Thursday, February 27, 2014


The posting of links does not constitute an endorsement of the sites linked, and not necessarily even agreement with the specific posts linked.

* Escaping the Prison of the Self  -- "In the end, they become merely the medium through which he increasingly adores himself..."
* Gun Control and the Constitution: Should We Amend the Second Amendment? -- "These days, an awful lot of those people, the vast majority of whom obey the law and pay their taxes, like their guns and intend to keep them."
* How Christianity gave us gay marriage -- "Aren't the most committed Christians the most passionate defenders of traditional marriage and hence the most ardent opponents of permitting gay couples to marry?"
* Mt. Zion Sacred Harp Singing Minutes 1908-1924 Handwritten minutes of the Mt. Zion Sacred Harp Convention
* McDonald’s employee fired after she paid to feed first responders -- "...when Heather showed up for her next shift, she was fired after 8 years of working for the company. She was told it was because she swore at a superior..."
* Not Quite Two Cultures -- "Headlines regularly illustrate divides between science and religion over issues such as evolution, which many evangelicals reject."
* Rand Paul vs. Glenn Beck -- "The End of Republicans and Democrats (And Your Libertarian Future)"

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

First things first

"In my opinion, it is far more important (and is prerequisite) to recover a meaningful idea of church membership before trying to repair what has happened to our theology of the ordinances. It is difficult to make lasting and meaningful repair to the crack over the doorway before addressing the problems in the foundation." -- Bart Barber

Saturday, February 22, 2014

The Saint's Inheritance

Joseph Hart's hymn, The Saint's Inheritance, is in an unusual meter that I find intriguing --

l. Perfect holiness of spirit
Saints above,
Full of love,
With the Lamb inherit.

2. This inheritance, believer,
Faith alone
Makes thy own,
Safe and sure for ever.

3. True, ’twas thine from everlasting;
But the bliss
Of it is
Known to thee by tasting.

4. Though thou here receive but little;
Scarce enough
For the proof
Of thy proper title;

5 Urge thy claim through all unfitness;
Sue it out,
Spurning doubt;
The Holy Ghost’s thy witness.

6. Cite the will of his own sealing;
Title good,
Signed with blood,
Valid and unfailing.

7. When thy title thou discernest,
Humbly then
Sue again
For continual earnest.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

A Parting Song

William Gadsby's Selection, No. 501    7s     John Newton
At Parting. Acts 18. 21; 1 Cor. 4. 19

1 For a season called to part,
  Let us now ourselves commend
  To the gracious eye and heart
  Of our ever-present Friend.

2 Jesus, hear our humble prayer,
  Tender Shepherd of thy sheep;
  Let thy mercy and thy care
  All our souls in safety keep.

3 In thy strength may we be strong;
  Sweeten every cross and pain;
  Give us, if we live, ere long,
  Here to meet in peace again.

4 Then, if thou thy help afford,
  Ebenezers shall be reared;
  All our souls shall praise the Lord,
  Who our poor petitions heard.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Various links

The posting of links does not constitute an endorsement of the sites linked, and not necessarily even agreement with the specific posts linked.

* A Journey Through the Tithe -- Jim Ward's blog
* Barring It All, Part 1 -- "I wouldn’t say the rhythm is mis-anything, any more than I would say that shape-note harmonies are 'incorrect'."
* How to Get Hacked in 5 Exciting Steps  -- "Choose an easy password."
* Spartanburg man died trying to save son in massive house fire -- "Family members said Michael Cothran gave his life while trying to save his 9-year-old son Dylan."
* Salem Baptist Association, 1886 -- Old Baptist minutes
* Uncle Tom Denson’s Last Lesson: Observations and Impressions of a Son -- "...the article is a poignant account of the last lesson Pappy Denson led."
* Whoop! One of the world's oldest Aggies turns 102 -- "Mike Dillingham graduated Texas A&M in 1935 and was one of the first students in the petroleum engineering program."

