Friday, April 30, 2004

Batman pic

yeah, yeah, yeah, I know most of you don't care about the new Batman Begins movie currently in production. Well, ya should. Anyhow, I'm very psyched abut this picture released today, as seen on SuperHeroHype.

For a larger image, click here. Call me fanboy....

Thursday, April 29, 2004

misc. updates

1. Jeter broke his record-setting slump with a lead-off home run!!! YAYY!

2. I got an e-mail of apology from my former employers (see "venting now" below). Half-hearted at best, it seems to me. Felt like it was written by a committee to be as bland as possible. Oh well, at least it was something (still working on that whole not-being-bitter thing, getting there...)

3. The littlest boy and I are bonding pretty well. Each day gets a little easier on both of us. He actually looks at me as if he likes me sometimes.

donkey convention

Saw this on an (usually liberal leaning) email list today:

Advanced Copy of this year's Democratic Convention Program
7:00pm - Tribute theme to France...
7:25pm - Tribute theme to Spain...
8:00pm - John Kerry presents one side of the issues
8:25pm - Ted Kennedy proposes a toast.
8:30pm - Terrorist appeasement workshop.
9:00pm - Gay marriage ceremony...
10:50pm - Pledge of allegiance to the UN...
11:15pm - Maximizing Welfare workshop.
11:20pm - John Kerry presents the other side of the issues

one person replied: "Okay, I know this isn't real because Ted Kennedy is only giving one toast."

Wednesday, April 28, 2004

yet another one hit out of the ballpark...

Sadly, I'm not talking about A-Rod or Jeter, but Michelle Malkin.

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

a phony controversy

Well, whaddya know, I actually agree with John Kerry. This whole "Medal Controversy"? As he said on GMA, "this is a phony controversy. "

It's stupid, stupid, stooooopid. Drop it, GOP. It's a non-issue. NOone is gonna base their vote on this thing.

Sure, it shows him to be a liar and a waffler--there are other ways to show this--ways that involve actual issues.


Okay, last week I made some comments about the never-ending debate my wife and I have over her hair cut (Apr. 20 "time will tell"). In said post, I linked to a photo of Carrie Anne-Moss from one of The Matrix films. Well, I apparently linked to a less-than-acceptable picture of Trinity. So I hereby apologize for the link. Although, I should add that she did think that another picture of Trinity would've been appropriate.

In the end she came home with something vaguely reminiscent of Lois & Clark-era Teri Hatcher.

Monday, April 26, 2004

venting now to avoid bitterness

we'll see if it works...

Okay, when I was getting ready to leave my last place of employment, I was approached about still being the e-mail troubleshooting/web page guy (note that it was their idea). I say sure, they ask me to come up with prices, etc. My first answer is that I'll work for scraps--I just want to be able to point to this site and say, "I've been doing that since 2000." I'm told to come up with some real numbers. So I go home and think--write up this whole agreement about rates, time frames, and so on. They look it over and agree to it.

So I leave, sit around for a couple of months waiting...they finish a couple of snazzy looking projects that I figure they would want to display prominently on their site. I send them an email about it. Well, the deal is, they're going to go with this consulting group that will redesign everything--marketing materials, website, etc. so they all look the same, etc. But once it's designed, the consultants will turn it back over to me. Am I interested? Heck, yeah, if nothing else, I'll learn something. (I don't see why they still wouldn't want to update the current site, but hey--I'm just the help)

More months go by....nothing. Then Friday, I get a call from their draftsman, asking for the account info and password so he can make some changes to the site. "Oh, so I guess I'm not doing the web page anymore." "Umm," nervous laugh, "I guess not."

It's just rude, y'know? Well, it's other things, too, but I'm not going to indulge myself and say what those other things are--so let's stick with rude.

oh, the humanity!

I'm a long-time Doonesbury fan. Read it all the time, I have several of the collections from the 70's, 80's and 90's--I even have the script to the Broadway Musical! Now, honestly, not just for political reasons--I think the last year or so, Trudeau's lost a little something I like to call humor--not all of it, he's just been off his game.

But at the end of the day, no matter what you think of his politics, or his humor--if you've read him for any length of time, you know he's done a great job at creating characters. This series over the last week or so with BD being injured in Iraq has really helped me remember that.

