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Advent Tradition

December 15, 2007

Ps 97:12-98:1

12 Rejoice in the LORD, you righteous,

And give thanks at the remembrance of His holy name.

This is the second Sunday in Advent and this is a season of tradition. You may have a tree up at your house or an advent wreath on the table. Perhaps you go caroling or give presents to loved ones. We have a young tradition at this church of having a lessons and carols service during advent. All of these traditions make for a memorable Christmas season. In some respects even the Church calendar is a tradition, after all it does not appear that Jesus was born on December 25th.

What is the purpose of tradition? To paraphrase Edith Schaefer: Traditions are great gifts, meant to guard and protect the greater gifts. It is the most attested historical fact in all the world that Jesus Christ came into the world for the Salvation of man. That He was born of a woman, lived, was crucified and buried, the third day He rose again from the dead and ascended again to His Father. Our traditions at this time of year are great gifts and ought to be received as gifts but, they are not the greatest gift.

Candles on your mantle are not substitutes for the light of the gospel. Evergreen trees are great; everlasting life – greater. Carols are great; worshiping in Spirit and in Truth – greater. The church calendar is great – the advent of Jesus Christ in the hearts of men and women – greater by far.  Come let us worship our Lord and God.

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I Know Dogs That Would So Kill This Kitty…

December 6, 2007

Some say that would be a crime against cuteness… who are we to judge?

HT: Bryan over at Hot Air (he is the softer side of HA)

For My Wife Or Any Other Lovable Geeks Out There

September 29, 2007

Ed, my dentist and friend, needs to watch this as well:

HT: Barlow

Ok Ok I Relent

August 31, 2007

Notice a nice beefy post coming right up.

Working Through Stuff

August 19, 2007

A week ago we had the right reverend James B. Jordan in the pulpit of Providence Community Church.   It is normal for us to have a time of discussion about the sermon after the worship service and Reverend Jordan led that discussion as well.  We were having audio problems that day and neither the sermon or his discussion are available at this time.  I would like to get some discussion on one thing Rev. Jordan said though so here it is…

His sermon was on the use of symbolism in the bible and how we, as western Christians, have difficulty thinking in those categories.  It was quite interesting and gave me much to think about.  The discussion that followed challenged my thinking about one particular event in the Genesis creation/fall account.

What was the first sin in the garden?  I know that Adam represented all of mankind with his sin but in what way did Eve sin before Adam?  In particular was Eve sinning when she said, ” “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; 3 but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.'” 

Here was Rev. Jordan’s take on the issue:  Eve learned the commandment from Adam.  She was his helper and worked with Adam to flesh out obedience to the command of God.  The phrase “nor shall you touch it” was simply applied theology (my term not Rev. Jordan’s).  She issued a good commentary on the law and it was not an adding to the Word of God.

I had never heard that interpretation before though I have since found that Calvin held to something not much different: 

“When she says, God has forbidden them to eat or to touch, some suppose the second word to be added for the purpose of charging God with too great severity, because he prohibited them even from the touch. But I rather understand that she hitherto remained in obedience, and expressed her pious disposition by anxiously observing the precept of God; only, in proclaiming the punishment, she begins to give ways by inserting the adverb “perhaps,” when God has certainly pronounced, “Ye shall die the death.””

And Matthew Henry as well:

“It was an instance of her resolution that she adhered to the command, and faithfully repeated it, as of unquestionable certainty: “God hath said, I am confident he hath said it, You shall not eat of the fruit of this tree;” and that which she adds, Neither shall you touch it, seems to have been with a good intention, not (as some think) tacitly to reflect upon the command as too strict (Touch not, taste not and handle not), but to make a fence about it: “We must not eat, therefore we will not touch. It is forbidden in the highest degree, and the authority of the prohibition is sacred to us.””

I am just curious about two things:  1)  Am I the only one who was taught that Eve sinned in “adding to the Word of God?”  2)  Is there a reformed teacher that holds that Eve sinned in this area?

This is not a like discovering election for the first time or anything; but I am wondering what else I don’t know…

al sends

Saturday Night Funny

May 26, 2007

 

al sends

Glimpse of Heaven?

February 19, 2007

AngelsWell… I think we can take away a few things away from this recording…

1. Angels love 1970’s praise choruses.
2. Angels really do have harps
3. They also like a little funk, since there are bass guitars in heaven.
4. Soloists in heaven are just as out of place as they are in church worship services.

al sends