Theology Thursday: Covenant Theology


So today’s Theology Thursday is about Convant Theology.  And  Amy Mantravadi has given a series of posts about what Covenant Theology is that is part of an on going series.  Here’s the first few.

Old Covenant vs New Covenant: New Covenant Described

Old Covenant vs New Covenant: Membership

Old Covenant vs New Covenant: Types and Shadows

Old Covenant vs New Covenant: Mediation

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Earworm Wednesday: I want to know what love is ~ Amason


Yes you may blame Carl Truman, Aimee Byrd, and Todd Pruitt aka the hosts of Mortification of Spin for this week’s earworm.  On the latest podcast they ended it with this song.  So instead of giving you an aging pop princess’ cover of the song I found an obscure Swedish band with an outré video.

Movie Review: Thor Ragnarok.


Producer: Kevin Feige
Director: Taika Waititi
Writers:Eric Pearson,Craig Kyle,Christopher Yost
Cast: Chris Hemsworth,Tom Hiddleston,Cate Blanchett,Idris Elba,Jeff Goldblum,Tessa Thompson,Karl Urban,Mark Ruffalo,Anthony Hopkins

Plot:  Thor has been scouring the nine realms trying to locate infinity stones having no luck.  He has been captured by the fire demon Surtur who reveals to Thor the prophecy of Ragnarok where Surtur will destroy Asgard by placing his crown into Odin’s eternal flame.  Surtur also reveals that Odin is no longer in Asgard.  Thor escapes taking Surtur’s crown with him in an effort to prevent the Ragnarok prophecy from coming true.

When Thor returns to Asgard he finds Loki, who everyone thought had died, pretending to be Odin.  Thor forces Loki to take him to Odin.  When they arrive on Earth, because why would Loki hide him any where else, Dr. Strange snatches both of the Asgardians and after he questions Thor about why they are on Earth he sends both Loki and Thor to where Odin is.  Once they arrive Odin reveals that he is dying and that his daughter, Hela, whom he has kept imprisoned will be released and that she will destroy the nine realms.  

And as Odin dies Hela is released she destroys Thor’s hammer, and chases Thor and Loki as they run back to Asgard she throws both off Bifröst Bridge to die in space.  Once she arrives at Asgard she kills the warriors three and enslaves the population by ressurecting the dead warriors that once followed her along with Fenris the giant wolf she rode into battle.

Thor has not perished in space but has tumbled through a wormhole to land in a junkyard planet where he is captured by a drunken scrapper who takes him to become a gladiator in the Grandmaster’s games.  There he finds that the champion of the games is none other than the Hulk and that Loki has been there weeks before he arrived.  

And go see the movie if you want to know how it ends.  

This was a very enjoyable movie much better than the second movie, there was quite a bit of humor and slapstick mostly with Thor and Loki.  The only complaint that I heard from a person who also watched it was that it lacked emotional depth.  After all Thor had just lost both his father and the source of his power and there didn’t seem to be hardly anything in the movie that examined this aspect.  And I think that is a valid point.  

Yet despite that most would say that this is an enjoyable movie and I would agree with that evaluation.  I don’t know that I would see it twice but I definitely would spend a matinee price to see it.

Lots of violence, so keep that in mind, and Hulk naked, rear view which really didn’t need to be there.  I am giving this three stars out of five.

Catechism


What is the church?


    God chooses and preserves for himself a community elected for eternal life and united by faith,
    who love, follow, learn from, and worship God together. God sends out this community to proclaim the gospel and prefigure Christ’s kingdom by the quality of their life together and their love for one another.

    2 Thessalonians 2:13

    But we ought always to give thanks to God for you, brothers beloved by the Lord, because God chose you as the firstfruits to be saved, through sanctification by the Spirit and belief in the truth.

    Blog Update


    Still feeling that over stuffed feeling that comes with good food and two slices of pie.  So as I nod off to slumber land along with my pal Windsor McCay see you next week.  

