Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Are Calvinism & Complementarianism Related?
Yes, there are a few verses that are puzzling but are not required to be understood as comps understand them.

Interesting way to phrase it. I would say the complenetarian view is a recurring example, thought and theme throughout scripture and not, as you say, a few verses or an isolated example with nothing surrounding it. But then again, the debate has been hashed and rehashed many times.

Read actual comments.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Piper Thunders To Obama on Abortion
The president (and we, for that matter) reveals and speaks his worldview when he explains why he makes decisions that he does (which he (and presidents past) does for all "national" decisions).

Read actual comments.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Stimulus Package Takes Aim at Babies Sorry to see edits having to occur. It seems odd, but as they say, oh, well.
2) I heard a quote from Dr. Russell Moore identifying the thinking read above:
“The abortion culture is downstream from many things that are going on in our churches. Because before we aborted children in the womb, we aborted them in our minds…..We began to see children as a burden. Children as an obstacle.”--Russell More
3) Along that lines, it was nice to hear Steve on the Dr. Mohler radio program. He had some great advice for your young marrieds here.

New Comment
Craig M. (#19): astute...that is Dr. Moore (if you've ever listened to him much)!

Tiffany (#20): I agree that is a question that has weighed heavily on me, as well. Not that I've figured the answer, though. It's (bc) something that I've had a tendency to "just accept", but rarely even thought it through. It is a heart issue, and no one knows this except ourselves (that sounds like terrible grammar) and God (and sometimes we like to delude ourselves into thinking it one way, but deep down we really know the answer is different). Funny thing. Candice answered almost exactly our question.

PS: Dr. Mohler had a radio program on this, but I couldn't find it. But I did find his commentary on it.

New Comment

Adam (#23): Interesting. I love Albert Mohler and Russell Moore, but their views on marriage and children are not Biblical. Quite an accusation. To what specifically do you refer?

And regarding the population concern, many times, when some speak on the declining population, it is in reference to the 1.3 children per household, not that the population needs to increase each generation, but it shouldn’t almost ½ in one generation.

The problem is our society only thinks about themselves - I believe that is exactly the point of Dr. Moore.

I would say that Dr. Moore and Dr. Mohler (and many others) favor a thoughtful consideration of contraception. It is a rightful warning against the thought that we should have a McDonalds life (what I want, when I want and anything short of that is a right to complain).

Read actual comments.

Nancy Pelosi Thinks We Need Less Children Being Born
“The abortion culture is downstream from many things that are going on in our churches. Because before we aborted children in the womb, we aborted them in our minds…..We began to see children as a burden. Children as an obstacle.”--Russell More

I think that is a very revealing thought. It’s an erosion of our consciences. I agree with Joe (his two quoted thoughts………which, I think, means that he believes them to be bad, according to the last few threads), but the dulling of our own conscience is a great travesty that has led where we are.

New Comment:
Just out of curiosity, Paul, which fiscal conservatives are telling poor people not to have kids (I'm not as knowledgeable about politics as you and most here).

New Comment

Though not addressed to me, I’ll pipe in……
how NOT to have kids
Paul, I would say it is an argument that the education championed exalts sex (little mention of any repercussions and a lot on how you can avoid repercussions), says this has no repercussions and if it feels right, do it. IMO, education definitely belongs in the home. And there, I would say, is where a great difficulty lies. The public education system is steeped first and foremost (all too often, but there are exceptions) in the “if it feels right, do it” mentality. And when kids are immersed in that for so much of their lives, it presents a great difficulty. There’s no pithy answer, and most who argue against your position (though you would call us southern mouth-breathers) continually weigh that balance and do so with great care.

I think it is a travesty that you make that statement about women and, presumably, complementarian thought. It was highly insulting, but I’m sure you knew that.

And what do you say to the op-ed guy from the National Review who says that poor people shouldn’t have children?
I would say he is showing elitist ignorance. God-exalting values are what are to be elevated. I think in this case (and this will be sooooooooo unpopular, I know), what that means is a cessation of economic crutches provided by our government. Part of the repercussion of having large government handouts and subsidies is a devaluation of community and personal interdependence. The care for the poor should belong to the people in our communities. The sad thing is that I doubt we’ll be back at that point until a “reformation” of sorts happens again (if ever in this nation). Right now, the handout is given as a big, giant grey box. When a handout is given through community action (I would say further, especially when through faith), there is a hand on the other side of that handout. It’s no longer impersonal. There is a body that looks them in the eye.

