Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Epiphany Prayer

Gracious Father,
Your Son is the desire of every nation. To Those who hunger for love, He is the Bridegroom rising like the morning sun;
To those who yearn for economic prosperity, He is the Creator who turns water to an overflow of finest wine;
To those in search of justice and righteousness, He is the King who brings the incomplete cleansing of the Law to its glorious fulfillment in grace;
To those who long for sacred purpose and devotion, He is the God Who calls many and when they have sacrificed all to come, He provides for them lavishly especially in the times when it appears that they have given up so much just to arrive at a dead 
For those who long for social equity, He is the Lord Who blesses rulers and masters by drawing their servants closest to Himself, so that they are the only ones given to 
see His miracle as it is performed.
O Christ, You are the joy of man’s desiring; the One for Whom our hearts always 
Even our sinful desires are just twisted impressions of the God-shaped void within us. And our hearts are always restless until they find their rest in You.
So shine the light of Your face upon us and bless us to draw us under the shadow of Your wing.
Set our feet to walk on Your path in Your steps, Lord Jesus, and fill us in our emptiness with your Holy Spirit. 

Friday, January 22, 2016

Visualizing the New Testament

Some helpful graphics when studying or memorizing from the New Testament as a whole.  The second breaks down each book by word count.  The third by verse.  The fourth by recitation or reading time [very approximate] from Andy Naselli's very fine DG article here.  The last a chapter/verse/word chart [for the Greek NT].  I especially like the third.  If you look at it sideways, each book appears like a mountain peak in comparison of height. Which will you attempt to scale next?

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Islam: Mirror of Christendom

An abridged essay by Dr Peter J Leithart; the full essay is available here.

For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror; for once he has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was.”
—The Epistle of James, 1:23-24

Deep in the pit of hell, the pilgrim Dante came across Mohammed, walking with his torso split open from chin to groin.  The surprise in this scene is not the gruesomeness of Mohammed’s punishment, but the place where this scene occurs: the ninth Bolgia of Malebolgia, in the subcircle of hell reserved for schismatics. Mohammed is not among the idolaters or the pagans, but among sinners being punished for breaking off from the Christian Church, all of whom, appropriately enough, have their bodies rent as retribution for rending the body of Christ.
In treating Mohammed as a Christian schismatic, Dante was not inventing a new perspective (he rarely did), but presenting views widespread in his time. Many in the Western medieval world believed that Mohammed himself had apostatized from Christianity.  Centuries before Dante, John of Damascus (675-749) treated Islam in the final section of his treatise de Haeresibus, calling it the “heresy of the Ishmaelites.”

Monday, January 11, 2016

Why and for Whom do we clap?

An incredible video snippet from David Gallo's TED talk "underwater astonishments", one of the top 10 most viewed TED talks of all time.

A simple question: Why did it end in spontaneous applause?  For Whom were these people clapping?  The octopus?  Gallo?  I think not.  Then for Whom? SomeOne else.

Romans 1.20.