Saturday, 29 September 2007

An Unfinished Symphony (III)

More thoughts on the loss of our granddaughter, November, 1999.

Sometimes, I think, it is as if God has two wills; an active will and a passive, or permissive will. If we believe in the sovereignty of God, we must accept that nothing happens outside of His will. Sometimes, though, can we say that He doesn’t actively cause things to happen, but He allows them? We don’t know why, but in faith we must assume that He has a good reason.

I cannot fathom how someone would cope with this, not having the hope that we have, not having a Christian faith. I thank God that there is a Heaven. Equally, I thank Him for giving me the assurance that there is such a place, and that Kadence is there. Some things exist whether we know them or not, and whether or not we believe in them, but is nice to know for sure, isn’t it? God, in His grace, has not only given us eternal life through Jesus Christ; He has given us the knowledge and assurance of that life. We don’t have to go through this life in suspense, wondering what lies ahead in the next. What a wonderful and thoughtful thing for Him to do; not only to provide for us, His children, not impersonally, from a distance (as the rather silly song said), but to give us that personal comfort and assurance as well.

I thank God for Jesus. It is only because of him and what he has done that it is possible for Kadence to be in Heaven and for us to join her there some day.

Will we recognize Kadence when we get to Heaven? I don’t know. It may be that she will recognize us, rather than the other way around. A pastor friend told us this: “Let it be your prayer that she be the second in line to greet you when you get there.”

Take Care

Friday, 28 September 2007

Thursday, 27 September 2007

An Unfinished Symphony II (A Grandfather's further thoughts on sudden infant death (SIDS)

Jen had come in after teaching her dance class. As she did every night, she went into the baby’s room to check on her. As she did every night she touched Kadence gently. It was to check to make sure she was breathing, although of course she never expected she wouldn’t be. It had become an almost mechanical motion: the touch, the smile, the kiss. But this time was different. It took a split-second to realize that it was so. It took a split-second for the thought to register, “No, she’s not breathing!” Still not comprehending, she rocked her baby gently with her hand. Kadence felt lifeless, like putty. Picking her up, Jen saw that she was blue. It was a feeling of utter shock and despair and unbelief. A groan escaped her which was not a scream, not a cry for help; just a groan of realization of something which was too unthinkable to be realized. Jen told me later that as she held her baby she knew it wasn’t her. It was her tiny little body, but Kadence wasn’t there.

Here’s a question I wonder if atheists can answer: What is the difference between a living body and a dead one? Certainly it is not chemical or physical. Every atom and molecule that was there an instant before death is still there an instant after, so what’s the difference? If there is no God, if man does not have a soul, what is the difference? It is a question I don’t suppose many atheists have considered at any great length. It is a question for which I can’t imagine them having a very satisfactory answer. Satisfactory even for themselves.

Take Care

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

More Thoughts on Atonement

It was mentioned the other night that I hold a kind of, “general atonement” view. Now I don’t take that as all bad, if it is used in the sense that Jesus died for the “sins of the whole world” (John 1:29), or if he is the saviour of the whole world ( 1 John 2:2, 1 John 4:14), but I still insist that my view of atonement truly is that of a “limited” atonement.

Six point Calvinists have taken atonement beyond, “limited” to “particular,” and that is where I get off the Calvinist bus. “Particular atonement” holds that Jesus died only for a finite number of specific individuals whom God has decided will be saved, thereby specifically excluding from any possibility of salvation, all the rest. Now, “particular” may be what has always been meant by, “limited,” but I see a difference.

I do, in fact, hold very much to what I believe is a “limited atonement” position, in that I believe that Jesus died only for his elect. His atoning sacrifice on the cross did not accomplish the forgiveness of sins for everyone in the world, but only for those who come to faith in him; only for those whom he brings into his elect body.

I believe that God extends the invitation to seek him to any and all people in the world. The fact that not all do is explained by John 3:19.
“This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil”.

But I still believe that any who truly seek will find Him, as He has promised many times in both the Old and New Testaments of His word, and that to any who sincerely and humbly knock, the door will be opened.

But it is God who opens the door. We do not open it ourselves. We do not force our way in, or even invite ourselves in. The door is not opened according to our will or decision. And when God does open the door, He pulls us through it, irresistably, aside from any cooperation or permission on our part. Salvation is all of God, at His sole prerogative and in His own time.