Monday, February 17, 2014

W. C. Hafley and We'll Meet Beyond the Grave

Some of the following words were used by W. C. Givens for the song "We'll Meet Beyond the Grave" (344, Cooper Edition, Sacred Harp). The words were written by Winston Cornelius Hafley and first appeared the the song book Our Song Wreath by J. B. Vaughan (published by A. J. Showalter & Co., Dalton, Ga., 1885). The next year it appeared in Showalter's book Work and Worship (A. J. Showalter & Co., Dalton, Ga., 1886) and in Class, Choir and Congregation in 1888. I have not located those first two books, but have tried to create what might be the original text from the later appearances -- in Tears and Triumphs: for Revivals, Sunday School and the Home (L. L. Pickett, M. W. Knapp, Jno. R. Bryant, Columbia, SC: 1894) under the title "Beyond the Vale" (music by Hafley) and in Pearls of Truth in Song: for Sabbath Schools, Prayer and Praise Meetings (S. J. Oslin; L. G. McClendon; J. H. Ruebush; Ruebush, Kieffer & Co. Dayton, VA: 1890) under the title "All Sighing Will Cease" (music by I. P. Farlow).

1. Beyond the golden sunset sky,
Beyond the rolling wave,
Beyond each earthly tear and sigh,
We'll meet beyond the grave.

We shall meet (yes, we'll meet)
We shall meet (yes, we'll meet)
We'll meet in that home of love;
We shall meet meet to part no more.
We shall meet (yes, we'll meet)
We shall meet (yes, we'll meet)
We'll meet in that home of love;
We shall meet meet to part no more.

2. Beyond these pangs that trial bring, ("parting" in CCC 1888)
Beyond the cruel vale, ("this earthly vale, CCC)
We'll meet where joys eternal spring,
And love shall never fail.


3. Beyond the moments passing fleet, (this stanza not in CCC)
Beyond earth's gloomy night,
Our loved and lost we soon shall meet
In glorious realms of light


4. Our refuge is the Lord our God,
His life for us He gave,
He gave that life that we might live,
And He alone can save.


5. Then as we journey let us sing,
Sing of His pow'r to save;
Sing how He burst the bars of death,
And triumphed o'er the grave.

W. C. Hafley, author, composer and teacher; born in McMinn County, Tenn., Sept. 28th, 1839; educated in the common schools of his native county, but being a great lover of books, earnestly sought to improve himself by the reading of books, spending his evenings studying "Kirkam's Grammar" and the Bible, while listening to his father playing "Arkansaw Traveler," "Fisher's Hornpipe," etc., on a well-worn violin; served in the Confederate Army, but so well had he spent his time with his books in his tent that on his return he as called to take charge of a school, which profession he followed for fifteen years, and in 1883 was elected superintendent of schools in his native county; attended a session of the S.N.M.I., held at Dalton, Ga., the year after the principal of the school located there; has contributed to many song books, and is one of the associate authors of "Hymns of Glory" and "Gospel Melodies;" his "Sketches by the Wayside," a prose and poetical work, is  very popular; resides in Atlanta, Ga. (page 283 in The Best Gospel Songs and Their Composers, A. J. Showalter, 1904)
Some sources give September 2 rather than September 28 as the date of birth, and Blount County, Tennessee rather than McMinn County as the place of birth. W. C. Hafley was the son of Frankford Washington Hafley. He married Elizabeth Frances Blevins in 1868 in McMinn County, Tennessee. They had seven children. In the 1900 Atlanta, Fulton County, Georgia, Census Hafley is listed as a "Dealer in Music". He died May 4, 1904, in Atlanta of a gunshot wound, and is buried at the Westview Cemetery, Atlanta, Fulton County, Georgia. He was a member of the Christian Church.

Sunday, February 16, 2014


"Without music, life would be a mistake." -- Friedrich Nietzsche

"The best way to cheer yourself up is to try to cheer somebody else up." -- Mark Twain

"We don’t use people to get ministry done, we use ministry to get people done." -- Matt Svoboda

"Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened." -- Dr. Seuss

"He who knows best knows how little he knows." -- Thomas Jefferson

"The spaces between your fingers were created so that another's could fill them in." -- Unknown

"God does not create a lock without its key & God does not give you problems without its solutions! TRUST HIM." -- Unknown

Saturday, February 15, 2014


The posting of links does not constitute an endorsement of the sites linked, and not necessarily even agreement with the specific posts linked.

