Letters With a Mind of Their Own

Show Outline with Links

First, the Piper Letters

Important update: John Piper wrote me privately to say (and to say vigorously) that he does not hold to the two assumptions that I attributed to him in Monday’s post. He does not believe that all sins are equal, and he does not believe that any action that provokes a vile response is thereby a vile action. He was kind enough to send a link with regard to the first one. So I am happy to make clear that those two assumptions are plainly rejected by John (when considered in isolation). Unfortunately, we still have our disagreement about his article because (in my view) if you take those two assumptions away, the article loses all of its force. With regard to the first assumption, John’s point was “simply to raise the stakes,” which in the context of his article meant putting Trump’s bluster and bravado on all fours with Biden’s embrace of the culture of death. I still don’t see how that can be done without putting any sin that damns the sinner on the same level with other sins that damn other sinners. And with regard to the second assumption, John wrote, “The last five years bear vivid witness to this infection at almost every level of society.” The assumption comes out here in that all the vitriol we have seen is treated as an emanation from Trump. John and I are continuing to talk, and I will keep you posted.

“One last comment, and this does not apply to John. ”

If his motivation is different from the wannabe cool kids, why is he making the same mistake at the same time? He doesn’t have to tell us not to vote for Trump, but he’s chosen to join a long list of others in doing so right before the election. I believe your assessment of his commitment to truth, but why is it so misguided here?

Brian

Brian, I believe that the reason he is writing now is because Christians need guidance now, and this is what pastors do — provide guidance.

What baffles me is that so many Christians seem to not consider the unrepentant boastfulness, unrepentant vulgarity and unrepentant factiousness to be be sins at all. I do think maybe the unrepentant porneia they’ll grant. To Piper’s list I might add, unrepentant contumely, unrepentant intemperance, unrepentant vindictiveness, and unrepentant dishonesty. It is one thing to choose the lesser of evils, if that’s what you think it is. It is another thing to respond, “Whot? That bothers you?!” when all the above is brought up as an issue. Well, it also bothers me that it does not bother you at all — you being whoever Christians are not bothered at all. This is where I am concerned for the church in America. Leaders we will never follow and movements we will never join are not the real danger to us. If you’ve got a Sunday School classroom full of gossipy old teetotalers the evil of drunkenness is not really what you need to lean into.

John

John, I think this is a fair point, and a fair cop with regard to many. This is part of what I was referring to in last Sunday’s sermon on not putting your trust in princes. Do not put your faith in a man.

Sam Storms weighs in and leans Piper…

Pull quote: “I’m not equipped or wise enough to know which is worse for a nation: an overtly prideful, lustful, vulgar, profane Narcissist, or a quiet and gentlemanly advocate of abortion, homosexuality, who would suppress religious liberties and promote socialist economic policies.”

Is it proud or blind of me to feel like I am wise enough to know unequivocally which is worse for the nation? Sigh.

Joe

Joe, no, I don’t think it is proud or blind.

The two assumptions of Piper that you challenged are spot on with respect to his theological argument, but before he even gets there his foundational assumption is that one side is characterized by “the sins of unrepentant sexual immorality (porneia), unrepentant boastfulness (alazoneia), unrepentant vulgarity (aischrologia), unrepentant factiousness (dichostasiai),” while the other side is characterized by “policies that endorse baby-killing, sex-switching, freedom-limiting, and socialistic overreach.” Why the precise Greek language for one side and not the other? Piper says, “The reason I put those Greek words in parentheses is to give a graphic reminder that these are sins mentioned in the New Testament. To be more specific, they are sins that destroy people. They are not just deadly. They are deadly forever. They lead to eternal destruction (2 Thessalonians 1:9).” But Piper later acknowledges “Where does the wickedness of defending child-killing come from? It comes from hearts of self-absorbed arrogance and boasting (James 4:1–2). It comes from hearts that are insubordinate to God.” Would this not be true of sex-switching, freedom-limiting, and socialistic overreach as well? And if I’m not mistaken, Biden has also been at least accused in the past of sexual immorality, vulgarity, and factiousness, not to mention the questions regarding his son’s “business activities” that the press is so reluctant to ask. So wouldn’t it be more accurate to say that both candidates carry significant baggage with respect to personal character, but only one promotes policies that endorse baby-killing, sex-switching, freedom-limiting, and socialistic overreach?

