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Archive for February, 2009


Here is another guest post on the subject of homosexuality.  This time my friend reviews  Desires in Conflict, Hope for Men Who struggle with Sexual Identity by Joe Dallas.

The updated version of this book was written in 1991 but the message stands true still. As the subtitle states, the book gives hope for men who struggle with sexual identity. If you are not one of those men, then this book is not for you.

Joe Dallas [click for his counseling website] also wrote When Homosexuality Hits Home, What to Do when a Loved One says They’re Gay. This book offers up step-by-step advice on how to deal with the emotions family members deal with when they learn of a loved ones homosexuality.

But back to Desires in Conflict. Joe Dallas tells his story, guides men on what to expect when dealing with their particular issues.

Homosexuality is no different. Like all sinful tendencies, homosexual attractions need not rule you or continue to be a predominant force in your life. Specifically, you can expect change to occur in one or all of four ways.”

Here is the list:

1. Change in behavior

2. Change in the frequency of homosexual attractions

3. Change in intensity of homosexual attractions

4. Change in perspective

Nowhere do we see in that list that homosexual attraction disappears.

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The Celtics didn’t do much near the trade deadline.  They basically created roster spots by shipping out Sam “I Am” Cassell, aka The Alien, and the seemingly useless Patrick O’Bryant.  I don’t think Sam suited up for any games, but probably spent time talking with Rondo about leading a team.  Patrick O’Bryant played some, but when Kendrick Perkins was out, he didn’t gain significant minutes.  He didn’t work hard enough to convince Doc to play him.

To fill those spots, the Celtics watched the waiver wire.  First, they got some more of 7-footer Mikki Moore.  He was on the Celtics roster for a short time back in 2003.  He adds size and experience.  With the presence of the real stars, he can thrive- maybe.  They are not counting in him to be a big time player, but a sub who can help them win another title.  He might.

Then, today we learned that Starbury has been bought out and should sign with the Celtics when he clears waivers.  I’m not sure about this one.  The guy has proved himself to be a pain.  But, with a short-term contract he just might behave himself and add some punch off the bench.

I’m not overly impressed with either pick up.  But we didn’t need a star.  We needed some reliable veteran players to stabilize the bench, provide some depth for the playoffs and not poison the locker room.  Not a tall order.  Hopefully they can deliver, and enable the Big 3, Rondo, Perk & House to win another title.  Just like Lays’ Potato Chips, you can’t have just one.

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Bible Study Magazine and Mars Hill are giving away 20 copies of Mark Driscoll’s new book, Vintage Church. Not only that, but they are also giving away five subscriptions to Bible Study Magazine and a copy of their Bible Study Library software! Enter to win on the Bible Study Magazine Mark Driscoll page, then take a look at all the cool tools they have to take your Bible study to the next level!

PS- the Cavman uses Logos Bible Study Software, but could use an upgrade.

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I made a joke on a friend’s Facebook wall the other day.  He lamented playing too much ping-pong in seminary.  I joked that his ministry would be more effective if he hadn’t.  It’d be more like mine …

I figure he’s having a pretty effective ministry.  The church I pastored closed (lots of reasons for that).  I, by no means, took Winter Haven by storm for the Gospel.  But I had some meaningful ministry over those 9 years, and in the 1 1/2 years since then as I’ve done pulpit supply.

Lest we make too much of that (failure), let’s consider the Apostle Paul.  I did while trying not to wake up this morning.  Paul didn’t take every town he visited by storm.  Yes, he saw conversions- I saw a few of those.  He saw Christians grow- saw some of that too.  But he was run out of more than a few cities.  There were riots, a stoning, death threats and more.  Being run out of town might say something about you, but it also says something about those who ran you out of town.

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Yes, I haven’t been too active on the lately.  That is what happens when you are juggling three p/t  jobs.  Here’s what is happening, if you care.

In addition to my Stated Supply gig, I’ve gotten jobs at a hardware store, and the local hospital.  The church has called a new pastor, and my services will not be needed much longer.  So, a friend offered me a seasonal job in their store to accumulate some resources.  I also got an “on call” position as an EKG tech with the hope that with my foot in the door I can get a f/t postion if one opens up.  But now I’m in training for the better part of 2 weeks.

All this has me running in 3 very different directions.  Actually more since I’m still looking for a new church to pastor, and a full-time job locally for the transition.  Don’t forget the reality of being a husband and father.

As a result, there has been far less time for reading and writing.

The last couple of months have been busy on the pastoral search front.  There are a few churches that are considering me- nothing serious, but I’ve had more interviews in the last few months than in the previous 2 years.  So it is interesting to say the least.  We continue to pray for the right door to open up, and for God to provide for us during the transition.

