor to obtain for myself as much happiness, in the other world, as I possibly can, with all the power, might, vigor, and vehemence, yea violence, I am capable of, or can bring myself to exert, in any way that can be thought of.
23. Resolved, frequently to take some deliberate action, which seems most unlikely to be done, for the glory of God, and trace it back to the original intention, designs and ends of it; and if I find it not to be for God' s glory, to repute it as a breach of the 4th Resolution.
24. Resolved, whenever I do any conspicuously evil action, to trace it back, till I come to the original cause; and then, both carefully endeavor to do so no more, and to fight and pray with all my might against the original of it.
25. Resolved, to examine carefully, and constantly, what that one thing in me is, which causes me in the least to doubt of the love of God; and to direct all my forces against it.
26. Resolved, to cast away such things, as I find do abate my assurance.
27. Resolved, never willfully to omit any thing, except the omission be for the glory of God; and frequently to examine my omissions.
28. Resolved, to study the Scriptures so steadily, constantly and frequently, as that I may find, and plainly perceive myself to grow in the knowledge of the same.
29. Resolved, never to count that a prayer, nor to let that pass as a prayer, nor that as a petition of a prayer, which is so made, that I cannot hope that God will answer it; nor that as a confession, which I cannot hope God will accept.
30. Resolved, to strive to my utmost every week to be brought higher in religion, and to a higher exercise of grace, than I was the week before.
31. Resolved, never to say any thing at all against any body, but when it is perfectly agreeable to the highest degree of Christian honor, and of love to mankind, agreeable to the lowest humility, and sense of my own faults and failings, and agreeable to the golden rule; often, when I have said anything against anyone, to bring it to, and try it strictly by the test of this Resolution.
32. Resolved, to be strictly and firmly faithful to my trust, that that, in Proverbs 20:6,‹A faithful man who can find?Š may not be partly fulfilled in me.
33. Resolved, to do always, what I can towards making, maintaining, and preserving peace, when it can be done without overbalancing detriment in other respects. Dec. 26, 1722.
34. Resolved, in narrations never to speak any thing but the pure and simple verity.
35. Resolved, whenever I so much question whether I have done my duty, as that my quiet and calm is thereby disturbed, to set it down, and also how the question was resolved. Dec. 18, 1722.
36. Resolved, never to speak evil of any, except I have some particular good call for it. Dec. 19, 1722.
37. Resolved, to inquire every night, as I am going to bed, wherein I have been negligent,- what sin I have committed,-and wherein I have denied myself;-also at the end of every week, month and year. Dec. 22 and 26, 1722.
38. Resolved, never to speak anything that is ridiculous, sportive, or matter of laughter on the Lord' s day. Sabbath evening, Dec. 23, 1722.
39. Resolved, never to do any thing of which I so much question the lawfulness of, as that I intend, at the same time, to consider and examine afterwards, whether it be lawful or not; unless I as much question the lawfulness of the omission.
40. Resolved, to inquire every night, before I go to bed, whether I have acted in the best way I possibly could, with respect to eating and drinking. Jan. 7, 1723.
41. Resolved, to ask myself, at the end of every day, week, month and year, wherein I could possibly, in any respect, have done better. Jan. 11, 1723.
42. Resolved, frequently to renew the dedication of myself to God, which was made at my baptism; which I solemnly renewed, when I was received into the communion of the church; and which I have solemnly re-made this twelfth day of January, 1722-23.
43. Resolved, never, henceforward, till I die, to act as if I were any way my own, but entirely and altogether God' s; agreeable to what is to be found in Saturday, January 12, 1723.
44. Resolved, that no other end but religion, shall have any influence at all on any of my actions; and that no action shall be, in the least circumstance, any otherwise than the religious end will carry it. January 12, 1723.
45. Resolved, never to allow any pleasure or grief, joy or sorrow, nor any affection at all, nor any degree of affection, nor any circumstance relating to it, but what helps religion. Jan. 12 and 13, 1723.
