Behold the Lamb of God

Text: John 1:29

EMERGENCY ALERT: Sin is deadly serious in the sight of God. God’s wrath, His ‘holy revulsion against that which is the contradiction of His holiness’ is fully justified. The only way of escape from this inevitable and just judgment is God’s provision in His sin atoning Lamb. This is not fake news! This is not a drill!

Before You Believed, You Belonged

Article by John Piper (original source here)

When it comes to weighty matters in the Bible, let’s be like Mary. “Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart” (Luke 2:19). First, she took note of important things and put them in a safe place — her heart. Second, her thoughts “conferred” about them. That’s what “ponder” means, and what the Greek word for “ponder” implies.

But oh, how few people do this when they read the Gospel of John and find stupendous statements about God’s sovereignty in our salvation! May I draw your attention to a few of these, and weave them together for you to ponder? They are no less important than the message of the angels when Jesus was born.

Yours They Were
Let’s start with Jesus’s prayer in John 17.

“I have manifested your name to the people whom you gave me out of the world. Yours they were, and you gave them to me. . . . I am praying for them. I am not praying for the world but for those whom you have given me, for they are yours.” (John 17:6, 9)

Here are two stupendous statements. One is that God gave the disciples to Jesus. The other is that before he gave them to Jesus, they were already his. Store that in a safe place for a moment.

“Being willing to come to Jesus was not something God saw in you, but something God worked in you.” Tweet Share on Facebook
There are at least three other ways that Jesus talks about people belonging to the Father before the Father gives them to him.

“You do not believe because you are not of my sheep”(John 10:26).

“Whoever is of God hears the words of God. The reason why you do not hear them is that you are not of God” (John 8:47).

“Everyone who is of the truth listens to my voice” (John 18:37).

Each of these three phrases — “of my sheep,” “of God,” and “of the truth” — describes people before the Father gives them to Jesus.

People are “of my sheep” or not, before they believe, because Jesus says that not being “of his sheep” is why they “do not believe” (John 10:26).

People are “of God” before they truly “hear the words of God,” because Jesus says that not being “of God” is why people do not hear (John 8:47).

And people are “of the truth” before they “listen to my voice,” because Jesus says that being “of the truth” is why they listen (John 18:37).

So, these are three ways of describing the disciples’ belonging to the Father (or not) before he gives them to Jesus (John 17:6).

Jesus Was Praying for Every Believer
Let’s ponder this for a moment. In John 17:8, Jesus was praying for those who believed on him, and for those “who will believe in me through their word” (John 17:20). In other words, he was praying for all of us who have become Christians.

Therefore, what he says about those who belong to him, he says about us. Let this be personal. How is it that you came to belong to Jesus? In verses 6 and 9, Jesus says it is because God the Father “gave” you to Jesus. And how is it that the Father could give you to his Son? Jesus answers in verse 9: because you already belonged to the Father. You, Father, have given them to me, “for they are yours.”

Did All Belong to the Father?
What does it mean to belong to the Father before you are given to Jesus? Does it mean simply that God possesses all humans, including you? You belonged to the Father because everybody belongs to the Father? Probably not. Because those who belong to the Father would be those who are “of God,” and Jesus says in John 8:47 that there are those who are “not of God.” Being “of God” can’t include all humans. So, belonging to God before being given to Jesus does not include everyone.

Who then does it include? Or a more personal way to ask the question is: Why does it include you? Why are you among those who belonged to the Father before he gave you to the Son? Was it because you had some quality, and God saw this and chose you to be in the group that he would give to Jesus? Did he see that you were willing to come to Jesus or willing to believe on Jesus, and for that reason counted you to be part of those who were his?

No. Because in John 6:44 Jesus said, “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him.” In other words, being willing to come to Jesus was not something God saw in you, but something God worked in you. No one is willing to come to Jesus on his own. Only those who are drawn by the Father can come.

Did the Father Draw Everyone to Jesus?
But what about the possibility that all humans are drawn by the Father, and only some prove willing to come? After all, doesn’t Jesus say in John 12:32 that he draws all people to himself? Well, actually no, it doesn’t. It says more literally, “I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all to myself” (John 12:32). Which could mean all people who are “my sheep” (John 10:16, 27) or all people who are “the children of God” (John 11:52) or all people who belong to the Father (John 17:6).

