The New Atheism - Mohler at DTS

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Here are some helpful videos to help understand the new breed of atheism, i.e. a militant atheism. As always, Mohler, the president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary provides a helpful analysis.

Session 1: The New Atheism and the Endgame of Secularism

Session 2: The New Atheism and the Assault on Theism

Session 3: The New Atheism and the Defense of Theism

Session 4: The New Atheism and the Future of Christianity

Song for the Suffering Sons

Monday, April 21, 2008

All creation heaves and groans,
Travailing with no repose. 
A single desire deeply moans 
In these sons' turbid souls.

O, come forth, My faithful child,
And behold your great reward:
My Son, your Brother, mild—
A body like His—triumphant and scarred.

Joyfully bear the weight of glory whole! 
A dangerous delight, in Me, to embrace—
Now! The absence of sinful flesh's control
For Terror turned to gladness by Holy grace.

Oh, what hope of blissful day
Upon our tired hearts descend.
Stand firm! bruised heels of clay
For soon He comes, the skies to rend.

Ignorance is the New Science: The Arrogance of Man in Contemplating Male Nipples

Sunday, April 20, 2008

I happened upon the article Top 10 Useless Body Parts. Fairly certain that I would disagree with it, I debated reading it. I read it and was annoyed. Now, I am a huge proponent of science. After all, I have a degree in mathematics, and my thesis was entitled Analysis of Optimal Controls for Single and Multiple Agent Models in Treatments of Leukemia. (In other words, I am not ignorant with regard to science.) Interestingly enough, the word "science" has its roots in "to know" (see here). Thus, when I got to this part of the article, I was indignant:

"When you're sick you may feel that certain body parts are more trouble than they're worth. And in some cases, you'd be right...[A] few biological traces of our prehistoric ancestors still remain with us in the form of freeloading body parts we lug around with us, but have no use for."

It seems that ignorance has become knowledge and speculation has become science. Let us look past the evolution issue that most of my friends would debate in the article. I am not saying that it is not an issue worthy of discussion, but it's expected and dismissed. Instead, let us look at a fundamental error in the logic. Suppose we examine a structure we know to exist, e.g a third eyelid, body hair, male nipples, etc. However, we do not know what beneficial function this structure performs. Therefore, it must be useless. It must serve no good purpose. It must be vestigial. Behold the new scientific method:

  1. Define (beg) the question.
  2. Gather information and resources from those who agree with you.
  3. Speculate.
  4. Pretend to collect data.
  5. Analyze data.
  6. Manipulate data and draw conclusions that justify your speculation.
  7. State that you are correct to like-minded researchers.
  8. Never question your conclusion again.

My God! O Let Me Call Thee Mine!

a poem by Anne Brönte

My God! O let me call Thee mine!
Weak wretched sinner though I be,
My trembling soul would fain be Thine,
My feeble faith still clings to Thee,
My feeble faith still clings to Thee.

Not only for the past I grieve,
The future fills me with dismay;
Unless Thou hasten to relieve,
I know my heart will fall away,
I know my heart will fall away.

I cannot say my faith is strong,
I dare not hope my love is great;
But strength and love to Thee belong,
O, do not leave me desolate!
O, do not leave me desolate!

I know I owe my all to Thee,
O, take this heart I cannot give.
Do Thou my Strength my Saviour be;
And make me to Thy glory live!
And make me to Thy glory live!

Rejoice With Trembling: The Proper Response to the Anointed of the LORD

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Now therefore, O kings, be wise; be warned, O rulers of the earth.
Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling.
Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and you perish in the way, for his wrath is quickly kindled.
Blessed are all who take refuge in him.

Psalm 2:11-12

God has His people. In the Old Testament, He redeemed a people, bringing them out of bondage in Egypt. In doing so, He created a nation. This nation was to have a king. This was not to be a king like other nations, but a king of God’s appointing. The king of Israel is anointed of God. He is God’s representative, His servant. For someone to come against the king was, in essence, to oppose God. The king was not someone with whom to trifle. Israel longed for the Messiah. We sometimes forget that Messiah and Christ are interchangeable, both meaning “Anointed One”. Therefore, when we speak of Jesus Christ, we speak of the King. Jesus is the fulfillment of the longing of Israel for a proper king.

When we read this passage in Psalm 2, we read this as a characteristic of Jesus Himself. To oppose Jesus is to oppose God. Any ruler of the earth will reckon with their treatment of Jesus. Approaching King Jesus must be done fearfully. What a tension is held in that command: Rejoice with trembling. Knowing that the one you approach has been given all authority in heaven and on earth (Matthew 28:18). Paul writes,

“Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (Philippians 2:9-11).

Concerning the consummation, John writes,

“Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. He is clothed in a robe dipped in blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. And the armies of heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses. From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords. Then I saw an angel standing in the sun, and with a loud voice he called to all the birds that fly directly overhead, ‘Come, gather for the great supper of God, to eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses and their riders, and the flesh of all men, both free and slave, both small and great.’ And I saw the beast and the kings of the earth with their armies gathered to make war against him who was sitting on the horse and against his army. And the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who in its presence had done the signs by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped its image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulfur. And the rest were slain by the sword that came from the mouth of him who was sitting on the horse, and all the birds were gorged with their flesh.” (Revelation 19:11-21)

We flee unto Christ, rejoicing with trembling. Our only hope is in the one who has the power to destroy us. Therefore, let us, who have been born again of God, sing the inspired words of Paul:

“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.” (Romans 8:31-34)

Does Genuine Love Mandate Free Will?

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

An insightful and short commentary on free will and love.  Here Greg Koukl from Stand to Reason probes the statement, "Free will must exist so that love may be genuine."  How does our understanding of free will influence our understanding of God?