46. Resolved, never to allow the least measure of any fretting uneasiness at my father or mother. Resolved to suffer no effects of it, so much as in the least alteration of speech, or motion of my eye: and to be especially careful of it with respect to any of our family.
47. Resolved, to endeavor, to my utmost, to deny whatever is not most agreeable to a good, and universally sweet and benevolent, quiet, peaceable, contented and easy, compassionate and generous, humble and meek, submissive and obliging, diligent and industrious, charitable and even, patient, moderate, forgiving and sincere temper; and to do at all times, what such a temper would lead me to; and to examine strictly, at the end of every week, whether I have done so. Sabbath morning. May 5, 1723.
48. Resolved, constantly, with the utmost niceness and diligence, and the strictest scrutiny, to be looking into the state of my soul, that I may know whether I have truly an interest in Christ or not; that when I come to die, I may not have any negligence respecting this to repent of. May 26, 1723.
49. Resolved, that this never shall be, if I can help it.
50. Resolved, I will act so as I think I shall judge would have been best, and most prudent, when I come into the future world. July 5, 1723.
51. Resolved, that I will act so, in every respect, as I think I shall wish I had done, if I should at last be damned. July 8, 1723.
52. I frequently hear persons in old age, say how they would live, if they were to live their lives over again: Resolved, that I will live just so as I can think I shall wish I had done, supposing I live to old age. July 8, 1723.
53. Resolved, to improve every opportunity, when I am in the best and happiest frame of mind, to cast and venture my soul on the Lord Jesus Christ, to trust and confide in him, and consecrate myself wholly to him; that from this I may have assurance of my safety, knowing that I confide in my Redeemer. July 8, 1723.
54. Whenever I hear anything spoken in conversation of any person, if I think it would be praiseworthy in me, Resolved to endeavor to imitate it. July 8, 1723.
55. Resolved, to endeavor to my utmost to act as I can think I should do, if, I had already seen the happiness of heaven, and hell torments. July 8, 1723.
56. Resolved, never to give over, nor in the least to slacken, my fight with my corruptions, however unsuccessful I may be.
57. Resolved, when I fear misfortunes and adversities, to examine whether I have done my duty, and resolve to do it, and let the event be just as providence orders it. I will as far as I can, be concerned about nothing but my duty, and my sin. June 9, and July 13 1723.
58. Resolved, not only to refrain from an air of dislike, fretfulness, and anger in conversation, but to exhibit an air of love, cheerfulness and benignity. May 27, and July 13, 1723.
59. Resolved, when I am most conscious of provocations to ill nature and anger, that I will strive most to feel and act good-naturedly; yea, at such times, to manifest good nature, though I think that in other respects it would be disadvantageous, and so as would be imprudent at other times. May 12, July 11, and July 13.
60. Resolved, whenever my feelings begin to appear in the least out of order, when I am conscious of the least uneasiness within, or the least irregularity without, I will then subject myself to the strictest examination. July 4, and 13, 1723.
61. Resolved, that I will not give way to that listlessness which I find unbends and relaxes my mind from being fully and fixedly set on religion, whatever excuse I may have for it-that what my listlessness inclines me to do, is best to be done, etc. May 21, and July 13, 1723.
62. Resolved, never to do anything but duty, and then according to Ephesians 6:6-8, to do it willingly and cheerfully as unto the Lord, and not to man:‹knowing that whatever good thing any man doth, the same shall he receive of the Lord.Š June 25 and July 13, 1723.
63. On the supposition, that there never was to be but one individual in the world, at any one time, who was properly a complete Christian, in all respects of a right stamp, having Christianity always shining in its true luster, and appearing excellent and lovely, from whatever part and under whatever character viewed: Resolved, to act just as I would do, if I strove with all my might to be that one, who should live in my time. January 14 and July 13, 1723.
64. Resolved, when I find those ‹groanings which cannot be utteredŠ (Romans 8:26), of which the Apostle speaks, and those‹breakings of soul for the longing it hath,Š of which the Psalmist speaks, Psalm 119:20, that I will promote them to the utmost of my power, and that I will not be weary of earnestly endeavoring to vent my desires, nor of the repetitions of such earnestness. July 23, and August 10, 1723.
