foto friday

celebrating the conclusion of another summer and baseball season
Friday night at the ball park

trey asks a question
Birthday party

bonus, “i can’t look”
Birthday party

while we are on the topic

while we are on the topic of the babies, here is Randy Alcorn’s recent post about why is voting for 98% pro life McCain rather than 100% pro-abortion Obama.

I’ve also been angrily challenged as to why I don’t care about other needy and dying children, only the unborn. Actually, all the royalties from all of my books go to help the needy, including feeding and clothing and relieving the suffering of children all over the world. We give to prolife work, but far more to famine relief and development. By God’s grace, over four million dollars has been distributed for people-helping causes in the last number of years, much of it to children.

It’s curious that because I’m expressing concern about unborn children, people assume I don’t care about children who are already born. I do. But neither of the two major presidential candidates is advocating the legalized killing of already born children. However, one is advocating the legalized killing of unborn children. Since it is already illegal to kill the born, I’m talking about the rights and needs of the unborn.

and further down an analogy/illustration:

However, in an imperfect world I do think there’s a difference between being completely wrong about abortion, like Giuliani, and mostly right but partly wrong about abortion, like John McCain. Nanci and I have wrestled with this, and just as we agreed in the past to vote for a third party candidate, in this case we agreed, though reluctantly, to vote for McCain in light of the only electable alternative.

Let me try an analogy to show you why. Suppose in the town you live in, there’s a lake where, for the last thirty-five years, children have been taken by parents to be drowned. Say that every day 100 children are brought to this lake.

As a town citizen, you are presented with two candidates for mayor. (You can vote for a third party, but clearly one of these two candidates will be elected.) One candidate publicly states that he believes the right thing is that the children not be brought to that lake. They should be allowed to live, except the one or two conceived by rape. By longstanding town law the 100 daily drownings are all legal, and the mayor can’t change the law. However, this mayoral candidate has publicly stated that the law should be changed, and he hopes to appoint judges who help that happen, so that 98 or 99 of the 100 children would live rather than die.

Now, the deaths of those one or two children conceived by rape should rightly disturb you. And if until now zero children had been killed at the lake, it would be evil to vote for a man willing for one or two to be legally drowned. But for thirty-five years, 100 children have been killed there each day. This man is trying to move the town in the right direction, even though he has stopped just short of a 100% reversal. No additional children will be killed if his position were in place, because those one or two children would have been killed anyway under existing law. But 98 or 99 a day would be rescued from the death they will face if his position isn’t put in place.

and don’t miss this bit on “winning.”

One of the commenters on my last blog said, “God didn’t call us to win. He called us to do what is right.” Well, to me this has never been about us winning. I don’t even know who us is. To me, it’s certainly not about Republicans winning, or John McCain winning. My concern is whether unborn babies will be protected. Sure, I want to be able to sleep at night because I did the right thing. But I also want millions of babies to sleep (or cry) at night, because my vote actually helped them live. That, I believe, is the right thing for me to do—not to vote for an ideal unelectable candidate, but to do what I can to help children live even if I have to vote for a flawed candidate to do so.

The whole thing is very long, but very well written and argued with photos. Please take some time and go read it.

Alcorn has been writing very good long pieces on this topic since October 16. Here they are:

Not Cool: Obama’s ProAbortion Stance and Christians enabling him.

Abortion Reduction by the Freedom of Choice Act?

I’m not Voting for a Man, I’m Voting for Generations of Children and their Right to Live

Al Mohler on the babies

here is Al Mohler’s take on the babies. Go read all of it.

I can understand the fatigue and the sense of frustration. On the other hand, we have witnessed a growing respect for life as ultrasound technologies have opened the womb to view. We have seen the Supreme Court allow that some abortion procedures can be ruled outside the law. We see pro-life convictions growing among the young. This is a moral conflict that might take a century or more to run its course.

I can understand the desire to reset the equation, to transcend the tired divisions. I can even understand the desire to move on, to go on to other issues of great and grave concern. I can sense excitement about a candidate who represents generational hope, and whose election could do so much to heal racial lines of division.

