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Writer's Block: Sunday Songs

What's your favorite music for a Sunday morning?


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The 150 Psalms of the Bible (We use the 1650 Scottish Metrical Psalter), sung a cappila.  "Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him, talk ye of all his wondrous works."  1 Chron 16:9

See my post on Psalmody - by clicking here.

Tyrannosaurus rexRecently in the news, there was a report of a Tyrannosaurus rex bone found with soft tissue (still-elastic blood vessel). The story mentions that the paleontologists are very surprised that this soft tissue was found at all.   They claim that paleontologists of the past never bothered to look for any residue of soft tissue before, because they assumed that it would have degraded long ago (Can you believe it? Scientists actually admit making assumptions) .    To explain their confusion they indicate that they have more to learn about fossilization and the preservation of tissue.  

However this is not their problem.    The problem has nothing to do with their understanding of fossilization, but their error in dating these bones.    What they should question is their assumptions in their dating methods.  The collagen should have degraded millions of years ago.  There is no way that soft tissue, no matter how small can survive 68 million years!    The truth is the world is only thousands of years old and the finding of a T-rex with soft tissue fits with the Biblical account of a young earth.



The devil is a liar from the beginning

A few posts before I discussed the creation, that it was made in a literal 6 ordinary days and that it was made good. I mentioned that God created the world and then He adorned the world with the beauty of plants, animals. On the last day he created the crown of his work. He created man in his image and breathe into him a living soul. This man?s name was Adam. Adam was the father of all living. God thought it was not good for man to be alone, therefore He placed Adam into a deep sleep and took one of his ribs and made Eve, the first women and the mother of all.

God created man, male and female, after his own image, in knowledge, righteousness, and holiness, with dominion over the creatures. Now when God created man he placed him into a garden, and this garden was called Eden. In Chapter 2:16-17 God gave instructions that man could eat of all the trees save one; the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. This is called the Covenant of Works. In this covenant of works Adam represented himself Eve and all that would come from him. He was the root of all mankind. If he kept in perfection the covenant he would be blessed to all eternity, if he breaks the covenant then death. Now it is important to note that Adam had the power to keep this covenant. Adam was not like us he was sinless and walked perfectly before God. Adam had the law of God perfectly written on his heart. Adam was created holy, and righteous, but he was also mutable or changeable!

It is at this point we are introduced to a fiendish spiritual foe, called the devil. The devil is a fallen angel which took upon himself the form of a serpent. In his temptation he worked on the weaker vessel. He lured her by asking a question which would lead to doubt by suggesting; ?Did God Really Say?? He advanced himself by then calling God a liar by saying; ?You will not die?. Lastly he replace God?s word with his own by insisting; ?You will be like God?.

Learn from the fall ? the devil is a liar from the beginning. He seeks your destruction and he uses the same modus operondi (the same plan of attack). He seeks the most vulnerable place of attack. He starts simply; by questioning God?s word, followed by calling God in error, and then with a new void created, he replaces God?s words with this own lies. The devil does not come to us with horns, and a tail. He speaks slightly as an angel of light, as a wolf in sheep?s clothing. He comes like a harlot and seduces the senses in order to catch you in his trap. The Bible tells us to be wise as serpents, to recognize his attack and to take counter measures. We need to firmly know that God is always true and the devil is always a liar. Every time we see a grave yard or hear of death, disease, or sickness we need to remind ourselves that Satan is, and always will be, a liar.

We should be thankful that after the covenant of works ? God set up a better covenant of grace to redeem His people from their sins. He did not do this for the angels which fell from heaven ? but he did do it for us ? those that are from the dust. Those that sinned against him and have no love for him. All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. There?s none righteousness, no not one. Our righteousness is as dirty rags.

Mankind?s relationship with God was severed when man chose to follow the devil instead of his creator. When we fell, we lost communion with God and came under his wrath and curse. A plague of sin followed man in this world and with that death and decay.

?All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way?  (Isaiah 53:6)

What this means is that all mankind on their own are to be cast into hell fire to burn forever. Instead, God out of His mercy decided that he was going to save a people to Himself. In order to make these people holy, God sent His only son, Jesus Christ to earth to satisfy God?s wrath for all the sins of His people.

?For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.? (Romans 6:23)

This is why God sends forth a command to all the nations, to repent and believe the
gospel. What does it mean to believe the gospel? We are called to fully believe and completely trust the promises of God in our hearts. When Jesus told a man that his son was alive the man "believed the word that Jesus had spoken unto him". We too are to believe the word that Jesus speaks, which is the Holy Bible. We are to believe in the gospel, that is, the good news of salvation provided by Jesus Christ. We are to believe that Jesus perfectly fulfilled the law of God and died and rose the third day for the sins of His people. We are to believe that Jesus today sits at the right hand of God the Father as a victor over death and the grave. We are to believe that He not only provides a way of salvation but that He alone has the power to save.

 
?That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.? (Romans 10:9)
 
What I lay before you logically should be on the top of your list of priorities. It is a question of where you will spend eternity. Jesus told a story once of a rich man that had ongoing plans to build to enlarge his wealth. This rich man thought to himself;
 
?Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, eat, drink, and be merry.?
 
And God responded to him;
 
?Fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which  thou hast provided??
 
Do not be like this misguided man that had poor priorities. I challenge you to make this your top priority. Today is the day of salvation! You are called to turn to God, repent of your sins and you are to believe the good news of Jesus Christ. May God give you the grace to believe and confess Jesus Christ as your Savior and your Lord.
 
?Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.? (Isaiah 55:6, 7)
Standing like a Stone Wall

At the First Battle of Bull Run (a.k.a. First Manassas) in July 1861, Jackson's brigade provided vital reinforcements in an effort to hold the line. Brigadier General Barnard Elliott Bee, Jr, exhorted his own troops by shouting,

    "There is Jackson standing like a stone wall. Let us determine to die here, and we will conquer. Follow me!"

This is how General Jackson received his nickname of Stonewall, and his men the name of the Stonewall Brigade.
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In church or political struggles there are times when retreat seems the best and easiest option. Such a retreat comes when our feet just feel like following our inner feelings of disappointed. That is the time when we need to rely on our discipline and muster courage to rally our own hearts to the cause! This is the very definition of persistence.

per·sis·tence (pr-sstns, -zs-) The act of holding firmly and steadfastly to a purpose, state, or undertaking despite obstacles, warnings, or setbacks.

The Bible also gives us encouragement to pursue truth, despite obstacles, warnings, or setbacks.

    "Only be thou strong and very courageous..." (Joshua 1:7) 

    "...it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints."  (Jude 1:3)

    "Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong" (1 Cor. 16:13)

I tell you this because we are in days when many lukewarm Christians are running in retreat.  It would be easy to follow them.  Instead take courage!     We should stand our ground, when we have have God's Word on our side! We should dig our heals in, like in the days of the Reformation and be like a stone wall - unmoveable, unshakeable - standing in faith against the enemies of the church.  

