Quote of the day – Kelly Ling’s “Christian Quote of the Day”


Psalm 18

I will love thee, O Lord, my strength.


Earnestness of Preachers

“I go out to preach with two propositions in mind. First, every person ought to give his life to Christ. Second, whether or not anyone else gives him his life, I will give him mine.”

Jonathan Edwards

About Misplaced Loyalties – From Grain of Wheat blog


Colossians 1:9-13

akjv

For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; 10 that ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; 11 strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness; 12 giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light: 13 who hath delivered us from the power of darkness, and hath translated us into the kingdom of his dear Son. . .


The Christmas Nativity continues to present a ‘baby Jesus’ to the world. This baby does not tell them that they are sinners in need of a saviour, this baby just lies there in a manger of a silent night, this baby is mute, powerless and lied about. This baby is not the truth!

from

Christian Christmas Chaos – The Tale of Two Fathers

by Helen
intro

OK, so this is all very basic Christian teaching so far; we initially belonged to a bad, lying father but then we had our spirit ‘born again’ when we repented of our own sins and were adopted into the Father God’s family.  From that moment, we each decide which Father we will listen to and which Father we will obey but we are aided and strengthened by the Holy Spirit as we abide in Christ and obey His word.

So now you are thinking, yes, but what does all this have to do with Christmas? You’re maybe thinking, I am a very busy person, it’s well into December already and I have presents to buy, food to cook, Christmas tree to get out of storage and decorations to fix up my house, and this blogger needs to get to the point real quick!  OK then, here goes!. . .”

Read more. . .


Bronner’s


 

The season of images – representations of Jesus, part 2


As a Catholic child I loved the large ornate crèche that our parish church always placed in front of Mary’s altar at the beginning of Advent. Around and above it, fir trees stood. We had our own small nativity set at home – its figures were small enough to place by hand in a little stable. 

If the Lord wanted us to worship using things like this, why did Jesus teach us,

23 But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. 24 God  is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” 

John 4

A Nativity Scene isn’t a teaching tool or a seasonal decoration but a focus for our idolatry.

Bronner's Christmas Wonderland

Exodus 32:3-4

So all the people broke off the golden earrings which were in their ears, and brought them to Aaron. And he received the gold from their hand, and he fashioned it with an engraving tool, and made a molded calf.

Then they said, “This is your god, O Israel, that brought you out of the land of Egypt!”


Christmas Series: Are Nativity Sets Biblical III? The Opinion of John Calvin

Pulpit & Pen, News DIVISION

John Calvin:

“. . . We must hold it as a first principle, that as often as any form is assigned to God, his glory is corrupted by an impious lie.” (Institutes, 1.11)

Pulpit & Pen:

“The Reformers weren’t having it. The early church fathers weren’t having it. We not only tolerate these images of Jesus, however, we put them on display.”


The Second Commandment, Westminster, and Images of Christ

Brian Cosby

Westminster’s Rationale

“By creating an image of Jesus (e.g., in a painting or a stained-glass window), a person is inserting his or her own ideas of what Jesus looked like. Because we do not know what he looked like, this image would not be a true image or representation of Christ. Rather, it would simply be an image of a man from the imagination of the artist that he or she has called ‘Jesus.’

“If these images, then, do not truly represent Christ, then they are put in the place of the true Christ. Evoking any sense of worship of that which is not Christ, but rather inserted in the place of Christ, is – by definition – idolatry. If an observer were to gaze upon that image with the intent to worship, by thoughts or emotions, then that observer would be worshipping a man-made image and not the true God-man, Jesus Christ. The same principle would also apply for images of God the Father and God the Holy Spirit.”


Photo credit: Bronner’s


 

8 implications of calling Jesus “Lord” by Jesse Johnson

“It is good to be reminded that ‘Lord’ is more than a title, and more than a name. It reveals the identity of Jesus, and compels a response from us that is more than simply a phrase we say – ie., there is more at stake here than saying ‘Jesus is Lord.’ That phrase implies so much, that when rightly understood it alters our worldview.”

The Battle Cry

image

I recently preached 2 Corinthians 4:5 (“We do not breach ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord”), and in preparation I came across this powerful list of 8 implications of preaching Jesus as Lord. These are from Murray Harris’s New International Greek Testament Commentary (p 332), where he writes:

Whenever worshiping Christians repeat the church’s confession “Jesus is Lord,” they are:

1. Implying that the Christ of faith was none other than the Jesus of history (Acts 2:34–36),

2. acknowledging the deity of Christ (John 20:28; Phil. 2:6, 9–11),

3. admitting the Lord’s personal rights to absolute supremacy in the universe, the church, and individual lives (Acts 10:36; Rom. 10:12; 14:8; 1 Cor. 8:6; Jas. 4:15),

4. affirming the triumph of Christ over death and hostile cosmic powers when God raised him from the dead (Rom. 10:9;

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