Friday, March 20, 2009

An Answer to my last Question

Apparently a few people have gotten their feathers a bit ruffled by a recent article and its follow-up from Mark Dever.

People have forgotten, as Mark Dever has stated: “That a Baptist thinks infant baptism is wrong was no news to earlier generations of paedobaptists”.

While this should not be a dividing issue in the Church, it is something that should be thought about and discussed rationally.

Unfortunately, some of those who have taken issue with Mark Dever’s stance have ran to their Confessions as defense instead of the Bible. In order to not continue any Baptist/paedobaptists flame wars (because that is NOT the point of this post), I will not be posting links to those responses.

Now, while I concede that the Bible is not absolutely clear on the correct mode of baptism, I agree more with the Baptist stance (Mark 16:16).

The interesting thing is that this touches on another post I was thinking of writing on: how does your reading of Scripture change if, instead of having βαπτίζω transliterated as baptize, you translate it into what it means… immerse?

Monday, March 16, 2009

Questions from the Mirror

Christian, what to you do when you hear or read something that challenges the teachings of your tradition?

Do you thoughtfully consider the point brought up and walk in the discernment given to you through the Holy Spirit? Do you head to the Scriptures to see what God has to say, or do you instantly run to the comfort of the teachers of your tradition and blindly parrot doctrine you may have not examined thoroughly?

Remember, all man's doctrine has flaws due to our fallen nature. The only perfect Doctrine was in Christ. Putting more emphasis on man's confessions over God's Word is a sure way to fall into apostasy. 

Confessions and traditions are fine as long as they never place themselves over God's Word.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

There are times when a writer should be forced away from their keyboard

Denita sent me an e-mail the other day regarding some bible version surfing she was doing and passed on this "gem" from "The Message":

Romans 8:1-4
The Solution Is Life on God's Terms

^1-2 With the arrival of Jesus, the Messiah, that fateful dilemma is resolved. Those who enter into Christ's being-here-for-us no longer have to live under a continuous, low-lying black cloud. A new power is in operation. The Spirit of life in Christ, like a strong wind, has magnificently cleared the air, freeing you from a fated lifetime of brutal tyranny at the hands of sin and death.

^3-4 God went for the jugular when he sent his own Son. He didn't deal with the problem as something remote and unimportant. In his Son, Jesus, he personally took on the human condition, entered the disordered mess of struggling humanity in order to set it right once and for all. The law code, weakened as it always was by fractured human nature, could never have done that.

The law always ended up being used as a Band-Aid on sin instead of a deep healing of it. And now what the law code asked for but we couldn't deliver is accomplished as we, instead of redoubling our own efforts, simply embrace what the Spirit is doing in us.
My brain hurts just trying to read this. Christ's "being-here-for-us", "low-lying black cloud", "disordered mess of struggling humanity", "Band-Aid on sin"....

Sin and death are just low-lying black clouds?!?! Where/what is the offence of "low-lying black clouds"? Why should God feel wrath regarding "low-lying black clouds"? Why is eternal punishment a requirement for "low-lying black clouds"? Why is this author considered a Godly man if he removes the offense of our unrepentant existence before God from the Bible?

When we live in sin, we are a horrid stench before God. We are not like the old cartoons, just a bothersome rain cloud that hovers over the Almighty's head, occasionally irritating Him with a little bolt of lightning. Our very existence offends Him. He tolerates this only so that His Glory will be fully revealed to all in the end.

This watering down of the Word is 2 Timothy 4:3 in action. The more you pore over the style of writing in "The Message" you start seeing the man-centeredness of "The Message" as opposed to the God and Christ exalting message of the Bible.

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Questions from the Mirror

Christian, do you ever ask yourself the question, "Why me"? How often do you reflect on the fact that you were called and chosen by God, but others are not.

When this question comes into your thoughts, do you spend time churning it over in your mind? And when you churn it over, what answer do you arrive at?

If your answer has anything to do with you, then repenting of your arrogance and spending a long time in God's Word would probably be a wise thing.

One final question...

When you arrive at the answer, what does it motivate you to do?