June 26th, 2015

Christ alone

It is in the flow of eternal life 9:06 AM Friday Eastern Standard Time. A cloudy day outside this morning. Inside I feel hung over. I have been thinking of going down into the lower level and laying down in the cool darkness till I feel a hundred percent inside. But instead I find myself writing here hoping it all will make sense in the end.

My wife has gone to bed for the day after working through the night as a professional nurse at a local hospital.

I have nothing to do today accept prepare for the end.

I got woke up this morning around 6:05 AM by Rudy scratching at his cage door wanting to get out so he could go outside and go to the bathroom. So I got up and let Rudy outside so he could do his thing. I went back to bed but my mind was active so I got up and messed with our main computer. After awhile I wrote in my paper diary and then went down in the lower level to lay down. I got up around 7 o'clock AM and warmed up coffee made last night.

I read this morning some poems from a book I got out last night titled, "Contemporary American Poetry" Selected And Introduced By Donald Hall.

I have been thinking this morning about some of the things I wrote yesterday about the nature of true religion (biblical Christianity). It is important to realize being a Christian is not knowing first of all a body of teachings (a system of doctrine), but it is a living ongoing relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ the Son of God. It is through the Son of God that we have a relationship with God the Father. This present daily ongoing relationship with God the Father and God the Son is made possible by the present work of God the Holy Spirit. Christianity is having a intimate felt relationship with the Persons of the Godhead. Man/Woman was created to know and love God. That relationship was disrupted by sin and then restored by the work of Christ. A lot more could be written about the message of the Bible on salvation, but that would take pages. We should beware of making Christianity into a system of esoteric teachings. Salvation comes by looking to the Lord Jesus Christ alone, not by learning a body of teachings or practicing some form of ascetic routine like mediation/sitting in silence. We are saved by Christ alone and not by works. Now after we come to know the Lord there is a way we must follow in order to deepen our relationship with the Lord like prayer, fasting, mediation, reading the Bible, worship, the fellowship of the saints. sacraments etc. . .

Well I could write more, but I have written about these things for years here in LJ. I always tell people read the Bible and pray for the Holy Spirit to teach you. Understanding the Bible is first of all not an intellectual exercise, but we come to the Bible looking to the Holy Spirit to illuminate our minds/hearts. ("And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures" Luke 24:45)

I suppose I will close to drift. I might go someplace this morning. Next Friday we will be in the month of July.

"For it is the God who commanded light to shine out of darkness, who has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ" 2 Corinth. 4:6

Douglas MI
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    Prurient 'Frozen Niagara Falls'

The Happiness of Enjoying and Making a True and Speedy Use of Christ by Alexander Grosse

Alexander Grosse

Table of Contents:

1. Showing the Transcendency of Christ’s Fullness above All Created Fullness and Opening the Scope of the Words

2. Declaring the Vanity of Joining Human Observations to Christ Jesus

3. Disclosing the folly of Not Cleaving to and Contenting Ourselves with Christ, but Instead Going Aside to Vain Inventions

4. Setting Forth the Beauty of All Divine and Heavenly Fullness in Christ

5. Setting Forth the Folly of Neglecting Christ and Seeking Fullness Elsewhere

6. Discovering the Folly of Not Coming Fully Home to Christ, in Whom is All Fullness

7. Showing How Christ is to Be Valued and Esteemed Above All

8. Persuading to Come to and Get Interest in Christ

9. Teaching How to Make Use of Christ

10. Persuading to Full and Constant Yielding to Christ

11. Declaring the Inseparable Union of Christ’s Two Natures in One Person

12. Showing that Man’s Choicest Excellency Consists in Union with God

13. Declaring the Perfection and Fullness of Christ Above the Fullness of all Creatures

14. Setting Forth the Superlative Excellency of Christ above all Creatures

15. Opening the Blessed and Happy Condition of them that are Partakers of Christ

16. Ascribing Perfection in Christ to such Alone that are truly Blessed

17. Outlining Four Grounds of the Saints’ Perfection

18. Evidencing the Fullness of the Saints by Four Characteristics or Marks, with Four Motives to Labor for Fullness

http://www.heritagebooks.org/products/the-happiness-of-enjoying-and-making-a-true-and-speedy-use-of-christ.html
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative

blue flower

It is now in IT 12:58 PM Friday afternoon. As I type I can hear our central air system blowing cold air into our home. Outside this afternoon it is sunny and warm. I left the house this morning to visit thrift stores. I found four used books this morning to ADD to our library-

"Lost for Words" a novel by Edward St. Aubyn

"The Blue Flower" a novel by Penelope Fitzgerald

"Stardust" a novel by Joseph Kanon

"When the Killing's Done" a novel by T. C. Boyle

When I got home I ate food and then cataloged my new used books into my LibraryThing site. So has gone by existence.