I post this knowing that perhaps not many will see it, but I plead with anyone who does to show me if and how this is unbiblical in any way. If I am wrong in my thinking, the Christian thing to do is to set me right.

Take Care

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Do Not Conform Any Longer to the Pattern of This World

A new blog (new to me) which I've just found, Magic Statistics and which I thoroughly enjoy reading, refers (through This Post) to Ted Byfield's column in the Calgary Sun regarding the precipitous decline in religious faith in Canada. Here is a notable quote from Byfield's column:
The United Church, created in the 1920s by the union of the Methodists, Congregationalists and most Presbyterians, sought to combine the socialistic reforms of the social gospel with the spiritual message of evangelicalism... When the government itself legislated the social gospel, (and the church largely abandoned evangelicalism, JK) the church was left with no message at all.

I quote this, not out of spite or malice, but merely wistful remembrance of what was once the church of my youth. I also ache for the Anglican Church of Canada, to which I still feel an attachment and which I fear is heading the same direction.

Another quote that came to mind was from another of my posts, Here

Nothing has proven to be more irrelevant than the liberal lust for relevance.

In short, what is the point of any religion that doesn’t claim we need a saviour because we are alright as we are? What’s wrong with a religion that has an “I’m OK, You’re OK” attitude? Well, the point is that no one any longer needs it. Churches that conform to the pattern of this world ( Romans 12:2 NIV) are bound to be homogenized into it, like some great wonderful church-world milkshake.

If we’re all OK, if God loves us just the way we are and doesn’t require us to change, why not just sleep in on Sunday morning?

Take Care

Monday, 24 September 2007

An Unfinished Symphony (a Grandfather's Thoughts on Sudden Infant Death (SIDS)

We lost our first granddaughter to crib death in November of 1999. As that anniversary approaches, I intend to post a series of thoughts I wrote in the midst of the grief of the time. The reason for the title, An Unfinished Symphony, will become apparent in my final post.

We still think of Kadence, and for my daughter Jen and son-in-law Jon. Both her birthday and the anniversary of her leaving are still difficult days. These are deeply personal thoughts, but I reprint them here in the hope that they may be a blessing to someone who stumbles across them.

Kadence Jennifer Groff, June 27 - November 15, 1999.

Monday November 15, 1999
It was nine o’clock in the evening and I was alone in the house when I got the call. It was my son-in-law, Jon. He sounded worried, but the full impact of what the call was about did not strike me.
“Can you meet us at the University Hospital emergency department,” he asked.
“OK,” I replied, “What’s up?”
“It’s Kadence. She’s not breathing. The paramedics are here.”
“Alright.” I said, and started to stammer some questions, but I must have begun to realize that it was urgent, so I cut myself off and said only, “I’m on my way.”
The first thing I did was say what a pastor of mine once called an “arrow prayer”, asking for God’s protection over her. Then I started to scribble a note to my wife, Eva, on the back of an envelope, not knowing quite what to say, and in too much of a hurry to try to tell the whole story. After a couple of false starts, thankfully, I heard her coming in the door. I spluttered out something about having to go right away, that there was something wrong with Kadence, and said, without hesitating to try to explain, “Let’s go!” Once we were in the truck and on our way, I told her what little I knew.

It was about a half-hour drive from our house to the University of Alberta Hospital. The further we drove, the more I became aware of a knot of fear and worry in my stomach. As we pulled up to the emergency entrance, I dropped her off and then went to find a parking spot. When I reached the emergency department after parking the truck, the receptionist directed me to a small room over to one side. I entered. Everyone was in tears. “They’ve lost Kadence,” they said.

I had prayed often that God would watch over my granddaughter, to protect her and set his angels around her to keep her from harm. I can only accept now that He has done just that. We may never know, this side of eternity, from what harm He has saved her. We can only trust that, in His perfect knowledge and sovereignty, He has.

Take Care

Saturday, 22 September 2007

Witherington Takes on Piper

As always, I am not current in my blogging. This story is probably old hat now, considering it started last Wedsnesday. If you want current, you should go Here or Here.

