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Monday, February 27, 2006

The Rationality of Christianity

The following discussion of the rationality of Christianity is written and was sent by Edwin B. Fountain, an ordained elder and member of Lyons Landmark Baptist Church in Lyons, Georgia.

“…a sound mind.” 2 Tim. 1:7

Christianity has been attacked in every possible way. It has been represented as grounded in mental weakness, and a sure sign of intellectual deficiency. Ted Turner said Christianity is the religion of losers. Where mentality is concerned the very opposite of weakness and deficiency is true. Sin is folly; it is the very essence of folly; it is direct and ruinous folly. Christianity is true wisdom it imparts real dignity and is the sure evidence of a sound mind.

A sound mind condemns all that is vain and trifling; so does Christianity. Pleasures, riches, titles and distinctions of this life are all empty, mere show, uncertain and unsatisfactory. Now, while Christianity sheds the true light on these things it also presents spiritual pleasures, heavenly riches, divine titles and distinctions; and gives real, present, and satisfactory good to the soul.

A sound mind avoids credulity and so does Christianity. The credulous believe without, or on imperfect, evidence. They take all for what it is represented to be, such as evolution.

Christianity is based on full and satisfactory evidence -- evidence arising from fulfillment of prophecy, miracles and morality. There is also the goodness, purity, and holy influence that it exerts on the heart, tongue and lives of men, women and children.

Christianity has been sifted, tried and tested by thousands of malignant foes and still stands just as it was when first given, straight forward, moral and above all spiritually alive.

A sound mind is opposed to superstition and so is Christianity. A superstitious person sees every object through some kind of dark medium. Everything is tinged with the distorted peculiarities of his or her own benighted mind. Every service, ceremony or rite is magnified so as to hold the mind in a state of slavish awe and tormenting dread.

Christianity does not present itself truly in any of these forms. Christianity has principles, not mere vagaries. It is not meat and drink, rather it is righteousness, peace and joy in Christ. It is light in the mind, love in the heart and obedience in the whole of one’s life.

A sound mind is opposed to skepticism and so is true Christianity. A skeptic is one who is never satisfied with evidence and remains unbelieving though surrounded by the clear and palpable truth.

A Christian tries what is revealed by searching the Scriptures to see if these things be true and having found the truth delights in it, abides in it and does not sell it. The infidel displays the unsoundness of his mind to a glaring degree when he professes to believe that the world is here by accident: that it governs itself, regulates and preserves itself, that man is nothing but a refined animal, the soul a shade, Christ an imposter, the Bible full of fables and an after-life a dream.

The sound mind of the Christian appeals to the Word of God and on all these subjects takes God’s Word as his sure and unerring guide.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Threescore and ten

Yesterday, we sang the following Watts' hymn, to the tune "Exit" by P. Sherman. The text is based on part of Psalm 90. The last two stanzas of the second verse drew some curiosity for his unusual wording.

"Death, like an overflowing stream,
Sweeps us away; our life's a dream,
An empty tale, a morning flower,
Cut down and withered in an hour.

Our age to seventy years is set;
How short the time! how frail the state.
And if to eighty we arrive,
We rather sigh and groan that live."
-- Isaac Watts, Psalm 90, pt. 1

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Texas State Sacred Harp Convention -- 2006

14th Annual Texas State Convention

Saturday February 25th
Sunday February 26th

Wellborn Community Center, 4119 Greens Prairie Rd. W., College Station, Texas

More info: Kevin Powell
Book: 1991 Revision


Singing begins at 10 a.m. on Saturday and 9:30 a.m. on Sunday

Lunch will be provided.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

ALL INIQUITY

"Who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from all iniquity." Titus 2:14

Sins of heart. Sins of lip. Sins of life. There are five things as regards sin, from which our blessed Lord came to redeem us—its guilt, its filth, its power, its love, its practice. By His death, He redeemed us from sin's guilt. By the washing of regeneration, He delivers us from sin's filth. By the power of His resurrection, He liberates us from sin's dominion. By revealing His beauty, He frees us from sin's love. By making the conscience tender in His fear, He preserves us from sin's practice. The blood of Jesus purifies us from all sin.