Moreover, why is only one assumed to be unrepentant? No one would deny that Trump is guilty of such sins in the past but isn’t whether or not he is repentant between him and the Lord? If it is argued that the behavior is ongoing, then Trump is hardly alone among American politicians, present and past. And is it not undeniable that the left is unrepentant, even celebrating baby-killing, sex-switching, freedom-limiting, and socialistic overreach?

But my biggest issue with Piper’s article is that despite his insistence that he does not intend to dictate how anyone else should vote, using words like “baffled,” “mistake,” “communicate falsehood,” “justifications,” “bewildering,” “naive,” and “calculus” to describe other perspectives is uncharitable at best. I don’t know any other Evangelical Christian who doesn’t acknowledge the concerns raised by Piper and others. They do not deny that they are voting for the lesser of two evils, just as they have often done in the past. They do not condemn those who vote for a third-party or write-in a candidate, but they would echo Piper’s words right back to him: “You must act on what you see. I can’t see it.” Unfortunately, he undermines his own words by characterizing his choice as standing for “Christ-exalting faith, hope, and love,” while implying that those who choose differently are supporting a “pathway to cultural corruption and eternal ruin.” If as Piper concludes that he will explain his allegiance to Jesus to his unbelieving neighbor and show him how abortion and arrogance can be forgiven because of Christ, should not the same grace be extended to his believing brothers and sisters who make a choice to vote differently based on their conscience?

JD

JD, thanks.

RE: John Piper, Me, and the Cool Shame Election

Yes. John’s article was disappointing, to say the least. I will cede for the moment your contention he cares about the truth. I’ve listened to, read, and viewed a good deal of his teaching, and so I was of the opinion he is a rational, logical man. But his subject article called that into question because the notion all sin is equal is clearly unbiblical.

I’ve noticed the idea is most often advanced when trying to soften the severity of homosexuality and related sins. The church, you see, still has a few curmudgeons who think God abhors homosexuality and He deems it to be among the vilest of all sins mankind can do. We really need to rid ourselves of such Neanderthals and realize it is in truth no more dastardly than getting drunk or cursing at the driver who fails to use his blinker. I’m afraid John is using the same device to remain accepted — or avoid attack — by all. In short, I don’t believe for a moment he thinks all sins are equal.

Dave

Dave, right, and see my comments at the top.

What are your thoughts on John Piper’s recent “Polices, Persons, and Paths to Ruin” article?

I sent a friend your article “7 Reasons Why It Is Possible for Christians to Vote for Trump in 2020 Without Getting a Defiled Conscience and/or Losing Their Soul” and he responded with Piper’s article and a counter-argument that we should put more hope in change through people devoting themselves to Christ than in governmental actions.

Sure, Jesus didn’t overthrow the Roman government and get involved in politics as the zealots would have loved. He paid no attention to the current political situation.

But shouldn’t we as Christians should seek to influence government as best we can — after all, our children and grandchildren will live in a world shaped by the governments we elect.

Interested to hear your thoughts.

Caleb

Caleb, I quite agree with your friend about where we should place our hope. We do not trust in princes. But in the meantime, if we are going to vote at all, we need to decide how we are going to do so. I believe it is lawful (and wise) to vote for Trump, and foolish to place my hope there.

Thank you for all you do and write, Mr. Wilson. I shared this post (as well as Dr. White’s response to Piper’s article on The Dividing Line) with a brother who certainly isn’t voting for Biden but isn’t convinced he could vote for Trump either; his response was “do you think Wilson and White would consider it wrong not to vote for Trump?” I said I think you would not consider it wrong, as in sinful, but potentially unwise to not vote for Trump. Care to clear the air? God bless!

Dylan

Dylan, that is correct. I don’t believe Christians who write in a candidate, or who vote third party, are sinning. But I do believe that they are not seeing the situation clearly, and that their actions are unwise.