Let us determine to die here, and we will conquer!.
Salvation by Grace Alone

I write this in defense of the Biblical doctrine of salvation by grace alone. I have heard from a minister some years ago that we are not to teach the doctrine of salvation by grace alone - until they are mature in the Christian faith. I was shock with this view - because God did not hide this teaching in the Bible. I believe it should be presented clearly before all. I will start by defining the doctrine in the standard format by going through the acronym TULIP, then some common objections and ending with a summarization of the doctrine.

T U L I P
We can tell that there is a problem with the world. We open up the newspaper and see many acts of rape and murder and corruption. The "T" in TULIP stands for total depravity which is sometimes referred to as total inability. God looks at our hearts (something we can not do) and tells us that we are "deceitful above all things and desperately wicked" (Jer. 17:9) The Bible uses some of the ugliest language about the condition of man. The Bible compares our sin with leprosy, blindness and death. Many people get confused by this doctrine because they make the mistake of comparing themselves with other people. However if you want to understand the depravity of man you need to compare yourself with the perfect holiness and glorious God Almighty. (Remember God is to holy to look upon evil and He hates the workers of iniquities. Habakkuk 1:13, Psalm 5:5)

T U L I P
The "U" stands for unconditional election. This means that God chose His people from the foundation of the world. That they can do nothing and they have nothing in them that merits salvation. This teaching makes sense after one understands total depravitiy. If people are so depraved that they would truly seek the Lord on the Lord's terms, they it only follows that God must do something to change man's will.

Proof Text(s):
John 1:12 "But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God." Ephesians 2:8-9 "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast."

T U L I P
The "L" stands for limit atonement which is sometimes referred to as particular redemption. This means that Jesus? atonement was only for his people and not for the those that are not His elect. The view that Jesus died for the whole world is not logical or Biblical. If Jesus died for someone and then they went to hell then that persons sins would have been paid twice. No Jesus only died on the cross for his people.

Proof Text(s):
Matt. 1:21 "And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins." John 10:11 I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. John 10:26 But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you.

T U L I P
The "I" in irresistible grace means that God gives his elect during there life a new heart whereby he changes a person?s will, whereby they will love him. No one can resist God. After God elected a person they will become saved without any doubt.

Proof Text(s):
John 6:44 "No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day."

T U L I P
The "P" stands for perseverance of the saints. This means once someone is truly saved they are always saved. This is why the Bible talks about peace and rest in Christ. We are secure in Christ and can never lose or salvation.

Proof Text(s):
John 10: 27-29 "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand."

Objection #1: Doesn?t this doctrine mean that God is not a gentleman - because he forces us to be saved?

If my child was running toward a burning stove would it be unloving to grab her against her will away from the stove? God saves those running head long into hell - thank God for this intervention.

Objection #2: Because we are not saved through the law does this mean that the law is not important?

Romans 7:12 "Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good." We are duty bound to keep whole law in this life. Unsaved individual will find temporal benifits in doing so. However the greatest use to the unsaved is that the law reveals the sinful condition of man so that man is duty bound to seek redemption. In addition, the saved glorify God by their keeping of the law (even though there is indwelling sin in there members).

Objection #3: How can you say that we are totally depraved when I see people do good works occasion?

Total depravity does not mean that we are as bad as we can be. This is not because we have goodness in us, but that God restrains sin in this life. We look at the outward and see a "good act" but they motives behind the act are not purely good. "..for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart." 1 Samuel 16:7

Objection #4: I have seen people fall from faith - how can you say that you can not lose your salvation?

When we are saved God gives us what? Eternal life (Matthew 25:46)! How can anyone lose something that is eternal! When someone appears to "fall away" it means one of two possibilities. Either they were never really saved or they are still saved and will receive chastisement from the Lord which will bring them back into the fold again. As God has written in John 10:29; "My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father's hand." When God says no man, He means NO MAN.

In summary, salvation is through faith, and that without the works of the law, that a person is justified. This faith is a gift (by grace) given to his elect from God. Justification is a legal declaration of God in which a person?s past, present, and future sins were imputed to Christ?s atonement work and Christ's righteousness from his active and passive obedience is imputed to the person. Justification is a work that God does in a person, in which, he is completely passive. It is not a process of lawful obedience in which someone become right with God. Justification is a declaration and this does not mean that we are without sin in ours members.

 

meditate in the field
Genesis 24:63a
And Isaac went out to meditate in the field at the eventide:
 
My daughter Elizabeth and I went out to take pictures of the trees, the birds, and different landscapes.   Some of the pictures were fantastic, not because we created something, but that we captured a picture that God created.   There is beauty, splendor and wisdom in creation which we walk by and miss.   This is one reason that I love photography is that it makes me slow down and look for the beauty that God has made.  It has been said; that we can learn more from a flower then all the uninspired books in the world about God being the creator.
 
 
Who made the world? 


Science has a law called the the First Law of Thermodynamics which asserts that matter or its energy equivalent can neither be created nor destroyed under natural circumstances.   Even when we consume something with fire we have a substance change from previous material into heat, ash and smoke.   Even the heat flows somewhere else and is absorbed (not destroyed) by something else.   Modern secular science is correct as far as what nature can NOTdo it ? but they err since they do not really consider, that there was a beginning and there was a supernatural origin of energy.   That God put aside many of the laws which we live by, and created everything from nothing.   

In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.
And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.
And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
(Genesis 1:1-3)

In the beginning of this creation ? God created everything from nothing!   'God that made the world and all things therein' (Acts 17:24). He spoke and there it was. 'By the word of the Lord were the heavens made' (Ps. 33:6) in a mere six days. 

Genesis 1:1-3 "And God saw the light, that it was good:"

That?s a hard point to miss in the creation account. After each day God says it was good.   It was perfect without any flaw or sin.   It was perfectly in harmony with God. God made the world to demonstrate his own glory. The world is a looking glass, in which we may see the power and goodness of God shine forth. 'The heavens declare the glory of God' (Ps. 19:1). The creation is like a wonderfully curious piece of tapestry, in which we may see the skill, knowledge, and wisdom of Him that made it.
The Worldwide Flood & Noah?s ArkA few years ago I told a young man that did not believe in the Bible, that I believed in Adam and Eve and the response I received was astonishment; ?I guess you also believe in Noah?s flood?

Yes I do! The Bible is clear that God destroyed the whole world by water, around 2348 BC, saving only Noah, his wife, his three sons, their wives, and some of the land animals. The scriptures are all that I need, to know for certain that this account is a historical fact. However there is an abundant amount of evidence which shows this really occurred in history.

The evidence shows that a mighty worldwide catastrophe occurred in this world, which caused the dinosaurs to become extinct. I agree the worldwide flood is a might catastrophe which changed the dinosaur?s world so much they became extinct.

