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Carson on Worship Via Challies March 31, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Links, Quotes.
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Joe,

I think you will enjoy this quote from Don Carson on worship that I read over at Challies’ website.

In particular I like this part:

“If you wish to deepen the worship of the people of God, above all deepen their grasp of his ineffable majesty in his person and in all his works.”

Enjoy the rest of it,

Larry

A Few Links March 31, 2007

Posted by Joe in Links.
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Lar,

I’m chilling today.  You might say that I did so yesterday as well, I suppose, but hey, I was working!  Anyhow, I linked to this post by Justin Taylor at our Sinners Raising Saints blog and figured I would do the same here.  The topic:  family worship–one that is dear to my heart.

Second, I wanted to link to a few of Albert Mohler’s posts throughout the week, but after reviewing them, I just figured I would encourage everyone to simply go to his blog and look through this week’s post.  Everything he says is good!  Check it out.

Catch you later brother,

Joe

Saturday Morning Prayer March 31, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Prayer.
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“Hot indignation seizes me because of the wicked, who forsake Your law.” (Psalm 119:53)

Grant us, O God, a holy hatred of all that belittles You and is contrary to Your holy law.  Forgive us for the times when we pay money to entertain and amuse ourselves with that which out to make us grieve.  Instead of feeling hot indignation, we laugh at the glorification of sin and the rejection of Your authority.  Grant us to love You in such a way that we would hate all that opposes You.  “Let love be genuine, abhorring what is evil…” (Romans 12:9, literal translation).  Satisfy us with the riches of Your Son’s glory, so that we would not seek to be satisfied in that which belittles You.

Larry

The Negatives of the Gospel March 30, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Quotes.
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I like this quote from Martyn Lloyd-Jones:

People say, ‘Do not be negative; let us be positive; let us just preach the simple gospel’. But the Bible is full of negatives, full of warnings, ever showing us these terrible possibilities. If you find in yourself a dislike of the warnings of the Scripture and of this negative teaching, it is obvious that you have been duped by the wiles of the devil. You have not realized the situation in which you are placed.

Larry

Song of the Day March 30, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Quotes.
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Joe,

I am actually working on two messages today: one for the men’s breakfast tomorrow morning and one for Sunday night on the Sermon on the Mount. That means I’m going to have to rely on some quotes/song lyrics to keep the blog rolling today. I hope to write some on your post about the ‘Gospel-reflecting face’ this afternoon, but I can’t be sure if I’ll have time.

So here are the lyrics to a song by Fernando Ortega called ‘Sing to Jesus’. It has been a favorite of mine lately:

Come and see, look on this mystery
The Lord of the Universe, nailed to a tree
Christ our God, spilling His Holy blood
Bowing in anguish, His sacred head

Sing to Jesus, Lord of our shame
Lord of our sinful hearts.
He is our great Redeemer.
Sing to Jesus, Honor His name.
Sing of His faithfulness, pouring His life out unto death

Come you weary and He will give you rest
Come you who mourn, lay on His breast
Christ who died, risen in Paradise
Giver of mercy, Giver of Life

Sing to Jesus His is the throne
Now and forever,
He is the King of Heaven.
Sing to Jesus, we are His own.
Now and forever sing for the love our God has shown.

Sing to Jesus, Lord of our shame
Lord of our sinful hearts.
He is our great Redeemer.
Sing to Jesus, Honor His name.

Sing to Jesus His is the throne
Now and forever,
He is the King of Heaven.
Sing to Jesus, we are His own.
Now and forever sing for the love our God has shown.

Friday Morning Prayer March 30, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Prayer.
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33 Teach me, O Lord, the way of your statutes;
and I will keep it to the end.
34 Give me understanding, that I may keep your law
and observe it with my whole heart.
35 Lead me in the path of your commandments,
for I delight in it.
36 Incline my heart to your testimonies,
and not to selfish gain!
37 Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things;
and give me life in your ways.
38 Confirm to your servant your promise,
that you may be feared.
39 Turn away the reproach that I dread,
for your rules are good.
40 Behold, I long for your precepts;
in your righteousness give me life!