65. Resolved, very much to exercise myself in this, all my life long, viz. with the greatest openness, of which I am capable of, to declare my ways to God, and lay open my soul to him: all my sins, temptations, difficulties, sorrows, fears, hopes, desires, and every thing, and every circumstance; according to Dr. Manton' s 27th Sermon on Psalm 119. July 26, and Aug.10 1723.
66. Resolved, that I will endeavor always to keep a benign aspect, and air of acting and speaking in all places, and in all companies, except it should so happen that duty requires otherwise.
67. Resolved, after afflictions, to inquire, what I am the better for them, what am I the better for them, and what I might have got by them.
68. Resolved, to confess frankly to myself all that which I find in myself, either infirmity or sin; and, if it be what concerns religion, also to confess the whole case to God, and implore needed help. July 23, and August 10, 1723.
69. Resolved, always to do that, which I shall wish I had done when I see others do it. August 11, 1723.
70. Let there be something of benevolence, in all that I speak. August 17, 1723.
Sunday, December 28, 2008
State of the Blogosphere / 2008
State of the Blogosphere / 2008
Welcome to Technorati’s State of the Blogosphere 2008 report, which will be released in five consecutive daily segments. Since 2004, our annual study has unearthed and analyzed the trends and themes of blogging, but for the 2008 study, we resolved to go beyond the numbers of the Technorati Index to deliver even deeper insights into the blogging mind. For the first time, we surveyed bloggers directly about the role of blogging in their lives, the tools, time, and resources used to produce their blogs, and how blogging has impacted them personally, professionally, and financially. Our bloggers were generous with their thoughts and insights. Thanks to all of the bloggers who took the time to respond to our survey.
Blogs are Pervasive and Part of Our Daily Lives
There have been a number of studies aimed at understanding the size of the Blogosphere, yielding widely disparate estimates of both the number of blogs and blog readership. All studies agree, however, that blogs are a global phenomenon that has hit the mainstream.
The numbers vary but agree that blogs are here to stay
comScore MediaMetrix (August 2008)
Blogs: 77.7 million unique visitors in the US
Facebook: 41.0 million MySpace 75.1 million
Total internet audience 188.9 million
eMarketer (May 2008)
94.1 million US blog readers in 2007 (50% of Internet users)
22.6 million US bloggers in 2007 (12%)
Universal McCann (March 2008)
184 million WW have started a blog 26.4 US
346 million WW read blogs 60.3 US
77% of active Internet users read blogs
When I read these numbers I get excited! 77% of Internet users read blogs, that is millions of people! Christians should be using blogging to challenge and equip people!
Back to the article:
What is a Blog? The Lines Continue To Blur
Wikipedia defines blogs as:
A Blog (a contraction of the term "Web log") is a Web site, usually maintained by an individual with regular entries of commentary, descriptions of events, or other material such as graphics or video. Entries are commonly displayed in reverse-chronological order.
The Blogosphere is the collective community of all blogs. Since all blogs are on the Internet by definition, they may be seen as interconnected and socially networked. Discussions "in the Blogosphere" have been used by the media as a gauge of public opinion on various issues. But as the Blogosphere grows in size and influence, the lines between what is a blog and what is a mainstream media site become less clear. Larger blogs are taking on more characteristics of mainstream sites and mainstream sites are incorporating styles and formats from the Blogosphere.
In fact, 95% of the top 100 US newspapers have reporter blogs (see The Bivings Group).
What is Technorati Looking At and Why?
With blogging so firmly entrenched in the mainstream, the story now is about the Active Blogosphere. The trends, stories and behaviors here influence not only the rest of the Blogosphere but mainstream media as well.
Technorati defines the Active Blogosphere as: The ecosystem of interconnected communities of bloggers and readers at the convergence of journalism and conversation.
For the 2008 State of the Blogosphere Report, we wanted to go beyond the numbers to deliver insights into bloggers and the state of blogging today. Who are the bloggers, why and how do they do what they do, and what is the impact on their lives and work?
