Sunday, July 30, 2006

Tagged, and books read


Manata tagged me. Here goes the books:

Q. One book that changed your life:

A. Bondage of the Will by Martin Luther

Q. One book that you've read more than once:

A. Calvin's Institutes

Q. One book you'd want on a desert island:

A. The script to the T.V. show Lost

Q. One book that made you laugh

A. Westminster's Confession by Gary North

Q. One book that made you cry:

A. Future Grace by John Piper (there was a section in there concerning Warfield's belief in providence in the face of his wife's affliction).

Q. One book that you wish had been written

A. A systematic critique of the Two-Kingdoms theory.

Q. One book you wish had never been written.

A. The Scofield Reference Bible.

Q. One book you're currently reading:

A. The Shadow of Christ in the Law of Moses by Poythress.

Q. One book you've been meaning to read:

A. Faith and Rationality by Plantiga and Wolterstorff

Now Tag three people:


Sunday, July 23, 2006

D'Aubigne on Oliver Cromwell

I was critical of D'Aubigne's approach to Cromwell when I first began the biography. I still think my criticisms of MD are justified. That being said, he is a darn good writer! Here are some wonderful snippets from his biography that are worthy of reflection (and imitation!).
Speaking of Cromwell's opposition to Turkish Islamism:

He sailed right into the harbor, adn though the shore was planted with heavy guns, he burnt nine of the Turkish vessels, and brought the tyrant to reason. But he did not confine himself to this mission: he spread the terror of the English name over all of Italy, even to Rome itself (211).

Cromwell himself reflects on his army,

I raised such men as had the fear of God before them, as made some conscience of what they did; and from that day forward, I must say to you, they were never beaten, and wherever they engaged the enemy, they beat continually (240-241).

D'Aubigne concludes:

Without Cromwell, humanly speaking, liberty would have been lost not only to England, but to Europe (278).

Cromwell had his faults, to be sure, and I will go into them in detail in my fuller review.

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Pastoral Applications of Localism

Pastoral Applications of Localism

A while back I did a post on another site arguing for localist politics. We should try to reform the local areas before we move to the big leagues. I will try to show that localist politics has pastoral applications. Simply, if you are unwilling to do for your home what you are willing to do for the national government (ie, make it Christian, save it, restore it, whatever), you are deceiving yourself. The kingdom of God moves inward out. (This is an interesting argument for postmillennialism. If the nature of the Kingdom has always been to permeate the earth, then it makes no sense that God would at the end of history destroy the space-time order to establish his rule when he has been laboring to that end for all of history).

Pastor Paul Jehle tells a funny story. He was speaking to a group of ladies (and a few men) who wanted to restore America, Christianize it, and so on. He began his speech with:

"Do you want to see America become Christian?"
Everybody cheered.
"Do you want to see the Law of God established in the land?"
Not as many cheers, but still supportive.
"Then where are your husbands? Where are your children?
"Dead silence"

Listen, if you aren't submitting to your husbands authority and discipling your children, then we are really deceived to think we can change this country. The rule of God begins in the heart and in the home, then it moves outward. The best thing you can do for your country is to go home, submit to your husbands, and spend time with your family."

Jehle is a fireball. He can get away with that.