Why the “Right Side of History” Argument Works, but Shouldn’t

why the right side of history argument is working

I have seen it and heard it more times than I care to consider. With the continuing push for homosexual rights, and now the growth of the movement for transgender rights, it is a phrase that has been uttered so much that it has become commonplace.

Especially in the movement for the legalization of homosexual “marriage” (here is why I put that in quotes), this phrase is trumpeted in media, both traditional and social. It is used in court orders and common conversation. It has, in many ways, become the calling card of the movement.

It is that gay marriage (and related issues) are for those on the “right side of history.”

Of course, sometimes you will hear the other side, that those who stand opposed are on the “wrong side of history.”

Some examples:

Former Vice-President Dick Cheyne’s daughter Mary said in late 2013 that her own sister, Liz, who opposes gay “marriage,” was on “the wrong side of history.”

Shepherd Smith of Fox News has said that the Republican Party, in standing against this issue, is on “the wrong side of history.”

Just last week, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker said that the fight against gay “marriage” was over, due to the Supreme Court of the United States not hearing cases on the issue. Still, he spoke for a ban, and his opponent, Mary Burke, said that he was on “the wrong side of history.”

To say I am tired of this argument would be a grand understatement. Now, to be clear, it has worked. Whether you are for, against, or don’t care about this issue, the “right side of history” argument has, without question, been effective.

Why? In a word, Fear.

If we can tell them that a person is born gay, despite scientific evidence that such is not true (does anyone in the media actually remember the Human Genome Project?), then the comparisons to the civil rights movement become easy. If you are born this way, then who are we to deny you basic rights? History moves toward freedom, so we certainly don’t want to be on the “wrong side” of that, do we?

If we show growing support for an issue, and that support crosses political party lines, then it is just obvious that it is inevitable. Do you want to be the “only one” who doesn’t see this movement in history and end up on the “wrong side?”

Ultimately, if we can get enough people to believe that tolerance means I cannot disagree with anyone about anything (except when they actually stand for something), then we raise a generation–and a society–of wimps. We don’t want to be wrong, and we are too weak to speak out, so we just go along for the tidal-wave-like change, even if we don’t really agree with it. After all, our little psyches might be hurt if we were on “the wrong side.”

Here is what is truly sad, though. It is that this “argument” for gay “marriage” (and related issues) is not really an argument at all. At least, it shouldn’t be.

The same people who are telling us that we are on the “wrong” side of history if we stand opposed to gay “marriage” and they are on the “right” side…

…are the same people who go to our high schools, colleges, universities, and other places touting relative, postmodern truth. In other words, the belief that there is no such thing as “right” and “wrong,” objectively speaking.

So, here you have “experts” (and Twitter trolls) coming out of the woodwork to tell us that we are on the “wrong side of history.” Yet, if you ask them if something is objectively “right” or “wrong,” they would have to answer “no one can know” to stay true to their worldview.

And these are the ones we are listening to?

Now, is it inevitable that gay “marriage” will be legal across our nation, and that in fairly short order? While I cannot know for certain, last week’s cowardly “pass” by the US Supreme Court certainly made it seem that way. Do opinion polls show that I’m probably going to be hated more for writing this post and continually putting “marriage” in quotation marks in reference to those who would want homosexual unions? No doubt that is true.

In other words, is the pro-gay “marriage” agenda winning the day in our culture? There is no way to miss that they are.

But all Christians need to remember: it is not about winning the day. It is not about winning an argument on one issue (though issues are important). The Christian religion has, certainly, never been about being on top of the polls or making sure the celebrity or political culture is at our beck and call.

It also is not about being on the “right side of history.”

Instead, it has always been about being in the right hand of Jesus in judgment.

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The Purpose of God’s Mercy

the purpose of gods mercy

Jonah did not want to go to Nineveh because the Assyrians were wicked. They persecuted the Israelites on a regular basis. They had a godless mindset that included a reputation for torturing the innocent, including children. Jonah was tired of seeing his people suffer. Even after being swallowed by the big fish and having a change of heart about obeying God’s command to preach, he was hoping Nineveh would be destroyed. When God responded mercifully to their repentance, Jonah was upset and said, “…Ah, Lord, was not this what I said when I was still in my country? Therefore I fled previously to Tarshish; for I know that You are a gracious and merciful God, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, One who relents from doing harm” (Jonah 4:2).

