Monday, September 26, 2005

Worship songwriting

Worship songwriting before:
Could we with ink the ocean fill,
And were the skies of parchment made,
Were every stalk on earth a quill,
And every man a scribe by trade,
To write the love of God above,
Would drain the ocean dry.
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
Though stretched from sky to sky.

The Love of God by Frederick Lehman
Worship songwriting today:
Father just words
And I have so few
I run out too fast
to speak them to you (repeat)

You are indescribable
You are beyond expression
I run out of words for you
I can't think that high...

So High by Ben and Michelle Patterson
Are we giving up too quickly these days in finding ways to communicate to our generation the greatness of God?

Thursday, September 22, 2005

He rides upon the storm

God Moves In a Mysterious Way
William Cowper

God moves in a mysterious way
his wonders to perform:
he plants his footsteps in the sea,
and rides upon the storm.


Deep in unfathomable mines,
with never-failing skill,
he treasures up his bright designs,
and works his sovereign will.

Ye fearful saints, fresh courage take;
the clouds ye so much dread
are big with mercy, and shall break
in blessings on your head.


Judge not the Lord by feeble sense,
but trust him for his grace;
behind a frowning providence
he hides a smiling face.

His purposes will ripen fast,
unfolding every hour:
the bud may have a bitter taste,
but sweet will be the flower.

Blind unbelief is sure to err,
and scan his work in vain;
God is his own interpreter,
and he will make it plain.

“Out of the south comes the storm,
And out of the north the cold.
“From the breath of God ice is made,
And the expanse of the waters is frozen.
“Also with moisture He loads the thick cloud;
He disperses the cloud of His lightning.
“It changes direction, turning around by His guidance,
That it may do whatever He commands it
On the face of the inhabited earth.
“Whether for correction, or for His world,
Or for lovingkindness, He causes it to happen. – Job 37:9-13

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Functions

Douglas Wilson writes:
"So which is superior, a ten-pound sledge, or a china tea cup? The answer depends entirely on what you want to do. Do you want to drink tea or drive in railroad spikes? To ascribe to a railroad spike the attributes of delicacy and beauty would be to insult the railroad (not that it would care). It would not be an insult to the attributes of delicacy and beauty themselves. The Bible tells us that women are not as good as men are in the important work of violence. Men have one kind of strength and women have another. The strength of each domain becomes a weakness outside that domain. No man should want to be told that he throws hand grenades like a girl. And no mother should want to be told that she rocks her child to sleep like a team of Navy Seals" (Federal Husband, p. 80)

Monday, September 05, 2005

An atheist's view of liberal Christianity

Russell Moore recently debated film-maker and atheist Brian Fleming and Joel Phelps, a pastor of a liberal church. He shares his thoughts on it on his blog. Fleming's observations from this discussion were very telling of the inconsistecy of liberal theology.
The biggest division on the panel was not between Moore and me, however. I think that fundies believe crazy things, but I acknowledge that once you step into their fantasy world where a hateful, disturbed god wrote a book called the Holy Bible, the hateful, disturbed conclusions of Christian fundamentalists do make some kind of internal sense.

Liberal Christianity, despite being non-hateful and on many issues even ethical, is hopelessly incoherent, however. Liberal Christianity says a perfect God wrote a perfect book--but he made mistakes. Or, alternately, liberal Christianity says the book is an extremely flawed and even disgusting work written by men--but special attention should still be paid to it. Liberal Christianity says religion shouldn't stand in the way of science--but a dead man did really rise from the dead. Probably. Or, at least, it's not unreasonable to believe that he did (or that he turned water into wine and walked on water). Liberal Christianity says the love of Jesus is the only way to Heaven--but if some people don't believe that, it's fine to let their deluded souls go off to Hell without even trying to stop them. Or maybe Heaven and Hell don't exist at all--but it's still very, very important to praise this figure called "God." For some reason.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Not my hometown

Dr. Russell Moore (Dean of the School of Theology here at Southern) was personally affected by Katrina and shares some powerful thoughts:
My hometown isn't there anymore. But, then again, it never really was. The hope after Katrina is not for civil defense and architectural rebuilding. It is for Biloxi, Miss., and all of the created universe, to be redeemed and restored in Christ. There will come a day when the curse is reversed, and the Gulf Coast along with the entire cosmos fully reflects the glory of a resurrected Messiah. And John sees in his vision that, on that day, "the sea was no more" (Revelation 21:1). He also sees that in the Holy City, "nothing unclean will ever enter it" (Revelation 21:27).

That includes the curse of Eden and all of its children: including a hurricane named Katrina. On that day, and not until then, nothing will ever threaten the New Jerusalem, our hometown.
Read the rest here: Christ, Katrina, and my Hometown