We have a massive worldwide layer of fossils, pointing to a world wide catastrophe. What happens when an animal dies today? It decays into dust. You need to ask yourself the question why we have fossils. Fossils are proof that there was worldwide rapid death at one time and that animals and plants were quickly buried. What could have caused this?  Answer: The Flood

Consider the many, many similar stories found in other cultures around the world regarding a worldwide flood? Dr. Duane Gish, in Dinosaurs by Design, says that there are more then 270 stores from different part of the world about a devastating flood. One that is very striking is from China, where we find that a man named Fuhi, his wife his three sons and three daughters were the only ones to escape a worldwide flood. Then there is a story which comes from Hawaii which tells us that the world became a wicked evil place and Nu-u made a large canoe roofed over like a house and filled it with animals, and was the only ones to escape a worldwide flood.

Those which are skeptics typically ask several questions about this. First one is how a person can gather all animals together. Second question is what about the dinosaurs? Third question is how can ancient man make such a boat? Fourth question, is the ark shaped structure on Mt. Ararat, Noah's ark?  Lastly how can this ark hold all these animals?

First question, is how a person can gather all animals together.

There was no need of Noah to bring all the different type which is in a species. He needed only bring one type of each species. Within the DNA of that one species would be the variety of all the different variations of that species we see today. While today we have 165 known types of owls with in the species, only one pair with the DNA holding all the variety was needed. This greatly reduces the number of animals needed to be gathered on the ark. Also it should be remembered that scripture teaches that animals will obey God?s commands. That all God had to do is command the animals to assemble and they would gather in mass, like they did for Adam. In Genesis 2:19 we read: "And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air: and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof."

Second question, is what about the dinosaurs?

The scriptures are clear that all animals were represented on the ark therefore dinosaurs would also have been on the passenger manifest. However there is no indication that the dinosaurs were adult size, but could have been small baby dinosaurs which would have greatly reduced the cargo space needed and the food consumed.

Third question is, how can ancient man make such a boat?

Noah?s ark is not be the biggest ship every built, the Queen Mary II, the Titanic were much larger ships. However Noah?s ark would have been the largest wooden vessel, that has ever been built. It is important to remembered that Noah?s ark was not a ship but was more like a rectangle box on the water.

The instructions for design are given in Gen. 6:14ff. It needed ONLY to be sea worthy, and needed no propulsion or navigation system. The Ark had a ratio of 30 x 5 x 3. According to modern ship-builders, this ratio is perfect and shows an advanced knowledge of ship-building. A 1993 Korean study by Dr. Seon Hong at the world-class ship research center was unable to find fault with the specifications. In any event, God saved this family of eight and kept them alive partly by giving divine directions to Noah, as to how to build the boat, but also by His sovereign hand brought this family of through a worldwide catastrophe.

Fourth question, is the ark shaped structure on Mt. Ararat, Noah's ark?

There have been reports of ancient wood and an ark-like shape on the mountain. While this is interesting,  I personally am very skeptical that this as the remains of the real ark. If this particular shape is the ark then the animals would have to travel down almost a 17,000 foot mountain!   To this writter this seems unlikely. 

Lastly how can this ark hold all these animals?

Over the period of 120 years Noah and family built an ark which measured from 437 feet to 512 feet in length and three stories high. The volume of this vessel is the equivalent of 569 standard railroad boxcars. Now from what I indicated before regarding the need of only one pair of every animal species, it could have been as little as 2,000 individual animals on the ark. The ark volume could have fit eight times that number with adequate room for provisions.

I would say that size of the ark is a small factor easily explained. A greater concern would have been securing the animals on the boat, the handling of food and the removal of waste. Animals would need cages or harnesses to keep them from getting hurt. There is no doubt that feeders would have been used to minimize the work of feeding of the animals. The removal of waste could have been as simple as the use of a little water on a sloped floor allowing the manure to run to a central location.   All in all, alot of work - but do able.

All in all, like I said in the beginning? I believe the Bible and there is no doubt that God?s word is true. God destroyed the first world by water because of their wickedness. We are told that Noah found grace in the eyes of God (Genesis 6:8) that Noah had faith in God and the coming Messiah (Hebrews 11:7). That God was merciful to Noah and his family and delivered them from destruction. When the destruction was over, Noah came from the ark and God said that he would never destroy the world again by water (Genesis 9:11). However there is a day when God is going to destroy the world with fire and deliver those which are His people into a new heaven and earth to dwell forevermore (1 Peter 3:20). Those that lived in Noah?s day ignored his preaching of a coming flood, are you going to make the same mistake, and ignore the warning of a coming judgment?

Adopting the confession and catechisms of a churchWhen a church officer (ruling elder or pastor) joins a church they take an oath to the standards of the church, indicating that the system of doctrine of their standards are the doctrines which they believe are taught in scripture. Over the years their having been people which have reinterpeted the word "system" as something lesser then the whole doctrine taught in the standards. However the use of the word "system" does not necessitate that subscription type has any looseness. The system mentioned in the oath IS the confession and catechisms themselves. This here is an excerpt from Morton H. Smith's address before the PCA GA 1992


    "Do you sincerely receive and adopt the Confession of Faith and the Catechisms of this Church, as containing the system of doctrine taught in the Holy Scriptures..." Notice that the vow requires the adoption of the Confession and Catechisms, and not just the system of doctrine. It holds that the ordained is subscribing to nothing more nor less that the entirely of the Confession and Catechisms as containing the system of doctrine taught in the Scriptures. In other words, it is because they contain the system of doctrine taught in Scripture that we adopt the Confession and Catechisms."


The Westminster Standards are a system ? and are not an unrelated list of doctrines. This being the case exceptions are not advancements in its teaching, instead they are a reductions in what it teaches. Typically LOOSE/SYSTEM exceptions are request for greater latitude regarding; the law, baptism, Sabbath observance, the days of creation, repentance unto life, areas of reformed worship, pictures of Christ, and issue related to marriage and divorce. IMO these are differences are typically accepted weaknesses, found in the church from the past, which the church refuses to deal with decisively and Biblically.

There are normally two types of exceptions to the standards, discussed at Presbyteries. One ?exception? which I do not consider an exception (which many church officers have) is that there are potions of the standards which might be worded better. I have seen ministers state such things as exceptions in front of Presbyteries, and personally I do not think it was needed.

Now the second type is a true exception. However they are not merely sections of the standards that are unimportant, instead they are accepted weaknesses found in the church history, which the church has refused to correct. Since some people (wrongly) point to Calvin as weak on the Sabbath observance, Minister X can have the same weakness. Since Machen, had a weakness on the days of creation, Minister Y can have a weakness on the same weakness. Often LOOSE/SYSTEM subscription is just a refusal to reform, and ends up prorogating futher weakness and disunity within the church and session. It keeps the church continually battling within, instead of the church standing fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel (Philippians 1:27).

In a STRICT subscription denomination there can be a smaller window of allowable exceptions (the most common exception is regarding days of creation; day-age, gap theory). The exceptions which are allowable must be declared before Presbytery, and they can not be taught by the minister. My problem with this subscription is that you can attend a congregation for years and never hear a sermon on creation ? because the minister has an exception. How is that fair or loving to a congregation?