    Movie Review: The Foriegner


    Director: Martin Campbell
    Producers: Jackie Chan, Wayne Marc Godfrey, D. Scott Lumpkin, Jamie Marshall, Arthur M. Sarkissian
    Writer: David Marconi
    Based on The Chinaman by Stephen Leather
    Cast: Jackie Chan, Pierce Brosnan, Ray Fearon, Rory Fleck-Byrne, Stephen Hogan, Michael McElhatton, Katie Leung, Simon Kunz, Dermot Crowley

    Plot: Jackie Chan plays Ngoc Minh Quan an elderly (60 year old) business man who while taking his teenage daughter, the only family left to him, to a dress shop in London looks in horror as her life is taken away from him by an IRA terrorist bomb.   Determined to get justice for his daughter he bothers the police every day even offering them money if they will only get the men responsible.  Rebuffed by the police his attention becomes focused on an Irish Deputy Minister Liam Hennessy, played by Pierce Brosnan, who boasts of his supposedly former ties to the IRA, and at the same time condemns the bombing.  Quan confronts Hennessy in his office insisting that he knows who did the bombing, Hennessy denies it and has Quan escorted out of his office.  Quan leave, but as he leaves he created a bomb out of household chemicals and plants it in the bathroom of Hennessy’s office.  It exploded harming no one but shaking up Hennessy.

    This is where we learn that Quan was a former special forces commando and he is going to put all his training to work in order to get Hennessy to tell him who the terrorists are and where they are.  What follows is a cat and mouse game where Quan slowly but surely shows Hennessy that he can’t be stopped.

    This is the first serious movie that I have seen Jackie Chan in as typically there is a bit of humor in his various martial arts movies.  Not in this one.  He plays a man with nothing left to lose, a man whose reason for living has been replaced by revenge and he will go to any extreme to achieve it.  

    Also Jackie Chan plays it realistic in this regarding the fighting scenes.  He isn’t slugging it out and winning against fitter and younger men.  Instead he uses cunning and stealth because he knows that is what would work. 

    Both Chan and Brosnan play well against each other.  And I can’t say which was the better actor in this both brought their A game to the film.  If you get a chance to see this definitely do so I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

    This is rated R and so it isn’t appropriate for the younger audience.  Definitely adults.  I give this four stars out of five. 

    Catechism


    Does the Lord’s Supper add anything to Christ’s atoning work?

      No, Christ died once for all. The Lord’s Supper is a covenant meal celebrating Christ’s atoning work; as it is also a means of strengthening our faith as we look to him, and a foretaste of the future feast. But those who take part with unrepentant hearts eat and drink judgment on themselves.

      1 Peter 3:18

      For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God

      Theology Thursday: Dr. James White’s Four Keys to effective debating.


      Today’s Theology Thursday comes from The Cripplegate’s Clint Archer.  He had the chance to interview Dr. James White and ask him how to effectively debate an opponent.

      1Seek to be consistent. (Use equal scales)

      This is mandatory in a serious debate: you can’t use unequal scales. You need to apply the same level of respect and understanding of how they employ their source material as you would want them to apply to how you employ yours.

      Rookie debaters attack aspects of their opponent’s system that they would dismiss with an exasperated eye roll if the favor were returned. He offered a smattering of examples. Here’s some of his riff on this point, transcribed from a recording and cleaned up a bit…

      A lot of arguments used against Islam or Mormonism will involve picking on their writings…..eg the Book of Mormon says Jesus was born in Jerusalem and apologists will say “see, Joseph Smith did not know what he was talking about.” But when we defend the Old Testament we often point out that that there are places where the author has used a very specific geographic term referring to a wider region. We defend against these alleged errors using that methodology—so we must be consistent and allow the Mormon the same methodology; i.e. they would say that Bethlehem is very close to Jerusalem, in the same general area.
      There are a lot of arguments that I would not use when attacking the Qur’an because I realize that when defending the Old Testament I am going to have to utilize very similar responses from what I would expect from a Muslim. So we need to be very careful.
      A lot of people attack Joseph Smith’s false prophesies – and there are false prophecies – but Mormons allege that there are false prophecies in the Old Testament too. So your argument saying that Joseph Smith was giving a false prophecy might boomerang and they will say that Jonah was giving a false prophecy, or Ezekiel when prophesying against Tyre (referring to Ezekiel 26:1-14).
      Most Christian apologists are better at attacking the other side rather than defending the best arguments made against Christianity.

