Saturday, December 6, 2014

Puritan Prayers, Equipping Eve, The Lightlings, How (Not) to Pray Against Cultural Decline, & more

Here are some good things I want to share but there is no unifying theme or essay to tie them together. Enjoy.

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We find Christ in all the Scriptures. In the Old Testament He is predicted, in the Gospels He is revealed, in Acts He is preached, in the epistles He is explained, and in Revelation He is expected.

~Alistair Begg, Preaching for God’s Glory, Crossway, 1999, p. 36

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Watch R.C. Sproul’s The Lightlings and The Prince’s Poison Cup for Free
R.C. Sproul’s The Lightlings and The Prince’s Poison Cup came to life when they were released as colorful and powerful animatic DVDs in 2009. Today, Reformation Trust is making these two children’s stories, written and narrated by R.C. Sproul, free to watch online forever.



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"We don't live in a post-Christian culture, it's gone beyond that. We live in an anti-Christian culture." RC Sproul

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"The issue isn't a separation of church and state, it is separation of state and God." RC Sproul

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The above quotes from Sproul and Begg were quickly jotted down as I listened to those pastors' sermons on RefNet, short for Reformation Network, a ministry of Ligonier and RC Sproul. It is radio, compete with scripture readings, Q&As, sermons, talks, music, and more. The music has a classical/Renaissance bent to it. The sermons and talks have a Reformed bent to them. It's perfect for me. The only thing I don't like is that because it's radio, I can't pause it when gems like the above come across. I have to quickly jot them down while missing so much other rich material. Good problem to have. Definitely meaty.

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In keeping with the same vein as the ant-Christian culture Sproul talked of, 9Marks has a plethora of good articles this month. Here is just one-

Colonial America and How (Not) to Pray Against Cultural Decline
There is an overwhelming sense among Christians in the West that we are not only in a time of cultural decline, but that it is gaining pace. If that’s true, how should Christians pray? There may in fact be a lesson to learn about praying from our colonial forbears: perhaps God cares less about our efforts at moral reform than he cares about hearts that belong to him.

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Equipping Eve is a new ministry from Erin Benziger of Do Not Be Surprised. In collaboration with and under authority of Pastor Mike Abendroth of Bethlehem Bible Church and her own pastor, Don Green of Truth Community Church, Ms Benziger wrote of the ministry's emphasis:
"a ministry for ladies who love the Lord. From the twice-monthly radio show, to the original articles that will be posted, to the resources that will be provided, Equipping Eve exists to equip women with "fruits of truth" from God's Word so that they will be prepared to stand strong in an age that is ripe with deception."
There has been an introduction and two episodes, with a third coming later today. Please bookmark the site and listen to the half-hour show. And share generously with other ladies.

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Do you ever feel like you are getting into a rut in your prayers? Praying for the same things in the same way? Is a shallowness creeping in and you don't know how to combat it? I feel that way sometimes. I found this book during my search of the Puritans:

The Valley of Vision: A Collection of Puritan Prayers & Devotions
The strength of Puritan character and life lay in prayer and meditation. In this practice the spirit of prayer was regarded as of first importance and the best form of prayer, for living prayer is the characteristic of genuine spirituality. Yet prayer is also vocal and may therefore on occasions be written. Consequently in the Puritan tradition there are many written prayers and meditations which constitute an important corpus of inspiring devotional literature. Too often ex tempore prayer lacks variety, order and definiteness. The reason for this lies partly in a neglect of due preparation. It is here that the care and scriptural thoroughness which others found necessary in their approach to God may be of help. This book has been prepared not to 'supply' prayers but to prompt and encourage the Christian as he treads the path on which others have gone before."
Here is a peek of one of the prayers:

O Holy Spirit, thou hast loved me and entered my heart, implanted there eternal life, revealed to me the glories of Jesus. Three Persons and one God, I bless and praise thee, for love so unmerited, so unspeakable, so wondrous, so mighty to save the lost and raise them to glory.

Amen. Have a blessed weekend and week ahead.


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