Monthly Archives: October 2007

Haykin Lecture on John Newton

The Sovereign Grace Pastor’s Fellowship will be holding it’s November 19th meeting at Toronto Baptist Seminary with Guest Lecturer Dr. Michael A. G. Haykin (left in pic above).
“The Life of John Newton” Presented by Dr. Michael Haykin
November 19, 2007 – 10:00 AM
Toronto Baptist Seminary
130 Gerrard Street East,
Toronto, Ontario, M5A 3T4
(416) 925-3263
In the chapel of Jarvis St. Baptist Church (Limited free parking is available!). There will also be an excellent (both in content and price!) booksale upstairs at Jarvis – bring your wallets!
Register in advance by calling 416.925.3263
[HT: Kerux]

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To Baldly Go

Just when you thought you were cool; just when your ministry really hit it with the kids; just when your soul-patch and long-hair made you different than the stodgy old pastor up the road — Carl Trueman hits you with this. Read and beware! You just might realise that you’re not as cool as you thought and that you’re ministry isn’t as hip and that you’re just as irrelevant as you think the pastor up the road is.

Here’s the zinger:

Go around looking like a pony-tailed and soul-patched metrosexual if you
must, but bear in mind that you achieve the double whammy of making yourself a
laughing stock to your peers and an embarrassment to your children.

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Multroneous on the Island

My friend Colin posted some thoughts about an event we attended on Saturday at Grace Toronto church. It was an artful evening that we all really enjoyed. Check out Colin’s thoughts.

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Frank Furedi has an insightful piece on environmental theology called “In Search of Eco-Salvation” in a recent edition of Spike magazine. He observes that churches that have long abandoned the gospel now view salvation in environmental terms.

In August, Dom Anthony Sutch, a Benedictine monk, announced that he would hear
eco-confessions of sins against the environment at the Waveney Greenpeace
festival, in a confessional booth carefully constructed from recycled materials.

Furedi is right to say that this is a caricature in and of itself. He points to the erosion (pardon the pun?) of religious authority as the key reasono why people have turned from saving souls from hell to saving the earth from global warming.
[HT: Al Mohler]

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D A Carson – Spiritual Life Conference

Although the website is not yet updated, the Greater Toronto Spiritual Life Conference will be having Don Carson as their guest lecturer. It will be held at The People’s Church on January 27-28, 2008. I’m not sure the cost, as the flyer I saw didn’t record one (I’m hoping it’s free!). I don’t know what the topic is either. But if it’s Carson, it should be good!!!


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Anselm on the Atonement

There is a very good article on St. Anselm’s view of the atonement at the “Christ In All of Scripture/Theology of G.C. Berkouwer” blog. He evaluates the so-called “satisfaction theory” of the atonement of Anselm and offers some insightful criticisms. Although Anselm wrote in “commercial language” about the atonement, he has a personal view of God that seems to indicate that Anselm went further than merely a commercial atonement. The author (thus far, he seems anonymous) points to a disconnect in Anselm’s understanding in the person of Christ. He insisted that Christ was a man in life, but suffered as the God-man in death. Putting it this way, says the author, indicated a failure to exposit the unity of Christ’s person.


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50 Year Anniversary of Atlas Shrugged

As a libertarian I have been interested in the writings of Ayn Rand. I was surprised that today marked the fiftieth anniversary of her influential book Atlas Shrugged. It was a delight to read of John Piper’s thoughts on her work – I saw that he and I shared the same struggles and feelings. Though she was a champion of capitalism and individualism, she was an ardent atheist and hedonist. In some senses, her views tend towards bolstering the misconceptions many have about capitalism, as she was rigorously self-centred (note her views on abortion). I sometimes think that if someone like Rand became the leader of a country, the poor would have some problems. Granted, I don’t know enough about her thought to really back the statement up!

Yet, in a strange way, it is her atheism that I am intrigued by. She is a living example that a capitalist system that is based on the autonomous rationality of men and women provides no real incentive to do good. The poor would get left behind, not because of capitalism, but because the atheism behind it (in her case) provides no foundation for ethics. Capitalism, in my opinion, needs an objective authority (more than Smith’s ‘invisible hand’) that changes the naturally selfish inclinations of people. Of course, I argue that the only objective authority for this is Christ and his Word.
Anyways, after that ramble, don’t get dissuaded from reading Piper’s note. It’s very good. And while you’re at it, read this evaluation of Rand’s ethics also written by Piper some years ago.


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New Blog

Crawford Gribben, now professor at Trinity College, Dublin, has a new blog: I Will Build My Church…In Ireland. It’s dedicated to Irish Reformed Baptist issues. Please join Crawford and those labouring in Ireland in prayer for the gospel to go forth and bring about great personal and communal change in that beautiful country!


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Rothbard on Myths about Libertarianism

In keeping with my previous post, I thought this might be informative. Late Chicago economist Murrary Rothbard has a good article, called “Six Myths About Libertarianism” dispelling the misguided beliefs that some people have about libertarianism.

1) Libertarians believe that each individual is an isolated, hermetically sealed atom, acting in a vacuum without influencing each other.
2) Libertarians are libertines: they are hedonists who hanker after “alternative life-styles.”
3) Libertarians do not believe in moral principles; they limit themselves to cost-benefit analysis on the assumption that man is always rational.
4) Libertarianism is atheistic and materialist, and neglects the spiritual side of life.
5) Libertarians are utopians who believe that all people are good, and that therefore State control is not necessary.
6) Libertarians believe that every person knows his own interests best.
Click the link above to read Rothbard’s answers to these myths.

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Is Capitalism Immoral?

In 1957 William Henry Chamberlain penned a helpful piece for The Freeman called “The Morality of Capitalism.” Although it’s a bit dated, it is worth reading. Not much has changed in fifty-years.

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