Riches of J.C. Philpot – 1802-1869

(Thanks to Hoyt Sparks and Wylie Fulton for this)

Monday, February 20, 2006

Presidents' Day - Presidents' Quotes

In honor of Presidents' Day in the U.S. -- miscellaneous quotes from former Presidents of the United States

"Let us raise a standard to which the wise and honest may repair; the rest is in the hands of God." - George Washington

"Old minds are like old horses: you must exercise them if you wish to keep them in working order." - John Adams

"It is error alone which needs the support of government. Truth can stand by itself." - Thomas Jefferson

"Duty is ours; results are God's." - John Quincy Adams

"It must be felt that there is no national security but in the nation's humble, acknowledged dependence upon God and His overruling providence." - Franklin Pierce

"If wrinkles must be written upon our brows, let them not be written upon the heart." - James A. Garfield

"We Americans have no commission from God to police the world." - Benjamin Harrison

"No man is justified in doing evil on the ground of expediency." - Theodore Roosevelt


"A regret for the mistakes of yesterday must not blind us to the tasks of today." - Warren G. Harding

"There is nothing new in the world except the history you do not know." - Harry S. Truman

"It's hard when you're up to your armpits in alligators to remember you came here to drain the swamp." - Ronald Reagan

"We are not the sum of our possessions." - George Herbert W. Bush

Saturday, February 18, 2006

On Church Music - Francis Wayland

One of our essential beliefs is that of the spirituality of the church, that is, that the church of Christ is composed exclusively of spiritual or regenerated persons. As God is a spirit, and those that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth, we have always believed that the real worship of God was performed only by believers. To us, worship, either in public or private, is the offering up to God of holy and devout affections. Hence we believe that no one can be a minister of the sanctuary, unless he be a devout and regenerate man. Hence we believe that to sing the praises of God without really lifting up the heart to him, is in no sense Christian worship, and is, in fact, no acceptable service. Hence our belief always has been that singing is a part of worship which belongs, in a peculiar manner, to the disciples of the Saviour. In this service they, with one voice, utter the confessions of penitence, the triumphs of faith, the confidence of hope, and bow down together with one feeling of holy adoration. Hence our singing was a service of the church, in which others united with them only in so far as they could sympathize with them in the sentiments which they uttered. These are, if I mistake not, our beliefs on this subject, and to it our practice, until lately, conformed. A member of the church selected the tunes, led the singing, and the whole church, and the devout portion of the congregation, united with him in this part of religious worship. Their design was to make melody in their hearts to the Lord.

For these reasons, Baptists formerly were universally opposed to the introduction of musical instruments into the house of God. They asked, "How can senseless things speak the praises of God?"... the singing in Baptist churches was formerly what is now denominated congregational. We had neither choirs nor organs. Nothing but the voices of worshipers was heard in hymning the praises of God, and in this service every devout worshiper was expected to unite... I do not pretend that in this singing there was any artistic excellence. This is never needed in popular music, or that music which is intended to move a multitude of people...The tunes employed were perfectly adapted to religious sentiment, and blended the whole audience in one consciousness of solemn worship. To use the language of Burns -- surely a competent authority -- "They chant their artless notes in simple guise, They tune their hearts, by far the noblest aim: Perhaps Dundee's wild warbling notes arise, Or plaintive Martyrs, worthy of the name; Or noble Elgin fans the heavenward flame, The sweetest far of Scotia's holy lays. Compared with these, Italian trills are tame; The tickled ears no heartfelt raptures raise, No unison have they with our Creator's praise."

Men of piety have begun to feel that it is wicked to substitute a mere musical diversion for the solemn worship of God. Men of correct taste, at least, acknowledge that congregational singing, and solemn and devout music, are alone appropriate to the service of the sanctuary. Whenever a return to the old customs has been tried, it has met with unexpected success. May the reform be universal throughout our Baptist churches.

-- Selected from Notes on the Principles and Practices of Baptist Churches, by Francis Wayland, 1857

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Baptists baptizing "infants"?

In general children come into churches at much younger ages than in times past. They probably join earlier in progressive churches as opposed to primitivistic churches, and probably earlier in "Arminian" churches as opposed to "Calvinistic" churches. Whether or not this general observation is really true, what do you think about the relationship of children and church?