But I read this at the time and I thought Dr Witherington was over-reacting somewhat to Dr Piper. The immediate context was the silly story of the US Congressman who is suing God, but Dr Witherington seems to be critical of Dr Piper for This commentary regarding the collapse of the bridge in Minneapolis.

Witherington wonders if Piper has ever heard of God’s permissive will. Granted, Piper is probably more “Calvinist” than Witherington but I can’t imagine anyone but the most heartless determinist (or perhaps the late Jerry Falwell ;) ) holding the opinion that God actually reached out and caused that bridge to collapse at the exact moment it did. Yes, as commenter, “Joe” said,

“If God could have prevented the bridge from collapsing, and he didn't, then he still ordained it in some sense. The fact that God brings evil to pass through secondary causes doesn't undo the fact that he is still sovereign over Satan, sin, and suffering.”

Personally, I would have used the word, “allowed” rather than, “ordained,” but the fact remains that this, and any other disaster for that matter, occurs only within God’s will.

The example is made of Job, where God allows Satan to test him severely. Again, as Joe says,

"Satan clearly is the one afflicting Job. He leaves God's presence and Job's camels and horses get stolen and his children are killed. But isn't it significant that God sets the boundaries of what Satan can do? 'You can take his stuff and his family, but you can't touch the man.' And then, when Satan returns for round 2, God once again says, 'You can touch his body, but you can't kill him'."

Yet even Job, though he doesn’t follow his wife’s counsel and curse God, he doesn't ascribe his suffering ultimately to Satan. He acknowledges the Lord’s hand in everything. "The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away. Blessed be the name of the LORD." (Job 1:21, ESV) "Shall we receive good from God, and shall we not receive evil?" (2:10)

Another commenter, Alex Chediak, says,

“Yes, Satan is a murder who wants to wreak havoc. But he is on a leash whose length is established by God…”

God has the power to prevent such things. Sometimes He doesn’t. Therefore it must be His will that these things, when they do happen, happen. Why? We don’t know, or indeed sometimes can’t know, but in the end we must acknowledge His sovereignty and trust in His goodness.

And I still think that Witherington's lambasting of Piper was just a little "over the top."

Take Care

Thursday, 20 September 2007

There But For....?

I have waited a couple of weeks to make this post. I wasn't sure quite how to handle these two interrelated stories. It would be easy to gloat and have a kind of "I told you so" attitude, but I don't think that would be proper or profitable. It would be easy to point the finger in a sort of "holier than thou" sense, but when I examine myself, I find myself unqualified to do even that. I post these in the prayer that I not be judgemental, at least not in the sense that I can claim to be any better a person than the subject of this post. Even the strongest Christian is one weak moment away from stumbling. Even the Apostle Paul writes,
"I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God's law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!" (Romans 7:15-25 NIV)

The first story comes shortly after last summer's national Synod of the Anglican Church of Canada. The article is entitled, "Clergy Test Rulings on Same-Sex Blessings". Here is a quote from this article:

In Victoria, the rector of St. Saviour’s church, Rev. Antonio Osorio, invited lesbian and gay couples to be blessed in his parish during the Sunday service July 1. Four couples showed up to be blessed as a group and as couples, said Mr. Osorio.

“These were people in committed, faithful and long-term relationships,” he said in an interview. “They were there as friends, as members of our community and as volunteers of our church.”

Mr. Osorio said he did not think that he violated any church law since General Synod approved the resolution stating that same-sex blessings were “not in conflict” with the church’s core doctrine (dogma.). “I’m not committing any heresy,” he said, adding that it was not the first time that he performed such blessings.

The entire story is here

The second piece comes again from the Anglican Journal. It is dated Sept 17, 2007 and refers to the same Rev Antonio Osorio. I will quote only the headline, but the entire story can be read Here:

B.C. Priest Resigns After Admitting (Sexual) Misconduct


The one thought that comes to my mind, and I say it in sincere humility and recognition of my own weaknesses, is that once one takes the first step away from God's revealed will, perhaps the second comes that much easier.

Take Care

Wednesday, 19 September 2007

My Blog Is Not As Wholesome As I Thought

Dating

I have received a PG rating. the reason? Because the word "dead" occurs twice somewhere in it and the word, "death" occurs once. Oops, I guess I now have to add one more occurence for each after this post. I hope that doesn't move me into an "R" rating.

