Doug Roman on “preaching”

Good read by Pastor Doug Roman.

Is Preaching Primary or Secondary? Good or Best?

Conclusion:

I conclude that preaching should have pride of place and is therefore BEST. So let us not abandon God’s ordained method of proclamation.

Comment: Doug Roman will be our speaker at the men’s breakfast on November 15th.

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Credit: Starting things off right!

JP: A good read from boundless.org (Boundless is a webzine for singles (from Focus on the Family))

Setting an All-Time Credit Record

Excerpts:

While most future-minded college students do a good job of looking after their academic record, they ignore another kind of record that’s even more powerful: their credit record. Your credit record is your financial reputation. It counts big in this world.

If you want to rent an apartment, buy a house, get a phone hooked up, obtain a credit card, take out a loan, buy a blimp or start a business, you need a good credit record. A company that wants to check your credit can call other companies that have done money deals with you in the past, or they can get a report from a credit reporting bureau. Credit bureaus are private institutions that sell credit information to other businesses. In the U.S. there are many, many small bureaus and three big ones: Experian, Equifax and Trans Union. Creditors, landlords and employers pay these bureaus for reports on people they’re considering as customers, tenants or employees, to determine their financial character.

Both your academic record and your credit record determine which doors will be open to you in the future. But the former loses most of its power the moment you decide to end your academic career; the latter will either lock or unlock the doors in your path for the rest of your life. True, the marks in your record are removed when they’re several years old, but that’s a long time to wait to see a spotty past fade away. And it may take even longer to break the bad money habits that soiled your reputation.

It’s much easier to start things off right. Apply only for the credit you really need, and make every payment on time with no exception. When the time comes for you to buy a home or start a business, your record will precede you, the doors will open up ahead.

True Woman Manifesto

JP: Good read on Biblical womanhood

True Woman Manifesto

Men and women are both created in the image of God and are equal in value and dignity, but they have distinct roles and functions in the home and in the church.

We are called as women to affirm and encourage men as they seek to express godly masculinity, and to honor and support God-ordained male leadership in the home and in the church.

Marriage, as created by God, is a sacred, binding, lifelong covenant between one man and one woman.

When we respond humbly to male leadership in our homes and churches, we demonstrate a noble submission to authority that reflects Christ’s submission to God His Father.

Selfish insistence on personal rights is contrary to the spirit of Christ who humbled Himself, took on the form of a servant, and laid down His life for us.

Human life is precious to God and is to be valued and protected, from the point of conception until rightful death.

The Anatomy of a Bailout

JP: A Christian businessman (see note below) explains “the bailout” and the opportunities the credit crisis has opened for him.

The Anatomy of a Bailout

Introduction:

Twenty years from now, finance students will be studying the Credit Debacle of 2008 trying to understand what happened, why it happened, and what could have been done to avoid it. Much like the Great Depression, we are seeing a series of events that will drastically change the landscape of the American Economy.

As we are faced with this monumental economic event, we are encouraged to believe that this is somehow new and different and therefore more menacing than anything we’ve ever faced. If we read Ecclesiastes we know that there is “nothing new under the sun.” We also know that God is in control and working all things to his purpose. This is a great relief and encouragement to me. I don’t have to worry about the “imminent collapse” of our country. I can rely on a sovereign God!

That being said, we are members of this economy and called to be stewards of what the Lord has given us. How do we interpret these current events and what should we do about them? As I write this article, I run the risk of being labeled as naïve and simplistic. That may be true, but sometimes the most complex problems are best understood in a simplistic light. Some simple observations will give us a framework for processing the “news” we are bombarded with.

Conclusion:

What you and I can do is to learn from this mistake. We need to return to living within our means, to follow biblical principles for borrowing and lending, to being content with the financial situations God has put us in. Not all debt is bad debt; the Bible is clear about that. But using debt to live beyond our means shows dissatisfaction with God’s provision for us. We are called to be wise as serpents and carefully analyze what’s going on in the broader economy. How does this affect the culture? What ministry opportunity does this present? Are there some around us who are needy? How can we adjust our lives to be better stewards of that which God has entrusted us?

This is an exciting time for me personally. I get to reflect to my clients a peace that they don’t understand. A peace that comes from knowing, and believing, that God is truly in control of all of today’s market events.