It has been a long, strange journey the past few years.  We don’t understand much of it.  At times it has been quite painful for us- repeated rejection can be that way.  But we have been able to minister to a number of people.  My gifts have been used to the furtherance of God’s kingdom.  CavWife has been able to encourage others as well.  It is like we are on parade as evidence of God’s sustaining grace.  Not quite where we want to be, but there nonetheless.

For now we continue to be faithful, pray, wait and interview.  I’ll blog as I have time.  And maybe I’ll have some REALLY good news soon.

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This week’s text in Galatians focuses on adoption, God’s adoption of sinners as His sons as a result of Jesus’ work of redemption for us.  J.I. Packer comments that you can’t really understand Christianity unless you understand adoption.  John Calvin says you aren’t really a Christian unless, by the work of the Spirit, you call God your Father.

There are not many books on this topic.  It is a much neglected topic- but there are a few great books just the same.

Great Books I’ve Read:

Children of the Living God: Delighting in the Father’s Love by Sinclair Ferguson.  It is not a big book, but it is a great book.  Ferguson does what Ferguson does best, put the cookies on the shelf so lesser beings can enjoy them.  I can’t recommend this book enough.

Adopted by God: From Wayward Sinners to Cherished Children by Robert Peterson.  It comes recommended by Packer, Ferguson, and Steve Brown among others.  It is a very good book.

Knowing God by J.I. Packer.  Though not on the topic of adoption, there is a great chapter on the topic.  This is one of the great books which influenced me as a young Christian.  That chapter is just one of the reasons.

Redemption Accomplished and Applied by John Murray.  He includes a chapter on adoption as one aspect of the application of our redemption.

Books I’d Like to Read:

Adopted into God’s Family: Exploring a Pauline Metaphor by Trevor Burke.  Part of the New Studies in Biblical Theology Series, this is a more academic look at this topic (which exceeds use by Paul).

Heirs with Christ: Puritans on Adoption by Joel Beeke.  That should be an interesting read.

John Calvin and the Good News of Adoption by Timothy Trumper.  It is 2 CDs with lectures by Trumper.  Interesting…

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Since I’m preaching through Galatians, one of the topics or themes is justification: how we are in a right relationship with God.  It is the main idea of the letter since they had fallen prey to false teachers with hetero-gospels.

I thought it would be a good time to list my recommendations for books on the doctrine of justification.

Great Books I’ve Read:

The Doctrine of Justification by Jame Buchanan.  This is THE book any serious student of the doctrine must read.  I loved this book, and was challenged by this book.  He traces the history of the doctrine, then explains the doctrine.  There is plenty of historical data (keeping in mind it was originally published in 1867) that helps us gain some perspective on the current deviations from the biblical doctrine.  It is rather lengthy, and this may turn off some people.

Faith Alone: The Evangelical Doctrine of Justification by R.C. Sproul.  R.C. wrote this, in part, in response to Evangelicals and Catholics Together.  He saw that movement as undermining the heart of the gospel.  This is typical RC- good stuff written for average people.  He has a gift for making theology accessible to laypeople.

Justification By Faith Alone by Charles Hodge.  The old Princeton theologian tackles the subject thoroughly in this book.

The Future of Justification & Counted Righteous in Christ by John Piper interact with the current attacks on the historical Protestant understanding of justification by faith alone (but that is not alone).   Piper does a good job, and a fair job, but they are polemical theology.  He is disputing a matter.

Books I Hope to Read Someday:

The Doctrine of Justification by Faith by John Owen.  I’ve got this in my Works of John Owen volumes.  I’ll get there.  He can be a difficult read, but I find it immensely rewarding.  As the subtitle reads, he explains it, confirms it and vindicates it as only he can.

Justification: Understanding the Classic Reformed Doctrine by John Fesko.   A bit pricey, it also looks at the classic formulation of the doctrine in light of current challenges to the doctrine.

Justified in Christ: God’s Plan for Us in Justification edited by K. Scot Oliphint.  It contains chapters by Westminster professors past and present.

Justification by Francis Turretin.  This is edited from his Institutes of Elentcic Theology, which is very good.  It presents theology in a question and answer format.  He was one of the early Reformed “scholastics”.  Sproul highly recommended Turretin when his Eclentic Theology was finally reprinted by P&R.

Jesus’ Blood and Righteousness: Paul’s Theology of Imputation by Brian Vickers.  It covers both the imputation of our sin to Jesus, and His righteousness to us.

Christ, Our Righteousness: Paul’s Theology of Justification by Mark Seifrid.  This is part of the New Studies in Biblical Theology Series edited by D.A. Carson.  A bit academic, but focused on biblical theology.

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