Posts Tagged ‘ worldview ’

The Essential Edwards Collection for Half Off!

Here are two videos of Doug Sweeney and Owen Strachan talking about there great new books, The Essential Edwards Collection. For those of you who want to get copies you can get all 5 books for 50% over at wtsbooks between now and aug 2nd! Click here to get yours today!

Also we have read and reviewed three of the books so far:

Edwards on Heaven and Hell by Starchen and Sweeney

Jonathan Edwards, Lover of God by Starchen and Sweeney

Jonathan Edwards, The Good Life by Strachen & Sweeney

Advertisements

Book Review: Jonathan Edwards, “The Good Life” by Strachen & Sweeney

Owen Strachan and Doug Sweeney capture the heart and essence of Jonathan Edwards labor on the subject of: The Good Life. This quick short read (152 pages) is just what the church of Christ was in need of. God has used Edwards in monumental aspects to help inform, convict, and shepherd his flock for the nearly the past 300 years. Whether it was through his preaching, writing, or actions men and women had a better picture of who Jesus Christ is and the work in which He has done, is doing, and will complete.
The specific piece looks at Edwards labors on the idea that, “The Good Life” as God intended it to be is filled with JOYFUL OBEDIENCE to Him, Jesus Christ. Edwards contrast what culture speaks to as a “good life” with that from a biblical perspective in which the “Good Life” is focused solely on the will of God. His will is to us joy through Him. WOW and praise God! This is foreign thinking and takes supernatural power to accomplish.
Strachen & Sweeney unfold the heart of what Edwards saw God promise, desired, and commanded for us to have “The Good Life”. They walk through not only the abstract idea of this lofty pleasure, but also what it would look like practically day to day in the life of the believer.
I recommend this book for anyone, but especially if you have never read Jonathan Edwards this is a must read and a great introduction to him (he is not the easiest to pick up, read, and comprehend). Personally I believe how an individual responds to the question, “What is the Good Life”, will reveal the heart of their desires. If you are a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ then a biblical & eternal perspective is what should be saturated within us and spilling into all our conversations!

Be encouraged with the fact that God’s will is for His people to have, “The Good Life” but it’s solely achievable ‘by whom and for whom all things exist, Jesus Christ’ (Colossians 1:16 ’emphasis added’)

Read more on the authors:

Owen Strachen

Doug Sweeney

Grace and Peace,

Book Review; Jonathan Edwards, Lover of God by Starchen and Sweeney

Recommended

Starchen and Sweeney have Written a fine introduction to the life and thought of Jonathan Edwards. this short book provides a U2 fly over of the highlights of Edwards’ life is a strong showing. Brief but engaging, I found myself looking forward to reading more.

The authors serve the reader well by including application points att he end of each chapter in a winning effort to help you apply what they have drawn out of the life of Edwards. Additionally, the reader is served by a balanced, Truthful treatment of the facts of Edwards’ life. Good bad and ugly are discussed in this biographical sketch. this is not hero worship, nor is it a smearing of Edwards. What Starchan and Sweeney have done is find the middle road of truth and walked that tightrope. At times they have strong words for edwards, such as their discussion of his owning slaves and his interaction with his congregation over issues of salary. At other times they stand in the owe appropriate of contemplating the writings and life of this giant of the faith. Simply put Starchen and Sweeney don’t have any sour grapes, but also don’t pull any punches, either.

Another strength of this work is it gives you a working understanding of Edwards’ thought and life with out being exhaustive. I now know enough about him to be conversant, but I also, as a result of reading this book, want to go and learn more about Edwards.

Lastly, and what I feel is the most important thing that Starchen and Sweeney provide is an additional voice to that of John Piper on Edwards that is decidedly orthodox and evangelical. While we are indebted to piper for introducing so many of us to Edwards, Having another voice on the topic is helpful in expanding the insights we can gleam from the life and thought of Edwards.

Hebrews 6:1-8: Part 4 of 5; The Caution of Failure

III. The Caution (of failure)

After exhorting these Jewish believers to move on in the spiritual walk he makes a clear caution, a dire warning for those that fail to mature:

v 4-6 “For it is impossible to restore again to repentance those who have once been enlightened, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, if they then fall away, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harm and holding him up to contempt.”

This must have been like a shock for these childish, dull-of-hearing believers! I can just hear these Hebrew believers asking: “It’s impossible to restore again to repentance?!” “For who?” For us?!”

We might be tempted to do the same and jump to conclusions about what God’s intent was for this passage.

Let’s walk through it carefully.

We see it begins with an impossible work, one that the author of Hebrews tells us cannot be done (under certain conditions): the restoration to repentance. But of whom—these immature believers? No, I don’t believe that this passage tells us that these believers are in danger of losing their faith.