...losing a leg--I mean, for an ex-football star, now coach, that's bad. That's just really bad. But BD losing his helmet??? The audience seeing his hair? Why, why, why?!?!?! Whatever happened to common decency! There are certain things you just don't do: you don't have Archie actually pick Betty; you don't have Nero Wolfe give up beer; you don't have Robin Williams stick to a script; and for pity's sake, you don't let BD take off his helmet!!!

Sunday, April 25, 2004

Day 1 Approacheth

My wife (who, in case I hadn't mentioned it lastely, is really cool--a wonderful gift from God) goes back to work tomorrow. Which means it'll just be me and the Offspring for 8 hours.

I'm scared, really, really scared.

Theological editing...

It was a strange morning at church today. My tongue and my brain didn't do a wonderful job of synchronizing. Example, I announed, "The Pulpit Committee with be meeting after the morning service this evening."

Anyhow, we're singing "And Can it Be" before the reading of the Law...and it hits me that I haven't thought of anything to say before then. Out of the corner of my eye I see the notation "Alt. 1990" and presto I have my meditation on the Law. It went a little something like this:

Wesley has this nice blessing of having a team of editors looking over everything you say and write to edit it for posterity? "I think this is orthodox, but I'm not sure....I'll just whip it out and let the editors take care of it....." But we don't get that with our words. Moreso, we don't get it for our actions. Thankfully we have some really clear instructions...for example, Romans 12:9-21.

Saturday, April 24, 2004

of all the things to miss

I have a bunch of stuff I want to rant about--maybe will find the time tomorrow. But now, I'll just rave.

Beginning of the T-Ball game tonight, there's some sort of problem with the 2nd Baseman, so Number 1 Son is called in from Center to play 2nd. He then goes on to make all three outs in the first inning.. Two forced outs and one tag. He was reportedly very excited. And for good reason! The rest of the game was okay, he did standard work after that. Which is pretty good, not great, but pretty good. But . . .man. All three outs. So proud of him.

Why, oh why, did I get a night job? (oh yeah, money....)

Friday, April 23, 2004

BATMAN BEGINS not a "comic book movie"

Found this article via Super Hero Hype: Film Rotation | Quick BATMAN BEGINS snippet!. It describes Christian Bale's take on the movie, "We're making a film based on a much loved graphic novel. I think to use the term 'comic book' really under values the source material!"

Now,either he's just a really cool frood, or he's trying to garner support from the huge comic book geek audience that Marvel's earned and that the Schumacher Batman movies lost (very deservedly). Either way--I cannot wait for this film.

eschatological malaise

I could very easily be one of those eschatology-obsessed guys. You know the ones who carry around Bible's stuffed with charts and graphs, and no wayyyy too much about numbers and what they mean. But I won't let myself go off the deep end on it. So I limit myself to 2 books a year on the subject (well, I limit my reading to 2, I have been known to buy more than I will let myself read).

So, this week I'm looking for an "easy" theological book to read (i.e., nothing by a Puritan, nothing that will require a lot of dictionary-time, etc.), and I see William Cox's little tome, Amillennialism Today, with a-mill being fresh on my mind after a certain apologist came out of the closet on his position last week. So, tolle lege.

I'm about 2/3 done with it. All in all not a bad book, some iffy shots at postmills, some well deserved shots at premill dispies. But ugh, it has got to be the dullest book on eschatology I've ever read. Which isn't necessarily bad, I'm not suggesting that we base our eschatological position on which view is sexiest. But . . . .man! If you're trying to convince a hostile audience (as Cox clearly thought he was)....liven things up!

At this point, I will say that the part of me that cut my eschatology-teeth on Wilson/DeMar/VanDeventer/Gentry wants to suggest that there might be a correlation between Cox's position and his humdrum book. But, thankfully, I'm sanctified enough not to stoop to that level. :)

Thursday, April 22, 2004

blossoming writer

Number 1 Son today had a writing assignment to go with this spelling work--I know I should make him do more of them but, they are so insanely stupid! A week or so ago, he's supposed to "write a funny story about finding life on another planet" using three of his spelling words--the kid's in first grade and you ask for humor??!?! Ugh. Anyway, he did really well, IMHO, on today's story. It's at least as good as half the stuff I've thrown on here, so I thought I'd share. (this is a piece of fiction)

My pet frog's name was Frisky. We called him Frisky because he was playful. I taught him to jump a hoop for a trick.