Jonah knew something that every person who learns about God eventually understands. It is in God’s loving nature to be merciful. And aren’t we thankful? When we stand before our Creator in judgment we will desire mercy and grace and not what we deserve. The thoughts of Lamentations 3:22-24 are so beautiful and encouraging to our sinful souls, “Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness. ‘The LORD is my portion,’ says my soul, ‘Therefore I hope in Him!’” Each day we live is another example of the patience and mercy of God. We account that His longsuffering is our salvation (2 Pet. 3:15).

But while we are in appreciation of the grace of God, let us not forget that mercy has been extended for a reason. It has been given to us because God loves us too much to leave us in a state of sin. He desires our holiness (1 Pet. 1:15-16). God’s Son visited earth to create abundant life (John 10:10). He commands all men everywhere to repent (Acts 17:30). He wants us not to be conformed to the world but rather transformed by the renewing of our minds (Rom. 12:1-2). Jesus, “gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works” (Titus 2:14).

God attached a purpose to His abundant mercy. Mercy was meant for more than just dealing with our sin problem. It has been given so we can have an opportunity, motivated by the power of perfect love, to be like Jesus. Saul of Tarsus remains the perfect example of the purpose of God’s mercy. He said so himself: “And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord who has enabled me, because He counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry, although I was formerly a blasphemer, a persecutor, and an insolent man; but I obtained mercy…And the grace of our Lord was exceedingly abundant, with faith and love which are in Christ Jesus…However, for this reason I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might show all longsuffering, as a pattern to those who are going to believe on Him for everlasting life” (1 Timothy 1:12-13a, 14, 16).

Paul realized that God had chosen to bless his life with grace in order to shape him into a vessel of honor and service to the church. He knew that if he, in spite of his terrible past, was chosen by God as qualified to save the lost, then any person could become a fruitful worker for Christ. How sad that Christians leave mercy and grace hanging with their dripping baptismal garments! How tragic that so many view mercy and grace as completely disassociated with the resulting works of faith! Grace came that we should no longer be enslaved by sin (Romans 6). Mercy came that we might be motivated to be merciful to others and choose a life a sacrifice for our Savior who sacrificed for us!

If you are a Christian, you ought to know better than anyone about the internal impacts of mercy and grace, “If indeed you have tasted that the Lord is gracious” (1 Peter 2:3). The results should be love for God and men, and forgiveness, and dedication, and joyful labor in the kingdom of God.

It will be sad indeed in judgment for the one who never chooses to respond to the grace of God in obedience to the gospel. But just as sad on that day will be the state of the Christian who was never so changed by God’s mercy so as to allow that same mercy through the power of a changed life to change the lives of others.

“…and God’s mercy has come to you so that they, too, will share in God’s mercy.” – Romans 11:31

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Is This Progress?

is this progress

The New York Gazette of June 3, 1752 contained the following information in an advertisement. The ad was for an educational institution. Here is the wording of that advertisement:

The chief thing aimed at in this college is to know God in Jesus Christ, and to love and serve Him in all sobriety, godliness and righteousness of life, with a perfect heart and a willing mind.

The institution placing that ad was then known as King’s College. We now know it as Columbia University.

When people of my generation (and generations younger than mine) think of Columbia University, one of the last things thought of is religion. Riots and protests of years ago come to mind. Things such as experimentation with drugs and “sexual freedom” also would join that list. Does it seem strange somehow that our institutions of higher learning used to uphold and defend the Bible?  Does that now seem “quaint” to you as most of these same institutions lead the fight against God and His Word?

Twenty-four years before we declared our freedom from England, educators were using whatever freedom they had to promote a belief in the Bible and the God of the Bible. Now, over two centuries later, educators (and others) are telling us that we should have freedom from religion, not freedom of religion.

Is this progress?

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Friday’s Family Friendly Finds {October 10, 2014 edition}

Today, we are excited to kick off our family links post with an announcement:

A Legacy of Faith is now on Instagram!

We only have a few pictures on there, and we are committed to not “flooding” your Instagram feed with what we had for lunch, but we hope to provide you with pictures, quotes, and thoughts that will encourage you. To follow us, you can follow this link or check out the feed on the right-hand side of the blog.

With that exciting news, let’s move on to this week’s family links.

Family Friendly Finds

This Week’s Finds

Be the FUN Family {for the family}

5 Ways that Men and Women Spend Their Money Differently {ChristianPF}

8 Roots of Domestic Violence {Life in the Kingdom}

Our Week in Review

The following were our five most-viewed posts over the past week. These were not necessarily published in the last 7 days; they just drew the most views. (Original publication date in parentheses.)

