Thursday, March 31, 2011

It's NOT Personal

I love books. I love reading, and I love writing book reviews. Lately, though, I’ve found that I’m hesitant to review theological books because of the intense emotional responses they tend to generate. In truth, I have two written that I have yet to publish because of the popularity of the authors.

Yesterday I quite inadvertently started a FB debate over a link that I posted that showed an interview with Rob Bell in which he claims he’s being misunderstood and slandered in reviews of his book Love Wins. My point in posting the link was only to show that though he claims to be misunderstood and slandered, he says nothing to clear up the misunderstanding.

The main problem that conservative theologians and discernment bloggers are having with Love Wins is that in it he teaches an errant doctrine of hell known as Universal Reconciliation – the view that everyone eventually ends up in heaven. For theologians to claim that that is not a biblical view is not slander, and if that’s not what Bell taught in his book he could clear up the misunderstanding by stating, publicly, his true belief about the eternality of hell. It’s that simple.

But here’s my point:

Evaluating a book in light of Scripture to see if it is true is something that we all must do. We must practice discernment (be Bereans). Disagreeing with an author’s position is not a personal attack against the author, nor does it imply that the author had impure motives. I don’t question that Rob Bell truly loves people and wants to help them. I don’t think he sat down to write his book, let out a sinister laugh and said “Let’s see how many people I can deceive with this one.” Of course not. I believe he sincerely wants everyone to be saved and wants to demonstrate God’s love to the world. But being sincere doesn’t automatically make someone right.

In short, calling Rob Bell a universalist is only slander if he isn’t one. Writing a negative review of a book isn’t a personal attack against an author, nor does it in any way reflect the character or motives of an author, it’s simply an evaluation of the book they wrote. A negative review also does not imply that everything the author ever taught is false, nor does it imply that there are no elements of truth contained in the book. And, most importantly, pointing out false teaching that could lead people astray is not unloving, but shows genuine concern for the spiritual well-being of our brother and sisters in Christ.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Two Great Quotes

1.If obeying God is all that I need to do to make God happy with me & earn His favor & blessings then I don't need a crucified and risen Savior

2.I don't need an authoritative, inerrant, inspired Word of God if all I'm looking for are life tips & principles to make my life better.

-Chris Rosebrough


Monday, March 28, 2011

Bear Fruit to Stand at the Last Day

Let us always remember, that baptism, church-membership, reception of the Lord's Supper, and a diligent use of the outward forms of Christianity, are not sufficient to save our souls. They are leaves, nothing but leaves, and without fruit will add to our condemnation. Like the fig leaves of which Adam and Eve made themselves garments, they will not hide the nakedness of our souls from the eye of an all-seeing God, or give us boldness when we stand before Him at the last day. No! we must bear fruit, or be lost forever. There must be fruit in our hearts and fruit in our lives, the fruit of repentance toward God, faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ, and true holiness in our conversation. Without such fruits as these a profession of Christianity will only sink us lower into hell.

~ J.C. Ryle

Expository Thoughts on the Gospels: Mark, [Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1985], 234. {Mark 11:12-21}

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Saturday Snapshots 3.26.11

This is what we call teaching an old dog new tricks.
Grace got a new bed but it took her awhile to adjust.

She finally decided to try it out, but not without the old one underneath.

Jojo has been a busy boy.

Sucking on his toes is his new favorite passtime.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Thankful Thursday - The Blood that Jesus Shed

(Click here to view the video if reading in an email or rss reader)

The blood that Jesus shed for me
Way back on Calvary
The blood that gives me strength
From day to day
It will never lose its power.

It reaches to the highest mountain
And it flows to the lowest valley
The blood that gives me strength
From day to day
It will never lose its power.

It soothes my doubts and calms my fears
And it dries all my tears
The blood that gives me strength
From day to day
It will never lose its power.

It reaches to the highest mountain
And it flows to the lowest valley
The blood that gives me strength
From day to day
It will never lose its power.

It reaches to the highest mountain
And it flows to the lowest valley
The blood that gives me strength
From day to day
It will never lose
It will never lose
It will never lose its power

Amen! And happy Thankful Thursday

Thank you to Iris for hosting Thankful Thursday this week.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Saturday Snapshots 3.19.11


Thursday, March 17, 2011

Thankful Thursday

With the Lord Jesus Christ nothing is impossible. No stormy passions are so strong; He can tame them. No temper is so rough and violent; He can change it. No conscience is so disturbed; He can speak peace to it and make it calm. No person ever need despair, if they will only bow down their pride, and come as a humbled sinner to Christ. Christ can do miracles upon their heart. No person ever need despair of reaching their journey's end, if they have once committed their soul to Christ's keeping. Christ will carry them through every danger. Christ will make them conqueror over every foe. What if our relatives oppose us? What if our neighbors laugh us to scorn? What if our place be hard? What if our temptations be great? It is all nothing, if Christ is on our side, and we are in the ship with Him. Greater is He that is for us, than all those who are against us.

~ J.C. Ryle

Expository Thoughts on the Gospels: Mark, [Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1985], 85. {Mark 4:35-41}

Thank you to Iris for hosting Thankful Thursday this week.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The Glory of Heaven and the Horror of Hell

Several years ago the Teen (who was then 9) and I moved into a small community where there was a baseball program designed to protect the feelings of the young kids. He had previously played on competitive teams, so we were shocked when baseball started and we discovered how different it was.

In this new town there were no strikeouts. The kids were thrown 10 pitches and if they didn't get in hit by the tenth pitch they brought out a tee. The batter just kept swinging until they finally got a hit. They also didn't keep score so there were no losses.

