New Year. New Changes.

Making some changes in 2014.

You can now read my postings at

And you can still follow me on and will remain running; but with limited updates.

“The Supreme Mystery” - J.I. Packer on the Doctrine of the Incarnation

“The really staggering Christian claim is that Jesus of Nazareth was God made man– that the second person of the Godhead became the ‘second man’ (1 Cor. 15:47), determining human destiny, the second representative head of the race, and that He took humanity without loss of deity, so that Jesus of Nazareth was as truly and fully divine as He was human…

It is here, in the thing that happened at the first Christmas, that the profoundest and most unfathomable depths of the Christian revelation lie. ‘The Word became flesh’ (John 1:14); God became man; the divine Son became a Jew; the Almighty appeared on earth as a helpless human baby, unable to do more than lie and stare and wriggle and make noises, needing to be fed and changed and taught to talk like any other child.

And there was no illusion or deception in this: the babyhood of the Son of God was a reality. The more you think about it, the more staggering it gets. Nothing in fiction is so fantastic as is this truth of the Incarnation.”

~ J.I. Packer, Knowing God 

Foreman on "Christian" Music

Jon Foreman, lead singer of Switchfoot, recently addressed the question of, "Are you a Christian band?" Here was his response. It's worth considering:
“To be honest, this question grieves me because I feel that it represents a much bigger issue than simply a couple SF tunes. In true Socratic form, let me ask you a few questions: Does Lewis or Tolkien mention Christ in any of their fictional series? Are Bach’s sonata’s Christian? What is more Christ-like, feeding the poor, making furniture, cleaning bathrooms, or painting a sunset? There is a schism between the sacred and the secular in all of our modern minds. 
The view that a pastor is more ‘Christian’ than a girls volleyball coach is flawed and heretical. The stance that a worship leader is more spiritual than a janitor is condescending and flawed. These different callings and purposes further demonstrate God’s sovereignty.
Many songs are worthy of being written. Switchfoot will write some, Keith Green, Bach, and perhaps yourself have written others. Some of these songs are about redemption, others about the sunrise, others about nothing in particular: written for the simple joy of music.
None of these songs has been born again, and to that end there is no such thing as Christian music. No. Christ didn’t come and die for my songs, he came for me. Yes. My songs are a part of my life. But judging from scripture I can only conclude that our God is much more interested in how I treat the poor and the broken and the hungry than the personal pronouns I use when I sing. I am a believer. Many of these songs talk about this belief. An obligation to say this or do that does not sound like the glorious freedom that Christ died to afford me.
I do have an obligation, however, a debt that cannot be settled by my lyrical decisions. My life will be judged by my obedience, not my ability to confine my lyrics to this box or that.
We all have a different calling; Switchfoot is trying to be obedient to who we are called to be. We’re not trying to be Audio A or U2 or POD or Bach: we’re trying to be Switchfoot. You see, a song that has the words: ‘Jesus Christ’ is no more or less ‘Christian’ than an instrumental piece. (I’ve heard lots of people say Jesus Christ and they weren’t talking about their redeemer.) You see, Jesus didn’t die for any of my tunes. So there is no hierarchy of life or songs or occupation only obedience. We have a call to take up our cross and follow. We can be sure that these roads will be different for all of us. Just as you have one body and every part has a different function, so in Christ we who are many form one body and each of us belongs to all the others. Please be slow to judge ‘brothers’ who have a different calling.”
Foreman mentions the Christian “box” that many people want to stay in, and put others in. I agree with Foreman that this box is particularly limiting when it comes to art. So go out and create something – something beautiful, something wonderful – and do it to the glory of God.
Boom. Couldn't have said it better!

Originally posted by Dave Browning, @bigdaverino, at Deliberate Simplicity.

Crucial Questions Series - Classic Resources from RC Sproul FOR FREE!

To further help the body of Christ know what they believe, why they believe it, how to live it, and how to share it, RC Sproul has decided to hook his brothas up by providing us with some excellent resources for free!  For shizzle, they're all free!

RC's Crucial Questions Series is absolutely free in Kindle and iTunes.  Check it out.  And share it with some peeps.

Booya RC Sproul.  Booya.

Help in Understanding the Ancient Biblical Cultures

People often ask me where they can learn about the cultural and historical backgrounds of the biblical text.  Well, this is sometimes a tricky question to answer because much of the good (i.e., accurate/trustworthy) resources available are a bit academic and, therefore, most people would have difficulty working through it.  And sometimes there are great resources which are very readable/usable, like Zondervan's Illustrated Bible Background Commentary, but they're too expensive and, therefore, inaccessible to most.

Well, here's a resource that is both useable and accessible to just about everyone - Ancient Context, Ancient Faith Series.  I highly recommend it.  It will challenge you and bless you in your Bible study and open your mind to the life and times of the ancient Middle East.

The teaching ministry of Ray Vander Laan at has proven to be very helpful on shedding some light on the ancient biblical cultures and contexts as well.

These books will make want to read "The Book"!

No offense to the above author (and the producer of this lame promo video) but the book series is much better than this video.  I promise!  Haha. 

CS Lewis on Learning to Love Others as We Love Ourself

You are told to love your neighbour as yourself. How do you love yourself? When I look into my own mind, I find that I do not love myself by thinking myself a dear old chap or having affectionate feelings. I do not think that I love myself because I am particularly good, but just because I am myself and quite apart from my character. I might detest something which I have done. Nevertheless, I do not cease to love myself. In other words, that definite distinction that Christians make between hating sin and loving the sinner is one that you have been making in your own case since you were born. You dislike what you have done, but you don’t cease to love yourself.  
~ C.S. Lewis, God in the Dock

When the Rabbi Says "Come"

In the days of Jesus, what did the term disciple (talmid) mean to them; and what can we learn from that today? Ray Vander Laan, a scholar of the Hebrew texts and customs, Christian teacher, and Ancient Middle East expert, helps us understand.

Learn more from Ray Vander Laan at FollowThe

Marriage: A Sacrificial Commitment to the Good of One Another

In sharp contrast with our culture, the Bible teaches that the essence of marriage is a sacrificial commitment to the good of the other. That means that love is more fundamentally action than emotion. But in talking this way, there is a danger of falling into the opposite error that characterized many ancient and traditional societies. It is possible to see marriage as merely a social transaction, a way of doing your duty to family, tribe and society. Traditional societies made the family the ultimate value in life, and so marriage was a mere transaction that helped your family’s interest. By contrast, contemporary Western societies make the individual’s happiness the ultimate value, and so marriage becomes primarily an experience of romantic fulfillment. But the Bible sees GOD as the supreme good – not the individual or the family – and that gives us a view of marriage that intimately unites feelings AND duty, passion AND promise. That is because at the heart of the Biblical idea of marriage is the covenant.  ~ Tim Keller

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Too Busy?

"I'm too busy for outreach and mission."  Sadly, that's something I hear often.

Below, Paul Tripp gives a brief, but great, rebuttal to the overused false notion of I'm too busy.

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