Traveling Thru Here

April 24, 2011

Easter Service @ Redeemer Presbyterian Church of New York

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — j.hansen @ 3:39 PM

Lord’s Day worship at Redeemer Presbyterian NYC this morning was the epitome of an evangelical Easter Service. The stage was flooded with lilies (Attendees could even take one home after service!), the liturgy was littered with special music (more than congregational singing!), NYC’s once-a-year attendees were given the opportunity to pay penance in a special Easter sacrificial offering to promote “social justice” causes (Please, come back again next year for our once-a-year special offering!), and personal testimonies (four!) were as ubiquitous as rattlers at a Church of God with Signs Following service.

April 22, 2011

Oh, that Popish Mass of Accursed Idolatry!

Filed under: Uncategorized — j.hansen @ 3:14 PM

Question 80. What difference is there between the Lord’s supper and the popish [A.K.A., Roman Catholic] mass?

Answer. The Lord’s supper testifies to us, that we have a full pardon of all sin by the only sacrifice of Jesus Christ, which he himself has once accomplished on the cross; and, that we by the Holy Ghost are ingrafted into Christ, who, according to his human nature is now not on earth, but in heaven, at the right hand of God his Father, and will there be worshipped by us: – but the mass teaches, that the living and dead have not the pardon of sins through the sufferings of Christ, unless Christ is also daily offered for them by the priests; and further, that Christ is bodily under the form of bread and wine, and therefore is to be worshipped in them; so that the mass, at bottom, is nothing else than a denial of the one sacrifice and sufferings of Jesus Christ, and an accursed idolatry.

April 19, 2011

Rev. Tim Keller: “This Easter Remember the Poor”

Filed under: Uncategorized — j.hansen @ 3:45 PM

I received the following message from my pastor today and thought I’d pass it along to you.

Dear Friends,

Eighteen years ago, Redeemer began an appeal known as the Easter Sacrificial Offering. This offering supports the work of Hope for New York, Redeemer’s mercy arm, a 501(c)(3) charitable non-profit organization that mobilizes volunteer and financial resources to the poor and marginalized in New York City.

Hope for New York currently partners with over 30 affiliate organizations that work with and care for the poor. Last year, thousands of volunteers gave over 35,000 volunteer hours – mostly from Redeemer – humbly serving their neighbors and witnessing the transforming work of its affiliates.

Personally, I am thankful for the work of HFNY. As you know, Redeemer’s vision is not to build a great church, but to build a great city. In Jeremiah, we are told to seek the shalom, or peace, of the city. This Hebrew word means total flourishing in every dimension-socially, economically, physically, and spiritually. Effectively, God is saying, “I want you to serve, pray and root for the shalom of the city.” HFNY helps volunteers and affiliate organizations do just that.

The current economic climate has caused a significant increase in the need for services amongst the poor. At this critical time, Hope for New York has invested more resources into organizations serving the poor in their communities especially in The Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Manhattan. Every gift received through the Easter Sacrificial Offering will directly support the programs of HFNY’s affiliate organizations. Last year, HFNY distributed over $1 million in grants – a 20% increase – towards programs that included medical care for the homeless, mentoring programs for at-risk youth and food for low-income New Yorkers.

As we approach the Easter season, I hope that you will be motivated to participate in this year’s sacrificial offering by the joy of what God has done for you. Having seen your need and your spiritual poverty, he emptied heaven of his greatest treasure, his son, Jesus, “who became poor so that we might be rich.” Please prayerfully consider joining me in supporting this year’s Easter Sacrificial Offering.

Warmly,

Tim Keller
Senior Pastor

April 13, 2011

What is it?: Defining Pietism.

Filed under: Uncategorized — j.hansen @ 11:40 PM

I was recently asked by Mr. O. (names have been changed to protect the innocent) to explain what pietism is. Here is my first bite at that apple.

Mr. O., I’m no theologian/pastor type, but I’ll give it a try. My understanding is that pietism is a theological view point that can be boiled down to making growth in good works the most important thing of the Christian life, rather than growth in right doctrine. It is a wrong emphasis on good works, not necessarily an outright denial of correct doctrine. Pietism is present where the emphasis on good works effectively (though not necessarily intentially) eclipses the importance of growth in right doctrine.

Yet, confessionalism and pietism are not binary categories — there is a continuum from pure pietism to pure confessionalism. I understand pietism is by contrast with confessionalism. This might be illustrated best in the context of, say, a church membership interview where an elder asks for “your testimony.”

The pietist elder wants to hear something about how God changed the person’s life, how he was moved “by the Spirit” at one summer camp and decided to respond to the alter call and how he really wanted to stop sinning after that. The confessionalist would be happy to simply hear “Jesus the Messiah came to save his people and died on the cross for our sins and rose from the dead on the third day.” For the confessionalist, knowing nothing more about the person, that profession would be sufficient grounds to regard the person as a Christian.

The pietist wants to know how often you look at porn on the internet, how often you read your Bible and pray, whether you remained pure until marriage, whether you drink often, etc. The pietist likes questions like WWJD? The confessionalist likes the question what did Jesus do?

