When asked to describe the church services at the new church which he and two other men just planted in Lenoir City, TN, my brother says he’s going to answer with one word: “Unremarkable.” Read this to find out why. It’s good stuff. Trust me.
Joshua Press has recently released David Herbert’s Charles Darwin’s Religious Views: From Creationist to Evolutionist. This book is a spiritual biography that focuses primarily on the religious experiences of Charles Darwin’s life. Its intent is to demonstrate how Darwin’s rejection of the Bible led him to adopt the naturalistic assumptions that were foundational to his belief in evolutionism. Well-researched and written in an engaging style, Dr. Herbert brings to life the spiritual journey of one of history’s most controversial figures.
Derek Thomas, Professor of Theology at Reformed Theological Seminary, Jackson, MS, commends the volume as follows:
A fascinating and important study of Charles Darwin, one of the most significant figures of our time. The book is a tour de force in its analysis of the creation-science debate, as well as an insightful account of the man himself. It includes a careful and cautious study of the so-called ‘Lady Hope Tract,’ suggesting a deathbed conversion. I highly recommend it, especially for those embarking on scientific study at any level.
Dr. Tom Nettles new biography on the founder of Southern Seminary, James P. Boyce, is now available for pre-order from P&R Publishing. The book is due for release in June, just in time for the sesquicentennial of SBTS celebration to be held in conjunction with the SBC annual meeting in Louisville. The book is titled James Petigru Boyce: A Southern Baptist Statesman and is part of P&R’s American Reformed Biographies series.
You can also pre-order the volume from Amazon.com for only $23.75 (a 34% savings).
HT: Sean Lucas
Theologian Steven R. Harmon, Associate Professor of Divinity at Samford University’s Beeson Divinity School in Birmingham, AL, has called U2′s new release No Line on the Horizon the band’s “most thoroughly Christian thing they’ve done yet.” Harmon writes in a music review on the Associated Baptist Press website:
Like the last two albums, No Line is much more overt in its Christian rendering of the world, what with lyrics like ‘Justified until we die/You and I will magnify/Oh, the Magnificent’ from the album’s second track. Yet what qualifies this album as thoroughly Christian is not so much its pervasive biblical/theological images as its overarching eschatological vision.
I confess that I’m no U2 expert, having only listened to two other albums (Joshua Tree and How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb), but I enjoy the challenge of listening to thought-provoking lyrics. I spend most of my time trying to exegete exactly what the band is trying to communicate. I’m not convinced this is necessarily a good thing, but I enjoy the challenge and the glimpses of gospel truth with which I am occassionally rewarded.
One of the curious things to me is how Bono and U2 can get by with singing such explicitly Christian lyrics. For example, recently the band appeared on the David Letterman show to promote their new album. They sang the song quoted above by Harmon, Magnificient, which is clearly a song of praise to God as Creator and Redeemer. Letterman and the crowd seemed ecstatic over the song (see video clip below). I enjoy the song, both the performance and the lyrics, but could it be that the music has overwhelmed the lyrics to the extent that the lyrics are missed by all except those who are looking for them? If so, what does this say about this type of music being used in worship in evangelical churches? Could it be that what we call worship often is only the same kind of emotional response to a musical performance (regardless of the content of the lyrics) that we see demonstrated at the Ed Sullivan Theater?
With those questions in my head, I still appreciate the common grace present in these musicians and their desire to use their gifts to exalt the Creator. He truly is Magnificient!
You can download the album in MP3 format from Amazon.com for only $8.99 here.
Dr. Michael Haykin was recently interviewed by the Christ the Center panel on the Reformed Forum podcast. The focus of the interview was upon the importance of reading and studying the early church fathers. You can access the episode in which Dr. Haykin was interviewed here.
In my research for Dr. Nettles’ Baptist History doctoral seminar, I was going through Baptist state newspapers when I found this article from the May 11, 1867 issue of The Baptist (Tennessee’s state paper). It was titled “The Way to Spoil Girls”:
If any parent wishes a recipt how to spoil daughters, it can be easily and readily given, can be proved by the experience of hundreds to be certain and efficacious:
1. Be always telling her, from earliest childhood, what a beautiful creature she is. It is a capital way of inflating the vanity of a little girl, to be constantly exclaiming, “How pretty!” Children understand such flattery, even when in the nurse’s arms, and the evil is done the character in its earliest formation.
2. Begin, as soon as she can toddle around, to rig her up in fashionable clothes and rich dresses. Put a hoop upon her at once, with all the artificial adornments of flounces and feathers, and flowers and curls: fondness for dress will thus become a prominent characteristic and will usurp the whole attention of the young immortal, and will be a long step towards spoiling her.
3. Let her visit so much that she finds no happiness at home, and therefore will not be apt to stay there and learn home duties. It is a capital thing for a spoiled daughter to seek all her happiness in visiting and change of place and associates. She will thus grow as useless as modern fashionable parents delight that their daughters should be.
4. Let her reading consist of novels of the nauseatingly sentimental kind. She will be spoiled sooner than if she perused history or science. Her heart will be occupied by fictitious scenes and feelings; her mind filled with unrealities, and her aims placed on fashion and dress, and romantic attachments.