"[1] For I would that ye knew what great conflict I have for you, and for them at Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh;
[2] That their hearts might be comforted, being knit together in love, and unto all riches of the full assurance of understanding, to the acknowledgement of the mystery of God, and of the Father, and of Christ;
[3] In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.
[4] And this I say, lest any man should beguile you with enticing words." Colossians 2:1-4

Douglas MI
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    Godflesh 'Pure'

So-Called Same-Sex Marriage Lamenting the New Calamity by John Piper

Jesus died so that heterosexual and homosexual sinners might be saved. Jesus created sexuality, and has a clear will for how it is to be experienced in holiness and joy.

His will is that a man might leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife, and that the two become one flesh (Mark 10:6–9). In this union, sexuality finds its God-appointed meaning, whether in personal-physical unification, symbolic representation, sensual jubilation, or fruitful procreation.

For those who have forsaken God’s path of sexual fulfillment, and walked into homosexual intercourse or heterosexual extramarital fornication or adultery, Jesus offers astonishing mercy.

Such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. (1 Corinthians 6:11)
But today this salvation from sinful sexual acts was not embraced. Instead there was massive institutionalization of sin.

In a 5-to-4 decision, the Supreme Court of the United States of America has ruled that states cannot ban same-sex marriage.

The Bible is not silent about such decisions. Alongside its clearest explanation of the sin of homosexual intercourse (Romans 1:24–27) stands the indictment of the approval and institutionalization of it. Though people know intuitively that homosexual acts (along with gossip, slander, insolence, haughtiness, boasting, faithlessness, heartlessness, ruthlessness) are sin, “they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them” (Romans 1:29–32). “I tell you even with tears, that many glory in their shame” (Philippians 3:18–19).

This is what the highest court in our land did today — knowing these deeds are wrong, “yet approving those who practice them.”

My sense is that we do not realize what a calamity is happening around us. The new thing — new for America, and new for history — is not homosexuality. That brokenness has been here since we were all broken in the fall of man. (And there is a great distinction between the orientation and the act — just like there is a great difference between my orientation to pride and the act of boasting.)

What’s new is not even the celebration and approval of homosexual sin. Homosexual behavior has been exploited, and reveled in, and celebrated in art, for millennia. What’s new is normalization and institutionalization. This is the new calamity.

My main reason for writing is not to mount a political counter-assault. I don’t think that is the calling of the church as such. My reason for writing is to help the church feel the sorrow of these days. And the magnitude of the assault on God and his image in man.

Christians, more clearly than others, can see the tidal wave of pain that is on the way. Sin carries in it its own misery: “Men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error” (Romans 1:27).

And on top of sin’s self-destructive power comes, eventually, the final wrath of God: “sexual immorality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. On account of these the wrath of God is coming” (Colossians 3:5–6).

Christians know what is coming, not only because we see it in the Bible, but because we have tasted the sorrowful fruit of our own sins. We do not escape the truth that we reap what we sow. Our marriages, our children, our churches, our institutions — they are all troubled because of our sins.

The difference is: We weep over our sins. We don’t celebrate them. We don’t institutionalize them. We turn to Jesus for forgiveness and help. We cry to Jesus, “who delivers us from the wrath to come” (1 Thessalonians 1:10).

And in our best moments, we weep for the world, and for our own nation. In the days of Ezekiel, God put a mark of hope “on the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations that are committed in Jerusalem” (Ezekiel 9:4).

This is what I am writing for. Not political action, but love for the name of God and compassion for the city of destruction.

“My eyes shed streams of tears, because people do not keep your law.” (Psalm 119:136)

http://www.desiringgod.org/articles/so-called-same-sex-marriage

Mohler responds to Supreme Court’s same-sex marriage decision

SBTS Communications — June 26, 2015

R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary

EDITOR'S NOTE: The following is a statement from R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, on the decision of the Supreme Court of the United States concerning same-sex marriage:

Everything has changed and nothing has changed. The Supreme Court’s decision today is a central assault upon marriage as the conjugal union of a man and a woman and in a 5-4 decision the nation’s highest court has now imposed its mandate redefining marriage on all 50 states.

As Chief Justice Roberts said in his dissent, “The majority’s decision is an act of will, not a legal judgment.”

The majority’s argument, expressed by Justice Kennedy, is that the right of same-sex couples to marry is based in individual autonomy as related to sexuality, in marriage as a fundamental right, in marriage as a privileged context for raising children, and in upholding marriage as central to civilization. But at every one of these points, the majority had to reinvent marriage in order to make its case. The Court has not merely ordered that same-sex couples be allowed to marry — it has fundamentally redefined marriage itself.

The inventive legal argument set forth by the majority is clearly traceable in Justice Kennedy’s previous decisions including Lawrence (2003) and Windsor (2013), and he cites his own decisions as legal precedent. As the Chief Justice makes clear, Justice Kennedy and his fellow justices in the majority wanted to legalize same-sex marriage and they invented a constitutional theory to achieve their purpose. It was indeed an act of will disguised as a legal judgment.