Psalm 119:33-40

Lose a Leg, Gain Life March 29, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Prayer.
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Joe,

I had good intentions of writing some more on the second quote from Living the Cross-Centered Life, but it’s just not going to happen today! I started today on my preparation to preach another message on Jesus’ words in Matthew 5:27-30. Here’s my opening illustration, from the Minneapolis Star Tribune:

On July 20, 1993, Donald Wyman was clearing land near Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania, as part of his work for a mining company. In the process, a tree rolled onto his shin causing a severe break and pinning Wyman to the ground. He cried for help for an hour, but no one came. He concluded that the only way to save his life would be to cut off his leg. So he made a tourniquet out of his shoe string and tightened it with a wrench. Then he took out his pocket knife and cut through the skin, muscle, and bone just below the knee and freed himself from the tree. He crawled thirty yards to a bulldozer, drove a quarter-mile to his truck, then maneuvered the standard transmission with his good leg and a hand until he reached a farmer’s house one-and-a-half miles away, with his leg bleeding profusely. Farmer John Huber Jr. helped him to a hospital.

Wyman cut off a leg to preserve his life; that is what we must do in the war against lust (and every other sin):

29If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell.”

Seeking to get violent with my remaining corruption,

Larry

 

Worshiping through Thought March 29, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Random Musings.
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Joe,

You put me in a bind, brother, because that was some good stuff you just laid out from Proverbs, and I want to talk some more about that. But I think that first I’ll add some more to our discussion from the quotes from Mahaney’s Living the Cross-Centered Life, and return to your thoughts from Proverbs tomorrow, Lord willing.

Anyway, yesterday you gave me your thoughts on this quote: “[On the Cross, Jesus] is being made to experience the full fury of the wrath of God — the intense, righteous hatred of God for sin, a wrath that has been stored up beginning with Adam’s sin and extending to all of your sin and mine, and to all the sin to the end of this world’s history.”

You said you felt that it was the last part, “and to all the sin to the end of this world’s history” that presented a problem. And I think I agree. I would love to talk with CJ about this, because as you pointed out, I believe that his understanding of the atonement is something I would agree with. I know that Mahaney esteems highly what are often called ‘The doctrines of grace.’ Perhaps we’re both just not tracking with him about his meaning in this quote.

I have to admit, I hesitated to write my first post about this subject the other day, for fear that we might take an absolutely glorious subject like the atonement and diminish the wonder of it by getting ‘nit-picky’ about this small thing. I mean, what a staggering work it was on the Cross that Christ accomplished, to bear the wrath of His Father for all the sins of every believer that has ever or will ever live. To bear the eternal, conscious torment of millions of people in six hours on the Cross; what a Savior we have! So I hate to diminish that marvelous work by talking about this little issue about the last few words of what is otherwise an awesome theological truth.

Having said that, I wrote what I wrote knowing full-well the danger that we might be perceived as nit-picking, and I decided to write anyway. Because I believe God is greatly honored when we seek, in a spirit of humility, to stretch our understanding of these marvelous truths. I believe that the one who says, ‘I don’t care about learning all that Jesus accomplished on the Cross; that is irrelevant. I know he died for my sins, and that’s all I need to know,’ the one who says that is, I fear, belittling the value of the atonement in a serious way. Isn’t it belittling to Christ and His glorious saving work to say to Him that we aren’t interested in probing the awesome depths of glory and understanding them more and more, with a view toward loving Him more and more. And yet in the Church today, that is just what countless professing Christians say, explicitly and implicitly.

Let us press on to know the Lord, and all His marvelous deeds. To exalt having a perfect definition of the atonement over cherishing the value of the atonement is an insult to the Lord; but to persist in indifference toward knowing the riches of what happened at the Cross is also an insult to His beauty. Let’s strive to not make either of those two mistakes.

I’ll try to get to that second Mahaney quote later today, but just felt like I wanted to clarify that!

Larry

A Gospel-Reflecting Face March 29, 2007

Posted by Joe in Scripture Meditation.
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Lar,

I’m looking forward to hearing more from you regarding those Mahaney quotes.  It is good to linger there a bit.   However, I had a few thoughts this morning during my reading of Proverbs (just a few!).  Here was one I wanted to share.

Proverbs 15:13 says, “A glad heart makes a cheerful face, but by sorrow of heart the spirit is crushed.”