Actually, we know Jesus did not mean that the Father’s drawing applies to every person when he said, “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him.” The reason we know this is that later in the chapter, Jesus explicitly explains his meaning. He says,

“There are some of you who do not believe.” (For Jesus knew from the beginning who those were who did not believe, and who it was who would betray him.) And he said, “This is why I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.” (John 6:64–65)

“Before we listened to the truth, before we were drawn to the Son, before we believed, we belonged to the Father.”

That’s an explanation of verse 44. He gives Judas as an example of someone who would not believe. Then he explains Judas’s unbelief with the words, “This is why (back in verse 44) I told you that no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father.” In other words, Judas did not believe because “no one can come to me unless it is granted him by the Father” — implying that Judas was not granted this. Or to use the words of John 6:44, which Jesus is referring back to, the Father did not draw Judas.

Which means, all humans are not drawn by the Father to Jesus. Judas wasn’t. And so being willing to come is not something God finds in a group of humans, but something he puts in a group of humans. Which means that God did not choose a group of humans as his own because he saw in them a willingness to come to Jesus. Whatever willingness humans have to come to Jesus is not the basis, but the result of belonging to the Father beforehand.

In Spite of Disqualification
So, I ask again to all who belong to Jesus: Why were you among those who first belonged to God before he gave you to Jesus? It was not because you were willing to believe. It was simply because God was willing to “grant” you to believe — to draw you to Jesus.

In other words, God chose you freely to belong to him. By an act of free grace. You did not qualify for God’s choice. Nor did I! It was in spite of disqualification. We were unwilling to come. We loved darkness and hated light and would not come to the light (John 3:19–20). In spite of knowing this about us, God chose some darkness-lovers to be his. And then, to save us from our rebellion and guilt, he gave us to Jesus. “Yours they were, and you gave them to me” (John 17:6).

What Does Belonging to the Father Secure?
What, then, may we hope for — we who have been given to Jesus by the Father? Jesus tells us, “All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never cast out” (John 6:37). The Father’s giving us to Jesus secures our coming. All he gives come. And when we come, Jesus receives us — forever. He will never cast us out. Instead of casting us out, he dies for us that we may live. “I know my own and my own know me . . . and I lay down my life for the sheep” (John 10:14–15). None of us will be lost. We will all be raised from the dead. “This is the will of him who sent me, that I should lose nothing of all that he has given me, but raise it up on the last day” (John 6:39).

“The Father’s giving us to Jesus secures our coming. And when we come, Jesus receives us — forever. He will never cast us out.”

All this is sure because before we belonged to Jesus, we belonged to the Father. Before we listened to the truth, we belonged to the Father. Before we believed, we belonged to the Father. Before we were drawn to the Son, we belonged to the Father. And before we were willing to believe, we belonged to the Father.

And that has made all the difference! Because we belonged to the Father, we listened to the truth; and because we belonged to the Father, we believed; and because we belonged to the Father, we were drawn by him to Jesus; and because we belonged to the Father, we were willing to believe.

May I encourage you to put these truths inside the treasure chest of your heart and let your thoughts confer about them? Turn the prayer of Jesus into your own very personal prayer. Jesus prayed, “Yours they were, and you gave them to me” (John 17:6). You may pray, “Father, I was yours, and you gave me to Jesus. How did I come to be yours? Grace. All grace. Absolutely free, unconditional grace. May all the Scriptures help me ponder this inexhaustible reality — forever.”

Sola Gratia – Grace Alone

I am thankful for today’s opportunity to share God’s word. I was able to say a whole lot on the vital theme of “Sola Gratia” (Grace Alone) in just under an hour.

The host, Julio Rodriguez wrote, “Today, I had the privilege of having John Samson join me on BRIDGE Radio to talk about the Reformation and “Sola Gratia”, that is ‘By Grace Alone.’ On today’s episode, we discuss why it is only by God’s grace that we are saved and not by our works or through other means. The Word of God describes the human condition as being completely unable to achieve salvation on his own. We review Pelagianism, Semi-Pelagianism, and both the Roman Catholic and Protestant Arminian view of God’s Grace in relation to our salvation. What is the correct view? Do I play any part in my salvation? Well, tune in to find out!”

Here’s a link to the podcast.

The paperback version of my new book “The Five Solas – Standing Together Alone” is available here.

The ebook and audio version is available here.

Why Churches Should Excommunicate Longstanding Non-Attenders

Article by Alex Duke, editorial manager of 9Marks (original source here).

A few years back, I heard about a church that had grown concerned about their bloated membership. After years of lackadaisical accounting, the number had become unwieldy, even disingenuous. Their “official” membership tallied more than twice the average attendance—doubtlessly inflated by the dead, the derelict, and the well-intentioned-but-never-there.

