But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.  1 Peter 3: 14-16

Monday, 02 December 2019 15:00

New Children’s Book: The Mirror Who Wanted To Be Someone Featured

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I’m pleased to announce the release of a children’s book, The Mirror Who Wanted To Be Someone. Lovingly illustrated by Diane Shearer with hand-drawn illustrations, this is a fairy tale of the Christian story of creation, fall, redemption and restoration.image

A happy Mirror becomes confused...

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Monday, 25 November 2019 13:02

Christian at the Movies (3) – Magic and Fantasy Featured

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Many Christians are alarmed at books or movies that involve magic or fantasy. They feel that the one is dabbling in the occult, and the other is immersing oneself in what is unreal and possibly even false. They wonder that any Christians could read or watch something containing magic, wizards or...

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Monday, 18 November 2019 12:13

Christian at the Movies (2) Featured

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The laziest form of “discernment” about movies or television looks for the easy targets of occultism, sex, nudity, bad language and gratuitous violence. Certainly, Christians are right to avoid these things. But as we have seen in our last post, discernment is not as simple as using...

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Sunday, 10 November 2019 13:54

Christian at the Movies (1) Featured

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I was about ten when the first Rock ‘ Roll evangelists came to town. They weren’t proselytising on behalf of Iron Maiden. They were there to tell us about the rampant satanism and occultism in contemporary rock and pop.

To rapt audiences, they played snippets of songs backwards:...

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Monday, 28 October 2019 19:08

Preference and Amorality Featured

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Adiaphora (indifferent matters) are misunderstood on two grounds. First, evangelicals misunderstand the term indifferent to mean unimportant. Second, evangelicals conflate the moral neutrality of adiaphora themselves into morally neutral actions once they are used.

First of all,...

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Thursday, 24 October 2019 23:27

Preferences and Adiaphora Featured

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God reveals His will in Scripture in three ways.

The first is by explicit command or prohibition. God simply mandates certain behaviours and forbids others. The second is by principles. Principles give truths, usually in timeless, axiomatic, or generalised form, which must then be properly connected...

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Wednesday, 09 October 2019 18:34

The Protection of Preference Featured

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Scripture loves unity among the saints, but does not mandate uniformity. Somewhere Tozer points out that a hundred pianos all tuned with the same tuning fork will all be in harmony with one another. So believers, when conformed to Christ and submitted to the same sound doctrine, will find their...

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Monday, 16 September 2019 16:00

Ten Mangled Words : “Taste” Featured

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De gustibus non est disputandum, said the ancient Romans. There is no disputing over taste, meaning that in matters of personal taste and preference, there can be no profitable dispute, and therefore there ought to be none.

There’s much truth to that. If you’re a fan of murder mysteries,...

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Monday, 09 September 2019 22:59

Votes From the Democracy of the Dead Featured

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The idea of ordinate affection is not welcome today. Narcissism has become a celebrated virtue, and is now even given the monikers transparent, authentic, and real. The two ditches of sentimentalism and brutality now take up most of the road and a slender middle path of appropriate love is...

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Tuesday, 03 September 2019 17:38

Affect or Effect Featured

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The difference between affections and emotions is seen in what art is used in worship.

Since worship uses art, worship leaders can use it in precisely one of these two ways: to affect us, or to create effect.

They can work with poetry, music and the spoken word to work with the imagination. There the...

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Thursday, 22 August 2019 18:57

The Toys Featured

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by Coventry Patmore

My little Son, who look’d from thoughtful eyes And moved and spoke in quiet grown-up wise, Having my law the seventh time disobey’d, I struck him, and dismiss’d With hard words and unkiss’d, His Mother, who was patient, being dead. Then, fearing lest his...

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Tuesday, 20 August 2019 00:55

Everything is Uh-Sim Featured

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“How’re you guys doin’ today?”

“Fine, thanks.”

Uh-sim. Will you be using a rewards card today?”

“Uh, no.”

Uh-sim. Cash back?”

“No, not today.” Swipes card, takes receipt. 

