October 7, 2014

B003D0TAM8.01._SX490_SCLZZZZZZZ_V190274968_First, some free ebooks. Crossway is giving away Memoirs of an Ordinary Pastor: The Life and Reflections of Tom Carson through October 12. Charis: God’s Scandalous Grace for Us is free today for Nook and Kindle. It looks really good.

In Same-Sex Marriage and the Supreme Court: What Now for the Church?, Russell Moore helpfully comments on yesterday’s Supreme Court move. How should Christians respond now that we know that same sex marriage will be the law of the land?

I appreciated Bleep! Why Christians Shouldn’t Cuss. Here is the short answer: “This is why Christians don’t cuss: we cherish the purpose for which God gave words.” This is at least worth thinking about.

Dan Martinusen yesterday linked on Facebook to Is Your Church Worship More Pagan than Christian?. Again, this is worth thinking about.

Read The Shyness of C S Lewis in Speaking of His Longing for the Far Off Country several times today. You will be blessed.

It is so hard to escape the gravity of being self-absorbed. We fixate both on our sin and our “victories.” C. S. Lewis encourages to look the other direction:

We should, I believe, distrust states of mind which turn our attention upon ourselves. Even at our sins we should look no longer than is necessary to know and to repent them; and our virtues or progress (if any) are certainly a dangerous object of contemplation. When the sun is vertically above a man he casts no shadow: similarly when we have come to the Divine meridian our spiritual shadow (that is, our consciousness of self) will vanish. One will thus in a sense be almost nothing: a room to be filled by God and our blessed fellow creatures, who in their turn are rooms we help to fill.

— C. S. Lewis

God’s Unscrupulous Ways

February 7, 2014

A young man who wishes to remain a sound atheist cannot be too careful of his reading.   There are traps everywhere, “Bibles laid open, millions of surprises,” as Herbert says, “fine nets and stratagems.”  God is, if I may say it, very unscrupulous.

–C. S. Lewis


May 29, 2013

B003D0TAM8.01._SX490_SCLZZZZZZZ_V190274968_Every now and then it is good to be clear about an issue. We might hear these days that homosexuality isn’t a sin. Obviously, I’m not referring to the temptations that might be associated with homosexuality. Some, no doubt, in spite of their unwanted urges say “no” to the sin. I’m thinking about those who believe there isn’t anything wrong with homosexual acts. Scott Clark distills the Biblical teaching on the issue. While I believe the Bible is clear about homosexuality, here is an example of the gymnastics employed to affirm homosexual practices.

How can we tell if God is really at work in our lives and in our church? Ray Ortlund, leaning on Jonathan Edwards, highlights some of the signs.

John Piper has just finished a book about the influence of C.S. Lewis. It is entitled Alive to Wonder: Celebrating the Influence of C.S. Lewis. It is free in the various ebook formats. Looks good.

Those at Bowman get to sing this great song Sunday:

The Terrible Thing

December 18, 2012

The terrible thing, the almost impossible thing, is to hand over your whole self–all your wishes and precautions–to Christ. But it is far easier than what we are all trying to do instead. For what we are trying to do is to remain what we call “ourselves,” to keep personal happiness as our great aim in life, and yet at the same time be “good.” ― C.S. Lewis

Aslan’s Other Name

December 7, 2012

C. S. Lewis to 11-year-old Hila Newman, from New York:

As to Aslan’s other name, well I want you to guess. Has there never been anyone is this world who (1) Arrived at the same time as Father Christmas. (2) Said he was the son of the Great Emperor. (3) Gave himself up for someone else’s fault to be jeered at and killed by wicked people. (4) Came to life again. (5) Is sometimes spoken of as a Lamb (see the end of the Dawn Treader). Don’t you really know His name in this world. Think it over and let me know your answer!

The Collected Letters of C. S. Lewis, Vol. 3 (HarperCollins, 2007), 334

(HT: Dane Ortlund)

We are on the outside of the world, the wrong side of the door. We discern the freshness and purity of morning, but they do not make us fresh and pure. We cannot mingle with the splendours we see. But all the leaves of the New Testament are rustling with the rumour that it will not always be so. Some day, God willing, we shall get in.

C. S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory (New York: HarperCollins, 1980), 43.

“My Dear Wormwood,

Your patient has become humble; have you drawn his attention to the fact? All virtues are less formidable to us once the man is aware that he has them, but this is especially true of humility. Catch him at the moment when he is really poor in spirit and smuggle into his mind the gratifying reflection, “By jove! I’m being humble”, and almost immediately pride – pride at his own humility – will appear. If he awakes to the danger and tries to smother this new form of pride, make him proud of his attempt – and so on, through as many stages as you please. But don’t try this too long, for fear you awake his sense of humor and proportion, in which case he will merely laugh at you and go to bed.

Your affectionate uncle,

C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters, Chapter 14.

Free Stuff

April 24, 2012

My Scottish heritage is once again displaying itself:

Chloe alerted me to the fact that Josh Garrels’ album Love & War & The Sea In Between is free.

Also, Kristen Gilles’ album The Whole Big Story is free. It is a new album with only four songs, however, they are very good songs.

Finally, I was alerted the other day of a very good audio rendition of C. S. Lewis’ book The Screwtape Letters on Youtube. The book is read by John Cleese. Actually, there about five chapters missing but these missing chapters don’t keep one from understanding the flow of the book. Being a fan of audio books, I converted the Youtube videos to MP3s. They can be found here. If it has been awhile since you’ve read the book or if you’ve never read it, I encourage you to listen to it. I think you will find it thought-provoking.