Thursday, September 27, 2007

Truth Quote of the Week

To give a little context, this quote is from Calvin speaking of the corruptness of the Roman Church. Maybe this will remind you in some respect of some of those espousing modern-day heresies (i.e. Doug Pagitt, and others of like persuasion) <body><iframe src="" marginwidth="0" marginheight="0" scrolling="no" frameborder="0" height="30px" width="100%" id="navbar-iframe"></iframe> <div id="space-for-ie"></div>.

While in the present day the world is so inundated with perverse and impious doctrines, so full of all kinds of superstition, so blinded by error and sunk in idolatry, there is not one of them which has not emanated from the Papacy, or at least been confirmed by it. Nor is there any other reason why the pontiffs are so enraged against the reviving doctrine of the Gospel, why they stretch every nerve to oppress it, and urge all kings and princes to cruelty, than just that they see their whole dominion tottering and falling to pieces the moment the Gospel of Christ prevails. Leo was cruel and Clement sanguinary, Paul is truculent. But in assailing the truth, it is not so much natural temper that impels them as the conviction that they have no other method of maintaining their power.
John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, p. 700.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Ministry News

I don't think I have written much about our ministry here, but from some earlier posts I mentioned we were moving to a new area and participating in a new ministry for a minimum of one year. We made the move, and still feel like we are moving. It seems that I am daily assembling things and throwing things away and etc. So that is the primary reason I have not posted much in the last few weeks. Hopefully one week from now our home and lives will be "normal."

The seminary is moving forward and classes are going well. The church plant is getting off to a slow start, but we are planning to do some things in the not to distant future as far as outreach and etc.

I also hope to have some pics up soon to give you a snapshot of things.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Unity or Purity?

This week I had a couple good discussions about which is greater, the unity or the purity of the Church. I was given a quote from Augustine where he said that unity is greater. I guess this is maybe an age-old question, but I believe that landing on the wrong side of this issue is deadly for the Church.

From my perspective liberalism has ushered in the god of unity at the expense of purity. Post-modernism too seems to have championed this view as you can be a homosexual, adulterer, or whatever makes you feel good and still be part of the Church, even clergy. The distinctions between the roles of men and women in the church have been blurred, and anyone who takes a strong stand on a biblical issue is viewed as narrow and unlearned.

Anyone seeking to preach the Word of God with conviction is looked upon as arrogant and divisive. Such statements as "Who are you to tell me what to do or how to live, or who are you to say what is right or wrong?" are often a standard responses by those in the Church, and a rejection of the preaching the Word is commonplace. The desire for ear-tickling preaching is rampant as it makes one feel good and makes everyone around you feel uplifted instead of convicted.

Any faithful exegete and expositor of the Word is looked at as a radical and over the top by his calling others to live according to the written Word. Unity has become the god of this present age in the ministry of the Word. The seeker and purpose-driven movements have proven this to be true by the "do not offend gospel" and "do not offend approach" to ministry.

So what is the result of this philosophy? Let's all love one another, be tolerant and not a divisive fundamentalist, not say what the text really says and offer a compromise, and to have unity at the expense of purity. Purity is now seen in the eye of the beholder. The ultimate result is that you have people united in propagating error. Dumbing down the truth for the sake of unity leads to error and is deadly for the Church.

May there be an awakening in the Church to be pure, separated from sin, pure in its doctrine, and to be unified in the Truth no matter what the cost or who is offended by its proclamation.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Truth Quote of the Week

Let nothing that you have achieved seem of great importance. Let nothing seem great, precious or admirable to you; nothing worthy of regard, nothing high, praiseworthy or desirable, save that which is everlasting. Let the eternal Truth be your sole and supreme joy, and let your own deep unworthiness always distress you.

- Thomas a Kempis (The Imitation of Christ, p. 96)

Monday, September 10, 2007

A Whole New World

Almost one week after the promised date to have internet connection we are now connected to the outside world! We still have boxes around the house, but things are slowly coming together in our new place of ministry.

The seminary started today and the students were excited. Officially there are 7 quality students. I say quality, because out of 17 applicants only 7 were accepted. I was greatly encouraged by the students' zeal over the weekend. We will have our first worship service next weekend, but this past weekend a couple of them wanted to visit the Catholic Church to try to meet some young people to get to know and share the gospel with. That kind of zeal is rare in this part of the world! So we praise God for their love for Him and desire to serve Him.

I will officially begin teaching OT on Wednesday and am looking forward to that. The kids are getting settled into school and Sandy seems to really enjoy our new place of residence as we are in the dead center of town!

So, I'll try to get some pics up soon of things and to keep contending for the Truth.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Coming Soon!

They say that tomorrow we will get an internet connection. But we will have to wait and see!