This and That – 08-25-12

John Frame’s Advice: 30 Suggestions for Theological Students and Young Theologians – Young theologians often imagine themselves as the next Luther, just as little boys imagine themselves as the next Peyton Manning or Kevin Garnett. When they’re too old to play cowboys and Indians, they want to play Luther and the Pope. When the real Pope won’t play with them, they pick on somebody else and say, “You’re it.” Look: most likely God has not chosen you to be the leader of a new Reformation. If he has, don’t take the exalted title “Reformer” upon yourself. Let others decide if that is really what you are. – John Frame

You Need a Pastor and Church, Not Just a Podcast and Speakers – A podcast is not a pastor, and you “meeting with God” in solitude is not a church service. Those whose worship experience consists merely of such isolated engagement not only rob themselves of the grace of community, but they rob the local church of their participation and they rob God of the glory that He intends to display. – Geoff Ashley

A Statement on Civility: A Desperate Need for Cooperative Spirit, Collective Vision, and a Common Goal in Politics – 2. We misrepresent others’ views to make them look stupid or evil. Political campaign ads are full of misrepresentations. Voting records are twisted, legislation is misstated, and generalizations are made. Then the other side just ups the ante and the vicious cycle continues. This happens because, in many cases, it is easier (and often more beneficial politically) for us to point out the faults and gaffs in our opponents rather than make the case we have. – Ed Stetzer

Student-Loan Debt and the Future of Seminaries – But the ideal pattern is for churches to seek to identify, early in life, those who are gifted and called to ministry; the churches should then be held accountable for guiding these potential ministers in seeking strategic, sound and affordable training. What if local congregations didn’t merely rely on the availability of seminary graduates who decided to embark on a theological education after college, but actively kept an eye out for the stirring of the religious calling in young people all the way back to vacation Bible school? – Russell Moore

Ten Things About Church You Should Know (But No One Had the Guts to Tell You) – 3. A word to the selfless souls who input song lyrics for Sunday morning: “Oh” is not the same as “O.” The former is an exclamation, an emotional cry of anger, excitement, despair, or surprise. The latter is a vocative form of address usually followed by a name or title. If you lose your wallet and say “O God” you are probably praying to find it. If you say “Oh God” you are doing something else. – Kevin DeYoung

Illegitimate Responses to Illegitimate Rape Remarks – If one is willing to deny the humanity of children conceived through violence, one cannot consistently defend the humanity of children conceived through consensual sex. To deny the humanity of the one is to deny the humanity of the other. That is why pro-lifers support the right to life of all unborn children. It’s not how children are conceived that makes them image-bearers. It’s that they are conceived that makes them members of the human community whose lives deserve to be protected in law.  I am concerned that these pro-life principles not be cast aside in the rush to defend the Republican nominee for president. Those who do cast them aside are profoundly wrong and are giving up the grounds upon which to defend any unborn human life. Legitimate pro-lifers respond out of principle, not out of political expediency. – Denny Burk

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