To find out, we conducted a survey from a random sample from more than 1.2 million bloggers who have registered with Technorati. In addition, we have supplemented the survey results with our traditional analysis of Technorati’s index data
Key findings from the report include:
All Blogs Are Not Created Equal
Take a quick journey into the size of the Blogosphere
A truly global phenomenon: Technorati tracked blogs in 81 languages in June 2008, and bloggers responded to our survey from 66 countries across six continents.
Here to stay: Bloggers have been at it an average of three years and are collectively creating close to one million posts every day. Blogs have representation in top-10 web site lists across all key categories, and have become integral to the media ecosystem.
Not a homogenous group: Personal, professional, and corporate bloggers all have differing goals and cover an average of five topics within each blog.
Savvy and sophisticated: On average, bloggers use five different techniques to drive traffic to their blog. They’re using an average of seven publishing tools on their blog and four distinct metrics for measuring success.
Intensifying their efforts based on positive feedback: Blogging is having an incredibly positive impact on their lives, with bloggers receiving speaking or publishing opportunities, career advancement, and personal satisfaction.
Yopu can read the rest of the very detailed report at this link:
Share your thoughts and comments about blogging!
Saturday, December 27, 2008
Over 170 killed as Israel sAttacks Gaza
Friday, December 26, 2008
Israel moves closer to Gaza invasion
Thursday, December 25, 2008
The Textus Receptus...What Have You Heard?
Thanks for the Wii Jesus!
Most of us emphatically say "NO...and I don't plan to!" What about the persecuted church out there today? Most people don't even know that they exist, after all, wasn't that a first century or Dark Ages phenomenon? NO!
Church on Christmas?! Are you crazy!
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Are my Jehovah's Witness-Friendly Friends Hiding?
Come back! Engage my arguments and let us all know the truth...
This is the "Truth Matters" blog that promotes a God-centered view and is worth looking at. Josh's mom is struggling with cancer and he's posted info on her progress, as well as asking for prayers and financial donations.
Here is what kills me and angers me beyond belief. First, there's one guy blasting him in the middle of his thread dealing with his mom's cancer about his "anti-seeker" and "Rick Warren" views...just a tad bit inappropriate place to do that, wouldn't you agree?
Then this posting took the prize! Here is what one insensitive, ungodly, biblically-inept and unlearned, supposed Christian wrote! Put the coffee cup down and remove all sharp objects from within 100 yards before reading!
"I found this through the heretics from pulpit pimps. They are always blasting my pastor Fred Price! If you would listen to Fred's teachings your mother would not have cancer in the first place! So I plead with you to disconnect yourselves from the real pimp and learn from Fred what real faith "really" is!!!! Your mom not only would not have cancer but she also wouldn't have a financial need. What pathetic faith! Rev. Price is driving a roll royce and you sell your car? Which faith actually works? The one that "WORKS"!!!"
OH MY! If Carol and Josh had faith they wouldn't be sick or have financial needs and they'd be driving a Roll Royce (should I add illiterate to the list? Rolls Royce buddy!)!!!!!!!
Charismatics...if you believe this you are sick...and your theology sickens me. I know not all Charismatics view their beliefs this way...but this really makes me angry! If you agree with this grossly unbiblical poster...you are grossly unbiblical too!!
Please pray for Josh and his mom Carol...if you have any means to help them I suggest you go to the blog and take a look at his posting.
Does "All" Always Mean All?
Folks, it is weak exegesis to say "All means all...and that's all all means!" This clip is specifically talking about 2 Peter 3:9...listen and feel free to comment.
2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
Saturday, December 20, 2008
Ordo Salutis: The Order of Salvation
Therefore, instead of imposing a chronological order we should view these as a unitary work of God to bring us into union with Christ. We must always keep in mind that the orders expressed in the following articles occur together or happen simultaneously like the turning on of a light switch or a faucet. But God turns on the light/faucet, so to speak. All aspects of the work of God continue together throughout the life of a Christian.
