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Joe Fleener

Joe Fleener's Public Library

  • We'll never understand or be able to explain our culture without watching the whole drama from the beginning.
  • Again, there are culture-specific applications of these ten principles in the Old Testament, but it's a relatively easy task to extract the principles and apply them to our own day which so much needs objectively true and reliable moral standards to drive away the fog of moral confusion and relativism.
  • The Old Testament paints a dark, dark picture of sin and its awful effects. And yet the Lord, in mercy, came again and again to raise up godly leaders, to revive His church, and to renew and re-create the culture. The darkest days often preceded the brightest dawn. What hope of renewal this grand

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  • I’m in no position to advise these people called Methodists. I forfeited that right when I left. And no one is asking for my advice, anyway. But I want my United Methodist friends to know something important. I did not leave because of your views on sexuality. By the time I left in the early 2000s I didn’t even realize you had been debating sexuality for decades. I left to find the theology of George Whitefield and Howell Harris that converted the Welsh, including my Daniel kin. I left to learn the spiritual disciplines that sustained the Wesleys amid their conflicts with established church leaders and quests to reform British society. I left to find the spiritual zeal that made my grandfather belt out the Methodist hymnal by heart as cancer ravaged his body.

  • Similarly, parents bear the responsibility of teaching and training their children to understand the importance of sexual purity and, before that, the sheer goodness of human sexuality
  • Here we can learn the importance of teaching our children to prioritize the local church, and teaching our children to see the church not only as a place of worship, but a place of love—a place to express love to other Christians.
  • Our children need to know that God created us to work and that there is dignity in all labor

  • After Gerber recovered from the illness which lasted several days, he realized he possessed neither the desire nor qualifications necessary to head into the ministry, though he claims the call to ministry returns to him from time to time—usually after ordering off Taco Bell’s breakfast menu.

  • If you want to know what people really believe, the philosopher Roger Scruton once explained, listen to them pray. It is one thing to ask a person what he believes, but it is another thing to listen to him pray.

  • Most atheists would agree with much of what Enns says about the Bible. I’ll first mention my points of agreement before explaining why we come to opposite conclusions.

  • It was certainly not confused with the worship service, even as adults began attending and there was more mature exposition of Scripture.
  • If we are to continue providing Sunday schools in our churches, there are good reasons to purposefully distinguish between those Sunday school classes and our worship services.
  • How can we help to encourage mutual learning between the men and the women in the church that trickles down from the ministry of Word and sacrament? This is where I see Sunday school functioning. 

  • Denying the historicity of various portions of Scripture was the backbone of theological liberalism at the turn of the 20th Century. Today, in the biblical studies world, scholars are far more nuanced and sophisticated in the ways in which they deny the historicity of Genesis 1-3. With the rise of studies in Ancient Near Eastern (ANE) literature and complex scientific theories of origins, there is no end to the ways in which its historicity is explained away. 
  • Appeal to how the writers of Scripture viewed the historical character of the creation/fall account of Genesis is, without doubt, the strongest internal-witness argument of Scripture
  • While some conservative biblical scholars may, in fact, play the "slippery slope" argument too quickly (and even, at times, inappropriately), when the authority of Scripture is brought into the mix, our reasoning is affected in a way that it is otherwise not affected by those things that are not distinctly biblical. For example Paul, in 1 Corinthians 15, makes a number of logical arguments about Christ's resurrection and the subsequent impact it has on our preaching, faith and personal resurrection (1 Cor. 15:14-18). As is true of the connection between the historicity and theology of the resurrection of Christ so too of the historicity and theology of the creation and fall account of Genesis 1-3. 

  • Yet in the past century and a half, much has been written and said particularly about “the prayer of faith.” The focus has been on mountain-moving prayer by which we simply “claim” things from God with confidence that we will receive them because we believe that He will give them.

     

    But what exactly is the prayer of faith?

  • it is believing God’s revealed Word, taking hold of His covenant commitment to it, and asking Him to keep it.
  • This, then, is the prayer of faith: to ask God to accomplish what He has promised in His Word. That promise is the only ground for our confidence in asking. Such confidence is not “worked up” from within our emotional life; rather, it is given and supported by what God has said in Scripture.

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  • That led the study's authors to a striking recommendation: "Religion and spirituality may be an underappreciated resource that physicians could explore with their patients, as appropriate," they wrote. "Our results do not imply that health care professionals should prescribe attendance at religious services, but for those who already hold religious beliefs, attendance at services could be encouraged as a form of meaningful social participation."
  • Women who started going to services then became more likely to quit smoking and less likely to show signs of depression
  • Women who attended services were no more or less likely to contract breast cancer. But those who attended services were substantially less likely to die of it.

