All Your Ways are Loving, Faithful

Fill up my cup oh Lord of my salvation,

Do not turn your face from me, God the sustainer.

In prosperity I say “I shall not waver;”

Yet I forget from whom it has come.

Be merciful to me, and hear my cries,

So I might not remain in the wilderness of pride.

Fill my heart with The Word from your mouth,

That it’s light might lead me to your face.

You are my joy and salvation,

May I rejoice in your instruction.

For you are the Lord, most holy one,

Great is your name, and greatly shall you be praised.

Exerpt from Psalm 25

Remember your mercy, O Lord, and your steadfast love,
for they have been from old.
Remember not the sins of my youth or my transgressions;
According to your steadfast love remember me,
for the sake of your goodness, O Lord.

Good and upright is the Lord;
therefore he instructs sinners in the way.
He leads the humble in what is right,
and teaches the humble his way.
All the path of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfullness,
for those who keep his covenant and his testimonies.

Psalm 25: 6-10

Health, Wealth, Prosperity

Jude 1 :4 For h certain people i have crept in unnoticed j who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert k the grace of our God into sensuality and l deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.

Who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality-

They pervert (twist and distort) the grace (unmerited forgiveness of sins) into an expectation or licence for the sensual lusts of the flesh.


I will not be posting here until the beginning of the next academic year.

The Heaven's Rejoiced

Noah never saw it happen.

All glory be unto God that I have.

Luke 15:10 "Likewise, I say to you, there is joy the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents"

Dedicated to Samatha Hastings the sixth of June in the year two-thousand and nine.

I Sing the Mighty Power of God

I Sing the Mighty Power of God-

I sing the mighty power of God,
that made the mountains rise,
that spread the flowing seas abroad,
and built the lofty skies.

I sing the wisdom that ordained the sun to rule the day;
the moon shines full at God's command,
and all the stars obey.

I sing the goodness of the Lord who filled the earth with food,
who formed the creatures through the Word, and then pronounced them good.

Lord, how Thy wonders are displayed where'er I turn my eye,
if I survey the ground I tread,
Or gaze upon the sky.

There's not a plant or flower below,
but makes thy glories known,
and clouds arise and tempests blow by order from Thy throne.

While all that boorrows life from Thee is ever in thy care;
and everywhere that we can be, Thou, God, art present there.

Creation has confessed,
that you have given breath
from heaven to the depths.

Kings of earth and everything
that lives now with us sing
and let your glory ring
o'er every mountain crest!

Creation has confessed,
that you have given breath
from heaven to the depths.


There are times when the words that we speak are helpful to our understanding, and other times when they simply confuse us. Here is one that I found to be confusing, but once I understood it, it became quite helpful.

Justification - The work that God has already done for you. This work is the gift of life, for by Jesus' justificatory and substituational work at the cross, you are made clean. It is Jesus' work on the cross which justifies you as a Child of God. When you come before the judgment seat, you will have to give an account for what you have done in this short time. If God were to ask you why you should be let into heaven, the only acceptable reason is that your soul's position is in Christ who has justified you through his work on the cross to be partakers of light.

Justification : Col 1:12-14 "Giving thanks to the Father who has qualified us to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in the light. He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of his love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins."

Justification: Col 1: 19-22 "For it pleased the Father that in Him all the fullness should dwell , and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross. And you, who once were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled in the body of His flesh through his death, to present you holy, and blameless, and above reproach in His sight."

Justification: 2 Cor 5:18 "Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation. Now then, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were pleading through us; we implore you on Christ's behalf, be reconciled to God. For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God.

Concerning the Paradox of Fiction

A short musing on the paradox of fiction and the condition of man.

Paradox of fiction:

a) We often have emotions for fictional character and situations know to be purely fictional.
b) emotions for objects logically presuppose beliefs in the existence of those objects.
c) We do not harbor any beliefs in the existence of objects which we know to be fictional

Separate these three premises seem probable to be true. Yet together they contradict each other. Such is the paradox.