Historically in the Church there has been disagreement about the order of salvation, especially between those in the Reformed and Arminian camps. The following two perspectives of God's order in carrying out His redemptive work reveals the stark contrast between these two main historic views. Keep in mind that both viewpoints are based on the redemptive work which Christ accomplished for His people in history:
In the Reformed camp, the ordo salutis is 1) election, 2) predestination, 3) gospel call 4) inward call 5) regeneration, 6) conversion (faith & repentance), 7) justification, 8) sanctification, and 9) glorification. (Rom 8:29-30)
In the Arminian camp, the ordo salutis is 1) outward call 2) faith/election, 3) repentance, 4) regeneration, 5) justification, 6) perseverance, 7) glorification.
Notice the crucial difference in the orders of regeneration and faith. While the Reformed position believes spiritual life is a prerequisite for the existence of the other aspects of salvation, the Arminians believe that fallen, natural man retains the moral capacity to receive or reject the gospel of his own power. Even with the help of grace he still must find it within himself to believe or reject Christ. This has broad implications and raises questions like why does one man believe and not another? You might also notice that, according to Arminians, election is dependent on faith, not the other way around.
This is no small matter ...understanding the biblical order, while keeping in mind its unitary process, is crucial and has a profound impact on how one views God, the gospel, and the Bible as a whole.
Friday, December 19, 2008
2008 In Music
Last year I picked In Rainbows by Radiohead as album of 2008.
I was not suprised when I found that many music critics picked the same album. They could just contact me, and I could tell them every year what album is the best of the year.
I have been thinking for the past few months on what album I beleive is the best this year. I am having some trouble so in this post I am going to offer some possible best album choices.
To top my list is:
The End Is Not the End by House of Heroes. I have one word for this album, AMAZING!
Second on My list is:
Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends by Coldplay
Viva la Vida or Death and All His Friends (also simply known as Viva la Vida) is the fourth studio album by English alternative rock band Coldplay. It was released on 11 June 2008 in Japan, 12 June 2008 in the United Kingdom, and 17 June 2008 in North America. Coldplay released four singles from the record: "Violet Hill" and "Viva la Vida" in May 2008 and "Lost!" and "Lovers in Japan" in November 2008. "Viva la Vida" is the band's first song to reach number one in the United States and the United Kingdom.
The album has, to date, been the number-one-selling album in 36 countries around the world. In the United States, it sold 316,000 copies in its first day, and 720,000 in its first week. In the UK, the album sold 302,074 in three days, debuting at number one. Viva la Vida has become the most paid-for downloaded album of all time.
I was at the store the day the CD was released ready to buy it. The album is good but I was not that moved by most of the lyrics. I just did not connect with a lot of the songs. It is still a very good album.
The next one I cannot necessarily recommend the entire album but you can count on this album being talked about as one of the best of 2008:
Album: For Emma, Forever Ago
For Emma, Forever Ago sounds ghostly and ethereal, radiating otherworldly beauty, but it's also strangely gritty in a way that gives it heft.
Lyrics to Blindsided :
Bike down... down to the downtown
Down to the lockdown... boards, nails lye arond
I crouch like a crow
Contrasting the snow
For the agony, I'd rather know
'Cause blinded I am blindsided
Peek in... into the peer in
I'm not really like this... I'm probably plightless
I cup the window
I'm crippled and slow
For the agony
I'd rather know
'Cause blinded I am blindsided
Would you really rush out for me now?
Taught line... down to trhe shoreline
The end of a blood line... the moon is a cold light
There's a pull to the flow
My feet melt the snow
For the irony, i'd rather know
'Cause blinded I was blindsided
'Cause blinded I was blindsided
'Cause blinded I was blindsided
More to come and I also want the input of the readers.
Have a great night and listen to some music!
Thursday, December 18, 2008
Da Vinci code? Hidden drawings found on Leonardo's masterpiece
The French art world is in a frenzy of speculation today after the strange discovery of three almost invisible drawings on the back of a masterpiece by Leonardo da Vinci in the Louvre museum.
