Daily Archives: December 15, 2016

(CT) An excerpt from ”˜The Crucifixion'–The Wrath the World Needs

It makes many people queasy nowadays to talk about the wrath of God, but there can be no turning away from this prominent biblical theme. Oppressed peoples from around the world have been empowered by the scriptural picture of a God who is angered by injustice and unrighteousness. If we are resistant to the idea of the wrath of God, we might pause to reflect the next time we are outraged about something””about our property values being threatened, or our children’s educational opportunities being limited, or our tax breaks being eliminated. All of us are capable of anger about something. God’s anger, however, is pure. It does not have the maintenance of privilege as its object but goes out on behalf of those who have no privileges. The wrath of God is not an emotion that flares up from time to time, as though God has temper tantrums. It is a way of describing his absolute enmity against all wrong and his coming to set matters right.

On September 2, 1990, a murder occurred in New York City that horrified the nation. The Watkins family from Provo, Utah, a father and mother with their two barely grown sons, had come joyfully to the city for a long-anticipated trip to attend the US Open tennis matches. While waiting on the subway platform for the train to Flushing Meadows, the family was assaulted by a band of four youths. The older of the two sons went to his mother’s rescue as she was being kicked in the face, and he was killed in the attempt. The judge, Edwin Torres, sentenced all four attackers to life without parole, the toughest sentence possible in New York at that time, and in doing so issued a striking statement expressing grave alarm for a society in which “a band of marauders can surround, pounce upon, and kill a boy in front of his parents [and then] stride up the block to Roseland and dance until 4 a.m. as if they had stepped on an insect. For a mother to hold a dying child in her arms, murdered before her very eyes, is a visitation that the devil himself would hesitate to conjure up. That cannot go unpunished.”

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Books, Christology, Religion & Culture, Soteriology, Theology, Theology: Scripture

Christianity Today’s 2017 Book of the Year-Fleming Rutledge's The Crucifixion


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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Books, Christology, Soteriology, Theology, Theology: Scripture

(Patheos) Jonathan Aigner–Is Contemporary Worship Starving the Church?

Bad worship leads to bad theology. Bad theology leads to an unhealthy church. It’s that simple. Here are seven ways in which contemporary worship is starving the church from the nourishment and sustenance it needs.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Parish Ministry, Theology

The Latest Edition of the Diocese of South Carolina Enewsletter

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Advent, Christmas, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Media, Ministry of the Laity, Ministry of the Ordained, Parish Ministry, Theology

Time Magazine's Picks for the 10 Best Movies of 2016

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, Movies & Television

Thursday Mental Health Break–A Baby Elephant sees the Ocean for the First Time

Posted in * General Interest, Animals, Photos/Photography

(CG) John Piper–Can Christians Benefit from Books by Nonbelievers?

[Jonathan] Edwards got that knowledge of evil from outside the Bible, and it informed biblical teaching about Satan’s horrible, fiendish, devastating, murderous rule over his people ”” all the while making them think they are having fun.

Now, in my case, I just finished listening to all three volumes of William Manchester’s biography of Winston Churchill, about 1,000 pages each. What an education in reality, insights into natural challenges of leadership, insights into the horrors of war, insights into the fickle nature of public approval, insights into sexual insanity of upper-class philandering, insights into the complexities of what justice looks like in public policy, insights into the value of never giving up, though there is enormous opposition, and on and on and on. What an education.

I was learning reality. I wasn’t learning my morality. Books didn’t teach morality. I wasn’t learning my morality. I get that from the Bible. I was gaining awareness of realities that come from life experience, except I don’t have any life experience of being in war. Things that are and what they are like, that is what I found. In other words, I was enlarging the raw material of reality which the Bible assumes and interprets for me when I bring it to my reading.

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Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, Books, Parish Ministry, Theology

(Y Press) Leeds Bellringers trn down Minster invite to ring at Christmas services

Bellringers at Leeds Minster have turned down an invitation to ring York Minster’s bells at its Christmas services, in an ”˜act of solidarity’ with York’s axed ringers.

Deputy ringing master Robert Childs said members discussed the invitation from York’s Dean and Chapter during a practice session, and 13 members voted no, with two abstaining.