After reading this verse, I wrote two questions in my notebook:  Do our faces bear witness to the joy of the Lord?  Do they bear witness to gospel reality?

These are vital questions to ask aren’t they?  For there is a natural, God-ordained connection between our inner man and external response.  And I do think that ‘response’ is the right word there.  Our external facial expressions or use of hands or whatever are indications of what is going on within.  For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks.  We all know that is true, because Jesus said it.  But do we also realize that out of the overflow of the heart the mouth smiles or frowns or is overly serious or gloomy?  I think we should.

I have said this numerous times, but it bears repeating:  Christians should be the happiest people in the world.  And this happiness of heart should lead to a cheerful face.  I think we should be smiling quite consistently.  Now, I am not talking about some shallow, superficial, everything-is-great ‘happiness.’  That isn’t happiness.  That is ignorance.  No.  I am talking about a gospel-entranced, Jesus died in my place so that I through His poverty might become rich sort of happiness.  I am talking about a happiness that is accompanied by tears for the lost and the hurting.  I’m talking about a happiness that flows from the reality that we are never getting what we deserve.   That’s right.  I am never getting what I deserve.  Always and forever in Christ Jesus, things are exceedingly wonderful!  They are always better than they should be.  Never should there be a moment when I am not marveling at God’s amazing grace!

So that is how I have lived today.  I have been all smiles.  Now seriously, did you believe that?  I hope not.  Who do you think I am, Jesus?  No way.  I thought about this verse and then went to practice.  Needless to say, my face wasn’t reflecting gospel joy.  But why?  Were my cheeks tired?  Come on.  My heart lost sight of the glorious gospel.  I somehow forgot that no matter how weary I might be, I am always doing better than I should be doing.  I simply failed to marvel as I always should.

So now I return to the gospel again and repent of my unbelieving heart.  I go to the cross, confess my pride and arrogance and impatience and anger and unbelief–and place my hope in what Jesus has done in my place.  And then I reckon it finished.  I believe what the Bible has said.  I thank the Lord that there is forgiveness so that He might be feared and that my heart might be filled with joy–and my face full of smiles.  Then I go to battle again, conscious of the fact that it will never end until I am welcomed into glory.  Then and only then will I live with that unceasing joy that might well lead to an unceasing cheerful face!

Enough for now brother.  Let us ask ourselves:  do our bodily expressions reflect gospel reality?

Seeking Him with you,

Joe

Thursday Morning Prayer March 29, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Prayer.
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“Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him.” (John 5:23)

Help us, Father, to be manifestly Christ-centered in all our talking about You.  There are many people in this pluralistic day who speak of ‘God’, but far fewer who contend that Christ is the only way to You.  But Jesus Himself said that if we do not honor Him, then we do not honor You.  If we are not worshipers of Christ, then we are idolaters.  To the modern mind this is offensive.  But in the Biblical landscape, it is inescapable truth: “I am the way and the truth and the life; no one comes to the Father except through me.”  Forbid that we should keep silent about Christ, who is the “radiance of the Father’s glory and the exact imprint of His nature.”  In all our witnessing, let us make it crystal clear that it is the Lord Jesus Christ whom we worship, who demands all worship.  Turn the hearts of all to honor the Son, that You might be glorified.

Larry

A Sobering Story March 28, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Links.
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Joe,

No more madness from Mahaney today, but this story that I read on Challies’ website is a sobering one, and one with a great spiritual lesson. Let us hold on lightly to the things of this world.

Larry

More Madness from Mahaney March 28, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Links.
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Joe,

Again, that’s one of my fine journalism major headlines for this post! And no, this madness is not about any theological viewpoints; rather, it’s about the madness of college basketball.  But first, thanks for your thoughts on the Mahaney quote in your last post. I hope to write a bit more on that later, and clarify the context of the second quote, as you asked about.

But this post is totally unrelated to our discussion about those quotes from Living the Cross-Centered Life. I came across this post today on how the Mahaney family regards the viewing of and playing of sports. I thought it was especially relevant in light of the Final Four being played this weekend; in fact, Mahaney wrote this last year right before the Tournament began.

In addition to the thought-provoking spiritual content, notice two things about the article:

1. CJ’s grumbling that George Mason should not have made the tournament; I seem to remember them making the Final Four? Good thing CJ’s spiritual discernment is better than his bracket discernment!