The mysterious sketches, which were found when the painting, Virgin and Child With Saint Anne, was taken down for experts to determine whether it could be restored, may be by the Renaissance artist himself, according to the museum in Paris.
Although the discovery is reminiscent of Dan Brown's Da Vinci Code, art experts said that the drawings would not have contained a hidden message from the painter.
They say that Da Vinci sketched out his ideas on whatever came to hand, and might have used the planks of poplar wood that formed the backing for the work, which dates from the 1500s.
Here is the link to the original story:
Does God Have Sperm?
I apologize for the blunt title but I am at a lost of words. I just listened to a sermon and I am still trying to figure out what I should write. The sermon was preached at North Side Baptist Church which is located in Abilene, TX. The sermon was preached on December 14, 2008. The title of the sermon was, What's So Special About Jesus #2. You can find the sermon at this link:
I have listened to sermons from this church for years and I have gotten very close to declaring that this church is heretical and people should leave it! That is very serious charge so I have been very careful and have been quiet. Today however, I can no longer remain silent. I am sick and tired of Churches preaching complete garbage from pulpits and no one seems to care!
I am simply going to post the comments from the sermon and I will try to post more when I can figure out what to say!
The comments occured at the 14:30 mark of the sermon:
"And that is what the virgin birth was all about, to take a human father out of the way. So the very seed of God, the very sperm of God could be impregnated into Mary’s womb, and when that seed of God produced life in Mary’s womb that blood that flowed in the veins of Jesus was literally the very blood of God."
I am left speechless...
BEST OF 2008
Best Movies of 2008
Best Albums of 2008
Best Books of 2008
Top News Stories of 2008
Top Religious News Stories of 2008.
I may add other categories over the next few days. I need your help in making this work. Submit your best of list! You can post your list in the comment section for this post or e-mail them to me. Teenagers, I want to know what you think as well!
So let the discussion begin!
Finding God in Galapagos
In mid-September 1835, the Beagle anchored off San Cristóbal, the easternmost of the Galápagos Islands. Straddling the equator, these Pacific islands were no lush paradise, but dry and relatively barren. Over the next five weeks, Charles Darwin trudged through sun-scorched lava fields, prickly thickets, and cloud-covered forests and meadows, collecting specimens as he went.
The young man was intrigued by what he found on these lonely islands, six hundred miles off the coast of South America. Giant iguanas basked in the sun on the rocky coasts, while giant land tortoises lumbered along “well-beaten” paths in the interior. Darwin’s job was not always serious. He tried to ride one of the giant land tortoises, with comical results.
To Darwin’s surprise, many of the animals and plants were similar to what he had seen earlier on the continent of South America. And there were often multiple species of each sort, more similar to one another than to any species outside the islands. Trained in England to believe in the “doctrine of creation of each separate species,” he was astonished at what he had found in the wider world.
Why would a Creator put similar but discrete species on islands and then make them look most similar to species on the nearest continent? This was the sort of question that Darwin’s trip made him ask.
Actually it was not until after his return to England, while unpacking and cataloging his collections and polishing his journals that the significance of his findings really sank in. What he had seen influenced his thinking for the rest of his life. Indeed, it would influence the thinking of the scientific community for the next 150 years and beyond.
Darwin made many stops during his voyage on the Beagle. Of all the observations he made, most striking was the similarity between the wildlife on the Galápagos Islands and the nearby South American mainland. This did not fit with the common expectation that species on islands should be very different from species on the mainland because they were created separately.
To read the rest of the article follow this link:
Finding God in Galapagos
Sunday, December 14, 2008
A MUST READ BLOG
Today I want to point everyone to the, 2 Worlds Collide blog. This is a great blog and it is one that is worth the time to read and to visit everyday. When you visit, leave a comment and let them know the Preaching Today blog sent you.
Have a great Lord's Day
Saturday, December 13, 2008
Response #2 to a Jehovah's Witness-Supportive Person
Friday, December 12, 2008
The Hidden Gospel?
Jehovah's Witnesses Don't Appear to Witness?