I suppose I could go on, but I see that we’ve meandered off of the original point of Pelosi’s idea of pushing birth control for those who are economically unfit. Say, wait a minute. Isn’t that what I, as a conservative, was just accused of?

New Comment

To clarify, the first line (in #21) should be "exalts pre-marital sex".

Also, Rick, the fascinating thing is Pelosi's statement of "Nothing in my life will ever, ever compare to being a mom." I don't see how that squares together, but oh, well.

New Comment
Not making a bold stand, it was simply a purposeful shot (straw-man stereotype) that seemed to be insulting. Or, perhaps to soften the language, it sure appeared to be a purposeful slur. If it were not meant as an insult, you would have brought forth your argument (about head coverings).

Regarding your argument (and way off topic again), now, I am not as eloquent as most of my complementarian brothers and sisters, so I'd say take a look at questions 32 and 33 here. Not that I haven't considered this as well as many other questions unearthed (from this site, especially! What a great crowd!) on my walk. To summarize the summary (there is far more expounded upon about this than the one reference):

(1) we seek for clues in the context that this is so; (2) we compare other Scriptures relating to the same subject to see if we are dealing with limited application or with an abiding requirement; and (3) we try to show that the cultural specificity of the command is not rooted in the nature of God, the gospel, or the created order.

I posted your requested comment.

Read actual comments.

Obama Forces Tax-payers To Fund Abortions

I know you meant Dr. Burk, but Ted Slater had an interesting take on closing gitmo (is it an acronym? I never noticed.).

Read actual comments.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Robert George on Roe v. Wade don't remember the Koop study way back when and I guess I've never heard much about long-term stress disorder. But the suicide rate (read: short term stress disorder) is 3 – 7X in post abortion women. Also, when reading reports (regardless of which side you seek to bolster), stating things like “no high-quality” allows a dismissal of nearly anything you want. That said, I would trust that Dr.’s at JH would be less likely to fall victim of that (then again, pride puffs up…..). I don’t find it hard to believe that there isn’t a long-term stress disorder. With a bevy of people saying “no, it’s perfectly fine” would allow one to suppress quite a bit. Thanks, Susan!

Read actual comments.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Obama on Roe v. Wade Anniversary know, there was a discussion I read recently about the trinkets that the president carries around. One of the questions that came up by association was one of accountability. I like the new whitehouse site (I think). It has some slick parts of it that could relate. I think that Nathan asks a good question, though. Could Nathan’s proposed question ever get asked at the press conference? But also (by association of association), how do evangelical (/catholic/pro-life/etc.) Obama voters (I don’t want to say supporters since he is my president and by default I support, though disagree with his proposed policy here) square this? To me, this falls out of the bounds of overall reduction of abortions (as our policies really won’t impact other countries’ pregnancy rates). Is this just something about which an Obama voter disagrees with him? Is it all part of the plan, do you think?

BTW, I would say that we shouldn’t nit-pick every decision the president makes (even though I fear that is exactly what will happen), this just happens to be a big one that has far-reaching implications.

PS: If anyone hasn’t looked at the new whitehouse website, I suggest checking it out. Pretty slick. Definitely a great aspect of a “next generation” president dedicated to change (I hope….ha ha…..)!

New Comment
Paul: A specialty that might drive you crazy, but as a musician, you should appreciate:
Béla Fleck Brings The Banjo Back To Africa.

Read actual comments.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Young Married Readers? a non-young-but-young-married, but I have been involved in a group that went through a book that was an excellent combination of theology, application and winsome empirical data (stories). For anyone interested, it's The Most Important Year In a Man's/Woman's Life. I would be interested in the same blend here. In our group (and the other young marrieds I know), it is always an isolating event (leave your father and mother…..and often your singles group, rearranging your schedule pulls us away from time with friends, etc.). So I would say:

Encouragement (we’re not alone, it can be done)
Theological Admonition (The bible is clear for so many things)
Practical Admonition (older couples have been there, what is their practical advice)
Helpful resources (though the FotF site is replete with these!)

Read actual comments.