This discrepancy obscured the church’s identity.

So they came up with an idea: let’s just zero out the membership and, over the course of time, let those who are still around re-up their commitment and re-join the church.

This approach, they thought, would slay two giants with one smooth stone: first, it would enable the church to reach out to everyone on their list and hopefully reanimate for some the desire to gather with God and God’s people. Second, they’d finally know the souls over which they were to keep watch, the individuals for whom they would one day be held accountable.

So over the course of a few months, they reached out to everyone and let them know of a date in the future when all who were willing would re-dedicate their spiritual oversight to this specific church. For many, this was a no-brainer; they’d never stopped attending. For others, God used the correspondence to pry them out of their apathy and into the pew.

But for some, the letters were returned to sender (or were ignored), the emails bounced (or were ignored), and the pleas for reunion fell on deaf ears, if they fell on any ears at all.

And so, before long, their covenant with this church was deleted with a keystroke.

THE GOOD NEWS

Though full of good intentions, I submit that what happened at the church above is pastoral malpractice. It flips Jesus’ “Lost Sheep” parable in Matthew 18 upside-down: “If a man has 100 sheep, and 99 of them have come back, does he not stay with the 99 and leave the one alone?”

It’s good to have a more accurate membership roll. But it’s best to pursue these non-attenders toward a specific end: removal if they’re attending another gospel-preaching church, restoration if they’re happy to return, and excommunication if they’re either unwilling to attend church anywhere or unable to be found.

In fact, I want to up the ante a bit: pursuing longstanding non-attenders—I don’t mean inconsistent attenders, but those who have been wholly absent for several months or even years—and excommunicating those they can’t find is a mark of a healthy church. Of course such pursuits can be done poorly and with a heavy hand. But this abuse should make us cautious and careful, not convinced the better choice is to do nothing.

This practice is entirely in accord with the Bible’s teaching on what a church is, what a pastor is, and what biblical love is. Even if the non-attender has no idea any pursuit or eventual discipline is happening, the church’s act appropriately warns those who are present about the dangers of pursuing the Christian life outside a local church.

BIBLICAL PRECEDENT

With feathers sufficiently ruffled, let me provide a biblical rationale. Continue reading

Do We Really Need to Wage War Against False Doctrine?

Article: (original source here) Do We Really Need to Wage War Against False Doctrine? . . . and how evangelicalism’s refusal to fight for the faith destroyed the movement by Phil Johnson

I answered an e-mail this week from someone who suggested that we should not concern ourselves with people who teach false doctrine. “After all,” this person said, quoting Gamaliel from Acts 5:38-39, “if this plan or this undertaking is of man, it will fail; but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them. You might even be found opposing God.”

My reply? an excerpt from a chapter I wrote for Reforming or Conforming?: Post-Conservative Evangelicals and the Emerging Church:

Christian leaders in particular are charged with the task of defending the truth against those who would twist it (Acts 20:28-31). As politically incorrect as this might sound to postmodern ears, there are abroad and within the church “many who are insubordinate, empty talkers and deceivers . . .. They must be silenced” (Titus 1:10-11). Or, in the more picturesque imagery of King James parlance, “[Their] mouths must be stopped.”

How false teachers are to be silenced is one of those things in Scripture that is crystal-clear. It is not by physical force or auto-da-fé. But they are to be refuted and rebuked by qualified elders in the church who are skilled in the Scriptures, “able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it” (v. 8). The duty assumes that vital truth is clear enough that we can know it with certainty. And in the battle against falsehood, Scripture prescribes a clear strategy involving exhortation, reproof, rebuke, and correction.

This is to be done patiently, not pugnaciously: “The Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently enduring evil, correcting his opponents with gentleness. God may perhaps grant them repentance leading to a knowledge of the truth, and they may escape from the snare of the devil” (2 Timothy 2:24-26).

And yet even within those boundaries, the defense of the faith sometimes requires a kind of spiritual militancy (1 Timothy 1:18; Jude 3). The Christian life—especially the duty of the leader—is frequently pictured in Scripture as that of warfare (2 Corinthians 10:3-6; Ephesians 6:10-18; 1 Timothy 1:18; 2 Timothy 2:3-4).

So the defense of the faith is no easy task. But it is an indispensable duty for faithful Christians. Again, Scripture is not the least bit vague or equivocal about that.