Kidney Update

Had our second meeting with the kidney doc today--very positive. He liked the last test results and his weight gain (finally got that going well!). Right now his "main job is to gain weight" and our job is to sit back and watch it.

With reduced kidney function you usually have some problems with kids growing (paging Gary Coleman), but usually not in the first year of life. But after that he might get a growth hormone. We do have proof that he's not growing like his siblings--he's right on target for height, weight, etc. for his age--we've never heard that before :P (and to think I got scolded when I referred to him as the runt after he was born)

Other than making sure a few chemicals (some of which I can spell the names of) in the blood stay okay, there's really nothing more to do than to wait.

Based on how things are looking *at the moment* it's unlikely that we'll have to do dialysis before the transplant, Doc guesses that by the time he gets bad, he'll be big enough to do the operation. Right now, he could be ready by the time he's 2.5 yrs old, but the doc gave us the window today of 2-6 years old. Because we've been asked frequently, we asked the doc if it was likely that he'd continue improving enough that we wouldn't need the transplant. His answer: No. Umm, unh-unh. Yesterday he saw a couple of kids with dysplastic kidneys, one would probably not need anything, the other maybe would be okay. But Machen? "You don't like to say never, but--No." Which is what we had pretty much gathered already, but like I said, since it's come up....

The doctor summed things up by saying "I'm as pleased as punch with how things are going." Which is just a dorky phrase, but given what he was punch-pleased about, I'm not going to knock him :)

Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Limbaugh v. Taylor

Joel C. Rosenberg's Flash Traffic today pointed to an interesting sounding column by David Limbaugh. I should've kept working, but I went and checked it out.

Limbaugh is promoting a book by Norman Geisler and Frank Turek called I Don't Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist. He writes, "Geisler and Turek confront the conventional wisdom that Christians are an unthinking lot whose faith is devoid of intellect and that atheists need no faith to sustain their belief system."

Towards the end of his column he states:
But when you closely examine the evidence supporting many Christian claims, you'll find that they "are certain beyond reasonable doubt." As such, "it's not faith in Christianity that's difficult but faith in atheism or any other religion. That is, once one looks at the evidence, we think it takes more faith to be a non-Christian than it does to be a Christian."

It takes more faith to be a non-Christian? Yeah, okay, whatever. Please be sure to tell that to the brethren in the Sudan and North Korea. I'm sure they totally agree with that. Pfui.

Me, I'll stick with Steve Taylor: It's harder to believe than not to.

Misc notes

1. Ugh. I shoulda known--since Julie's the one who turned me on to the Big Picture, she'd have posted the comic strip on her blog today, too. Just call me a clone.

2. I need to run a retraction to my Carrie-Anne Moss comment from yesterday, hope to get some time to do that soon.

3. I have way too much to do today for this .....

New Blog

swing on by The Christian Eye--a new blog launched by chat-pal buzz. If for no other reason the quote by Mark Twain makes this a must look.

Story of my life

Well, since the Fox Trot's about to be archived and therefore restore the proper borders to my page, I thought I'd post this little look into my own soul, provided by The Big Picture

Speaking of the magic stuff . . . last night I'm at work, and am having a decent night. Then break time comes, I go down to the break room and the vending machine is out of all the good stuff (Mt. Dew, Dr. Pepper) and the tolerable stuff (Pepsi). All that's left is the eve-ill* Diet Vanilla Pepsi, Diet Pepsi, Diet Dr. Pepper, and Sprite. Sprite's out of the question--the caffeine level in my blood was dipping below 30%, and that's just not acceptable lately. I'm convinced that Vanilla doesn't belong in a soda--so I'm stuck with Diet Pepsi or Diet Dr. Pepper. So I ignore Spurgeon's dictum: The lesser of two evils is still evil. I go with the DP, 'cuz the advertisements (and my foggy recollection of experience) say it tastes more like regular Dr. Pepper.

To quote Wayne Campbell: Pssssshaw! Riiiight. As IF. Ew! Ew! Ew! Ew! Ew! That was just nasty. It resembled Dr. Pepper about as much as I resemble Chris Rock.

