Does one’s perception of truth affect the way they hear statements like; the Bible is true, or Jesus said, “I am the way the truth and the life”?

If someone hears something different than what we said, becuase of the way they interpret certain buzzwords, should a pastor/communicator change how he preached/communicates?
– Did Jesus?
– Did Paul?

If the law was meant to convict us of our sin, and bring death, then how can we delight in it?

Does a person that comes from a legalistic background have a better understanding of grace, or does this actually have a negative impact on their understanding of grace?

Is the default religion of our heart legalism?

Is the default religion of our heart idolatry?

If the default religion of our hearts is not worshiping God, then why are we surprised when we sin?

If someone doesn’t beleive in absolute truth is it okay for me to kick their dog, or to steal their cheeseburger?

If we are to worship God in Spirit and in truth, what role does does one’s perspective of truth play in their ability to worship God?

How authoritative is the Bible to you? No, really.

If the Bible were your absolute authority, how would this week look different than last week?

How different is the Old Testament than the New Testament?
– Is it Indiana Jones Trilogy type diffferent
– Is it Matrix trilogy type different?
– Is it progressive?

What role does the end of the Bible play in reading the Bible (new heavens and new earth)?

What role does the beginning of the Bible play in reading the Bible (creation/fall)?

What role does the atonement play in reading the Bible?

If all Jesus had to do was die a perfect death then why did he live for 33 years, and not sacrificed as an infant?


fridge/grill slash Ipod/Shelf

In the Fridge

Redhook India Pale Ale (IPA)

This is my third favorite IPA (#1 Mongoose IPA, Hales Ales – Seattle, WA; #2 Bridgeport IPA, Bridgeport Brewery – Somewhere in Oregon), although it is the best IPA I can find in Vegas (#2 Thunderhead IPA, Pyramid Brewing – Seattle, WA). Nice and hoppy with a phenomenal aftertaste. While it is a pale ale, it is not the best beer for 100 degree days due to the fact that maximum flavor is achieved after sitting out for about 15-20 minutes. The better a beer is, the better it tastes when warmer. I’m not saying a beer shouldn’t be cold, I’m simply working off a premise all beer snobs are well aware of: lighter beers are best ice cold because they lack substantial flavor. That being said, while the IPA is great, I’m drinking it inside, not on the porch. And since we have a great new porch, my second beer is the …

Pryamid Curve Ball

No beer says spring and summer like Pryamid’s Curve Ball. This Kölsch style beer perfectly exemplifies spring and summer. Named after a summer staple (baseball) this is the perfect beer for sitting out on the porch with a couple buddies talking about sports, theology, or anything for that matter. I cannot say enough for this beer except: ITS NOT IN MY FRIDGE. Somehow every liquor store within a 20 mile radius hates me and my buddy Derek as when went on a journey to find curve ball’s last week. Such a great spread that most Vegas liquor store have (all the locals will understand my sarcasm here) they have neglected this great beer. Although, Lee’s did have Butt Monkey. Hey Ryan, if only they had Ass Goblin.

Longhammer IPA (by Red Hook)

Can you believe that Red Hook came out with a second IPA? Neither could I becuase they packaged it completely different. I actually passed this up at the store a couple times and would have missed it completely had not my buddy Derek bought it for me as a bartering trade for some stuff he took home from our yard sale last weekend. This is one of the smoothest IPA’s I have ever tasted, which depending on how big of a hop-head you are, is either a good or bad thing. I would say this to those of you who have not had a good IPA experience: go buy a sixer of Longhammer IPA, it will change your perspective.

NOTE: I wrote all that down before I read this quote by a concerned drinker, and someone in the know.

pirateale (1 month ago)

i was very disappointed in this new Red Hook IPA, then i was delt another blow to find out the “long hammer” replaced their original IPA. Altho the long hammer is far more palatable for average beer drinkers, hop heads beware, low IBUs simplistic hop and malt profiles overall a light session ale. this is a very small beer

michaelyblam (1 month ago)
According to Redhook – the original IPA and the Long Hammer is one of the same beer. There’s no difference except the name.

Alright, I’m a moron, onto the grill (wait I’ve been moving and haven’t had time to grill). Well then how about a quick shelf/ipod

On the Shelf

Overcoming Sin and Temptation by John Owen

Everything Justin Taylor and John Piper say about Owen is true. He’s amazing. One concept he has helped drive home to me which has had a tremendous affect on my walk with God and my preaching is the idea that sin comes from inside us, not from out in the world. That might seem like a simple/stupid point, but slide down that rabbit hole with your own soul and see how deep it goes.

Keller’s Gospel Class PDF’s

All that gospel saturated, foundational stuff you come to love by Keller, but given in a 200+ page leader’s guide, and 80+ page small group format. Just great to meditate on. If you haven’t read or listened to anything by Keller click on our links and get ready to achieve super-Christian status.

Bible passages about the Word of God

For the next 5-7 days I am going to be flushing out some thoughts on how we receive the word of God, and how we perceive his grace. Whether we like it or not most of us view life through a postmodern hermanuetic (the meaning of the author is in our interpretation not in the authors intent. For further study of the postmodern hermanuetic and God’s Word, read this great book), and that deeply affects the way we take in the scriptures as well as they way we perceive God’s grace. Should be good times.

On the ipod

Since my ipod’s on the fritz and I got scolded by one of the eight people in my church for listening to “secular” music, this will be brief.

Bloc Party, Bloc Party, and Bloc Party (I freaking love bloc party)

As always, feel free to write what’s in/on your fridge/grill or shelf/ipod. Although no one ever does.


please view and respond

Been way too busy to write anything substantial, so like my buddy Jake, I am throwing out a video instead. This is long, but it is amazing. Kind of goes along with the Paris Hilton post I wrote last week. Please respond with comments as to what you think.

