Archive for October 18th, 2011

If God Himself be for me, I may a host defy,
For when I pray, before me my foes confounded fly.
If Christ, the Head, befriend me, if God be my support,
The mischief they intend me shall quickly come to naught.

I build on this foundation, that Jesus and His blood
Alone are my salvation, the true eternal good;
Without Him, all that pleases is valueless on earth:
The gifts I owe to Jesus alone my love are worth.

His Holy Spirit dwelleth within my willing heart,
Tames it when it rebelleth, and soothes the keenest smart.
He crowns His work with blessing, and helpeth me to cry
“My Father!” without ceasing to Him Who reigns on high.

To mine His Spirit speaketh sweet words of soothing power,
How God to Him that seeketh for rest, hath rest in store;
How God Himself prepareth my heritage and lot,
And though my body weareth, my Heav’n shall fail me not.

– Paul Gerhardt, 1656

(HT: TWax)

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Ligonier continues to post articles from Steve Lawson’s Pillars of Grace. The latest installment is on Martin Luther, a fortress of truth!

The article begins:

Martin Luther was a giant of history. Some believe he was the most significant European figure of the second millennium. He was the pioneer Reformer, the one God first used to spark a transformation of Christianity and the Western world. He was the undisputed leader of the German Reformation. In a day of ecclesiastical corruptions and apostasies, he was a valiant champion of the truth; his powerful preaching and pen helped to restore the pure gospel. More books have been written about him than any other man of history except Jesus Christ and possibly Augustine.

Luther came from hard-working stock. He was born in the little town of Eisleben, Germany, on November 10, 1483. His father, Hans, was a copper miner who eventually gained some wealth from a shared interest in mines, smelters, and other business ventures. His mother was pious but religiously superstitious. Luther was raised under the strict disciplines of the Roman Catholic Church and was groomed by his industrious father to be a successful lawyer. To this end, he pursued an education at Eisenach (1498–1501) and then at the University of Erfurt in philosophy. At the latter, he received a bachelor of arts degree in 1502 and a master of arts degree in 1505.

Luther’s life took an unexpected turn in July 1505, when he was twenty-one. He was caught in a severe thunderstorm and knocked to the ground by a nearby lightning strike. Terrified, he cried out to the Catholic patroness of miners, “Help me, St. Anna, and I will become a monk.” Luther survived the storm and made good on his dramatic vow. Two weeks later, he entered the Augustinian monastery in Erfurt. His father was furious over Luther’s apparent wasted education, but Luther was determined to follow through on his vow.

The article deals with many of the most important events of Luther’s life and ends with a description of his final hours and the tribute paid to him upon his death.

Read the rest here.

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Andree Seu at WORLD Magazine writes about how meeting the Willis family, who suffered enormous tragedy 17 years ago, has changed her life:

Scott and Janet Willis lost six children in a single day when a piece of metal fell off a truck and punctured the gas tank of their minivan. That’s the part of the story that is public, so I am not telling tales out of school. The accident unraveled a corruption scandal of bribes for driver’s licenses funneled into campaign chests, and ultimately sent a governor of Illinois to prison.

But this is an essay about meeting the Willises 17 years later at a Christian conference, and about Psalm 34, and the triumph of Christendom by that simplest and most elusive of acts—believing God. And it is about the responsibility placed on me by knowing this now. And on you too, if you continue to read.

By the ball of fire that consumed their minivan on Interstate 94, Scott (his face badly burned) said to his wife (her hands badly burned) what she told me are the best words he could have said: “It was very quick. And they’re with the Lord now.” Then, as he was helped to one ambulance and she to another, he called back to her: “Psalm 34.”

Read the rest of the article which concludes:

 Praise meets trauma where nothing else can reach. Praise in the face of devastation releases blessings obtainable in no other way. The presence of God is directly related to worship.

Because the Willises chose to praise, I can choose. And because the Willises chose to praise, I must choose. They have upped the ante of my life. Meeting them has increased my obligation, as every testimony of God’s deeds increases obligation. I cannot pretend we never made acquaintance.

What a privilege to meet someone to whom the Lord has entrusted so much suffering.

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That was random #25

Don’t invite Jesus into your life. Your life’s a wreck. Jesus invites you into his life.–Dr. Russell Moore

The only Christian you want to listen to is the one who gives you more of a hunger for God.–Tozer

The troubles you face as God’s child do not indicate his absence, but are sure signs of the zeal of his transforming grace.–Paul Tripp

Work for Christ with heart and soul, but never dream for a second of placing confidence in any work of your own.–Ryle

To be prayerless is to be without God, without Christ, without grace, without hope, and without heaven.–J.C. Ryle

The things that men love not, they care not for:—the matters of their love are continually in their thoughts. ~John Owen

Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God.–Corrie Ten Boom

All things would instantly come to nothing, were they not sustained by God’s power.–Calvin.

Compromise must always be impossible where the truth is essential and fundamental. Christ Jesus is either God or He is not… -Spurgeon

If a commission by an earthly king is considered a honor, how can a commission by a Heavenly King be considered a sacrifice? -Livingstone

If we eliminate all abortion in the US, 97% of the abortions (40.8 million) will continue worldwide.–Justin Taylor

It is one thing to be a terrified sinner and another to be a repenting sinner. -Thomas Watson

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Dr. Albert Mohler wrote a piece for CNN.com that has generated over 75 pages of comments. Mohler is responding to the steady drumbeat from some voices that evangelicals are really scary people from whom are society needs to be protected.

Mohler documents many who are making such claims and then cogently explains who evangelicals are and to whom they might pose a danger. Here’s an excerpt:

Above all, evangelicals are those who believe that Jesus Christ is Lord and are most concerned about telling others about Jesus. Most of America’s evangelical Christians are busy raising their children, working to support their families and investing energy in their local churches.

But over recent decades, evangelical Christians have learned that the gospel has implications for every dimension of life, including our political responsibility.

We’re dangerous only to those who want more secular voices to have a virtual monopoly in public life.

Read the rest!

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