* 5 misconceptions about Catholics and abortion -- "The Catholic position on sexual health is more nuanced than critics suggest."
* Does Faith = Hate? -- "Refusing despair is a powerful political weapon. If we don’t keep fighting, we are not going to be tolerated."
I Love a Church That Sings Badly -- "I am drawn toward a church that sings poorly and am a little suspicious of a church that sings really well."
* Is opposing gay marriage the same as being a racist? -- "As for gay marriage and anti-discrimination, Chotiner appears not to recognize that his own flippant views — which are very widely held among secular liberals — pose a very real threat to the religious freedom of millions of his fellow citizens."
* No, Christianity Is Not Bad for Marriage -- "Are religious conservatives really divorcing more than religious liberals, or more than people who have no religious affiliation at all?"
* Teen Who Survived Parachute Malfunction Remembers Being 'Scared' -- "...the lessons she has taken from the incident are more personal. She says she now has a stronger belief in God, and a renewed commitment to follow her dream to join the medical profession."
* The Anabaptists -- "Their emphasis on adult baptism, upon profession of faith, as part of commitment to be a disciple, and to form into a fellowship of discipleship distinguished the Anabaptists from both the Lutherans and the Reformed, not to mention the Catholics."
The End of Charity: How Christians are (not) to 'Remember the Poor' -- "...any attempt to construe "remember the poor" as a "church politics" strategy separated from the gospel itself is problematic."
* What do conservative Catholics want from Pope Francis? -- "What the second group of conservatives want is very different — and much more interesting."

Friday, February 14, 2014

The Bible must be wrong...

...It couldn't be the scientists.

Yes, that's right, archaeologists at a much greater distance from the events than the authors who recorded them have determined that the appearance of camels in Genesis is evidence of the authors' distance from history. The Yahoo article notes, "New research using radioactive-carbon dating techniques shows the animals [i.e. camels, rlv] weren't domesticated until hundreds of years after the events documented in the Book of Genesis." Archaeologists "have used radiocarbon dating to pinpoint the moment when domesticated camels arrived in the southern Levant." Assuming their radiocarbon dating is correct, what the discovery "pinpoints" at most is the arrival of the camels they dated in the digs they dug. The fact that some camels were domesticated in the 10th century BC and some camels were wild thousands of years earlier does not prove that no camels were domesticated in the days of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (circa 2000 BC). Camels are mentioned in biblical stories about the patriarchs, Abraham, et al. They are first mentioned in the story of Abram and Sarai in Egypt (Genesis 12), and next in the story of finding a wife for Isaac (Genesis 24).

So, as Joel Baden asks, Will the camel discovery break the Bible's back? The AFTAU article "Finding Israel's First Camels," highlights two problems for biblicists: "In addition to challenging the Bible's historicity, this anachronism is direct proof that the text was compiled well after the events it describes."

1. The text was compiled well after the events it describes.
2. The Bible is historically inaccurate.

To the first problem, I would merely mention that even the most fundamental and conservative Bible students believe the Genesis account was written well after the events described. If the Pentateuch were written by Moses, it would have been written 2500 years after the events of the first chapters in Genesis, and nearly 500 years after the days of Abraham.

To the second problem, this finding does not prove that the statements about camels in Genesis 12 and thereafter are inaccurate. This is a logical fallacy. Again I would mention that what it does prove, at best, is that some camels were domesticated in the 10th century BC, and that some were still wild years before this. Clearly, it doesn't offer any proof for the camels in the Genesis account, but it does not disprove them either.

Joel Baden -- neither scientist nor fundamentalist -- in explaining the biblical writer's anachronistic mistake, wrote, "Without any evidence to the contrary, it is perfectly natural to assume that things have always been the way that they are now." Funny that the very radiometric dating method that "proves" this anachronism also assumes that things have always been the way that they are now.

The camel problem is mainly a problem for those who already do not believe the Bible, though it might "overthrow the faith of some". Those who do believe the Bible will "continue to keep that which is committed to thy trust, avoiding profane and vain babblings, and oppositions of science falsely so called." God was here before the camels or the archaeologists. He knows what He meant when He inspired the writers. Human understanding of this world is fallible and changeable. God's understanding of science, the world and camels is infallible, unchangeable and not subject to error.