2. Joe, you really should have practiced CJ’s last bullet point a little more carefully while you were at PSU. Don’t worry, I’ll forgive you!

Seriously, there is great wisdom in these words from CJ, especially for parents with children who are frequent competitors in athletics.

Seeking to do all things (even watching hoops) to the glory of God,

Larry

Mahaney Quotes March 28, 2007

Posted by Joe in Random Musings.
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Lar,

Good stuff yesterday.  I’m thankful that you are a critical reader brother and  I am with you on that book.  I’m not sure I will be reading it quarterly, but maybe twice a year.  Ok.  Probably once.  But I’m still with you!  We just can’t hear the message of that book enough.  It is too vital.  And we are much too quick to forget it.

Not only that, but we are very slow to see all of life in light of the gospel.  We fail to realize that the Lord does a sanctifying work through this message.  For what I have been seeing a great deal lately is that it is only as we come to understand how God relates to us through Christ that we can rightly relate to everything in the world (including Hisprovidence ).  That’s huge.  If I don’t understand justification by faith alone, I can’t raise my kids right.  I can’t walk with you through life right.  I can’t respond rightly when I sin–or when I do well.  On and on I could go.  We are desperate for a greater understanding of what God has done for us in Jesus and how God now relates to us through Jesus.  It’s a lifelong pursuit, but let’s pursue it hard!

That being said, I’ll take up the two quotes you mentioned yesterday.  Here is the first.

“[On the Cross, Jesus] is being made to experience the full fury of the wrath of God — the intense, righteous hatred of God for sin, a wrath that has been stored up beginning with Adam’s sin and extending to all of your sin and mine, and to all the sin to the end of this world’s history.” 

From my lowly vantage point, the quote is precise except for the words after the final comma.  I’m thinking you are with me here.  Here comes the dreaded ‘L’!  Limited atonement.  Did Jesus suffer for every sin?  I think the biblical answer is clearly no.  Maybe He did in some sense (like the common grace sense), but not in the sense that He paid the penalty for every sin committed in the whole of human history.  With that I definitely disagree, for as you noted, if Jesus did pay that penalty, no one would ever go to hell.

That being said, I would mention two things.  First, I am quite sure that Mahaney believes this truth.  Second, this goes to show how difficult it is to describe what Jesus suffered through without becoming ‘nit-picky’ about doctrinal precision.   This is especially true about ‘limited atonement’ or what is better called, ‘particular redemption.’  Jesus died for the sins of those who would believe in His name–that is, for His elect.  Any other conviction leads to the inevitable logical conclusion that no one should suffer in hell, because Jesus paid for all their sins–including their unbelief and rejection of Him.

I think this is why ‘particular redemption’ is the least emphasized doctrine of grace in the New Testament.  That is accurate right?  This is a doctrine that is clear enough, but it is not something that is ‘particularely’ dwelt upon in the NT.  Jesus died for His sheep.  Yes.  That is very true (John 10).  But we are most definitely called to call everyone to repentance.  And when we stand in front of a group of people, we should be able to say (and I do), “Jesus died in your place.  Turn to Him all the ends of the earth.”  This can be said, I believe, without our being unfaithful.

Ok, with all that said, I would summarize by saying that I disagree with Mahaney’s final words in that quote.  That’s difficult to do, b/c I respect him so much, but it is true.  However, I do think the quote serves to point to the issue I raised above.

As for the second quote, that will have to wait.  One thing I do want to know about that quote, however, is the context.  For it seems to me that he is emphasizing the fact that no one will ever experience the fullness of God’s wrath like that, because Jesus suffered it on behalf of billions!  So that statement is true.  Sure, people suffer for their sins in hell, but they do not suffer for the sins of billions in hell.  Ok, enough for now.  I hope this helps.  It is good to discuss!

