Thursday, June 30, 2011

Losing Yarnell's?

With this tragic story from Arkansas, I feel like a tree that's suffered an ax-blow near the roots.

It looks like Yarnell's Ice Cream will soon be no more. This Searcy, Arkansas-based ice cream maker is known for it's Ozark Black Walnut variety, and I tried to make a point of enjoying it whenever I was back down there. In recent years, my mother and I found a way to wrap the half-gallon containers in newspaper and then put in ice-packed coolers to survive the 10-hour trip back to Illinois. I can't get down there at the moment, and I am panicking. I'll have to see if some relatives can't grab me a couple and keep them in their freezer for me.

By the by, while I mourn the loss of the ice cream, my deeper concern is for the company and its workers. More than that, I'm concerned about the fact that this is yet another indication of the trouble our country is in economically. It's already in tatters spiritually. The economy is a by-product.

Somehow, I hope and pray that Yarnell's can find a way to re-open. And I also hope and pray that we will get rid of the batch of idiots currently running the country and replace them with people who have a clue economically, and with a determination to put our nation back on the course laid by our Founding Fathers.

And while we're at it, deport George Soros.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

America Unraveling

Those who have followed the The Seventh Sola for some time will know that I had the privilege of attending Dr. John MacArthur's "Shepherds' Conference" back in 2007. I posted some of the conference content here on the blog both during and after the event. It was truly stellar.

Dr. Steve Lawson was one of the keynote speakers at the conference then, and he was also at a local conference in my area not too long ago (First Baptist Church in Freeport, IL, hosted the event). Dr. Lawson — pastor of Christ Fellowship Baptist Church in Mobile, AL — recently keynoted at the Resolved Conference in southern California. In his address covered by the Christian Post, Dr. Lawson makes the case that America is "unraveling like a cheap sweater" due to its growing ungodliness and immorality.

This is worth pondering and making a matter of prayer. Our nation is indeed in trouble, and the only solution is the Gospel. Churches need to quit entertaining the masses and get back to preaching it.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Clueless is as Clueless Does

Who is Trevor Phillips?

That was my first question after seeing this little ditty of an article over at the Christian Post. Apparently Mr. Phillips has some issues with Christians actually daring to stand up for historic biblical Christianity.

This particular flap is taking place over in the United Kingdom. But never despair, we have enough silliness happening on this side of the pond as well. Apparently some New York atheists are mad at a memorial for some 9/11 fallen NYC firefighters. They find "Seven in Heaven" offensive.

I used to get mad at this stuff, but now I pretty much just roll my eyes and point the upturned noses wearing duncecaps back at Scripture . . . that is after rubbing their noses in their own effluent for a while. What still makes me mad is when Christians allow themselves to be cowed or intimidated by this nonsense. There's no need to be. Keep speaking and standing for truth whether anyone else likes it or not. They only get away with it when Christians are silent and timid.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

No Con-Con!

From time to time on this blog, I've brought up various dangers to the United States' constitutional system, including the possibility of rewriting our founding document entirely.

Today, David Limbaugh discusses the issue, and spells out the horrible things that could happen if today's society gets hold of a constitutional convention.

I hope and pray people heed the warning.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

110-Year-Old Lightbulb?

For today's post, how about a little fun and oddity for a change? I could use some.

This little tidbit from Fox News shows a lightbulb at the Livermore-Pleasanton Fire department that's been burning for 110 years. The longest lasting bulb ever.

Can you imagine all the world events that have taken place, and yet the bulb keeps burning. And think of the spiritual applications or analogies that could be drawn. Christ is the light of the world and is eternal. Christians are supposed to be salt and light in our dark culture.

Something to think about for a Saturday.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Southern Baptists Take a Stand

Talk about chutzpah. Looks like a coalition of homosexual groups decided that they were going to take on the Southern Baptist Convention. They don't like the fact that the SBC thus far stands for biblical truth and orthodox teaching on sexual matters. As you will see from the article, the SBC did not back down. President Bryant Wright (pictured right courtesy of Baptist Press) delivered the message kindly, but plainly.

