Why I LOVE the ESV

This will probably seem extremely lame and retarded to some, but  I just keep falling more and more in love with the ESV.  The big reason is for how helpful that translation is in understanding the Word of God.  Just this morning, I was reading this boring commentary on Colossians before going to a bible study, and I would read page after page after page on how a particular verse should be translated and why certain verbs are present tense and in the aorist and blah, blah, blah… when I would read that verse in my ESV bible, that verse is translated EXACTLY how these 50 bible commentators have agreed it should be translated.  Praise GOD! 
Now, if I could just get myself to concentrate long enough to follow these commentators train of thought.

Great thoughts on Suffering and our Worship

From Mars Hill’s blog…


Mars Hill Church | The Mars Hill Blog

Notes: Suffering to Worship

Posted: 28 Apr 2009 10:03 AM PDT

TEXT: 1 Peter 4:12–19
PREACHER: Pastor Mark Driscoll
DATE: April 26, 2009


1 Peter 4:12–19 represents the culmination of Peter’s teachings regarding suffering as a magnificent opportunity to grow as a worshiper of Jesus Christ. This passage includes three statements about worship: “rejoice” (v. 13); “rejoice and be glad” (v. 13); “glorify God” (v. 16).

  • Worship emanates from God. The Trinity–Father, Son, Holy Spirit–lives in ongoing, perfect, unceasing love and communication. Worship.
  • We are made in the likeness of God; we can’t help but worship, living our lives for the good and glory of someone or something.
  • When we live for God, that’s worship. When we live for something besides God (self, status, knowledge, money, power, sports, a relationship, etc.), that’s idolatry.

In suffering, our worship and our identity are tested. Suffering is a trial (v. 12). Peter identifies five reasons why this is cause for worship.

1. Worship God Because You Are Loved (1 Pet. 4:12)

  • If you are for God, some people will be against you.
  • Jesus suffered. As his followers, we should expect to suffer as well. In this life, suffering is neither abnormal nor temporary.
  • Joy cannot be found in people–whether or not they love you. True joy is in the fact that Jesus loves you.

2. Worship God Because Glory is Coming (1 Pet. 4:13)

  • For Christians: this life is the closest you will ever get to hell.
  • For unbelievers: this life is the closest you will ever get to heaven.
  • This life and its troubles will pale in light of eternity.

3. Worship God Because the Spirit Rests Upon You (1 Pet. 4:14)

For Christians, the same Spirit that rested upon Christ is resting upon you (Matt. 3:16). Christians may be insulted by the…

  1. Hopeful Irreligious – those who are misinformed or blinded by their sin
  2. Less Hopeful Irreligious – those who blatantly deny the truth of the Bible, Jesus as God, etc.
  3. Hopeful Religious – those who are new Christians, poorly taught but open and humble
  4. Less Hopeful Religious – those who see all issues as either closed to debate (fundamentalist) or open to interpretation (liberal)

4. Worship God Because You Are A Christian (1 Pet. 4:15–16)

  • The word Christian originated as pejorative slang, like a racial slur. The first followers of Jesus appropriated the label as a badge of honor, since their goal was indeed to live as “little Christs,” living for and like their Savior.
  • The New Testament uses the word Christian three times: Acts 11:26; Acts 26:28; 1 Pet. 4:16.
  • Are you suffering as a consequence of something you have done, or are you suffering because you follow Jesus?
  • For the unbeliever, suffering is punishment. For Christians, Jesus already received our punishment in our place; our suffering is purification…

5. Worship God Because Suffering Is For Your Good (1 Pet. 4:17–19)

1. Suffering Exposes Our Idols
An idol is an object of worship from which we draw (false) meaning, value, and purpose. Oftentimes the idol is good thing (i.e. not bad in and of itself) elevated to a god thing.

Three kinds of idols (source: Tim Keller):

  1. Personal Idols – money, romance, family, friendship, self expression
  2. Religious Idols – doctrine, morality/self-righteous behavior
  3. Cultural Idols – everyone is right; truth is personal, not public; feelings rule; ideology

2. Suffering Helps Us Do Good

  • Suffering reminds us of the good Jesus’ suffering has done for us.
  • Suffering causes us to be more compassionate and empathetic.
  • Suffering makes us consider how we have caused others to suffer.
  • Suffering compels us to repent of the suffering we have caused.
  • Suffering helps us to be more cautious with our words and actions in the future.


  • Is there any suffering you have caused (or are causing now) that you need to repent of?
  • Are you more appreciative of Jesus?
  • Are you ready to worship Jesus?


