Spurgeon relates a story that should give us pause for too quickly comforting ourselves with someones deathbed conversion. This isn’t to say they don’t happen, but…well, I leave the story to Spurgeon.
“I have heard of a city missionary who kept a record of 2000 persons who were supposed to be on their deathbed, but recovered and whom he should have put down as converted persons had they died; and how many do you think lived a Christian life afterwards out of the 2000? Not two. Positively he could only find one who was found to live afterwards in the fear of God. Is it not horrible that when men and women come to die, they should cry, ‘Comfort, comfort?’ And that hence their friends should conclude that they are children of God, while, after all, they have no right to consolation, but are intruders upon the enclosed grounds of the blessed God. O God, may these these people ever be kept from having comfort when they have no right to it! Have you the other blessings? Have you had the conviction of sin? Have you ever felt your guilt before God? Have your souls been humbled at Jesus’ feet? And have you been made to look to Calvary alone for your refuge? If not, you have no right to consolation. Do not take an atom of it. The Spirit is a convincer before he is a Comforter: and you must have the other operations of the Holy Spirit, before you can derive anything from this.”
Submission is one of those topics that’s become a taboo subject among believers, almost to the degree it is taboo, or even scandalous, among unbelievers. And rather than face the subject head on, we can be guilty to turning askew or walking away from it. At the Desiring God blog Kim Cash Tate has written one of the strongest and clearest articles about submission that I’ve seen in a long time. It’s titled, “We Need To Talk About Submission.” Kim outlines three points about why we should talk about submission without apology: 1. Submission points to the supremacy of Christ, 2. Submission esteems the truth, and 3. Submission affirms God’s created order.
As believers, we don’t want to resemble in the slightest way those who suppress the truth (Romans 1:18). To the contrary, our obligation is to uphold the truth of the word of God, no matter the times we live in, no matter how uncomfortable we may be. And granted, we will feel uncomfortable talking about submission in many circles. The discomfort is by design. The god of this world has waged assault on submission in order to suppress this truth.
Al Mohler reads a lot of books, and I am envious of his reading habits. So when he writes about reading I am all ears. In his article ‘Some Thoughts on Reading Books’ Mohler outlines some very helpful ideas about reading.
Maintain regular reading projects by reading in pre-selected categories.
Justin Taylor gave a remarkable interview with Vern Poythress for the TGC website. Poythress answers questions relating to the big picture of biblical theology and how Christ fits within the context of the Old Testament.
Since Christ is fully man, God as God had a relationship to Christ the man, and this relationship between God and the man was, in the general sense, “covenantal.” God on his part made commitments to Christ in his OT promises. Christ, in his earthly life, committed himself to following the Father’s way. This covenant between God and Christ was both “conditional”—involving the necessity of Christ’s obedience—and “unconditional”—guaranteed by God. So the words “conditional” and “unconditional” must be used with care. We have to ask ourselves not only which covenantal relation we are discussing, but what aspect of that relation.
But what do I love when I love my God? . . .
Not the sweet melody of harmony and song;
not the fragrance of flowers, perfumes, and spices;
not manna or honey;
not limbs such as the body delights to embrace.
It is not these that I love when I love my God.
And yet, when I love him, it is true that I love a light of a certain kind, a voice, a perfume, a food, an embrace;
but they are of the kind that I love in my inner self,
when my soul is bathed in light that is not bound by space;
when it listens to sound that never dies away;
when it breathes fragrance that is not borne away on the wind;
when it tastes food that is never consumed by the eating;
when it clings to an embrace from which it is not severed by fulfillment of desire.
This is what I love when I love my God.