Election Coverage

Yep, I think Dan Phillips covers all we need to know about election in this wonderful post over at Pyromaniacs.  Here’s an excerpt:

Today’s American election takes place (normally) every four years on the first Tuesday after the first Monday of November.

The election I’m thinking of took place once only, before the foundation of a world (Ephesians 1:4).

Today’s election involves votes cast by millions of people of wildly varying circumstances, characters, levels of intelligence, and worldviews.

The eternal election only had three participants: God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, each the quintessence of perfection in power, wisdom, holiness, and goodness (Ephesians 1:3-14).

Today’s election requires that I take into account the career, character, accomplishments, stated convictions, and proposals of the candidates. My vote must be earned, in my estimation.

The eternal election actually is not only irrespective of (Romans 9:11), but contrary to the deserts of its objects. It is an election “that we should be holy and blameless before him” (Ephesians 1:4). If that is the objective (or outcome) of the choice, then what were we before that choice, if not altogether unholy, and blameworthy?

Read the post in its entirety HERE


Day of the Reformed

Happy Reformation Day to one and all! This significant, yet overlooked holiday celebrates the historical relevance of the posting of a long list of grievances against the Roman Catholic Church by the Augustinian monk Martin Luther on October 31st, 1517 in the German town of Wittenberg.  Luther’s consternation centered around the repugnant practice of selling indulgences to the poor and naive populace in order to fund the construction of the lavish St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome.

Two great theological issues Luther brought to light were the lost biblical doctrines of justification by faith alone and the authority of Scripture.  They are historically referred to as the doctrines of Sola Fide and Sola Scriptura. Luther, after much wrestling with the scriptures, discovered that man is justified by God’s grace through faith alone.  No human work of any sort contributed to his status before God.  Faith in the work of Christ already done on man’s behalf is the means by which he is declared not guilty before a just and holy God. This doctrine is based upon the belief that the scriptures are sufficient unto all life and godliness for the believer.  No pope or councils of Bishops and religious leaders can add or subtract one jot or tittle from the God-breathed scriptures. Upon this foundation Martin Luther made his stand.  Will we stand with him? God help us if we don’t!

On this occasion, the Day of the Reformed, let all of us who fall under the label of ‘Protestant’ rejoice that we have been delivered from the iron bonds of Romish traditions and damnable heresies. Thank God that he used a frail and thoroughly flawed man like Martin Luther to unveil once again his amazing grace to sinners everywhere through his son, Jesus Christ.

The Material Principle of Modern Christianity

Chris Rosebrough of Extreme Theology has hit a home run with his latest article. He recently attended the Evolve 08 Conference in Cumming, Georgia. Church planters, cutting edge pastors and ministry leaders from around the country gathered together to share ideas. Chris interviewed and conversed with many of the participants to try and understand the CPM’s modus operandi of establishing and growing churches in postmodern America. He has rightly divided the word of truth, splitting asunder their foundation with surgical precision, exposing the central tenant of this dangerous movement. The CPM, according to Chris, has part of its roots planted in the sandy soil of the candy-coated Purpose-Driven Ungospel of Rick Warren’s brand of Baptist theology. I’ll let Chris explain further: Continue reading

Tim Challies on Bible Translations

bible-languages-600.jpgTim Challies has written a nice article on the ‘Beauty of a Good Bible Translation’. He articulated his reasons for preferring the English Standard Version (ESV) over several other modern translations. I have to say he has hit the nail on the head with his observations. I completely agree with his sentiments. The ESV is a wonderful literal translation of the scriptures that many believe captures the poetic flow of the original languages. Here is an excerpt:

Whenever I take the time to read the Bible slowly and meditatively, and this is particularly true of reading the Old Testament, I am struck by the beauty of the language as it is translated in the English Standard Version, my translation of choice. While I do not know how to read Hebrew, I often hear people speak of the poetic nature of the language which leads even the prose to have poetic qualities. It seems to me that the ESV does an admirable job of capturing that. The same cannot be said of all Bible translations. I have come to love the little literary devices, the metaphors and phrases used by the ancient writers and find that they add so much to the reading of the text. Without a translation that accurately rendered these sayings we would lose so much of the flow and meaning of the text.