What if our emotional reaction to characters of fiction is the same sort of reaction of empathy that God has to his creation. Surely fiction is created work, and Man made in the image of God places value on creation. Is it then unreasonable to suppose that our empathy for purely fictional created beings and places is a shadow of the way God empathizes with his own creation? It seems that both creations are limited in many extents, and both creations have creators that empathize with them.

The next notable idea is the objection to any argument that tries to claim that we are feeling true emotions about fictional characters. The objection is one that asks if we think characters are real, or have true emotions towards them, then why are we not moved to action as would be true of when we know the characters to be real. I think the answer could very well lie in Jesus Christ (They all do don't they? haha). What I mean is that in man's fallen condition, rarely is a man moved to action unless self-gain is perceived. Or, for someone they believe is worthy of their life, a man may die. But for something so unworthy as fiction no man would dare to die. Yet does this not sound like what Christ has done for us? I am not stating in any way that we should try to die for fictional characters, but simply that the fallen shadow of man sees in part, and in so doing can not reason why we empathize with our creations, yet do not act on their behalf. For me, I sense some eerie connection. Or maybe it's just late with too much philosophy to read. Hrmph.

Consulted -

Emotion in Response to Art : A Survey of the Terrain - Jerrold Levinson
The Paradox of Caring : Fiction and the Philosophy of the Mind - Gregory Currie

Romans 5:7-9 (English Standard Version)

7For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die—8but ">(A) God shows his love for us in that">(B) while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9Since, therefore,(C) we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from(D) the wrath of God.

I'm Confused

I just watched the ABC Nightline Special on "Does Satan Exist." One of the featured speakers responded to the question, "You speak as if God and good exist and are just experienced, while evil and satan are fairy tales. But at the same time you hold true that Good and Evil are different sides of the infinite. I don't understand how your argument says that evil must exist for good to exist, and that you hold to a God that is real, but you don't think satan is real."

The featured guest said, "Any time you put conditions on God or think of God you put limitations on his being. By thinking of God you think of something finite, but you can't do that because God is infinite."

.... So You can't think of God because God is infinite and any thought you have of God is finite. Yet you just had an idea about what is inifite. How can you have a finite idea about the infinite when your argument clearly states you can't. Pretty sure this is a logical fallacy...

... And the other guy said "When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change." If this was true, then science is completely fallacious.

No Longer I, But Christ In Me

  The inherent nature of man to be continually pursing that which his heart desires is something which is readily identifiable across human culture and history. There are two basic states in which the heart loves. It can be a love for an object or concept which is at a distance, and thus becomes a state of desire. Or it can be a love of which the thing desired is possessed, which then becomes a state of indulgence (Chalmers).
The human mind and body go to work daily and readily to fulfill these loves of the heart. It is consumed with obtaining these desires, which give the individual identity and purpose. When the heart is devoid of such desires as can happen when one retires from a profession, such is the strength of desire of the heart to pursue something that no amount of previous success and achievement can possibly assuage it.
It is not enough then simply to preach repentance of sins and abstinence from misconducts. For if only ask of others and ourselves to give up those things which our hearts pursue, yet give them nothing to fill the void, the task will be unfruitful and painful. If the mechanism of the heart is left with nothing to pursue or work towards, but instead is left with desert, the attempt to turn from the desires of the heart will be futile.
We must then exchange the old desires and loves with new, more powerfully intoxicating and capturing than that of the old desires. This must be done through love, kindness, and gentleness, in order to offer a taste of the spring of life which flows out of the regenerated heart. Left to our own corruption and powerlessness, this is an impossibility. One might turn from one sin to pursue another, but by no means does man alone have the capacity to forego sin and be righteous.
The only way for us to exchange our old desires with new ones is by finding a new passion for the heart, and the only way to find righteous desires instead of depraved is through the grace and love of God through faith in the atoning work of Christ Jesus, who paid for sin that our hearts pursue. This faith has been gifted to us, since it was not something we deserved or merited. Since we have then been forgiven much, our hearts see the new desire for Christ, and we love much. In so doing the one who now lives in this flesh is not the one who died with Christ, who nailed my old heart to the cross, but it is now Christ who lives in me and gives my heart the desire to follow after him, exchanging my old desires for new ones.

