Monthly Archives: October 2011

Applicationally Speaking

“Successful, life changing application is launched from the text and flies under the radar screen to lodge itself in the response center of the listener, with a surprise sense of “So that’s  what it means.”  David Jackman

I think there is something worthwhile in this statement.  Dr. David Allen has been known to say that  “High Predictability produces low impact.”  While this is most often used  in a context of preaching  content and delivery, the same can be said for application.  If someone can see an application coming, they may be more likely to put up a shield to deflect how they need to apply the scripture to their lives.

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From the Pastor’s Book Shelf: Reformation Day Edition

The Unquenchable Flame:  Discovering the Heart of the Reformation  by Michael Reeves

At a recent conference I attended, one of the speakers mentioned a new book that was recently released on the Protestant Reformation.  Since I was going to be travelling a few hours later, I pulled out my Kindle and downloaded it for the plane ride home. I was not sure what to expect, but what I found was an excellent , easy to read, summary of the major people, places, and events that rocked the world and changed the face of Christendom forever.   The book focuses mainly on the principal figures of Martin Luther, Ulrich Zwingli, John Calvin, as well as the a few of  the secondary figures from the continental locale, and also the key players in the reformation that took place in Great Britain as well.

The greatest strengths of this work are its readability (it reads like a novel), the masterful way in which it covers a huge sweep of history in a relatively short volume (about 200 pages), and the section where  the author offers resources for further study for anyone interested in the specific people, places, nd events during this tumultuous time in Christian history.

Conversely, some of its strengths are the cause of some of the areas of critique.  In certain sections the treatment of its events left this reader desiring more information.  Likewise, the time line is not always abundantly clear.

Overall, this is an excellent volume both for those who are slightly interested in the Reformation as well as those who are passionately committed to studying this era of church history.  Pick up a copy today!

Rating:  4 out of 5 Bookshelves.

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Filed under Books, Church History, Worthy Reading

Happy Reformation Day

Happy Reformation Day! Here are some musical Reformation Stylings for your “Manic Monday.”

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A Method to the Memory

So now that you have memorized a verse or two the question is, “How do I retain what I have memorized?”  There are many methods, but the easiest one I have found is this.  The first thing you need to do  is gather your materials.  For this method you will need:

  1. 3×5 index cards
  2. small index card box large enough to hold 3×5 index cards
  3. 7 tab dividers
  4. A sharpie or a ballpoint pen

Use one of the index cards and write the verse you are trying to memorize word for word on the card complete with the reference.  Next take the sharpie/pen and label the 7 tab dividers one for each day of the week (Monday, Tuesday, etc.) and place them in the card box.   After memorizing a verse place that card behind the tab marked Monday.  Then on Monday, work on the new verse and the verse you placed behind the Monday tab.  Once the second verse is memorized it will go behind Tuesday.  The next Monday you pick a new verse and review the verse or verses behind the Monday tab.  On Tuesday you review the Tuesday verse and the current week’s verse.  Continue the process each week.  Following this procedure, at the end of the year at a rate of one verse a week you will have memorized 52 verses, and each day you are reviewing 6 or 7 verses instead of 52 verses.  This way they are all fresh in your mind.

Happy Memorizing!  If you have another method of scripture memory retention, leave a comment.  I’d love to hear how you do it.

 

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Filed under Scripture memory, The Bible

What if…What would you do?

Dust off that part of your brain that in the past you utilized regularly, but has since gathered dust like the periodical stacks in your local library! That’s right I am talking about your imagination. Imagine a scenario where there were no Bibles allowed. Or perhaps there was a scenario that you are no longer able to see and therefore could no longer read your Bible. Have you hidden enough of God’s word in your heart to sustain you? As Donald Whitney said, “Scripture memory is like reinforcing steel to sagging faith.” Why don’t you give it a try this week! Here are some verses to get you started. Pick one, write it on an index card and start working on it. You won’t regret it.

Psalm 119:11
Proverbs 25:28
1 John 1:9
Romans 5:8

I will follow up later this week with an article about how to keep the verses fresh. Let me know how it goes!

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That’s one way to beat the system

A lot of information has come out about Steve Jobs the last few weeks.  This is one nugget that I had not heard of.  Jobs apparently refused to buy a license plate.  Here’s how he beat the system:

For years, rumors swirled that Jobs had either won a special dispensation from
California authorities or was just daring police to stop him. While the why
remains somewhat cloudy, an interview by ITWire with a former Apple security executive reveals the real
reason: a little-known loophole in California vehicle laws that gives owners up
to six months to get plates for their vehicles.

According to Jon Callas,
now chief technical officer of Entrust, Jobs would arrange with his vehicle
leasing company to switch out his silver Mercedes every six months with a new,
identical model.

I don’t condone the behavior, but it sure was clever!

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The Anvil of God’s Word

One of my great passions is the Word of God (Hence the name of this blog).  I love spending time in it, but I also love reading about it.  In one of the books I was reading not long ago, I came across this poem.  I thought  you might enjoy it.

The Anvil of God’s Word[1]

 Last Eve I paused beside the blacksmith’s door

And heard the anvil ring the vesper chimes;

Then looking in, I saw upon the floor

Old hammers worn out with beating years of time.

“How many anvils have you had,” said I,

“To wear and batter all these hammers so?”

“Just one,” said he and then with twinkling eye,

“The anvil wears the hammers out, you know.”

And so I thought, the anvil of God’s Word

For ages skeptics’ blows have beat upon,

Yet, though the noise of falling blows was heard,

The anvil is unharmed, the hammers are gone.

John Clifford


[1]W. A. Criswell, The Bible for Today’s World (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1965), 118.

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