FULL subscription which is at the highest point of strict subscription, merely corrects these unbiblical exceptions. I have heard people refer to full subscription as absolute subscription! I object to the term, and sadly I suspect it reflects a bias on this issue. FULL subscription does not mean the standards are perfect or absolute, there are potions of the standards which might be worded better, however this is not an exception.

No one is forced into subscribing to the standards they enter into the oath of their free will. If they do at a later date develop an exception (which is not a fundamental of the faith) they can certainly present their case at Presbytery (Acts 15:6). If the Highest church court agrees with the petitioner they can change the constitution (e.g. by deletion). If the Presbytery turns him down (and if the exception is not a fundamental of the faith) they are allowed to leave in peace.

IMO FULL subscription can be considered the most unifying, consistent and honest subscription method because it?s fundamentally WYSIWYG subscription (What You See Is What You Get subscription). When we say we believe these things that are in the standards, we really do believe a single an unconfused meaning of what is in the Holy Scriptures.


"For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints." (1 Cor. 14:33)
Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God
I do contend that pushing God out of the way when we exam empirical evidence is a godless approach to origin. Modern science says that unless it can be placed on a slide and examined under a microscope it?s not science and can not be considered.   While this may seem logical to some, it is in fact hypocrisy.  Let me illustrate.    The rules which they will observe and test their experiences are called the rules of Logic.   They can not be placed into a test tube and examined, however THEY are accepted as fact.     Then why do we accept these rules as fact, but that they are evident in every day life.     The same is true regarding God.  He is evident in every day life and was the one which gave us the rules of Logic, to begin with!     
 
The very fact that some scientist place God on a shelf before they look at a rock formation shows that they are catering to a preconceived notion that there is no God. Yes the rock formation appears to have great age, but did not God create Adam with the appearance of age? In the biblical story of Adam and Eve we read of two fully grown humans, we read of fully grown animals, and we read of fully grown trees.   Therefore if a scientist was in the Garden of Eden five minutes after creation, he would have erroneously concluded that the world was very old.  
 
Let me say a few words of explanation regarding Carbon-14 dating.    Our atmosphere contains C-14 which is an unstable isotope because of cosmic rays entering the atmosphere.    Therefore the plants and animals which take in nutrients also take in C-14 (don?t worry it?s a very tiny amount).  Upon death of the plant or animal the unstable isotope slowly becomes nitrogen-14, a stable isotope.     Using today?s measurements, the rate of this decay has been calculated and Carbon-14 has a half-life of 5730 years.     Notice what I have written ?Using today?s measurements? ? what does this assume? But that the rate of decay has been constant and that the original creation had no Carbon-14.  
 
You see modern scientists have a bias against God, because they rule out from the beginning the existence of God.    The truth is that a godless science approach can not prove with observation what occurred ?millions of years ago?.   They simply, were not there when it happened.   They can only look at what exist today and come up with theories based on a number of unverifiable assumptions (e.g. that Carbon-14 rate of radio active decay has never changed, that a Creator did not create with the appearance of age).  
 
As for Creationists, we prefer a God-centered approach to science, opposed to faith in an atheistic worldview as it relates to origins.
 
Heb 11:3 Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.
The Bible's Timeline from Adam to Abraham

The Bible's Timeline from Adam to Abraham.     (click image to enlarge)

0000yts4 


Seeing that I have been laid up because of my sprained ankle, I figured that I would finish the Biblical timeline that I started.   The beginning I marked as year zero and runs out to 2008 years from creation when Abram (aka Abraham) was born.   One thing you will notice is that the generations look as one would expect (step like) until the flood.    After the flood they all seem to live as contemporaries of each other, with some fathers out living even their children.   This is because the life spans are dramatically being shortened after the flood.    Some suggest that this is because of changes in our environment which were caused by the flood. 

Now this chart is important because it allows me to figure out the year which creation occurred.    

Adam to Abraham (from our chart)2008
Abraham Enters Canaan (Gen. 12:4) 430
Start of the Temple (1 Kings 6:1) 480  (479 + days)
To the Division of Israel (1 Kings 11:42) 36   (36 + days)
To the Destruction of Jeruselum (Ezekiel 4:5) 389    (389 + days)
TOTAL (From creation to the destruction of the temple)    3,418


This would bring us to the destruction of Jerusalem which secular sources record it to have occurred in 565 BC.   Taking the 565 and added to 3,418 would mean that creation occurred 4004 BC.      This would make the earth 6,009 years old.     

This is the same chronology which is sometimes called Ussher-Lightfoot chronology (published 1642?1644)

Other dates would include: 
2348 BC - The Flood (4004 BC - 1656 YFC) 
1921 BC - God's call to Abraham (4004 BC - 2008 YFC) +75 [Genesis 12:4] 

New Jersey and Civil UnionsI am grieved for my home state of New Jersey. As of today New Jersey supports 'Civil Unions' of those that practice the sin of homosexuality. God is calling on New Jersey; in fact the country to repent of this sin!

Below is a letter I just sent into the local papers.
- Brian

--------------------
Thanksgiving 2006

Here's a few pictures from our last Thanksgiving.  

 
Britney & Grand-dad
ALL SMILES!

 
Meg & Paige
JUST HANGING OUT

  
Uncle Brian and Britney

 
 
Tara and Mom


 
Kevin n' Danielle


 
Tara n' James
WORKING IN DA KITCHEN

 
 
Fiona n' Grand-dad
A game of chess with Grand-dad

Creation: 6 Days /24 Hours
A terrible indictment against many churches today is their willingness to allow various views on the days of creation; when the Bible is so clear on the matter.    According to scripture creation occurred in the space of 6 days and all ?very good.?    The length of each today is made clear in that the language speaks about an evening and morning for each day.   That a number is used and that the Hebrew word ?Yom? is used only when a literal day is in view.   In addition when the sabbath ordainance is given, we are told that we work six days and rest one day, as shown in creation (see Exodus 20:11).   Nothing in the passage, nothing in the Bible leads a person to any other conclusion then a six day, twenty-four hour creation.   
 
The book of Genesis is not a book of prophecy or poetry it is a book of history. The word ?Genesis? literally means beginnings.    It is God?s revelation through His servant Moses as to how the world was created.    Clearly Moses took the days as literal days and so did the church for thousands of years until these faithless times.   Not until so called modern science did a 180 degree turn and rejected God did the church begin to wavier on the authority of scripture.   The church needs to decide if God?s Word on all matters which it touches upon is true or not.    This is not a squabble about a insignificant issue this is an issue of authority; this is an issue where the church, where every Christian needs to lock arm and arm, and stand on the Word of God as it only perfect authority! 
Biblically Prescribed Worship

Biblically prescribed worship, (a.k.a. The regulative principle of worship is the 20th century term) is the historical Calvinist teaching on how the second commandment and therefore the Bible orders public worship. This principle teaches us that a command or approved example from the Bible is NEEDED for any activity to be included in worship.    We have been given the freedom to worship God as He requires.   No mere man has the right to bind the conscience of other Christians with the adding of their own traditions.        