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Response to a Jehovah's Witness, Part 1
- "What's your point? Jesus said, as recorded in John 3:16, that God gave his only begotten son. That is simple. He was God's only begotten son prior to his coming to earth. Jesus was the first thing that Jehovah God created. Jesus can not be Jehovah if salvation is to occur."
I would think that my purpose was quite clear...to refute the notion that John 3:16 is a refutation of the deity of Christ and that it teaches that He is a created being. I think you missed my point...take a look at the Lexicons...the word monogenes does not imply procreation...the word literally means "one of a kind/class"...or "unique."
The Son of God was truly unique and in a class all by Himself. Of course, I don't take my theology from a single verse as that's dangerous and leads to heresy. You assume a "son" has to have a beginning because that's our experience as human beings...but does that have to remain true with God?
My first thought is that you missed my point that the word doesn't mean physical procreation...it means literally "one of a kind." All the verses that use this word and refer to humans in the NT, and not the Lord Jesus Christ, (see Luke 7:12; 8:42; 9:38 and Heb 11:17) emphasize that they were one of a kind- the only/unique children. Of course, since they were only humans they had a beginning. The other verses that refer to the Lord Jesus Christ you as presupposing that He too must have had a beginning at one point in the past...and that He's not divine.
Hebrews 11:17 makes this point very, very clearly; Hebrews 11:17-18- "By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son, 18 Of whom it was said, That in Isaac shall thy seed be called"
Obviously Isaac was not his only son, right? Hadn't Abraham already had a child called Ishmael? Obviously. The Bible uses the word "monogenes" to show that Ishmael was Abraham's unique, one-of-a-kind son. He was unique in that He was (as seen in verse 18) the impossible child produced of a womb that was barren (Sarah was too old to have kids!)...and he was the preserved Seedline of Christ. The KJV rendering does not get to the clear meaning of the word in this case. Isaac was NOT his only procreated child...he was the unique son that God had given him.
Couple questions for you...and if you really care to get your point across about the fact that only the Watchtower has the truth, you'll take the time to answer and set forth what you believe and why.
Who is referred to in this passage? Revelation 1:8- "I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty."
Who is the "Alpha and Omega, beginning and the end"? This person says he is the Lord and is the Almighty, right? This is Jehovah, right?
Looking forward to your reply!
Monday, December 8, 2008
Charismatic Flop...False Hope Again!
Is Jesus Only Begotten?
Don't believe me? Take a test...go to the following JW website and read what they have to say:
In the following website the JWs clearly (but not in any detail) spell out their view. Here is what they say:
- "Yes, Jesus was the only one directly created by God himself. Therefore, he is called God’s “only-begotten Son.” (John 3:16)" http://www.watchtower.org/e/20050915/article_02.htm
Here is an even more in depth discussion of their belief on this matter, http://www.watchtower.org/e/ti/article_05.htm:
- "Trinitarians claim that in the case of Jesus, "only-begotten" is not the same as the dictionary definition of "begetting," which is "to procreate as the father." (Webster's Ninth New Collegiate Dictionary) They say that in Jesus' case it means "the sense of unoriginated relationship," a sort of only son relationship without the begetting. (Vine's Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words) Does that sound logical to you? Can a man father a son without begetting him?
- Furthermore, why does the Bible use the very same Greek word for "only-begotten" (as Vine admits without any explanation) to describe the relationship of Isaac to Abraham? Hebrews 11:17 speaks of Isaac as Abraham's "only-begotten son." There can be no question that in Isaac's case, he was only-begotten in the normal sense, not equal in time or position to his father. The basic Greek word for "only-begotten" used for Jesus and Isaac is mo·no·ge·nes', from mo'nos, meaning "only," and gi'no·mai, a root word meaning "to generate," "to become (come into being)," states Strong's Exhaustive Concordance. Hence, mo·no·ge·nes' is defined as: "Only born, only begotten, i.e. an only child."—A Greek and English Lexicon of the New Testament, by E. Robinson. The Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, edited by Gerhard Kittel, says: "[Mo·no·ge·nes'] means 'of sole descent,' i.e., without brothers or sisters." This book also states that at John 1:18; 3:16, 18; and 1 John 4:9, "the relation of Jesus is not just compared to that of an only child to its father. It is the relation of the only-begotten to the Father."