There is so much beauty in the prose of the Old Testament and I am thankful to have access to a translation (and to several translations, really) that accurately renders the metaphors and phrases used by the original authors. Let me provide you with a few examples. I am going to use the ESV as my standard essentially-literal translation. I do this not necessary to indicate that it is superior to the others within the category, but simply because it is the translation I use for my devotional and study work.

Read the entire article HERE.

A Commentary on Ephesians Chapter 2

extra-c3po1.jpgThe wise sage C3PO once stated, “Sometimes I just don’t understand human behavior.”

Fortunately for us, the inspired Apostle Paul did, and he passed the knowledge and wisdom he received from God down to us in his various epistles. In the book of Ephesians chapter 2, Paul reveals the depths of human depravity, then lifts the readers to the throne of God’s glory in explaining the gospel of grace. It is one of the finest chapters in all of God’s word.

My good friend and fellow blogger over at The Spice Mines of Kessel has labored hard over the past couple of months to produce a commentary on Ephesians Chapter 2. It is a fine piece of work and I am recommending it to you today for your reading pleasure and edification.

I have been privileged to sit under SMOK’s bible study centered on this commentary over the past several weeks. Every session has just gotten better and better and the class size is growing in accordance.

If you want to be wiser than C3PO and better understand the root of human behavior – and what God’s remedy is for it, please avail yourself to SMOK’s commentary and be blessed by the Christ-centric teachings therein.

A Commentary on Ephesians Chapter 2

The Society of Satan and His Gospel

The gospel of Satan is not a system of revolutionary principles, nor yet a program of anarchy. It does not promote strife and war, but aims at peace and unity. It seeks not to set the mother against her daughter nor the father against his son, but fosters the fraternal spirit whereby the human race is regarded as one great ‘brotherhood.’ It does not seek to drag down the natural man, but to improve and uplift him. It advocates education and cultivation and appeals to ‘the best that is within us.’ It aims to make this world such a comfortable and congenial habitat that Christ’s absence from it will not be felt and God will not be needed.” –A.W. Pink

As I prepared to post this I was reminded of a similar quote from a recent article by Dr. Michael Horton entitled ‘Christless Christianity: Getting in Christ’s Way’ originally published in the May/June 07 issue of Modern Reformation magazine. Continue reading

Happy Anniversary to A Peculiar Pilgrim!

A Peculiar Pilgrim has survived heretics, critics, and even free-willies to make it to the big 0-ONE by God’s grace. A Peculiar Pilgrim was birthed into the blogosphere exactly one year ago today- and blogs everywhere trembled. My initial post Road to Reformation -Part 1 kicked off what has become for me a most wonderful and blessed experience (The jury is still out on just how blessed my readers have been). I love blogging, but I love comments from my readers even more (hint – hint!). Always feel welcome to leave your thoughts, even if they don’t agree with mine. It works to sharpen us all as we continue to come to a full knowledge of the truth.

There are several reasons I chose to start a blog. First, I desired to chronicle my story of turning away from my semi-Pelagian beliefs to Calvinistic ones. Secondly, I wanted to help others who were struggling with the whole Church-Growth/Purpose-Driven movement dominating modern Christianity.

In the beginning I actually had two blogs. My other one was titled Post Tenebras Lux (After Darkness, Light). I used it primarily as a discernment watchblog. After a couple of months I realized I barely had enough time to maintain one blog, much less two. I eventually merged the content of Post Tenebras Lux with this one. In April I posted Coming Out from Among Them – Part 1 (the story of leaving my old church) and my blog emerged from oblivion. To this day, that post has more views than any other – by a comfortable margin.

Another reason I blog is to crystallize my thoughts on various biblical topics. My mind is cloudier than a thick London fog. Writing helps to organize my thoughts as well as develop them more fully. Sometimes my posts are fairly lucid. At other times a post may be little more than a stream of thought put to digital text. in the end, blogging has helped to sharpen my convictions and cement my beliefs in the glorious truths of scripture.This may sound strange, but I look forward to reading my posts several years from now and observing how far I’ve come in my knowledge and wisdom of God’s word. Like the saying goes, I am reformed, yet always reforming. Continue reading