A new book from Solid Ground hoping to be published – but they need enough pre-pub sales to commit to it.
I’d love to get some recommendations on history books in general – which ones are the best in giving overviews of certain time periods (not just U.S.)?
A while ago I wrote a post called What Caused the Financial Meltdown? A Guide to Understanding the Collapse in 3 Hours, in which I wrote:
@1:19:45 black woman “I’m being held accountable for my bad choices. But who in that industry is being held accountable?… I’m stupid, but you’re guilty. You’re literally guilty.” Wow. And she’s not guilty for lying? It is this absolute lack of personal responsibility that creates this mess in the first place. People naively think we have reached a certain place in the progress of society where we should no longer have to actually worry about making catastrophic, bad decisions. There will always be a safety net, so I don’t have to worry. This is what “moral hazard” refers to. It is this idea that you are not really at risk for decisions that you make in life. There will always be a safety net to catch you or a safety regulation to keep you from making bad decisions. For example, see Schiff’s comments about FDIC @38:13.
A news report I read this morning reminded me of what I said above.
On Dec. 31, Australian tourist Erin Langworthy became one of thousands of people to try bungee-jumping off the bridge that connects Zimbabwe and Zambia, within sight of the tourist mecca Victoria Falls. It’s 364 meters of sheer gravitational pleasure, followed by a gut-wrenching jerk just feet above the rapids below. The only problem, for Ms. Langworthy, is that her bungee cord broke and she fell into the Zambezi, which, in its quieter areas, is infested with crocodiles.
The reporter went on to make a few comments about being safe in Africa:
One: Tourists who come from litigious societies such as the United States may have an assumption that an activity is safe, because it is allowed to exist. Such an attitude may be reasonable in the US or Australia, but it doesn’t necessarily work in a country such as Zambia, where civil court cases can take decades to resolve.
Living in a nanny-state takes it’s toll on a person’s common sense and personal responsibility. But how could we ever survive without a nanny-state to protect us?
Langworthy’s plunge reminded me of the anecdote of a friend in Johannesburg, who took his clients on a year-end corporate junket to Victoria Falls. The last event was to be a bungee jump off the Victoria Falls bridge. All but one of the clients took the plunge. The one who didn’t jump had asked the bungee operator what would happen if the bungee cord breaks. The tour operator grinned: “We’ll replace it.”
A little late, I suppose, but here are the most popular posts of 2011:
- 1 Reformed Baptist Covenant Theology and Biblical Theology (Sam & Micah Renihan) 2 comments November 2011 (Thanks to AOMin blog)
- 2 The False Gospel of Witness Lee and the Living Stream Ministries 55 comments September 2010 (Google searches)
- 3 Who is Matisyahu’s God? 92 comments August 2008 (Google searches)
- 4 Is the Abrahamic Covenant Conditional or Unconditional? 13 comments March 2010 (Google searches)
- 5 Pre-Publication: Covenant Theology, A Reformed Baptist Perspective 3 comments July 2011 (Google searches)
Interesting story from Jeremy Walker Situational ethics.
Friends have asked me on more than one occasion what I recommend reading on the Sabbath. I finally got the sense to make a post about it that I can point them to. Since iron sharpens iron, I’ve also included in the list responsible resources opposed to sabbatarianism. If you have any further recommendations, please let me know.
Why So Many People Think of the Sabbath as a Burden
The reason that so many people feel it as a burden is partly that we have so much leisure, we don’t feel the need for the sabbath rest; but more important, I think, is the fact that not many people really enjoy what God intended us to enjoy on the sabbath, namely, himself. Many professing Christians enjoy sports and television and secular books and magazines and recreation and hobbies and games far more than they enjoy direct interaction with God in his Word or in worship or in reading Christian books or in meditative strolls.