Basking in His merciful redemption of me,

Joe

Wednesday Morning Prayer March 28, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Prayer.
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14 In the way of your testimonies I delight
as much as in all riches. (Psalm 119:14)

Only You, Lord, can produce this kind of delight in the riches of Your Word.  Our minds may tell us, on the basis of Your own testimony, that Your Word is more precious than much fine gold and sweeter than the drippings from the honeycomb (Psalm 19).  But in order for us to truly experience this sweetness, we need You to do a miracle in our hearts.  Come, Lord, and do that miracle today.  Wean us off the pleasures of this world by using Your testimonies to plant in us a satisfaction in the superior pleasures of knowing and enjoying You.  Faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word of Christ.  So open our eyes, Lord, to see the riches of Your Word as more valuable than all else that this world can give.

Larry

Packer on the Centrality of the Cross March 27, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Quotes.
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Joe,

Here’s another good quote from Living the Cross-Centered Life, this one from J.I. Packer:

“The traveler through the Bible landscape misses his way as soon as he loses sight of the hill called Calvary.”

The whole of God’s Word is intended to lead us to marvel at and cherish the Cross. If we do not understand the Cross, we can understand nothing that the Bible speaks of.

Larry

Mahaney and the Atonement March 27, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Quotes, Random Musings.
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Joe,

I’m not sure if you plan to get back to me on that Christianity Today article I posted yesterday. In the meantime, I hope I don’t lay too much on you but I thought I would send some recent musings of mine your way.

As I mentioned a couple of days ago, I just finished re-reading C.J. Mahaney’s Living the Cross-Centered Life. What a great book! This is actually the third time I have read it, and upon this reading I decided to make this book a quarterly read. I don’t mean to elevate the book too highly, so as to exalt it above Scripture by any means. But the book’s length, readability, vividness and practicality make this book’s message one that I believe I need to be inundated with on a regular basis. Even in the Church, we are not Gospel-saturated, and that is a great shame. So I’ve already written in my day planner for July 1st, ‘Read Living the Cross Centered Life’.

That said, I thought I would post a couple of quotes from a chapter in the book that I was confused by. Either I am confused, or Mahaney did not choose his words carefully enough, or I may just disagree with him. I thought it would be good for the two of us to kick around these two quotes so I can try to come to a better understanding of what Mahaney is saying. They relate to his understanding of what Jesus accomplished on the Cross.

On page 91, Mahaney writes, “[On the Cross, Jesus] is being made to experience the full fury of the wrath of God — the intense, righteous hatred of God for sin, a wrath that has been stored up beginning with Adam’s sin and extending to all of your sin and mine, and to all the sin to the end of this world’s history.”

Here’s what I am questioning: is Mahaney saying that on the Cross Jesus bore God’s wrath against all the sin that has ever been committed in the world’s history? If so, then it seems like he is including the sins of unbelievers as well. But if Jesus bore the wrath of all the sin in the history of the world (for both believers and unbelievers), then it’s my understanding that no one would go to hell. Because the only thing that will send them to hell is unforgiven sin. What do you think? Am I mis-reading Mahaney, or does he seem to be suggesting that all of God’s wrath against human sin was absorbed by Jesus on the Cross?

Had it just been this one quote, I may have suspected that I simply was not tracking with Mahaney’s thought process. But on the next page Mahaney says something else that I’m unclear about: “[Jesus is] experiencing on the Cross what no one in human history ever has or ever will experience. He’s receiving what you and I should be receiving — His Father’s full and furious wrath.”

Again, I am unclear of what Mahaney means when he says that on the Cross Jesus experienced what no one in human history ever has or ever will experience. Jesus bore God’s wrath on the Cross to rescue people from the pouring out of that wrath on them in hell. So my understanding from this quote is that Mahaney is saying that no one in history (believer or unbeliever) will ever receive God’s full and furious wrath. But isn’t that exactly what all unbelievers will receive in hell?

Obviously I know that C.J. Mahaney is not a universalist, believing that all people go to heaven. He believes in hell and knows that all who do not receive Christ will go there. So help me, brother, to understand what he may mean by these quotes. What am I not understanding? Or do you thinking that I am understanding him, and I simply disagree with him on what Jesus accomplished on the Cross. Because I do not believe that Jesus bore the punishment for all the sins committed in the history of the world; rather, I believe that He bore the punishment of all the sins of those who believe on the Cross…leaving the unbelieving to justly bear God’s wrath against their sin in hell.

These are incredibly weighty matters, ones that need more engagement than mere intellectual understanding. But I am writing this first to try to come to a correct understanding of these things, so that my emotions can be shaped by Truth.

