March 14th, 2015

mystical yearning for oneness

It is in the flow of life 6:58 AM Saturday morning. I am waking up to a new day. Carol is in the living room reading her Bible. This morning Carol meets with her nieces for breakfast. I volunteer at the Herrick District Public Library used books store from 10 AM till 1 PM today. Do not know what I will do when I get home. I most likely will take a nap since I have been not sleeping soundly lately.

Yesterday we left for Grand Rapids around 2:30 PM. We drove over to GR to meet with our oldest son and his wife/baby daughter for an early dinner at 4:30 PM. We first visited in Grand Rapids Argos Book Shop in East Grand Rapids. We have been visiting this used book store for 35 years. This used books store is no far from the Bible College Carol and I attended many years ago. I have been buying books at this used books store for years. Now that Caleb has moved to GR with his family every time we are in GR I can visit this used bookstore. I bought these two used books from Argos yesterday-

"Concrete" a novel by Thomas Bernhard (Translated From The German By David McLintock) (I read last year Thomas Bernhard's memoir titled, "Gathering Evidence.)

Thomas Bernhard

"The Runaway Soul" a novel by Harold Brodkey

Harold Brodkey

After visiting this used bookstore we drove over to Caleb, Emily and Josie's place. We hung out there till 8 o'clock PM. We got take out for dinner since Josie had to be fed and go to bed around 6 o'clock PM. Carol and I held Josie and I fed her dinner. We talked to Caleb and Emily. Family time. So the evening went by and then we left and drove home to Holland.

We went to bed around 9:30 PM.

music Fennesz 'Venice'

After music I read till late the novel "Bliss" by Peter Carey. Now it is another day to work out ones salvation with fear and trembling.

I will close to make myself some oatmeal. Existence keeps speeding by!
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative

Jonathan Edwards

It is in the flow of existence 2:14 PM Saturday afternoon. I got home from the library book nook around 1:15 PM. When I got home I ate lunch and wrote in my paper diary. Carol has been on our main computer doing paper work since I got home.

The library book nook was not busy today so read and wandered the books store. I mainly read from a book titled, "A Summer of Hummingbirds: Love, Art, and Scandal in the Intersecting Worlds of Emily Dickinson, Mark Twain, Harriet Beecher Stowe, & Martin Johnson Heade" by Christopher Benfey. I brought home these used books for our library from the book nook today-

"Resurrection" a novel by Tolstoy

"Science Is Culture" Edited by Adam Bly

"Room" a novel by Emma Donoghue

"The Debt to Pleasure" a novel by John Lanchester

I am tired, but not in the mood to lay down. I keep thinking about something I talked about with our daughter-in-law Emily yesterday. While Carol and Caleb were gone I was holding Josie while Emily was making soup. Emily mentioned that one of the doctor's she works with said to her that his hero was the 18th century American Pastor theologian Jonathan Edwards/the Great Awakening/Revival. I shared with Emily some of what I know about Jonathan Edwards and the Great Awakening. Years ago I was a student of Revivalism/the theology of Jonathan Edwards.

Jonathan Edwards Collection

The last book I read about Jonathan Edwards was titled, "The Theology of Jonathan Edwards" by Michael J. McClymond and Gerald R. McDermott.

I will not repeat all that Emily and I talked about but I just want to write on a reflection I have had on Church History/history or Revivalism. I am a student of Church History/American Church History etc. . .

In our conversation Emily asked me about Protestant Reformation/John Calvin/Martin Luther etc. . . (Right now I am reading these books that all relate to Church history, "We Believe in the Crucified and Risen Lord" Vol 3 [Ancient Christian Doctrine] and "Luke" New Testament III [Reformation Commentary On Scripture].)

I got out these two books-

"Dictionary of the Presbyterian & Reformed Tradition In America" General Editor D. G. Hart

"A Concise History Of Christian Thought" by Tony Lane

Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758)

Emily asked me about why Jonathan Edwards was fired by his congregation-the Half Way Covenant-goes back to Edward's grandfather Solomon Stoddard. "In 1748 Edwards had left his congregation in Northampton because of opposition from church members in his exclusion from the Lord's Supper those who had not experienced conversion".