#5: 5 Mistakes Parents Keep Making (September 30, 2014)

#4: Parenting Through the Storms of Life (October 9, 2014)

#3: Abraham’s Day of Rejoicing (October 7, 2014)

#2: Political Correctness Gone to Seed (October 6, 2014)

#1: Adrian Peterson and Biblical Discipline (October 8, 2014)

Connect with A Legacy of Faith

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Can We Choose When We Die?

Brittany Maynard, age 29, has terminal brain cancer. She says she does not want to die. But she has chosen when. You can read and watch here: http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2014/10/08/terminally-ill-brittany-maynard-29-has-scheduled-her-death-for-nov-1/. This link will make you sad. You will empathize with this family. Cancer is a terrible disease. I was diagnosed 10 years ago. I have had many friends and family die from cancer. As a preacher I have been there until the last breath was taken numerous times. I have seen the worst it has to offer. But consider for a minute with me the moral issue at stake with euthanasia. Excuse me, in 2014 the political world prefers to call it, “Dying with dignity.”

I am not going to pretend to tell you that I think I have all of the answers to such a sensitive subject. One of my best friends and mentors in ministry took his life several years ago. He had suffered from bipolar disorder and chronic depression for years. He had been suicidal on occasions that caused periods of hospitalization. Suicide is not a black and white issue. There are people who take their lives who are so fragile mentally and emotionally that it would be difficult for any human being to say what was happening in the moment they chose to kill themselves.

For any person who is reading this article that has been affected by cancer, or some other terminal disease, or for any person out there who has had someone close to them choose to end their life, I want you to know that I love you. I could never understand how much you have suffered and how difficult it has been to go through such a terrible experience. Please understand that what you are about to read is being expressed for the purpose of pleasing God and promoting mental and physical and spiritual health for all people. Life is very precious. It is God’s greatest gift to man both now and eternally. This is why the issue of ending life is so important. Do we have the right to choose what day we die?

Arguments and discussions about specific situations can go on and on concerning this topic. Without a doubt, I would never think it was morally right to force someone to try to keep themselves alive by unnatural means. But I want to simply address the particular case at hand. Brittany Maynard has chosen doctor-assisted death for November 1, 2014. She moved to Oregon because it is one of 5 states that allow it. She has rejected other forms of medication and treatment. In the meantime she has been traveling and spending the last few months and weeks with the people she loves.

The scenario in which one chooses early termination of life has been thrust upon us recently through the tragic death of actor Robin Williams. So many things were written about that episode, that I chose to write absolutely nothing. In his case, nobody would say he died heroically. Rather, he was a victim of mental illness and he needed help. For many his iconic superstardom swept the morality of the issue aside while people celebrated his achievements. I enjoyed many of the things he brought to the entertainment world, but I also realize that putting people on a pedestal is dangerous and can be spiritually unhealthy. Our determination should be that of allegiance to the one Man who ever lived perfectly. Jesus Christ is not only Lord, but our only ideal example, role model, and hero.

There are several moral questions that trouble my mind in Maynard’s case. Is it ok to be euthanized while refusing forms of treatment, even if we have been told there is no cure? Is it ok to accept defeat and not battle for earthly life as much as is within us when we know this world is not our home anyway? Is it ok to refuse to suffer any pain that may come to us in life or death? Is there a difference between what Maynard is doing and people who choose not to be resuscitated, or cancer patients who accept a morphine-induced coma at the last stages of their illness? I believe so.

The difference is faith. Faith believes in unseen things (Heb. 11:1). Without faith, pleasing God is impossible (Heb. 11:6). What if even though no one has ever survived this disease, Brittany Maynard was the first? What if November 1 rolls around and on that particular day she is feeling healthy and strong? What if the experience of suffering caused her to rely on spiritual things over physical things, and helped her to change her mind about what she really wants to do? What if this suffering changed her future eternally? I have some current relationships with a few very close friends who I love dearly who are dying at this moment from terminal illnesses. They do not know how long they have. Some have days, maybe weeks to live. But they have not chosen the day of their death. Are they not also, “dying with dignity”? I would like to tell you that I believe beyond all others they are. You see, they believe in God, but they will not play God. They trust in God, and they know that we are not supposed to “die on our terms.” After all, are we even supposed to live on our terms (1 Cor. 6:19-20)?

