Saturday, October 16, 2010

"He finally realized that he was going to die."

This week my husband read to us from Gary North's Backward,Christian Soldiers?

Here are some excerpts from a section called "Optimistic Future Corpses."  I should maybe clarify that I do not consider postmillennialism to be the only acceptable view of end times. And I do not consider that only postmillennialists see things in the following way.... But I do consider the view a great encouragement to this kind of patience, wisdom and perseverence.  Yes, we must ALWAYS be ready to die at any moment, but at the same time we do not want to be like the five foolish virgins who were unprepared for a long wait.  We must not fail to invest our minas with hope and thoughtfulness.   May God give us grace.

  "David Chilton...once remarked that the day he accepted postmillennialism, he finally realized that he was going to die.  He said that this awareness was unique. Nobody had even told him this before.  He and his premillennial peers had always believed that they were going to be raptured.  He said that this new perspective on his own personal future changed the way he thought about his life's work.   Indeed, it had to.  One's time perspective is crucial to one's view of work and work's legacy.  The problem today with postmillennialism, perhaps more than anything else, is that it is a philosophy of personal, physical death.  That sort of philosophy really has a limited Christian market in our era.  Marxists have a secularized version of this faith, which is why they are such potent ideological opponents.   Most Christians have no such outlook.   They prefer not to think about death.   They prefer to think about the rapture.

"Death is the backdrop of all endeavors by postmillennialist.  The death of the sin-cursed body is the starting point. Then the question has to be asked: How should we then live?  What kinds of institutions should we build? What kind of education should we impart to our children?  How much capital should we invest in long-term projects?  What kinds of books should we read or write?  How, in short should we fight?  What can anyone leave behind that his own death will not swallow up?

"Because postmillennialists know that they cannot assume continually that they have five good years left, and that they should assume that their organizations are not going to be left behind in a world without the presence of other Christian workers, they have to think about the future.  Because they know they will die, they can be optimistic about the future.  They know that other Christians will persevere.  They know that Christian institutions will survive to serve as salt for the world civilization. Because they will die, they think to themselves, they can build for the earthly future of others who will also die.  Because their view of their own efforts is necessarily short run--one lifetime, at most-- their view of the long-term effects of their efforts in implicitly long run."

Thursday, October 14, 2010

A Mother's Tears kept in a bottle....

Rev. Leonard Katundu, called to minister to the Malawian Presbyterian Church in Africa, tells this moving account of his grandmother, Orpah.    Orpah was converted by Christian missionaries, and began to offer up fervent prayers and tears to God for the conversion of her children and grandchildren.   All of her sons became preachers of the gospel.  Her daughter, Nyembezi, also believed and taught her children the ways of the Lord. Leonard is one of Nyembezi's sons.  He has received training at the excellent Puritan Reformed Seminary in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and is looking forward to shepherding the sheep there in Malawi.

The tears of his grandmother are still remembered by God.  May God bring continued blessing because of them.