Why do I bother to go on and on about a lousy soda purchase? From time to time we all need to remember the lesson: Addiction can be a nasty, painful thing.

(not that I'm going to change my lifestyle or anything, just good to be self-aware)

*they're just nasty enough you have to pronounce it that way

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

time will tell

My wife and I have this ongoing debate about how long her hair should be. I'm thinking something along the lines of Charlotte Ross. She leans towards Carrie-Anne Moss in the Matrix

Well, she's off getting it cut now . . .probably more than the 3.5 nanometers I authorized. Still, wonder who wins this round?

hey, he was listening!

Was working with Number 2 Son today, doing our weekly review of his OT book memorization. "Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah...just like yesterday at church!"

One brief mention of the book Zechariah he remembered--repeated mentions of other things, forget it. But Zechariah stuck. It's a start.

Docs, docs, docs

Busy week for the lil' tyke. Nephrologist on Weds, Urologist on Thurs, Dietician on Friday--oh yeah and blood work today. Best results yet. . . still freaky high levels, tho.

Prayers would be appreciated

Monday, April 19, 2004

Covenant Kiddos

Prepping a bit for what might be my sermon next week. And in any case, scratching a mental itch I've had for awhile. In case you hadn't heard (and if you haven't . . . go back to the rock you've been under, you don't want to know), some quasi-Reformed folk have been stirring up a hornet's nest about the Covenant, the nature of it, and who is/isn't in it. Incidentally, I think too many of my Baptist friends lump the historic Presbyterian understanding of the Covenant and the place of children in with those who are promoting the "Federal Vision."

Now, there's been a lot written about the Covenant in response to the F.V.--which I really, really appreciate--but it's kind of draining to read everything about the Covenant and it's Sign & Seal (i.e., baptism) in light of the controversy.

So it was a real breath of fresh air tonight to read over Fisher's Catechism, Shaw's Commentary on the WCF, and some other things and find: 1. No reference to this present controversy. 2. Clear refutations of some of the errors of the controversy by orthodox paedobaptists.

For example:
Q. 36. Does baptism make or constitute persons church members?
A. No; they are supposed to be church-members before they are baptised, and if they are children of professing parents, they are born members of the visible church, 1 Cor. 7:14.

Q. 37. Why must they be church-members before they are baptised?
A. Because the seals of the covenant can never be applied to any, but such as are supposed to be in the covenant; nor can the privileges of the church be confirmed to any that are without the church.

Q. 38. Why then do our Confession, and Larger Catechism, say that "the parties baptised are solemnly admitted into the visible church?"
A. Because there is a vast difference between making a person a church-member, who was none before; and the solemnity of the admission of one, who is already a member. All that our Confession and Catechism affirm, is, that, by baptism, we are SOLEMNLY admitted into the visible church; that is, by baptism we are publicly declared to be church-members before, and thus have our membership solemnly sealed to us: "For by one Spirit we are all baptised into one body," 1 Cor. 12:13. (Fisher's Catechism What is baptism?)

Friday, April 16, 2004

Orthodox Anglicans spotted...

from Alpha & Omega, which got it from The Gobbler---the African Archbishops are gettin' the job done right.

Art Imitating Life

One of my favorite scenes, in one of my favorite books, High Fidelity didn't make it to the Big Screen--but most of it is found on the Deleted Scenes part of the DVD. What happens, for those of you who haven't read the book (a major mistake on your part, btw) is that the main character, Rob goes out to visit someone who's trying to sell some old 45s (that's a type of record, Mrs. Staples, think of it as a low-quality CD Single). Rob owns a record store, and has quite the collection of rarities himself.

So, anyway, Rob goes out and is stunned by some of the classics available . . .owning any one of these would make his year, y'know? And there a many available. Does he have enough money? So he asks how much she wants, she says something like $20. $20?? Are you kidding? He tells her how much she can get. She doesn't care, her husband split, told her to send half the money to him in Bermuda. So she's trying to make him suffer. Rob can't do it. He and the guy have the same passion--classic vinyl. He just can't. There's a couple 45's he just can't leave without, so he pays her way undervalue for those, but as much as she'll let him.