And let me closing by stressing again that even if I disagree with Mahaney about this point, I love this book and would not hesitate to recommend it. Nevertheless, because I do love it so much, I strongly desire to understand what he means on every page.

Curious to hear back from you on all this,

Larry

Paul Tripp on Psalm 51 March 27, 2007

Posted by Joe in Links.
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Lar,

Rather than making a long post about now, I am going to read through some of Paul Tripp’s posts on Psalm 51.  I saw that Justin Taylor recommended it on his blog a bit back and I’m thinking I need to read them.  Of course, I could always use some meditations on the Lord’s mercy, but as of the late, the gospel is becoming increasingly precious to me.  I hope I won’t be the only one reading!

Until later,

Joe

Tuesday Morning Prayer March 27, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Prayer.
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The Lord is on my side; I will not fear.
What can man do to me?
The Lord is on my side as my helper;
I shall look in triumph on those who hate me. (Psalm 118:6-7)

Oh Lord, grant us faith to believe this magnificent truth: that You are for us.  How often we allow guilt and condemnation to hinder our fellowship with You, believing that You are angry with us and that we can never please You.  In the flesh, we cannot please You; we are condemned.  But Christ offered Himself as our substitute, so that Your wrath could be removed from us and we could approach You boldly, with confidence.  If not for the shed blood of Christ, we could never say that You are on our side.  But because of the atonement You have made at the Cross, we can live daily in the confidence that the Creator of the universe is on our side.  You are our helper.  Grant that we would marvel at the Cross this day, Lord, which has turned us from Your enemy to Your beloved.

Larry

Hearing God’s Voice March 26, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Links.
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Joe,

Michelle and I are headed out for an early dinner, but I thought I would post a quick one before we take off.

This article appeared in the last issue of Christianity Today, and it has caused a bit of a buzz because John Piper wrote a response to it that was less than flattering of this anonymous article’s “angle” on hearing God’s voice.  I don’t believe either of us has posted Piper’s response, so I thought it would be best to give this article a read first and then evaluate it and Piper’s response.  For now, let’s check this one out and give me some thoughts on it tomorrow, especially if you haven’t read Piper’s article yet.

Talk to you tomorrow,

Larry

Beware of Nice Heretics March 26, 2007

Posted by larrylaz in Quotes.
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Joe,

I have to say I got a chuckle out of your ‘Trinity Joke’ that you posted earlier this morning. But in seriousness, it made me remember that, while I am certainly passionate that God’s people press on to know Him in increasing clarity, there comes a time when His truth is meant to drop us to our faces in hushed worship rather than wax eloquently about unsearchable mysteries.

That said, let me stress again that I long for God’s people to press on to know Him more and more. I think in our day the bigger danger in the Church is not waxing eloquently about complex issues, but rather apathetic resignation that God’s truth cannot be discerned by ‘ordinary’ people. Such a mentality is I believe an insult to the Lord, and a violation of the greatest commandment to love God with all our heart, soul, strength and mind.

When we throw our hands up and act like we simply can’t understand God’s revelation of Himself, the inevitable result is the abandonment of orthodox Christian teaching. This is a subtle process which the average person will probably not notice, and serves to remind me how important it is to have shepherds who have a discerning eye and can distinguish truth from error (Acts 20:28ff). For those who dispense error appear often times to be great men of God. Writing about Arius, the 4th century heretic who denied the deity of Jesus Christ, Parker Williamson writes:

“Here was a bright, energetic, attractive fellow, the kind of citizen whom any Rotary Club would welcome. Singing sea chanties in dockside pubs and teaching Bible stories to the Wednesday night faithful, this was an immensely popular man. His story reminds us that heresy does not bludgeon us into belief. We are seduced.”

At the end of Romans, Paul wrote, “I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them.” We must beware of those who would lead us astray from the sound, apostolic teaching that has been preserved for us in Holy Scripture. For those who lead God’s people astray will not bludgeon us into heresy; they will seduce us. Be cautious not to evaluate a teacher by whether he is nice, or funny, or passionate. Be like the Bereans (Acts 17:11), who examined everything they were taught in light of the whole counsel of God.

Longing for the kind of unity that arises out of doctrinal purity and love for the Truth,

Larry