Archive for July, 2008

We’ve Moved

This blog has moved to it’s own domain name. Visit the Reformed Fundamentalist Website now.


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Blog Of The Day

What Is Truth by Kent Brandenburg is a great blog if you’re looking for some good reading on Fundamentalism and various other isseues.

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I recently was pointed to the “Patriarchy Movement” by a person on another website. I found the information that I was able to find on it rather interesting. The question here is, is this Patriarchy harmful to Christian families, or to the church? Or is it beneficial?

Here is a link to a number of sermons that are against the “Patriarchy Movement.”

And here is a link to a lengthy article on Patriarchy. I’ll post some snippets here.

The Christian family, especially the role of the father, has been under relentless attack by the forces of secular humanism. Egalitarianism, though arising originally in a legitimate desire to allow all men, regardless of race, to enjoy the benefits of Christian civilization, eventually came to enthrone the will of the individual and to decry ANY differences-including biological ones. In the past fifty years women were “liberated” from the home and promised that they could “have it all” including family, career and autonomy if they adopted humanist values. However, humanism has largely destroyed the American family; birth rates plummeted to sub-zero replacement levels, divorce rates skyrocketed, and millions of children, the victims of broken homes, are now at risk of mutigenerational poverty, crime, and drug addiction; in effect becoming cultural parasites.

First, the name itself often leads some Christians to have a negative disposition before they have even considered the position. The word “patriarchy” conjures up images of stern, Old Testament figure (perhaps with a long white beard), ruling his family with an iron hand, squelching individual initiative, oppressing women and micromanaging every aspect of his children’s lives. Since most will reject that image, we then also reject the concept, without actually evaluating what a “patriarchy” might be and whether or not it is something of which God might approve.

Until the twentieth century, Americans almost universally held to this doctrine of representation in some form or the other. The reason why women were not allowed to vote had nothing to do with women being considered “inferior” or “too emotional” (these values arose during the Victorian era and were themselves theologically and socially deviant) but rather because the husband and father was ASSUMED to represent the family to the broader community. By definition, there could only be ONE representative of the family just as there could only be ONE representative of the Human Race to God!

In regards to a woman’s right to vote; if husband and wife are truly “one flesh” and the husband is doing his duty to represent the family to the wider community, then what PRACTICAL benefit does allowing women to vote provide? If husband and wife agree on an issue, then one has simply doubled the number of votes; but the result is the same. Women’s voting only makes a difference when the husband and wife disagree; a wife, who does not trust the judgment of her husband, can nullify his vote. Thus, the immediate consequence is to enshrine the will of the individual OVER the good of the family thus creating divisions WITHIN the family.

For example, biblical patriarchy never excuses, justifies or motivates godly men to devalue, denigrate or relegate godly women to “second-class” status in the home. Women are NOT inferior to men even if they are subordinate in their roles. Husband and wife are to be “one flesh;” which is more than a quaint euphemism for marital intimacy but rather a spiritual union of two individuals (1 Cor 6:16-17). Granted the wife is to respect her husband and submit to him (1 Ptr 3:1) but the husband is also required to treat her with grace, kindness and respect granting her honor as a joint-heir of the Kingdom, lest God refuse to hear his prayers (1 Ptr 3:7). In pagan patriarchy, the wife was often little more than a domestic servant and child-bearer (as in ancient Greece, the “cradle” of “democracy”) but in the biblical view, God praises the godly woman for her industriousness, creativity, aesthetics and business acumen (Pvbs 31:10ff). A wise man, understanding his duty as representative, will therefore lawfully utilize all the assets of the family, including his wife’s wisdom, gifts and concerns, for the common good of the family.

Now the question is, is this style of Patriarchy Biblical? Is it a Biblical model the family? Is it incorrect, and if it is, why?

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Blog Of The Day

New Feature added to my blog posts, I’ll frequently be linking to a blog of a friend, or just some random person that I sometimes read the posts of.

Here’s an internet friend. This blog is “The Moore The Merrier.”

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Sort of. Catchy title anyway right? Ha!

Micro-evolution is true. Macro-evolution, not so much. What’s the difference you ask? Micro-evolution is small changes that occur within a population of beings(humans, animals, plants, what-have-you). These changes are mutations, “natural selection,” or genetic drift. Micro-evolution occurs at or below the species level. Macro-evolution however, occurs above the species level. In case you don’t remember high school biology, I’ll give you a quick breakdown of the pyramid of life(I just made that up right now, cool eh?). It’s normally called the Taxonomic Rank. Here’s how it breaks down.

Domain-Domain is the highest category of organisms. There are three basic domains, that of single-celled organisms(microscopic), unicellular organisms(microscopic), and then eukarotes, organisms that have complex cell structure like plants, animals, and people.

Kingdom-Kingdom is the second highest category. Within the kingdom that plants, animals, and humans are in, there are five basic categories(some claim there are six). Plants, Animals, Fungi, Chromista(Algea), and Protozae, which are unicellular eukarotes.

Phylum-Phylum is the next category, which contains the many different types of plants, animals and such. there are approximately 36 animal phyla.

