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Saturday, November 30, 2002
Bishop Bill blogs again! This time, he's reporting on a lecture Richard Gaffin gave at Mid-America Reformed Seminary recently.
John John 10:09 AM 85299485 Monday, November 25, 2002
That we do in fact enter into God's special presence in the midst of his gathered congregation must never be slighted or forgotten. True, God is present everywhere. But his omnipresence is not what I am referring to here. God has promised to be present with his people in a special sense when they gather on Sunday.
John John 3:44 PM 85079132 Tuesday, November 19, 2002 Yesterday morning, John Bekkering (friend, elder, and realtor) came over. We signed some papers and then he put a lock-box on my door and a sign on the front lawn. I'm selling my house and moving to Grande Prairie, where I've taken a call to pastor Covenant Reformed Church, following in the footsteps of the eminent Bishop Bill DeJong, who has taken a call to Kansas City and who, incidentally, has published his first blog post in months!
The sign on my front lawn, though, is a sad reminder that I'm going to be leaving Lethbridge. I'll preach my last sermon here on Sunday. I've been here for four years and I'm going to miss a lot of the people.
This afternoon, a couple came by to see the house. The comments I overheard seemed positive. I'm hoping that this place will sell quickly so that I can turn around and snag a place in Grande Prairie. Your prayers are appreciated. John John 11:44 PM 84805443 Friday, November 15, 2002
Part of the reason why so many Christian worship services have no logic, no order, no movement, is because those who superintend those services of worship have not paid attention to the Bible's main instruction in the formation of a worship service because that instruction is found in the Old Testament.... It is this disregard for the importance of what is done in the worship of God and the order or logic with which it is done that has led to the common pejorative use of the words "liturgy" and "liturgical" in many evangelical and even Reformed circles. This is a mistake in more ways than one. Every church service is a liturgy, if it has various elements in some arrangement. That is what liturgy is. Liturgical churches are churches that have thought about those elements and their proper order. Non-liturgical churches are those which have not. It is no compliment to say that a church is a non-liturgical church. It is the same thing as saying it is a church that gives little thought to how it worships God (Robert S. Rayburn, "Worship From the Whole Bible," The Second Annual Conference on Worship: The Theology and Music of Reformed Worship, February 23-25, 1996 [Nashville: Covenant Presbyterian Church, 1996], pp. 22-23).John John 11:25 PM 84613308 Wednesday, November 13, 2002 I feel vindicated. Never in my life have I imbibed eight glasses of water a day, and I've always suspected that that "requirement" was a myth. And now, at last, Heinz Valtin, a Dartmouth kidney specialist, has debunked that myth. John John 10:36 AM 84482819 Monday, November 11, 2002
Martin Bucer was a man loved by all. He was a man who won friends wherever he turned, but only because it was his nature to make friends. He loved people. He loved the church fathers. He loved beer. He upheld the faith once for all given to the saints, and he upheld it with a smile. Bucer's life was so laced with joyful orthodoxy that Roman Catholic historian Hilaire Belloc was forced to say in his book Characters of the Reformation, "I shall not touch upon the life and influence of Bucer lest the malleable reader come to believe that the Reformation had its own Chesterton."Joshua Clark's short article on Martin Bucer reminds me that I want to get to know Bucer better.
John John 2:49 PM 84384708 Wednesday, November 06, 2002
Often the giving of praise or glorifying of God is set over against the worshiper's expectation of receiving anything from God in church.... Here let me say that not only is the super-spiritual-sounding assertion that "we just gather together to give praise to God, taking no interest in what we might get from him" unbiblical, it may also easily slip into doxological hubris.John John 8:17 PM 84153748 Saturday, November 02, 2002
The Church today is in dire need of reformation. This is not said with any denominational exclusivity — the Reformed churches today need reformation as much as anyone else. I say this as one who embraces the richness of the Reformed faith, as will become apparent enough later. But at the same time, because of this Reformational commitment, it is still necessary to say that to be Reformed is not enough. We must certainly live up to what we have already attained, but together with this we must not be allowed to assume that the last significant attainment was in the middle of the seventeenth century. Semper reformanda is not something we should all chant together right up until someone actually tries it (Douglas Wilson, "Reformed" Is Not Enough, p. 13).John John 11:10 AM 83927559