Each life is like a song

A life is like a song we write
In our own tone and key,
Each life we touch reflects a note
That forms the melody.
We choose the theme and chorus
Of the song to bear our name,
And each will have a special sound --
No two can be the same.
So when someone we love departs,
In memory we find
Their song plays on within the hearts
Of those they leave behind.

--Author Unknown

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Quotin Five

"I used to wish that I could see pictures with my hands as I do statues, but now I do not often think about it because my dear Father has filled my mind with beautiful pictures, even of things I cannot see. If the light were not in your eyes, dear Mr. Brooks, you would understand better how happy your little Helen was when her teacher explained to her that the best and most beautiful things in the world cannot be seen nor even touched, but just felt in the heart. Every day I find out something which makes me glad." -- Helen Keller, letter to Reverend Phillips Brooks

"What's for you won't go by you." -- Scottish Christian saying

"There is too much preaching about what is wrong and what you can/should do to fix it. We need more preaching about what is wrong and what God has already done to fix it." -- Copied

"The love of God -- ain't nobody understood it yet!" -- Unknown

"When you're old and gray someday, will you countenance form a glow or a growl, will your face have a smile or a scowl?" -- Unknown

Wednesday, February 12, 2014


The posting of links does not constitute an endorsement of the sites linked, and not necessarily even agreement with the specific posts linked.

* 6 Foods You're Eating Wrong -- "You can easily get an egg out of its shell by blowing on it." (If you eat wings, the how to eat wings tip is worth the 2 minutes to watch this.)
* An A Posteriori Cessationist Considers Evidence for A Priori Cessationism -- "Spiritual gifts functioned to validate the eyewitness testimony of those who received the gospel directly from the Lord Jesus."
* Graves' discovery affects Mississippi medical school's plans -- "Future progress for the state's longtime medical school has collided with the ghosts of Mississippi's past — the discovery of a 1,000 bodies buried on its campus and the likelihood of more."
* How the Civil War taught us to deal with the business of death -- "There was absolutely no structure in place on how to identify or how to handle thousands of dead soldiers."
* Janet Paschal Honored By Comfort Care Hospice Of Alabama -- "For the past five years Janet has been heavily involved with so many different activities Comfort Care has sponsored to help various communities throughout the state of Alabama."
* Mississippi Most Religious State, Vermont Least Religious -- "Gallup classifies Americans as very religious if they say religion is an important part of their daily lives and that they attend religious services every week or almost every week."
* The Strange Thing about Strange Fire: A Review of Strange Fire by John MacArthur -- "Strange Fire is John MacArthur’s critique of the excesses of what he terms 'the Charismatic Movement'."

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Hero worship and celebrity status clergy

Most dictionaries define "hero worship" as something like "foolish or excessive admiration of someone." Our society is filled with hero worship -- just think sports and movie stars. Churches may be quick to condemn this while celebrating their own style of hero worship. It is not wrong to admire someone, to do as the Bible says "render honour to whom honour is due." But often this admiration becomes unholy, and all that the "hero" does is admirable -- regardless of what he or she does. Very often this in making a pastor or Christian leader the object of one's undue admiration, and justifying with ideas of "pastoral authority" and "touch not God's anointed." The truth is that the human soul cannot withstand such admiration and is lifted up with pride. It is destructive to the person admired and often devolves into the basest of action towards the admirers. May God deliver us all from such.

This morning's links contain stories of one such case.

From Gothard to good health

The posting of links does not constitute an endorsement of the sites linked, and not necessarily even agreement with the specific posts linked.