I am afraid that we are living in a world that is progressively devaluing life. I have heard no mention of God in this case at hand. My heart goes out to this young lady and her family. On some level, but admittedly not completely, I understand their dilemma. I was 31 when I found out about my cancer. I had a wife and two small children. I did not know what was going to happen to me. But I chose life, not death. By the grace of God ten years later I am still here. But if I had not lived, I would not have chosen euthanasia. Because God is the giver of life, and God alone has power over death. And whether I live or die, I am the Lord’s. And I accept His will for my life, and also for my death, no matter the suffering.

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” – Romans 8:18

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.” – 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Finally, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all who have loved His appearing.” – 2 Timothy 4:7-8

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Parenting Through the Storms of Life

parenting through the storms of life

Earlier this week, we had a thunderstorm in the middle of the night. While it did not last very long, it was quite strong. In fact, at about 1:05 AM, I heard the loudest clap of thunder I believe I have ever heard. Immediately, both of our kids were awake, and I was checking on them.

The imagery of storms is often used to describe difficult times in life. We speak of the “storms of life” as a way to talk about times of loss, struggle, or depression. Just as children need us during literal storms, they need parents during those storms of life, too.

What can parents do to help their children through the storms of life? Think about how you handle weather storms. There are three things we must have.

1. Courage. It is not that we act as if the storms are not real; instead, we show that we can face them with strength. A child will get more scared if a parent acts as if he/she has never seen a storm before. Instead, with the help of God, we must courageously walk through this time.

2. Concern. A parent must avoid seeming truly afraid, but a healthy level of concern is necessary to lead. Preparations help greatly, but concern needs to be shown throughout the storm. During a terrible weather storm, a parent may watch the TV weather or check updates on the smartphone. During a storm of life, continually searching for information shows that the storm is real, but that the parent is staying on top of things.

3. Calm. This may seem like the same thing as courage, but it is a calmness that only comes from having peace in the Lord. We will be truly frightened at times in our life, but the one who is walking with the Lord has peace in the midst of the storm. A child can pick up on that, and will be more likely to ask about our faith when we are peaceful, when it seems the storms of life are raging.

During the storm recently, I lay in the bed with my daughter, trying to just be calm, so she would go back to sleep. At one point, though, I was glad she stayed awake. The reason was simple. She raised her head up, put her lips to my cheek and gave me a little kiss. Then, she said, “Thank you, daddy.”

It wasn’t that hard to earn that “thank you” during a thunderstorm, but a parent who has courage, concern, and calm will earn a much bigger “thank you” from a child when a true storm of life rages.

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Adrian Peterson and Biblical Discipline

[Note: During the month of October, our friends at The Light Network are releasing program to raise awareness about domestic violence. I was interviewed for an upcoming episode of the program “Culture Shock” on the issue of disciplining children. In connection with that, I submit the following article as part of their “blog hop,” helping to promote awareness. To learn more, visit this page on their website. –Adam]

adrian peterson and biblical discipline

I am a fan of sports. I have been geared up for the beginning of the new NFL season, and have enjoyed watching a few minutes of action so far this season. But the off the field news around the National Football League so far this year has been bad piled on top of bad.

In one of the more high-profile stories, Minnesota Vikings superstar running back Adrian Peterson was arrested in Texas. The charges stemmed from a “whooping” (his words) he gave his then-four year old son. The spanking with a switch left the boy with bruises, cuts, and other injuries, showing that this was more than a regular form of discipline.

My goal in this post is not to speak to the specifics of the Peterson case. Instead, it is to show how cases like these work against the Biblical concept of discipline.

The Bible makes it clear that parents are to discipline their children. That discipline needs to come in the form of both positive encouragement and reinforcement, as well as correcting mistakes. It is up to each household to decide what form(s) of punishment work best for each of their children.

Included in that discussion, however, should be some thoughts on spanking a child. The Bible certainly speaks to the issue:

“Whoever spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is diligent to discipline him” (Proverbs 13:24).

“Do not withhold discipline from a child; if you strike him with a rod, he will not die. If you strike him with the rod, you will save his soul from Sheol” (Proverbs 23:13-14).

When some read these passages, they get the idea that the Bible is pro-child abuse. There are two things we must keep in mind, however.

1. These are proverbs. While inspired, the type of literature itself helps us interpret these statements. Proverbs are statements of general truth. Used as a general guide to govern our life, they provide helpful wisdom for everyday decisions. They are not statements of command (unless they are backed up by other clear, Biblical teaching). Disciplining children is a Biblical command; the specific method(s) used to do so is not given with a “thus saith the Lord.”

