Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Christianity vs. Spirituality

It is by the Word of God, given to the Church, that all religions and all spiritualities are to be judged. The “faith” of the spiritual seeker and the faith of the Christian believer may, in some ways, look alike but, in fact, they are radically different. The one is the upward questing of the human spirit which speaks of human emptiness and uncertainty; the other is the work of God which speaks of his grace and judgment. As authentic as the human questing may be, it is still in biblical terms, unbelief. For the searching is not a search of the one locus in which God has spoken and decisively acted; it is a searching for its own sake, a searching for its own rewards. In religion of a Christian kind, we listen; in spirituality of a contemporary kind, we talk. In religion of a Christian kind, we accept a gift; in spirituality of a contemporary kind, we try to seize God. In the one, we are justified by the righteousness of Christ; in the other, we strive to justify ourselves through ourselves. It is thus that spirituality is the enemy of faith.

-- David Wells, Above All Earthly Pow’rs, pp. 161-162.

Tuesday, January 30, 2007

What I Have Liked Lately

As I emerge from my unintentional hiatus, what better way to appease my few readers than a link post? Since my content has been sparse, I hope you can enjoy some other things from around the web.
  • Kim's blog is one of my favorites, but this post raises a subject that should be discussed more often in our churches. Well done.
  • John's blog is always a thought-provoking read. I have recently given him a link on my sidebar, but in my blogging drought I haven't highlighted this fact in a post. Good work, John - I go back because I wonder "what's next?" Great range of topics.
  • Over at Renewing Your Mind Radio, Dr. Sproul is going through "The Last Days According to Jesus" (start at the message "Crisis in Eschatology"). Sure to raise the hackles of my Dispensational friends, this subject should not be lightly dismissed by thinking Christians. If you choose to listen to the series and find your blood pressure rising, repeat the mantra, "If the plain sense makes good sense, seek no other sense." I think Dr. Sproul is following this advice on Matthew 24.
  • If you don't listen to the White Horse Inn, I would recommend that you give it a try. Start with this wrap up message on Romans. It's a classic.
  • This blog is great, but the writer doesn't update often enough (cough, cough). I think she must live in a hectic household or something.
  • Homeschool hockey (Monday, 1:30-3:30 at the Edson Leisure Centre). No link for this one, but I like it better every week. Today I have sore ribs, a fat lip and a headache from various unintentional bumps, but it sure is fun when I'm on the ice.
That'll do for now. If you're sad you're not on the list, please know that I like you too. I'm just getting ramped up on this blogging business again and I'm out of steam now. Whew.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

The Solid Rock

1. My hope is built on nothing less
Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness.
I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
But wholly lean on Jesus’ name.

Refrain: On Christ, the solid Rock I stand,
All other ground is sinking sand;
All other ground is sinking sand.

2. When darkness veils His lovely face,
I rest on His unchanging grace.
In every high and stormy gale,
My anchor holds within the veil.

3. His oath, His covenant, His blood,
Support me in the whelming flood.
When all around my soul gives way,
He then is all my hope and stay.

4. When He shall come with trumpet sound,
Oh may I then in Him be found.
Dressed in His righteousness alone,
Faultless to stand before the throne.

Edward Mote (1797-1874)
Public Domain

Friday, January 19, 2007

A Post

Hi folks!

Every day I think, "Maybe today I'll do a real post." Hope springs eternal.

Thank you to the people who have commented on the old stuff here. I haven't even had the courtesy to comment on your comments (especially to Christopher all the way from Finland).

I am over my cold, but just keeping up with the busyness of life (and the occasional hockey game) has kept my attention away from this blog.

Speaking of hockey, the Oilers are about on par with Toronto (though in a different conference), so they must be doing rather poorly. Good game last night, though!

My next real post is going to be a personal story of how we started homeschooling.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Late Sunday Hymn

This is not a hymn that I have ever really liked - I haven't given it much thought, actually. However, this week I felt the burden of sermon preparation weighing particularly heavily upon me and this hymn came to mind when I was praying about the responsibility of preaching a difficult text.

I'm close to the end of my Matthew series that I started ages ago. I preached on our Lord in Gethsemane this morning. How can I communicate what Christ went through in that garden? Thus the prayer, "Lord, speak to me that I may speak."

Lord, Speak to Me

1. Lord, speak to me that I may speak
In living echoes of Thy tone;
As Thou hast sought, so let me seek
Thy erring children lost and lone.

2. O lead me, Lord, that I may lead
The wandering and the wavering feet;
O feed me, Lord, that I may feed
Thy hungering ones with manna sweet.

3. O teach me, Lord, that I may teach
The precious things Thou dost impart;
And wing my words, that they may reach
The hidden depths of many a heart.

4. O fill me with Thy fullness, Lord,
Until my very heart o’erflow
In kindling thought and glowing word,
Thy love to tell, Thy praise to show.

5. O use me, Lord, use even me,
Just as Thou wilt, when, and where,
Until Thy blessed face I see,
Thy rest, Thy joy, Thy glory share.

Francis Havergal (1836-1879)

Monday, January 08, 2007

I'll Be Back

Thank you to any faithful readers that have been checking back here for the past week or so. I have been sick - just a cold, but a particularly nasty cold. I was worried that I wouldn't be ready for Sunday, but my head and voice cleared enough so that I could finish preparing and then deliver my sermon.

I hope to be back to semi-regular blogging soon. I need to update my links, too. Not tonight, though. I need to go to bed soon (even though we're listening to the Oilers right now - they can get 'er done without me ... hopefully).

Monday, January 01, 2007

Oilers Fans Can Laugh a Little Too

Taking inspiration from a Leafs fan, my son Josh did a fitting tribute to the Oilers today.

We're still die-hard Oil fans, but their play of late has not been laudable. We don't blame Roloson - he hasn't had a lot of help - but I think this picture is kinda funny. I'm sure our guys will get it together soon.