Bill Gothard, Sexual Predator -- "It was very common among Gothard followers for parents to send their teen and twenty-something daughters to work for Gothard, and remains so today..."
But there is a problem -- "In scripture, there is a richness of response to evil and suffering, of which the assertion of divine sovereignty is simply one part.  Elihu is correct on sovereignty, yet God still needs to speak to Job because an assertion of sovereignty on its own is not enough."
Children and parents 'unaware of Bible stories' -- "Surveys for the Bible Society found almost three in 10 young people were unaware the story of the birth of Jesus came from the Bible."
Recovering Grace -- "Shining light on the teachings of Bill Gothard, IBLP and ATI"
The Theology Research Paper Title Generator -- I hate coming up with book titles, so I found this humorously helpful.
William Walker: Carolina Contributor to American Music -- "...according to one of Walker’s Philadelphia publishers, nearly 600,000 copies of Southern Harmony had been sold by 1866, an astronomical figure for the South at this time."
Where are the Laments? -- "Many Christians it seems have no clue that a whole Bible book is titled 'Lamentations'."
* Why You Need to Put Your Brain on a Fitness Plan, Too -- "Ready to make your brain smarter? Here are a few scientifically proven ways to do it."

Monday, February 10, 2014

Children's church or children in church?

"Children's church is a problem, but it is not the problem. It is a symptom of much larger problems." -- R. Scott Clark

Sunday School has a long history and has become almost a standing ordinance in most Baptist churches. The idea of "Sunday School" (or "Sabbath School") harks back to the mid-1700s, with the founding of Sunday Schools "as we know them" associated with Robert Raikes. In 1781 Raikes, the editor of the Gloucester Journal, felt a need to prevent children in the slums falling into crime. He thought the answer was education -- religious, moral and social. The earliest Sunday Schools operated as independent entities, but gradually they were made part of the program of the churches. By the early 1930s in the United States Sunday Schools by and large had made a transition to part of the regular Sunday morning services.

This writing investigates a more recent measure directed at children's ministry -- the "children's church". It is a 20th century phenomenon probably no older than 60 years. "Children's church" is built on the principle that the regular preaching service is directed toward adults and that children need something more age-appropriate, something which is "kid friendly", presented in a way they can understand. The mix usually is designed to "learn about God while having fun." Games and snacks are often attached to the "age-appropriate" music and lesson. A co-dependent principle is that removing them from the main worship service allows adults/parents to worship without distraction. Some urge this with a twist on Matthew 19:14, saying that children are an important part of God's kingdom and that churches should not hinder them by expecting them to sit still and be quiet in “Adult Church”.

A church should want parents of young children to be present in church services. That same church should also want those children to be present in church services. Some want the parents to attend, but without the distraction of their young children. Much of the "children's ministry" and "children's church" ideas are societally driven rather than biblically driven. We worship at the altar of what is convenient. Someone has said that we often worship a worshipful atmosphere more than we worship God.

Objections to children in church
* Having children in the adult worship service is too distracting for the parents, and it is too boring for the kids.
* By keeping the children in the adult service, they learn to hate the worship service.
* We need to speak "age-appropriately" so children can understand the message.
* Adult service hinders children, and Jesus said not to hinder them.

Biblical examples
The model of having children assembled with or learning along with the adults is a pattern that seen throughout the Scriptures.
Deuteronomy 6:6-9; 11:18-21 teaches parental diligence and responsibility at all times.
Deuteronomy 6:20 Children will see the observance of testimony of God and ask "What meaneth these?" How will they see and ask if they are not there?
Deuteronomy 12:7, 12, 18; 16:9-11 Households participate together observing the statutes of God
Deuteronomy 29:10-12 All present before God to enter into covenant
Deuteronomy 31:10-13 Children gathered with households to hear the reading of the law
2 Chronicles 20:13 Judah brought their little ones to the fast proclaimed by Jehoshaphat
Ezra 10:1  Men, women AND children assemble with Ezra as he weeps and prays
Joel 2:16 A fast is proclaimed and all the people are to gather, even "those that suck the breasts".
Ephesians 6:4; Colossians 3:20-21 That children are directly addressed assumes they were in the assembly hearing the reading of Paul's letter.

The benefits of children in church
Children benefit from being in the meeting between God and His people. They are in the presence of Christians of various ages rather than only their own peer group. They see how their parents worship and learn that this is an important part of their parents' lives. They are exposed to togetherness rather than the societal trend of family fragmentation. It ought to be the goal of every church to reverse this trend rather than reinforce it. Adults benefit from children being in their meetings. They are reminded that it is not all about themselves, that they have a calling to train up children, and that gospel is to be passed on. We are reminded that life, families -- and God's family -- are made up of the old and the young.

