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Posts Tagged ‘faith’

If you’re wondering why, say, The Little Sisters of the Poor can’t just sign off on a form and let others go along with the HHS mandate for them, read this (“St. Thomas More, The Little Sisters of the Poor & the Casualness of Conscience,” Tod Worner, January 7, 2014, at Patheos). Well, even if you know already why they can’t, you might want to read the post. It’s a good overview, and a good reminder of some of what’s at stake.

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So, do you think you’re too rotten to be a Christian? Or, in contrast to that, do you think you’re nice enough you don’t need to become one? Take a coffee break, and let Alistair Begg briefly explain to you why you’re wrong, why it matters, and what to do about it.

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Over at The Common Room, Headmistress has written a review of one of my books, and uses it as a springboard, too.

 

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Do you think you know? Is it the same reason He gave? Check out Take Care Then How You Hear (5/26/2013) to find out. (Alternate direct link here.)

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… is An Unconscionable Threat to Conscience: Donald P. Condit, M.D., responds to Obama administration mandates that pit government power against what is held sacred by people of faith. Includes links to responses of others.

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If you find yourself in a church (or other group of people) that is welding people to sin instead of God, may I suggest that you run for your eternal life?

(You have one, you know.)

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Historian Thomas S. Kidd provides some background and perspective on tomorrow’s holiday in the United States.

And just in case you don’t know, technically we shouldn’t be calling the Pilgrims of the Mayflower “Puritans.” Kidd explains:

The Pilgrims of Plymouth Colony weren’t the first Europeans to settle in North America, nor were they the first permanent English colonists. But because of our annual celebration of Thanksgiving, and our hazy images of their 1621 meal with Native Americans, the Pilgrims have become the emblematic colonists in America’s national memory. Although modern Thanksgiving has become largely non-religious—focused more on food, family, and football than explicitly thanking God—the Pilgrims’ experience reveals a compelling religious aspect of our country’s roots.

Although people often refer to the Pilgrims as “Puritans,” they technically were English Separatists, Christians who had decided that the state-sponsored Anglican Church was fatally corrupt, and that they should found their own churches. (The Puritans, who would establish Massachusetts in 1630, believed in reforming the Anglican Church from within.) Establishing independent churches, however, was illegal. Under heavy persecution, some Separatists decided to move to Leiden in the Netherlands around the same time that the Virginia Company founded Jamestown in 1607.

The Netherlands offered the Separatists religious liberty, but the Pilgrims also became concerned about the negative influences of living in such a culturally diverse society. So in 1620, 102 settlers sailed to America on board the Mayflower. Their final Old World port was Plymouth, England, which supplied the name for their new settlement in what became southeastern Massachusetts.

Read the rest of the article here.

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From Not Exactly Dead (MI5 1/2 Series, Book One), available at Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and through your favorite bricks and mortar store:

8 – FIVE IN THE MORNING, PART 1

He was glad the woman had called ahead. These days it was hard to be coherent before eleven in the morning without at least a half hour’s head start to clear the cobwebs away. And here it was only 5 a.m. Not that an old man could sleep for more than a few hours at a time anyway, so what did it matter, really, what time he got up?

According to his sources, the woman had more than usual on her plate these days. Big, bad stuff, too. He hoped he could help. Living to be ancient ought to count for something, after all.

“And how’s my best protégé this morning?” the gnarled old man asked, over his second cup of coffee, as Zanna Wyatt stepped into the room.

“In need of a cup of coffee,” she said, with a mischievous grin.

The man adjusted his trifocals, and looked more carefully at her. As a matter of fact, she did look in need of some sort of pick me up, despite her flawless dressing and nearly perfect grooming. He waved his hand at the coffeepot. She helped herself.

Zanna sat and looked quietly around the room.

“It’s swept,” the old man assured her, meaning the room had been checked for electronic bugs and other unwelcome presences. Considering her security clearance and the sorts of things they usually discussed, it had to be done before each visit.

“I don’t know if you can help me, but I’m at sea on something,” Zanna said. She slouched in her chair, and ran her hand through her hair. She shook her head as if shaking loose stray thoughts. “Are you on your first cup or your second?” she asked, looking at his coffee.

“Don’t want to waste your time, eh? Good girl.” He laughed. “Second cup. Ask away. I’m as awake as you’ll get me.”

“Do you know Richard Hugh?”

“Name’s familiar,” he fudged.

“Triple-O Five,” she prompted.

“I’ve met him once or twice. Never talked with him, to speak of. What-ever his record is, not much is coming to mind, other than it’s generally favorable.”

“All right. How’s this? You do know the Prime Minister?”

“Yes, fairly well.”

“He comes from the same part of the country as you, doesn’t he?”

“Yes. We’re distant cousins, if that’s of any use.”

“He and Richard Hugh went to school together.”

“Some sort of years-old trouble coming to the surface?”

“No. I’m not heading in that direction. Well, not exactly. Here’s the situation: I think I’ve run into some sort of folklore that’s peculiar to that part of the world, and I don’t understand it.”

The old man grinned. He was rather proud of the things that were peculiar to his shire. The thought of a homogenous world depressed him, for one thing. For another, his birthplace was only one step higher than dirt poor. About all it had to call its own was its unique way of life and its legends. He could brag on those ‘til doomsday, if he could keep an audience.

Zanna started to ask about the grin, but thought better of it. “What’s this about twins being bad luck?” she asked. (more…)

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Yesterday’s sermon included the rather familiar passage about putting on the armor of God – but with an emphasis on the fact that God provides the armor, but you have to put it on. A lot of Christians seem to miss that, the pastor said. Their armor, so to speak, sits on the floor, and might even get polished up from time to time, but it’s not used. Food for thought, that.

From Ephesians 6 (King James Version), via Bible Gateway:

10Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

11Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

12For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

13Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

14Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

15And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;

16Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

17And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

18Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

19And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel,

20For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.

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It matters what you base your ethics on.

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