Dealing With Past Sexual Sin

What advice would you give to young couples, specifically young men, regarding the past sexual sin of their partners? What advice would you give to the heartbreak, jealousy, and anger? Understanding the vertical reconciliation that has been accomplished by the blood of Christ, and thus forgiving these past sins, there still appears to be residual sorrow that is not exactly commensurate with Ephesians 4:23. My girlfriend is regenerate and repentant, and we have both remained sexually pure. I feel as though I have indeed forgiven my girlfriend, but am now crushed and heartbroken — not holding her past sins against her. Is there more to forgiveness? Am I driving a wedge between the person and the aftermath of the sin? Any advice would be helpful. You can synthesize if you need. I am praying for Christ Church, and for all the Saints. I am grateful for your ministry. Thank you.

M

M, thanks for your question, and it is not an uncommon one. If you are to stay in a relationship with this woman, you need to forgive her completely, and you need to then forget it. Jealousy is a godly reaction when a man wants to protect his partner from a present or a future threat. Scripture does not condemn that. But retroactive jealousy is a different thing. You are trying to protect her from her past, and only Christ can do that — and He has done it. If you continue being “sorrowful” around her, then your attempts at retroactive jealousy will simply mean that you are becoming the present threat that she needs protection from. And if you struggle with this, you need to treat every instance of your retroactive jealousy as sin, and confess it as such. If it becomes visible to her, you need to seek her forgiveness as well.

Thanks

Hi my name is Isaiah. I just wanted to let you know you guys are doing a great job so keep it up

Isaiah

Isaiah, thanks very much.

Boy Meets Girl

One of the things I’ve been noticing is how pastors treat people differently, not being able to recognize symptoms from the cause. For example they tell the young men, who want to get married and use their sexual desires in a responsible yet productive manner, but who come off a bit too eager, that they need to surrender their desires to God. Meanwhile, it is assumed that the young eligible women, who first want to pursue an education and career, have thought things through and have fully surrendered their sexual desires to God. There is a deference between people starving, being malnourished, and fasting, that pastors need to understand, otherwise they will continue reading to them from a cookbook, which doesn’t do them any good.

“Alas, men often enough confuse impatience with humble, obedient enthusiasm.” — Soren Kierkegaard, Purity of Heart is to Will One Thing

Justin

Justin, thank you.

The Best I’ve Got

Thank you for your faithfulness to our Lord. Could you direct me to any of your sermons that deal with the second half of Lukes 17?

Appreciate it.

James

James, this is the best I can do. In the menu bar above, go to the About tab, and then click on Blog Post Scripture Index. Type in Luke, and then scroll down to Luke 17. If I have done something, it would be listed there.

A Possible Move

To borrow a phrase of yours, while we have some differences of understanding, my wife and I have recently discovered that we are of the same heart as you up there in Moscow ID “all the way down.” We have recently become convinced through the persuasive power of 2020 that it is clearly the fault of evangelicals that our children are in this sorry state, and that we lost the culture we once had. God is sovereign over salvation, but we have come to realize our collective dereliction of duty as individual parents is the direct human cause for this entire mess our country is in. Through interacting with ministries like yours, the light bulb has gone on for us that the way out from here is to embrace the humbling and wondrous labor of love God has laid upon us to give our children His paedaia. We’ve also become convinced we want to be a part of the movement up there with you all and have a tentative move plan from Texas in roughly 3 years to Moscow area.

One difference we have is that we’re still sold that we as parents should shoulder the responsibility to homeschool our kids during K-12, rather than enroll in a private school. We have a lot to learn so these convictions may change. But do know that we don’t want to forsake a large community for our kids to befriend and learn from their peers and other families. A big question for us is: were we to relocate and join Christ Church, what are your thoughts on a general expectation for the community for homeschool families there? Are there a lot of shared common venues, activities and community life for the homeschoolers and the Logos pupils? Can you share your raw take on how much homeschool kids would be “missing out” from community life, and what the real cost is we should count from foregoing the school while being a part of the community there?

As a corollary question, neither my wife nor I received CCE as kids, which I suspect is the norm. Reviewing the aim of a full CCE, we both feel pretty daunted that our best efforts could achieve the stated outcome when the two of us are the only educators for our kids. Do you have any thoughts around “best effort” home education that shoots for the stars but doesn’t quite cover all that CCE outlines is a “complete” education? Are there serious pitfalls in your view to giving our kids 50% of a solid foundation vs. the trained instructors at Logos for example capable of walking them through 100%? These are questions we’re wrestling with and praying through as we plan the future, so even your off-the-cuff personal opinions will be very appreciated. Thanks for your help!