Practical considerations
Operating a nursery and/or children's church takes adults and young people out of the worship service. It violates the injunction of Hebrews 10:25 to not forsake the assembling of ourselves together. Even if young children are not church members and not subject to the injunction, those that we separate to chaperone and instruct them are. Behaving is worship service is an important step in training young children. Both parents and children miss the experience when children are whisked away to nursery or children's church.

As age-specific "youth ministry" has blossomed so has the loss of young people in the church. Could there be a correlation? The response to the loss of young people has most often been to urge the doubling-down on more "youth ministry" and different (and more extravagant) kinds of it. And yet the decline continues. Perhaps our solution is part of the problem?

The Bible knows little or nothing of age-specific ministry, age-specific music or age-specific worship experiences. These are the makings of our cultural views of expedience and are a detriment to the edifying of ourselves and our children. Even very young children recognize hymns and imitate other actions they see and hear. Someone has said, "We have kids in church just as we have kids at the dinner table: not because of their manners but because we love them and they are a part of our family." Far too often in our society children not valued highly. Some approaches to dealing with children are simply scheduled selfishness and codified convenience. Parents who will not discipline their children can be selfish too. They ought not let their children run wild in church meetings. They should respect others who are present. But church members ought to be indulgent, prayerful and helpful as young parents try to train their children to be in church services. It is a learning experience for all concerned. If parents enforce commands at home, then the child in church is simply learning an extension of that same principle.

Finally, we must consider how this meshes with other substantial teaching of the Scriptures, such as soteriology, ecclesiology (corporate worship, the gathered community, church membership, etc.), parental authority and responsibility. I will hope to address this in the near future.

Some things others have written
Small Children at Worship Services – Why Are They Present?
Children in Worship–Let’s Bring it Back
Where Should Children Worship?
Seen and Not Heard in Church
Do Children Destroy the Church’s Worshipful Atmosphere?
Children’s Church is the Church
The Mystery of Children's Church
Re-Thinking 'Children's Church'

Sunday, February 09, 2014

Singing related links

The posting of links does not constitute an endorsement of the sites linked, and not necessarily even agreement with the specific posts linked.

* Bobby Jones: Gospel Music Legend Reveals Painful Past -- "Every Sunday morning for the last 33 years, the soul-stirring sound of spiritual music from 'Bobby Jones Gospel' has filled millions of homes across America."
* Jim Hill Inducted Into Ohio Gospel Music Association's Hall Of Fame -- "Chairman Tony Rankin and Vice-Chair Darrell Webb presented Jim with a trophy honoring him for his contributions to Gospel music, most notably being the songwriting effort of 'What a Day That Will Be'."
* Meter, Rhythm, and the Most Awkward Farewell -- "Normally, there is a relationship between the meter of a text and the rhythm of the tune chosen for that text. However, the same meter may be expressed in several different rhythms in different songs, or even within the same song."
* Music therapy improves coping skills in young cancer patients -- "A new study has found that a form of music therapy, which involves writing song lyrics and producing videos, is beneficial in helping young cancer patients develop coping skills."
* Neville backs permanent all-singing fan section to boost Old Trafford atmosphere -- "Manchester United coach Phil Neville has called for the implementation of a permanent singing section at Old Trafford."
* “Oh, What a Happy Time”: The NEA National Heritage Fellows Concert in Washington D.C. -- "This tradition has been part of my life and in my family for many years—at least six generations."
* Shape Notes, Billings, and American Modernisms -- "In the decades preceding the American Revolution, a style of native sacred music developed in the colonies. Protestant churches across New England began singing from books of hymn tunes published in America by local musicians like William Billings, Jeremiah Ingalls, and Andrew Law, rather than the European standards of previous songsters."
* Stitched Together: S. M. Denson’s Alto Part for “The Last Words of Copernicus” -- "Perhaps the most instantly recognizable musical feature of” Sarah Lancaster’s song 'The Last Words of Copernicus' was not in the composer’s original three-part setting."
* The Color and the Shape: Where the Brooklyn Youth Chorus Meets Sacred Harp -- " order to capture the energy of shape note singing in performance, the Brooklyn Youth Chorus singers first had to incorporate Sacred Harp's distinctive technique into their already established vocal training."
* What Do Music Educators Do When They Cannot Attend Conferences? -- "For the past ten years, the winter season has meant conference season for me."