The Supreme Court of the United States is the highest court in the land, and its decisions cannot be appealed to a higher court of law. But the Supreme Court, like every human institution and individual, will eventually face two higher courts. The first is the court of history, which will render a judgment that I believe will embarrass this court and reveal its dangerous trajectory. The precedents and arguments set forth in this decision cannot be limited to the right of same-sex couples to marry. If individual autonomy and equal protection mean that same-sex couples cannot be denied what is now defined as a fundamental right of marriage, then others will arrive to make the same argument. This Court will find itself in a trap of its own making, and one that will bring great harm to this nation and its families. The second court we all must face is the court of divine judgment. For centuries, marriage ceremonies in the English-speaking world have included the admonition that what God has put together, no human being — or human court — should tear asunder. That is exactly what the Supreme Court of the United States has now done.

The threat to religious liberty represented by this decision is clear, present, and inevitable. Assurances to the contrary, the majority in this decision has placed every religious institution in legal jeopardy if that institution intends to uphold its theological convictions limiting marriage to the union of a man and a woman. This threat is extended to every religious citizen or congregation that would uphold the convictions held by believers for millennia.

In that sense, everything has now changed. The highest court of the land has redefined marriage. Those who cannot accept this redefinition of marriage as a matter of morality and ultimate truth, must acknowledge that the laws of this nation concerning marriage will indeed be defined against our will. We must acknowledge the authority of the Supreme Court in matters of law. Christians must be committed to be good citizens and good neighbors, even as we cannot accept this redefinition of marriage in our churches and in our lives.

We must contend for marriage as God’s gift to humanity — a gift central and essential to human flourishing and a gift that is limited to the conjugal union of a man and a woman. We must contend for religious liberty for all, and focus our energies on protecting the rights of Christian citizens and Christian institutions to teach and operate on the basis of Christian conviction.

We cannot be silent, and we cannot join the moral revolution that stands in direct opposition to what we believe the Creator has designed, given, and intended for us. We cannot be silent, and we cannot fail to contend for marriage as the union of a man and a woman.

In one sense, everything has changed. And yet, nothing has changed. The cultural and legal landscape has changed, as we believe this will lead to very real harms to our neighbors. But our Christian responsibility has not changed. We are charged to uphold marriage as the union of a man and a woman and to speak the truth in love. We are also commanded to uphold the truth about marriage in our own lives, in our own marriages, in our own families, and in our own churches.

We are called to be the people of the truth, even when the truth is not popular and even when the truth is denied by the culture around us. Christians have found themselves in this position before, and we will again. God’s truth has not changed. The Holy Scriptures have not changed. The gospel of Jesus Christ has not changed. The church’s mission has not changed. Jesus Christ is the same, yesterday, today, and forever.

http://news.sbts.edu/2015/06/26/mohler-responds-supreme-courts-same-sex-marriage-decision/
  • Current Mood
    contemplative contemplative

The Epistle of Jude (New Testament)

It is in the flow of existence 8:51 PM Friday night. I plan to go to bed early tonight. I got up way too early this morning. I never got around to taking a nap today. Time got away from me.

I spent the afternoon hours wandering my cell and reading from a book titled, "Jubilee Hitchhiker: The Life and Times of Richard Brautigan" by William Hjortsberg. The day went by quietly, which I am thankful for.

Do not know what else to report this evening. I watched a TV show I taped last week this evening. I read some more of the novel "The Odd Woman" by Gail Godwin. Not much else going on.

Tomorrow I volunteer at the Herrick District Public Library used books store from 10 AM till 1 PM. I might mow our lawn tomorrow when I get home from the library book nook.

Carol is off from work tomorrow night. Next weekend we will be in the month of July 2015. Half of the Year 2015 is gone already. It will soon be the Day of Judgment. "For our God is a consuming fire" Hebrews 12:29; "Now Enoch, the seventh from Adam prophesied about these men also, saying, "Behold the Lord comes with ten thousand of His saints, to execute judgment on all, to convict all who are ungodly among them of all their ungodly deeds which they have committed in an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things ungodly sinners have spoken against Him" Jude 14,15.

I suppose I will close for the night. There is no way of escape. "Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man" Luke 21:36.

Terrible God, that reign’st on high,
How awful is Thy thundering hand!
Thy fiery bolts, how fierce they fly!
Nor can all earth or hell withstand.

This the old rebel angels knew,
And Satan fell beneath Thy frown;
Thine arrows struck the traitor through,
And weighty vengeance sunk him down.

This Sodom felt, and feels it still,
And roars beneath th’eternal load:
With endless burnings who can dwell?
Or bear the fury of a God?

Tremble ye sinners, and submit,
Throw down your arms before His throne;
Bend your heads low beneath His feet,
Or His strong hand shall crush you down.

And ye, blessed saints, that love Him too,
With reverence bow before His name;
Thus all His heav’nly servants do:
God is a bright and burning flame.

http://www.hymntime.com/tch/htm/t/g/t/tgtrhigh.htm

"But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him!" Luke 12:5; "do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God" Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites" 1 Corinth 6:9
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