1. What biblical basis is there for children coming into churches at very young ages?
2. If you use believers' church and believers' baptism as a basis, why do you think the apostolic church did not seem to have any significant outreach to young children?
3. If children are church members on an equal footing with all other members, how do you feel about their equal vote in church business with mature adult members?
4. How much actual difference is there between baptizing 3 and 4 years olds who can answer the right questions (often as prompted by parents or pastors), and baptizing infants whose parents have faith for them?
5. Why is there a trend among the modern Baptist churches to baptize children at younger and younger ages? (were our forefathers unfaithful? are we unscriptural? are children smarter now, or more spiritual?)

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

From death to life

Today I heard someone say this:
Most religions are about trying to make good men out of bad men, while the Gospel is about God making living men out of dead men.

Monday, February 13, 2006

Four Dimensions of Love

"That ye, being rooted and grounded in love, May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; And to know the love of Christ..." Ephesians 3

The Depth of Love
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.

The Breadth of Love
Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.

The Length of Love
Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

The Height of Love
And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.

I Corinthians 13:1-13

Saturday, February 11, 2006

"Landmarkism" and Today's SBC Church

I made a few comments on some factual inaccuracies in Brother Tim Holmes article Landmarkism and Today's Baptist Church. Apparently it is not admissable to disagree on the "Doctrines of Grace" blog -- or else the comments were too long -- and my comments were deleted. So I am posting them here. The italicized items are Bro. Holmes' words, and the unitalicized items are my response.

"The main reason for the creation of the Southern Baptist Convention was due to an attempted escape of Landmark ideas in the church...The greatest reason for the institution of the Southern Baptist Convention was to move away from Landmark views." I am at a loss to understand the above statement. How could the Southern Baptist Convention, which was organized in 1845, been organized to "escape Landmark ideas in the church"? This is neither consistent with Bro. Holmes' sources nor his own contention that "J. R. Graves, a preacher of that time, is responsible for setting this movement adrift during the 1850s and pressed hard to have the SBC support his views." How could the 1845 organization of the Convention been effected to avoid an ecclesiological viewpoint originating in the 1850s with J.. R. Graves, J. M. Pendleton, A. C. Dayton, et al.?

In another paragraph,
Bro. Holmes builds a scenario of Baptist and Church of Christ churches across the road from one another, when "A dynamic Baptist preacher comes to town telling the people that unless they become Baptists, they will not see heaven." I have seen this raised as a common charge against Landmark Baptists, but I have never seen solid evidence presented that this could be anything more than a irregularity among them.

"The most distinct doctrine of Landmarkism was that 'the terms church and God's kingdom were used synonymously with each other. The Kingdom embraced the first church, and now it embraces all the churches.' For Landmarkers, this meant that the Kingdom of God is made up of the sum total of Baptist churches." On this item, I am just curious. This position is taken definitely and clearly by J. R. Graves in his writings. In my experience in Texas, this is not a common idea held by Landmark Baptists. Perhaps the strong emphasis on autonomy and 'local church only' leveled it out? Did it survive with any strength among Landmarkers? If so, when and where?

"The largest portion of Landmark influence can be found today in the church ordinances on baptism and communion…Restricted communion is still enforced to this day in the majority of SB churches because Landmarkers taught that only the true church could take part in the service." There is and has been quite a bit of debate on the history of "restricted baptism", alien immersion, etc. But I think there is no reason to connect the presence of restricted communion in Southern Baptist churches with Landmarkism. I believe it is relatively easy to historically demonstrate restricted communion to be the standard and major position of Baptists. Except for Free Will and General Baptists, Baptists until recent years have been almost universally in favor of it (Of course, the decline of restricted communion is much less recent in the UK as opposed to the US). If it is a "Landmark" issue, why is it prevalent in groups not associated with Southern Baptists long before the rise of Graves -- Primitive, United, Regular, Old Regular, etc.? (The same could be said concerning baptism). If Graves/Landmarkism made an unique contribution in the area of restricted communion, it would be his "local church only" restriction, which was not common in his day. Before (and still by many) it was restricted to baptized church members of like faith and order rather than only members of the participating church. The fact that many opponents of Landmarkism, such as R. B. C. Howell, were also restricted communionists, is somewhat telling.