Saturday, February 08, 2014

How wondrous are the works of God!

1. How wondrous are the works of God,
Displayed through all the world abroad!
Immensely great! Immensely small!
Yet one strange work exceeds them all.
2. He formed the sun, fair fount of light;
The moon, and stars to rule the night;
But night, and stars, and moon, and sun,
Are little works compared with one.
3. He rolled the seas and spread the skies;
Made valleys sink and mountains rise;
The meadows clothed with native green;
And bade the rivers glide between.
4. But what are seas, or skies, or hills;
Or verdant vales,or gliding rills,
To wonders man was born to prove?
The wonders of redeeming love!
5. 'Tis far beyond what words express,
What saints can feel,or angels guess;
Angels, that hymn the great I AM,
Fall down and veil before the Lamb.
6. The highest heavens are short of this,
'Tis deeper then than the vast abyss,
'Tis more than thought can e'er conceive,
Or hope expect, or faith believe.
7. Almighty God sighed human breath,
The Lord of life experienced death;
How it was done we can't discuss;
But this we know, 'twas done for us.
8. Blest with this faith then let us raise
Our hearts in love, our voice in praise,
All things to us must work for good,
For whom the Lord hath shed his blood.
9. Trials may press of every sort;
They may be sore; they must be short,
We now believe but soon shall view,
The greatest glories God can show.

By Joseph Hart (1712-1768)
The wonders of redeeming love.
The Christian's duty, exhibited in a series of hymns, 1791.

Friday, February 07, 2014

More links to boot

The posting of links does not constitute an endorsement of the sites linked, and not necessarily even agreement with the specific posts linked.

* Arctic's 'Layer Cake' Atmosphere Blamed for Rapid Warming
* Family's Home Raided in Texas, Children Confiscated - Germany Tyranny in Texas -- Generations Radio with Kevin Swanson
* Four Mistakes Preachers (Like Me) Make -- "Therapeutic preaching starts with the assumption that God exists primarily as a sort of free therapist who wants to help people face their challenges, overcome their hang-ups and/or deal with life more successfully."
* GasBuddy Study Finds Best Day for Motorists to Fill Up -- "A GasBuddy analysis released today tracked trends over the last four years showing what day of the week saw the cheapest gasoline price."
* How this family of four lives 'off the grid' in the middle of the desert -- "At a time when we carry computers in our pockets and our cars practically do the driving for us, a certain subset of people have willingly chosen to cut the cord on modern American life"
* Peyton Manning leaves crushing Super Bowl loss with reputation intact -- "At some point, though, at some level, what really matters about a man is how he treats people who hold no leverage over him..."
* Pure class: Sherman said Manning asked him about injured ankle after Super Bowl
* Report: US abortion rate at lowest since 1973 -- "...there were about 1.06 million abortions in 2011 — down from about 1.2 million in 2008."
Seen and Not Heard in Church -- "Where are the children?"
* Stitched Together: S. M. Denson’s Alto Part for “The Last Words of Copernicus” -- "Perhaps the most instantly recognizable musical feature of” Sarah Lancaster’s song 'The Last Words of Copernicus' was not in the composer’s original three-part setting."
* The Feds, the Supremes, Same-Sex Marriage and Utah -- "It is a shame Justice Kennedy had not read, or perhaps understood, the Court's 1885 Murphy v. Ramsey decision...Perhaps Justice Kennedy could explain why this is no longer a 'legitimate purpose'."
* The Unbreakable Super Bowl Records -- "Here are eight records that may never be topped -- or even matched -- in the biggest NFL game of the century every season."
* What does it mean that there is a right to “bear” guns? -- "Lyle Denniston looks at two Second Amendment cases under consideration at the Supreme Court later this month that would clarify questions posed by the National Rifle Association."
* What Obama still hasn't figured out about being president -- "This pen-and-phone business represents a pretty stunning admission from a president five years into his term – that he and his senior aides are still groping about for ways to wield the power of the office, and that they have essentially given up on legislating."