Consulted - The Expulsive Power of a New Affection - Thomas Chalmers

1 John 2: 15-16 - "Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world - the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life - is not of the Father but is of the world."

Galatians 2:20 - "I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me."

Ephesians 2:8 - "For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast."

My God, My Father

MP3 Download

My God, my Father! while I stray
Far from my home in life
s rough way,
Oh! teach me from my heart to say,
  Thy will be done!

Though dark my path, and sad my lot,

Let me “be still,” and murmur not,
Or breathe the prayer divinely taught,
  Thy will be done!

But if my fainting heart be blessed
With The Holy Spirit for its guest,
My God! to Thee I leave the rest
  Thy will be done!

If Thou should call me to resign
What most I prize, ne
ver was mine;
I only yield Thee what is
  Thy will be done!

Renew my will from day to day,
Blend it with
Thine and take away
All that now makes it hard to say,
  Thy will be done!

My God, my Father! while I stray
Far from my home in life
s rough way,
Oh! teach me from my heart to say,
  Thy will be done!

Thy will be done!

Thy will be done!

Thy will be done!

Thy will be done!

The Masculinity of the Holy Spirit:

In Greek, the word for Spirit is Pneuma (πνεύμα). It is what is translated into English as the Holy Spirit in the Bible. In Greek, the word Pneuma (πνεύμα) is gender neutral. However, it is referred to by several pronouns in the Greek which are masculine. (John 14:26, John 16:13) This would be grammatically incorrect in the Greek, but it is theologically accurate to the nature of God. The Holy Spirit is a He not an it. The Holy Spirit is not some mystical force like in Starwars, or something that is a part of all creation (pantheism). The Holy Spirit is a person/being. Ephesians 4:30 says that when we sin we grieve the Holy Spirit. You can’t grieve an impersonal force, you can only grieve a person. Additionally, Hebrews 10:29 says you can insult him. You can’t insult a force. We can conclude from the Greek, and from descriptions of the essence of the Holy Spirit that He is a Person not an it.


Pneuma (πνεύμα) is an ancient Greek word for "breath," and in a religious context for "spirit" or "soul."


John 14:26 (English Standard Version)

26But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.

John 16:13 (English Standard Version)

13When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.

Ephesians 4:30 (English Standard Version)

30And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.

Hebrews 10:29 (English Standard Version)

29How much worse punishment, do you think, will be deserved by the one who has spurned the Son of God, and has profaned the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified, and has outraged the Spirit of grace?

The Church : Hospital for Sinners

The Christian church is a hospital for sinners, not a museum of Saints. It’s a common misconception for a secular view of a religious establishment to be a place where a bunch of people who think they're good get together to be with other good people. Yet one of the central tenants of Christianity is that everyone is a completely, corrupt, depraved sinner. Anything and everything that has any moral value or of intrinsic good comes down from above. James 1:17 says "Every good and perfect gift comes down from above ... from the father of lights." This is what we in Christ call common grace. All abilities and moral intuition, all true love and beauty is given to everyone and everything for the preservation and enjoyment of the world, pointing back to the creator. All true Christian churches believe that man is evil. Therefore the transforming of Christians into being more Christ-like is a gradual process that begins at the worst and most broken point. By God's grace Christians are transformed from one aspect of glory to another, slowly changing the pattern of their lives to become more Christ-like by a work that is not of their own.

So when society see's the glaring character flaws that exist within the Church, they see rightly, that Christians are completely messed up, jacked up, and fouled up. Just like society is. It's the misconception that the Church should be a museum of Saints, when in reality it is God's hospital for sinners, that causes them to scoff.

Moral Reletivism:

            In our post-modern society, and particularly culture hubs like Seattle, often times there are particular views and ideas which are labeled as "enlightened" or "transcendent." A particularly popular and heeded philosophy is moral relativism.

 As a definition moral relativism is: an action “X” (performed by a particular culture group “G”) is right if and only if the moral norms that are accepted by “G” permit the performance of that action.

