As the cultural wars intensify, here are some links that will assist you:
Suicide – Following the suicide of well-known pastor Rick Warren’s son last week, there has been an explosion of articles on depression, mental illness, and suicide. David Murray offers two great columns on this, first with his own “7 Questions about Suicide and Christians” and then with a wisdom-balanced guest column by John Koopman on “Pastoral Thoughts on Depression.” For further links on many of the better posts on the internet, see Justin Taylor’s “Suicide, Mental Illness, Depression, and the Church.”
Gay Marriage - With all the attention this issue is getting, how important it will be for the church to speak with Scriptural authority. Rick Philips responded to a call against doing this in his post “Bill O’Reilly, Gay Marriage, and the Bible.” He then responded further with “Follow-up to Bill O’Reilly, Gay Marriage, and the Bible.” Read more
Like coming upon a car accident with injuries, for some reason it always jars me when I read the following in the Old Testament. “You shall not boil a young goat in its mother’s milk” (Deuteronomy 14:21; also Exodus 23:19; 34:26). Something about the very thought of this just makes me go “Yuck!”
It is not just that I do not like goat’s milk, which I do not. Recently the men had a discussion around the table at Fellowship Lunch about goat’s milk. Words like “brown” and “smelly” and even “mucous-like consistency” were used to describe it. I know some out there surely like goat’s milk, but there were no fans around that table. No, it is not the milk per se, but the way it is being used that is disgusting. What is it about this verse that makes the very idea revolting?
Recently my daughter Emory, a freshman nursing student at Purdue University, traveled through the night with friends to attend an event in Washington D.C. Upon her return, after I listened to her describe her experience over the phone in the tears and raw emotion of uncalloused youth, I asked her to put her thoughts into writing. They follow below.
The agonizing cries, which can only proceed from the most tortured of human souls, pierced the silence of my imagination. I could almost smell the reek of unwashed, decaying, and burning human flesh. Haunted figures and hollowed eyes presented themselves before me wherever I turned. There was no escape from the overwhelming sense that I was experiencing no small taste of hell.
Such were the thoughts and emotions which flooded over me as I walked through the National Holocaust Museum in our nation’s capital. After being confronted with the acute depravity of mankind, museum visitors are quoted saying, “This can never be allowed to happen in any form again.” We leave appalled, but comforted with the fact that we would never participate in such horrific evil. We think that our nation is so much more advanced and we have come so far as a society. Read more
Many thanks to Barry York, James Faris and Nathan Eshelman – and by extension to Dr. Joel Beeke! – for your heartfelt articles pertaining to the national elections (forgive me if I missed any authors!). Thanks for being willing to step into the virtual minefield of this volatile topic with the courage of your convictions as well as the kindness and humility which demonstrate your sincere love for Christ and desire to serve Him. Thanks for leading by example in ensuring that Gentle Reformation is able to address fiery topics with the fruit of the Spirit.
Now that the election is over, Read more
Once again a pro-life candidate has found himself in a media firestorm for his answer to a question about abortion. Though it may be too late for this election go-around, how about a little pastoral help from Jesus on how to answer it?
Richard Mourdock, running for U.S. Senate here in Indiana, was asked about abortion at a debate last week. Though the specific case of conception taking place from a rape was not part of the question, Mourdock, perhaps anticipating that and wanting to clarify his position, answered in part, “Life is a gift from God…and even when life begins in that horrible situation of rape, that it is something that God intended to happen.” That last phrase was understood by some and certainly twisted by others to portray Mourdock as indicating he believed rape met with divine approval. Though I, as others, do not believe that was the intent of his remark, this one sentence could do irreparable damage to his campaign. Mourdock himself recognized the remark was unfortunately stated, saying about it as he tries to move on that “you cannot put toothpaste back in the tube.”
So how should pro-lifers answer the question, “Do you believe abortion should be allowed in the case of rape or incest?” Three short principles from our Lord’s life can guide us. Read more
How often have you read the news and wondered, perhaps aloud: “Has the world gone insane!?” The answer to that questions is Yes…Yes we have. Read more