Why do I relate this? Well, yesterday I became Rob. My wife (I haven't mentioned this lately, but I have a really cool wife. A wonderful gift from God) went to a charity yard sale at work yesterday, and over hears someone talking about these Lord of the Rings action figures for sale dirt cheap. She goes over, looks through 'em finds three I don't have. They want $2 each (still in the box!). Which is impossibly cheap. She informs the yard sale people that they could get much more for these on e-Bay (or from me directly). Yeah, they've heard that, but so-and-so got divorced and her husband left these behind.

By the end of the day, here's the tally: Rob--the shallow, snobbish, self-loathing guy--comes off as a better person than me; the Nurse's Aid group gets $6; and I get Faramir, the WitchKing Ringwraith, and Merry in his armor. In the end, that's a profit, right?

Thursday, April 15, 2004

don't ya just hate when that happens?

I had a bunch of stuff I intended to blog yesterday, but got distracted when I got home...and now it's all gone.

Never put off 'til tomorrow....

Wednesday, April 14, 2004

Not used to this

Just watched tonight's Smallville. Very cool. Reeve gets to act a bit more than he did last time (and there'll surely be further appearances, too). I didn't notice that tweaked Superman theme music in the background this time, 'tho--but it wouldn't have been appropriate.

Maybe it's easier to see from the point of view of the audience, or maybe I'm just smarter than Clark, but I think it's pretty clear that the deal that Bo, er, I mean Jonathan, made with Jor-El isn't just about doing his bidding, there's some sort of "body sharing" going on there. A little less Jonathan every day, and a little more Jor-El.

But in the end, I was left feeling uncertain about what I'd actually just seen. I'm used to Smallville being tied up in night little bows at the end of the 60, or a clear ending in sight following a "To be continued..." Not tonight. I'm used to this feeling with Alias--heck, I expect it with Alias. But Smallville? Not expected. But very appreciated.

One other quick note, again, the best televised fictional exploration of the true nature/character of Fatherhood (and several bad ones)--on a show about Superman as a kid...whodathunkit?

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

paging Hal Lindsey

The Mark has arrived, in LA of all places :)

Someone posted a link to this picture in a chatroom earlier. How long 'til "non"fiction books and multi-million dollar making novels are using this as a plot device.

Monday, April 12, 2004

hey now, hey now don't dream it's over

Sixpence None the Richer, one of my favorite bands--for personal, artistic, spiritual, and uncategorized reasons--is calling it quits. See CCM and CNN for details (didn't go looking on CNN for the story, googled the band to see if I could get details, and they were one of the top results).

Their personal gain is music's loss.

George Will: Rice and Clarke

George Will is typically wise in his April 9 column: Rice and Clarke:
" Stripped of their score-settling over perceived professional slights, Clarke's conflicting versions of 10 years of counterterrorism policy, distilled to their essence, support the essential point of Rice's testimony. It is:

The processes of the federal government, and especially of the many agencies in its national security apparatus, had before 9/11 -- and Rice says they still have -- a thickness, a bureaucratic viscosity that are normal aspects of bureaucracies. But in these abnormal times this coagulating river of fudge unacceptably compromises national security.

So Rice's testimony was invaluable pedagogy for a public that thinks it knows what a blunt and cumbersome instrument government is, but that doesn't know the half of it. The commission's public hearings give viewers a glimpse of the texture of institutional life within which presidents struggle to process information and defeat institutional inertia. The hearings frame a -- arguably, the -- great question of this election year: Both presidential candidates want to keep America safe, but which one has the attributes -- the world view and sheer orneriness -- needed to stir the fudge and make it flow?"

Thursday, April 08, 2004

It's the most wonderful time of the year

Sing it with me!

Well, your ever-faithful Noise-maker is in a great mood. Saw the last 5 innings of the Yankees home opener. To the best of my knowledge, I'd never seen Javier Vazquez pitch before. I can't wait to watch it again. I was kinda hoping Joe would've left him in for the 9th, but totally understand why he didn't want to take a risk with the 2 run lead and the power that was coming up for the Sox. So instead, I got the pleasure of watching Mariano, which I would gladly spend the next 20 years doing. Eh, at least I know I get another 2 years of it.

But here's my beef: A-Rod.