I'm glad to hear it. All too many people these days are letting themselves be cowed by these groups. That includes politicians as well as an increasing number of so-called Christian denominations, to their everlasting shame.

The SBC struck exactly the right tone. Preach biblical truth concerning sin, yet with love and compassion. This won't be sufficient for militant gays. They say they just want tolerance, but they want more than that. They want acceptance and approval.

That is something that Bible-believing, Bible-preaching churches can never do.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Satanic Wickedness in Mexico

For some time, I have wondered whether Mexico has not finally fallen to the level of being what is called a "failed state." This is a term used in international diplomacy whenever a country's government no longer has any control, and where "every man does what is right in his own eyes."

Yesterday, I saw this in-depth article about Mexico's drug cartels and the levels of bestial brutality to which they'll sink. It's a heartbreaking story. Strategic Forecasting (Stratfor) has also done quite a bit of research into this subject. The picture they paint is truly alarming, showing that the cartels are increasingly using military weapons, uniforms, equipment and tactics in their illegal operations. Violence has already crossed the border into the U.S. and that trend is likely to continue unless something is done.

It is only a matter of time before the U.S. military has to take a hand in this. And who knows where that will lead in the end. In the meantime, Christians have an awful lot of Gospel-preaching to do.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Christians Actually Evangelize? The Horror!

I really need to get over being irritated at churches doing and saying idiotic, unbiblical things. But I can't help it. It's infuriating.

Note this little blog post where some are taking Dr. Al Mohler to task for saying that Congressman Anthony Weiner of Weinergate fame needs Jesus. Imagine that! Christians actually evangelizing the lost. Oh, the humanity! Oh, the horror!

Note also the reaction of some United Church of Christ congregations and those of apostate like mind. Tsk tsk. Let's just throw the Lord Jesus Christ's Great Commission under the bus, shall we?

In Galatians and 2 Corinthians, the Apostle Paul talks about "false brethren." In 2 Thessalonians, he talks about the coming apostasy of the last days. The Apostle John described such false teachers and "brethren" in stark terms . . . They went out from us, but they were not really of us; for if they had been of us, they would have remained with us; but they went out, so that it would be shown that they all are not of us (1 John 2:19).

Dr. Mohler is absolutely right and on target. Anthony Weiner does need to come to repentance and put his trust in Christ for salvation. There is no other way to the Father but through Christ. Scripture makes no apologies for this truth, and neither should those of us who call ourselves Christians.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Atheists and Prayer?

The battle that militant atheists wage against public expressions of interaction with God seem to ebb and flow depending on circumstances hither and yon. Sometimes the news has nothing to do with prayer in school or "In God We Trust" on coinage. Sometimes it enters the news when a well-known vocal atheist such as Christopher Hitchens gets terminally ill and people begin praying for him.

In this World Magazine column, Tony Woodlief expresses the view that atheists ought to encourage prayer instead of fighting against it. I appreciate the sentiment and get a chuckle out of it, even while agreeing with Tony's grim conclusion. However, I don't think militant atheists will appreciate the advice very much.

While you're at World's website, look up Marvin Olasky's latest column on expository preaching and story-telling. Worth the read.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Rocks and Reflection

The ones in the know about blogging often say that if you want to build readership in this internet age, you have to keep new content coming. If that's the case, I'm surprised I have any readers left. It seems my time to blog gets less and less as time goes on. If it's not a lack of time, it's a lack of inspiration. It was a combination of both this week, and I noticed today that I hadn't posted anything since Monday. But what to post? It took a scan of my photo file and the picture of me at Missouri's Elephant Rocks to spark something worth comment. Funny the things that give you inspiration . . .