In Mark 7:7 Jesus said: 

                        "Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching [for] doctrines the commandments of men."

This important principle is found repeatedly in the Old Testament (see Lev. 10:1-2, 1 Samuel 13:13, Jeremiah 7:31, 2 Samuel 6).    

Sadly many of the 'reformed' churches have forgotten what the reformation was about.   Yes it was about salvation by grace alone, through faith alone,  but it was also about worship.   Question and Answer number 110 of the Westminster Larger Catechism tells us, that all false worship is "spiritual whoredom," and that breaking this commandment will bring punishment, and obedience will bring blessing for generations. Many people in the reformed community consider worship the last concern in order to reform the church, when God tells us it is vital. This is why John Calvin placed worship as a main reason for the reformation, quote:

"If it be inquired, then, by what things chiefly the Christian religion has a standing existence amongst us and maintains its truth, it will be found that the following two not only occupy the principle place, but comprehend under them all the other parts, and consequently the whole substance of Christianity, viz., a knowledge, first of the mode in which God is duly worshipped; and, secondly of the source from which salvation is to be obtained."

What happened in the church, when Calvin, Knox, and the Westminster Divines applied the doctrine of prescribed worship? What were the fruits of this teaching? First, Geneva and then the church of England and Scotland removed the traditions of Rome and setup those things that God ordained in worship. Secondly, there was church unity. If we are able to setup our own tradition and another denomination has their traditions, and so on, then as a church we are more divided and the work for unity is that much more difficult. Let us learn from history past and observe the fruit that it bore. A good tree, will certainly bare good fruit (Luke 6:43).


A Cappella Singing In WorshipIn the Old Testament, the religious use of musical instruments was restricted (e.g. particular instruments, the Levi's played them) for worship. Outside of the use in the Temple there is no warrant in the scriptures to use musical accompaniment in public worship.  In addition if we look at the New Testament scriptures, we find nothing but silence about their use in worship.    By this obmission, scripture is teaching that God does not want the artificial voice of instruments (as what was done in the ceramonial/temple law), but now a better praise via. the living voices of his people. 

Unknown to too many Protestants is that musical instruments were not used by the apostolic Church. In fact, they were not used for 7 or 8 centuries of the early church. Note some of the early church father: 

AQUINAS "Our church does not use musical instruments, as harps and psalteries, to praise God withal, that she may not seem to Judaize." (Thomas Aquinas, Bingham's Antiquities, Vol. 3, page 137)
 
AUGUSTINE "musical instruments were not used. The pipe, tabret, and harp here associate so intimately with the sensual heathen cults, as well as with the wild revelries and shameless performances of the degenerate theater and circus, it is easy to understand the prejudices against their use in the worship." (Augustine 354 A.D., describing the singing at Alexandria under Athanasius)
  
CHRYSOSTOM "David formerly sang songs, also today we sing hymns. He had a lyre with lifeless strings, the church has a lyre with living strings. Our tongues are the strings of the lyre with a different tone indeed but much more in accordance with piety. Here there is no need for the cithara, or for stretched strings, or for the plectrum, or for art, or for any instrument; but, if you like, you may yourself become a cithara, mortifying the members of the flesh and making a full harmony of mind and body. For when the flesh no longer lusts against the Spirit, but has submitted to its orders and has been led at length into the best and most admirable path, then will you create a spiritual melody." (Chrysostom, 347-407, Exposition of Psalms 41, (381-398 A.D.) Source Readings in Music History, ed. O. Strunk, W. W. Norton and Co.: New York, 1950, pg. 70.)
 
 CLEMENT "Moreover, King David the harpist, whom we mentioned just above, urged us toward the truth and away from idols. So far was he from singing the praises of daemons that they were put to flight by him with the true music; and when Saul was Possessed, David healed him merely by playing the harp. The Lord fashioned man a beautiful, breathing instrument, after His own imaged and assuredly He Himself is an all-harmonious instrument of God, melodious and holy, the wisdom that is above this world, the heavenly Word." ? "He who sprang from David and yet was before him, the Word of God, scorned those lifeless instruments of lyre and cithara. By the power of the Holy Spirit He arranged in harmonious order this great world, yes, and the little world of man too, body and soul together; and on this many-voiced instruments of the universe He makes music to God, and sings to the human instrument. "For thou art my harp and my pipe and my temple"(Clement of Alexandria, 185AD, Readings p. 62)


At that point the Church of Rome began to use musical instruments in worship. When the reformation occurred most Protestant churches rejected the use of musical accompaniment during worship (e.g. Calvin, Knox, and Westminster Divines). 


    BEZA "If the apostle justly prohibits the use of unknown tongues in the church, much less would he have tolerated these artificial musical performances which are addressed to the ear alone, and seldom strike the understanding even of the performers themselves." (Theodore Beza, scholar of Geneva, Girardeau's Instrumental Music, p. 166)

    LUTHER "The organ in the worship Is the insignia of Baal? The Roman Catholic borrowed it from the Jews." (Martin Luther, Mcclintock & Strong's Encyclopedia Volume VI, page 762)

    CALVIN "Musical instruments in celebrating the praises of God would be no more suitable than the burning of incense, the lighting of lamps, and the restoration of the other shadows of the law. The Papists therefore, have foolishly borrowed, this, as well as many other things, from the Jews. Men who are fond of outward pomp may delight in that noise; but the simplicity which God recommends to us by the apostles is far more pleasing to him. Paul allows us to bless God in the public assembly of the saints, only in a known tongue (I Cor. 14:16) What shall we then say of chanting, which fills the ears with nothing but an empty sound?" (John Calvin, Commentary on Psalms 33)


Singing without musical instruments was so identified with protestant worship that the term "a cappella" actually means in the style of the chapel. See: 
A Cappella

Today the Presbyterians of Scotland (Free Church of Scotland, Free Church of Scotland Continuing, and the Free Presbyterian Church) still do not use musical instruments in their worship. In America the Reformed Presbyterian Church of North America (which is older then the PCUSA) also does not use musical instruments. Then there is also the Reformed Presbyterian Churches of Australia, Ireland, and Scotland which also sing a cappella.

Also interesting to note is the love of music that these churches have. The first time I went to a congregation that sung a cappella was a wonderful experience. Everyone sang! and their voices filled the church! Why was their singing so good? I found that many of them sang frequently at home - they also came together to sing during the week. They had lectures on how they may improve their praise. They privately reviewed the psalms and tunes that they were going to sing on Sunday. What a surprise it was to me; I went in expecting a cold boring congregation but found the exact opposite! I quess I learned again not to judge a book by its cover.