Class-Class contains all the different classifications under which we all would be. For example, Mammal is a class. Under Mammal, we have humans, dogs, cats, and bears. Under Reptile, we have lizards, alligators, and crocodiles. Under birds we have eagles, condors, and sparrows. And so on and so forth.

Order-An example of Order would be “Carnivore.”

Family-Families in biology would be different groupings of specimens within an order. For example, under the order of Carnivore, we would have family like Canidea.

Genus-A Genus is a group of related species within a family.

Species-Species is sometimes difficult to define. A species is most commonly defined as being a group of organisms that can breed fertile offspring.

So a simple demonstration of the Taxonomical Rank would go like this:
Eukarotes-Animal-Chordata-Mammalia-Carnivora-Canidea-Canis Lupus-Wolf

Now, micro-evolution would be changes at the species level, in the above example, that would the wolf. Now, we know that there are different types of wolves. In the United States, we have the Gray Wolf, which is the largest member of the Canidea Family. Now, within the Canus Lupus family itself, we have several genus, within those genus, we have species, including the Gray Wolf, and following the Gray Wolf we have the Red Wolf, the Dingo, the Dog, and the New Guinea Singing Dog. There are up to 38 subspecies of the Gray Wolf throughout the world. How did there get to be so many subspecies? Well, that answer probably lies mostly in genetics. Wolves have been known to mate with coyotes, however this is very rare. This also calls into question whether or not wolves and coyotes are actually separate species. The offspring of such a union are larger than a coyote, but smaller than a wolf. Which could definitely account for variations within the Canis Lupus family such as the Red Wolf and the Dog. Because there are various species and subspecies that are capable of intermingling and creating fertile offspring, these offspring can create children that become a different subspecies. Now, within all these differences being made, there are genetic differences going on. This can result in mutations, that can create different different species that are capable of thriving in environments that others possibly couldn’t thrive in. It would also result in creating subspecies that are completely incapable of surviving in the wild, such as the Shih Tzu(I’m sure that’s not spelled right). We can look at creatures like the Great Dane, English Mastiff, the German Shepherd or Jack Russell Terrier, and see how intermingling of species, genetic mutation, and environment can create different creatures that are all from the same species. These are examples of micro-evolution.

Macro-evolution however, would be a change above the species level. Such as the evolutionary hypothesis that dinosaurs evolved into birds by slowly developing feathers. According to evolutionists, micro-evolution creates so many changes over time, that eventually one species can morph into another. In reality, there’s not any proof that macr-evolution has taken place. There’s guesses, but no real proof. It’s hypothesized that dinosaurs evolved into birds, but again, there’s no transitional fossils that have held up under serious scrutiny.

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What’s the key to staying happy as a single, particularly a Christian single? Don’t ask me, I haven’t found it yet. I still sometimes get down about the fact that three-fifths of my younger siblings have all gotten married before me. And yeah, being single for so long in your life kinda gets old. If you’ve been single for any length of time, you’ve probably heard “So when are you going to get married?” or “Have you found anybody yet?” Yeah, that gets old after a while. And annoying. Especially when your parents are like “we need to find you a girl and get you married off.” It’s really not that easy you know. Especially when your church doesn’t have any singles. How bad does that stink eh? And if you do find someone that you may be interested in, you have to figure out where they stand on issues that you deem important. Side issues have some importance, but not as important as say, where they stand on doctrinal issues, etc. And yeah, if you’re a more modest or old-fashioned style dresser, you want somebody who’s there with you. There are lots of reasons that folks are single.

So while we’re single, what do we do? Well, sitting around and moping about your singleness probably isn’t going to help. And neither is running after the first gal/guy who comes along so strongly that they can smell the stench of desperation dripping off of you.

Some people choose to take their time of singleness, and turn it into “fun time.” In other words, they sow their wild oats. Drugs, drunkeness, pre-marital sex, and other activities look inviting to them. They decide to settle down when they get married, but when they finally get married, they carry baggage from all these sinful activities. And this baggage carries over into the married lives, and causes disharmony, distrust, and other issues that but for the grace of God would destroy the marriages of Christians(and many times do destroy marriages).

What does Scripture say for the single Christian to do with their life while they wait? The Apostle Paul gives us some instruction in 1 Corinthians 7.

1Co 7:32-35 But I would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord: (33) But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife. (34) There is difference also between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit: but she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband. (35) And this I speak for your own profit; not that I may cast a snare upon you, but for that which is comely, and that ye may attend upon the Lord without distraction.

Singles are able to serve the Lord without the distraction of families that are dependent upon them for survival. While Christians are single, they ought to use their talents to serve the Body of Christ. They ought to find a way to do something in the local church. And let’s face it, the busier that we are as singles, the less time we have to worry about our singleness and wondering if we’ll ever get married. Now it’s not really easy to do that, I know. Especially since those of us in more conservative and Fundamental churches are more likely to have some concern expressed about our singleness by individuals in our congregations. And while we serve God, it’s likely that our spouse will come along when we least expect it. Point is, for the rest of my single friends(and acquaintances, and my three enemies over there), we need to stay busy, we need to serve God, and we need to quit bemoaning our singleness. We need to accept it, trust God, and move on.

