f The Wittenberg Door: July 2012

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Commenting on Christendom, culture, history, and other oddities of life from an historic Protestant perspective.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Notable Quote: Francis Schaeffer

Francis Schaeffer (1912 – 1984) on covetousness . . .

We should love men enough not to envy, and this is not only envy for money, it is for everything. It can for instance be envy of his spiritual gifts. There is a simple test for this. Natural desires have become coveting against a fellow creature, one of our kind, a fellow man, when we have a mentality that would give us secret satisfaction at this misfortune. If a man has something, and he loses it, do we have an inward pleasure? A secret satisfaction at this loss? Do not speak too quickly and say it is never so, because you will make yourself a liar . . . it this mentality is upon me, in any way, then my natural desires have become coveting. I am inwardly coveting and I am not loving men as I should.

True Spirituality

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Thursday, July 26, 2012

Notable Quote: John Calvin

Assuredly there is but one way in which to achieve what is not merely difficult but utterly against human nature: to love those who hate us, to repay their evil deeds with benefits, to return blessings for reproaches. It is that we remember not to consider men's evil intention but to look upon the image of God in them, which cancels and effaces their transgressions, and with its beauty and dignity allures us to love and embrace them.

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Sunday, July 22, 2012

Notable Quote: R.C. Sproul

R.C. Sproul on prayer . . .

What is the goal of the Christian life? Godliness born of obedience to Christ. Obedience unlocks the riches of the Christian experience. Prayer is what prompts and nurtures, putting the heart into the proper “frame of mind” to desire obedience.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Notable Quote: William Hendriksen

William Hendriksen on the angels’ reaction to the birth of Christ . . .

The baby was born in a stable, not in a palace. It was laid in a feeding trough for animals, not in a pretty bassinet. All this spells poverty, deprivation . . . These angels, having been associated with Christ in heaven before his incarnation, knew something about his glory, riches, and majesty. They had also become aware of man’s fall. And they had been informed that God had provided a way of salvation for man. Gabriel’s announcement to Joseph—“You shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins” (Matt. 1:21)—clearly implies this.

Did they also know that this work of saving man, while at the same time fully maintaining God’s righteousness, meant that the Father would not spar his own Son: that the Son, thought he was rich, for his people’s sake would become poor, vicariously bearing the curse resting on those whom he came to save; and that the Holy Spirit would condescend to dwell in sinful hearts, applying to them the salvation merited by the Son. We can assume at least that the very birth of Christ in a condition of poverty and deprivation must have caused these angels to stand in awe of God’s indescribably marvelous love.

The Gospel of Luke


Thursday, July 12, 2012

Notable Quote: R.L. Dabney

R.L. Dabney (1820 – 1898) on sanctification . . .

Sanctification, in the gospel sense, means then, not only cleansing from guilt, though it presupposes this, nor only consecration, though it includes this, nor only reformation of morals and life, though it produces this; but, essentially, the moral purification of the soul . . . Sanctification only matures what regeneration began. The latter sprouted the seed of grace, the former continues its growth, until there appears first the blade, then the ear, then the full corn in the ear.

R.L. Dabney, Systematic Theology


Saturday, July 07, 2012

Notable Quote: Herman Bavinck

Herman Bavinck (1854 – 1921) on sin and the world:

For if the history of the world clearly teaches us anything, it is this: that God has a quarrel with His creature. There is disagreement, separation, conflict between God and His world. God does not agree with man, and man does not agree with God. Each goes his own way, and each has his own idea and will about things. The thoughts of God are not our thoughts, and His ways are not our ways (Is. 55:8). Therefore the history of the world is also a judgment of the world...

The testimony of history to the justice of God is confirmed by the fact that mankind has always looked for, and still looks for, a lost Paradise, for a lasting bliss, and for a redemption from all evil that oppresses it. There is in all men a need for, and seeking after, redemption.

No matter how much effort makes the life of a man a pleasanter and richer thing, there lives in mankind a sense that all such progress and civilization does not satisfy for the deepest human needs nor rescue them from their worst distress.

Our Reasonable Faith

HT: Alpha and Omega Ministries


Monday, July 02, 2012

Thought of the Day: Those Who Have Not Heard

If you died after not having chemotherapy, you died not because of the absence of chemo, but because of the cancer. Thus men suffer God’s wrath not because they didn’t hear the gospel, but because they’re sinners rebelling against a holy God—the gospel is the solution, not the problem.

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