Christians Without a Church

Recently we went to a Christian bookstore in town and saw this book. How, I cannot cease to wonder, someone call himself/herself a ‘Christian’ but has no love for the bride of Christ, the church.

I talked to a friend of mine last week and asked if she’s still going to church.  Her answer was, “No, I just stay home and you know…. talk in private and pray.  That’s what is important, right?”

I really don’t think that one can claim to love Jesus but at the same time despise his bride whom he loves and died for.

There’s a short post on Patheos.com on this subject that hammer the points that those who love Jesus cannot at the same time hate the church.  http://www.patheos.com/blogs/chorusinthechaos/loving-jesus-not-church/

A recent issue of Christianity Today published a research article on the make-up of Christians who don’t go to church. 

“They still love Jesus, still believe in Scripture, and most of the tenets of their Christian faith. But they have lost faith in the church,” said Roxanne Stone, editor in chief of Barna Group.

Here’s the link to the article:  http://www.christianitytoday.com/news/2017/april/love-jesus-not-church-barna-spiritual-but-not-religious.html

I’d like to close with this great hymn, “The Church’s One Foundation”

 

The Shack

With the release of “The Shack” movie, I am reposting this old post from 2009.

“The Shack” is a theological FICTION novel by William P. Young.  I was first made aware of it in one of the discussion group mailing lists that I belong to.   If memory serves well it was back in January and I have forgotten about it until this weekend.   On Saturday we went to Costco to replenish some of the household items, and I saw this book.  Today we went to Border’s to pick up a copy of “Glenn Beck’s Common Sense” and once again I spotted “The Shack” on the same Bestselling shelf.

“The Shack” may have gained its popularity that made it one of the bestselling books.  Despite its popularity among Christians, and I would guess, among young Christians, there are some concerns that we need to know about this book- concerns that are far too dangerous to ignore. Continue reading “The Shack”

Year’s End

A prayer from “The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers and Devotions”

O Love beyond Compare,
Thou art good when thou givest, when thou takest away,
when the sun shines upon me, when night gathers over me.

Thou hast loved me before the foundation of the world,
and in love didst redeem my soul;
Thou dost love me still, in spite of my hard heart,
ingratitude, distrust.

Thy goodness has been with me another year,
leading me through a twisting wilderness,
in retreat helping me to advance,
when beaten back making sure headway.

Thy goodness will be with me in the year ahead;
I hoist sail and draw up anchor,
With thee as the blessed pilot of my future as of my past.
I bless thee that thou hast veiled my eyes to the waters ahead.
If thou has appointed storms of tribulation, thou wilt be with me in them;
If I have to pass through tempests of persecution and temptation,
I shall not drown;
If I am to die, I shall see thy face the sooner;
If a painful end is to be my lot, grant me grace that my faith fail not;
If I am to be cast aside from the service I love, I can make no stipulation;
Only glorify thyself in me whether in comfort or trial,
as a chosen vessel meet always for thy use.

Christmas 2016

“Who could do this unless the Son of God should also become the Son of man, and so receive what is ours as to transfer to us what is his, making that which is his by nature to become ours by grace?  Relying on this earnest, we trust that we are the sons of God, because the natural Son of God assumed to himself a body of our body, flesh of our flesh, bones of our bones, that he might be one with us…”

-John Calvin, “Institutes of the Christian Religion”, translated by Henry Beveridge, book II, xii, 2

Electricity Rates Increase

I’ve been thinking about switching our PG&E Electric Schedule from E-6 to EV1.  After punching some numbers, I was quite shocked at how much the electricity rates have gone up in a 4-year period!

After we have installed solar panels, I built a simple program to keep track of our electricity usage, and how much we spent daily, weekly, and monthly.  Thus, I still have the rates from 2011-12 period.

The two charts below show the electricity rates for E-6 residential customers in 2011-12 and 2016. Off-peak rates have gone up  60.6% increase in Summer months from May – October and  58.6% in Winter months from November – April.  Ever wonder why installing solar panels is a good investment?

pgesummer

pgewinter

REALLY?! He Died for the Opportunity?

IMG_20150710_120647Entering Good Friday tomorrow, here is another case of a bad bumper sticker that I spotted on my dentist’s parking lot a few months ago.  REALLY Jesus died for the opportunity?!  No, he didn’t die for the opportunity!  He died for his people whom the Father has predestined in everlasting.

On his short article on Limited Atonment, Dr. R. C. Sproul wrote, “The redemption of specific sinners was an eternal plan of God…accomplished by the atoning work of Christ.” (emphasis mine)

The ultimate question is:  Did the Father send his only begotten son Jesus Christ to die on the cross to make salvation possible for everyone, but with the possibility that he died for no one if no one gave him “no chance”, or did the Father send Jesus Christ to die on the cross to ensure salvation for specific people whom he has predestined?

Click here to read the whole article, TULIP and Reformed Theology: Limited Atonement.

 

Thank you!

At 320,521 miles I bid a farewell to my White VW Jetta today. Bought at around 194,000 miles on June 22, 2010 she had been a very loyal companion on my commute.  She still runs strong, too!

Welcome 2016

2016-new-year

New Year

O LORD,
Length of days does not profit me
      except the days are passed in thy presence,
      in thy service, to thy glory.
Give me a grace that precedes, follows, guides,
      sustains, sanctifies, aids every hour,
      that I may not be one moment apart from thee,
      but may rely on thy Spirit to supply every thought,
      speak in every word,
      direct every step,
      prosper every work,
      build up every mote of faith,
      and give me a desire to show forth thy praise;
      testify thy love,
      advance thy kingdom.
I launch my bark on the unknown waters of this year,
      with thee, O Father, as my harbour,
      thee, O Son, at my helm,
      thee, O Holy Spirit, filling my sails.
Guide me to heaven with my loins girt,
      my lamp burning,
      my ear open to thy calls,
      my heart full of love,
      my soul free.
Give me thy grace to sanctify me,
      thy comforts to cheer,
      thy wisdom to teach,
      thy right hand to guide,
      thy counsel to instruct,
      thy law to judge,
      thy presence to stabilize.
May thy fear be my awe,
      thy triumphs my joy.

(taken from "The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers")