“Non-Christian investigators of nature are as successful as they are because they work with stolen capital.” — Cornelius Van Til
“Television is an invention that permits you to be entertained in your own living room by people you wouldn’t have in your house.” — David Frost
“The very familiarity of blessings sometimes makes us insensible to their value."— J. C. Ryle
“Self-righteousness is being more aware of and irritated by the sins of others than you are conscious of and grieved by your own.” — Paul Tripp
“My dear friend, when grief presses you to the dust, worship there.” — C. H. Spurgeon
“I’m not lost.” — Frank Churchill
“The happiest people don’t have the best of everything, they simply make the best of everything they have.” — Unknown
“Heaven is eternity in the presence of God through a Mediator. Hell is eternity in the presence of God with no Mediator.” — Tony Reinke
“Drag and Drop for Windows users: DRAG your peecee off your desk, and DROP it in the trash.” — some forum member’s tagline
“A ship in the harbor is safe—but that is not what ships are built for.” — John Shedd
“TV. If kids are entertained by two letters, imagine the fun they’ll have with twenty-six. Open your child’s imagination. Open a book.” — Unknown
“Question everything but Scripture.” — Geoff Botkin
“People who have time on their hands will inevitably waste the time of people who have work to do.” — Thomas Sowell
“Good government generally begins in the family, and if the moral character of a people once degenerate, their political character must soon follow.” — Elias Boudinot
“Luther once said, ‘The devil hates goose quills,’ and, doubtless, he has good reason, for ready writers, by the Holy Spirit’s blessing, have done his kingdom much damage.” — C. H. Spurgeon
“Thanks, modest girls. Appreciated by a male whose time studying the ground is proportional to each degree of rising temperature.” — Unknown
“I will keep the ground that God has given me and perhaps in his grace, he will ignite me again. But ignite me or not, in his grace, in his power, I will hold the ground.” — John Knox
“We should never do what we cannot pray God to bless.” — James Smith
“When she married you, she gave you her life to spend. Are you spending your life wisely?” — Dan Horn
“You don’t have a soul. You are a Soul. You have a body.” — C. S. Lewis
“Paul’s life was a prophetic book for Jews to read and see how to be saved, so our lives should be an easy to read book for the lost on how they can easily be saved.” — Ken Ham
“People will not look forward to posterity who will not look backward to their ancestors.” — Edmund Burke
“The world is a book, and those who do not travel, read only a page.” — St. Augustine
“One proud, surly, lordly word, one needless contention, one covetous action, may cut the throat of many a sermon. Take heed to yourselves, lest your example contradict your doctrine.” — Richard Baxter
“People fall in private, long before they fall in public. The tree falls with a great crash, but the secret decay which accounts for it, is often not discovered until it is down on the ground.” — J. C. Ryle
“Some people get an education without going to college; the rest get it after they get out.” — Mark Twain
“I began my education at a very early age—in fact, right after I left college.” — Winston Churchill
"When a Christian shuns fellowship with other Christians, the devil smiles. When he stops studying the Bible, the devil laughs. When he stops praying, the devil shouts for joy." — Corrie ten Boom
“True education is not giving in the answer, it’s in showing them how to find it.” — Kelly Crawford
“Every post is honorable in which a man can serve his country.” — George Washington
“What is the best safeguard against false doctrine? The Bible regularly read, regularly prayed over, regularly studied.” — J. C. Ryle
“Music is a discipline, and a mistress of order and good manners, she makes the people milder and gentler, more moral and more reasonable.” — Martin Luther
“[T]he ministry of Satan is employed to instigate the reprobate, whenever the Lord, in the course of his providence, has any purpose to accomplish in them...” — John Calvin (Institutes 2.4.5)
“I find television very educational. Every time someone turns it on, I go in the other room and read a book.” — Groucho Marx
“If you don’t fear God, you’ll fear everything.” — Dan Horn