With this, the “enlightened” individual is able to make many arguments that on the surface appear to be quite compelling.  The argument must say something like “there are no correct moral norms or principles that are valid for all cultures at all times; but rather only moral principles that are accepted by a culture group at a particular time and that those accepted principles make actions right. Often times this is the basis for an argument that often takes a self-righteous tone of accusing a lesser “enlightened” being of judging where they have no place to judge.

However, when examined, this particular argument has serious logical problems.

1) This argument says that there are no absolute moral norms or principles, or absolute truth. Yet the argument itself makes an absolute claim. In other words, from what absolute vantage point does the moral relativist theory make the claim that there is no absolute truth?

2) This argument gives us no logical way in which societies view’s change. In fact, by definition, a culture’s views should stay constant under this theory. How is it that different cultural principles come about (as is evident that they do)

3) By this theory, what a society believes is right is right, and it’s right because the society believes it is. From this vantage point, the moral relativist must succeed that if one country, call it invasia, had moral principles that called it to invade other countries, it is right for them to do so. By this theory, if it is granted that Nazi Germany as a culture held the moral principle that killing Jews was a good thing, then for Nazi Germany, killing Jews was the right thing to do.

4) Does the rightness or wrongness of an action simply come from what the majority of a culture believes? Is the morality of abortion really stem from just what we believe as a society? I’m not sure this is something that would hear a resounding yes even if you did believe abortion was morally permissible. If it was so, why not put everything to a vote and be done with it?

Works consulted: "Disputed Moral Isssues" by Mark Timmons & "The Reason for God" by Timothy Keller


In light of last week’s discussion, and today’s sermon, I found this text to be helpful in getting a functional definition for idolatry.

Source Text – Death by Love, by Mark Driscoll & Gerry Breshears:

" …Furthermore – and it may surprise you – the opposite of the gospel is idolatry. Idolatry is worshiping someone or something other than God. By worshiping I mean that we make sacrifices (e.g. time, energy, money, emotion, thought) so that we can give ourselves to someone or something because it is our highest priority. Everyone is a worshiper for the simple reason that we are made by God to worship and cannot help ourselves. But because we are sinners, we are prone to worship created things rather than God the creator. Romans 1:25 teaches that this is at the root of all paganism/idolatry, saying, ’They exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator." This is a complete inversion of the purpose of our creation, which is to worship God and rule over created things as shown in Genesis 1:26-28.

Martin Luther taught that idolatry is, therefore, not just a sin but
 THE sin that is the cause of all other sins. He went on to argue that the first two of the Ten Commandments bear this out (Ex. 20:1-17). The first two commandments tell us that there is only one God and that we are to worship only that God, which is why we are forbidden from worshiping anything in place of or in addition to the one true God. Therefore, Luther reasons, we break the other commandments and do such things as lie, covet, steal, or commit adultery only as a result of breaking the first two commandments. If we break the first two commandments, we become idolaters who then worship such things as our image, possessions, comfort, and pleasure instead of God.

The reason that idolatry is so alluring is that idols promise to make life worth living, bring us happiness, and provide for us a sense of righteousness. All of these desires are good, bu they become evil when they become our focus rather than Jesus, who alone makes life worth living and gives true joy and righteousness…”

The Pitfall of "Religion"

Source text from “Death by Love” by Mark Driscoll and Gerry Breshears -

The Lie: God loves me (or doesn’t love me) for my works.
– Religion demands that we act in accordance with laws out of fear of guilt. Namely that God will not love you. Or transversely, God will love you if you keep these laws.

This is a lie that I find my flesh constantly trying to fall into. I feel that if I can just work hard enough, or do enough “good” works, then I’ll win God’s favor. However, its strictly unbiblical.

Rom 5:8 " But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us."

1John4:7-10 “Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be propitiation for our sins.”

The truth: It is out of God’s love for us that we wish to be like him, to keep his commandments, and love others. Jesus’ love for us frees us from the oppression of works and laws, through his atoning work on the cross. Jesus' work frees us from the tyranny of religion. When we find our Identitiy in Christ, we're given a new heart with new desires which enable us to have the proper response to such illdeserved love. The proper response is devotion for the man who gave himself up for you. So it is now our joy to follow, and listen to Jesus.