  • Sola Scriptura in the Strange Land of Evangelicalism: The Peculiar but Necessary Responsibility of Defending Sola Scriptura Against Our Own Kind

  • ut Rowling is more offended by threats to free speech than she is by the presumptive Republican presidential nominee.
  • "His freedom to speak protects my freedom to call him a bigot," Rowling continued. "His freedom guarantees mine. Unless we take that absolute position, without caveats or apologies, we have set foot upon a road with only one destination. If you seek the removal of freedoms from an opponent simply on the grounds that they have offended you, you have crossed a line to stand alongside tyrants who imprison, torture and kill on exactly the same justification."

  • So I’m reinterpreting the entire world in terms of the meaning that it has when you realize that God governs it. But it’s not a reinterpretation in a vacuum as if I’m just saying, well, let’s see what we could say if we assume that God is there, but that these are actually the character of these regularities –they have the attributes of God, including language-like character and rationality. Those two things reveal that they’re personal.

  • The gist of it is that evangelical belief in the traditional doctrine of hell is in decline.
  • What we believe about Hell is fundamentally a reflection of what we believe about God, his character, and his justice. Revisions in the doctrine of Hell, therefore, are often accompanied by other revisions that undermine orthodox evangelical faith. I have in mind someone like Clark Pinnock, who is featured in the article as an “evangelical” proponent of annihilationism. But everyone who knows Pinnock knows that he was way off the evangelical reservation in his doctrine of God.
  • I know, I know. This is where all the annihliationists vociferously object, “But what about John Stott? Don’t you know he was an annihilationist? Don’t you think he was an evangelical?” Yes, I think he was evangelical. But I also believe that he had a patently unbiblical view of Hell. He was wrong. Really wrong. And his error on this point is the gift that keeps on giving, so to speak. Over the last couple of decades, his otherwise impeccable credentials have provided cover for others who have drifted away from the traditional view. Honestly, I wonder if there would even be any serious evangelical consideration of this view if it weren’t for him. In my estimation, it is not the legacy of Fudge that has given this view such staying power. It’s Stott’s legacy. And that is sad.

  • But, contrary to millions of self-appointed marriage gurus, it isn’t “hard work”, any more than sanctification is hard work. Rather, it is growth, joy, love, pressing toward the mark with uplifted head. We aren’t slaves drudging through mines, but children on our way to glory! What better way to picture this great truth than the marriage of two lovers, learning to exult in one another.
  • I always counsel newly-weds to turn the TV off and hole up together as much as possible for the first year. Don’t try to learn about your wife from stereotypes, books (especially of the “women’s place is in the home” variety) or locker room gossip. This is your wife you are learning about and she is the only one who can show you what causes her to exult. You are on a wonderful journey of discovery together.
  • If you cannot tell the difference between the sexual assault that is pornography and a loving relationship that is marriage, then please do not get married. Instead, repent and deal with your own abuse issues before you inflict yourself upon an unsuspecting wife. Marriage won’t cure your pornography issues. Only repentance will. You cannot learn how to cause a woman to rejoice by watching pornography. God did not create either you or her that way. There is no shortcut. you must put off yourself and your own lusts and actually learn to care about another person, namely, your wife.

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  • The indispensable Rod Dreher issued the following words last evening:
     
    “My government is the enemy of my church and my family. It has come to that. I figured it would one day. But not so soon.”
  • Two books that will help you in understanding the history, major players, philosophical foundations, and ultimate goals of the new sexual revolutionaries:
      

    • These are:

       
         
      1. BiblicalStudies.org.uk hosts over 25,000 full text theological articles linked into bibliographies on each book of the Bible. It also covers such subjects as hermeneutics, biblical languages, criticism, language, etc. - in short almost everything connected with the Bible and its study.
      2.  
      3. TheologicalStudies.org.uk throws its net slightly wider, providing material on a range of theologies and theologians, as well as specific doctrines such as the Trinity, for example. The section on practical theology seeks to provide material on how theology is applied in daily life, in such areas as politics and ethics.
      4.  
      5. EarlyChurch.org.uk covers church history until the rise of the medieval Papacy (c.600 AD).
      6.  
      7. MedievalChurch.org.uk takes over where EarlyChurch.org.uk leaves off, covering church history from the rise of the Papacy to the time of the Reformation.
      8.  
      9. ReformationChurch.org.uk - covers church history during and after the Reformation.
      10.  
      11. BiblicalArchaeology.org.uk provides material relating to the archaeology of the lands of the Bible.
         
      12.  
      13. Missiology.org.uk provides resources for students of Christian missions from the first Century onwards [currently under development].

  • Listen, I get it. You’re excited. You read the first two chapters of Rob Bell and rush to grab the mantle of antipodal Christian activism. You valiantly deem yourselves the arbiters of “social justice” in the name of Christ. After all, what would Jesus do? Sidenote: whenever someone asks you this, kindly inform them that destroying a temple, throwing over tables and insulting the ruling, political class as “fools” is not outside the realm of possibility (as per Matthew 21:12 and 23).
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