On August 2, 2007, Charles Simic was selected to be the 15th Poet Laureate Consultant in Poetry to the Library of Congress. His poem, “Full of Pictures” may have a word to fathers who study theology—or anything else for that matter.
Full of Pictures
Father studied theology through the mail
And this was exam time.
Mother knitted. I sat quietly with a book
Full of pictures. Night fell.
My hands grew cold touching the faces
Of dead kings and queens.
There was a black raincoat
in the upstairs bedroom
Swaying from the ceiling,
But what was it doing there?
Mother's long needles made quick crosses.
They were black
To help you stay encouraged to pray for huge Christ-exalting movements of God, here’s what we read this morning. Each day, as part of our family devotions, Noël and Talitha and I read the daily reading from the Global Prayer Digest. Today we read this:
"David, what do you think about this quote from Ahmad Al Qataani which was posted on the Al Jazeera web site regarding Africa? It says, 'In every hour, 667 Muslims convert to Christianity. Every day, 16,000 Muslims convert to Christianity. Ever year, six million Muslims convert to Christianity.'" Paul, a Christian worker among Muslims, was asking a fellow worker about the report. David replied, "It is true that there are more Mus…
Would you not love to hear the angel Gabriel say to you, “You are greatly loved”? Three times this happened to Daniel.
- “At the beginning of your pleas for mercy a word went out, and I have come to tell it to you, for you are greatly loved” (Dan. 9:23)
- “O Daniel, man greatly loved, understand the words that I speak to you, and stand upright, for now I have been sent to you” (Dan. 10:11)
- “And he said, ‘O man greatly loved, fear not, peace be with you; be strong and of good courage” (Dan. 10:19).
Take heart. If you have faith in Jesus, God himself says to you, “You are greatly loved.”
We were by nature children of wrath, like the r…
Sometimes Romans 9:3 is put forward as the Achilles heel of Christian Hedonism. Is a Christian Hedonist willing to be damned for those he loves?
Christian Hedonism says that you ought to aim at maximizing your eternal joy in God in everything you do—even if it means selling all you have and giving it to the poor, being persecuted for righteousness’ sake, returning good for evil with no hope of reward in this life, and finally dying as a nameless stranger in some foreign land.
In Romans 9:3, Paul expresses his willingness to be damned for the sake of his Jewish loved ones: “I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen accor…
Recently Ben Witherington reacted to Thomas Schreiner's forthcoming New Testament Theology by suggesting it calls into question "God's essential moral character." He cites Schreiner's point that the most basic theme of the New Testament is, "God magnifying himself through Jesus Christ by means of the Holy Spirit."
He concludes with,
I suppose we should not be surprised that in a culture and age of narcissism, we would recreate God in our own self-centered image, but it is surprising when we find orthodox Christians, and even careful scholars doing this.
This is really astonishing for five reasons:
- The explicit biblical textual foundation for Sc…
Happy Thanksgiving from the “lead pastors” of Bethlehem and our wives.
The four pastors met yesterday for about two hours and ended that meeting with overflowing expressions of thanks for our families and the family called Bethlehem and for the glorious work of Christ in saving us.
This photo, as you can see, was taken at Old Country Buffet where we feel absolutely dashing.
These are days of strange alliances in evil. That is what evil has always done. Remember how Pilate and Herod were adversaries until their common abuse of Jesus knit them together? “Herod and Pilate became friends with each other that very day, for before this they had been at enmity with each other” (Luke 23:12).
That’s the way it is with the bishop and the atheist. They are united in blasting the power of God and the cross of Christ as putting poor Christians in the pitiful position of permanent gratitude.
Read the rest of the article.
This morning’s Bible reading put me over the edge. It said,
His sons come to honor, and he does not know it;
they are brought low,and he perceives it not.
He feels only the pain of his own body,
and he mourns only for himself.
In other words the day may come when I will feel so much pain that the honors and sorrows of my sons will mean nothing to me. So I think I better act now.
With overflowing admiration for all four of my sons, I want to celebrate the poetry of my eldest, Karsten Luke Piper, who teaches English at Minnesota West Community and Technical College . He will be doing a reading this Sunday evening (November 18, 5 PM) …
I plan to begin a short series of messages on new birth this Sunday. It will take us at least through Christmas, maybe longer. The title of the series will be “You Must Be Born Again” taken verbatim from John 3:7.
We will begin with “What Is Regeneration?” The other messages will deal with: Why is it necessary? How does it happen? What are the evidences that it has happened?