Okay, not actually A-Rod himself. But the coverage of him. When we tuned into the game, the Yankees were in the field and the camera was on a tight close-up. It would then switch to Javier pitch, then back to A-Rod. That was all. ESPN's commentators didn't even talk about the pitches, just A-Rod, A-Rod, A-Rod, Bonds going for the record, A-Rod, A-Rod, A-Rod. Argh! And to the best of my knowledge he hadn't just made a great play--he didn't do anything significant for the part of the game I saw. Which is fine--he didn't need to.

I know he's probably the best player in the Majors. I know it's big news that he's in the Bronx. I've only been salivating over it since it was in the rumor-stage. But, PLEASE! The Yankees were a great team before him, they'd be a great team if the falls down the stairs tonight and can't play for the rest of the year. There are many, many other people you could talk about. Talk about Javier (which they finally did after the 7th), talk more about Jorge (nice homer, btw), talk about Wilson--few good plays today, better than the 3rd baseman, talk Jeter (remember him?) . . .

glad I could get that off of my chest. For now will stick with the big items: 3-1 today, 3-2 for the year, and Red Sox (2-1) on the 16th

One more reason to not live in a subdivision...

(like I needed another, but still)
Homeowners Association Threatens California Homeschoolers

Wednesday, April 07, 2004

Don't ya just hate it when the World gets it better than the Church?

Tuesday, April 06, 2004

Question of the Day

A member of my congregation asked me this (I don't know why they thought I'd know), I thought I'd throw the question out to all the smart, attractive, funny, and wise people who visit this blog.

Question: in the hymn "A Mighty Fortress...", the 3rd verse ends with, "one little word shall fell him". Then the next verse starts, "That Word above all earthly powers, no thanks to them, abideth,..." What is that little word?

My initial guess is: We're talking 2 different words, here. V. 3 is referring to 2 Thess 2:8. I *think* v.4's That Word is Scripture . .. maybe it's the Logos . . .

Anyone else have any ideas?


I haven't mentioned this lately, but I have a really cool wife. A wonderful gift from God.

Sunday, April 04, 2004

Veggie Rocks - Review

Okay, since the day I heard of this, I've been looking forward to getting this CD for myself, but after purchasing it last week my kids have become addicted to it. Which isn't too bad, since I actually enjoy the album. But I didn't expect them to get so into it.

My $.02 on the songs:
1. VeggieTales Theme Song, Rebecca St. James--eeenteresting. Now I haven't heard any of her stuff since her first album, Here I Am (as I recall). But I had heard that she'd left behind that light poppy sound . . .and she has. Not sure she should've, but that's another story. Good start to the album.

2. I Love My Lips, Stevenson--First Stevenson=Steven Curits Chapman + his son--get it? Not a bad little song . . . but it sounds like every SCC song recorded since Signs of Life album. When is SCC going to learn that you can really only get away with spelling a chorus once in a career? L-O-V-E-M-Y-L-I-P-S just didn't add a lot to the song. As a side note, my wife pointed out that's it's scary that SCC's son is now old enough to be recording music--we are getting old.

3. Promised Land, Sanctus Real--not a lot to say about this one. Good track, my kids like it more than me. Had never heard of the band before, not opposed to hearing more (which is Frontline's point in all of this, I guess)

4. In the Belly of the Whale, Newsboys--okay, not a cover of a VT song, but a fun one from Jonah. The line added by Larry is a classic . . .

5. The Water Buffalo Song, Superchic[k]--there's just something I love about Superchic[k]. Their sound, their vocals...absolutely love 'em, even those songs of theirs with the dumb lyrics . . . So I like this track, but felt it was a waste of a great band. I think the producers should've switched Stevenson and Superchic[k]. But something tells me what SCC wants, SCC gets.

6. I'm So Blue, Paul Colman--eh, not bad. Especially considering how annoyed Coleman usually makes me. Catcy version.

7. The Hairbrush Song (live), Audio Adrenaline--very nice. Not much more needs to be said.

8. The Pirates Who Don't Do Anything, relient K--Excellent!

9. I Can Be Your Friend, The O.C. Supertones--This is the perfect match of band and song. Two thumbs way up.

10. His Cheeseburger, TAIT. Now if anyone could pull off doing this as a straight up Mr. Lunt/Meatloaf pastiche it's Michael Tait. But no, they turn it into a no-nonsense rock 'n roll song. My favorite on the album.

