Browsing "Notes"
Dec 19, 2018 - Notes    No Comments


You call me Lord, have you listened to me?

You call me Way, have you walked on it?

You call me Wisdom, have you followed me?

You call me The Riches of God, have you prayed to me?

You call me Mercy, have you put your trust on me?

You call me Omnipotence, have you honored me?

You call me Light, have you seen me?

You call me Life, have you longed for me?

You call me Beloved, have you loved me?

You call me Eternal Life, have you sought me?

You call me Honor, have you served me?

You call me Justice, have you feared me?

Sep 14, 2018 - Notes    No Comments

Reformed Heart

The Heart of the Reformed Faith
by Stephen Rees

       The heart of the Reformed faith—the heart of biblical Christianity—is God-centeredness: the conviction that God himself is supremely important. We define all our doctrine in a God-centered way. Sin is horrible because it is an affront to God. Salvation is wonderful because it brings glory to God. Heaven is heaven because it is the place where God is all in all. Hell is hell because it is the place where God manifests his righteous wrath. That God-centeredness is the distinctive feature of the Reformed faith. A Christian may say lots of true things, say, about sin (sin is damaging, sin leads to wretchedness, etc.), but if there is not the God-centered perspective, the most important emphasis of all has been missed.

       I remember how struck I was years ago, reading an essay by Leon Morris, asking, “What is the most common word in Romans?” (I presume he’s omitting such words as “the”—I’m not sure.) What would you guess? Grace? Faith? Believe? Law? No—the most frequent word in Romans is God.

       Just skim through the opening chapters and you will see it immediately. All the great theological statements in Romans have God as their subject: “God gave them over” (1:24, 26). “God ‘will give to each person according to what he has done’ ” (2:6). “God will judge men’s secrets through Jesus Christ” (2:16). “God set [him] forth as a propitiation” (3:25 NKJV). “[God] justifies the ungodly” (4:5 NKJV). “God has poured out his love into our hearts” (5:5). “God demonstrates his own love for us in this” (5:8).

       We can preach things that are true—we can even be five-point Calvinists—but if we lose that “from him and through him and to him are all things” (11:36) awareness, then we’ve lost the heart of Christianity.

       God-centered doctrine must work itself out in God-centered piety. Again, this is the distinctive note of Reformed Christianity. We are obsessed with God himself. We are overwhelmed by his majesty, his beauty, his holiness, his grace. We seek his glory, we desire his presence, we model our lives on his attributes.

       Other Christians may say that evangelism, or mission, or revival, or reconstruction is their great concern. But we have only one concern—God himself—to know him, to mirror him, to see him glorified. We refuse to absolutize any other objective. The salvation of the lost is only important to us insofar as it leads to the hallowing of his name and the coming of his kingdom. The purifying of society is important to us only insofar as it leads to the doing of his will on earth as in heaven. Bible study and prayer are only important to us insofar as they lead us into communion with him.

       This has been the great hallmark of Reformed Christianity down through the centuries. Whether you’re reading the journals of Presbyterians like Andrew Bonar, or the letters of Anglicans like John Newton, or the sermons of Baptists like Charles Spurgeon, this is the note that comes throbbing through. They are obsessed with God himself. They live their lives and do their theology and fulfill their ministry in passionate admiration for God himself. Everything else flows out of their awed worship of God and their trembling love for him.

Sep 9, 2018 - Notes    No Comments

Richard Steele’s Quote

清教徒 Richard Steele (1629-1692)

“無論是多麼虔誠的藉口、多麼美觀的前景、或多麼巨大的壓力,不要被這些理由說服你去擾亂公眾的安寧、羞辱你的政府、或從事任何不合法的計劃… 讓神獨自統治這世界;讓合法的地方官長獨自治理祂的人民;而你要做的是樂意地服從或平靜地受苦。「你們若為基督的名受辱罵,便是有福的,因為神榮耀的靈常住在你們身上。 你們中間卻不可有人因為殺人、偷竊、作惡、好管閒事而受苦。」(彼前4:14-15)”