“In my early years I assiduously followed this threefold course: first, I read through the entire Bible three times a year (eight chapters in the Old Testament, and two in the New Testament daily.) I steadily persevered in this for ten years, in order to familiarize myself with its contents, which can only be done by consecutive reading. Second, I studied a portion of the Bible each week, concentrating for ten minutes (or more) each day on the same passage, pondering the order of it, the connection between each statement, seeking a definition of the important terms in it, looking up all the marginal references, being on the look-out for its typical significance. Third, I meditated on one verse each day; writing it out on a slip of paper in the morning, memorizing it, consulting it at odd moments through the day; pondering separately each word in it, asking God to open for me its spiritual meaning and to write it on my heart. The verse was my food for that day, meditation standing to reading as mastication does to eating.
The more some such method as the above be followed out, the more shall we be able to say, ‘thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path’ [Ps 119:105].”
Dangerous Calling – A new book out by Paul Tripp. You can read the introduction and first chapter in PDF format by clicking on the link.
Hospitality and the Great Commission – In a progressively post-Christian society, the importance of hospitality as an evangelistic asset is growing rapidly. Increasingly, the most strategic turf on which to engage the unbelieving with the good news of Jesus may be the turf of our own homes.
A Thirst for Hermeneutics – Would you let a surgeon, two weeks out of medical school, perform brain surgery? Our Pastors need to be properly trained in the art of Biblical Interpretation (Hermeneutics) because they are dealing with eternal issues, not just temporal ones.
“The purest joy in the world is joy in Christ Jesus. When the Spirit is poured down, his people get very near and clear views of the Lord Jesus. They eat his flesh and drink his blood. They come to a personal cleaving to the Lord. They taste that the Lord is gracious. His blood and righteousness appear infinitely perfect, full and free to their soul. They sit under his shadow with great delight. . . . They lean on the Beloved. They find infinite strength in him for the use of their soul — grace for grace — all they can need in any hour of trial and suffering to the very end.” – Robert Murray M’Cheyne
8 Rules for Growing in Godliness – Our growth in godliness is a grace from God, derived from our union with Jesus, and is a work of the Holy Spirit, and yet we are active throughout in both killing sin and living unto righteousness.
The knowledge that we all have the same creator and maker admonishes us not to harbor contempt for God’s work, whether in ourselves or in another, by asking “Why did he make it like this?” Thus we read in Isaiah, “Woe to anyone who, like an earthen potsherd, argues with its maker. Shall the clay say to the potter, ‘What are you making?’” And in Proverbs, “Whoever disregards the needy insults their maker.” And so this faith, wherein we believe that we have been created by God, brings about these three things in our hearts: First, that with all our hearts we depend in all things upon God our creator. Second, that each of us be contented with our circumstances–indeed, that we embrace them with thanksgiving, given that God our creator has placed us in them. Third, that none of us view our neighbor’s circumstances with contempt, however vile and miserable they be, lest we thereby cast aspersions upon our common creator. – Wolfgang Musculus
Is God’s Love Unconditional? – Where in Scripture do we find this notion of the unconditional love of God? If God’s love is absolutely unconditional, why do we tell people that they have to repent and have faith in order to be saved?
I Feel Sorry For God – It’s sort of darkly-funny that a people who are themselves so unable, unwilling to keep the Law can be also so intent on making sure God is judging other people.
I was scrolling through my list of blog rolls this morning and came across this from John MacArthur and was incredibly blessed by his affirmation of what I have come to understand. The original can be found here.
While we understand that sanctification is the work of the Holy Spirit in the lives of God’s people through His Word, it’s not an entirely passive process for believers. Spiritual maturity doesn’t come through osmosis—it takes careful discipline and hard work, even in the basics like how we study Scripture.
Last week we established the vital role of God’s Word in our spiritual growth, and the pattern by which it transforms our lives. But that process hinges on how we approach the Bible and seek to understand it. Your spiritual growth can be stalled or even derailed by uninformed faith and bad hermeneutics.
You’ve probably seen firsthand the willy-nilly way some people approach Scripture. Looking for “a word from the Lord,” some play a game of Bible roulette, flipping at random through their Bibles, looking for something that seems applicable to whatever trial or need they’re facing. When they find something that vaguely applies to their situation, they treat it as a special revelation from the Lord just for them.
But hunting and pecking through Scripture won’t produce mature believers. In fact, it’s far more likely to hinder your spiritual growth than to build up your faith and understanding.
You might have heard the story of a man who was wrestling with a major decision and decided to close his eyes, open Continue reading →