"A very interesting find about Author and Pastor James Marion Frost wrote in 1888 The Consistency of Restricted Communion. This pamphlet supported Landmark views of communion, but he was the same person who helped start the SB Sunday School Board, of which Landmarkism opposed from it's beginnings (Biography). It appears that Frost could have been either ignorant of true Landmark views, or simply out to please who ever he was around in the denomination at that time." I believe this statement, besides possibly misrepresenting Frost, shows lack of information on both communion, as noted above, and Baptist history regarding Landmark ecclesiology. A number of Landmark Baptist leaders (e.g. Ben Bogard, J. N. Hall, J.. A. Scarboro, J. T. Moore), especially around the turn of the 20th century, opposed the Southern Baptist boards and methodologies -- believing these practices inconsistent with their ecclesiology. An evidently greater number of Landmark leaders (e.g. B. H. & J. M. Carroll, J. B. Moody, J. B. Gambrell) saw no inconsistency with their ecclesiology and their Convention methods. So I see no reason to single out Frost as "ignorant of true Landmark views".

In discussing the essence of the church, Bro. Holmes writes, "The definition of church loses its meaning and is
no longer an 'assembly' of people of faith, but a building that we go to on Sundays." This seems to imply that is a natural result of Landmarkism. I find it hard to believe that anyone purporting an extensive knowledge of Landmarkism would make such a statement. I have never heard one Landmark-type Baptist equate "the church" with "the building", but have heard the frequently heard them decry such an idea.

Landmarkism is a frequent "whipping-boy" of other Baptists. If one disagrees with this ecclesiology, so be it. But the details of the disagreement need to be correct. I hope this post will further our knowledge of the subject.

Friday, February 10, 2006

"Martinism" -- a Mississippi Controversy

For history lovers: Bits on "Martinism" -- a Mississippi Controversy

Martinism was "[a] controversy which arose about 1893 within the bounds of the Mississippi Baptist Association over the doctrinal views of Matthew Thomas Martin...Briefly, his views were: (1) Men are dead in trespasses and sins and 'made alive' by the Holy Spirit, which process is generation. (2) Under proper conditions a sinner is enabled by the Spirit to repent and believe (simultaneously) and then is 'regenerated' by the 'engrafted Word of God,' which process is regeneration. (3) Thus being completely saved by grace...the believer is to submit to believer's baptism. (4) The Christian has within himself the witness of full assurance, which depends...on God to keep His word. (5) The true Christian never doubts his assurance of full and eternal salvation. (6) If a professed Christian has doubts that his experience of grace was real, he is still is the bonds of sin. (7) If under favorable conditions the professed Christian has a blessed experience, accompanied by the joys of salvation, this is to be regarded as a genuine experience of grace (...regeneration), and the individual should submit to believer's baptism." - From the Encyclopedia of Southern Baptists, Vol. II, p. 825.

This controversy was centered in Mississippi, but affected other areas of the deep south where Martin had been influential as a preacher. Part of Martin's influence outside of Mississippi was due to his living in Texas and Georgia for about twelve years, and being the business manager of the Mississippi Baptist Record, paper of the Mississippi State Convention. According to writers from the Mississippi Baptist Association, both during and after the controversy, Martin was "a man of fine mental attainments...He has a wonderfully logical turn of mind, and when once his premises are admitted, one is led on step by step almost irresistibly to his conclusions...a man of...courageous convictions." - Abstract History of the Mississippi Baptist Association for One Hundred Years (1806-1906) by T. C. Schilling. The Mississippi Baptist Association was a local association, and should not be confused with the Mississippi Baptist Convention.

1893 Mississippi Baptist Association minutes: "Immediately after the sermon (by M. T. Martin, rlv) forty persons came forward and said that they then had peace with God and full assurance for the first time." Martin had just preached from the text Romans 1:16, and had preached a day or two before from II Thess. 2:13 and discussed "Election, work of the Spirit in preparing the heart, faith or belief of the truth, and good works as the fruits of faith." Perhaps the chief conflict came not from the doctrine itself, but from the proliferation of rebaptisms of these Baptists in their own churches. Martin preached before the Association again in 1894, but in 1895, the association would pass this resolution: "Whereas, it has come to the knowledge of this Association that rebaptism is practiced by the Galilee Baptist church (Martin's church, rlv) to an unlimited extent, unwarranted by the Scriptures, and, Whereas, there is no diminishing of this heresy -- on the contrary, a growing increase; therefore, be it Resolved, That this Association enters her solemn protest against any further practice of this heresy within her bounds, and we do solemnly declare our nonfellowship for it." It should be understood that the Mississippi Baptist Association was landmarkist and did practice "rebaptism," so the resolution was directed particularly at the "rebaptisms" caused by Martinism.

