"Ignorance of Scripture is ignorance of Christ." - Jerome

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

iTunes Podcasts: Sermons

I subscribe to quite a few free podcasts on iTunes. iTunes will download audio files as they become available and then you can listen to them on an ipod or MP3 player. I have a few I would recommend if you are getting started. I don't have time to listen to all of these, but I do listen when the topic or text seems interesting. We'll start with Sermons:


First Presbyterian in Jackson. (Ligon Duncan and Derek Thomas)

First Prebyterian in Columbia. (Sinclair Ferguson and Ian Murray)

Bethlehem Baptist (John Piper)

Other good ones I don't get to that often:

Mars Hill in Seattle (Mark Driscoll)

Now if only Tim Keller would get on iTunes!!!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Owen on Christ

I have recently read John Owen's Communion with the Triune God. There are several rich sections within the work. One in particular, I believe is trying to answer the question: Why do I not feel a love for Christ?:

"Compare a little what you aim at, or what you do, with what you have already heard of Jesus Christ: if anything you design be like to him, if anything you desire be equal to him, let him be rejected as one that has neither form nor comeliness in him; but if, indeed, all your ways be but vanity and vexation of spirit, in comparison of him, why do you spend your 'money for that which is not bread, and your labor for that which satisfies not?' [Isa. 55:2]

...consider, I pray, what are all your beloveds to this Beloved? What have you gotten by them? Let us see peace, quietness, assurance of everlasting blessedness that they have given you. Their paths are crooked paths - whoever goes in them shall not know peace. Behold here a fit object for your choicest affections - one in whom you may find rest to your souls - one in whom there is nothing that will grieve and trouble you to eternity...

Pray, study him a little; you love him not, because you know him not."

After reading the book, I could recommend few better places to study Christ a little than John Owen's Communion with the Triune God.

Friday, December 26, 2008

What did the Incarnation do?

"The achievements of the Saviour, resulting from His becoming man, are of such kind and number, that if one should wish to enumerate them, he may be compared to men who gaze at the expanse of the sea and wish to count its waves. For as one cannot take in the whole of the waves with his eyes, for those which are coming on baffle the sense of him that attempts it; so for him that would take in all the achievements of Christ in the body, it is impossible to take in the whole, even by reckoning them up, as those which go beyond his thought are more than those he thinks he has taken in.

Better is it, then, not to aim at speaking of the whole, where one cannot do justice even to a part, but, after mentioning one more, to leave the whole for you to marvel at. For all alike are marvellous, and wherever a man turns his glance, he may behold on that side the divinity of the Word, and be struck with exceeding great awe."

Athanasius, On the Incarnation of the Word. ch 54, 4-5 (free version here, buy here)

Thursday, December 25, 2008

The Glory of Christmas

ALMIGHTY God, who hast given us thy only-begotten Son to take our nature upon him, and as at this time to be born of a pure virgin; Grant that we being regenerate, and made thy children by adoption and grace, may daily be renewed by thy Holy Spirit; through the same our Lord Jesus Christ, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the same Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.

-Book of Common Prayer 1928

Sunday, December 21, 2008

4th Sunday in Advent

O LORD, raise up, we pray thee, thy power, and come among us, and with great might succour us; that whereas, through our sins and wickedness, we are sore let and hindered in running the race that is set before us, thy bountiful grace and mercy may speedily help and deliver us; through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom, with thee and the Holy Ghost, be honour and glory, world without end. Amen.

-Book of Common Prayer 1928

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Link: Together for the Gospel

I thought I would share a link to a blog and conference "Together for the Gospel." The group is made up of Baptists (like Al Mohler of Southern Baptist Theological) and Presbyterians (like Ligon Duncan of First Presbyterian in Jackson Mississippi). Their last conference had the likes of John Piper, Mark Dever and R.C. Sproul. Check them out.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

3rd Sunday in Advent

O LORD Jesus Christ, who at thy first coming didst send thy messenger to prepare thy way before thee; Grant that the ministers and stewards of thy mysteries may likewise so prepare and make ready thy way, by turning the hearts of the disobedient to the wisdom of the just, that at thy second coming to judge the world we may be found an acceptable people in thy sight, who livest and reignest with the Father and the Holy Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.

-Book of Common Prayer 1928

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Sunday, December 07, 2008

2nd Sunday in Advent

BLESSED Lord, who hast caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning; Grant that we may in such wise hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that by patience and comfort of thy holy Word, we may embrace, and ever hold fast, the blessed hope of everlasting life, which thou hast given us in our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

-Book of Common Prayer 1928

Saturday, December 06, 2008

December 6: Saint Nicholas Day

Today is the day that the real Saint Nicholas is remembered. I just came across this great story about the real Saint Nicholas (the inspiration of our current American Santa Clause). Here's the story:

"In AD 325 Emperor Constantine convened the Council of Nicaea, the very first ecumenical council. More than 300 bishops came from all over the Christian world to debate the nature of the Holy Trinity. It was one of the early church's most intense theological questions. Arius, from Egypt, was teaching that Jesus the Son was not equal to God the Father. Arius forcefully argued his position at length. The bishops listened respectfully. As Arius vigorously continued, Nicholas became more and more agitated. Finally, he could no longer bear what he believed was essential being attacked. The outraged Nicholas got up, crossed the room, and slapped Arius across the face!"

Yes, Saint Nicholas, Santa, hit Arius in the face. I now have a greater appreciation for Santa Clause as a heretic-beater. When I have children, I will tell them this story with pride, and let them know that Christmas is a time to put Christological heretics in their place!