December 14, 2017

Chapter Two: Prayer

Preachers occasionally comment that it is permissible for them to preach “down the road” – to talk about something they haven’t yet seen or exhort their congregation to levels they haven’t yet achieved.  When I write about prayer, I’m definitely writing about a “down-the-road” view, not a retrospective of all I’ve achieved myself.  That’s been […]

Chapter Two Continued: Work

(This is the third in a series of articles on the Christian life.  The other two can be found here and here.) There is an old and persistent heresy.  It involves separating the earthly from the godly, the material from the spiritual.  Gnostics, Cathars, and others have fallen into the error of equating material things […]

Chapter Two Continued: Humility and Obedience

I promised a follow-up of my article on “Chapter Two of the Christian Life.” In it I talked about the necessity, once grace has begun to work in us, of working ourselves. I listed nine disciplines or areas of growth that I wanted to talk about.  My purpose is not to load people up with […]

Chapter Two of the Christian Life

To start with, I want to endorse Jeff Dunn’s recent rant on iMonk.  He said this:  “Jesus is not a self-help guru. He is not interested in you becoming a better person. He could not care less with you improving in any area of your life. Because in the end that is your life. Yours. And […]

The Forgotten Deadly Sin

Many of you are probably familiar with C.S. Lewis’s Mere Christianity.  His chapter on “Sexual Morality” has some analogies in it that have struck me for some time.  With your indulgence, I will quote what Lewis has to say then go on to make my point. Lewis compares our sexual appetite with our appetite for […]

Difficult Scriptures: The God Who Smites

God loves us.  We learned that in Sunday School.  So how do we explain God smiting people? I’m thinking of four incidents, three in the Old Testament and one in the New.  In each case people were struck down, usually with death, once with leprosy.  The Bible is very clear that judgment was from God […]

The Touchstone

I have a question I’d like all you InternetMonks to tackle.  It’s this:  Is there any absolute standard of good and bad in the arts? By arts I mean music, writing, painting, sculpture, architecture, and dance at least, and I’m willing to include other disciplines if you like.  And by absolute standard I mean the […]

How The Whole Town Threw Us A Wedding

Editor’s Note: We typically run a classic post from Michael Spencer at this time on Saturday afternoon. But this essay from Damaris Zehner is just too good to postpone.  We will have a classic post from Michael again next Saturday. For now, enjoy one of the best feel-good stories I have read in a long […]

Salvation Stories

What is salvation like? Not, What is salvation?  What is it like? Comparisons, though incomplete, are good.  They enable us to comprehend things we’ve never seen or experienced; they enable us to generalize and categorize.  They underlie almost all human understanding of God, whom we can’t experience in the same way we do created things.  […]

A Jesus-Shaped Challenge

A passage from Michael Spencer’s Mere Churchianity: Finding Your Way Back to Jesus-Shaped Spirituality struck me as I was reading it recently.  I’m going to offer it to all you faithful denizens of the Internet Monastery to consider. Here’s a simple example.  Think about yourself if you had just spent three years with Jesus.  How […]