Nevertheless, the defense of the faith is a duty the evangelical movement as a whole has mostly shirked for at least two decades. Since the formal dissolution of the International Council on Biblical Inerrancy in September 1987, evangelicalism as a movement has never fully mobilized for the defense of any point of doctrine—even in the wake of seismic challenges to the doctrine of God in the form of Open Theism—and despite recent assaults on the penal, propitiatory, and substitutionary aspects of Christ’s atoning work. It is no longer safe to assume that someone who calls himself “evangelical” would even affirm such historic evangelical nonnegotiables as the exclusivity of Christ or the necessity of conscious faith in Christ for salvation. Recently, it seems, the evangelical movement’s standard response to that kind of doctrinal slippage has looked like nothing more than cynical insouciance.

Such trends represent nothing less than the abandonment of true evangelical principles. Historic evangelicalism has always had the gospel at its center. The name itself reflects that, and it also denotes a particular stress on the doctrinal content of the gospel message. Yet the typical message proclaimed in many mainstream evangelical churches—including some of the best-known and most influential megachurches—was long ago reduced to a set of simplistic, solipsistic aphorisms (“God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life”; “accept Jesus as your personal savior.”) The message is sometimes overlaid with moralistic platitudes and a conservative, mostly-secular political agenda. In fact, a lobbyist’s commitment to a handful of morally-related political issues is about as close to anything serious as you will find in the average evangelical community. So the message communicated to the world at large sounds like a social and cultural commentary driven by Republican-party politics. Gone are the clarion notes of personal guilt, the redemption of the soul, and the real meaning of the cross—which, after all, Scripture says is the one message worth proclaiming (1 Corinthians 2:2).

Why fight for a message that doesn’t even have Christ crucified at the center anyway? Contemporary evangelicals have utterly neglected and virtually forgotten almost everything truly distinctive about historic evangelicalism. They have broadened their boundaries to include beliefs they once viewed as beyond the pale. They have now forgotten what the boundaries were all about in the first place. Meanwhile, with the gospel no longer at evangelicalism’s heart and hub, the entire evangelical subculture has begun to seem like a kind of spiritual black hole, where bad ideas spawned at the fringes are sucked one after another into the void at the center.

The Biblical Witness to the Holy Trinity

Article by Kim Riddlebarger – The Biblical Witness to the Holy Trinity (original source here)

It is common to hear claims that Christians, Jews, and Muslims worship the same God. The God of Abraham is often claimed as the father of the three great monotheistic faiths. A survey of the Bible, however, reveals a Triune God completely unlike the god of the Qur’an or even the God of contemporary Judaism. The doctrine of the Trinity is Christianity’s most distinctive doctrine, despite the fact that this doctrine stretches the limits of human language and logic. Admittedly, in many ways the Trinity is beyond our comprehension, yet we confess it because this is how God reveals himself to us in his word.

The biblical witness to the doctrine of the Trinity is extensive and can be set forth in any number of ways. We begin by noting that the Scriptures are absolutely clear that there is only one God. In Deuteronomy 6:4 Moses declares, “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.” In Isaiah 44:6 we read, “I am the first and I am the last; besides me there is no god.” In 1 Corinthians 8:4-6 Paul proclaims, “There is no God but one. For although there may be so-called gods in heaven or on earth’as indeed there are many ‘gods’ and many ‘lords”yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.” James writes, “You believe that God is one; you do well. Even the demons believe’and shudder!” (2:19). The Scriptures of both testaments teach there is but one God.

One God in Three Persons
Yet the Bible also teaches that, although there is one God, he is revealed in three distinct persons: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. When John the Baptist baptizes Jesus, the Father declares, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased,” even as the Spirit of God descends upon Jesus as a dove (Matt. 3:16-17). In Matthew 28:19, Jesus commands his disciples to “go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” The mission of the church is to go and make disciples by baptizing them in the name (singular) of the three persons of the Godhead (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit).

In the benediction concluding his second letter to the church at Corinth, Paul blesses his readers with, “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all” (2 Cor. 13:14). In John 14:26, Jesus informs the disciples that “the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things.” As God in human flesh (cf. John 1:14), Jesus speaks of both the Holy Spirit and the Father as equals.

