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
Edward Taylor Meditation 26
Reference, Acts 5:31
31 God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins.
My noble Lord, thy nothing servant I
Am for thy sake out with my heart, that holds,
So little love for such a Lord: I cry
How should I be...
Sibbes ends the sermon with the observation that to be “awake” is a “blessed state”. It is to be in a state of holy communion with God in Jesus Christ and thus is a “happy” condition.
Since a “waking” state is blessed state, that provokes the question,...
Detail of “The Musicians” (about 1595) by Caravaggio
 Music to hear, why hear’st thou music sadly?
 Sweets with sweets war not, joy delights in joy.
 Why lov’st thou...
Sibbes next considers the distinguishing marks of a true Christian and a hypocrite. He locates the fundamental difference as a difference in the heart – not a difference in the displayed behavior. He raises this issue here from the text. There is sleep – the displayed behavior; but the...
The fall of Phaethon, Johann Liss,
 Lo, in the orient when the gracious light
 Lifts up his burning head, each under eye
 Doth homage to his new-appearing sight,
The next two observations on the text by Sibbes considers the persistence of the Christian life being grounded in the love of God. The first observation, which derives from the imagery of waking and sleeping, is that while the Christian may stumble, the Christian will never completely fall:
Based upon those observations, Sibbes then turns to the application of that idea: If it true that Christians will live with two contrary principles, with desires in conflict; and yet Christians will not ultimately be overcome and lose that gracious principle which flows from the work of the Spirit...
The fourth considers the paradoxical state of Canticles 5:2, “I sleep, but my heart wakes.”
First, Sibbes notes the concept of the heart as used in the Scripture:
The word heart, you know, includes the whole soul, for the understanding is the heart, ‘an understanding heart,’...
 Then let not winter’s ragged hand deface In thee thy summer ere thou be distilled. Make sweet some vial; treasure thou some place With beauty’s treasure ere it be self-killed. That use is not forbidden usury Which happies those that pay the willing loan;...
(Photo Courtesy of Jenni Sweat, Flickr)
 Those hours that with gentle work did frame
 The lovely gaze where every eye doth dwell
 Will play the tyrants to the very same
First, The substance, or act of it, ‘Giving thanks.’ Praise relateth to God’s excellencies, thanksgiving to God’s benefits. There is a twofold thanksgiving—(1.) By way of celebration or commemoration, when we speak of God’s mercies one to another; (2.) By way of...
The earliest written use of the word “Hebrews” may have been found upon an inscribed Moabite altar discovered during ongoing excavations at the biblical site of Atarot (Khirbat Ataruz) in Jordan. The two newly deciphered late 9th century or very early 8th century BCE Moabite...
Another word to describe the error being criticized in the second lesson is utopianism. 76 The inability of the Mosaic covenant and Israel’s geopolitical kingdom to deliver a righteous and just political commmunity should have ended visions of heaven on earth by such means. Not even heavenly...
From Political Church by Johnathon Leeman
The terror of Orwell’s novel roots in the irreconcilable conflict between its implicit doctrines of creation and redemption. The unspoken assumption that every reader brings to the book is that its characters exist or were created for something...
In his Systematic Theology, Douglas Kelley makes an interesting observation concerning our knowledge of God. In his explain of how knowledge of God is made particular, within the context of the Church, Kelley draws the contrast with the Enlightenment belief that all knowledge is available...
O GOD, glorious confession of all Saints, grant us the fear of Thy Name, which Thou hast declared to be the beginning of wisdom, that joined to the councils of Thy servants, we may be filled with the banquet of Thy mercy.
Psalm 111:10 (ESV) 10 The fear of the Lord is the...
(Rainbow, Badlands National Park)
In the fifth chapter, Kuyper addresses the “blessings” of the Noahic covenant. He notes that the “covenant” comes to use a promise from God. The covenant is similar to an ordinance, but it binds God:
Genesis 9:8–17 (ESV)
8 Then God...
Some very general rules about relationships and communication: something which is far easier to understand than it is follow:
First, there is the matter of communication. It is to be clear and direct, not manipulative. That is what Jesus meant by “let your yes be yes”; and what is behind...
(Again, notes not text of a lecture. There would be a lot of fill-in between discrete notes)
There are three potential types of causation for depression: physiological, environment, or spiritual. Often these three elements will affect one-another.
(I was out of the country on a counseling conference in Chile. Here is the first half of my notes from a lecture on depression)
Notes on Depression Lecture
Begin with Psalm 88
Psalm 88 (ESV)
I Cry Out Day and Night Before You 88 A SONG. A PSALM OF THE SONS OF KORAH. TO THE CHOIRMASTER:...
Let it be the top of your ambition,
and the height of all your designs,
to glorify God,
to secure your interest in Christ,
to serve your generation,
to provide for eternity,
to walk with God,
to be tender of all that have aliquid Christi,
anything of Christ,
shining in them,
and so to steer your course in...
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