Good Luck, Mr. President’m struck by a few things

* - Mr. Slater, I agree with your post, but it would have been better to have said this during the campaign (I think it was highlighted back then…..or so I’m told). Or at least a day or two after the inauguration.
* - For people who say (or imply) “lighten up”, folks sure do take things seriously.

When first read, I thought the intent of the post was light. Just a raised eyebrow of “hmm, how odd”. Then I read the furor that returned. Thus,

* - I think the comments do highlight a lack of “take every thought captive”.

I think the main thrust is the cavalier attitude towards a just God who will judge all. I think we should find idol worship abhorrent. From bowing down literally to Gautama to forgoing a relationship with God to sacrifice at the altar of greed (see our credit card bills). Each is offensive to God. Every one of us (beginning with me) at one time or another enjoys putting God on the shelf and minimizing who He is and exactly what He thinks. And (given satan’s help) we are really good at justifying and minimizing things. Acting that something isn’t really a big deal. As far as this goes, I don’t know what President Obama thinks when he reaches for and grasps that chit or that little statue. I (very fortunately) do not know his heart. I wish that he would tell us. As a fellow believer, it seems that he should be accountable for something as conspicuous as this. First, since he was the one who opened this dialog (so to speak) with the picture (this isn’t a telephoto look onto a private secluded beach, folks). But second because we are to be accountable to our body (the Church). We enjoy thinking things not as sin but as a preference and that it’s nobody’s business anyway. We Christians in America in particular delude ourselves this way. I get to conceal my life because it’s private and nobody’s business. But that which is spoken in the dark will be brought to the light. Sometimes that will happen to us before Christ returns. Am I happy when that happens to me? Not at first. But it is a necessary process that demonstrates patience by a supreme God with a self-centered, me-first sinner.

Unlike Mr. Slater’s post, mine was more of a rant.

New Comment
Charlotte C (#57): Well put, I wish my browser updated and I could have read it before my original post (to avoid the redundancies).

New Comment
Michelle (#74) (in addition to the 1 Cor 9), were you thinking of 1 Cor 4 –

Therefore do not go on passing judgment before the time, but wait until the Lord comes who will both bring to light the things hidden in the darkness and disclose the motives of men's hearts; and then each man's praise will come to him from God.

And yes, an excellent thing to remember.

Read actual comments.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A La Carte (1/20) That cracks me up.
Tim: I think you need to do more stumping. You're only 61 GR's from beating out Piper (ha ha.........ha..........). Of course, DG has more authors there........

Read actual comments.

Rick Warren To Pray In Jesus’ Name

You provoked a few thoughts.

1) What you did was to say, take out the offending ideas and language and the prayer is OK (even, as you say, particularly good). Isn’t that kind of like saying, well, if you substitute “the one true God” for Baal and Ashtaroth and the Israelite’s prayers to those gods were really OK.
2) He called it a prayer and invoked God’s name. Doesn’t that immediately elevate what we say?
3) While you and I “amen” righteous works (such as clothing the poor, seeking equality in human rights…..protecting the unborn……OK, that last one wasn’t mentioned, but still….), when offered to the gods of all, they are offensive. A good speech of what we can do to help humanity, yes. In the remotest consideration of prayer to God, not remotely pleasing.

Or so is my thought, anyway.

Read actual comments.

The Cost of Education know, I’m so torn by the education system these days. This discussion has brought several thoughts to my mind.

1) Why do we just “accept” that it’s OK to think well, it’s government, inefficiencies are the norm? Shouldn’t we expect a little more out of those who lead our country?
2) We should care about the education of others.
a. It nearly always leads to better things.
b. It is a great way to get out (of the cycle of poverty) for those who want to put into it.
c. We should care about the education of, but we should never rely on gov’t to be our giving source (Support is fine, I’d say, but never rely). I read it here, I think, that we, as Christians, should be embarrassed by every dollar spent by the government providing for those in need (as we should). While a bit over-the-top, it’s spot on to highlight this fact.
3) Render to Ceasar gives me some comfort here, however, the state of much of the education system is flowing freely against the grain of Christian thought and is growing increasingly hostile towards Christian thought.
4) But that doesn’t matter since we do live in a democratic society (though some of the recent laws (mandating accredited schooling) rendering homeschooling a non-option puts that at odds, too).
5) If the statistics were true (75% of Americans are Christian), it would make sense that their “cheerful giving” (ala 2 Cor 9) would far surpass that and would likely be a more charitable environment to boot.
6) I’ve heard it argued that government programs (public education being one of them in a sense) tend to impart sluggard tendencies. Can it also be said that we (as Christians) also fall into a trap of not giving because “we gave at the office” (through taxes?)?