In 1896, the doctrinal views of Martin were discussed quite extensively, numerous resolutions were offered from varying angles, but most were tabled. Two were passed. First, to ask the editor of The Baptist Record to allow M. T. Martin and a representative brother from the other side to discuss all the points of the doctrines in question. R. A. Venable, of Meridian, MS, was selected to rebut Martin, but the discussion never materialized. The second resolution that passed stated: "Resolved, That, on the question of rebaptism of one who was formerly baptized in unbelief, it is the right of each church to act in her sovereign capacity." Evidently all were not satisfied, because in 1897, the association resolved that Martin's teachings were out of line with regular Baptist teaching and withdrew fellowship from him and his church. They also warned that any church that might call him as pastor would forfeit membership in the association. It seems for the most part, at least in Texas, Martinism had died down by the coming of the 20th century.

Have the doctrinal elements of "Martinism" survived among any group of Baptists, or among Baptists in a particular region?

Thursday, February 09, 2006

Video Church

At X Baptist Church in Technology, Texas, the "minister of music" had for a number of years provided all musical accompaniment by tape recording, and all special music was pre-recorded in order to edit mistakes and provide necessary enhancement. The pulpit minister, inspired by his example, determined to record a sermon for the big screen to show while he was away on vacation. He eagerly returned the next Sunday, hoping all had gone well. To his surprise, the pews were empty. He walked down the aisle and found the pews filled with CD players. The auditorium's silence was soon broken by a chorus of electronic amens!

I recently read Ray Van Neste's Video Church and Brett Maragni's Franchising Church blogs, which raise some significant questions. Invention and advance in technology have revolutionized our world. We possess technology unknown to our Baptist forebears -- cars, planes, televisions, telephones, computers, satellites. Instant communication, knowledge of world events and rapid transit abound. Few have stepped forward to advise us concerning these advances. Many advocate embracing all that technology has to offer, and in any manner that it can be used. What is lawful and what is expedient?

Very few folks would object to the use of devices to record sermons for the home-bound. Most would probably object to assembling Sunday after Sunday just to hear a pre-recorded sermon. Where is the "happy medium"? What is lawful and what is expedient?

I would suggest that the following questions might be helpful:

1. Will it violate the scriptural concept of the gathered church?
2. Will it hinder or help worship?
3. Will it introduce an element we would otherwise reject (in a non-technological format)?
4. Does it meet standards of propriety?
5. Does it substitute for and exclude something that God commanded?
6. Will it change any element of actual worship?
7. Will it complicate our worship?
8. Will it cause division?
9. Would it be good if applied generally?

Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Baptist "Name-Tags" - Are They Helpful?

Often the question is asked - "Which Baptist are you?" So someone responds, "I'm a ____ Baptist." Do we then know what that person believes?

How helpful are "name-tags"? It seems that you and the one to whom you are speaking must have the same concept of the meaning of the names in order for them to be helpful. Do the "name-tags" often used by Baptists (conservative, fundamental, historic, independent, landmark, liberal, missionary, moderate, primitive, reformed, regular, unaffiliated, etc.) have a narrow enough definition to convey an accurate meaning of what one really is? For example, to say one is "independent Baptist" among many of my acquaintances will conjure up the Hyles/Rice type of Baptist. Yet a number of "independent" Baptist churches with which I am familiar are "Primitive" Baptists - almost the exact opposite end of the spectrum. Even to say one is SBC, BBF, etc., while identifying with which body one is affiliated, probably does not really tell much about what the individual believes.

"Name-tags" -- What do you all think? Are they helpful? Are they confusing? Are they divisive?

Singing at Baylor

Baylor Sacred Harp Singing

Saturday February 11, 2006

To be held in the Great Hall, Truett Theological Seminary at Baylor University in Waco, Texas.