Take Care

Monday, 17 September 2007

An Atheist "Man O' The Cloth"

Dr Albert Mohler posts today on what is, to me, an ironically humorous subject. It seems that Harvard University now has a “humanist chaplain”, Eric Epstein; a sort of spiritual counselor to unbelievers, I suppose. Dr Mohler rightly wonders,

“The fascinating aspect of this story is the fact that humanists would need chaplains. Why do atheists and agnostics need clergy? The reason is quite simple -- they can't get around the big questions.”

Epstein apparently prefers to call himself a humanist rather than an atheist, even though that is what he is, because humanism is a more positive term. He defines humanism as a "philosophy of life without supernaturalism that affirms our ability and responsibility to lead ethical lives of personal fulfillment aspiring to the greater good of humanity."

The thing is that atheists mire themselves in an untenable logical conundrum. As I have posted before, the never ask enough questions regarding the moral or logical implications of their position. They stop short. They convince themselves that if they ignore the further questions they can pretend they aren’t there. They are whistling past the graveyard. Leaving aside for now the question of what is ‘ethical’ and what basis they have for thinking there is any such thing, lets consider human feelings and emotions.

The question(s) here, as I might see them are these:

Q. Why do we need a chaplain for atheists at a funeral?
A. To address their grief.

Q. What is grief? Indeed what are feelings or emotions of any kind, other than purely natural circuits of electrons running around in the brain in certain predetermined and unalterable patterns according to fixed and unalterable natural laws of physics and releasing certain chemicals that make us feel certain ways?
A. Even atheists have emotions that need to be ministered to.

Q. Even if you think you can explain emotions in this natural way, what then is consciousness. What is it within us that makes us conscious of these emotions? Please explain it in purely natural terms.
A. We don’t know yet, but some day we’re sure that science will one day provide the answer.

Q. Such faith.

Atheists, to be consistent, must believe that life is nothing more than electricity and chemicals. The trouble is, when it comes right down to it, most must secretly believe there really is more to it than this.

Take Care

Sunday, 16 September 2007

Because of What He Has Done

I was sitting in church today, before the service had started, listening to the sound checks, somewhat oblivious to people arriving and the pre-service conversations taking place around me. I happened to turn to Genesis chapter 26. Here God reminds Isaac that he will receive the blessings and promises God made to Abraham "...because Abraham obeyed me and kept my requirements..." (v 5)

In other words, it no longer depended on Isaac and whether he kept the requirements, the commands, the decrees and the laws. The deal was already sealed, so to speak, because the requirements had already been met, in the past, by someone other than Isaac himself.

And so it is for us. For us to have a relationship with God does not depend upon our keeping any requirements, commands, decrees or laws. They have already been kept on our behalf, by Jesus Christ, in his life and in his death. The conditions have already been met. And they were met before we were even aware of it. "While we were still sinners, Christ died for us." (Romans 5:8b NIV)

It was a wonderful realization for me, when I first came to faith, that there was nothing I needed to do to earn God's approval. Indeed, there was nothing I could do. My new-found relationship with God did not depend on any performance of mine for its permanence. I have written in my own testimony of the verses that were the beginning of this realization, but I will repeat them here.
But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. 22This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. (Rom 3:21,22a)
It's all from God. Jesus was given by God (John 3:16); the plan of salvation whereby we receive the righteousness of Christ counted as if it were ours (Philippians 3:9) through his sacrifice (1 John 4:10)is a gift from God; and even our faith is His gift to us Ephesiand 2:8. And because it is all from Him, so too can we rely on His promises that we will never be lost. 1 Peter 1:3-5), (John 10:28)

We are His forever. He will never let us out of His hand.

Take Care

Saturday, 15 September 2007

"This man welcomes sinners and eats with them."

Luke 15 verse 2 is a favourite verse quoted for those pushing for the legitimizing of same-sex marriages and the blessing of them.

