A while back Hannah and I took a day trip to Bath. There is a book binder there that has gorgeous leather embossed books that they bind and emboss themselves. Downstairs is a large selection of used old books. I picked up two to start my son’s collection. Hannah and I grew up knowing the value of reading and we have imparted that to Fae and will impart that to Flint when he is born in November. Even fiction plays an important role in the development of children in Christian families. Here is an excerpt from Douglas Wilson from his book Future Men:
In C.S. Lewis’s The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, we are given a good example of a boy who was brought up poorly. Eustace Scrubb had stumbled into a dragon’s lair, but he did not know what kind of place it was. “Most of us know what we should expect to find in a dragon’s lair, but, as I said before, Eustace had read only the wrong books. They had a lot to say about exports and imports and governments and drains, but they were weak on dragons.”
It is a standing rebuke for us that there are many Christians who have an open sympathy for the “true” books which Eustace read—full of true facts about governments and drains and exports—and who are suspicious of great works of imagination, like the Narnia stories, or The Lord of the Rings, or Treasure Island, because they are “fictional,” and therefore suspected of lying. The Bible requires us to be truthful above all things, they tell us, and so we should not tell our sons about dragon-fighting. Our sons need to be strong on drains and weak on dragons. The irony here is that the Bible, the source of all truth, says a lot about dragons and giants, and very little about drains and exports.
Like Eustace in the dragon lair, we do not recognize our surroundings because we have been reading the wrong kind of books, and this in turn causes us to read the Bible in the wrong way. And then, when the time comes to educate our sons, we stuff their heads with soul-deadening, imagination-killing factoids. But if our sons are to be prepared for the world God made, then their imaginations must be fed and nourished with tales about the Red Cross Knight, Jim in the apple barrel, Sam Gamgee carrying Frodo up the mountain, Beowulf tearing off Grendel’s arm, and Trumpkin fighting for Aslan while still not believing in him. This type of story is not allowed by Scripture; this type of story is required by Scripture. The Bible cannot be read rightly without creating a deep impulse to tell stories which carry the scriptural truth about the kind of war we are in down through the ages.
Here is a link to the source EXCERPT:
I am the Light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life. – John 8.12
Anyone can to his own satisfaction confute the claim that Beauty makes, by saying, I do not see it; or the claim inherent in Goodness, by saying, I do not hear it; or the self-evidencing nature of Truth, by saying, I do not know it. But man doe not create goodness, or truth, or beauty; and to say that he cannot see them is to condemn himself, not them. So with LIGHT. – C.J. Wright
I am the creature of a day, passing through life as an arrow through the air. I am a spirit come from God returning to God; just hovering over the great gulf; till a few moments hence I am no more seen; I drop into unchangeable eternity! I want to know one thing, the way to heaven; how to land safe on that bright shore. God Himself has condescended to teach the way; for this end He came from heaven. He hath written it down in a book. O give me that book! At any price give me the book of God! Lord is it not Thy Word- “If any man lack wisdom, let him ask of God? Thou givest liberally, and upbraidest not. Thou hast said, if any be willing to do Thy will he shall know. I am willing to do; let me know Thy will. -John Wesley
If it were in the range of human capacity to conceive a time when God dwelt alone, without his creatures, we should then have one of the grandest and most stupendous ideas of God. There was a season when as yet the sun had never run his race, nor commenced flinging his golden rays across space, to gladden the earth. there was an era when no stars sparkled in the firmament, for there was no sea of azure in which they might float. There was a time when all that we now behold of God’s great universe was yet unborn, slumbering within the mind of God, as yet uncreate and non-existent; yet there was God, and he was “over all blessed for ever;” though no seraphs hymned His praises, though no strong-winged cherubs flashed like lightning to do His high behests, though He was without a retinue, yet He sat as a King on His throne, the mighty God, for ever to be worshipped – the Dread Supreme, in solemn silence dwelling by Himself in vast immensity, making of the placid clouds His canopy, and the light from His own countenance forming the brightness of His glory. God was, and God is. From everlasting to everlasting.
- C.H. Spurgeon (Sermon I: Sovereignty and Salvation, Isaiah 45.22)
Ephraim shall say, “What have I to do anymore with idols?” I have heard and observed HIM. I am like a green cypress tree; your fruit is found in me.
I don’t see how I could gather enough strength to be able to lead my wife’s funeral. Somehow Dr. E.V. Hill with great eloquence, humor and biblical fortitude establishes such a celebration of worship to His God even in the midst of his wife dying from cancer. Take the twenty minutes to laugh and cry listening to the love of a godly man to a godly woman.
Studying last weeks message for sunday I came across a great quote from Bruce Milne concerning John 3.35: The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into His hand.
Here is the quote: The mutual love of the Father and the Son means much in this Gospel…For the love of the Father guarantees the Son’s plenipotentiary powers.
Plenipotentiary: A person, esp. a diplomat, invested with the full power of independent action on behalf of their government, typically in a foreign country.
Plenary is also conceived within this word as well: unconditionally full, coming from the connection between two middle english words: plenarius: complete and plenus: full
Something to think about.
It is part of John’s aim to show that Jesus showed forth His glory NOT IN SPITE of His earthly humiliations, buy precisely BY MEANS OF those humiliations. Supremely is this case with the cross. To the outward eye this was the uttermost of degradation, the death of a felon. To the eye of faith it was (and is) the Supreme Glory.
- LEON MORRIS
“The Bible takes sin seriously because it takes humanity seriously. As we have seen, Christians do not deny the fact of diminished responsibility, but we affirm that diminished responsibility always entails diminished humanity. To say that somebody “is not responsible for his actions” is to demean him or her as a human being. It is part of the glory of being human that we are held responsible for our actions. Then, when we also acknowledge our sin and guilt, we receive God’s forgiveness, enter into the joy of His salvation, ands become yet more completely human and healthy. What is unhealthy is every wallowing in guilt which does not lead to confession, repentance, faith in Jesus Christ and so forgiveness.
- John Stott, The Cross of Christ
It is striking how regularly Jesus approached people from the perspective of their potential. Our concern to declare sin and fallenness of those we witness to must not inhibit our recognition of the possibilities of grace.
God give us the eyes of Jesus.