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Kingdom Note: The End Was Near

Blog, The Kingdom Notes

It would be funny were it not so sad and destructive. Our modernist masters have been beating their epistemological chests praising their empirical wisdom as the sole arbiter of truth, while mocking the notion that the Bible can tell us truth. They delight to pull out every miracle that stretches our credulity, every law that goes against the modern zeitgeist all to show how hopelessly out of it the Bible actually is. Their Bible, scientific consensus, on the other hand is the true light of the world. It is not only a better arbiter of truth but comes equipped with a mindset that drives away prejudice. It’s effective, dispassionate, objective, everything our pathetic Bible is not.

Ask R.C.: What Do You Hope to Hear From Your Children When You Die?

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Before she went to her reward my beloved wrote letters to each of our children. It was her last days and stamina was hard to come by. Knowing she wanted to write one to me I tried to put her at ease – “You don’t have to write me a letter, dear. I have and always have had every confidence in your love for me.” She managed to write one anyway, noting therein how delighted she was to know that I never doubted her love. I’m not sure, however, that the last words of the departing are quite as important as the last words to the departing. When my time comes I would want my children to hear from me one last time what they hear from me each night before they go to bed – “Daddy loves you. Mommy loves you. Daddy and Mommy love each other. And Jesus…

Kingdom Note: How To Surrender The Culture War

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There is a great difference between being like a lamb before the slaughter and rolling over and showing your neck. Christians need to learn to tell the difference. We find ourselves dizzy with the swiftness by which we have lost our privilege in the culture and have become virtual pariahs. Our sitting president, while serving as president, took a position on gay “marriage” that now is not just considered unsophisticated but is on the fast track to being a hate crime.  Homo-rage is all the fashion; homo-fascism is all the rage. And Christians are increasingly being herded into a cultural ghetto.

Ask R.C.: How Did You Know You Wanted To Be a Writer?

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My ideological awakenings were not in the order most suspect. I was well taught the Reformed faith in my catechism class in junior high school, working through GI Williamson’s Shorter Catechism for Study Groups. Though I had, of course, come from a Reformed family, and been raised in the Reformed church, that was when it all clicked for me. But before Reformed theology became a passion I was introduced to free market economics. Just as Reformed theology asked us to embrace a few basic principles, and then to work out the implications of those principles with relentless passion, so with free market economics there was a certain elegance and internal coherence that just made me fall in love.

Kingdom Note: Growing Weary In Doing Good

Blog, The Kingdom Notes

Even as a young man Joshua intrigued me. First, I loved his passion and commitment, not just for himself, but for his family. He had a profoundly covenantal perspective on the kingdom, which is why my dear wife and I had Joshua 24:15 engraved on the inside of our wedding bands – “As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” What also caught my eye, however, was Joshua’s stamina. Genesis recounts for us some rather titanic shifts for humanity. Creation itself, moving from non-being to being is there. The fall, moving from perfection to depravity is there.  The deluge, moving from a world of peoples to just one family is there. At the same time, however, there is this change – the shift from life spans measured in the hundreds of years to life spans much more like ours. Moses, of course, had a rather productive old…

Kingdom Note: Comfort

Blog, The Kingdom Notes

I suspect that “comfort food” might better be called “nostalgia food.” There is, after all, nothing particularly comforting about macaroni and cheese, or meatloaf. The value in the food isn’t in the greatness of the taste, but the memories the taste brings back.  This, we think, mostly subconsciously, is what I used to eat, back in the day, when things were better. Which is why we have not just comfort food but comfort television, comfort music, even comfort memories. Almost anything we experienced when we are young, if it can be reasonably accurately recreated, can be a source of great comfort for us.

Kingdom Note: Selling Our Souls

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It is, according to CS Lewis, one of the most potent pulls into sin, the desire to belong. Were Maslow a bit more honest in ranking our “needs”, I suspect the approval of others would make the top five of his hierarchy. For teens we call it peer pressure. Sadly we tend to diminish its power to those clear crossroads moments, when the joint is passed around the circle or when some back seat Lothario is pushing a peer to fornicate. The temptation, however, is likely more powerful when the stakes seem lower, and our guard is down.  It is in the ordinary that we sell our souls.

Kingdom Note: Status Report

Blog, The Kingdom Notes

We are fools. That’s a good starting point.  We are all together made in the image of God. We are all together by nature children of wrath. We who have been born again have been remade into His children, by His grace. Yet, at every step along the way we face the compulsion of judging ourselves by ourselves. We want to know how we stack up against other image bearers, as if the petty things that distinguish us from each other could compare with the august majesty that we all have in common.  We want to insist that sin has wreaked less havoc in and through us than it has in others, which is rather like arguing that Hiroshima was damaged less than Nagasaki.  We want to insist that our sanctification is more potent than another’s, as if our actual holiness has a measurable significance in relation to our imputed…

Ask R.C.: How Are You Preparing Your Children For Persecution?

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How are you preparing your children for persecution? A few weeks ago I tweeted this: I don’t know the future but am preparing my children to 1 day face martyrdom, like my great-grandparents should’ve done for my grandparents. — R.C. Sproul Jr. (@rcsprouljr) March 13, 2015 Interestingly, I got little push back on the notion that my children might one day face martyrdom. Neither did anyone express any curiosity about what I meant about my great-grandparents and my grandparents. (I meant that every generation of believers, in every context, even those wherein the Christian faith is privileged in a specific culture, ought to prepare their children for martyrdom.) I did, however, have several people wonder just what that preparation looks like. Here’s how we look at it in my family.

Ask R.C.: What Would Future Me Warn Me About?

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If it were twenty five years from now, and you could come back to today to warn yourself, what would you say? It is, I confess, a rather convoluted question, but the principle isn’t so hard to grasp. We often try as a kind of thought experiment to ask what we would tell the us of twenty-five years ago if we can go back in time. If such is at all helpful, shouldn’t we be thinking of the other half of the equation now? What are five things me at 74 would say to me at 49 by way of warning? 1. Do not grow weary in doing good (Galatians 6:9). It is all to easy to allow long years of frustration to wear us down. When I sense I’m not making much progress in my own sanctification, weariness is at my doorstep. Our lives are marathons. And as we…