– We see that the author changes his usage of pronouns from “You” to “those.”

– As well the author has addressed them earlier in Hebrews as brothers—and not just any brothers—Holy brothers.

– And if we skip ahead to verse 9 we see the clearest indication that these specific verses are not directly addressing the state of the believers from verses 1 to 3—“Though we speak in this way, yet in your case, beloved, we feel sure of better things—things that belong to salvation.”

So whom is the author talking about? These verses refer to those who participate in the gospel outwardly (at least for a time) but inwardly have hardened their hearts and reject Christ.

And the author of Hebrews gives us 5 conditions that mark these people with the impossibility to restore them to repentance:

  1. they have once been enlightened (been shown the glory of the gospel)
  2. they have tasted of the heavenly gift and
  3. they shared in the Holy Spirit and
  4. they have tasted of the goodness of God and the powers of the age to come (they’ve sampled some of the benefits of the gospel and the church)
  5. and finally they have fallen away (wandered from the faith, rejecting Christ)

These descriptions reveal a person who participates in much of the benefits of the gospel but at the end of this they deny the gospel—they deny the work of Christ and put Him to death and hold Him high to open shame!

Let me ask you: if these people participate in such things—these sweet gospel benefits—but harden their hearts and reject the only living God, what end can there be but a soul who will not come close to repentance again.

I’m reminded of the words of Jesus in Matthew chapter 7 that talk about those who will come to the judgment seat of Christ and claim that they knew him and prophesied and cast out demons and did miracles in His name and he will say to them, in verse 23: “‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’”

You cannot find salvation in the works of flesh, even good and maybe even miraculous works. The heart must be brought to repentance for salvation!

To re-emphasize this severe caution, the author of Hebrews, back in chapter 6, now paints a word picture for us to help us better understand:

Vs 7-8: “For land that has drunk the rain that often falls on it, and produces a crop useful for those for whom it is cultivated, receives a blessing from God. But if it [the land] bears thorns and thistles, it is worthless and near [or soon] to being cursed, and its end is to be burned.”

The land here is us—men (and women) within the church—who receive the faithful rain of gospel teaching from God’s word. And there are only 2 responses that our land can have to this nourishing rain. A good crop—useful to the edification of the body of Christ, proving that the seed of the gospel has produced salvation. Or they produce thorns and thistles—they are completely useless and even harmful to the body. This worthless crop proves that they never had Christ at all and have only one end—to be judged apart from grace and condemned to the fires of hell.

And we must ask ourselves, what crop are we producing?

Is your crop worthless, revealing your denial of Christ? If so I caution you urgently to continue no more down this path of un-repentance. I beg of you, turn to the living God, Jesus Christ, and plead with Him for a heart of repentance toward your sin and rebellion towards Him, while there is still time! Do not continue to harden your hearts toward the crucified and risen Son of God! Your end will not be sweet if you continue in this way for there is only much weeping and gnashing of teeth at the end of this road you are traveling down!

But for those of you who, as you are watered by the Word of God and cultivated by God’s ministers, do see fruit, that accompanies salvation, springing forth from your hearts and minds and bodies—I praise God for you! And I encourage you, by the grace found only in Jesus Christ in the gospel, to press on towards fuller and deeper maturity! Sink your roots deep into the gospel. That you plumb the depths of the riches of God found in Jesus Christ—the author and perfector of our faith!

And be sobered by this passage, Christian brothers. Do not take lightly this salvation—for we did not attain it on our own accord but only according to the grace of God. Encourage one another to love and good deeds. Spur one another on towards maturity. Remind one another of the price paid for your salvation, and sanctification, and glorification—the blood of the only perfect lamb—Jesus Christ.

We’ll spend tommorrow working on how to apply this to our lives today as we move from jewish sandles into  flipflops of the modern man.

Free Christian Worldview DVD From R.C. Sproul

Renewing Your Mind is giving away Christian Worldview DVD for any size donation. The DVD contains twelve 30-minute messages covering the foll0wing:
  • Secularism
  • Existentialism
  • Humanism
  • Pragmatism
  • Positivism
  • Pluralism and Relativism
  • Hedonism
  • Science
  • Economics
  • Government
  • Art
  • Literature

  • Click here to get yours!

    Lecture of the Week; James Sire on Why Should You Believe Anything at All

    This week’s lecture comes from the Veritas Forum. The lecturer is James Sire and his topic is why we should believe anything at all. click here to listen or download.

    on the Indicative and the Imperative

    “In every other religion the indicative flows from the imperative. Which means, ‘because I do, therefore I am… because I do this, therefore I’m a child of God.’ But only in Christianity does the imperative flow from the indicative. ‘Because I am in Christ all these things, therefore I obey.’ Exactly the opposite.” – Tim Keller

    %d bloggers like this: