Let's be reasonable with one another, shall we?

Friday, April 25, 2008

Spurgeon says 'Arbitrarily' and 'Sovereignly' are the same thing

Do you believe that God created man and arbitrarily, sovereignly—it is the same thing—created that man, with no other intention, than that of damning him? Made him, and yet, for no other reason than that of destroying him for ever? Well, if you can believe it, I pity you, that is all I can say: you deserve pity, that you should think so meanly of God, whose mercy endureth for ever. You are quite right when you say the reason why God loves a man, is because God does do so; there is no reason in the man. But do not give the same answer as to why God hates a man. If God deals with any man severely, it is because that man deserves all he gets. In hell there will not be a solitary soul that will say to God, O Lord, thou hast treated me worse than I deserve! But every lost spirit will be made to feel that he has got his deserts, that his destruction lies at his own door and not at the door of God; that God had nothing to do with his condemnation, except as the Judge condemns the criminal, but that he himself brought damnation upon his own head, as the result of his own evil works. Justice is that which damns a man; it is mercy, it is free grace, that saves; sovereignty holds the scale of love; it is justice holds the other scale. Who can put that into the hand of sovereignty? That were to libel God and to dishonour him.

14 Jacob and Esau, Sermon 241, The Spurgeon Archive

Thursday, April 17, 2008

The Tailor's Measurements

A very successful man (I can’t remember who right now) once said that the person who best deals with him is… his tailor. He went on to explain that the reason he appreciated his tailor so much was that every time he dealt with the tailor, the tailor would take his measurements afresh and make his clothes according to his present shape. This man found that some people in his relationship did not keep so current with the changes that he underwent personally. They would treat him from year to year as though he never changed or grew, as though he were exactly the same as he ever was.

We should always keep in mind that people grow and change. Problems need not be perceived as permanent. Particular sins can be put out and overcome. This is especially true of those who have the Problem Solver in their lives, as they walk with Him.

Children are a great example. They give people a new chance every time they meet them. They check each other out anew every time they come together. Each new school year in the primary grades can be a new chance to make friends they didn’t have the year before. They don’t hold grudges and they don’t retain bitterness based on taking up others’ offenses. They take each other’s measurements often and adjust accordingly. We should too! We should hope that trouble between people can be overcome as it rightly should be!

Problems are not permanent.
I can think of a woman that wronged this mother I know. It was a gossip issue regarding her son that happened last year. It was very hurtful to the mother - you know how protective we mothers can be over our children. I haven’t seen the one who perpetrated the wrong since that time. I may not see her for another year or two. Actually, I don’t see either of them very much at all – neither is a close friend. Let’s say I run into the doer of this wrong 2 years from now. Should I hold it against her about the gossip incident? How would I know if the mother forgave her or not? Perhaps they worked it out. I might be ignorant of the details of this relationship between these ladies. For me to scorn this lady just because of something I heard two years ago would be inane. For starters, I never had her explanation of what happened in the first place. More importantly, people change! For all I know she repented, confessed her fault to the mother, they reconciled and they were now friends. Really, when we take up others’ offenses, this is the conundrum that we potentially face.

People change and things often get resolved. Actually, if we try to handle offenses in the Lord’s way, things do often get resolved and it is for the glory of God. May I and mine be mindful of this. Problems are not permanent. God is growing us. Shame on us when we try to fit people with last years’ clothes.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Another Question for Covenant Theology Adherents

This is another question from the friend that emailed us last week:

In Acts 1:9-11, Jesus leaves the earth in bodily form and the two men say, "why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven."

In the Millennium, Jesus Christ comes back to the earth in bodliy form in Revelation 19:11 and following. Some may say, this is a battle in heaven that Jesus Christ fights, but if that were the case, then the two witnesses in Acts 1:9-11 would be lying.

So, when is Acts 1:9-11 fulfilled? To me, it is fulfilled in the 1000 year millinnial reign of Jesus Christ.

I wonder when an Amillennialist believes Acts 1:9-11 is fulfilled?

Now when He had spoken these things, while they watched, He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. 10 And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as He went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel, 11 who also said, “Men of Galilee, why do you stand gazing up into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:9-11 )

Thursday, April 10, 2008

What Do You Make Of This Passage? PART 1

I was reading this chapter yesterday. I was wondering how Covenant Theologians can read this and hold that "Israel" is "the church."

This contains the most gruesome details of the chapter:

10 All the land shall be turned into a plain from Geba to Rimmon south of Jerusalem. Jerusalem shall be raised up and inhabited in her place from Benjamin’s Gate to the place of the First Gate and the Corner Gate, and from the Tower of Hananel to the king’s winepresses. 11 The people shall dwell in it; And no longer shall there be utter destruction, But Jerusalem shall be safely inhabited.
12 And this shall be the plague with which the LORD will strike all the people who fought against Jerusalem:
Their flesh shall dissolve while they stand on their feet,
Their eyes shall dissolve in their sockets,
And their tongues shall dissolve in their mouths. (Zech 14)
I recommend clicking on the link and re-reading the entire thing if you haven't looked at it in a while.

What do you make of this passage?

When people leave the plain meaning of words

Monday, April 07, 2008

Pig's Sentiments

A Question for Covenant Theolgy Adherents

We received an email from a friend of ours. He said he has a question in regards to Covenant Theology. He was wondering if we knew who he could ask about this. So, I volunteered to post the question on my blog since I have many adherents to CT who visit here and others who know a lot about CT in general. So... take a stab at his question if you hold to CT... or if you have any ideas about how CT would answer it.

His question:
Why is it when it comes to the church and end times, Covenant Theology spiritualizes the text, but when it comes to sin, salvation, Jesus Christ, etc., they take a literal approach to the text?


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