Pietists consider “dead orthodoxy” a problem. Confessionalists consider “dead orthodoxy” a contradiction in terms. The confessionalist would not say that good works are not important, but rather the most important thing is what Christ did, not what you will do or are doing. Pietists appeal in their hearts to subjective experiences and their own good works as a way to comfort themselves (ourselves) since faith alone is so fantastically incredible.

Darryl G. Hart’s Response to Kevin DeYoung (of The Gospel Coalition) on Pietism & Confessionalism

Filed under: Uncategorized — j.hansen @ 4:42 PM

Here is Dr. Hart’s response to Rev. Kevin DeYoung first part.  Today, DeYoung followed up with his second part (written after Dr. Hart’s response).

April 12, 2011

In Like Flynn: For My First Time Ever.

Filed under: Uncategorized — j.hansen @ 11:52 PM

This was unexpectedly soon. I thought I had to join a small group first (seriously!). I’m very happy because now I am allowed to take the Lord’s Supper and am one baby-step closer to perfection.

Dear Joseph,

Congratulations! You have been approved by the Session for membership and are now officially a member of Redeemer.

Please schedule your baptism and/or vows online at your earliest convenience.

Thank you,
Redeemer Membership

 

Two Kingdom Tuesday: Does 2K Need the “Fear of the Lord” to be Potentially Non-Redemption?

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , — j.hansen @ 11:36 AM

In late March, an interesting discussion on 2K and natural law took place at Dr. Darryl G. Hart’s blog (here). In the comment thread (here) Dr. Hart had this to say:

Jeff, why do you think the fear of the Lord is different from the wisdom of ants. People who do not believe in Christ have the fear of the Lord. Fear of the lord is not necessarily redemptive.

Now I’m no minister of the Word, but Psalm 103 seems to speak as if the fear of the Lord is necessarily redemptive (or are there two kinds of fears of the Lord?).

11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth,

so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;

12 as far as the east is from the west,

so far does he remove our transgressions from us.

13 As a father shows compassion to his children,

so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him.

14 For he knows our frame;

he remembers that we are dust.

15 As for man, his days are like grass;

he flourishes like a flower of the field;

16 for the wind passes over it, and it is gone,

and its place knows it no more.

17 But the steadfast love of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear him,

and his righteousness to children’s children,

18 to those who keep his covenant

and remember to do his commandments.

What heavy lifting does this notion (i.e., “the fear of the Lord is potentially non-redemptive”) do for 2K natural law adherents and is there another way to skin that cat?

April 10, 2011

Catechesis Versus Cultus: Dr. R. Scott Clark on the Regulative Principal of Worship [Please, See Comments for Dr. Clark’s Explanation for How I Misunderstood Him]

Filed under: Uncategorized — j.hansen @ 6:58 PM

There is an interesting discussion taking place, regarding the Regulative Principal of Worship, between Dr. R. Scott Clark here and Rev. Lane Keister here.

In his most recent post, Clark makes a distinction between Christian instruction (catechesis) and praise/adoration (cultus). With this distinction I take it that Clark means to say that it is appropriate to impose congregational readings of paraphrases of Biblical truth (e.g., questions and answers from a catechism) in Lord’s Day worship when the main goal is didactic, but where the main goal is doxological, paraphrases of Biblical truth are forbidden. Imposition of paraphrases for teaching, and straight-up Bible-words only for doxology, stems from Clark’s understanding of the sufficiency of Scripture? If so, then is Clark saying that Scripture is sufficient to achieve doxological goals, but not to achieve didactic ones?

Then there is the trickier part of the liturgy: confession of sins. Is confession of sins more doxological or more didactic? Isn’t it on the basis of this the distinction that Clark determines whether to impose paraphrases or the ipsissima verba of Scripture alone? Even if we accept this distinction as the basis of the determination, aren’t some hymns more didactic than doxological?

April 5, 2011

Mark Driscoll to Speak at Doug Wilson’s Conference in Moscow, Idaho.

Filed under: Uncategorized — j.hansen @ 1:17 AM

Many Reformed folks disapproved of GC council member and pastor / doctor John Piper’s having Douglas Wilson speak at the Desiring God conference in the recent past.  This Fall, another GC council member and pastor  is slated to speak at a conference with Douglas Wilson; however, this time the conference is in Moscow, Idaho and sponsored by Douglas Wilson’s church.

March 8, 2011

Women Are So Rude

Filed under: Uncategorized — j.hansen @ 5:06 PM

How rude of women everywhere to plop their “international women’s day” (http://www.internationalwomensday.com/) smack-dab in the middle of “ground water awareness week” (http://southeastfarmpress.com/management/groundwater-awareness-week-set-march-6-12), “national consumer protection week” (http://www.gobankingrates.com/credit/national-consumer-protection-week-march-6-12/), “national problem gambling awareness week” (http://www.kake.com/news/headlines/March_6-12_Is_National_Problem_Gambling_Awareness_Week_117515878.html), “read an e-book week” (http://www.libraries.wright.edu/noshelfrequired/?p=2030), “teen tech week” (http://www.statelibrary.sc.gov/teen-tech-week-march-6-12-2011), and “ag safety awareness week” (http://www.fb.org/index.php?fuseaction=newsroom.focusfocus&year=2011&file=fo0228.html).  Shame on you, women.

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