2. Other Biblical standards. Spanking a child (or, to borrow from Solomon, using the rod) is allowed by Scripture, but the Bible also calls the people of God to be people who have self control. We are to be patient and kind. So spanking should never be the only punishment, and it should also only be administered under control. If anger is our primary driving force, we are not being led by the Spirit of God.

And then, you have Adrian Peterson.

Because he is a celebrity, and he clearly used spanking as a way to discipline, Peterson makes all spanking an easy target for those who want to label it as child abuse. What he did seems clearly to fall under that heading.

With patience and guidance, though, spanking does not have to be abusive. Parents need great wisdom to know when to use this type of punishment, but they also need great patience to be sure they are simply correcting, and not abusing.

What are some ways we can spank our children without being abusive? From one who is far from perfect, let me give you 5 suggestions.

1. Do Not *Only* Spank. In other words, spanking should be one of the forms of punishment parents use. If we spank for every little thing a child does, it will exasperate the child quickly.

2. Start early. A small spat on the hand of a toddler is difficult for a parent to do, but it will help quell the number of times a stronger spanking must be given later.

3. Know your limit. This is where we avoid Adrian Peterson-like endings to these episodes. You will be angry, of course, because your child has done something wrong and/or hurtful. Do not let anger be your only driving force, though. Know when to stop. A couple of swats is usually sufficient. (Oh, and spank on the behind. Do not slap your child’s face. That is nothing short of demeaning and degrading. I believe God put a little extra “padding” on our children’s behinds for a reason!)

4. Be consistent. No parent is going to be perfectly consistent, but do your best. If lying is considered a rule that is punishable via spanking, then spank each time a child tells an untruth.

5. Forgive quickly. With small children, just a few moments after the spanking, be ready to give hugs and words of encouragement that the child will grow from this and do better. Reinforce your unending love for that child immediately.

I know this is controversial territory, and stories like the one with Adrian Peterson only grow the controversy. But there is a Biblical way to administer a spanking without being abusive. May God grant every parent the wisdom and patience to know the best way to lovingly discipline each child He has placed in their care.

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Abraham’s Day of Rejoicing

abrahams day of rejoicing

John’s gospel was written “…that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name” (John 20:31). He begins by presenting Jesus as the eternal Word (John 1:1-14). In fact he writes, “In the beginning was the Word. And the Word was with God. And the Word was God” (John 1:1). In the Greek the verb “was” is in the imperfect tense, so that the first verse literally reads this way – “In the beginning the Word always was, and the Word always was with God. And the Word always was God.” John wants the reader to know that Jesus has always been and He has always been divine. He did not attain deity. In every way the Father and the Holy Spirit have always been God, so Jesus has always been God (Phil. 2:6; Col. 2:9).

Later on in the gospel, John includes some connecting information in a conversation between Jesus and the Jews. They were rejecting Him. They said Abraham was their father, and they refused to accept the identity of Jesus. Jesus responded that they really had Satan as a father, because they were untruthful and they were following the devil and doing his works (John 8:44). In reference to Abraham our Lord simply said, “Your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad” (John 8:56). They scornfully replied, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have You seen Abraham?” (John 8:57). “Jesus said to them, ‘Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM’” (John 8:58).

To what was Jesus referring? How did Abraham see the day of Jesus and rejoice? When did they meet? What happened? The Jews thought it laughable that Jesus could say He had been with Abraham. They thought it was so blasphemous they picked up stones to throw at Him. But a little examination of the Biblical record gives us the answer to the day Abraham saw “My day” and rejoiced.

Travel back to Genesis chapter 22. Abraham had been commanded by God to offer up Isaac, the promised seed. Isaac was the one through whom Christ was to come into the world. God demanded that Abraham prove his total allegiance through the sacrifice of his son. As Abraham drew back the knife to slay Isaac, God stopped him. Specifically the text says that the voice that called was, “…the angel of the Lord” (Genesis 22:11-12). In the Old Testament, angels are often referenced when God is showing His activity in the affairs of men. But only on a few occasions does the Bible say that it was not just an angel, but rather, “the angel of the Lord.” Why?