And just as an afterthought, staying pure until marriage is not a bad thing. I know for us guys, it’s hard to talk about remaining pure at our jobs(if we work in a secular environment). You tend to get made fun of that way. Other guys don’t understand it, they think you’re weird. And they’ll try to convince you that having sex isn’t that big of a deal. Just the other night, one of the guys at work tried to talk me into going to a “gentleman’s club” with him and some of the other guys. When I responded negatively to that idea, he asked me why, since it wasn’t like I would be having sex. It’s hard for some people to realize that remaining pure not just in the sense of intercourse but also in other areas can be a good thing. It’s harder for guys in our society than it is for girls. But it’s hard for girls too, I won’t deny that. Oddly enough, I’ve had some unsaved guys express privately to me that they wished that they had at least waited longer, or even until they had gotten engaged or married. Guys and Girls, when you think of it, pray for your future spouse, even if you haven’t met them yet. Pray that they will resist temptation. And pray for yourself, that if they haven’t, you can still love them and not hold it over them because you waited.

It’s okay to hope for marriage, and to pray for the day to come. It’s okay to look forward to finding that special someone. It’s okay to want and desire that special companionship that comes with marriage. But don’t make it the overriding theme of your life. Don’t become known as the single that won’t shut up about being single.

Now a special message for married couples:
GET OFF OUR BACKS!!!! Stop bothering us about when we’re going to get married. Instead of making that such a big deal, encourage singles in your church to get involved. Sponsor a cook-out at your home for singles. Pray for them, encourage them in their day-to-day lives.

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Music can be a bit of a touchy subject in Christian circles, especially in Fundamental Baptist circles. What constitutes good Christian Music? And especially, what constitutes good Christian music for church services? Now, I could be considered by some as too liberal in my music. As far as church music, I love hymns, country gospel, southern gospel, and some CCM. However, there’s very little CCM that I enjoy. And I can’t get too into some southern or country Gospel.
My personal music tastes as far as church music tends to reject music that is too loud, too rocky, or too repetitious. Much of CCM is theological fluff, and too repetitious, even if you reformat it just to be played on the piano or a guitar. And if there’s anything that I hate more than too much repetition in singing, it’s songs that are theological fluff. Allow me to post a video that explains this a bit more eloquently than I can.

Now, not all CCM is theological fluff. Some CCM songs contain great theological truths that put them on the same level as the great hymns of the faith. These songs contain great truths about who God is, what His attributes are, and how Holy He is. Much of CCM is man-centered however, it’s about what “God has done for me” and never gets beyond that, or it focuses on “what I do with God.” And I think in some cases, this reflects where somebody is in their spiritual walk. If somebody never moves past the songs that are spiritual pablum into music that has theological depth, can it really be said that they are maturing as Christians? Now, we must be careful not to judge someone’s spirituality based on what type of Christian music they are listening to in their car. It could be that they are going through a rough time, and God is using that song in their life. Christian music can play a great part in the life of the believer, and so we must be careful that we are not listening to theological tripe.

An example of theological tripe that has made it into CCM music. The following song is done by Brooks and Dunn, a country music duo. But this song is now being covered by Contemporary Christian Musicians. The song is theologically inaccurate, and nothing more than tripe. You can watch the video below(it has rather soft music in comparison to a lot of CCM songs if you’re not sure if you should listen to it or not). If you’d prefer not to watch the video, the lyrics can be found here.

In opposition to a song like the above, we have the song “In Christ Alone” which was written I believe by Keith Getty. This song is much more theological in nature. It’s lyrics contain great depth into who Christ is and what He did for us. Listen to it below, accompanied only by the piano, and read the lyrics here.

In Christ Alone stands in striking contrast to much of what is churned out by CCM musicians today. Of course, when many of the hymns were written, there were other songs put out during those times that were considered theological tripe and that did not stand the test of time. We do not today have the whole of the songs that were sung by Christians throughout the ages, but much of what we do have has stood the test of time and has proven itself to be an asset to the church. Of course, we do have some hymns that really need to be kicked out of the hymnal, since they are theological tripe. While perhaps having some value as folk songs, they don’t deserve to be in the hymnal. I’m sure you’ve heard the following song before. I don’t necessarily have a problem with the song for camp-meetings or what-not, but as a church song? What precisely is it’s value to the church that it gets included in a hymnal? Lyrics here.

In short, Christian Music should first and foremost be theologically correct. It should also contain theological depth, particularly when used for congregational singing. It probably shouldn’t be overly repetitious, as that’s just boring. I’ve watched people’s faces many times as we’ve sang a song that had 7 words sung 11 times, and they just look bored to tears. I know I am. I don’t want a congregational song that’s going to go on for seven and a half minutes because the song leader wants to keep going and going like the Energizer bunny. Use songs that are tried and true, and be wary of the newer music. Listen to it, and match it up to Scripture.

As a parting bonus, here’s one of my favorite hymns of all time. It’s sung by an English singer named Michael Ball here. This is a shorter version of the hymn, but nonetheless very beautiful.

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