Monday, November 26, 2007

Sounds like somebody's got a case of the Mondays.

Read about how the US Supreme Court agrees to review handgun ban in Washington, DC.
"In 2003, Washington resident Dick Heller, who lives in one of the city's tougher neighborhoods, lodged a suit against the local authorities saying his constitutional right to bear arms was being violated. Although his case was initially rejected, he won on appeal to a federal appeals court in March [2008]."


Read my comments (and Ray's) on a blog post about Mike Huckabee's sermon at Prestonwood Baptist on Jeremiah 29:11. (Check out the sermon transcript and video in that same post.)


Read some thoughts on praying in groups and in church prayer meetings.
"But I can’t stress this too strongly…if you really care only a tiny bit about Aunt Mildred and see her very seldom, don’t bring her up with the saints to pray about! Even your prayer requests need to encourage the saints and praying about people we don’t know and that not even the person requesting prayer cares about is absolutely discouraging."


Read as Anthony Carter of Non Nobis Domine shares "50 Things I Love about Politics." I'm not so sure I could have some up with 50. It might be easier for me to eat 5o eggs. Why'd he have to say "50" anyway?


Check out the Visual Dictionary.


Kummer at Gospel Driven Children’s Ministry shares links to free Christmas craft ideas for kids.


Read as the Arkansas Times labels Mike Huckabee as a "Flip-Flopper" on the abortion issue with regard to leaving it up to the individual states: "Mike Huckabee: For states' rights before he was against states' rights."
John Hawkins: Switching gears again, do you think we should overturn Roe v. Wade?

Mike Huckabee: It would please me because I think Roe v. Wade is based on a real stretch of Constitutional application -- that somehow there is a greater privacy issue in the abortion concern -- than there is a human life issue -- and that the federal government should be making that decision as opposed to states making that decision.

So, I've never felt that it was a legitimate manner in which to address this and, first of all, it should be left to the states, the 10th Amendment, but secondly, to somehow believe that the taking of an innocent, unborn human life is about privacy and not about that unborn life is ludicrous.


Read as Al Mohler of SBTS wonders at parental behavior in "Freak Dancing" -- When Parents Advocate Misbehavior.
"Freak dancing" is well known throughout the nation, and it involves what can only be described as "sexually charged" physical contact and movement. But many of the kids in Argyle were "disgusted" that freak dancing was banned at the homecoming dance, so they left. That might be fairly easy to understand. After all, adolescents are expected to exhibit adolescent patterns of misbehavior. What makes this story so interesting is that so many parents responded by joining their adolescents in immature response. In fact, their protest of the superintendent's policy is shocking.


Read a Primer on the Problem of Evil at Parchment and Pen.
"This problem is the single greatest apologetic issue that Christians face today. In a postmodern world, people’s questions, objections, and problems with the Christian worldview are usually connected to the reality of evil in the world and their attempts to harmonize this reality with the seemingly contradictory notion of an all-powerful, all-good God."


Read Rethinking the Five-Second Rule with regard to food dropped on the floor.
"In 2003, a then-high school science intern at the University of Illinois, Jillian Clarke, conducted a survey and found that slightly more than half of adult men and 70 percent of adult women knew about the five-second rule and many said they followed it. Clarke then conducted an experiment to find out if various food became contaminated with bacteria after just five seconds on the floor."


Read about the Aggies smoking the Longhorns like a cheap cigar ... again, as Coach Fran goes out on top. How's THAT feel, t-sips?
"It's really hard," Texas defensive back Brandon Foster said. "You never enjoy losing, but losing to the Aggies is just even worse."


Read Lionel's thoughts on Modesty and Christian Women. (See also my thoughts on modesty encompassing more than just dress.)
"We have a new fad among professing Christians today, the fad of being sexy. Now how a Christian can want to be labeled sexy from anyone other than their spouse is cause for great concern."


Read Justin Taylor's thoughts and suggestions regarding commenting on blogs.


Rank your most necessary technological gadgetry. (HT Tank) I've included my rankings in the comments section and would be curious to see yours as well.
"Technology is everywhere. Whether at home, in the office or on the go, gadgets and gizmos of every shape, size and ring tone constantly surround us. But which ones do you feel are truly needed? Rank your favorites and see how they compare with other CNN.com users."



