Showing posts from March, 2009

The Holiness of God

G od's sovereignty is undoubtedly intertwined with His holiness. What better time to focus on these subjects than at the 2009 Ligonier National Conference held last week in Orlando, FL. This year, the topic of the conference was "The Holiness of God." I attended most of the sessions, and I thought everything that was said was appropriately framed by R.C. Sproul's opening and closing messages. Here are some of the highlights from those two messages - notice how the line between God's holiness and His sovereignty are nearly indistinguishable: Opening Message on The Holiness of God (Session 6) God is Holy. The word "holy" has two meanings. In one sense, "holiness" refers to God's "otherness." He is different than anything created. In another sense, it refers to God's purity, as in, "Be holy as I am Holy." This can only be accomplished in the second sense. We cannot in this life or the next achieve holiness in the fir

God's Sovereignty in Creation

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Genesis 1:1 E ver since I was a child God spoke to me through creation. There has never been a day where I have not been awed by it. I suppose though that could be said for the majority of people whether or not they believe in God. Many fight tooth and nail for a house with a view. Why is that? Because they see beauty in creation. Yet God is revealing Himself to them through creation: For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, because what may be known of God is manifest in them, for God has shown it to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse. Romans 1:18-20 As a Christian this makes perfect sense! That feeling I get when in awe of stunning scenery or a crisp, clear night

The Valley of Baca

Blessed is the man whose strength is in thee; in whose heart are the ways of them. Who passing through the valley of Baca make it a well; the rain also filleth the pools. Psalm 84:5,6 W e are in this world "strangers and pilgrims". A stranger is away from home, but a pilgrim is on the way home. It is on this journey to our heavenly home we will come across the Valley of Baca or as it is also known, Valley of Weeping. The exact location of this valley is unknown. But what is known about it is that it appears to be a dry place. The sun burning above made the valley arid and dry. This Psalm was penned by David in exile as he watched the Israelites make their way to worship at Jerusalem. Three times a year they would make this pilgrimage. I went through my own valley not so long ago which brought the words of Psalm 84 vividly alive to me. It was a place I was brought where I could turn to no one else but the Lord. It is a very lonely place yet also very precious. Many t

The New Creature

A friend and I were discussing the sad condition of many a church today. It is in sad times we live when we cannot even recommend anywhere for the new convert, which happened to be the main topic of our conversation. It is worse still when leaders are content with the way things are. But then our focus was shifted on the new creature and what this life looks like! I believe Horatious Bonar sums up the differences wonderfully. He paints a beautifully balanced description of both. I cannot do it justice so will quote it here for you. Enjoy! “Take yon member of the church. He wears the garb and bears the name of Christ. He is a fair average specimen of a large class. He has the profession of being a Christian yet he is fond of the world! He grasps at its gold. He loves its fashionable gaiety. He reads his novels. He frequents its haunts of amusements. He enjoys its company. He relishes its foolish talking and jesting. Is he a new creature in Christ Jesus? Is it possible that with so muc

Encouraging One Another

I cannot believe how time flies between posts! Getting a quiet moment in my house is rare indeed. I reserve the first ones to be with the Lord but to find another in the day is near impossible. Needless to say I have been struggling to catch up to the next post! I'm so glad I have sympathisers out there who understand what it is like to be a wife and mother, it encourages me to know I'm not alone. Speaking of brethren who encourage brings me to the point of this post, of which I must confess may stray slightly off this month's theme. That being said when we do talk about God it is impossible not to overlap themes sometimes! How amazing it is that the smallest distractions in life can build up so much that your vision becomes very narrow. Let me give you an example from personal experience; This year began with good intentions. I prayed and determined that I would keep up with all my commitments. I even gave some up because of time. But in time, in no time at all really,

Constitutional Peasants

I am not exactly what one would call a Monty Python fan, however, there are certain bits I really enjoy. Perhaps my favorite skit of all time is the "Constitutional Peasant." This scene, taken from Monty Python and the Holy Grail , depicts a smart-aleck peasant who insists on arguing politics with King Arthur, who merely wants to know the answer to a simple question. Listen carefully for some of the objections raised by Dennis, the "Constitutional Peasant," against Arthur's authority: Two things are evident in this scene: 1) Arthur is king; and 2) Dennis doesn't like it. In fact, Dennis comes up with numerous reasons why Arthur's sovereignty does not apply to him, why he thinks Arthur's rule is oppressive and therefore wrong, and how things should be run. Yet Dennis' feelings and opinions do not change the fact that Arthur is king. While it makes for great comedy, there is a ring of truth to this exchange when we consider its similarity to o

Knowing God

L ast month here at Reformed SHEology the theme of the month was Total Depravity. This month as you know our theme is the Sovereignty of God. Yet very sadly however within the church today and in Pink's time; “Few, very few, today really believe in the complete ruin and total depravity of man....there are fewer still who really believe in the absolute sovereignty of God.” - A.W.Pink As a result what is being taught in the pulpits affects our understanding of salvation and even our walk with God. This is exactly what happened to me.... Growing up I believed in God. Deep and firmly rooted within me I knew God existed. However the only place I learnt of God as a child was in school. It was a CofE and we often visited the church we were linked to for the usual celebrated dates. I was in complete awe of the church building. As I sat on those hard wooden pews, tapping the worn prayer cushion on the cold stone floor with my foot, staring at the colourful picture book windows and the sm

So Many Men, So Little Time!

C hoosing a marriage partner is perhaps one of the most important decisions in a person's life. For this reason, many people believe it is best to choose from a wide selection of individuals. With so many millions of people in this world, the task of finding "The One" can seem extremely daunting. There's always that nagging thought that if we just hold out a little longer, something better will come along. When we finally do settle, we have a tendency to look at all the others and ask, "What if I made the wrong choice?" Today, the internet was ablaze with discussion of the American television program, The Bachelor . Like its counterpart The Bachelorette , the show features a man who must choose a wife from a group of 25 women (or a woman who must choose a husband from a group of 25 men). Last night's episode marks with striking accuracy why playing the field is not the best way to find "The One." If you didn't see the show, don't worr

August Rush

T his is one of those movies you'll either love or hate. As always, my hope is you'll love it, as I'd hate for you to sit through something you didn't like for two hours. And as usual, this is a secular film, more humanistic than Christian. Yet I chose it for one main reason: it showed me how incredibly cynical I can be. At first, the cynic in me mocked this movie. For one thing, much of the plot depends on a string of serendipitous coincidences. I found myself saying, "Aw, come on! Like THAT would ever happen!" Then about halfway through the story, it hit me . . . carefully orchestrated events such as these happen all the time! They are child's play to God. As I realized my attitude, my heart changed. I can now say I absolutely love this movie, and with that, I present to you, August Rush , the story of an orphaned musical prodigy who finds his parents with the help of a social worker and a little thing called fate. Our theme of the month is, coincidenta