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A Shot of Encouragement

When Obergefell Falls

Part stone slung at Goliath, part song sung at Grendel’s mom, read the whole charge from Toby Sumpter that starts with this:

We are being taunted. The giant’s name is Obergefell; he is a six-fingered descendent of the Anakim. He has come out onto the battlefield arrayed in his impressive armor. He wears the media elites like a helmet of brass, and on his chest, he wears the deep pockets of multibillion dollar corporate CEOs. On his legs and shoulders he is clad with the brass of the apathetic masses. He is the hero of the Philistines, the champion of the so-called progressives. He beats his chest and defies the Christian Church, and the Philistine armies cheer and wave their flags and mock the God of Noah, the God of Israel, the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

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A Shot of Encouragement

Children of the Rainbow

Doug Wilson writing (again, for those who haven’t read him already) about why Christians kids need a Christian education before engaging the culture.

You can’t choose sides before you can see the sides.

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A Shot of Encouragement

A Visible Purpose

Abraham Kuyper stated that his aim was to equip a body

of spiritually mature, sober-living, serious people who, consciously assuming God’s promises and in the tradition of the historic Reformed church, sought to make visible in their personal lives and the life of the nation something of the kingdom of God.

–quoted in For the Healing of the Nations: Essays on Creation, Redemption, and Neo-Calvinism

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A Shot of Encouragement

One Thought

God’s entire counsel may be reduced to one thought, that in the end of the ages He may have a Church which shall understand His love and return it.

–Abrahm Kuyper, The Work of the Holy Spirit, quoted in, For the Healing of the Nations: Essays on Creation, Redemption, and Neo-Calvinism

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A Shot of Encouragement

There Is No Spoon

More from Saving Leonardo about the inevitable results of a man’s defective theology proper:

When artists were persuaded that nature operates by blind, undirected processes—-with no overarching purpose, order, or design—-then consciously or unconsciously they began to express that worldview by refusing to impose any order or design on their starting materials….If the universe does not have an author, if it was not created by a supreme artist, then what basis is there for humans to create works of art? (158)

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A Shot of Encouragement

The Day of Refreshing

The following encouragement came in a letter from Robert Cushman to the William Bradford recorded in Of Plymouth Plantation: 1620-1647 (page 108):

I pray you not be discouraged, but gather up yourself, to go through these difficulties cheerfully and with courage in that place wherein God hath set you, until the day of refreshing come.

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A Shot of Encouragement

What shall we call that?

“When shepherds have neglected the flock for so long, and the wolves are ravaging them, and the sheep come up with some kind of strategy to defend themselves, and the shepherds sit up on the ridge, laughing at the tactical inadequacy of what the sheep are attempting, what shall we call that?”

—Douglas Wilson, The Scars on Your Forearms
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A Shot of Encouragement

Burnout Preventative

Regarding John 15:16,

that the greater part of teachers either languish through indolence, or utterly give way through despair, arises from nothing else than that they are sluggish in the duty of prayer.

—John Calvin, Commentary on John, 122

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A Shot of Encouragement

Right Where He Wants Them

John Calvin remarks on the rage of the nations and the response of Yahweh in Psalm 2:4.

[W]hen God permits the reign of his Son to be troubled, he does not cease from interfering because he is employed elsewhere, or unable to afford assistance, or because he is neglectful of the honour of his Son; but he purposely delays the inflictions of his wrath to the proper time, namely, until he has exposed their infatuated rage to general derision.

Commentary on the Book of Psalms

In other words, God has presidents and prime ministers right where He wants them to show off their ridiculous foolishness.

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A Shot of Encouragement

Leaders from the Front

The image of the shepherd is an extremely important biblical picture of a “leader” (Num. 27:17) because it implies not only an intensely personal relationship between God’s people and their leaders but a style or model of leadership exemplified by Jesus (cf. Mark 6:34). The very word “leadership” is developed from the shepherd imagery, where the shepherd goes before the flock and encounters the problems of the flock first. The shepherd does not issue commands in a pyramid fashion down to subordinates who carry out his wishes like a general or admiral who stays back out of range of the conflict; nor is a shepherd a whip-carrying organizer who drives the sheep into the pen or to a particular pasture. But the shepherd knows the setting, leads the sheep, and they follow him (cf. John 10:4). Sometimes “leaders” today are like the strangers of this text, whose voices are unknown to the sheep, and they wonder why there are problems in their organizations (cf. 10:5)!

—Gerald Borchert, John 1–11, The New American Commentary, 332