Much to the bewilderment of Providence Church's own Mark Landers I am a book marker-upper. It probably takes me 2-3 times longer to read a book because I write in the margins and underline and circle and doodle and write notes in the front & back flaps. I know that's desecration to some of you, but ... I heartily recommend you read On Marking Books: Thoughts from Mortimer J. Adler. Incidentally, Adler's How to Read a Book is a classic and a highly suggested read as well.
"I contend, quite bluntly, that marking up a book is not an act of mutilation but of love."


I've read a fair amount about the aversion of many preachers to speak to the issue of the wrath of God (e.g.). Which brings to mind the following summary of the liberal gospel by H. Richard Niebuhr: “A God without wrath brought men without sin into a kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ without a Cross.” I also found this from Ravi Zacharias: “It is because God’s wrath is real that His mercy is relevant. Unless you have a real wrath, a real anger, the Biblical concepts of long-suffering, of mercy, and of grace are robbed of their meaning.” (HT Benji)

"Self-importance is our greatest enemy. Think about it - what weakens us is feeling offended by the deeds and misdeeds of our fellowmen. Our self-importance requires that we spend most of our lives offended by someone."
- Carlos Castaneda

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10 Comments:

At 26 November, 2007 11:42, Blogger GUNNY said...

Don't forget to rank your technological necessities before being influenced by my list, but here are are my most needed gadgets:
1. Home Computer
2. Cell Phone
3. High-Speed Internet
4. Television
5. Answering Machine/Voice Mail
6. Pocket PC/pda
7. Digital Camera
8. Digital Camcorder
9. Wireless Internet Access
10. Digital Video Recorder

 
At 26 November, 2007 12:25, Anonymous M said...

Mortimer J. Adler was an unbeliever, and that sufficiently explains his un-Christian attitude toward books.

One should recall that the note taking technology has come a long way since the Sumerians invinted the quality hard bound book, thus there really is no excuse for those who love Jesus to write in their good books. Remember, someday, someone else will read that beautiful book! Don't display your ignorance to them in the margins!

Paperbacks, on the other hand, are altogether open to defilement...

 
At 26 November, 2007 18:40, Anonymous mark t said...

Before I consider eating a food item that has fallen on the floor I carefully consider two factors. 1) How much do I want it? 2) How clean do I perceive the floor to be? My belief that the floor is clean and my strong desire can, in some cases outweigh any reflection upon bacteria.

 
At 26 November, 2007 22:17, Anonymous NCguy said...

Gunny, your link for your comments on Huckabee's sermon is broken.

 
At 26 November, 2007 22:44, Blogger GUNNY said...

Thanks, NCGuy.

For some reason that whole site is cagged at the moment. I'll recheck again later in hope that they have regained scene control.

 
At 27 November, 2007 13:38, Blogger GUNNY said...

NCGuy,

His site is back up, but I've cut & pasted the comments I mentioned.

The gist of the Jer 29:11 sermon is that God has wonderful plans for Mike Huckabee, etc.

COMMENTS:
#1 Nov 15th, 2007 at 6:43 pm
Gunny Wrote:
I may be in the minority here and I’m trying not to be too cynical, but it wears me out to hear Jeremiah 29:11 ripped out of its original context.

Huck’s not alone, for it’s a great t-shirt verse, but I’m firmly convinced at least 93% of professing Christians have never read the context of that verse.

It’s a message, of course, to the exiles of Israel about how to live patiently in their new cities, awaiting restoration to the land, because God had promised.

10″For thus says the LORD: When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will visit you, and I will fulfill to you my promise and bring you back to this place. 11 For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope. 12 Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will hear you. (Jer 29:10-12; ESV)

These are specific words of prophecy made to God’s covenant nation. These are not promises made to Huck or me.

Some good and encouraging things were said, and they were true, just not from exegesis of this particular text.


#2 Nov 15th, 2007 at 7:28 pm
Ray Fowler Wrote:

Gunny -

Good point! I am chuckling because I was thinking some of the same thoughts when I posted the sermon.