“No prob. You guys have an uh-sim day...

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Monday, 12 August 2019 23:15

Emotional or Affected? Featured

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While C. S. Lewis encourages us to not place too much stock in our feelings, he was adamant that the whole point of education was to create right affections. Affections are not a matter of bodily sensations, but a matter of judging value and responding appropriately:

“Until quite modern times...

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Friday, 09 August 2019 01:09

Stop Feeling Your Feelings Featured

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Since emotion is a mangled and confusing word, we need to separate the different experiences it is used to refer to. As we have seen, older generations used the terms affections and passions to at least attempt to point out the differences. Some of these emotional experiences are...

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Thursday, 25 July 2019 19:04

Three Eschatologies Featured

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imageWhat each shares with another, what they all share, and what is unique to each.

Authors: David...

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Monday, 01 July 2019 15:00

Does God Have “Emotions”?

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Trying to answer a badly-worded question often leads to an inferior answer. Loaded questions implicate those who even attempt to answer them. “By what authority doest thou these things?” Whether Jesus had answered “By My own” or “By My Father’s”, he would...

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Monday, 24 June 2019 15:00

A Short History of “Emotion”

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Some might be surprised to learn that the word emotion is perhaps only 200 years old. Thomas Dixon has documented the history of the term “emotion” in his book From Passions to Emotions. He shows that what was originally a moral category in Christian thought named affections or pass...

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Monday, 17 June 2019 15:06

Ten Mangled Words – “Emotion”

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Perhaps few words are as mangled as the word emotion. In this word is a cacophony of confusion. For some, emotion is nothing more than the superficial states of the body: neither moral, nor important. For others, emotion is the gold standard of sincerity: if you feel it, then you mean it, and lack...

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Tuesday, 11 June 2019 01:38

A Theology of Equality

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When God made humankind, He made them male and female, both equally in His image (Genesis 1:26-27). According to Peter this makes men and women co-heirs of the grace of life (1 Peter 3:7). He chose to do so in a staggered fashion, however, creating the male first, followed by the female. In so...

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Friday, 07 June 2019 02:35

8. Beauty and Knowing

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Beauty does not only encourage a pursuit of reality, but beauty encourages a Christian epistemology. It teaches how we know what we know.

The Enlightenment project involved pursuing certainty without relying on revelation or authority. If a thinking, knowing subject could be “neutral”,...

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Monday, 03 June 2019 03:21

Equality and Necessary Hierarchy

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The current proponents of social justice have little idea of what they may be creating in pursuit of their goal. Their goal is a just society, but the pursuit of radical egalitarianism won’t provide them with that.

Richard Weaver, writing in 1948, describes how radical egalitarianism provides...

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Monday, 11 March 2019 19:00

7. Beauty and Reality

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Beauty has made a comeback. After years of being relegated by intellectual elites to the junkyard of old and outdated concepts, it is now popping up everywhere. The terminology of beauty is, strangely enough, now heard often in scientific and mathematical discourse, speaking of the beauty of...

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Sunday, 03 March 2019 21:01

A Parable About Pop Music in Church

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Christian 1: So I hear you have a problem with lollipops?

Christian 2: Lollipops? No, I think they’re just fine.

Christian 1: But you apparently won’t eat them for family meals.

Christian 2: That’s true. I prefer my family eats some kind of meat, vegetables or healthier food for...

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Wednesday, 27 February 2019 18:55

Fifteen

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Fifteen

Fifteen years can seem too short To find a love hard-won and fought, To know the ease of silent thought And rest in love that can’t be bought.

Fifteen years can seem too long To finally have a love so strong That weathers pain and suffering And still retains a joy that’s young.

Fift...

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Tuesday, 26 February 2019 14:38

6. The Value of Beauty

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What possible value can the study of beauty deliver? Isn’t this fiddling while Rome burns, counting daffodil petals while barbarians lay siege to the city? In times of apostasy, false teaching, deception and darkness, shouldn’t aesthetics go to the bottom of the priority-pile?

When...

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