New: Sermon Series on Biblical WorshipIf anyone is interested in a new resource for Biblical worship - the follow is the first in a series of sermons on "How Should We Worship God?" given by my pastor Rev. A. Dallison.

- Brian
====================================

Title: The Principles of Biblical Worship 
Subtitle: How Should We Worship God? (part 1)
Speaker: Anthony Dallison
Event: Sunday Evening
Date: 11/12/2006
Bible: John 4:19-26
Length: 45 minutes

Details: The most important activity in which we can ever be engaged in this world is to worship God acceptably. And Jesus taught the woman of Samaria in these brief but pregnant words the framework of that true biblical worship in which the Father still delights, and which we are follow on every occasion that we assemble together as worshippers! May we honour Him, that He may not be disappointed and grieved as He meets with us in His worship Sabbath by Sabbath, but rather rejoice that we worship 'in Spirit and in truth' before Him!

Prayer at Burger King


We find in Acts 27:35 that we are given the example that ?he [Paul] gave thanks in the presence of them all?. In other words we are merely doing our required duty as Christians when we give thanks at the local restaurant. While it is important to remember Christ?s words regarding, holier then thou prayers on street corners, we should also remember Paul's and also Daniel's example of prayer. When Daniel is forbidden to pray to Jehovah - he offered up prayer, in the same manner, before it was frowned upon. Calvin when dealing with Daniel?s prayer says;  

    "Daniel, therefore, was obliged to persevere in the holy practice to which he was accustomed, unless he wished to be the very foulest apostate! He was in the habit of praying with his windows open: hence he continued in his usual course, lest any one should object that he gratified his earthly king for a moment by omitting the worship of God. I wish this doctrine was now engraven on the hearts of all men as it ought to be; but this example of the Prophet is derided by many, not perhaps openly and glaringly, but still clearly enough, the Prophet seems to them too inconsiderate and simple, since he incurs great danger, rashly, and without any necessity. For they so separate faith from its outward confession as to suppose it can remain entire even if completely buried, and for the sake of avoiding the cross. they depart a hundred times from its pure and sincere profession. We must maintain, therefore, not only the duty of offering to God the sacrifice of prayer in our hearts, but that our open profession is also required, and thus the reality of our worship of God may clearly appear."
 

While we have a duty of prayer in our heart, there is also a required duty of our open profession! Yes - we must be mindful of our indwelling sin - but we need to remember that sometimes a Christian?s duty is also a public duty. Sometimes God uses such public displays to witness and to bless others around us. When we leave the house dressed in our Sunday-best, with a Bible in our hands we are a witness to those in our neighborhood of what they should be doing. Are we seeking to be holier then thou? No. We are merely doing our duty to the Lord, and God is pleased to use such works to convict some people and to encourage others.

Repealing 'Blue Laws' on Sunday alcohol sales increased alcohol-related crashes and crash fatalitiesNew Mexico study finds 29 percent increase in Sunday crashes; 42 percent increase in deaths
Albuquerque, New Mexico (October 3, 2006)--The first study to look at the public health impact of lifting a statewide ban on Sunday packaged alcohol sales found a substantial increase in alcohol-related traffic crashes and fatalities, according to an article published today in the online version of the American Journal of Public Health.

According to the study, since New Mexico lifted its ban on Sunday sales of packaged alcohol, there has been a 29 percent increase in alcohol-related crashes and a 42 percent increase in alcohol-related crash fatalities on Sundays. This increase has meant an additional 543 alcohol-related crashes and 42 alcohol-related crash deaths during five years after the ban was lifted.

Delaware, Maine, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Virginia have lifted similar bans since 1998, despite the lack of data on the impact of such legislation. And many of the 15 states with current bans on Sunday alcohol sales are considering repeal--in response to both pressures from the alcohol industry and the need to raise state tax revenues, according to the study.

"For the first time, we have real data on whether blue laws actually protect public health" said study co-author Dr. Garnett McMillan of the Behavioral Health Research Center of the Southwest in Albuquerque, New Mexico. "Today's study finds that the Sunday ban saved lives and prevented hundreds of injuries and fatalities from alcohol-related crashes."

The study, "Legalized Sunday packaged alcohol sales and alcohol-related traffic crashes and crash fatalities in New Mexico" was funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's Substance Abuse Policy Research Program (SAPRP).

According to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration data, New Mexico ranked 8th in the nation in 2005 for alcohol-related crash fatalities per vehicle-mile driven. Prior to July 1, 1995, alcohol could only be purchased in New Mexico bars and restaurants on Sundays. But on that date the state legislature repealed the Sunday ban on packaged alcohol sales, allowing licensed stores to sell alcohol between noon and midnight on Sundays.

Advocates of the repeal argued that it would reduce alcohol-related crashes and fatalities by diverting alcohol consumption from bars to homes, and thus eliminate the need for people to drive home from drinking establishments while alcohol-impaired.

The study authors reviewed all alcohol-related motor vehicle crashes in New Mexico between July 1, 1990 and June 30, 2000, and compared the five years before and after the repeal. The study data was derived from Uniform Accident Reports filed by police officers, and covered all reported crashes on public roadways that result in death, personal injury, or $500 or more in property damage, with the reporting officer determining whether alcohol was involved.

The study measured and controlled for historical trends, major holidays, and seasons of the year to ensure that changes in alcohol-related crash rates were not simply attributed to background patterns of motor vehicle crash risks. "For example, we controlled for football season and Super Bowl Sunday," said McMillan.

Comparing pre- and post-repeal data, the authors found that between noon-Sunday and noon-Monday there was a unique rise in both alcohol-related crashes and crash fatalities in the post-repeal period. No other day of the week showed any statistically significant changes, the study reports.

The study revealed 492,396 motor vehicle crashes from 1990-2000, with 45,596 involving alcohol and an average of 12.9 alcohol-related crashes per day. There were 4,620 motor vehicle crash fatalities with 2,341 involving alcohol and an average daily fatality rate of .65 deaths per day.

"By increasing the availability of alcohol on Sundays, you open the door to more opportunities for drinking and driving and the negative consequences that result," said McMillan.


###
The Substance Abuse Policy Research Program (www.saprp.org) of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is a $66 million program that funds research into policies related to alcohol, tobacco and illegal drugs.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation focuses on the pressing health and health care issues facing our country. As the nation's largest philanthropy devoted exclusively to improving the health and health care of all Americans, the Foundation works with a diverse group of organizations and individuals to identify solutions and achieve comprehensive, meaningful and timely change.

For more than 30 years the Foundation has brought experience, commitment, and a rigorous, balanced approach to the problems that affect the health and health care of those it serves. Helping Americans lead healthier lives and get the care they need--the Foundation expects to make a difference in our lifetime. For more information, visit www.rwjf.org.
Women Preachers - Shameful!
I was recently asked the question as to what my thought are on Women Preachers in the church. Clearly the question is one that has been on the rise in this country over the last 100 years, and needs to be answered faithfully, as it has in past generations. In 1 Timothy, chapter two it says:

11 Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection.
12 But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence.