Another example of the angel of the Lord speaking to someone is found in Exodus 3:2. In the burning bush episode where Moses is called, it was “the angel of the Lord” who spoke. On this occasion when Moses had a conversation with God about his mission, at one point Moses asked God what he should say to this Israelites when he attempted to tell them he had been sent by God to lead them. The angel of the Lord replied, “I AM WHO I AM. Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, ‘I AM has sent me to you’ ” (Exodus 3:14). In John 8, Jesus in effect said exactly the same thing. The original language for Exodus 3:14 is identical to that of John 8:58 – when Jesus replied, “…before Abraham was, I AM.” When Jesus told the Jews He was the “I AM,” it was not the first time He had said this to someone.

If there was a specific day in Abraham’s life when he rejoiced to see the day of Jesus, it was when our Lord said, “Do not lay your hand on the lad!” (Gen. 22:12). In that moment God provided the sacrifice through a ram caught in a thicket. Years later God provided the sacrifice again, but this time a Lamb was caught in Jerusalem. This Lamb was the great “I AM.” He has always been. He is now. He always will be.

The Bible is full of exciting truths to be discovered about the great and glorious God of heaven! For those who believe, a time is coming again when they will rejoice to see His day – and they will see it, and be glad.

“Worthy is the Lamb who was slain to receive power and riches and wisdom, and strength and honor and glory and blessing!” – Revelation 5:12

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Political Correctness Gone to Seed

political correctness gone to seed

Recently, while preparing for a Bible class I’m teaching, I read the words below. While I might not agree with everything in this particular book, this rather lengthy paragraph may serve to illustrate how far some have moved in their concepts of such things as God, obedience, punishment, and a host of other things.

It is my opinion that those who may have moved in the direction suggested by the author have moved in the wrong direction. While Jonathan Edwards might be a little harsh (to say the least) for today’s tastes, his preaching and the preaching of others was a part of what history knows as “The Great Awakening.”

The other type of preaching alluded to in the paragraph below might be labeled as a great delusion. At least that’s my opinion.

I invite you to read the author’s words and see if you agree.

Jim Faughn

***

The story goes that in the 1960s a man decided to re-preach Jonathan Edwards’s famous sermon, “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God.” However, the preacher modified the sermon to better fit with the era. He entitled the sermon, “Seekers Who Lack Self-Esteem in the Hands of a Full-Esteem God.” In the original, Edwards preached to those who did not trust God: “You have offended him infinitely more than ever a stubborn rebel did his prince; and yet it is nothing but his hand that holds you from falling into the fire every moment.” Edwards described those who do not trust God as being like a spider hanging by a thread over a pit. Such preaching has always offended some and been misunderstood by others. It is said that the 1960s preacher decided that the spider analogy was too strong medicine for modern people and switched it to a butterfly: “Somewhere in the forest a butterfly was beautifying a rose by posing atop its petals. Her wings flapping to an unheard tune the trees seemed to be swaying to. A bee was humming to the melody of nature’s symphony as he dipped inside a wonderfully painted forest flower that seemed delighted to have such a distinguished visitor. Bluebirds were singing, crickets chirping and a possum was laughing in the gentle breeze. Heaven seemed to be saying, ‘You’re the most important creature in the woodlands . . . yes, you . . . and you . . . and you with the compound eyes.’”

————————-

Josh Moody. Journey to Joy: The Psalms of Ascent [Kindle version can be downloaded for just 99 cents here]

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Friday’s Family Friendly Finds {October 3, 2014 edition}

October is here, which means that we are now seeing the glorious changes in weather that remind us once again that God is still in control. Each time we see the seasons change and the beauty of creation around us, we should just stop to praise Him. Not everything is always good, but God is always in control, and that makes everything okay!

On to this week’s family links.

Family Friendly Finds

This Week’s Finds

Now What … Life After an Affair {Life in the Kingdom}

How Your Family Can Survive without Cable TV {Jackie Bledsoe}

If Your Kid Loves Temple Run, Angry Birds, or Cut the Rope… {Common Sense Media}

How American Parenting is Killing the American Marriage {Quartz}

Raising Daughters in a World that Devalues Them: 7 Things We Must Tell Them {We are THAT Family}

Our Week in Review

The following were our five most-viewed posts over the past week. These were not necessarily published in the last 7 days; they just drew the most views. (Original publication date in parentheses.)

#5: A Response to Victoria Osteen about Worship (September 2, 2014)

#4: 10 Simple Family Devotional Ideas You Can Do {Podcast} (October 2, 2014)

#3: One Step to Improve Your Marriage (October 1, 2014)

#2: Surprising News about Steve Jobs (and Other Tech People) (September 29, 2014)

#1: 5 Mistakes Parents Keep Making (September 30, 2014)

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