Another line of biblical evidence for the Trinity is that the same divine attributes of glory and majesty are assigned to each of the three persons of the Godhead. The Scriptures teach that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit are eternal. According to Isaiah, God says, “I am the first and the last” (44:6), and Paul adds that God is “eternal” (Rom. 16:26), without beginning or end. John records the Son saying, “I am the first and the last” (Rev. 22:13), and Micah notes that God’s “coming and going are from everlasting” (5:2). In Hebrews we read of the Holy Spirit as “the eternal Spirit” (9:14). All three’Father, Son, and Holy Spirit’are eternal, without beginning or end. Continue reading

Why Calvin Thought Church Discipline is Essential to the Health of the Church

Article by Matthew Tuininga, From the 9Marks Journal (original source here):

Soon after John Calvin was appointed as a pastor of the Genevan church, having only recently arrived as a refugee fleeing persecution in his native France, one of his first actions was to petition the city government for the establishment of church discipline. It was a hard sell. In no other Reformed city had the civil magistrates given clergy such authority. The reformers Zwingli and Bullinger maintained that overseeing the moral lives of Christians was a task for the civil magistrate. Most Reformed theologians and magistrates associated ecclesiastical discipline with papal tyranny.

Calvin acknowledged that the Roman church had grievously abused discipline by wielding it tyrannically to accomplish all manner of church goals. To prevent this evil, he called the magistrates “to ordain and elect certain persons of good life and witness from among the faithful” to shepherd the people on behalf of the church as a whole. These elders, along with the pastors, would bind themselves to the procedure laid out by Jesus in Matthew 18, by which professing Christians were to be held accountable to one another in the life of Christian discipleship.

CALVIN AND HIS CONSISTORY

While the city council granted the pastors’ request in principle, it soon became evident that there was little agreement in practice. Calvin found himself banished from the city. Within three years, however, the city asked him to come back. Though he was reluctant, he agreed to return under the condition that church discipline be established. The city relented, though nearly 15 years of conflict remained before the consistory—the body of pastors and elders charged with the ministry of church discipline—could rest secure from political interference.

Calvin’s consistory disciplined members of the Genevan church for a wide range of sins including idolatry, violence, sexual immorality, marital problems, and interpersonal conflict. They disciplined men who abused their wives and children, sons who refused to care for their aging parents, landowners who exploited their tenants, doctors who failed to care properly for the sick, merchants who practiced price gouging or sought to prevent economic competition, and employers who exploited or mistreated their workers. While many people were brought before the consistory, temporarily barred from the Lord’s Supper, and required to express public repentance or reconciliation, very few were permanently excommunicated (i.e., banished from participation in the sacraments).

DISCIPLINE: AN EXTENSION OF THE WORD

Calvin viewed discipline as a necessary extension of the church’s ministry of word and sacrament. While he did not identify it as a mark of the church, he did insist that discipline is essential to the spiritual health of a church, without which a church cannot long endure.

Discipline was necessary to preserve the honor of God and the integrity of the Lord’s Supper, to protect the members of the church from being led astray by other members, and to call those who were straying to repentance.

DISCIPLINE & THE LORD’S SUPPER

At the heart of Calvin’s passion for the exercise of church discipline was his concern that the Lord’s Supper not devolve into a mere ceremony of hypocrisy. The Lord’s Supper is not simply a celebration of the forgiveness of sins, he argued, but a communion of brothers and sisters in “love, peace, and concord.” Calvin again: “None of the brethren can be injured, despised, rejected, abused, or in any way offended by us, without at the same time injuring, despising, and abusing Christ by the wrongs we do; that we cannot disagree with our brethren without at the same time disagreeing with Christ; that we cannot love Christ without loving him in the brethren; that we ought to take the same care of our brethren’s bodies as we take of our own; for they are members of our body; and that, as no part of our body is touched by any feeling of pain which is not spread among all the rest, so we ought not to allow a brother to be affected by any evil, without being touched with compassion for him” (Institutes, 4.17.38).

In short, when Christians celebrated the Lord’s Supper while exploiting, oppressing, or abusing one another, they made a mockery of it.

DISCIPLINE: SPIRITUAL, NOT POLITICAL

Calvin insisted that discipline is not an expression of political power but of spiritual power. It is not coercive but pastoral. To be sure, when wielded arbitrarily, church discipline devolved into mere tyranny. But Calvin insisted that a person could only be disciplined for conduct that was clearly and manifestly sinful according to Scripture, and only as long as the person refused to repent of that conduct.

Furthermore, where sin was so obvious, notorious, and persistent, the elders and pastors of a church exercising church discipline would merely be proclaiming the truth of God’s Word as it applied to an unrepentant individual. As such, like preaching, discipline was one of what Jesus called the keys of the kingdom of heaven, opening the kingdom to the repentant through the proclamation of the gospel and closing it to those who refused to repent.