Patrick

Patrick, this is off-the-cuff, but first, there is a thriving home school community here, and many educational options to choose from. The parents in our community overwhelmingly provide a classical Christian education for the kids here, and use a number of different delivery platforms to do so. Of course I have views on which is the most effective, but everybody gets along well.

Back to Sally

While the point of “Ride, Sally, Ride” being part of the not so distant future as initially told has been well made already, I couldn’t resist finding it uncanny that the Wall Street Journal has quite independently fantasized about blue state secession. Self fulfilling prophecy, perhaps?

“An independent Oregon could use state funds for cannabis production. Schools would remain virtual for as long as the teacher’s unions desire, but in-person education camps would be established for republican dissidents, who would be indoctrinated in critical race theory and forced to pledge allegiance to the Green New Deal and Medicare for all. Guns and police would be banned. Crime victims could be given free draft kombucha and autographed copies of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s memoirs.

“An Oregon untethered from the bourgeois U.S. could become a laboratory for the left’s wildest dreams. Perhaps it would become the Pacific Northwest’s version of Copenhagen, but I doubt it. More likely it would come to resemble Venezuela, without the sunshine, oil, and arepas.”

NS

NS, right. What used to be unthinkable isn’t any more.

May be of interest to you . . .I think RIDE SALLY RIDE is excellent. Maybe not all that futuristic.

Patty

Patty, right. All our sin is running down the canals that have been prepared for it.

A Merch Request

Hello, I love what you all are doing please keep it up.

I’d like to have a Blog and Mablog tshirt, have you made these?

Thanks,

Mike

Mike, certainly worth considering . . .

Back to the Election

Thank you for your work, ministry, and writing. I have learned many things from you and appreciate what you do.

As one of the “fastidious conservatives” who is not planning to vote for Trump this election, I found your arguments in An Evangelical Case for Four More Years helpful and well-articulated, even though I have reached a different conclusion. However, I was wondering if you could clarify the concluding paragraphs in Nine Miles of Bad Road.

You appeal to those refusing to cast the Trump ballot, saying: “once you have voted your conscience . . . you also have to agree not to flee to a red state for refuge. Because if you do, you are fleeing to Trump country. If you didn’t vote for him in the election you most certainly should not vote for him after the election. Right?”

A few observations:

First, I was wondering if there is any reason that red states should now considered “Trump country,” other than the fact that we have had four years of a Republican president with the name. If the red states were red before Trump and will be red after Trump, then it seems an ill-fated name. Furthermore, wouldn’t this argument have still been in play last election when you also voted third party? If there was no hypocrisy in conscience-voting a third party candidate last election, how could logically be altered in 2020?

Second, I could understand pointing out the hypocrisy of voting for Biden, say, and then fleeing to a red state (voting for blue policy while fleeing to red policy is hypocritical), but to tell conservatives who vote for conservative policy without voting for Trump that it is hypocrisy to then move to a conservative state seems inconsistent.

Third, if it is hypocrisy we are worried about, wouldn’t it be far more hypocritical for a Christian to vote against her conscience for a candidate she finds morally repugnant? Whether or not I vote for Trump, the reasoning of my conscience and convictions should dictate my ballot, my conservative values, and where I live. To move to a red state would not be fleeing hypocritically to a place I am unwilling to influence electorally, and I definitely wouldn’t be moving with the motive of wanting to live in “Trump country”, unless of course, he gets reelected, in which case “Trump country” would refer to the entirety of the United States.

Kind regards,

Sydney

Sydney, thanks for the thoughtful questions. The thing I am talking about could be hypocrisy, or it could be (in my view) merely an inconsistency. And perhaps I didn’t explain it very well. The reason this particular question hasn’t arisen in previous elections is that the refugee columns hadn’t started to move, which now they very much have. There is a massive relocation of Americans taking place, and this is prior to the election. So what I meant is this. Compare two red states that you might move to (from California or Illinois, say). One of the states is geographical and one of them is temporal (America, after a 2020 Trump victory). A conservative unwilling to vote for Trump would be willing to move to the former, but not the latter, which I think is inconsistent.