Meaning to the Madness

Unless you’re waking up from a coma, you noticed some changes to the format here at the website.  Well, here’s the logic – 
There is a full line up of videos along the left-hand side.  The top one will probably ALWAYS be that Piper and the Prosperity Gospel one, because that’s just too awesome.  That clip will be followed by some seasonal goodie – right now we’re about to celebrate Mother’s Day, and I can’t help but laugh hysterically every time at this Mother’s Day clip by Barats and Barretta.  Then we’ll showcase some musical favorite.  Currently we’re enjoying some Rage Against the Machine.  Don’t worry, all music videos will have the "Wiebe Seal of Approval" for lyrical content, etc.  This song just rocks, along with all their other ones. (which can’t be played because they drop some #@$% and &*^%.  But other than that, they’re pretty rad.)  Man, I love RATM!  Then, we’ll have the remaining videos be from the family library.  Currently, the most recent one is the one of Micah sleep-walking his way through life.  As new videos are made available, they’ll go here in chronological order.
So, there you have it.  The four of you can at least follow the chaos, even if you don’t understand it.
Enjoy!  Or die tryin’…

In Honor of Earth Day…

… I resolve to:
  • Fill my Suburban with cheap Arco gas and drive really fast.
  • Start a tire fire in my fireplace.
  • Burn ants with a magnifying glass (we actually did this yesterday!)
  • Cut down that ugly tree in the backyard… then burn it.
  • Throw my empty Pepsi can in the garbage.
  • Leave the faucet on the entire time I brush my teeth.
  • Dig a large hole and fill it with diapers, styrofoam cups, and computer monitors.
  • Under-inflate my tires.
  • Dismantle my catalytic converter.
  • Poke holes in the ozone.
  • Use plastic bags.
  • Invent ways to melt the Polar Ice Caps.
  • Walk around WITHOUT sunscreen.
  • Leave the lights on.
  • Increase, Buy New, Throw Away.

Happy Earth Day!  Bunch of hippies…

Response to a Friend

Awhile ago, a friend and I got into a discussion about whether people can be saved WITHOUT the name of Jesus.  You know the argument: what happens to the guy deep in the heart of Africa – is he just destined for hell, unless someone comes and shares the gospel with him?  My answer is that yes, he is condemned to hell unless he hears and accepts the Gospel.  This isn’t just what I think, it’s what the Apostle Paul says in a few spots, and the Apostle Peter says in Acts 4:12. 


Here’s another perspective on this topic from the folks at Desiring God: 


Desiring God Blog

Adoration that Offends

Posted: 21 Apr 2009 11:50 PM PDT

(Author: Tyler Kenney)

There is no other name [than Jesus]
by which men can be saved.

These words from Acts 4:12 filled the screen in worship as we sang "There Is No Other Name." And it struck me again how incredibly exclusive they are.

I thought to myself, "Man, what a strong thing to say! In singing this, I’m immediately dismissing every other religion in the world. If they could hear me, no doubt I’d offend billions of people."

Paul commands the Corinthians,

Give no offense to Jews or to Greeks or to the church of God, just as I try to please everyone in everything I do, not seeking my own advantage, but that of many, that they may be saved. (1 Corinthians 10:32-33)

So why would I sing something in worship to Christ that I know is causing others (who I want to be saved!) to be offended?

Here’s why:

Offense is only one result of my singing, not the aim. I’m not singing in order to make other people upset. Nor am I trying to gloat over them or "seek my own advantage."

We sing "no other name" because it is the truth. And we sing it with joy because it glorifies our Savior. It is a beautiful expression of his worth and our love for him. And to refrain from singing it so as not to offend others would instead be an offense to him.

We show more love for others than we do for Christ if we don’t say that his is the only name by which men can be saved. And that’s wrong! Jesus is our first love.

We shouldn’t stop singing humble, honest lyrics to our Savior that happen to offend others. But with our singing, we must also spread the good news that no one needs to remain offended. God is still gathering a choir of people reconciled to him from every tribe and tongue.

Caught off guard

Before there was "American Idol", England had "Pop Idol".  Before there was "America’s Got Talent", there was "Britain’s Got Talent".  And, just like in our "American Idol", the pompous ass Simon tries to intimidate people while he’s on "Britain’s Got Talent".  Thankfully, there are time’s where he’s wrong, and someone that doesn’t look like they can do anything, shocks the world… and even the great Simon. 
Unfortunately, I can’t embed the video here, so you’ll actually have to click on a link for once.  Enjoy:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9lp0IWv8QZY