Read full article here: The Anatomy of a Bailout

By: Chris Bixby, CFP®, EA

Chris is the cofounder and owner of Bixby & Associates Financial Solutions. He is the firm’s principal financial consultant helping clients define their unique financial goals. In 1998 he graduated from Bob Jones University with a degree in Financial Management. After working as a trainee and then an associate for a local Vermont firm, Chris cofounded Bixby & Associates. He holds the NASD Series 7 and 66 securities licenses as well as his insurance licenses.

Comment: Image courtesy of the Arnold H. Hoffer Library.

HT: bigpicture.typepad.com

For more work by Jim Flora, go to JimFlora.com

The great back-story in Ruth

JP: If you appreciate the book of Ruth, this will be a blessing.

Sordid Lineage, Beautiful Legacy

There is a great back-story in Ruth that makes things really interesting. Boaz, who became Ruth’s redeemer-husband, was the son of Rahab. (From the biblical record, it appears that Boaz’s father was Salmon and his mother was Rahab (Ruth 4:21, 1 Chron. 2:11, Matt. 1:5), but since biblical genealogies sometimes skip generations, it’s possible that Rahab was Boaz’s grandmother or great-grandmother. Regardless, her maternal influence in Boaz’s family would likely have had a similar effect on Boaz to the one I imagine here.)

Remember Rahab? She was another non-Jewish woman, a Canaanite and a former prostitute. She and her family were the only survivors of Israel’s conquest of Jericho, because she hid the Jewish spies and helped them escape.

So imagine the stories Boaz heard as he grew up. And imagine how having a mother who had been a foreigner and a harlot, yet was grafted into the olive tree of Israel by the grace of God, affected the way Boaz viewed Ruth that day he saw her gleaning in his field. Other men might have simply seen a foreign woman scrounging for food, like a parasite. But Boaz saw something familiar and dear in a woman who had left her family, her nation, and her gods, to embrace Naomi, her nation, and her God.

It seems Boaz was uniquely prepared by God for Ruth and Ruth for Boaz. Isn’t that beautiful? A marriage made in heaven.

But there was so much more in the works than a fairytale romance. Their union produced a son named Obed, who had a son named Jesse, who had a son named David, who became the greatest king Israel ever had.

Until David’s progeny produced a King named Jesus.

Comment: image from htmlbible.com

Thinking through voting dilemmas

JP: Fictional conversation between a professor and two students asking about voting priorities. Second article is below the blockquote.

HT: Denny Burk

Ballot Box Blues

Excerpt:

Don and Theresa had asked me for critique of their term papers from the previous semester. We were almost finished talking, or so I thought. “Does that help?” I asked.

“Yes, a lot,” said Theresa. She glanced at Don. “What do you think? Should we ask him?”

Don said, “Go for it.”

I gave them an interrogative glance. Theresa asked, “Professor T, we have a different kind of question. Do you mind taking off your professor hat and putting on your older-Christian-mentor hat?”

“I don’t mind,” I said, “but are any other students waiting for me?”

Don glanced into the hallway. “Nope.”

“Then go ahead. What’s on your minds?”

“Elections are coming up,” Theresa said.

“So I’ve noticed.”

“Some of the choices are easy,” she said, “but some are really hard.”

“You know I can’t —”

Don finished my sentence for me. “— tell us who to vote for. Of course not. We wouldn’t ask you to. But maybe you can help us think through a dilemma.”

“Maybe. What’s the dilemma?”

“Well,” said Don, “none of the candidates are perfect.”

I grinned. “Has there ever been a perfect candidate?”

“So what do we do?” he asked.

“If you can’t find a perfect candidate, vote for the least imperfect.”

Theresa broke in. “Don’t you mean the least evil?”

“It could come to that.”

Read entire article


JP: Good read by John Piper.

Let Christians Vote As Though They Were Not Voting

Excerpt:

Voting is like marrying and crying and laughing and buying. We should do it, but only as if we were not doing it. That’s because “the present form of this world is passing away” and, in God’s eyes, “the time has grown very short.” Here’s the way Paul puts it:

The appointed time has grown very short. From now on, let those who have wives live as though they had none, and those who mourn as though they were not mourning, and those who rejoice as though they were not rejoicing, and those who buy as though they had no goods, and those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it. For the present form of this world is passing away. (1 Corinthians 7:29-31)

Pics from fellowship Sunday night

More pics here.

Comment: I’m not sure if this is obvious – but we need a new cameraman! (err .. camera-person!)