So yes, the kids were spared the disappointment of a strikeout and the sting of defeat. But they also never experienced they thrill of a hit or the excitement of a win. Without the negative there was no positive.

So what does this have to do with heaven and hell? I will explain.

Earlier today Everyday Mommy, in response to another post about Rob Bell's new book posed this question to her readers:

Redeeming everyone would certainly bring Him glory, would it not?

Or…does God’s righteous wrath also bring Him glory?
Please note - she was NOT teaching universalism but rather posing the question in light of our human tendancy to embrace it.

Reading that post brought to mind the baseball story. If everyone was automatically redeemed, would we appreciate God's mercy? If there were no possibility of hell, would we see the glory of heaven?

I think the Apostle Paul answers that question for us in Romans 9:

22What if God, desiring to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction, 23in order to make known the riches of his glory for vessels of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory— 24even us whom he has called, not from the Jews only but also from the Gentiles?

Without the negative there is no positive. God cannot have mercy if there is no wrath. There is no redemption if there is no damnation. There is no glory of heaven without the horror of hell.

Not sure if you will go to heaven? Please take a few minutes to hear the gospel.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Having {free} Fun with Pinta

If you like the idea of being able to edit photos but don't like the pricetag of Photoshop, Pinta might be for you.
I tried it last night and loved it. It wasn't hard to figure out how to use and did all of the basc functions that I wanted. For free. I like free.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Saturday Snapshots 3.12.11

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Homemade Baby Wipes

I just love our homemade baby wipes. Jojo gets diaper rash from regular wipes; even the sensitive kind.

You will need:

1 roll VIVA paper towels (they are the most cloth-like), cut in half
2 Tbsp  baby oil
  1/2 Tbsp baby wash
2 drops Tea tree oil
1-1/2 cup boiled water
an air tight container to store them in

First, boil 1and 1/2 cup of water. This will kill anything that might end up growing on your wipes.

While the water is boiling cut the roll of paper towels in half. I have found that a ceramic knife works best for this. I got mine at IKEA for $40 and I love it. If you don't have one, a good chef's knife will do, but it was much harder for me to cut that way.
I pull out the cardboard center so it won't waste any of the mixture.

Once the water has boiled for a few minutes, remove from heat and add 2 tbsp baby oil, 1/2 tbsp baby wash and 2 drops tea tree oil. Mix lightly.

Put the half roll of paper towels in the container (save the other half for the next batch) and slowly pour the mixture over the top. Cover immediately to trap the steam in the container.

The wipes are ready when they have cooled.

These are soft, sturdy, and inexpensive.

The tea tree oil can be a little expensive ($7) but it will last a long time since you are only using 2 drops. The tea tree oil is a natural disinfectant and will keep your wipes from growing mold. It also gives them a nice fresh scent.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

8 Symptoms of False Doctrine by JC Ryle

Many things combine to make the present inroad of false doctrine peculiarly dangerous.

1. There is an undeniable zeal in some of the teachers of error: their “earnestness” makes many think they must be right.

2. There is a great appearance of learning and theological knowledge: many fancy that such clever and intellectual men must surely be safe guides.

3. There is a general tendency to free thought and free inquiry in these latter days: many like to prove their independence of judgment, by believing novelties.

4. There is a wide-spread desire to appear charitable and liberal-minded: many seem half ashamed of saying that anybody can be in the wrong.

5. There is a quantity of half-truth taught by the modern false teachers: they are incessantly using. Scriptural terms and phrases in an unscriptural sense.

6. There is a morbid craving in the public mind for a more sensuous, ceremonial, sensational, showy worship: men are impatient of inward, invisible heart-work.

7. There is a silly readiness in every direction to believe everybody who talks cleverly, lovingly and earnestly, and a determination to forget that Satan often masquerades himself “as an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14).

8. There is a wide-spread “gullibility” among professing Christians: every heretic who tells his story plausibly is sure to be believed, and everybody who doubts him is called a persecutor and a narrow-minded man.

All these things are peculiar symptoms of our times. I defy any observing person to deny them. They tend to make the assaults of false doctrine in our day peculiarly dangerous. They make it more than ever needful to cry aloud, “Do not be carried away!”

~ J.C. Ryle

Warnings to the Churches, “Divers and Strange Doctrines”, [Carlisle, PA: Banner of Truth, 1967], 76, 77.


Saturday, March 5, 2011

Saturday Snapshots 3.5.11



He had his big toe in his mouth right before I took this.
If I could have just snapped it one second sooner....

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Menu Planning

I've never been an organized menu-planner. I used to stroll through the grocery store and pick out things that I think I might want to make, and then decide each afternoon what to make for dinner.

That just doesn't work with a baby in the house. Often times Mr K does the grocery shopping now, so I need to make him a list. In addition, Josef is often getting a little fussy by late afternoon and he just doesn't do well with having to sit while I make supper and then sit through supper too.

I found this great tablet at Half Price Books a few weeks ago and decided to put it to use.

I love this! By planning out the next week I can make a grocery list so that I will have exactly what I need for the next week, eliminating trips to the market for one needed ingredient and reducing waste from things not used. Because I have a plan, I know ahead of time what to take out of the freezer (we buy our meat bulk from a local butcher shop once or twice a year, so this is not included in the grocery list). Since this a tablet and not a part of a weekly planner, I can tear of the page and stick it on the fridge.

I have also been doing as much meal prep as I can in the morning, so we have a quiet and happy baby during dinnertime. Crock pot meals and make ahead-recipes (like the hot dish and manicotti) are great.

How do you manage meal planning?

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