Thursday, February 06, 2014

Cagles and Clark

Cagle, Hazel Blanch Morris was born in Clay County, Alabama, the daughter of Arnslo Watson Morris and Mary Lillian Kelley. Elder Morris was a singing school teacher. She married William Kimzy "Kim" Cagle. They are buried at the Resthaven Memorial Gardens, Chambers County, Alabama. The tune Clark is based on a song from the Prince William Association of Primitive Baptist in South Carolina, which meeting the Cagles attended annually.  They brought this tune back with them and it became popular with the churches in Chambers County. An arrangement was made by Stanley Smith based on the tune the Cagles sang. It is named for Sacred Harp singer Don Clark of Chambers County, Alabama. Hazel was a strong tenor singer. Two siblings – Floy Morris Wilder and Wynelle Morris Birchfield – also sang Sacred Harp.
453a    Clark (with Kim Cagle & Stanley Smith)

Cagle, William Kimzy “Kim” was a native of Fulton County, Georgia.  He was the son of James Jackson “Jim” Cagle and Savilla Mae Cochran. Jim Cagle was a singing school teacher. His headstone at the Boiling Springs Primitive Baptist Church Cemetery reads, "A Great Teacher and Lover of Sacred Harp Singing." Kim married Hazel Morris, and after their marriage they lived in the metro-Atlanta area. There they worked and raised their family, then retired to a 160 acre farm near Hazel’s father in Chambers County, Alabama.  They spent much of their retirement time traveling to church meetings and Sacred Harp singings.  In Chambers County they attended Ephesus Primitive Baptist Church in Fairfax. Kim sang tenor.  He was not related to Alfred Marcus Cagle (See Steel, page 95).
453a    Clark (with Hazel Cagle & Stanley Smith)

Tuesday, February 04, 2014

Amicably quoted

"A burden is heavier if you think nobody shares it." -- Steve Brown

"Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the  difference." -- Robert Frost

"Man is certainly stark mad. He cannot make a worm, and yet he will be making gods by the dozens." -- Montaigne

"Rich bachelors should be heavily taxed. It is not fair that some men should be happier than others." -- Oscar Wilde

"Older men declare war. But it is youth that must fight and die. And it is youth who must inherit the tribulation, the sorrow, and the triumphs that are the aftermath of war." -- Herbert Hoover

"All that is gold does not glitter. Not all those who wander are lost." -- Tolkien

"Children's church is a problem but it is not the problem. It is a symptom of much larger problems." -- R. Scott Clark

Sunday, February 02, 2014

News from Sandy Valley: a personal devil

The body of Christ at Possum Creek called on the Sandy Valley congregation for the ordination of Newley Drewery, the young 40-something son of Deacon Drew Drewery. He had been teaching the Possum Creek saints for a couple of weeks and they sought this man of God to become their pastor.

The body of Christ at Sandy Valley duly assembled a presbytery to examine young Drewery and make recommendations to the congregation. They organized and set about the task. They heard his experience, his call to preach and his doctrinal views. All proceeded in order and the presbytery privately convened to discuss whether to recommend Newley's ordination. The young preacher had sailed smoothly through all points, save one nagging answer that the visiting ministers especially couldn't shake off. When asked if he believed in a "personal devil", Newley had answered "No." They were not sure they were ready to turn this young whipper-snapper loose on the bodies of Christ. They went round and round the question without resolution till Deacon Tal Goodnews intervened on his behalf. Said Tal, "I move his ordination. This is no great problem. After he's dealt with those hard-heads at Possum Creek for 6 months, he'll know there's a personal devil! (and maybe several devils, Tal chuckled within himself.)" Reverend Rube Askew, former minister at Possum Creek, shouted "Amen" and immediately seconded the motion. With clearer vision now, the presbytery cheerfully recommended Newley's ordination to body of Christ at Sandy Valley. Which they did.