So how would you respond? Here is my analysis...
#1- They say begetting doesn't make sense since the english definition implies creation/procreation. Simple rebuttal- English translations are fallible and don't always convey the intended meaning of a word...the Greek is the key here.
#2- Now...when they get into the Greek they have the air of authority...but not really. Just because someone quotes Greek and Hebrew to you doesn't mean they are scholarly and right! They quote the Greek word behind "only begotten" as monogenes...and they are correct. This word is used in the following verses; Luke 7:12, Luke 8:42, Luke 9:38, John 1:14, John 3:16, 3:18, Heb 11:17 and 1 John 4:9.
Here is what they said above: monos means "only", or one...this is correct. They run into problems when they speak of the second part of the compound word, genes.
Gennao is a Greek verb that means "be father of; bear, give birth to (perhaps conceive); pass. be born; lead to, cause" (Thayer's)- this is not the word on the 2nd half of monogenes. Genos is the noun form of ginomai and is the source of the second 1/2 of the word. Here is what it means:
Thayer's Greek Lexicon states that genos means "race, stock" and doesn't always imply procreation from a mother/father. It can also be translated as "nation." Here are some verses that help to show this (note that not all imply "procreation"):
- Acts 7:19- "The same dealt subtilly with our kindred, and evil entreated our fathers, so that they cast out their young children, to the end they might not live."
- 2 Corinthians 11:26 "In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren;"
- Philippians 3:5 "Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee;"
- 1 Peter 2:9 "But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:"
- Mark 7:26 "The woman was a Greek, a Syrophenician by nation; and she besought him that he would cast forth the devil out of her daughter."
- Mark 9:29 "And he said unto them, This kind can come forth by nothing, but by prayer and fasting."
- Friberg Lexicon defined the word as "of what is the only one of its kind of class unique."
- UBS Lexicon "only, unique"
- Louw-Nida Lexicon- "pertaining to what is unique in the sense of being the only one of the same kind or class - 'unique, only.'"
- LEH Lexicon- "the only member of a kin, only-begotten, only (of children); alone in its kind, one only"
- Ginrich Lexicon- "Only, unique"
Saturday, December 6, 2008
Such a God should be derided!
(William S. Plumer, "A Treatise on Providence" 1865)
The unrenewed heart is atheistic in its inclinations.
"They say--The Lord doesn't see it. The God of Jacob
doesn't pay attention." Psalm 94:7
"The wicked say to themselves--'God isn't watching!
He will never notice!' Arise, O Lord! Punish the wicked,
O God!" Psalm 10:11-12
Nothing more derogatory to the character of God can
possibly be said, than that He does not rule the world.
God reigns is a logical conclusion from God is. To deny
God's providence is as atheistic as to deny His existence!
A God, who neither sees, nor hears, nor knows, nor cares,
nor helps, nor saves--is a vanity, and can never claim
homage from intelligent men. Such a God should be
derided--not worshiped! He might suit the mythology
of Paganism, or meet the demands of an infidel heart
--but could never command the allegiance, or win the
confidence of an enlightened and pious man!
The world may as well be without a God--as have one
who is incompetent to rule it, or, who, wrapping Himself
in a mantle of careless indifference, abandons creation
to the governance of puny mortals, to the rule of devils,
or to the sway of a blind chance! Such conduct may well
comport with the character of false gods--but is wholly
abhorrent to the nature of Jehovah! God's tender mercies
are over all His works. His kingdom rules over all!
"Our God is in heaven and does whatever He pleases!"
"For I know that the Lord is great; our Lord is greater than
all gods. The Lord does whatever He pleases in heaven and
on earth, in the seas and all the depths!" Psalm 135:5-6
"Hallelujah! For the Lord our God, the Almighty, reigns!"