Weekend Roundup: Seven Articles for your Musings

Teaching Children About Heaven: Answering Your Child’s Questions: As any parent knows, kids ask great questions and their questions about heaven are no exception. Are you ready to answer? Wise parents help prepare their children for the deaths of loved ones and the assurance of Heaven for those who know Jesus. In this article Randy Alcorn answers 6 questions children commonly ask about heaven. I know mine have asked a couple of these before!

Top Parenting Posts: I always love at the end of the year how the blog’s I follow highlight their most popular post’s throughout the year. In this article Paul Tripp shares the top three parenting posts for this year. If you are a parent I highly recommend reading these! As Tripp reminds us: “There are few things in life as important as the shaping of a human soul, and God has ordained the parent, in the context of the family, to be the primary instrument in the process.”

Flannel Shirts and Sound Theology: What do flannel shirts have to do with sound theology? Read and find out!

Ten truths that will get you through Christmas: Todd Friel puts us on the “truth train” to help us change our attitude, emotions and feelings about being with our in-laws and other difficult people over Christmas. I thought the 6th one to be very true and often overlooked. Are you on the “truth train?”

A fair analysis of the new NIV: Did you know that in 2011 Zondervan published a new NIV? In this article Si Cochran gives some good food for thought about it.

Common English Errors in English Usage Daily: Butt naked/buck naked: Who knew?

A Functional Car Built Out of Legos: I know…this falls more in the category of “amusement” but it is too incredible to pass up. It definitely takes Lego building to a whole new level and it is powered by air!

The Supremacy of Christ and Riding My Bike

Sunday afternoon I went for one of my bike rides around the out skirts of town and as usual I had my iPod with me loaded with veritable goldmines of Christ-centered, bible-saturated sermons to choose from for the edification of my heart and mind and as Providence would have it this time I listened to a sermon by a man who is quickly becoming one of my favorite living preachers Voddie Baucham. His text was Colossians 1:15-22 and his topic was, “The Supremacy of Christ and Truth in a Postmodern World.”

In this sermon he is answering four questions that he believes every human being is asking, has asked, or will ask:

1. Who am I?

2. Why am I here?

3. What is wrong with the world?

4. Can what is wrong be made right?

He first answers these questions from a naturalistic viewpoint and then answers them from a Christian worldview using Colossians one. It is powerful sermon that I would strongly encourage you hear and heed unto (click here to listen). Below I have transcribed a portion that deeply struck me as I was biking. In this transcribed section he is answering the question “What is wrong with the world:”

I have students come up to me all the time after taking a semester in philosophy. There ought to be a rule: You should not be able to talk about philosophy unless you had more than a semester of philosophy. (crowd laughs) If you haven’t had any that is fine but if you have had a semester you are messed up. You are better off just not taking it at all. And they will come up and they will say things to me and they have thought these things out. And I am on the campus to talk about these issues and dealing with apologetics and they want to catch me alone and ask me these questions and they look at me and say, “I just want to ask you if you believe a God that is omnipotent and omnibenevolent than how do you reconcile the issue of theodicy?” To which I respond, “You took a semester of philosophy right?” (crowd laughs) “Well yes how did you know?” “Because if you hadn’t you would have just said, ‘Listen, God is so powerful and so good how come bad stuff happens?’” (crowd laughs) But I am not going to answer the question until you ask it correctly. (Baucham laughs) “I worked on that all week, what do you mean ask me correctly?” “You are not asking the question properly.” “What do you mean ask the question properly? It’s my question you can’t tell me how to ask my question.” “I will answer your question when you ask it properly.” “How do I ask it properly?” “Here is how you ask that question properly. Look me in my eyes and you ask me this, ‘How on earth can a holy and righteous God know what I did and thought and said on yesterday and not kill me in my sleep last night?’ You ask it that way and we can talk but until you ask the question that way you don’t understand the issue.” Until you ask the question that way you believe the problem is out there. Until you ask the question that way you believe that there are somehow some individuals who in and of themselves deserve something other than the wrath of Almighty God. Until you ask me the question that way, until you flip the script and ask the question this way and say, “Why is it that we are here today? Why has he not consumed and devoured each and every one of us? Why? Why O God does your judgment and your wrath tarry?” When you ask it that way you understand the issue. When you ask it the other way you believe in the supremacy of man. How dare God not employ his power on behalf of almighty man. You flip the question around you believe in the supremacy of Christ. How dare I steal his air. Because the last breath I took I borrowed it from him. I am never going to give it back. When you borrow something and never give it back you are stealing. (crowd laughs) Some of you need to take a moment and get right, right now (crowd laughs and so does Baucham) The problem is me. The problem is the fact that I do not acknowledge the supremacy of Christ and truth. The problem is I start with me as the measure of all things. The problem is I judge God based upon how well he carries out my agenda for the whole world. And I believe the supremacy of me and truth. And as a result I want a God who is omnipotent but not sovereign. If I have a God who is omnipotent but not sovereign I can wield his power. But if my God is both omnipotent and sovereign. I am at his mercy.

Remember, I am riding my bike when while I am listening to this and quite winded already because I don’t bike for leisure but to get a good cardiovascular exercise and so when I heard the part of “stealing His air because the last breath I took I borrowed from him…” Well let’s just say it took what air was left in me right out of me and caused my heart to praise God for even the air I breathe is his and to be used to exalt his awesome name! What a powerful reminder of the supremacy of Christ and that life is not about me but about God and living for his glory!  1 Corinthians 10:31 says to do all things to the glory of God and that even includes biking! God is both sovereign and omnipotent. I am at his mercy.

Are We Raising a Nation of Wimps?

One of the books I am currently reading is “Culture Shift: Engaging Current Issues With Timeless Truths” by R. Albert Mohler Jr. It is a wonderful book full of essays that address a wide variety of topics clearly, biblically, and passionately: Christian faith and politics, The Supreme Court and religion, The truth about terrorism, Christ parents and public schools, the abortion debate, Christian repsonse to global tragedies, and more!

As Christians we are told in the Scriptures, “…Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have… (1 Peter 3:15) and “Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone (Colossians 4:11). This book will help prepare you to obey these scriptural exhortations! This book will prepare you to address some of the most challenging cultural issues of our time.

The most recent essay I read is titled, “Are We Raising a Nation of Wimps?” It is available to read here for free. I highly recommend it, and all the other articles in here to you! Here are some snippets from the essay to whet your appettite:

Our kids are growing up to be pampered wimps who are incapable of assuming adult responsibility and have no idea how to handle the routine challenges of life.

David Elkind, a prominent child psychologist, counters, “Kids need to feel badly sometimes. We learn through experience and we learn through bad experiences. Through failure we learn how to cope.”

That seems to be a foreign concept to many of today’s parents. Coddled by a generation of Baby Boomers, today’s parents have turned into hyper-protectors. Kids are not allowed to play, because they might get hurt. In today’s highly competitive environment, kids have to excel at everything, even if parents have to actually do the work or negotiate an assisted success. The routine play of childhood–even the pointless chatter, nonsense, and aimless play of children–is now considered wasted time or worse. “Messing up” is simply out of style, Marano explains. “Although error and experimentation are the true mothers of success, parents are taking pains to remove failure from the equation.”

Go read the article now and be better equipped to face our ever shifting culture!

Wondering who R. Albert Mohler is? Follow this link to learn more about him.