RE: 7 Reasons Why It Is Possible for Christians to Vote for Trump in 2020 Without Getting a Defiled Conscience and/or Losing Their Soul Quick question related to the above referenced blog post in which you stated (and with which I completely agree):

“So for Christians, voting for Biden is out of the question for a host of reasons, but his abortion stance makes it a settled issue. It is not possible to vote for him without voting for a man who actively supports the continued slaughter of the unborn. It is not possible to support Biden and be right with God.”

So how about a crazy election day 2040 gaming simulation: all the stakes are the same as today’s election; we’re faced with a choice between this way and that way . . . but both ways support the killing of the unborn. The Republican candidate is pro-abortion.

Unfortunately, this doesn’t seem like such an inconceivable scenario. As you mentioned earlier in the post, our options are often “a choice between driving off a cliff at 80 mph and driving off the same cliff at 55 mph.” The Republicans are usually in lockstep with the Democrats, just trying to look like they’re walking further behind them.

So what do we do in a scenario in which a vote for the Dems is a vote to toss the country into the can, and a vote for either the Dems or Republicans is a vote to support the killing of the unborn?

Luke

Luke, it seems to me that I would have voted with my feet some time before this.

I’m really getting the sense that a red wave is forming off the shores and will hit the coasts on November 3rd. The reason is, as bad a candidate as Trump can be, the left has managed to drag out an even worse candidate. And I get the feeling that, with the constant barrage of cartoonery and buffoonery from the left, the silent majority is getting revved up to smash the system by voting in the best available antithesis to the crazy left, the crazy tweeter, Donny Trump. The normal middle is waking from their slumber, and realizing that no amount of moralizing or equivocating from the Frenches and Kellers of the world can distract us from the fact that the Dems have gone off the deep end of reality.

Prince Caspian

Prince Caspian . . . I have always wanted to meet you.

Elect Infants?

I found you through a friend about 9 months ago and have been so very blessed by your ministry. You’ve changed my mind on several things and I’ve even looked for real estate in Moscow after selling my home last month.

With that said, as I’ve begun exploring the idea of Calvinism, I’ve been stopped by a critique I couldn’t get around. If strict Calvinism is true, wouldn’t babies who die and aren’t the elect, be sent to hell? I’ve always said God can figure out a loving way to hold the aborigines accountable but I can’t move past babies with no choice being separated from God for eternity. Any thoughts or resources to restart my exploration?

Thank you for your ministry.

Jeff

Jeff, the Westminster Confession simply refers to “elect infants” and does not specify how many there are, or even if there are reprobate infants. So that question need not be a barrier to you. While there have been some in the Reformed tradition who believe infant damnation a possibility, it is not the usual belief.

The Olive Tree

Not much of a “letter”, more of a question . . . Since you are a post millennial, I was curious if you had a view as to whether you think that sometime in the future Catholics and Protestants will “reunite” in one church? It does say he is coming back for “a” bride, not several? It does seem like one united church (I understand there is a lot of theology between here and there) would make for a stronger community (to include the parish model and excommunication). Many thanks in advance for any thoughts you have on this.

Best regards,

Mike

Mike, actually, yes. If I believe that the Jews are going to be grafted back into the olive tree (as I do), it is no trouble to accept a reunion between Protestants and Catholics. But, of course, this assumes that repentance must come first.

Face Ownership

Re: They don’t really own your face & others

Thank you so much for your merry wisdom over the years. It’s helped our family a good deal.

We have a great church but are required to wear masks — we don’t want to make a stand on this as there’s so much excellent stuff going on. Clear visors seem to be a solution — I’m wondering about your view on these? Apologies if you’ve written about this before.

Liz

Liz, no, I haven’t addressed this before. While I believe clear visors are “dumb,” it doesn’t present the same kind of problems, in my view, that masks do. In your situation, it might be a good compromise for church.

Thank you for persistently addressing the pressing issues  of the day — especially the issues that are “most in our faces,” i.e. masks. I regularly send your articles to my blue-collar dad living in California as a sort of balm to cool his irritation with the masking mandates. I want to ask a question regarding masks, but first I want to comment on your line:

“…for most of the players, it was simply a good old-fashioned moral panic, scaled up to fit our new global communications technology, and then followed up by good old-fashioned conceit and pride, of the sort that wants to postpone the admission of a catastrophic error as long as possible. That kind of climb down is never any fun, right?”