11. Stand, Skillet--never listened to skillet before . . .'tain't bad. But I'm very surprised that my kids love this one so much! They sing it all the time . . . their Uncle Alex would be proud...

All in all, a fun CD--which as I said, is a good thing, because I've been listening to it non-stop for a week now

For the record: I didn't intend for this to become so anti-SCC. . . but what're you gonna do?

THE DAY approaches

George Will: The state of baseball on opening day

The Old Covenant in the New

Hebrews 8:7–13; 10:16–17

The writer to the Hebrews cites Jeremiah 31:31–34 in his comparison between the Old and the New Covenants. The Old Covenant is the Mosaic, and the New is the Gospel of Christ. What is the contrast? If the Dispensational view were correct, we would expect this contrast to lie in the principle of law and legalism against grace in the New Covenant. The legal principle would be the great defect of the Mosaic Covenant and dispensation.

It is true that the writer of Hebrews makes a contrast, but this particular matter is not a part of it. The faultiness of the Old Covenant is set forth to demonstrate the need for a New and better Covenant. An examination of Hebrews reveals the contrast to lie in the difference between the two orders of priesthood, Aaronic and Melchizedekian, and the Levitical sacrificial system. As one examines the Mosaic economy he cannot help but be struck with the fact that the priesthood and sacrificial system contained therein was not the legal principle of that economy. These are admittedly the gracious principles of that economy. The writer of the Hebrews finds the weakness of the Mosaic administration not in its legalism, but in the imperfections and shortcomings of the gracious provisions of that economy (7:1, 27; 8:3; 9:22ff.).

A consideration of the Levitical economy in its relation to the New Covenant is most revealing (Hebrews 9:23–24). The import is plain. The Levitical sacrifices were patterned after the heavenly Exemplar. That is, Christ, his priestly ministry, and sacrifices are the reality of which the Levitical economy is the shadow. In other words, the Levitical economy was derived from nothing less than the New Covenant itself. Its defectiveness arose from the fact that it was but a shadow and a pattern. It was not the reality. It is in the New Covenant that the reality, the fullness of grace is to be found. This being the fact, the Mosaic economy has its affinities with the New Covenant, and not with the Covenant of Works. The Old Covenant of Moses was a shadow of the New. It was an anticipation of the New. The New reaches its fullness and highest point in the priestly and heavenly ministrations of Christ, who was a priest after the order of Melchizedek. The guiding principles of the Old Covenant must be grace and not works, since it is patterned after the New Covenant, and not the Covenant of Works.

From our survey of these passages we see the unity of the gracious covenants of the Old Testament. There is a continuity of the principle of grace running from Genesis to the New Testament.

From: Systematic Theology by Morton H. Smith, Volumes I and II, (Escondido, CA: Ephesians Four Group) 1999.

Friday, April 02, 2004

Debating Calvinism

Well . . . had some time to kill in a waiting room today, so I read Debating
. It's been sitting on my shelf since it was published, flipped
through briefly, but I hadn't found the time to read it yet. In retrospect,
not sure I should have.

Don't get me wrong--Dr. White's presentations and responses were thoroughly
orthodox, and sometimes I could enjoy the replies to Hunt. But by and
large, I didn't learn anything. Which is fine--I'd like to think that I've
got the basics of Calvinism down by now.

So what about Dave Hunt? Well, never thought much of him--especially after
the original radio interview Dr. White did with him, and hearing some of his
teaching leading up to that monumental waste of paper and ink called, What
Love Is This (insert that lahaye quote here--and what a disappointing
century this will be . . . . ), and then seeing the debate with Dr. Pipa.
I'd have thought that following that disastrous book, and only moderately
better debate, I couldn't think less of Hunt.


Ugh. Horrible. Terrible. Horrific.

I will say this . . . I think one of his quotations from Augustine I found
the kernel of the application for my sermon this week. But that's not what
he wanted me to get out of it, I was supposed to read it and say, "Whoa, I
don't want anything to do with a system that is at all related to his
terrible thinker." Oh well . . .


not sure what I'm feeling today . . . 1 week 'til Yankees vs. Red Sox on Fox...which is way cool.

Or news that The Simpsons' cast is on strike...which is so uncool.

Plus the fact that I just used the phrase "so uncool"

just really don't know what to think today.