Saturday, September 8, 2012

Thanks that is 30 years overdue.

This week I wrote a letter to Reformed Book Services, a book store in Ontario, that had a significant impact on my life some 30 years ago:

 To Whom it may Concern,

I have for some time wanted to thank you for being an instrument in God's hands for my salvation.

Thirty years ago I had graduated from Calvin College and was living in Toronto.  The tidy structure of school was gone, and I was fearful and bewildered.

Some years earlier, a friend had introduced me to a devotional  -- all excerpts from works of Martyn Lloyd-Jones.  Delighting in Lloyd-Jones' understanding of depression, I later purchased Spiritual Depression at a used book store, .  A summer free of commitments yawned before me, and when I drove past your store, I decided to stop in.   There I saw volumes of sermons on Ephesians by Lloyd-Jones.   Reading them and taking notes on the sermons seemed a good way to pass some of the summer.

Though I grew up in the Christian Reformed Church, I had a woefully inadequate view of my sin before a holy God.  Sin was robbing banks, stealing someone's spouse,  and stabbing people in back alleys.  Surely it was not a word to describe me through and through.

But God had been gently and surely convicting me of my love for recognition (glory-stealing) and a lack of love for others.  As I read Lloyd-Jones on Ephesians two,  I came to the sentence about not being able to be found unless we are lost.  God showed me his glory and I knew myself to be a sinner before a glorious and mighty GOD.  (I weep as I write).  

I had hoped to be a writer, but then and there I gave my writing and my future to the Lord.  I told him that I wanted to live for his glory. I told him that if my writing was not for his glory, I wanted none of it.

Some years later I married and God gave us eight living children.  God has given me a small place to be faithful in, a perfect place.  I am glad to be his daughter and to have him as my Father.  

And I am grateful for the day he led me to to buy Lloyd-Jones at your store.   May God continue to bless your business for his glory.

For the King,
Jeannette Paulson

Friday, September 7, 2012

Moral Decisions

What if we are not sure of what is right or wrong in a particular situation? Saint John says that sin is lawlessness.  God's law defines sin.  I find the Westminster Larger Catechism  list of what the law commands and forbids very instructive.  It is a careful study of scripture. For example, do you think of  "undue delay of marriage" as a violation of the seventh commandment?  It is. Many of life's decisions would be clearer if we were better students of the word.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Freud... and religion as neurotic disease

 I have never heard the Freudian view of religion expressed as clearly as in J.H. Bavinck's The Church Between Temple and Mosque
In recent times an even more pernicious verdict has been given on religion. Freudian psychology put forward the hypothesis the religion is a neurotic disease. The god whom we adore, on whom we feel dependent, whom we fear and whom we love, is nothing but a gigantic projection of the father image of our youth. In a healthy mind this image dissolves naturally, and the “ego,” the feeling of self-reliance, takes its place. But due to all kinds of circumstances this father image in some people does not disappear, but it is projected and becomes a god. This projection is, of course, harmful for the development of one’s personality, and people will never become sound and mature men and women as long as they live under the spell of this self-made god.