Dr. Robert Smith Jr preaches at the Chapel service of Beeson Divinity School.
Month: May 2020
Saturday Spurgeon: Hasten Away to the Lord Jesus Christ
So then beloved, in all times of depression of spirit hasten away to the Lord Jesus Christ; whenever the cares of this life burden you, and your way seems hard for your weary feet, fly to your Lord. There may be, and there are, other sources of consolation, but they will not at all times serve your turn; but in Him there dwelleth such a fulness of comfort, that whether it be in summer or in winter the streams of comfort are always flowing. In your high estate or in your low estate, and from whatever quarter your trouble may arise, you can report at once to him and you shall find that he strengthens the hands that hang down and confirms the feeble knees.
“Christ the Overcomer of the World,” MTP 22:1327 (1876).
Reclaiming the Imago Dei: Reflections on the Atrocities Surrounding the Death of George Floyd
Watching the footage of the death of George Floyd at the hands (knee) of the police brings about two clear thoughts in my mind.
One is “Maranatha,” which is spoken by the Apostle John at the end of Revelation and means “Come, Lord Jesus!” The inherent evil on display in the world that shows itself in a myriad of ways makes me wish that Christ would come back and bring all perpetrators of evil and those who shake their fist at King Jesus to justice.
This is followed by the second clear thought: what must we as the Church of Jesus Christ do in the meantime? The Word of God is clear: we do not know the times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority (see Acts 1:7)–meaning, no one knows when Jesus is coming back to set up His literal kingdom on earth. The disciples, however, were promised power when the Holy Spirit would come upon them, and that we would be His witnesses from home to the corners of the globe (Acts 1:8).
Witnesses. The Church of Jesus Christ is called to be His witnesses, that is, to testify about the nature and work of the Kingdom of God (see Acts 1:3).
Christians have a responsibility in light of the events that happened in Florida, Minnesota, and anywhere else where the evil of racism rears its ugliest of heads.
The doctrine of the imago Dei is the cure for racism in the heart of the Christian, yes, and it is the call to fight these injustices. Imago Dei is Latin for “image of God,” as first stated in Genesis 1:26-27.
26 Then God said, “Let us make man[a] in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”
27 So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.
All human beings are imagebearers of God. Without this understanding of God’s design, we risk feeling superior to others based on financial status, political party, gender, or (in this case) race. Yet, God has not made such a distinction of inequality. All are imagebearers.
Sadly, I wonder if our adherence to Darwinism has taken over our thinking without our realization. In 1871, Charles Darwin (1809-1882) wrote The Descent of Man which sought to build on the principles of his Origin of Species that classified not only species in order of inferior to superior, but of races as well.
The Western nations of Europe . . . now so immeasurably surpass their former savage progenitors [that they] stand at the summit of civilization. . . . At some future period, not very distant as measured by centuries, the civilised races of man will almost certainly exterminate and replace throughout the world the savage races. At the same time the anthropomorphous apes, as Professor [Hermann] Schaaffhausen has remarked, will no doubt be exterminated. The break will then be rendered wider, for it will intervene between man in a more civilised state as we may hope, than the Caucasian and some ape as low as a baboon, instead of as at present between the negro or Australian and the gorilla.Darwin, The Descent of Man (New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1889),105.
Granted, some have discarded Darwin’s racial tones while keeping the rest of his theory of natural selection. Yet, Darwin’s views run counter to the Scripture’s view of the imago Dei. There are no racial steps to climb in the evolutionary ladder. There are no “civilized” races by nature that give one superiority over another. This is an atrocious mindset that should be outright rejected.
Christians must internalize the atrocities of what is happening in our country, without question! We must feel sadness, brokenhearted, and angry. Yet Christians, regardless of color or denomination, must step forward with this clear understanding of all humanity being imagebearers of God and say, “No more! Everyone has value! In the name of Christ, we will stand up and speak up!”
May God give us wisdom and make us aware of every avenue to combat these injustices. Christ has rescued us from our sin and brokenness and made us aware of God’s design. Let’s spread that message of Christ rescue in the midst of these atrocities.
Let the Church stand up!
Transparency: A Needed Attribute Among Church Leaders
Battle Hymn of the Republic (US Army Field Band)
The United States Army Field Band performs the famous Civil War-era piece, “The Battle Hymn of the Republic.” Lyrics: Julia Ward Howe Music: William Steffe Setting: Peter J. Wilhousky Arrangement: James Neilson Conductor: 1st Lt. Alexandra Borza
Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord;
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword;
His truth is marching on.
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
His truth is marching on.
I have seen Him in the watch-fires of a hundred circling camps;
They have builded Him an altar in the evening dews and damps;
I can read His righteous sentence by the dim and flaring lamps,
His day is marching on.
In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea,
With a glory in His bosom that transfigures you and me;
As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free!
While God is marching on.
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Sunday Sermon: How to Find Gold in God’s Word–Reading the Bible Supernaturally (John Piper)
Men Mining the Word: Understanding Our Roles as Husbands
As we grow in our walk with Christ, we see that He has an intentional design for our churches, homes, and culture. Here, Pastor Matt talks about Ephesians 5:21-33 as he shows from Scripture the role God intended for husbands and how to execute that role.
The Critical Need for Directional Leadership
Leaders of churches, teams, small groups, etc., need an upward, inward, outward, and forward direction in their leadership and discipleship.
Music Monday: Jubilee Stomp by Tuba Skinny
Recorded in New Orleans 04/10/2018
Shaye Cohn – Cornet
Erika Lewis – Drum/Vocals
Todd Burdick- Tuba/Sousaphone
Robin Rapuzzi – Washboard
Jason Lawrence – Guitar
Max Bien Kahn – Banjo
Greg Sherman – Guitar/Vocals
Barnabus Jones – Trombone
Ewan Bleach – Clarinet