Archive for the ‘Christian character’ Category

I never saw fear. What is it?

December 7, 2013

I never saw fear. What is it?

The young Horatio Nelson’s words to his grandmother.

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Lloyd Jones on why people rush out of church at the end of the service

December 5, 2011

.. I have come to the conclusion during this last year (1968), during my convalescence, and while sitting at the back of many congregations, that a number of people seem to go to a place of worship and to a service in order to go home! Their main idea seems to be to get out and to get home. Why do they go at all? That is the question, I think, that needs to be asked. Why this great anxiety for the service, and especially the sermon, to finish? There is only one conclusion to be drawn; these people need to be humbled. These people are lacking in spirituality, in a spiritual mind and outlook, and in spiritual understanding.

Martin Lloyd Jones, Preaching and Preachers, 1985, p.156

I will give you anything you want except my money or my Chess set

April 12, 2011

Dear God,

If you give me Genie lamp like Alladdin, I will give you anything you want except my money or my Chess set.

– Raphael

Children’s Letters to God

Rob Bell and humility where God has spoken

March 31, 2011
Will everybody be saved, or will some perish apart from God forever because of

their choices? Those are questions, or more accurately, those are tensions we are

free to leave fully intact. We don’t need to resolve them or answer them because

we can’t, and so we simply respect them, creating space for the freedom that love

requires.

Rob Bell, Love Wins, (115)

Here’s the problem: Scripture answers the question and the only humble thing to do is to believe what the omniscient God has revealed. Not to believe the omniscient God’s revelation (to say, we ‘can’t’ answer these questions) is astonishing hubris on the part of a finite and fallen creature.

 

Soren Kierkegaard tells a parable of a community of ducks waddling off to duck church to hear the duck preacher

January 12, 2010

Soren Kierkegaard tells a parable of a community of ducks waddling off to duck church to hear the duck preacher. The duck preacher spoke eloquently of how God had given the ducks wings with which to fly. With these wings there was nowhere the ducks could not go, there was no God-given task the ducks could not accomplish. With those wings they could soar into the presence of God. Shouts of “Amen” were quacked throughout the duck congregation. At the conclusion of the service, the ducks left, commenting on what a wonderful message they had heard — and waddled back home.

source

Be not merely hearers of the word but doers.

When it says ‘at the name of Jesus every knee should bow’, it means both your knees

December 19, 2009

When it says ‘at the name of Jesus every knee should bow’, it means both your knees.

divers Nonconformists pitying the dying and distressed People, that had none to call the impenitent to Repentance, nor to help them to prepare for another World, resolved that no obedience to the Laws of any mortal Men whatsoever could justify them for neglecting of Men’s Souls and Bodies in such extremities

December 8, 2009

…divers Nonconformists pitying the dying and distressed People, that had none to call the impenitent to Repentance, nor to help them to prepare for another World, resolved that no obedience to the Laws of any mortal Men whatsoever could justify them for neglecting of Men’s Souls and Bodies in such extremities.

Richard Baxter, describing how those ministers ejected from their minsitries in 1662 returned to their flocks during the plague of 1665. The ministers who had taken up the vacant posts had abandoned their flocks to seek refuge from the plague.

Quoted in Faith Cook, Fearless Pilgrim: The Life and Times of John Bunyan, Evangelical Press, 2008, p.246

Young Christians are by and by, like their Master led into the wilderness

December 7, 2009

Young Christians are by and by, like their Master led into the wilderness…At this time we think that we are not God’s child, that we are not justified nor pardoned, that we are mistaken with ourselves…After the devil has tried us thus for a season, he then assaults us with evil imaginations and blasphemous thoughts, doubts about the authority of the holy Scriptures, scruples about the divinity of our Saviour…At these times we are apt to reason with ourselves, saying, Surely we are not born again; surely we are not Sons of God, for if we were, why are we thus?

William Grimshaw, quoted in Faith Cook, Fearless Pilgrim: The Life and Times of John Bunyan, Evangelical Press, 2008, p.485-6, n.24

Leopold Socha hid ten Jews from Lvov in the sewers under the city from the Nazis

November 17, 2009

Leopold Socha hid ten Jews from Lvov in the sewers under the city from the Nazis. When the German army retreated he called down to them and told them they were free.

Some months later, Socha was accidentally killed, run over by a truck in the streets of Lvov. ‘As he lay on the pavement with blood dripping…the Poles crossed themselves and said that it was God’s punishment for hiding Jews.

Martin Gilbert, Holocaust, p.714

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A tree that is planted in a rain forest is never forced to extend its roots downward in search of water. Consequently, it remains poorly anchored and can be toppled by even a moderate wind

November 11, 2009

A tree that is planted in a rain forest is never forced to extend its roots downward in search of water. Consequently, it remains poorly anchored and can be toppled by even a moderate wind. By contrast, a mesquite tree that’s planted in a dry desert is threatened by its hostile environment. It can survive only by sending its roots down 30 feet or more into the earth, seeking cool water. But through this adaptation to an arid land, the well-rooted tree becomes strong and steady against all assailants.

Dr James Dobson, Raising Children, Kingsway 1987, p.209