The Doctor: Unity Isn’t Built, It’s Maintained

The unity that the apostle speaks of is a unity that can never be produced by human beings – never!  ‘So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members of one another.’  This, again, is something that follows of necessity from the illustration of the body.  As we have seen, the human body starts with one cell, which becomes impregnated and grows and develops.  The proliferations come out and form neck and arms and feet and trunk and so on.  And it is exactly the same with the church.  This is something supernatural; it is miraculous; it is the divine ‘something’.  And so the illustration proves to us that men and women can never produce this unity, and, of course, the Bible never exhorts us to.  What Paul does exhort us to do, is to maintain the unity – which is entirely different.  – D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Romans Vol. 12, pp. 188-189

Made For Greatness, But Not Our Own

Here is the ad I have referenced a few times and asked for people to hunt for in magizines.  Now I at least have a digital copy thanks to Dane Ortlund for guest posting it on Justin Taylor’s blog.  I would still like a paper copy if you happen to find one.

From page 5 of September 2007 issue of Backpacker; ad referenced by John Piper in a 2008 ETS talk in Providence, Rhode Island.

The Doctor: When Living the “Christian Life” is Heretical

The Christian gospel is unique.  It tells us: Be what you are; realize what you are; and proceed to show that you are what you are.  Nowhere else in the world do we find such a message.  And as we have seen, that is why we must always realize that no one can live the Christian life without being regenerate.  Indeed, to tell anybody who is not a Christian to life the Christian life in any part or form is to teach heresy.  It is the Pelagian heresy.  Pelagius thought that you simply had to teach people the principles of Christian living for them to carry them out.  That is false teaching which has been condemned, and always should be condemned by the Christian church.  – D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Romans Vol. 12, p. 113

The Doctor: Christians are not Christmas Trees

In other words, in Christianity it is always the inward state that matters, the spirit of the mind, this transformation, this shining forth of the inner being.  The conduct of Christian men and women is not something that they add on to their lives, it is not like putting on a suit.  As we have seen it is the outward expression of something that is within.  This can be illustrated by something which we see at Christmastime.  Before Christmas, people buy their Christmas trees and on the branches they often hang silver and gold apples and pears.  They tie this artificial fruit on to the tree with thin pieces of string or wire.  The artificial is that which is put on the tree.  When you go into an orchard you also see apples and pears, but they are real, and have grown from the inner life of the tree – now that is Christianity.  – D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, Romans Vol. 12, pp. 109-110

[Review] Words from the Fire

Readability:  1

Length: 195 pgs

Author:  Albert Mohler

Words from the Fire is an excellent little book for the Christian on the Ten Commandments.  Each commandment is clearly taught, masterly illustrated, proper studied in its context, and then examined and applied in light of Christ.  Here is a book for the whole of you, to inform your mind, convict your heart, and direct your will.

[W]e do not celebrate a lawless grace any more than looking to the Old Testament we should see a graceless law.  There is grace in the law.  Israel, in hearing the Word of the Lord and receiving these words received grace!  And if we do not understand that, we slander both the Old Testament and the God who spoke to Israel at Horeb.

The prevailing secular mind-set says that law is simply a product of human experience codified in legislative form.  It is just how we learned to live with each other.  There is no absolute or transcendent ought.  There is merely a phenomenological is

Adultery begins a breakdown of order that threatens the entire society, for how can we trust each other if we cannot trust our most intimate commitments?  …Marriage is the little universe upon which every other human relation depends.

The big lie is that we are what we own, or we can be what we want to own, what we wear, or what we drive.  What do we do when we get a new car?  We have got to show it to someone, almost like there is no fun to be had if nobody is around to covet it.  We provide a drive-by opportunity to covet.