I think that’s exactly right, and actually gracious in leaving it open that they will “climb down.” It reminds me of those freaky cults that go out into the woods to await the arrival of a spaceship to take them to paradise — when it inevitably doesn’t come, the followers don’t come down from the hillside a little wiser and humbler; rather, they double-down and their belief just takes on another layer. The dissonance proves too much for their pride to bear. 

Here is my question regarding masks. Generalizations aside, why is it that those with more blue-collar jobs seem more fundamentally opposed to the masking mandates than the typical white-collar worker? I’m a white-collar worker myself (a pediatric therapist in Portland), and so obviously don’t think it’s the job per se that drives the opposition. Is there something more fundamental to all this? 

With appreciation,

RW

RW, I think that less formal education often means less time being indoctrinated by those who have taken over the academy.

Your article on the mask issue is truly pertinent. And I am glad someone sent me the link to read, engage with it, reflect and appreciate your work.

My comment is that when you begin your article saying that someone thought of us as ‘autistic’, it saddened me. I am not sure what is your position on the topic, but Autism is not something that makes a person irrational or perhaps ‘idiotic by choice.’ It is not something that people ‘choose’ to have and it is a real condition that affects many individuals and family at different levels. And many autistic people are actually quite the opposite if an unintelligent person . . .

Just wanted to point that out in love, because words matter. As you article so well discusses.

In His love,

Daniella

Daniella, thanks. My point had nothing to do with intelligence, but rather with an inability to read and respond to social cues. And the masks put everyone in that condition.

Will you attempt to vote in person on Nov. 3 without a mask?

My city, Columbia, MO, had a 90 day mask mandate in place from July to Oct. The city council then extended it 2 weeks at that time and just yesterday extended another 2 weeks through the end of the day, Nov. 3. I am under the impression if I show up to vote without a mask, I won’t be allowed to vote. So does one show up maskless and force the issue or stand down in order to stand up in the ballot booth?  It does seem like being forced to wear a mask is like being asked to vote before you vote, as though you’re not able to vote against wearing masks unless you’re willing to wear one.

Additionally, with increased threats of violence against those who don’t vote correctly, I am concerned that standing in line without a mask may be met with physical resistance or give election officials a heads up on which ballots to “misplace.”

Todd

Todd, I will try to vote without a mask, but if they require it, I will put one on and vote that way. Kind of like flying on an airplane. It all depends on how much you need to get there.

My wife and I appreciate your public stance on mandatory masking. Recently our appeal to the elders for liberty of conscience was dismissed as unpersuasive. It’s believed Scripture nowhere forbids covering the face in worship, thus such a requirement violates neither the Regulative Principle nor the conscience (WCF 20:4). It’s further contended that a mere idiom (“face to face”) is incapable of bearing much applicational weight and ideal situations may be impractical during emergencies. We’re concerned our gracious approach is perceived as weak argumentation. Are we misguided?

Here’s the link to our letter:

Anthony

Anthony, the problem here is that the elders cannot vote on what is and is not a violation of your conscience.

Are These Synonyms?

Can you explain the difference between complementarian and patriarchy?

Can the terms be interchangeable?

Phil

Phil, they can be interchangeable. When they are, complementarian simply means someone who believe in biblical sex roles, but wants to emphasize the harmony involved in it. When they are not, complementarian means that someone has been affected by the rhetoric of the egalitarians, and doesn’t want to associate with anything like “patriarchy.”

Dear Doug (known affectionately around our little Wisconsin home as “D-Dubs”), Perhaps you’ve written or spoken of this before, I don’t know. It is a risky thing to attempt to read Providence in real time. But I cannot help thinking that God is about the business of painting Western Christianity into a corner, from which our only option for engagement will be unvarnished declarations of truth.

What I mean is this. It matters less and less how winsome and erudite a Christian is. If he dares utter blasphemy against the Great God Chaos, he will be, as it were, put out of the city. It is no longer a cultural advantage to call one’s self a Christian. It cannot be wrangled into being cool, no matter how hard TGC tries.