Thanks to Bob Hyatt for the video.

This makes up for the whole Kirk Cameron thing. Hitchens vs. Wilson

For those of you who have not been following the debate between Hitchens and Wilson you must repent and go and read them right now.  Hitchens is the latest to capitalize on the evangelistic atheist fad and write a nasty book with old arguments to market to the American people.  Hitchens is no intellectual slouch either and his book, God Is Not Great is actually written very well (I read most of it yesterday at Tattered Cover) but it just does not say anything new.  It follows in the footsteps of Dawkins, and Harris’ books which are filled with moral claims about the evils of Christianity but provide us no basis for the making of these claims.  Even if I am to ascribe to the atheist view I would then have a hard time authoritatively saying that religion is universally bad.  You may be able to say that you personally believe religion to be worthless and bad, but you can not make a binding moral claim that others should abide by, because you believe there is no authority greater than self.  The debate between Hitchens and Wilson is the best engagement I have seen from an apologetic front in quite some time.  Take some time to read through these and be encouraged that once again it is not usually the intellectual and truth problems that lead people away from the gospel but the hardness of their heart (Rom. 1).

Spurgeon on Preaching

“The honest preacher calls a sin a sin,
and a spade a spade, and says to men, “You are ruining yourselves; while
you reject Christ you are living on the borders of hell, and ere long you will
be lost to all eternity. There shall be no mincing the matter, you must
escape from the wrath to come by faith in Jesus, or be driven for ever from
God’s presence, and from all hope of joy.” The preacher must make his
sermons cut. He is not to file off the edge of his scythe for fear it should
hurt somebody. No, my hearers, we mean to hurt you; our sickle is made
on purpose to cut. The gospel is intended to wound the conscience, and to
go right through the heart, with the design of separating the soul from sin
and self, as the corn is divided from the soil. Our object is to cut the sinner
right down, for all the comeliness of the flesh must be slain, all his glory, all
his excellence must be withered, and the man must be as one dead ere he
can be saved. Ministers who do not aim to cut deep are not worth their
salt. God never sent the man who never troubles men’s consciences. Such
a man may be an ass treading down the corn, but a reaper he certainly is
not. We want faithful ministers; pray God to send them. Ask him to give us
men who will preach the whole truth, who will not be afraid of certain
humbling doctrines, but will bring out, for instance, the doctrine of
election, and not be ashamed of it, who will tell men that salvation is of the
Lord, and will not go about to please them by letting them have a finger in
salvation, as though they were to share in the glory of it. Oh for laborers
who can use sharp cutting sickles upon ungodly hearts!”

From Spurgeon’s commentary on Matthew 9:37-10:1


Fun Friday

From Jack Bauer to Lydia of Purple, here is a plethora of internet fun:


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Hey think this through before you scoff

I was driving home from seminary today and I was listening to FM radio. I do not normally do it, since most of FM radio is wacky DJ’s and lots of car stereo commericals. I had heard of a new hip-hop & RB station in the area that played decent music so I figured I would give it a try, especially since I grew up a hip-hop music fan and have been mourning the death of good hip-hop for a couple of years now. It is funny to note that good rap music and the decline of the NBA seemed to happen at the same time, maybe we can blame David Stern for both. Anyway, as I was listening to the station they were doing like an old school lunch hour and here are some of the songs they played and I actually found myself enjoying.

Montel Jordon“This is how we do it.”

Now if you had a pulse during the time this song came out you knew this song. It was like the Billy Ray Cyrus “Achy Breaky Heart” of the RB world. It played on MTV every ten minutes and it was just a great song to listen to. Not to mention I remember that this guy was like 6’9 and in the video he was trying to do a bump and grind thing with girl that was like 5’5 this made for great comedy, but gave hope to me at the time as a white kid who was terrified of dancing with a girl. This is a song that when I hear it on the oldies station thirty years from now it will immediately bring to mind all sorts of memories and thoughts of where I was in life (puberty).

Hammer“We got to pray”

Hell after hearing this song I could not help but remember what a HUGE star this guy was. I mean he wore pants straight out of Aladdin and did this shuffle thing and people went crazy. For awhile he challenged Michael Jackson for the label of “King of Pop.” As I heard this song I realized that Hammer was the nineties version of Kanye West, without all the profanity. But think about it he made praying/Jesus cool for about 22 seconds, and both were incredible self promoters. The only difference is that Kanye seems to be much smarter. Kanye is a great businessman and does not waste his money on gold urinals and employing everyone he went to Jr. High with. The point of all this is that I am anxiously awaiting the next decades version of the “Kanye-Hammer.”

Kris Kross “Jump Jump”

Oh c’mon you know you know them!! Their fifteen minutes of fame were huge. I still have their hook swimming around in my head fifteen years later. I even remember being in the fifth grade and convincing this kid in my class named Eddie, to wear his pants to school backward one day. The amazing thins is he did it. Except his pants were Wranglers and really tight so he ended up just looking ridiculous. This is further proof that elementary school is a horrible time in life, and we should all thank Jesus that we made it through. As I heard this song in my car I could not help but sing along and sing the chorus. I even wanted to Jump Jump! When I got home I got on itunes and looked up what other classics this guys made and I found quite possibly the greatest elementary school kid anthem song ever, “I Missed the Bus.” If you do not know about this song, go right now and find a way to listen to it. I mean just look at this album cover.

While I am partly ashamed to write this post I realize that we should not be ashamed of our past, and growing up all of these songs/artists were quite meaningful to me. I listened to their music, took some fashion ques from them, and even took dancing tips. And while I look back and shake my head at how embarrassing all of this is, I am even more saddened that the currents state of hip hop makes Montel, Kris Kross, and Hammer look like the golden age.