Singing will be from the 1991 Edition of the Denson Revision of The Sacred Harp


A singing school/orientation will be held from 9:15 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.; the singing will be held from 10:00 a.m. until around 3:00 p.m., with appropriate breaks for lunch, etc.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Worship

"Worship is bowing all that we are before all that God is." - Gary Parrett, Southampton, MA, from Biblical Training.org

"True worship can only be directed to the true God through Jesus Christ the Mediator, in and by God the Holy Spirit." - Brian Schwertley, Haslett, MI Public Worship of God

"Worship is the adoration flowing forth from a heart which is fully assured of the excellency of Him before whom it bows, expressing its profoundest gratitude for His unspeakable Gift." - Arthur W. Pink, (1886-1952) Worship

"God is both the Subject and the Object of our worship." - Gary Parrett

"God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth." - John 4:24

"How pleasant, how divinely fair,
O Lord of hosts, Thy dwellings are!
With long desire my spirit faints
To meet th’assemblies of Thy saints.

Bless’d are the saints who sit on high
Around Thy throne of majesty;
Thy brightest glories shine above,
And all their work is praise and love.

Bless’d are the souls who find a place
Within the temple of Thy grace;
There they behold Thy gentler rays,
And seek Thy face, and learn Thy praise." Isaac Watts, 1719

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Jesus as the criterion

In the year 2000 when the Southern Baptist Convention revised the Baptist Faith and Message, there was quite a controversy over removing "(t)he criterion by which the Bible is to be interpreted is Jesus Christ" (which wasn't in the original 1925 BF&M). The sentence evidently meant different things to different people. It seemed to be "anathema" to the more conservative, while particularly "holy" to those on the liberal end of the spectrum. Some who held "Jesus as the criterion" denied what many Christians would consider the most fundamental of beliefs.

If the criterion by which the Bible is to be interpreted is Jesus Christ, does that mean:
(1). Since Jesus said that the flood came in the days of Noah, we should believe that it did?
(2). Since Jesus said that Jonah was 3 days and 3 nights in the whale's belly, we should believe that he was?
(3). Since Jesus said that Abel 's blood was shed, we should believe that it was?
(4). Since Jesus said that Sodom was destroyed, we should believe that it was?

If the creation account and surrounding stories (i.e. Cain & Abel) are myths (um, I mean allegories), then what lesson would we learn from Jesus implying that Abel was just as real as Zacharias the son of Barachias? (Mt. 23:35). That he really was a person? That we shouldn't undermine the faith of people in their fables? That Jesus didn't know that Abel wasn't really a person? Either way, it would appear that some of the loudest proponents of "Jesus as the criterion" have a little problem.

Nevertheless, there is an issue of dealing with these "stories" in relation to Jesus' use of them. It would seem that there are three possibilities: [1] Jesus was aware that the referenced people and/or incidents were historical, [2] Jesus was NOT aware that the referenced people and/or incidents were not historical, [3] Jesus was aware that the referenced people and/or incidents were not historical. If Jesus were not aware that the referenced people and/or incidents were not historical, perhaps we could forgive him for referencing the stories as if they were. But then it would be hard to accept His claims of deity. If Jesus were aware that the referenced people and/or incidents were not historical, and yet referenced them with no disclaimer, it should at least bring in question why any Christian who doesn't accept their historicity doesn't just use them for lessons and not destroy the confidence of the people in them. But isn't it most reasonable that the Lord of glory KNEW the history and told the truth as He knew it?!

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Dependence on Christ

Total Dependence on Christ, (Long Meter)

My faith in weak, my knowledge small;
But for Thy grace, O Lord, I fall.
What I should do, that I forget;
What I should not, I do still yet.

Slow to give thanks, quick to complain --
I hate the sun and curse the rain.
When times are hard, then do I faint;
My heart is frail, I start to pant.

I’m falling fast, hope seems to flee;
But still Thy hand is holding me.
You lift me up 'til heaven I see --
Oh, glorious thought! oh, mystery.

The gracious lot that I am thine
Humbles my pride and soothes my mind.
Oh, precious Lord, my God and Friend,
On Thee alone I must depend.

(© 1992, by author) permission granted for use with proper credit of author and a suggested mention of this site.