It also says in 1 Corinthians chapter 14;

34 Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.
35 And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.


It is very clear that women are not to teach in the church. However, there are those which say; "but if they are silent - doesn't that contradict Galatians 3:28 where we read;

"There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus."

If you read the context you will see that Galatians is speaking about our place in the covenant. That each person, whether rich or poor, important or not, is equal in the covenant. This is NOT speaking about roles in the church and has NOTHING to do with the subject.

It is important that the church follows scripture, where we find NOT ONE women apostle found in scripture, there is NOT ONE women elder found in scripture, there is NOT ONE women pastor found in scripture, and there was NEVER a women scribe of scripture. But even with all this in the church of Corinth had women which were rebellious and wanted to teach. So God through the Apostle Paul sets the record straight. In the clearest language that could be utilized, Paul ends the debate ? closes the book with a clear command that women are to learn in silence and are not to teach.

But what is Paul's reasoning? Is he saying this is our culture and that is why women can not teach? Is he just a meanie and that he personally does not like women? A resounding NO! Paul is an apostle and his writings are inspired by God. But also note that Paul reasons with us by pointing us back to God?s Word regarding creation with:

13 For Adam was first formed, then Eve.
14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.


In other words, first women can not teach because of the creation order - and secondly because of how the fall of mankind transpired. We find the following in Genesis 2 about the creation order:

?And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.?

Paul explains this is 1 Corinthians 11:

"For the man is not of the woman; but the woman of the man. Neither was the man created for the woman; but the woman for the man."

Paul words are backed up with Genesis! Indeed God created the woman for man.

The second argument that Paul uses is that women was deceived in the fall. In Genesis 3:16 we read that; ?thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee.?

In closing I would remind women that 1 Timothy, chapter two also speaks of women adorning themselves with good works. What is a good work that women can do? They have the gift of prayer, the gift of praising the Lord in worship. The worship of learning from the Word of God as it is read and especially as it is preached.

What is a good work but to submit to the will of God? What is a good work but to take God?s priorities and make them our priorities? What is a good work but to look upon the Biblical and creation order and to say ?Amen? to it.
Sing Psalms Unto Him 1 Chronicles 16:9b

"Sing Psalms Unto Him" 

When we come to what we are to sing we find first off that God has provided an inspired hymnal in the Bible which it is clear that we are to utilize. Most people, even among hymn singers, acknowledge that the Psalter has been given to the church to use in worship. The question that is before us is NOT whether psalms should be sung, instead the question is should hymns be sung. For example, if we look in the scriptures for a command to sing psalms we find both an explicit command to sing the psalms (1 Chronicles 16:9, Psalms 105:2, Jas 5:13) and examples of people singing the Psalter (2 Chronicles 5:13, 2 Chronicles 20:21, 2 Chronicles 29:30, Ezra 3:11, Exodus 15:1). The question is, can the practice of hymnody provide a similar level of evidence for its practice?

The truth is that there is not one example of an uninspired sung and there is not one command given to sing or write uninspired songs. The only arguments that I am aware of are based on speculation or down right feelings. The chairman of the majority report (which argued for the singing of hymns) Rev. Robert S. Marsden, wrote an article for the Presbyterian Guardian in 1948, explaining the work of the committee. In this article Rev. Marsden makes a very important statement. He says, "it would . . . be impossible to prove that uninspired songs are authorized in the Scripture, and to demand such proof before one can in good conscience sing uninspired songs is to demand the impossible!"

Did you get that? To demand a Bible example of an uninspired song would be impossible! In other words the practice is not according to the scriptures! That is what psalm singers have been saying all along, that there is no evidence that uninspired songs are to be written or sung. If you are going to follow scripture as a manual of worship and doctrine you are going have to exclusively use the psalms of the Bible to worship God.

Study: The Effects When Blue laws are RepealedThe Church vs the Mall: What Happens When Religion Faces Increased Secular Competition?

The Gruber-Hungerman paper - entitled "The Church vs. the Mall: What Happens When Religion Faces Increased Secular Competition?" - reports that after blue laws are repealed by a state:

? Religious attendance drops about 5 percent overall on average.

? About 15 percent of those who had been attending religious services weekly no longer attend so regularly.

"Individuals are not dropping out of churchgoing altogether, but rather ... they are simply going less frequently," the authors write.

? Religious contributions decline 13 percent, or about $109 per person per year. Spending by religious institutions falls by about 6.3 percent.

? Drinking rates by youths go up. Before repeal, about 40 percent of nonreligious youths (those in their late teens and 20s) reported having had six or more drinks at one sitting sometime in the past month. About 30 percent of youths defined as "religious" because of their church attendance reported such episodes of heavy drinking.

After repeal, that 10 percent gap closed by about half - the religious drank more.

? Marijuana use goes up. Prior to repeal, 18 percent of nonreligious youths reported smoking marijuana in the past 30 days. Only 9 percent of religious youths used pot. After repeal, the gap disappeared, the study finds.

? Similarly, the gap between the nonreligious and the religious taking cocaine (3 percent vs. 1.5 percent) closed entirely.

Key data for these findings come from the huge National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, started in 1979 and repeated in several subsequent years.

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=923063
The Westminster Guardian
It's here! The first issue of The Westminster Guardian!!!
The Westminster Guardian is a new online publication of the Westminster Presbyterian Church in the United States.

Click On The Image Below:



Table of Contents:

The Crisis in the OPC and PCA
Rev. Brian Schwertley, B.A., M.Div.

The Confession and Practice of the Regulative Principle of Worship
Rev. George Bancroft, B. Sci., M. Div., Th.M.

What Is the National Morals Committee?
Mr. Brian M Hanley

Children's Page/LIfe's Supreme Goal
Re. Anthony Dallison, B.D.
[Mr] Camping on a Weak Foundation? [part 3]As any engineer knows the foundation is extremely important in holding up a structure. In these posts I am reviewing questions, I have with Mr. Camping?s chronologies of the Old Testament (his foundation). Mr. Camping is a well known radio personality which has taught the Bible for many years. In a book Mr. Camping published in 1992, he taught that in all likelihood Christ is to return in 1994. Only recently he has put forth a new book teaching that Christ is now to return in 2011. While I am in agreement that the church today is NOT in good shape; ? I am in disagreement as to his final conclusion that we are living in the time of the "Great Tribulation" and that 2011 is the end of the world.

(Continued from the last blog entry?.)



On the first three pages which Mr. Camping argues for Patriarchal Periods he attempts to show that there is good reason to consider this new approach, because there are serious problems in the old approach. So far he has failed to impress us with two reasons to forgo the obvious and plain understanding of Genesis 5 & 11.

When we come to page 275 Mr. Camping puts forth, what he considers to be checkmate ? regarding Genesis 5 & 11 not being immediate father-son relationships. He calls this "clear proof".