“A lot of men have a wishbone where they ought to have a backbone.” — Unknown
“I have so much to do that I shall spend the first three hours in prayer.” — Martin Luther
“The cold water of persecution is often thrown on the church’s face to fetch her to herself when she is in a swoon of indolence or pride.” — C. H. Spurgeon
“Dreams don’t work unless you do.” — John C. Maxwell
“The glory of great men should always be measured by the means they have used to acquire it.” — La Rochefoucauld
“All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." — Edmund Burke
“Man does not need to know exhaustively in order to know truly and certainly.” — Cornelius Van Til
“Even if you are on the right track, but just sit there, you will still get run over.” — Will Rogers
“Be as careful of the books you read as of the company you keep, for your habits and character will be as much influenced by the former as by the latter.” — Paxton Hood
“Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body.” — Sir Richard Steele
“The measure of a great teacher isn’t what he or she knows; it’s what the students know.” — John C. Maxwell
“I have enough money to last me the rest of my life, unless I buy something.” — Jackie Mason
“[N]ot one particle remains to man as a ground of boasting. The whole is of God.” — John Calvin (Institutes 2.3.6)
— March 26th, 2012 —
At church tonight a friend and I were discussing hymns. I was lamenting that in some churches we have such a limited number of hymns we draw from on a regular basis. We cycle through our six, seven, maybe eight most well-known hymns; and while they may indeed be solid, they’ve become somewhat polarized. We’ve worn them out. “Surely,” I posited to my friend, “out of the eighteen hundred years’-worth of hymns that have been written—surely there are maybe just a few more that are worth singing?”
The fact of the matter is that there are many, many, many rich, beautiful, excellent psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs that we (as a rule) just don’t sing. Why don’t we sing them? I’m not really sure. Perhaps it’s because some of those old hymns and psalms are just hard to sing (which they are, sometimes!); perhaps it’s just a widespread case of unfamiliarity—the old hymns have been forgotten. I know that of the older hymns I love and appreciate, I never loved or appreciated any one of them until I’d first been exposed to it, that’s for sure!
So. With that in mind: while I’m neither traveling any dark roads nor drinking any bitter cups right now, this hymn is still, to me, a beautiful statement of trust in the perfect sovereignty of the Lord; and often, when I feel the twinge of anxiety (and maybe more than just a twinge), the first few words of this hymn come to mind. It’s one of my favorites.
Whate’er my God ordains is right:
Holy his will abideth;
I will be still whate’er he doth;
And follow where he guideth:
He is my God: though dark my road,
He holds me that I shall not fall:
Wherefore to him I leave it all.
Whate’er my God ordains is right:
He never will deceive me;
He leads me by the proper path;
I know he will not leave me:
I take, content, what he hath sent;
His hand can turn my griefs away,
And patiently I wait his day.
Whate’er my God ordains is right:
Though now this cup, in drinking,
May bitter seem to my faint heart,
I take it, all unshrinking:
My God is true; each morn anew
Sweet comfort yet shall fill my heart,
And pain and sorrow shall depart.
Whate’er my God ordains is right:
Here shall my stand be taken;
Though sorrow, need, or death be mine,
Yet am I not forsaken;
My Father’s care is round me there;
He holds me that I shall not fall:
And so to him I leave it all.
Samuel Rodigast (German, 1675)
What’s one of your favorite hymns, and why?
— March 17th, 2012 —
When the morning falls on the farthest hill,
I will sing His name, I will praise Him still.
When dark trials come and my heart is filled
With the weight of doubt, I will praise Him still.
For the Lord our God, He is strong to save
From the arms of death, from the deepest grave.
And He gave us life in His perfect will,
And by His good grace, I will praise Him still.
This song, written by Fernando Ortega, is one of my very favorite modern hymns. Yes, it’s simple; yes it’s short. But then again, so were some of the psalms.