Well I could go on and on about Jonathan Edwards and the Great Awakening etc. . . What I want to write down is that as one looks at Church History/history of Christianity there have been what is described as revivals or awakenings-one can not point to one time where there have been revivals or awakenings but throughout Church history the Holy Spirit as been working in the Church/among the people of God found in many different Christian traditions Catholic, Protestant, and Eastern Orthodox.

Sometimes certain Christians will zero in on one awakening like the Protestant Reformation and think there was no Church before the Protestant Reformation-but that is not true-there has always been a Church in the world/the holy universal/catholic Church. The Spirit of God has been working/reviving/reforming the Church since the beginning of the world. I think it is true there has always been Christians who leave a certain visible expression of Christianity that they believe to be not Christian-it is a fact that throughout Church History there have been expressions of Christianity that have become worldly or unbiblical-then there is a need for Christians to get back to the New Testament model of the Church-get back to the New Testament/the Bible-get back to living according to the teachings of the Bible-the Church can get sleepy or fall into materialism/worldliness and God the Holy Spirit awakens sleepy Christians/the Church and then there is renewal movement/a revival/a reformation-we are always striving to get back to the New Testament pattern of the Christian life/Church life. The Church is never at a stand still but constantly reforming-constantly striving to be more biblical-more true to the pattern of Scripture. This not only true for Protestants but Roman Catholics and Eastern Orthodox etc. . .

We can not as Christians point to one movement of the Spirit/reformation and say that was the purest expression of revivalism/reformation-Christians from all spiritual traditions are always calling other Christians back to the teachings of the Bible/Church tradition/the teachings of the Apostles/the Bible. The Spirit of God is right now powerfully moving/reviving/reforming the Church/the Body of Christ all over the world not just in America but in the Middle East/Russia/Asia/China etc.

Well more could be written but I will close to rest my brain.

"[1] I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called,
[2] With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;
[3] Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.
[4] There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;
[5] One Lord, one faith, one baptism,
[6] One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.
[7] But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.
[8] Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
[9] (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth?
[10] He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)
[11] And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
[12] For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
[13] Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:
[14] That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
[15] But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:" Ephesians 4:1-15
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative

sheep and goats

It is 10:37 PM Saturday night. I went to bed around 10:25 PM, but I got up to make some notes here to remind me to write about tomorrow morning. As I was laying in bed I was thinking more about what I said to our daughter-in-law about the 18th century American Theologian/Pastor Jonathan Edwards and the Great Awakening. I mentioned to Emily that Edwards wrote treatises where he sets forth true conversion in contrast to a false conversion. Tomorrow I want to go more into this subject. I want to set forth Scripture where its warns people about not being truly converted/false religion. Right now I need to go back to bed and hopefully tomorrow I will go more into this subject/mention Jonathan Edwards works on what is true religion/biblical Christianity.

The Bible/Old and New Testament is constantly calling people to examine themselves to discover if they are truly converted/one of God's elect sheep and not a goat. There are the children of God and there are the children of the devil.

"[24] Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:
[25] But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.
[26] But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.
[27] So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?
[28] He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?
[29] But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.
[30] Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.
[31] Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed, which a man took, and sowed in his field:
[32] Which indeed is the least of all seeds: but when it is grown, it is the greatest among herbs, and becometh a tree, so that the birds of the air come and lodge in the branches thereof.
[33] Another parable spake he unto them; The kingdom of heaven is like unto leaven, which a woman took, and hid in three measures of meal, till the whole was leavened.
[34] All these things spake Jesus unto the multitude in parables; and without a parable spake he not unto them:
[35] That it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, I will open my mouth in parables; I will utter things which have been kept secret from the foundation of the world.
[36] Then Jesus sent the multitude away, and went into the house: and his disciples came unto him, saying, Declare unto us the parable of the tares of the field.
[37] He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man;
[38] The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one;
[39] The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels.
[40] As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world.
[41] The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity;
[42] And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth." Matthew 13:24-42
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    contemplative contemplative