As Calvin puts it: “The Lord testifies that such judgment by believers is nothing but the proclamation of his own sentence, and that whatever they have done on earth is ratified in heaven. For they have the word of God with which to condemn the perverse; they have the word with which to receive the repentant into grace. They cannot err or disagree with God’s judgment, for they judge solely according to God’s law, which is no uncertain or earthly opinion but God’s holy will and heavenly oracle” ( Institutes, 4.11.2).

DISCIPLINE & THE GOAL OF SALVATION

What was crucial for Calvin was that the ultimate purpose of discipline is not vengeance but salvation. He rejected the practices of ongoing penance or ritual humiliation, warning that “zeal for discipline” often leads to “pharisaical rigor” that “hurries on the miserable offender to ruin, instead of curing him” (his commentary on 2 Corinthians 2:11). As soon as a disciplined person repented, he or she was to be immediately welcomed into full communion.

When conducted graciously and according to Christ’s word, discipline ensured that the church did not proclaim a false and empty gospel of cheap grace but a gospel with power to draw human beings into genuine communion with God and one another. Calvin: “[E]xcommunication does not tend to drive men from the Lord’s flock but rather to bring them back when wandering and going astray” (Commentary on 2 Thessalonians 3:15).

For Calvin, discipline expressed the love of a father who does not allow his children to go astray to their own hurt or death but uses restraint and correction where necessary to ensure their flourishing. It’s necessary to the health and survival of a church because it ensures that the religion we practice is not the religion of hypocrisy but of grace that leads to righteousness and life.

For more: https://www.9marks.org/article/a-biblical-theology-of-church-discipline/

Rules For Sons

Not sure who wrote this…

Rules For Sons:

1. Never shake a man’s hand sitting down.
2. There are plenty of ways to enter a pool. The stairs ain’t one.
3. The man at the grill is the closest thing we have to a king.
4. In a negotiation, never make the first offer.
5. Act like you’ve been there before. Especially in the end zone.
6. Request the late check-out.
7. When entrusted with a secret, keep it.
8. Hold your heroes to a higher standard.
9. Return a borrowed car with a full tank of gas.
10. Play with passion or not at all…
11. When shaking hands, grip firmly and look him in the eye.
12. Don’t let a wishbone grow where a backbone should be.
13. If you need music on the beach, you’re missing the point.
14. Carry two handkerchiefs. The one in your back pocket is for you. The one in your breast pocket is for her.
15. You marry the girl, you marry her whole family.
16. Be like a duck. Remain calm on the surface and paddle like crazy underneath.
17. Experience the serenity of traveling alone.
18. Never be afraid to ask out the best looking girl in the room.
19. Never turn down a breath mint.
20. In a game of HORSE, sometimes a simple free throw will get ’em.
21. A sport coat is worth 1000 words.
22. Try writing your own eulogy. Never stop revising.
23. Thank a veteran. And then make it up to him.
24. If you want to know what makes you unique, sit for a caricature.
25. Eat lunch with the new kid.
26. After writing an angry email, read it carefully. Then delete it.
27. Ask your mom to play. She won’t let you win. (Neither will I)
28. See it on the big screen.
29. Give credit. Take the blame.
30. Write down your dreams.
31. Always protect your siblings (and teammates).
32. Be confident and humble at the same time.
33. Always open her door.
34. Tell her she’s beautiful and mean it when she’s feeling her worst.
35. Say I’m sorry first.
36. If she means that much to you, “DUTCH” is not an option.
37. Respect is earned it is not a right.
38. If it’s worth it work at it or for it.
39. The only person you need to be better than is the person you were yesterday.
40. You may be outplayed but there is never an excuse to be outworked.
41. You will be challenged…..
42. Sometimes the hardest thing to do is the right thing……you won’t regret it.

Life Can Only Come From Life

“Real science, which is a Believer’s true friend, just delivered ANOTHER MAJOR BLOW to the religious belief of Darwinian evolutionism! Until 2016, the inability for life to begin on its own had always been a thorn-in-the-side to Darwinism. Then Harvard biologist and Nobel Laureate Jack Szostak announced he’d proven RNA could replicate itself; thus life could have arisen from chemicals. Though hailed by Darwinists as their conquering hero, he’s now had to retract his claims, saying he was blinded by his BELIEFS. Meanwhile, the Law of Biogenesis holds that life can only come from life, leaving ‘In the beginning God created’ as the only viable explanation for our existence.” – Russ Miller

http://retractionwatch.com/2017/12/05/definitely-embarrassing-nobel-laureate-retracts-non-reproducible-paper-nature-journal/