— March 9th, 2012 —
“Do you desire to glorify God through the way you farm? Are you tired of reading books on farming and food production that ignore God as Creator? Have you ever wondered what agriculture would look like if it was based on the Bible instead of on evolution, Mother Nature, or the latest manipulations of life by science?
In Born Again Dirt, Noah Sanders encourages Christian farmers to evaluate their farming methods in light of Scripture. This book looks at various Biblical principles related to agriculture and provides examples of practical application. Topics covered include:
-Designing farms as beautiful, fruitful homes.
-Honoring God’s design in farm production
-Growing crops that honor the Lord -Marketing as ministry
-The idolatry of modern agriculture -Advantages of the farming lifestyle
-Starting a farm and making a living.
Without claiming to have all the answers, Born Again Dirt seeks to inspire you to develop a vision for God-glorifying agriculture. This book is a must read for any Christian who is a full time farmer, backyard gardener, or for anyone who desires a more Biblical view of agriculture.” — from the back cover
This, in short, is an excellent book.
In these 190 pages, Noah explains how while we Christian farmers might indeed truly be born-again farmers, we often farm—even unknowingly—according to the world’s methods which are, ultimately, based on unbiblical and pagan concepts. He exhorts a return to Scripture for the true foundation of our farming and agricultural mentality. Nothing like this has been written before; it’s definitely a groundbreaking book (har, har).
Born-Again Dirt is also a fantastic example of someone taking Scripture and seeing what it says about a very specific area of life. We often talk about how Scripture is applicable to all of life, but I’m not sure we always treat it that way. Here, Noah goes through the Bible pulling various principles and patterns from its pages and casts a vision for what truly God-honoring agrarian endeavors should look like. I would like to see books like this written on music, on architecture, on painting, on business models—on every aspect of life!
All in all, I think this is the most important book on farming and agriculture (second to Scripture) that a Christian can have in his or her library. Even if you don’t have control over any land whatsoever, this is a must-read, simply as a great case-study of someone applying Scripture to a very specific topic. Click here to purchase it.
AGE RANGE: All ages.
— March 4th, 2012 —
In my review of It’s (Not That) Complicated a few weeks ago, I joked that I couldn’t post too much of the book or I might find myself in legal trouble somewhat quickly; therefore, I posted a few quotes and linked to a lengthy excerpt on the Botkins’ blog. Well, Anna Sofia and Elizabeth have posted another lengthy excerpt on their blog, free for all to view!
There are plenty of people who have technically kissed recreational dating goodbye, but are still looking for romantic flings outside of marriage. They want the fun of being in boyfriend-girlfriend relationships without purpose or commitment. Enter flirtship, the popular new alternative to dating and courtship. It’s like dating, only you don’t go out – you use email, chat, or phone, or just pair off whenever you’re in the same vicinity. Either way, you’re definitely – though not officially – well, apparently, anyway – boyfriend and girlfriend.
Click here to read the rest. You too, fellow guys.
— March 1st, 2012 —
All too often, we are like little children whose Father has placed a blindfold on our eyes, taken our hand, and commanded us to trust and follow after Him. We know not where we go; and though He leads us, and though we know He sees everything, we nevertheless often follow haltingly, fearing that we might run into an obstacle that will hurt us. We speculate on where our Father is leading us, and when things take an unexpected turn, we fear the worst. We tremble, we rework our speculations; we exert needless energies in anxiety and worry.
Whate’er my God ordains is right: His holy will abideth;
I will be still whate’er he doth, and follow where he guideth.
He is my God; though dark my road, He holds me that I shall not fall:
Wherefore to Him I leave it all.
Oh that we might trust our all-wise Father more. He has no blindfold over His all-seeing eyes; and not only can He see what we cannot, but also He’s not just meandering about, simply leading us randomly around obstacles: He has a definite plan—and in that we may rest.
“Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” (Proverbs 3:5–6)
“But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Matthew 6:33)
“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” (Romans 8:28)