Below are some important blogs from around the web that I found helpful reading over the weekend…
In this post on the Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood’s website, Candice Watters writes of the importance and necessity of monitoring and guarding your children while they participate in online activities. She also gives some helpful and simple action steps to take which will help ensure a loving atmosphere that is less authoritarian and more caring and explanatory. I found this paragraph and these questions from Watters to be riveting and helpful for perspective, especially in the type of culture of parenting in which parents just want to give everything they can to their children so that their children will love them and be happy:
What if your son or daughter wanted to buy a venomous snake for a pet? What if they had birthday money to pay for it? What if they wanted to let it sleep with them at night? At what point would you say no? If your son or daughter has a straight-up, unaltered wi-fi enabled iPad, iPhone, or similar device, they have the equivalent of a snake. The factory settings won’t protect them from online danger. What should parents do?
Jim Hamilton, pastor at Kenwood Baptist Church in Louisville, KY, and professor at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, made a compelling argument as to why John 7:53-8:11 ought to not be included in our translations of the Bible. Owen Strachan makes the suggestion that this passage ought to be included in a footnote in which it is explained that some early manuscripts added it in.
This sermon and then this blog post by Dr. Strachan is a good reminder that the work of Biblical exploration and criticism is not done, but needs to be ongoing as we can be continuing to fine-tune our translations of the Bible to ensure Biblical accuracy.
Denny Burk, professor at Boyce College in Louisville, KY, wrote a summary article on World Vision’s decision to reverse their decision to accept and hire people in same-sex marriages in their organization. Dr. Burk says this about WV’s decision:
(World Vision’s statement) admits violating the authority of scripture and the Bible’s teaching on marriage. Signed by the President Richard Stearns, the letter expresses humble confession and repentance. It even asks for forgiveness from donors and other supporters. I was heartened and encouraged by what I read in the letter. I think this kind of public repentance is courageous, and I praise the Lord for it.
This is a great post about Church Membership and one that is full of wisdom as regards to how many believers and churches currently view Church Membership. I often see where ex-church goers still claim to have Jesus, and they usually say something along these lines, “I don’t need to the church to have Jesus.” This post is helpful for thinking these types of thoughts out. One especially helpful paragraph was in response to the idea that Church Membership is not biblical. The author, Ricky Jones, says this:
Every letter in the New Testament assumes Christians are members of local churches. The letters themselves are addressed to local churches. They teach us how to get along with other members, how to encourage the weak within the church, how to conduct ourselves at church, and what to do with unrepentant sinners in the church. They command us to submit to our elders, and encourage us to go to our elders to pray. All these things are impossible if you aren’t a member of a local church. (See 1 and 2 Corinthians, James, Ephesians, 1 and 2 Timothy, and 1 Peter for references.)
There is much to be aware of in our culture today – both the Christian culture and in the overall culture of our age. Reading good, clear articles is helpful and encouraging, while at the same time useful for people who may not have the time to sit down and read long books or who may even be discouraged by reading longer books. Reading blogs online can help cultivate a desire to “take every thought captive to obey Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5, also the reason for this blog-site)”. Also, reading blogs online can help cultivate a culture of reading for individuals, which can further help create greater desires to get into longer books and discourses. Grace and peace to you this week!