5. Be careful that her education gives her a smattering of all the accomplishments, without the slightest knowledge of the things really useful in life. Your daughter won’t be spoiled so long as she has a real desire to be useful in the world, and aims at its accomplishment. If her mind and time are occupied in modern accomplishments, there will be no thought of the necessity and virtue of being of some real use to somebody pervading her heart, and she will soon be ready as a spoiled daughter.
6. As a consequence, keep her in profound ignorance of all the useful arts of housekeeping, impressing upon her mind that it is vulgar to anything for yourself, or to learn how anything is done in the house. A spoiled daughter never should be taught the mysteries of the kitchen—such things a lady always leaves to the servants. It would be “vulgar” for her to know how to dress trout or shad, to bake, to wash, to iron, to sweep, or wring the neck of a live chicken, pluck it and prepare it for breakfast, or to do anything that servants are hired to do. As a mistress of a house it is her duty to sit on a velvet sofa all day, in the midst of a pyramid of silks and flounces, reading the last flash novel, while her domestics are performing the labors of the house.
To complete the happiness of your spoiled daughter, marry her to a bearded youth with soft hands, who knows as little how to earn money as she does to save it. Her happiness will be finished for her lifetime.
Stop whatever you’re doing right now and listen to Dr. Gregory A. Wills’ Faculty Address which was delivered at Southern Seminary on Wednesday. The MP3 is now available online for download or for online listening. The title of the address was “Southern Seminary, Southern Baptists & the Two Religions”. I think it was a very fair assessment of Southern Seminary’s history in relation to both modernism and Christian orthodoxy. I gained a better understanding of the liberalism project at Southern Seminary past by listening to this lecture. While not sympathetic with theological liberalism, Dr. Wills has nevertheless sought to understand what his predecessors at Southern actually believed and what they were trying to accomplish. The result is a more accurate portrayal of their theological positions, without minimizing their significant deviations from orthodoxy.
Listening to this lecture will surely whet your appetite for Dr. Wills’ first coming history of Southern Seminary: Southern Baptist Theological Seminary: 1859-2009 which is due for release this Summer. It promises to be an excellent work, not only for the understanding of Southern Seminary, but also with insights to the history of the SBC and wider Evangelicalism.
The following has been released by the News department at Union University:
Carson to headline Union University Bible conference
The conference, sponsored by Union’s R.C. Ryan Center for Biblical Studies, will address the topic of how the New Testament uses the Old Testament.
“The conference will focus on interpreting and applying the Bible well,” said Ray Van Neste, director of the Ryan Center and associate professor of Christian studies. “It is ideal for training pastors, Sunday school teachers, Bible study leaders and anyone who wants to learn more from the Bible.”
Carson is research professor of New Testament at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School in Deerfield, Ill., and the author or editor of more than 50 books, including such titles as “The Gagging of God: Christianity Confronts Pluralism,” “How Long, O Lord? Reflections on Suffering and Evil,” “A Call to Spiritual Reformation” and “Christ and Culture Revisited.”
“It is a privilege for us to have Dr. Carson speaking at this event,” Van Neste said. “He is one of the most prominent evangelical Bible scholars of our day and in great demand as a speaker. Dr. Carson combines a deep knowledge of the Scriptures with a wonderful ability to communicate these truths in an understandable and engaging way.”
In addition to keynote addresses from Carson, the conference will feature breakout sessions led by Ray Clendenen of B&H Publishing Group, Greg Spears of Mid-South Baptist Association and members of Union’s Christian studies faculty.
David and Sally Michael, of Children Desiring God in Minneapolis, Minn., will also lead three separate breakout sessions on teaching the Bible to children.
Cost for the conference is $60, or $50 for groups of 10 or more or those who register before March 23. Registration deadline is April 6. Registration fee includes the entire conference, two meals and a continental breakfast.
To register, or for more information, visit www.uu.edu/events/WordWithinTheWord/ or call (731) 661-5579.
The Andrew Fuller Center publishes a semi-annual journal featuring articles and book reviews related to Baptist history and thought. Subscriptions to the journal are available yearly for $30 ($35 international). Payment can be made to “The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.” Please send subscription requests and payment to:
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For a limited time, all who subscribe, following the instructions above, and mention this offer in their correspondence will receive a free copy of Dr. Haykin’s A Cloud of Witnesses: Calvinistic Baptists in the 18th Century. This book is a collection of nine biographical sketches with a prologue by the late pastor David Fountain. It relates the story of ongoing faithfulness among eighteenth-century Christians namely Hercules Collins, William Mitchel, Anne Dutton, Abraham Booth, John Ryland Jr, John Thomas, Coxe Feary, Samuel Pearce and John Sutcliff. It also tells of the blessing that came to their communities later in that century. It is a story that will thrill, encourage and challenge the readers.
When we receive your payment and subscription information, we will send out a copy of the most recent issue of Eusebeia (volume 9 on Andrew Fuller) and your free copy of A Cloud of Witnesses. If you are already a subscriber, or already have issue 9, you can simply indicate which issue you would like for your subscription to begin. This way everyone can take advantage of this great offer.
Our next issue (volume 10) will feature articles on the Puritans and will be published in the near future.