      2.   Strive for accuracy in representation of the other side (use original source material)



      How much attention would you pay to a debater who learned what they know about your faith from watching a YouTube video posted by an “ex-Christian” who “suddenly realized” the Bible was full of contradictions and that his church leaders didn’t have answers? Probably zero.

      You need to examine and familiarize yourself with your opponent’s original source material. When you explain their view on an issue, they should nod in agreement with everything you are saying before you explain why you disagree. If they don’t believe you understand their position or if they think you have misrepresented their beliefs, they will dismiss any argument you proffer against the faulty position you have presented.
      So, when you engage a Mormon or a Jehovah’s Witness or a Muslim, make sure you have read Joseph Smith, C. T. Russel, or the Qur’an.

      It is “Absolutely vitally important to use original sources, to know their version.”

      Some people disagree with this point because they say you are exposing yourself to false teaching. But you know what: Paul quoted from Aratus the Greek philosopher and when he wrote Colossians he uses the very language of the proto-gnostics and the Docetists. The writers knew that those people believed and actively refuted them. We have nothing to fear, true Christianity has nothing spiritually to fear from Islam.

      Jot down chapter and verse to show your counterpart that you have taken the time to actually read and understand what they actually believe. Interact with that. Do not erect straw men and throw fallacious darts at them. You will only make yourself feel superior while getting no closer to winning the argument or the soul for Christ.

      3.  Show love for your opponent. (Win souls not just arguments)

      Speaking of winning, you need to decide if your goal is merely to win an argument or to win a soul.
      Sometimes those two go together. By convincing them of what the Scriptures actually say, you win the person over to the truth by winning the argument. But sometimes your words might be true, while your attitude belies your lack of concern for the person you are debating and the people who hold their view.

      Apologetics – especially electronic apologetics – is a very dangerous skill because it allows you to say things to other people you would never say to their face. It allows you to sit there and think that you are glorifying God when the reality is that you are just trying to get your sword bloody – you don’t care what damage you do in the process.  If you don’t love the people you are dealing with, if you don’t really believe that you are going to be praying for them, if you wouldn’t reach out to them in a meaningful fashion, then don’t even do it. You’ll end up doing more damage than anything else.

      The easiest way to show love to a person is to actually love them. Jesus said to do this, so if you don’t you are being a poor debater and a bad Christian at the same time.

      4.  Stay in the context of a local church.

      Apologetics is not a balanced field. You spend your time immersed in error. If you are doing that divorced from a ministry in the local church you are missing the point of your gifts, you are stunting your own spiritual growth, and you are neglecting your responsibility to the local church in favor of the Universal Church.

      I found this to be the most surprising and encouraging of Dr. White’s insights. He is an elder at his church, teaches a Bible study (from the Bible, not the Book of Mormon), and ministers alongside Christians. His apologetics and debating is his career, not his only ministry.

      Apologetics must be done within the context of the church. The vast majority of apologists I know are not churchmen. They go from church to church each weekend and give their presentations but they themselves are not churchmen.
      Apologetics is not a balanced Christian ministry, you’re always in defense mode. I jokingly tell my audience – I listen to the heretics so you don’t have to – and there is an element of truth in that. And that is not good in the long run if that is all you do. So if you are a churchman you will be forced to have balance.

      This is just the main points of the article to read the entire article go here: The Cripplegate