Even if you don’t agree with Ted, he brings up a thought-provoking subject.

Read actual comments.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The Bishop’s Unchristian Prayer
I suppose he's being biblical. He promised not to pray a Christian prayer and he kept his promise. If he believes what he says (“…that every religion’s [g]od judges us…”), then I suppose he's swearing (to say a non-Christian prayer) to his own (eternal) hurt.

Very sad indeed. I noticed he had to shoehorn in the homosexual slant as well (”Bless us with anger – at discrimination, at home and abroad, against….gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender people.”). I wonder if Rick Warren will shoehorn in his same view on that subject (my hope is that he wouldn’t as that should not be his agenda for this grand stage.).

New Comment:


There is a difference between not discriminating and standing for your faith. There’s a difference between admitting we are idolaters and saying that idolatry is OK and we should embrace it (spot on that God is an idol-smasher). There is a difference between having different views of God* versus being prepared to present a reason for the hope that we have. Even in the most broad reading, this is non-Christian. I am all for tolerance. I agree that our freedom of speech affords all the right (privilege) of speaking in honor of whatever they want. We can’t say that Robinson doesn’t have a right to be there (that would be discrimination in a negative manner). He clearly does have the right (we don’t live in a Theocracy). However, there should be impassioned responses to this. We should stand for our God. Not doing so behind a veiled let’s-all-be-friends (or log-plank) motif is the lukewarm church. If you’re giving a lecture on religions of the world, great, (we must) include talk of others’ beliefs, if you’re discussing the rights of humans in-totem across the world, again, have at “the god’s of different people” (we should). When you’re a Christian and you begin to pray to God, there is no room for praying to the many gods of others.

To tag onto what Joshua said (and Darius Amen’d), I was reading Philippians the other day and ran across this:

“For, as I have often told you before and now say again even with tears, many live as enemies of the cross of Christ.”

Weeping for those who do not know Christ. There is no justification for idolatry. To attempt to dismiss it is to rejoice in their position. We should be praying and weeping for them. Something that should have been the first words out of my “mouth” (to the joy of those around me, I don’t read my comments aloud ;-).

* - Though anyone calling themselves Christian have a specific view of a singular God who became man and died for our sins....Robinson very clearly does not. I know you didn’t say that specifically as there is a difference between what God wants and who He is.

Read actual comments.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Wright Misrepresents Piper in Interview

At the risk of opening more than is bargained for on this thread, what kind of a comparison are you making? Are you saying that Denny misrepresented the thoughts and views of the manifesto? or the writers? or...? Just thought I'd clarify.

Read actual comments.

More on the Gay Bishop at Inauguration“horrified” at how “specifically and aggressively Christian they were.”

I don't understand why HE would want to be associated with a Christian denomination (other than the fact that if he weren't, no one would even give him the time of day, I suppose). If you want to jettison beliefs, be bold and do so. Go nail your 95 theses on the door and head out preaching your "truth". I suppose I just don't get it.

It's like David says, just the times we live in (it's like everyone does what's right in their own eyes or something....)

Err…..just to clarify, I meant nail his own version of his 95 theses. I am not castigating Luther there.

Read actual comments.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Driscoll and the Calvinist Revival
Good question, Mr. Thomas! I would venture that she is indicating that (taking a shot at) Calvinists believe that they are persecuted and if they are persecuted, they must be going to heaven. It seems like Ms. Worthen wrote her piece on soundbites, wikipedia and attending one Sunday’s services.

While there’s a ton in the article that makes me get a puzzled look, the article says “[t]raditional evangelical theology falls apart in the face of real tragedy…” I think that is sort of true. I think prosperity gospel (prosperity-centered “theology”) does. Evangelicals (those committed to bible doctrine rather than bible guidelines) do not. In many folks’ minds, prosperity = evangelical = business plan-based church.

Funny quote:

“New converts stay in touch via blogs and Facebook groups with names like…‘Calvinism: The Group That Chooses You.’”

Read actual comments.