But I just cannot get past one crucial, irreducible, and central issue — the moral status of those unborn lives. They are not mine to negotiate. If abortion were a matter of concern for anything less than this, I would gladly negotiate. But abortion is a matter of life and death, and how can we negotiate with death? What moral sense does it make to settle for death as “safe, legal, and rare?” How safe? How rare?

Our considerations of these questions will reveal what we really think of those millions of unborn lives. Do we consider the battle for their lives permanently lost?

Those fighting for the abolition of slavery pressed on against obstacles and set backs worse than these because, after all, these were human lives they were defending. What if they had listened to those who, after Dred Scott and the Missouri Compromise, said that the battle was “permanently” lost? What if they had been intimidated by critics accusing them of “single-issue” voting?

If every single fetus is an unborn child made in the image of God, there is no moral justification for settling for a vague hope of some reduction in the number of fetal homicides. If the abortion fight is “permanently lost,” it will be lost first among those who claim to be defenders of life — those who tell us that the argument is merely changing.

emphasis added.

Hat tip to Vitamin Z.

Tim Keller

Tim Keller has a new book out called The Prodigal God.

he explains what it is and why he wrote it here. a sample:

What’s the book about? It’s about being ‘prodigal.’ The word ‘prodigal’ is an English word that means recklessly extravagant, spending to the point of poverty. The dictionaries tell us that the word can be understood in a more negative or a more positive sense. The more positive meaning is to be lavishly and sacrificially abundant in giving. The more negative sense is to be wasteful and irresponsible in one’s spending. (Some people think prodigal means ‘wayward,’ but there is no dictionary that indicates that the word means ‘immoral.’) The negative sense obviously applies to the actions of the younger brother in the Luke 15 parable. But is there any sense in which God can be called ‘prodigal’? I think so.

go read the rest. Good stuff. and it looks like another (short) book is on my list.

hat tip to Vitamin Z

New Bible?

Ligonier Ministries is celebrating Reformation Week by giving away a Reformation Study Bible with a donation of any amount. Hurry, offer ends on October 31.

I have one of these Bibles and it is an excellent resource.

hat tip to the Foolish Galatian.

Christless Christianity

I am going to read this book in the near future.

Challies has reviewed Christless Christianity by Michael Horton and the review is awesome.

Take a little time and go read the whole review. here is a bit from the beginning but the whole thing is a must read:

In Christless Christianity Michael Horton argues that such denial of Christ may not be too far from home. More and more evangelical churches, he says, are now essentially Christless. “Aside from the packaging, there is nothing that cannot be found in most churches today that could not be satisfied by any number of secular programs and self-help groups.” Many churches have tossed out Christ and continue on without him, sometimes not even realizing that he has been lost along the way.

This is not to say that American evangelicalism has already reached a point of no return or that every church has rejected Christ. “I am not arguing in this book that we have arrived at Christless Christianity,” says Horton, “but that we are well on our way. … My concern is that we are getting dangerously close to the place in everyday American church life where the Bible is mined for ‘relevant’ quotes but is largely irrelevant on its own terms; God is used as a personal resource rather than known, worshiped and trusted; Jesus Christ is a coach with a good game plan for our victory rather than a Savior who has already achieved it for us; salvation is more a matter of having our best life now than being saved from God’s judgment by God himself; and the Holy Spirit is an electrical outlet we can plug into for the power we need to be all that we can be.” Jesus has become supplemental instead of instrumental to the church. As the church has focused on “deeds, not creeds” she has become increasingly irrelevant and unfaithful. Church has become just another area in which Americans can live out the American dream. “In my view, we are living out our creed, but that creed is closer to the American Dream than it is to the Christian faith. The claim I am laying out in this book is that the most dominant form of Christianity today reflects ‘a zeal for God’ that is nevertheless without knowledge–particularly, as Paul himself specifies, the knowledge of God’s justification of the wicked by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone, apart from works.”

this is the day that the Lord hath made

I will rejoice and be glad in it.

Walking out of Bible study this morning trying to get a reflection picture and boy did God give me one!

serendipity strikes again

serendipity strikes again