Friday, March 21, 2008

Good Friday -- The Wonderful Cross

All over the world today, Christians will pause to ponder anew the wonder of our Lord Jesus Christ who shed His blodd for the sins of the world. John Piper says, "...God purposes for the word in the death of Jesus are unfathomable." So, we can probe the mystery, but not fathom it on this Good Friday 2008. We can ponder the words of Jesus, but only faintly grasp what they meant to Him in the hour of His suffering. We can visualize the scene but we struggle to search out its meaning. Thankfully, we don't have to understand all of it to believe and reap its rewards.

I hope you will not only watch the video of Michael W. Smith in concert singing “The Wonderful Cross” (below) and worship along with Michael and audience but remember what Good Friday is all about. Good Friday is sometimes called Long Friday because of all that Jesus suffered. The Germans refer to it as "Karfreitag," meaning "Friday of Lamentation." In Armenia it's called High Friday, and the Russians refer to it as Passion Friday. In China, it's known as the Day of Christ's Suffering.

In Bermuda, kites will be flown today, all of them using wooden frames in the shape of a cross. As the kites soar into the sky, they symbolize the crucified one who has now ascended into heaven. In England, hot cross buns will be served, and the BBC will introduce its morning newscast with a verse from Isaac Watts' hymn, "When I Survey The Wondrous Cross."

"Yet it was the will of the Lord to crush him; he has put him to grief; when his soul makes an offering for sin, he shall see his offspring; he shall prolong his days; for the will of the Lord shall prosper in his hand." Isaiah 53:10

"For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ, our Lord." Romans 6:23

Monday, March 17, 2008

Spitzer should have read the Gideon Bible in his hotel room!

Cal Thomas gets it right this time:

Had New York Governor Eliot Spitzer reached out for the Gideon Bible in his fancy Washington, D.C., hotel room instead of, allegedly, a high-priced prostitute, he might have been forewarned of the dangers in such liaisons.

Such as: “A prostitute is a deep pit; an adulterous woman is treacherous. She hides and waits like a robber, looking for another victim who will be unfaithful to his wife.” (Proverbs 23:27-28) And: “For the lips of an immoral woman drip honey, and her mouth is smoother than oil; but in the end she is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a two-edged sword. Her feet go down to death, her steps lay hold of hell.” (Proverbs 5:3-5)

But who speaks of such things today, a day in which, as C.S. Lewis wrote, “We laugh at honor and are shocked to find traitors in our midst.”

Today’s “morality” knows none of this. It is best summed up in what Spitzer’s brother, Daniel Spitzer, a neurosurgeon, told The Wall Street Journal: “If men never succumbed to the attractions of women, then the human species would have died out a long time ago.” Even the most ardent secularist would likely not defend prostitution as the best method of perpetuating the human race, when marriage and fidelity seem to have done a pretty fair job of achieving that objective over several millennia.

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