A vehicle for venting on philosophy, religion, and the general state of things. Proprietor: C. W. Powell

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Add Virtue to Faith

Give all diligence to add virtue to knowledge 
[2 Peter 1:5]. This is not "adding" in an 
arithmetic sense, but in an organic sense.  
Virtue means "moral excellence" and is 
already present in faith, for it is through faith 
that all things are given to us in Christ. The 
tree is already in the acorn, but is "added" 

But morality is a demonstration of faith and 
authenticates it before the world. There can 
be no real moral excellence without faith, for 
whatsoever is not of faith is sin, but neither can 
faith exist alone as if life had no evidence. Virtue 
rests upon faith and authenticates it.

"Virtue" has the idea of being authentic, or genuine in a moral sense. 
 It means to be human in the sense of purpose. What were you and 
I created for? to wallow in uncleanness and filthiness? No, we were 
created as image bearers, male and female to bear the moral 
excellence [as creatures] of their Creator. 

The virtuous man is manly, for he was created to be strong as a 
prophet, priest and king under God.  The virtuous woman is womanly, 
feminine, for virtue is to be what you are created for.  It takes divine 
strength and faith to fulfill the purpose that God has for us, and it will 
not be achieved by diffident actions or lives lived in luxury and ease, 
indulging the appetites and lusts.

This moral excellence is expressed negatively in the "Thou shalt nots" 
of the Ten Commandments, so idolatry, blasphemy, desecration, 
rebellion, theft, murder, adultery, false witness must put away from the 
children of God. Expressed positively is means that we are to love 
the Lord with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength, and our neighbor 
as ourselves.

Because faith is from God and unto God, faith will always direct the 
soul unto virtue and a restoration of the image of God in man, putting 
off the old and putting on the new. Without virtue faith is dead, not real, 
not from God, for God is the true and Living God and does not make 

1Co 16:13 "Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, be manly, be strong."

Friday, November 23, 2012

Higgs Boson?

Cute, isn't it? Smart men decided they would get rid of sin and evil.
The old story about Adam and sin and the curse just didn't make sense
for the smart new world and man's evolving brain.

So man made up his own story to fit the brave new world. With a few
borrowings from ancient myths of Greeks and Romans and other smart
people who didn't know about sin, the story added some things about
lizards, finches, monkeys and bones. As man got smarter he talked
learnedly about genes and machines that smashed bits of stuff into
smaller bits of stuff, neither of which could be seen. You just had to
take other people's word for it.

After many brain seizures and learned stroking of beards, someone found
one of these bits named a Higgs Boson. They had been looking for it,
spent millions and millions of dollars for it was more important than health
insurance for the poor or tax relief for people who worked at real jobs,
had named it already, and gave it more respect in its micro-nanosecond
of life than an unwanted baby.

They fell down and worshiped, for now they knew that Adam hadn't existed
and therefore sin didn't exist, there was no real Bible, and people could
now safely ignore the Ten Commandments. So all the people working in
laboratory A continued to sleep with all the people working in laboratory
B, bouncing from partner to partner like molecules in solution, and rejoiced
that sin was no more. Higgs Boson had decided it.

But some of us infidels wondered: if Higgs Boson is the god particle, then
why hasn't it done something in the last trillion or so years about all the evil
in the world?

And why did Jack curse his wife this morning and smack his kid across
the room? And why did Bozo rape Jojo and dismember her body? Or is
there anything wrong with that?

Hungering and Thirsting

“Blessed are those that hunger and thirst after 
righteousness, for they shall be filled.” Matt. 5:6

I fancy that I have some of this grace, Dear Lord, but then I wonder
at times if I desire righteousness for your glory. Create in me, O Lord,
a clean heart, to hunger after You alone.

“Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires
of thine heart.” Psalm 37:4

Some desire righteousness for its own sake so it becomes an idol to
them and is ruinous to their souls. This is another way of thinking
that you can make yourself as God, to have your own light. There
is no light but Yours, Most High and Holy Trinity, and I would walk
only in You, for all else is darkness.

I confess, O Lord, that righteousness cannot exist alone, for it is the
light that comes from You. As the heat cannot exist without the flame
or the sound without its source, so no good exists that does not come
from You.

To hunger and thirst after righteousness is to hunger and thirst after
You, O God, for there is none other.

I believe that every good gift and every perfect gift is from above,
from You, the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither
shadow of turning. -- Jas 1:17

Dear Lord Jesus, no wonder You rebuked the Rich Young Ruler for
calling you “Good,” when he did not believe you to be God.

There is no teacher, however wise nor however truly sent from God,
who is good in himself, and it was right to rebuke this sinful man of his
idolatry and expose his covetousness. How good you truly are, dear
Lord Jesus.

How I long to live a complete and perfectly righteous life, but I cannot
attain it.

I love to study the Scriptures, and good books of theology for I find
them meat for my soul. I also find that I desire many other things, and
these are often in conflict with my holy desires.

I confess, O Lord my God, that when I do not walk in Your goodness,
the desires of the flesh gain strength and lead me astray, for in me, in my
flesh, dwells no good thing.

I confess that when you gave to me Your Spirit, it was only because the
Lord Jesus had purchased me from sin and evil by His precious blood,
and His death destroyed the guilt of my sin, my natural bent.

Your precious Spirit has given me a desire for righteousness that is greater
than the things of the world, but there are still things in me that pertain to
the old, my father Adam, so that both hungers are alive in me.

I confess the truth, dear Lord of Galatians 5:16, that my flesh hungers
against the Spirit and the Spirit hungers against the flesh. These contrary
desires cannot be reconciled, O Lord, so death works in me, for to do
your will, I must not give in to the desires of the flesh.

Thus Galatians 5:16 “This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not
fulfill the lust of the flesh. 17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and
the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other:
so that ye cannot do the things that ye would” is fulfilled in me.

“Greater is He that is in you than he that is in the world.” Your Spirit is
greater than the sons of Adam and therefore our faith will overcome
the world. I thank and praise you for that knowledge and joy.

I believe that I must trust Christ for my righteousness and be content in
that righteousness.

I am sure that it does not mean to “try very hard,” because the more
the flesh is exercised, the greater is the strength of sin.

The strength of sin is the law, and “trying very hard” makes me think
of the law and your perfect standard, and that is death to me. Your
strength is in the Cross of Christ, and I must glory there.  His
broken body and shed blood are my true meat and drink.

So I must rest in your perfect and complete righteousness and your
gift of eternal life, Dear Lord, for there is nothing left for me. Is this
what it means to “reckon yourself to be dead indeed unto sin.”

A dead man does not “try really hard.” He is what he is, dead.

So what is left is faith and hope and love. Oh, dear Lord, renew
those in me and let me know thy righteousness—that it be fulfilled
in me. That my light might shine to those around me.

So I must hide thy word, thy light, in my heart. I must receive Your
light as from You; The light of Your knowledge must give light to
my soul, kindling the light of faith, from which comes hope and love.

All light is from You, dear Lord, and turning aside from your word
and knowledge brings darkness into my soul, for I have no light of
my own.

“Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto
me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by thy name,
O LORD God of hosts.” –Jeremiah 15:16

“He that eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, dwelleth in me,
and I in him…It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profits nothing:
the words that I speak unto you, they are spirit, and they are life.”
 John 6:56, 63

You are my wisdom and righteousness and sanctification and
redemption, O Lord Jesus.

Amen and Amen.


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