21.6.03

I spent last night working on things I have to do for Scripture Union conference next month. I have prepared almost all the talks - just have one to go and I have a lot of notes and ideas for that. I also prepared last night notes for delegates to use in their own Bible study if they have nothing of their own. We usually find two extremes in this. There are always a few who have some devotional time fairly settled in their schedules and who look forward to that time. The rest usually have no idea that some time for prayer and study would be a good thing. That makes it sound as if my own time is something religiously observed. It's not and I sometimes think that those who have "religiously" observed quiet times are often just that - "religious."

Back to my notes. Each day I have related to the theme of the talk for that day, but using different readings. Themes are in Christ before creation, the fall, in Christ through his Spirit, in Christ at his coming. A friend kindly made me a template so the page folds up like a birthday card. I've kept things very simple. Just a few verses, some comments and a question for a response . Then a suggestion for prayer for that day.

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My cable access has been up and down the last few days. Neither we nor Optus can trace why. Seems more stable now.

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Winter solstice today. Not that that means much in terms of the weather here. July is always colder than June, even if the days get longer. August is none too warm here either.

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18.6.03

What the World Thinks of America. This is the link to the Australian section of this worldwide programme on America. It's being done by our national broadcaster. Interesting concept.

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15.6.03

Did you know that cars are the subject of ancient prophecy? Find out at this site which shows a blatant disregard of one of the most basic rules of exegesis: scripture had meaning for the original hearers. See LAST DAYS AND THE RETURN OF CHRIST! THE SIGN OF THE MODERN MOTOR CAR (their capitals, not mine.)
An amazing prophecy of the modern motor car is to be found in the Old Testament prophecy of Nahum, Chapter 2, Verse 4: "The chariots (or conveyances) shall rage in the streets; they shall jostle one against another in the broad ways; they shall seem like torches, they shall run like the lightnings."

Perhaps the author of the Armed Conventicle, with a belief that the sun revolves around the earth, is an acquaintance of the author of this site. The exegesis is of a similar standard, although the sites are poles apart in their approach to theology

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Richard draws attention to an entry by Chris who queries the large number of blogs by young people around twenty who basically have little or no understanding or knowledge of any of the history of the Christian church. They sing "I" songs and have a literalist understanding of the Bible.

Unfortunately, it's not just the twenty-somethings who think like this, although very many of them do. We had Advent candles last year during the Advent season. A young girl with an Anglican background was responsible for this. This raised a few hackles. There were many who had no idea of the season or what it meant, which is really rather sad. Others felt threatened by the use of candles. Candles? In this church? What would this lead to? What path were we being taken down?

We miss so much if we disregard our past. We do not have to be immersed in it to the point of forgetting the present. How many of the old heresies , particularly about the person of Christ have raised their ugly heads in these times? Probably a lot more than many would realise. They have no understanding of the troubles the early church went through with these. Couched in modern terms, they are still around, but not too many recognise them. Early gnosticism is still very much alive and well and gaining ground. With an emphasis on special experiences and esoteric knowledge, it fits in quite well today with our emphasis on similar things.

A college lecturer who loved church history and could lecture well on it once remarked that few people had any idea of it. To most, it was like a long dark tunnel. There was a small skylight letting in some light from the Reformation. To any who were Pentecostal in belief, there was another tiny skylight at the beginning of the twentieth century with the Asuza Street revival. Then another pinprick which represented their own conversion. Unfortunately, this is only too true.

We miss so much disregarding the past. So much good teaching, so much to learn from and pay heed to. I really appreciate the hymns by Wesley which Richard posts regularly. I know many but not all of them. So much is packed into each line. Few modern writers can match Wesley's gift of blending passion and knowledge.

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