For example, why do we often quote Jeremiah 29:11 (“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” ) but not Jeremiah 21:5 (”I myself will fight against you with an outstretched hand and a mighty arm in anger and fury and great wrath.”)? I am guessing we are much more careful to check the context on 21:5 than on 29:11!

Although we should be careful to put Jeremiah 29:11 into context, I do think we can rightly apply the promise in the verse to believing Christians today. For example, we also often quote Jeremiah 29:13 from the same passage: “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Is that verse also only for the exiles or is that for us, too?

I think if we can find parallel verses in Scripture which teach the same truth (such as Romans 8:28 for Jeremiah 29:11), then we can (carefully) apply the promise to ourselves. But, yes, we must set the verse in its context first before we can begin applying.

Great comment! Thanks for stopping by.


# 3 Nov 15th, 2007 at 8:19 pm
GUNNY HARTMAN Wrote:

Good points, Ray. I’ve yet to see Jeremiah 21:5 on the back of a t-shirt, but I might have one done just for fun.

;-)

I remember the first time I preached Jeremiah 29:13 many moons ago and realized that in the context the seeking was connected to obedience to the covenant, not so much an intensive time of solitude where I pietistically seek after God to have a special experience with Him.

It ruined a lot of the illustrations and applications I had up my sleeve that I had been hoping to connect to a passage! We live and we learn, though I’m slow on the uptake.

Don’t get me wrong, I have my own pietistic leanings, and unashamedly so, but I realize the verse was more akin to John 14:21 than James 4:8, though both truths of Scripture are precious.

I think one thing that folks miss out on in the application of Jeremiah 29 to a contemporary audience is the corporate nature of the commitment God makes.

He’s faithful to His promises to His covenant people, rather than an emphasis we tend to see.

For example, we make the “you” more singular instead of the plurality of the original text. We tend to hear, “For I know the plans I have for Gunny, plans to give him lots of stuff, making him happy, and insulating him from bad things, which will make him sad.”

I think a more appropriate application would be toward the/a church instead. But then again the longer I’m a Christian the more I’m convinced individualism has somewhat run amuck.

Good stuff, brother.


#4 Nov 17th, 2007 at 12:44 pm
Ray Fowler Wrote:

Gunny -

I love the t-shirt idea. It would make a great teaching illustration to have the two t-shirts made up and then have students study the verses in context. Good points on the “you plural,” too.

 
At 28 November, 2007 20:12, Blogger Rev. said...

This past Sunday morning I turned on the TV to check the weather. It wasn't on the Weather Channel when I turned it on, but it was on (much to my chagrin) Kenneth Copeland's show. At first I thought it was "Meet the Press" or some such because Mr. Huckabee was on there, but then the camera angle shifted and there was ol' Bro. Kenneth chattin' about the Bible with ol' Mr. Huckabee. Needless to say, the respect gauge or Mr. H dropped several thousand degrees.

 
At 30 November, 2007 11:27, Blogger Lionel Woods said...

Hey I was just posting something along the same lines. Any endorsement of Copeland and his culprits is a vote lost. These guys are so off and it is more than theology bro. It is much deeper than that. I can't believe the Huckster would do something as crazy as that. But he rolled the dice and guess what "snake eyes"

 
At 30 November, 2007 12:00, Blogger GUNNY said...

Amen, brother.

Huck is theologically liberal.

Many of Huckabee's critics point to his fiscal philosophy typified by a willingness to raise taxes during his time as Arkansas governor. But what caught my eye was Huckabee's decision to side with moderates when conservatives gained control of the Southern Baptist Convention during the 1980's. Fund quotes former Texas judge, Paul Pressler, who sided with the conservatives in that bitter fight, "I know of no conservative (Huckabee) appointed while he headed the Arkansas Baptist Convention."

In other words, Huck's among those who wouldn't affirm "inerrancy" and so forth.

He also wouldn't sign a bill to help folks because he doesn't believe in calling "natural disasters" "acts of God," since His God would have nothing to do with such things.

 
At 30 November, 2007 12:26, Blogger Lionel Woods said...

Why are so many "conservatives" endorsing him then? Why are there many bloggers that I respect in love with this dude like he was the next best thing since peanut butter made it on to slice bread? This is difficult to reconcile for me.

 

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