Daily Post #110

Clouds, Wind, Rain, and Promises: This morning I started the day by reading Proverbs 25. Tomorrow I will read Proverbs 26. The following verse stood out to me: “Like clouds and wind without rain is one who boasts of gifts never given” (Prov. 25:14). When I read this, I immediately thought of my two older children (ages 9 and 5). When they ask if I will do something, the only way that they do not hear a resounding “YES” is if I say “No” several times. If I say “Yes,” they do not forget it. They will bring it up over and over as the day goes on if I have not yet done what I promised. If I say, “Maybe later,” or “We will have to see,” then they still take that as a “Yes.” Humor aside, I do not want to be a father of “clouds and wind without rain.” Am I keeping my “little” words to my children? Whether a parent or not, do you keep your word? Do you keep your promises? Can people count on you? That is such a basic, fundamental question. Are you dependable? When you are not able to keep a promise, do you talk to the person and explain why, or do you go silent and just hope that they will forget? I suggest the following:

  1. Do not make promises hastily; be wise and careful with what you promise
  2. When you make a promise, keep it even when difficult (Psalms 15:4 “who keeps an oath even when it hurts”)
  3. When you absolutely cannot keep a promise, reach out to the person and give a heartfelt explanation why

For Christians, is this not what faithfulness, one of the nine fruits of the Spirit, entails?


Daily Post #109

Education as Soulcraft: This is a topic that I have been researching as of late. Studies in Christian Ethics published an issue on this topic a few years back. I have been reading through the various articles. It is so interesting. The basic idea is that for Christians especially, education is not only about intellectual development—and it definitely should be focused on this—but also the moral and spiritual formation of the student. This is easy to pay lip-service to, but a curriculum that only requires students to regurgitate information is not focused on soulcraft. On one hand, this is not a revolutionary idea, but the language and recent insights are helpful. The articles have proven to be really interesting, insightful, and unexpected. I plan on listening to “Cultivating the Christian Mind: Education as Soulcraft” (42 minutes) by Albert Mohler in the next couple of days while taking notes.

The Life of the Mind: One reason—a beautiful one in my view—for being a Christian is that the Christianity does not require one to choose between faith in God and the life of the mind. If it did, I probably would have fallen away. As God’s creatures, we are designed to learn, think, reflect, and bring these natural, God-given abilities into our faith. We love the Lord our God with all of our “heart and with all your soul and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:37).

J. Machen in Christianity and Liberalism: Several people around me have read the book just named and I have not. It was written in the early 1900s and I am now about 40% of the way through (Kindle). It has been a wonderful read. It is amazes me that 100 years after its publication (1923), it in some ways feels as though it was written yesterday. Here is one quote that I read today: “Christianity is founded upon the Bible. It based upon the Bible both its thinking and its life. Liberalism on the other hand is founded upon the shifting emotions of sinful men.”

La Croix: I love drinking La Croix sparkling waters, but the following are funny!

Daily Post #108

An Old Song That I Can’t Stop Listening To:

Excerpt From the Preface of My New Book on Supererogation: “Ultimately, Evangelical ethics is made more beautiful and the lives of Christian disciples are immensely enriched by the inclusion of supererogation.”

Jesus Christ as Prophet, Priest, and King: While working on an article recently, I came across the 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith. In Chapter 8, paragraphs nine and ten present Christ as prophet, priest, and king. This view of Christ’s three major offices are presented in a succinct manner. Ultimately, these are three significant roles in which Christ as the Head of the church—his body—serves his people. Wayne Grudem also spends an entire chapter in his Systematic Theology discussing these three offices, or roles, which can be found “among the people of Israel in the Old Testament” (Grudem 624). This focus is, at least to my knowledge, mostly emphasized by those in the Reformed tradition. I find it truly helpful.

This is also a quick read on these three offices: Jesus’ Threefold Office as Prophet, Priest, and King

What does it mean for the Pope to speak “ex cathedra”? Click here for a 1–2 minute read; this is definitely one of the major teachings that separate Roman Catholics from Protestants.