Therefore, inevitably people whose hearts are set more on the pleasures of the world than on the enjoyment of God will feel the sabbath command as a burden not a blessing. This is what John says in 1 John 5:3, “For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome.” The measure of your love for God is the measure of the joy you get in focusing on him on the day of rest. For most people the sabbath command is really a demand to repent. It invites us to enjoy what we don’t enjoy and therefore shows us the evil of hearts, and our need to repent and be changed.-John Piper Remember the Sabbath Day to Keep it Holy
Balance in Application
How is a happy medium in Sabbath observance to be obtained? What will preserve us from undue laxity on the one side, and unwarrantable severity on the other? Where shall we turn for that much-needed guidance which will deliver us from the grievous yoke of Pharisaical excess, and which will also prevent us from degenerating into the lawlessness of our Moderns? We have searched long and diligently for a satisfactory answer to this question, but (amid much that was helpful on other branches of our subject) have failed to meet with anything clear and definite. Personally our firm conviction is that we shall be kept from going wrong in this matter, if we, first, adhere strictly to the letter of the Fourth Commandment; and second, apply that commandment to the details of our lives in the spirit of the New Covenant.-A.W. Pink The Holy Sabbath
(13) Rather than dictating a detailed list of things forbidden on the Sabbath it is best if ministers and elders enunciate the principles involved and allow each individual or family to prayerfully and conscientiously determine how they will sanctify the Sabbath.
- 40 Questions About the Christian and the Law Thomas Schreiner
- From Sabbath to Lord’s Day: A Biblical, Historical and Theological Investigation ed. D.A. Carson
- A Treatise on the Sabbath John Owen
- See also this excellent summary of Owen
- Spurgeon on the Sabbath
- From the Finger of God: The Biblical and Theological Basis for the Threefold Division of the Law Philip Ross
- The Holy Sabbath (ebook) A. W. Pink (Also as PDF and to order free hard copy)
- The Lord’s Day Joseph A. Pipa
- Call the Sabbath a Delight Walter Chantry
- “Not Under the Law But Under Grace” Lee Irons (I do not agree with Irons’ rejection of the threefold division of the law, but I do agree with him that when Paul says “we are not under the law” he is referring to the law as a covenant of works)
- Entering God’s Rest by Faith: Realized Eschatology in Hebrews 3:7-4:11 Lee Irons (Irons’ treatment of this text is very similar to the treatment found in Carson’s volume, yet note that he does not therefore oppose Sabbatarianism. I lean towards this interpretation of Heb 4 over Gaffin’s.)
- The Sabbath as an Eschatological Sign of the Covenant Lee Irons (these three are all from the same author, so take note of how they work together)
- Some Ideas on How to Deepen Your Enjoyment of the Lord’s Day Jeffrey T. Riddle
- Tom Wells’ Book on the Sabbath: Foreward and Chapter 1 Review/critique by Richard Barcellos
- Tom Wells’ Book on the Sabbath: Chapter 2, part i
- Tom Wells’ Book on the Sabbath: Chapter 2, part ii
- Tom Wells’ Book on the Sabbath: Chapter 2, part iii
- Tom Wells’ Book on the Sabbath: Chapter 3, part i
- Tom Wells’ Book on the Sabbath: Chapter 3, part ii
- Response to Schreiner on the Sabbath critique by Barcellos of Schreiner’s book above
- Response to Schreiner on the Sabbath 2
- Response to Schreiner on the Sabbath 3
- Are We Required to Attend Church on Sunday? Michael Horton (“I have changed my own position in (The Law of Perfect Freedom), convinced now that the Lord’s Day is grounded in creation as well as redemption.”)
- Why On Sunday? O. Palmer Robertson
- Five Resources for Understanding the Lord’s Day as the Christian Sabbath
- The Christian Sabbath: Examined, Proved, Applied Brian Schwertly (I don’t agree with everything here, but there are some good things to be gleaned)
- Following My Re-Maker’s Example: Why I Sabbath on Sunday Bob Gonzales
- Is the Fourth Commandment Still Required for Christians? Nick Batzig/Francis Turretin
- Biblical Theology and the Transfer of the Sabbath, Part 1, Part 2, Part 3
- Finally, here is an interesting book. I don’t recommend it as an argument, but as a simple observation of the 4th commandment written on the hearts of all men. It’s written by a non-Christian after trying to explain to his daughter where we get weeks from. Read the first 10 pages: The Seven Day Circle: The History & Meaning of the Week
“Unlike the day and the year [and the month], the week is an artificial rhythm that was created by human beings [or their Creator] totally independently of any natural periodicity.” p. 4