Mr. Camping quotes from Genesis 11:12-13 and compares this with Luke 3:35-36 and notes an extra name ?Cainan? which is not found in Genesis 11:12-13. This at first blush, would indeed look like undisputable proof of his point. The only problem is that from the very early days of the King James Version this name ?Cainan? is suspected to have been a New Testament scribal error which happened about 200 A.D. Here is a quote from John Gill (1697-1771):

    ?This Cainan is not mentioned by Moses in Genesis 11:12 nor has he ever appeared in any Hebrew copy of the Old Testament, nor in the Samaritan version, nor in the Targum; nor is he mentioned by Josephus, nor in 1 Chronicles 1:24 where the genealogy is repeated; nor is it in Beza?s most ancient Greek copy of Luke: it indeed stands in the present copies of the Septuagint, but was not originally there; and therefore could not be taken by Luke from thence, but seems to be owing to some early negligent transcriber of Luke?s Gospel, and since put into the Septuagint to give it authority: I say "early," because it is in many Greek copies, and in the Vulgate Latin, and all the Oriental versions, even in the Syriac, the oldest of them; but ought not to stand neither in the text, nor in any version: for certain it is, there never was such a Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, for Salah was his son; and with him the next words should be connected,?

Mr Larry Pierce, the producer of the Online Bible, and author of a major work on Archbishop Ussher (1581?1656)) writes:

    ?I think we have more than enough evidence that would stand up in any court of law to show that every single copy we have of the LXX text was corrupted some time after AD 220. The copies of the LXX available to both Josephus and Africanus did not include this spurious generation. It is also not in either the Samaritan Pentateuch or the Hebrew manuscripts.

    ?All these predate the New Testament Greek text. And while Josephus was not a Christian writer and would not have been influenced by copies of Luke genealogies, Julius Africanus was a devout Christian. In his Epistle to Aristides ch. 3, he made an extensive study of the genealogies of both Luke and Matthew. In fact he quotes Luke 3:23.9 Hence, Africanus had copies of both the Gospel of Luke and Matthew. So one cannot claim that Africanus did not know about Luke?s gospel or his genealogies. If the copies of Luke?s writings had this spurious Cainan, no doubt Africanus would have amended his chronology to include it. In fact, the earliest known extant copy of Luke, the 102-page (originally 144) papyrus codex of the Bodmer Collection labeled P75 (dated between AD 175 and 22510), omits the extra Cainan. Thus the reading in Luke 3:36 cannot be shown to exist before AD 220.?


Notice the name appeared in the later copy of the Septuagint (the Greek translation of the Old Testament used in Jesus? days) in Genesis 11 as if it was inserted, but this was not so in the earlier copies. Also note that the name ?Caninan? does not appear in Theodore Beza's (Calvin's successor in Geneva) most ancient Greek copies of Luke. In other words what Mr. Camping considered "checkmate", rests upon an extremely weak and seriously questionable word. This argument like the two preceding ones leaves me unimpressed and thus unconvinced that we need to suspect there are gaps in the chronologies in Genesis 5 and 11.
RE: [Mr] Camping on a Weak Foundation? (Part 2)In my last Blog I mentioned that Noah, his son and his grandson were also alive in the days of Peleg - which seems to have been missed by Mr. Camping. I will show this to be a true statement.

If we begin at the number 0 for creation and go forward with the normal historical understanding of Genesis 5 & 11 we find that Noah was born 1056 years from creation. Counting forward we find Shem being born 1558 years after creation, Arphaxad in 1658, Salah in 1693, Eber in 1723 and Peleg in 1757. Now remember; Noah lived almost 1000 years (Genesis 9:29)! That means he would have been alive until 2006 years after creation and Peleg was only born 1757 years after creation. This means that Noah would have been alive for his great, great, great, great, great, great, great grandson's birth Terah, the father of Abraham.

Noah in fact (normal historical understanding) out lived Peleg, by 10 years. Noah would have died 2006 years after creation and Peleg would have died 1996 years after creation.

Detailed Notes:
Shem was born in 1558 because:
1656 (the flood from creation) + 2 - 100 (Genesis 11:10) = 1558
Arhpaxad was born in 1658 because:
1656 (the flood from creation) + 2 (Genesis 11:10) = 1658
Salah was born in 1693 because:
1658 + 35 (Genesis 11:12) = 1693
Eber was born in 1723 because:
1693 + 30 (Genesis 11:12) = 1723
Peleg was born in 1757 because:
1723 + 34 (Genesis 11:16) = 1757
Peleg died in 1996 because:
1757 + 30 + 209 (Genesis 11:19) = 1996 the year Peleg would have died.


Click here to see a visual illustration (YFC = Years From Creation)


[Mr] Camping On A Weak Foundation? (part 2)In these posts I am reviewing questions, I have with Mr. Camping?s chronologies of the Old Testament. Mr. Camping is a well known radio personality which has taught the Bible for many years. In a book Mr. Camping published in 1992, he taught that in all likelihood Christ is to return in 1994. Only recently he has put forth a new book teaching that Christ is now to return in 2011. While I am in agreement that the church today is not in good shape, and I am in agreement that Christ will eventually come ? I am in disagreement as to his final conclusion that we are in the Great Tribulation and that 2011 is the end of the world.

(Continued from the last blog entry?.)

On the next page (page 273) of Mr. Camping?s book he then attempts to take the accepted view (rare gaps) of ?begat?; shown only in genealogy listings (e.g. x begat y) and migrate this idea over to Genesis 5 & 11; which shows far greater interlocking details (e.g. age when born, age when father died and age of death) between the generations. (Mind you; he did not consider the gaps in Matthew 1 as Patriarchal Periods ? but merely left them as unexplained gaps. What one has to do with the other is a mystery to the writer.)

He then (page 274) takes a look at Genesis 5, verse eleven which says;

?Eber lived four and thirty years, and begat Peleg: And Eber lived after he begat Peleg four hundred and thirty years, and begat sons and daughters.?

With this he draws an incomplete diagram showing how this would look visually and points out that Eber, Peleg, and Reu were contemporaries according to the plain understanding of this text. With this he adds that Genesis 10:25; tells us that the earth was divided in Peleg?s day. His argument is simple; why would the scripture use Peleg when his father (Eber) was alive and ?the patriarch of the clan.?

If Mr. Camping drew a more complete diagram of the chronologies, it would be noted that Noah, and his son Shem and his son Arphaxad; were also alive and thus Eber was NOT the patriarch of the clan, as Mr. Camping asserts.

Let us say that God would have used Noah instead of Peleg; and said that in Noah?s days the world was divided. The Bible tells us that Noah lived 950 years, while Peleg only lived 239 years. By using Peleg as a point of time - when the world was divided, God is merely giving us a more precise date when the world was divided. Also one would have mistakenly concluded that the flood and the division of the earth happened at the same time. Where?s the problem? How Mr. Camping can claim that this ?suggests very strongly? the need of his novel dating system, is again a mystery to this writer?

To be continued?. Lord willing

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