Wednesday, July 30, 2014

All Around the Web - July 30, 2014

Reformed Baptist Fellowship - Does God love us just the way we are?

Books At a Glance:

Dr. Ware, you state in the preface that one of your reasons for writing this book is that evangelicals often have a better understanding of Christ’s deity than they do his humanity (13). What evidence do you see for this? And what are the dangers of an impoverished understanding of Christ’s genuine humanity?


Of the two opposite heresies, respectively, of denying the full deity of Christ (Arianism in one form or another), and denying the fully humanity of Christ (Apollonarianism in one form or another), the former has been the more persistent issue for faithful Christians to face. Because we have had regularly to support the deity of Christ afresh, I suspect that we have developed something of a collective evangelical mindset that when we think of Jesus, we think “God.” And of course, he was (and is) God! But the humanity of Christ has been minimized in this collective evangelical consciousness, such that we don’t typically appeal much to Christ’s humanity except when absolutely necessary (e.g., he bled and died). There is something about Jesus’ real humanity that just doesn’t seem right. Consider the line in “Away in the Manger,” that “no crying he made.” Really? What is it about a baby crying that would be offensive to our sensibilities when we think of the baby Jesus? And when we think of the miracles of Jesus, for many of us our minds immediately appeal to Christ’s deity as the source of supernatural power he used to accomplish these signs and wonders. But is this the best way to think? Why does Jesus declare in Matt 12:28 that he cast out demons “by the Spirit of God” if he did so out of the power of his own divine nature? More broadly, what is the point of Jesus having the Spirit upon him if he did what he did as God? So, our (correct) commitment to the deity of Christ has simply overshadowed the reality, significance, and breadth of Jesus living his life out of his humanity.

Joe Carter - 9 Things You Should Know About Male Body Image Issues
1. When it comes to weight concerns, a key difference between young men and young women is that females want to be thinner, while males tend to feel pressure to gain weight. “There are some males who do want to be thinner and are focused on thinness,” says Dr. Alison Field, an associate professor of pediatrics at Boston Children’s Hospital, “but many more are focused on wanting bigger or at least more toned and defined muscles. That’s a very different physique.”

2. One common body image problem for men is dissatisfaction with their muscularity (i.e., with having well-developed muscles). Research suggests that exposure to the media ideal of muscularity, and not muscularity per se, elicits body dissatisfaction in men with pre-existing muscularity concerns.

3. According to The Atlantic, even toys contribute to the distorted messages boys receive about the ideal male form. In the last decade or two, action figures have lost a tremendous proportion of fat and added a substantial proportion of muscle. “Only 1 or 2 percent of [males] actually have that body type,” says Dr. Raymond Lemberg, a clinical psychologist and expert on male eating disorders. “We’re presenting men in a way that is unnatural.”

The Blaze - Is the IRS Planning to Crack Down on Pastors and Churches?
The Internal Revenue Service has settled a lawsuit brought by a secular activist group, reportedly agreeing to adopt standards for determining and investigating whether churches and religious organizations have violated restrictions on political activity.

The precise terms of the settlement are still unclear, as is how the IRS will amend its policies to enforce tax law on churches in a way that is palatable to the Freedom From Religion Foundation, which has long decried “rogue political churches.”

The IRS and the Freedom From Religion Foundation filed a joint motion for dismissal July 17, though the court has not officially closed the case, according to Christianity Today.

That said, the atheist group has said that an unspecified settlement agreement is underway.

C. Michael Patton - 4 Gospels or 4 Forgeries
My name doesn’t carry much weight. I’m not that big of a deal in popularity or authority. There is no need for a press release when the words “by C. Michael Patton” appear on a post.

Because of my lackluster, I could have tried to manipulate things in order to ensure that you read this post. I could have said John Piper wrote it. After all, I do have control of the admin panel and could create Dr. Piper as an author. He’s so busy, he’d probably never know.

I might do that because my name doesn’t have as much weight as John Piper’s. I might have thrown out a broader net and said this post was by Billy Graham. Or I could have gone for a whole different audience, if I said it was by Pope Benedict XVI. In any case, were I to pull off such deception, my message would (in theory) be held in higher esteem. Now, I am a Christian. While sinning is something I (unfortunately) practice, I don’t think I could ever stoop to such a low place, even if it gave me more credibility (at least initially).

HT: 22 Words
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