Caution --if you watch this, either the tune will get stuck in your head, or you'll catch yourself joining in . . . This has 23 million hits since going viral.
Living in Light of Two Ages
If you live in an urban setting like Orange County, you know that it wasn't all that long ago that various critters (coyotes, foxes, martens and weasels, etc.,) were commonplace. Driven into the local foothills by human encroachment (areas which are now being developed as well) these various species adjust to life with humans, and slowly but surely begin re-populating their former turf. Seems that badgers are now moving back into urban areas like the City of Orange. Badgers Are Back!
Speaking of critters, I, for one, am sick and tired of Orange County residents being told by city and county officials that the uptick in the coyote population is something "we'll just have to learn to live with." Citizens of one local community--whose missing pets number in the dozens--are demanding that city officials quit bowing to the Animal Rights activists and that those paid to protect them and secure the public welfare, actually do something to remove the coyotes from the area. I've had them in my yard, and you see (or hear) them all over the place at night. Enough! Sadly, it will take a child or an elderly adult getting attacked for anything to be done. No, coyotes do not have rights! Coyotes Need Killin'
Air-Traffic Controllers are worth their weight in fine gold. This is an amazing video of them guiding flights into Atlanta during a recent spate of thunderstorms. Truly amazing. Air-Traffic Controllers in Action
A Sermon on The 90th Psalm
Life is fleeting. The average life span of an American is 78.2 years (75.6 for men, 80.8 for women). That seems like a long time until we consider that the last veteran of World War One (1914-1918) died last year. World War 2 ended sixty-seven years ago. My high school class is holding its fortieth reunion this summer. 9-1-1 occurred more than a decade ago. When viewed in that light, an average life span of 80 years is not all that long. Yet, time keeps marching on. As each and every day goes by we struggle with our sins, we face suffering and calamity, we wonder what tomorrow holds (given the mysterious providence of God), and we worry about facing the wrath of God when we die. In Psalm 90, Moses speaks to this struggle of daily life as he exhorts us to number our days and to live this life in light of eternity.
Throughout our study of the Psalter we have covered select Psalms associated with various authors (David, the sons of Korah, etc.) and Psalms with different content and purposes (royal Psalms, wisdom Psalms, Psalms used in worship in the Jerusalem temple, and so on). As we have done throughout our series, we will look first at the historical background to the composition of Psalm 90, then we will work our way though the text of the Psalm, before we look at the application of this Psalm to the Christian life. We’ve also sung each of the Psalms we have covered during this series–something the Reformed and Presbyterian churches are well-known for doing, since Reformed Christians consider the Psalter to be the primary hymn book of Christ’s church.
We will now take up Psalm 90, the only Psalm written by Moses, which likely makes Psalm 90 the oldest Psalm in the Psalter. As for the historical background to this Psalm, recall that Moses lived about 1500 BC, and David about 1000 BC., so the origin of this Psalm goes back to that time described in the closing chapters of the Book of Deuteronomy when the people of Israel arrived on the plains of Moab, just across the Jordan River from the promised land of Canaan before they crossed the Jordan and conquered Jericho. This puts the composition of Psalm 90 about 500 years before the temple was built in Jerusalem, and well before Israel’s kingdom extended all the way from Damascus to Egypt (under David and Solomon). This is why Psalm 90 has such a different feel than the other Psalms.
Psalm 90 is the first Psalm in Book Four of the Psalter (i.e., Psalms 90-106). Most of the Psalms in Book Four are anonymous (the so-called “orphan Psalms”), except Psalm 90 which was written by Moses, and several Psalms which are attributed to David. The Psalms in Book Four tend to deal with difficult questions about human frailty and the meaning of life, the nature of justice and God’s faithfulness, and the difficult question of why it is that God does not immediately punish the wicked. These difficult questions about life in a fallen world were raised in Psalm 89 (which closes out Book Three of the Psalter, and which is a Psalm of lament because of Israel’s sin). These questions are addressed, in part, throughout the various Psalms found in Book Four.
To read the rest of this sermon: Click Here
Sunday Morning (August 24): I am beginning a new series on 1 Peter. We'll be covering the opening verses (vv. 1-2) and doing some background. Our Lord's Day worship service begins at 10:30 a.m.
Sunday Afternoon: I am returning to my series on the Canons of Dort. We will be reviewing the articles in the third/fourth head of doctrine we've covered so far (1-11). The catechism service begins @ 1:15 p.m.
Wednesday Night Bible Study: Resumes in September (TBA)
Friday Night Academy: The Academy will resume in September of 2014. Our first class will be a four-week reading/discussion format centering on Dr. Robert Godfrey's book, John Calvin: Pilgrim and Pastor (Crossway, 2009) and Mike Horton's book, Calvin on the Christian Life, (Crossway, 2014). If you plan on attending, you may want to start reading now.
For more information and directions, check out the Christ Reformed website: Christ Reformed Church
Reformation Brazil -- Part 1
With over 40,000 students, Mackenzie University in São Paulo is often referred to as “the Harvard of Brazil.” An institution of the Presbyterian Church of Brazil, Mackenzie had, like countless other schools, succumbed to theological liberalism. But in recent years something amazing has happened. The school has officially abandoned its liberalism and reaffirmed its belief in the inerrant Scriptures and the Westminster Confession. On this program, Michael Horton speaks with the leaders of this movement and of the opportunities for Reformation in the country of Brazil.
Best catch ever? If not, its up there. While we can debate the greatest catch of all time, perhaps we can all agree that the "Angel wings" uniforms are baseball's worst.
Mike Horton's newest book will be released in October. You may recall the White Horse Inn series, "the Ordinary." Michael's manuscript was the basis for those programs.
Here's the publisher's blurb (Zondervan):
Radical. Crazy. Transformative and restless. Every word we read these days seems to suggest there’s a “next-best-thing,” if only we would change our comfortable, compromising lives. In fact, the greatest fear most Christians have is boredom—the sense that they are missing out on the radical life Jesus promised. One thing is certain. No one wants to be “ordinary.”
Yet pastor and author Michael Horton believes that our attempts to measure our spiritual growth by our experiences, constantly seeking after the next big breakthrough, have left many Christians disillusioned and disappointed. There’s nothing wrong with an energetic faith; the danger is that we can burn ourselves out on restless anxieties and unrealistic expectations. What’s needed is not another program or a fresh approach to spiritual growth; it’s a renewed appreciation for the commonplace.
Far from a call to low expectations and passivity, Horton invites readers to recover their sense of joy in the ordinary. He provides a guide to a sustainable discipleship that happens over the long haul—not a quick fix that leaves readers empty with unfulfilled promises. Convicting and ultimately empowering, Ordinary is not a call to do less; it’s an invitation to experience the elusive joy of the ordinary Christian life.
You can pre-order the book here: Mike Horton's Ordinary
When the Academy at Christ Reformed resumes on Friday nights in September (date TBA), we'll begin with a two week discussion of Dr. W. Robert Godfrey's excellent biography of Calvin, John Calvin: Pilgrim and Pastor.
Then, we'll spend two weeks discussing Michael Horton's Calvin on the Christian Life.
So, if you plan on attending, get the books and start reading!