He said Leeds’ ringers would normally have relished the opportunity to ring York’s bells, which were the finest in the country in terms of the sound.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Church of England (CoE), England / UK, Ethics / Moral Theology, Liturgy, Music, Worship, Parish Ministry, Pastoral Theology, Religion & Culture, Theology

A Prayer to Begin the Day from a New Prayer Book

O God, who didst send thy messengers and prophets to prepare the way of thy Son before him: Grant that our Lord when he cometh may find in us a dwelling prepared for himself; through the same Jesus Christ our Lord, who came to take our nature upon him that he might bring many sons unto glory, and now with thee and the Holy Spirit liveth and reigneth, ever one God, world without end.

–A New Prayer Book (London: Oxford University Press 1923)

Posted in * Christian Life / Church Life, Advent, Church Year / Liturgical Seasons, Spirituality/Prayer

From the Morning Bible Readings

In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judea, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah when he said, “The voice of one crying in the wilderness: Prepare the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.” Now John wore a garment of camel’s hair, and a leather girdle around his waist; and his food was locusts and wild honey. Then went out to him Jerusalem and all Judea and all the region about the Jordan, and they were baptized by him in the river Jordan, confessing their sins. But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sad’ducees coming for baptism, he said to them, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear fruit that befits repentance, and do not presume to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father’; for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. Even now the axe is laid to the root of the trees; every tree therefore that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. “I baptize you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry; he will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into the granary, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.”

–Matthew 3:1-12

Posted in Theology, Theology: Scripture

A Prayer to end the Day from a New Prayer Book

Be present, O merciful God, and protect us through the silent hours of this night, so that we who are wearied by the changes and chances of this fleeting world, may repose upon thy eternal changelessness; through Jesus Christ our Lord.

–A New Prayer Book (London: Oxford University Press 1923)

Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Christian Life / Church Life, Spirituality/Prayer

Abductors Demand N20m Ransom For Release Of Anglican Church’s Scribe’s Wife In Ondo

The gunmen, who abducted the wife of the General Secretary of the Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion, Venerable Ayodeji Fagbemi, Ebunoluwa had contacted the family, demanding for a sum of N20 million for her release.

The victim, Mrs.Fagbemi was kidnapped by unknown gunmen who invaded her house at Oba-Ile in Akure North local government Area of Ondo State on Monday night.

Leadership learnt that the abductors took the woman away to unknown destination after gaining entrance into her house through the window.

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Posted in * Anglican - Episcopal, * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, Africa, Anglican Provinces, Anthropology, Church of Nigeria, Eschatology, Law & Legal Issues, Marriage & Family, Nigeria, Police/Fire, Theology, Violence, Women

(NYT) Spared by Gunman in Charleston, SC, Churchgoer Describes Night of ”˜No Mercy’

Lawyers for Dylann S. Roof, accused in the killings of nine people at a South Carolina church, rested without presenting a witness on Wednesday. Earlier, federal prosecutors concluded their death penalty case against Mr. Roof by presenting Polly Sheppard, a trustee of Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church, who survived the June 2015 shooting there. She testified that Mr. Roof had asked her if he had shot her yet; when she said no, he told her he was “going to leave you to tell the story.”

She did, first in a panicked, terrified call to a 911 operator, and on Wednesday to a federal courtroom packed with the family members and friends of the fellow congregants who died.

Ms. Sheppard was the government’s final witness, and soon after, Mr. Roof’s lawyers rested in the case, which is being tried in Federal District Court here. Under questioning from Judge Richard M. Gergel, Mr. Roof, 22, said that he did not wish to testify in his own defense.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * South Carolina, Anthropology, Ethics / Moral Theology, Law & Legal Issues, Race/Race Relations, Religion & Culture, Theology, Urban/City Life and Issues, Violence, Women

(NPR) Billy Collins On How To Become A Poet, And Why Poetry Can Be A Game

For many NPR fans, Billy Collins needs no introduction. The former Poet Laureate is widely acknowledged as America’s most popular poet, regularly popping up on national best-seller lists (terra incognita for most poets, even beloved ones).

Public radio fans might know him best from his frequent appearances on A Prairie Home Companion … or may remember his lack of Phil Collins know-how, as displayed on Wait Wait, Don’t Tell Me.

So when Collins sat down with NPR for a reading on Facebook Live, we didn’t have to do much work to drum up an audience. The comments were quickly filled with his longtime fans.

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Posted in * Culture-Watch, * International News & Commentary, America/U.S.A., Language, Poetry & Literature