Skip to main content


Showing posts from March, 2009

Husbands and wives

Some years back my wife and I each wrote out what submission and headship (Ephesians 5) meant to us as a couple. She wrote the first part, and I did the second. For wives, what respectful submission means 1. Submission to my husband begins with prayer and submission to the Lord, with an ongoing trust in his plan for my life and his plan for marriage. This trusting relationship with God is the foundation of submission. 2. Submission to a godly husband does not diminish a wife’s significance, importance or personhood. Since it is God’s order, it can only be strengthening and liberating to her. It will bring true joy to her and glory to God. 3. Submissiveness recognizes, values and affirms the tremendous responsibility that God has given the husband in the leadership of the family. Do you fear for him and pray for him, knowing he is one who must give an account before the Lord for the way he led the family? 4. Submissiveness involves prayerful, respectful communication, w

The Conklin Crescent Filler

Just finished repairing a ca. 1920 fountain pen, the Conklin Crescent Filler, given to me by a friend, and now one of the oldest fountain pens in my collection. This is a photo of one fully restored -- mine looks just like it but still needs a new clip. This 90-year-old pen writes better than any modern roller ball or gel pen, putting down a perfectly smooth, wet line. The body is made of black chased hard rubber (BCHR), and the nib is a gold no. 2, made in Toledo. This is the model pen that Mark Twain used. He acted as a spokesman for the Conklin company. In one advertisement Twain said, "I prefer it to ten other fountain pens, because it carries its filler in its own stomach, and I can not mislay even by art or intention. Also, I prefer it because it is a profanity saver; it cannot roll off the desk." Richard Binder's page on the Crescent Filler is here . Interestingly -- well, maybe I'm one of the few who find it interesting -- the Conklin Crescent is being

Love and discipline

For the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and chastises every son whom he receives. It is for discipline that you have to endure. God is treating you as sons. For what son is there whom his father does not discipline? If you are left without discipline, in which all have participated, then you are illegitimate children and not sons. Besides this, we have had earthly fathers who disciplined us and we respected them. Shall we not much more be subject to the Father of spirits and live? For they disciplined us for a short time as it seemed best to them, but he disciplines us for our good, that we may share his holiness. (Hebrews 12:6-10 ESV) Love and discipline are not two words I can put together very well in my mind. Love is something warm and accepting; discipline seems cold and restricting. Discipline involves training, setting boundaries, receiving correction, and being chastened. Love implies an unconditional acceptance, freedom, being affirmed, and being encouraged. Love

a good place for the Easter bunny?

The spontaneity of worship

And as [Jesus] entered a village, he was met by ten lepers, who stood at a distance and lifted up their voices, saying, "Jesus, Master, have mercy on us." When he saw them he said to them, "Go and show yourselves to the priests." And as they went they were cleansed. Then one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, praising God with a loud voice; and he fell on his face at Jesus' feet, giving him thanks. Now he was a Samaritan. Then Jesus answered, "Were not ten cleansed? Where are the nine? Was no one found to return and give praise to God except this foreigner?" And he said to him, "Rise and go your way; your faith has made you well." (Luke 17:12-19) Edmund Clowney says that one of the big lessons of this story is... "The spontaneity of your worship of the Lord is precious to Jesus." Notice that all ten called to the Lord for mercy, and all ten were obedient to the Lord's direction to go to the priest. All t


I'm working on a series of devotionals on the attributes of God, for a summer missions group. I came upon a few good quotes concerning God's omnipotence, his being all-powerful: "The power of God is that ability and strength whereby He can bring to pass whatsoever He pleases, whatsoever His infinite wisdom may direct, and whatsoever the infinite purity of His will may resolve . . . As holiness is the beauty of all God’s attributes, so power is that which gives life and action to all the perfections of the Divine nature. How vain would be the eternal counsels, if power did not step in to execute them. Without power His mercy would be but feeble pity, His promises an empty sound, His threatenings a mere scare-crow. God’s power is like Himself: infinite, eternal, incomprehensible; it can neither be checked, restrained, nor frustrated by the creature." (Stephen Charnock). “But seeing that He is clothed with omnipotence, no prayer is too hard for Him to answer, no need
For journaling this week I used a 1930s Parker Vacumatic Jr. filled with Skrip brown ink. So even if what I write down is not all that profound, at least it looks good and was fun to write.
The horse photos brought back great memories. Some wonderful pictures here . And I always love the photos by a friend here . She took the water (Cascades) shot below.