In the past couple of years, I've often felt that I had a weight on my shoulders the size of that very large granite boulder. I don't need to go into detail, but It's been a challenge to juggle the care of elderly parents along with the demands of work and ministry. Yet, as odd as it might sound to some in this generation, I wouldn't have it any other way.

Do I get tired? Yes. Frustrated at times? Yes. Grieved? Yes. It's hard to watch people you love very much suffer the indignities of advancing age, infirmity and all the things that come with getting older. I'm no spring chicken anymore, and I feel the advance of time myself. Beyond this, life itself presents many challenges. For followers of the Lord Jesus, He warned us that our lives will be difficult in a fallen world. We struggle against our sin nature. We struggle against enemies of the Gospel. We endure the attacks of Satan and his acolytes -- both supernatural and natural. But we are not alone.

Keith Green once sang a song called "Trials Turned to Gold." Basically, it's about how God sovereignly works in the lives of His people, and uses the trials He allows to refine us into gold. The Lord's brother James reminds us to "consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials." The Apostle Peter encouraged, "In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials." The writer of Hebrews speaks of the Lord's discipline, and how -- though it is difficult -- it yields "the peaceful fruit of righteousness."

The Lord is teaching through life's sorrows. He Himself is called the "Man of Sorrows, acquainted with grief." He is our example of One who loves, gives and serves.

I hope I can learn the lesson to His glory.

Monday, June 06, 2011

Alumni Demand a Christian College Cease Christianity?

Today's Christian Post contains this troubling little article about homosexual activists foaming at the mouth again.

This time, some alumni of Messiah College apparently want the Christian school to abandon biblical ethics, specifically the stand they take about homosexual conduct. Thus far, the college has appropriately told the offending alumni to go pound sand. The protesting alumni say they'll take their money elsewhere if the college doesn't give in.

We'll probably see more of this nonsense, and I hope that truly Christian colleges, universities and seminaries stand firm despite what economic hit they take. More than that, they need to come out aggressively against the homosexual denial of biblical truth and hit back hard. They shouldn't wait for some student engaged in sexual sin to leave in a huff. Said student ought to repent or face expulsion. There are plenty of secular colleges and universities where they can engage in sodomy to their gut's content. Christian colleges are Christian colleges for a reason, and have every right to expect their students to adhere to biblical conduct.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Dr. Al Mohler on Harold Camping's Errors

Fellow blogger Dan Phillips recently noted the reluctance of many in the evangelical camp to roundly condemn Harold Camping's false teachings. This week, Dr. Al Mohler has written a column dealing with Camping's errors and also expresses dismay over the same squeamishness.

When Dan first made the observation, I commented over at his blog, wondering about the admonition from the Apostle Paul to Timothy about not "sharply rebuking an older man." On reflection, I think that line was written to Timothy — a comparatively young pastor — to caution him against coming across as ugly or disrespectful to much older men. In the culture of that day, such sassiness would have been severely frowned upon. Come to think of it, young people in our day were once taught to respect their elders. I think they still are in some circles, although the evidence is getting harder to find.

Having said all that and upon reflection, I don't think Paul's admonition to Timothy was intended to stop church leaders and elders from rebuking and correcting false teachers. Even Timothy was expected to do so, but always in a godly manner. Sometimes there has to be pretty frank, plain language when such correction takes place. In the end, sometimes there is no other option but the anathema.

As both Dan and Al Mohler have pointed out, Harold Camping has earned anathemas . . . in spades.

Wednesday, June 01, 2011

Hollywood Liberal? Surely You Jest!

For years, we've heard conservatives taking issue with the entertainment industry and it's perceived liberal bias. Seems like they're coming out and admitting it now.

I remember some years ago when I used to post on the IMDb message boards, and used the term "reverse McCarthyism" to criticize Hollywood liberals and their treatment of conservatives. You'd think I used the "n" word or something, judging from the immediate howls of protest.

Sorry, folks. It is what it is — liberal McCarthyism.