We now have actual skin in the game and our enemies are uninterested in our clever reasonings and lukewarm, cultural accommodations. Take the mark or be excluded. We’re at the point that all we have available are the weapons God gave us, the Word, water, some bread and wine. Once we’re reduced to our 300 men, we’re ready to fight. I suspect that is the thinking behind the recent Psalm sings in your fair city.

What sayest thou?

P.S. You can use the nickname all you want. It may assist you in your never-ending search for cultural acceptability.

Andrew

Dear Andy Candy, I think you are exactly right. This is so that we might stop trusting in ourselves, but rather in God who raises the dead.

Halloween Question

A question regarding the celebration of Halloween. I think it is possible for a Christian to disengage some of the activities of Halloween from their diabolical origins and celebrate them innocently. There’s nothing wicked per se about altering the appearance of a pumpkin, wearing a costume (within biblical guidelines), going about the neighborhood in quest of candy, and offering candy to others. On the other hand, there is something wicked per se about exalting death, blood, witchcraft, etc. Am I missing something? I’m prepared to give up Halloween altogether. But in striking this middle road, I’m also trying to save Christmas, jazz music, and other things, for the argument that we should ban all things that have bad origins would apply to those things as well.

Douglas

Douglas, I think you are exactly right. When our kids were little, we had no problem with costumes, candy, etc. But nothing that exalted the other team. Here is a link to something I have written on the subject, and which contains a link to my original Halloween post, which I probably ought to post again.

7
Leave a Reply

avatar
 
5 Comment threads
2 Thread replies
0 Followers
 
Most reacted comment
Hottest comment thread
7 Comment authors
JamesKen BZephWe Be LibtardsMichael Delahunt Recent comment authors

  Subscribe  
newest oldest
Notify of
Gray
Guest
Gray

Well, Mr. Piper has addressed the issue, seemingly different, once before: “There is no escape from responsibility by pointing out the imperfections of leaders. That is the only kind of leaders there will ever be. Our calling in this world is not to wait for the arrival of the perfect, but to pick our way through the thicket of flaws. We would be arrogant to put ourselves above this fray and say, “A curse on both your houses.” Picking through a “thicket of flaws” would seem easy when the brambles on the right are boorish, and the morass on the… Read more »

We Be Libtards
Guest
We Be Libtards

Yes, he posted that in October 2004. And, in that same post, he concluded with

Only a fool replaces the complexity of voting with the simplicity of gloating.

Rather careless of him and his staff to not purge the archives.

JIm
Guest
JIm

With regards to Trump’s behavior….

Ben Shapiro makes the point that some sees Trump is the “assassin” of civility as contrasted to Trump being undertaker. The corpse of the civil body politic has been stone cold for a while and we refused to take note. This distinction resonates with me and is helpful in drawing out a necessary distinction.

Michael Delahunt
Member

Was just about to share the same article, Gray! Piper trumps last week’s existential article with that 16-year old article that stands on Scripture much more robustly and consistently. Hopefully it gets spread around the interweb a lot in the next week and beyond.

Zeph
Guest
Zeph

Ieff, Look at Romans 7:9. I believe that verse teaches us a lot of what happens to babies. Every miscarried baby goes to Heaven, whether from covenant Home or not. Same for all aborted babies and infants. Until you are old enough to know that you have sinned, you go to Heaven. the first cognitive sin you commit damns you. My earliest that I remember was four. I understand that the Puritans were very sensitive to this with such a high infant mortality rate.

Ken B
Guest
Ken B

My view of this is that God has not revealed exactly what happens to young infants who die, but we do know that the Judge of all the earth will do right. This means perfect justice will be done and be seen to be done, nothing will be ‘unfair’. Behold, he does all things well.

James
Guest
James

In first Corinthians 7:14, it says that children of unbelievers are unclean, but that those who have at least one believing parent are holy. That would imply that, unless they have deliberately rejected Christ or willfully sinned (I think I might have believed in Jesus before I consciously sinned) children of believers go to Heaven, but we cannot be sure about children of unbelievers. A belief that all people who were severely retarded will go to Heaven does not seem to have a place in scripture. I once heard of a man who heinously murdered a twelve year old girl,… Read more »