Spurgeon's evening devotion from September 13 (linked to by Pyromaniacs) is on this very passage. Here is part of what he writes:
"This Man receiveth sinners"; not, however, that they may remain sinners, but he receives them that he may pardon their sins, justify their persons, cleanse their hearts by his purifying word, preserve their souls by the indwelling of the Holy Ghost, and enable them to serve him, to show forth his praise, and to have communion with him...
The thing is that not once in Scripture is there an example of Jesus accepting the sinful behaviour of those with whom he associated. In fact, these people attempting to have Jesus bless such relationships don't quote (or perhaps don't even read) far enough. In the passage in question, Jesus goes on to tell of the one lost sheep who is found again. He says,
"...there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent." (7b, emphasis mine)
The whole point of Jesus associating with sinners was to bring them to repentance, not to bless their behaviour.

Take Care

On The Other Hand

Here is a church that sees otherwise. They have indeed, apparently, invented a god of their own choosing who accepts what the old God didn't.

Interesting times loom ahead in the Edmonton diocese of the ACC in the wake of Bishop Matthews impending retirement.

take Care

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Mark Larratt-Smith on SSB's

Here is a wonderful opinion piece by an orthodox Anglican on some of the issues facing the Anglican Church today, including, of course, the most public one of the blessing of same-sex unions. He writes on the,
attempt to redefine the nature of Almighty God, in order to make Him fit with our contemporary society’s view on a single social issue.In this it does not seem to me to be any different from any other attempt to create a tame god who will comfortably reflect and endorse our own sense of what is appropriate. It is just another example of making one of the gods of stone or wood that the Old Testament prophets denounced. Its implicit message is that, if I don’t agree with God’s version of reality, I will reconstruct a god who is more congenial with my own view of the world. As I have stated above, such a god is not worth worshipping and certainly not the source of any hope to rely upon.
A further quote:
The advantage of a home-made god is that expectations are low. We don’t really expect a human created god to solve the problems of the world. But then, if we are foolish enough to create such a god, we are likely foolish enough, against all the evidence of history, to insist that we can solve all those problems ourselves.
The entire piece can be seen Here

Take Care

Saturday, 8 September 2007

A Few Maudlin Ramblings

I drive often, as many Edsonites do, the trans Canada highway into Edmonton and back. For long stretches of the way the CN railway tracks parallel the highway. Often one passes a train, travelling in either the same or the opposite direction (I guess it has to be one or the other, doesn’t it?), carrying grain, or sulphur, or coal, or mixed freight, from some people in some place to other people in another place. Sometimes one sees a long train of open cars that are empty, indicating that they have done their work, they have delivered their cargo, and are returning for more. Some of these trains seem almost to be miles long, with hundreds of cars. It takes me back to the days of my youth and childhood, growing up in a village in the Niagara Peninsula of southern Ontario.

My friend Craig (yes, the eventual owner of the Camaro), who I met when I had just turned five and he was four, lived on a fifteen acre farm beside the main railway line that ran the length of the peninsula, from Buffalo NY past Hamilton and around to Toronto. The ‘tracks’ played a central role in much of our play in those days, from childhood even into adolescence. From the earliest days there was ‘treasure’ to be found on those tracks; railway spikes, ‘S-shaped’ brads from the ends of the ties, rocks with which to send messages to one another by tapping on the tracks. A boy could send a secret code to another with his ear to the steel all the way at the other end of the farm.

Craig’s farm grew all kinds of fruit; apples, peaches, pears, plums and mostly several varieties of grapes; red, blue and white. Every summer throughout the nineteen-fifties, multiple samples of all these fruits were worn by train cars that chanced to pass by Craig’s farm when young boys with eager arms and a ready supply of such ammunition happened to be playing nearby. Slingshots fashioned from coat hangers and rubber bands turned hard unripened grapes into lethal (and painful) weapons to be used against both those unfortunate trains and each other, in their absence. But yes, we all survived childhood with all our eyes, contrary to warnings of every ‘fifties mother.

Fall is upon us, here in west central Alberta. The leaves are turning and the morning air is damp and chill. As I find myself, not yet perhaps in the twilight, but certainly the autumn of my own life, those long days of those endless summers seem more and more to intrude upon my consciousness.

I remember those days when a young boy would dash out the door in the morning and not be seen by his parents until evening, often tossing back the message as the screen door slammed behind him, “I’ll see you when I get home!”