Generic, soft evangelicalism

The ARIS study was released, and contains a number of pertinent observations, none very surprising if you've been watching our culture. This quote from the Washington Post article caught my attention, because it is something I also have observed... The number of people who describe themselves as generically "Protestant" went from approximately 17 million in 1990 to 5 million. Meanwhile, the number of people who use nondenominational terms has gone from 194,000 in 1990 to more than 8 million. "There is now this shift in the non-Catholic population -- and maybe among American Christians in general -- into a sort of generic, soft evangelicalism," said Mark Silk, who directs Trinity's Program on Public Values and helped supervise the survey. ... "If people call themselves 'evangelical,' it doesn't tell you as much as you think it tells you about what kind of church they go to," Silk said. "It deepens the conundrum about who evang


Here is where Tolkiens where living with The Lord of the Rings was being written: 20 Northmoor Road, Oxford.
This is where J. R. R. Tolkien was living when The Lord of the Rings was published. Picture was sent by a friend who visited there recently.

Books that changed me, pt 3

The Marrow of Theology, by William Ames. I studied this in a class on Puritan theology at DTS in the mid-1980s. "Faith is the resting of the heart upon God," wrote Ames. Thus began my interest and study of the Puritans, the physicians of the soul. Knowing the Times by D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones. Lloyd-Jones has become an "historical mentor" to me, and it started with this book that I picked up around 1990. MLJ was a prominent physician who became an evangelist to the poor in Wales, and later, pastor of Westminster Chapel in London. His observations and diagnosis of the problems of western culture were ( are ) remarkable. The Pleasures of God: Meditations on God's Delight in Being God by John Piper. This book got me started not on John Piper, but on Jonathan Edwards. I was enriched by the God-centeredness of this work, and it became evident that Piper (by his own admission) was a popularizer of Jonathan Edwards. And so, ad fontes , I began a serious s

Books that changed me, pt 2

The God Who Is There; He Is There and Not Silent; and True Spirituality by Francis Schaeffer. These books by Schaeffer introduced me to the wonderful world of Christian thought and apologetics. I have recently reread True Spirituality , and am reading Schaeffer's Genesis in Space and Time with some young bucks. Designed to Be Like Him (Formerly: Pattern for Maturity ) by J. Dwight Pentecost. I got so much out of this book by Dwight Pentecost in the mid-to-late-1970s, and although Pentecost was not as well known as Hal Lindsay, it was my introduction into biblical exposition and specifically, the ministry of Dallas Seminary. It was teaching like this that influenced my choice for further training. Knowing God, by J. I. Packer. This was a classic, pure and simple. Still is, some twenty years later. It is a wonderful and deep elaboration of the character of God, the sinfulness of man, and the marvel of the gospel. It was probably this book, along with others, that gav

Books that changed me, pt 1

Individual books that made a significant impact on me, in somewhat chronological order over 30 years... some further notes... The New American Standard Bible . The first Bible I had was a KJV. I went to a Cru retreat where the speaker was teaching from 1 Corinthians 13, and he said that the KJV's "Charity suffereth long..." really meant "Love is patient..." I told somebody, well then why doesn't somebody translate a Bible that says what it means? They pointed me to the NAS-NT which had just come out and I picked up a copy and devoured it. During seminary I came to realize how literally accurate the NAS was. The Chronicles of Narnia, by C. S. Lewis. My introduction to C S Lewis came through Aslan in 1971. My heart has been in Narnia ever since. I appreciate Lewis's approach that the best of the fairy tales is but a shadow of the reality of the truth. Lewis, and Jonathan Edwards -- whom I came to read much later -- both had this in common: a pro