Mine is now the senior generation of our family. All our grandparents, parents, aunts and uncles are gone. As a Christian believer, confident in my own faith and whose parents, I am convinced, died in the Lord, I can look forward to the day when, to quote the hymn, “…the faith shall be sight,”* and the fulfillment of that childhood phrase will be realized in eternity, “I’ll see you when I get home.”

Take Care
* It is Well With My Soul

Friday, 7 September 2007

This subject was raised on Tim Challies’ blog. He quotes the dedication from Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life:

“This book is dedicated to you. Before you were born, God planned this moment in your life. It is no accident that you are holding this book. God longs for you to discover the life he created you to live—here on earth, and forever in eternity.”
He then wonders, if I may interpret what I think is his point, if this is assuming too much, so to speak. Perhaps those who ascribe every little detail of every life to the will of God are being somewhat presumptious.

I think the best we can say in any particular circumstance is that we don’t know whether it is God’s deliberate rovidence or not. Sometimes it might be. Esther 4:14b says
“…And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this?”
So sometimes God may orchestrate events or circumstances in such a way as to bring about that which He intends to accomplish. But just because God can do something doesn’t mean He always does. Just because He has the ability doesn’t mean He has the obligation. It’s all part of His sovereignty.

I have said in the past that I believe God has two wills. Whether He has two wills, or merely two aspects of His one will is, I suppose, a matter of semantics. But I believe He does have what I call His active will (that which He intends or ordains) and His permissive will (that which He allows or permits).

To say that God is in control and that nothing happens without His prior knowledge is quite correct. But we must not confuse His foreknowledge with His active will. Just because God knows we will do something does not necessarily mean He actively wills us to do it. Because He is sovereign, He permits us to do it.

To me, the simplest example is our sin; the things we do that are wrong and which, as often as not, we do even knowing they are wrong. God knows we will sin, but surely He does not will it. Such things fall under His permissive will; He allows them. But for Him to will it would make Him the author of sin, and that He is not.

Take Care

Thursday, 6 September 2007

The Faith Once For All Delivered to the Saints

We studied the book of Jude study last night. Just before I left for Church I read the letters to the editor of the Anglican Journal. What a connection I saw!

One of the phrases in use lately in the Anglican Church, by those on the “orthodox” side, has been from the very book we studied.

…contend for the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints. (verse 3b)


Our Pastor noted that the word “contend” carries the sense of a continuing action; in other words, keep on contending, for the faith. The faith spoken of in this case is not our personal faith, but the Christian faith, the Gospel message. I was struck by the contrast in tenses between the continuous “contending” for the faith, and the past-tense, already delivered of it,

The faith has already been delivered. A historical fact cannot be changed. Oh, revisionists may try to spin it, but basically, what has happened has happened. The Christian faith is based upon the historical facts of Christ’s birth, life, teachings, crucifixion and resurrection. These have all happened.

But Jude continues, warning that,

…certain men whose condemnation was written about long ago have secretly slipped in among you. They are godless men, who change the grace of our God into a license for immorality and deny Jesus Christ our only Sovereign and Lord. (verse 4)

This is indeed what is happening right now as certain liberal churches try to adapt to the times. The irony is that in their quest for relevance, they become, themselves, irrelevant. The more a religious organization tries to become, chameleon-like, like the society around it, the less point there is in its existence. The more “inclusive” (certainly the latest buzzword in liberal circles within the Canadian Anglican Church) the more they merely blend into the surrounding landscape. In trying to please everyone they will eventually please no one.

The letters to the editor mentioned above contained such phrases as, “…the Jesus who ate with sinners…” and, “I know where Jesus would have stood and I believe he would have been thoroughly ashamed of the Synod’s decision.” Oh really? Can anyone point to a time when Jesus tolerated sinful behaviour? Yes, Jesus associated with sinners and society’s outcasts, but every time we hear of such an association, lives were changed. Lives like Zaccheus, the woman at the well, and the woman taken in adultery to whom Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you,” but “go and sin no more.”

The churches that are attractive to anyone seeking the truth are those who demonstrate that they are standing on a firm footing and offering an unchanging message of hope to those who will accept it. They may not attract everyone, but at least those they do will know where they stand.

Take Care

Monday, 3 September 2007

Interesting Sign of the Times?

Or a sign of things to come?

The second most popular name for new-born baby boys in the UK is Mohammad.

I guess time will tell.

Take Care