Free remission of sins is preached to all countries and kingdoms. All the faithful in every nation under heaven are through Christ received into the grace and favour of God the Father. All have received in great abundance the gift of the Holy Ghost. All have prophesied. All have known the Lord. — Heinrich Bullinger
After a recent serious injury caused by a lawn dart, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reissued its warning that lawn darts are banned and should be destroyed. Effective on December 19, 1988, CPSC banned the sale of all lawn darts in the United States.
Let the reader understand.
Politicians love sending ‘thoughts and prayers’ to people who are suffering. But does it make any sense? Frankly, no.
First, if thoughts don’t lead to acts, then they are not only pointless they are worthless. Thoughts which are followed by deeds are thoroughly sensible but bare thoughts, alone, are the Eunuchs of intellectual life. And as Kierkegaard reminded us Eunuchs may know what needs to be done, but they can’t ever manage to do it.
And second, the prayers of politicians (and most people, let’s just be honest with ourselves for a moment) are similarly useless. Why? Because God doesn’t hear the prayers of the godless- We know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His will, He hears him. (Jn. 9:31). To be sure, the ‘fervent effectual prayer of a righteous person avails much’ (Epistle of James) but no one with any good sense at all would describe any American politician as ‘righteous’. They are all corrupt, self seeking, evil.
So, thoughts and prayers? Keep them to yourself. They are useless when they come from the godless.
It is not good to honour one who is a sinner. (Sir. 10:23)
On the 14th of February, in the year 1568, Heinrich Bullinger stood before the assembled legislators and denounced the extreme poverty resulting in Zurich and the surrounding villages in the Canton because of excessive interest rates being charged the poorest of the poor.
The Massnahmen Gegen den Wucher addressed the pressing issues of high unemployment and high interest rates- and Bullinger demanded that the government do something to reign in the usurers.
Theologians today, incredibly silent on the issues which troubled Bullinger and his colleagues in Zurich, would do well to read this tractate. It’s perfectly applicable, theologically, to today and to our corrupt bankers and weak, cowering, fearful government.
Nations that put themselves first above all else must sooner or later collide with Christ & His people. – Karl Barth, reflecting on Nazism
Via Mike Skinner
UPDATE: And the winner is- BEN BROWN! Send me your address, Ben. And thanks to all who entered.
I’ve an extra copy of this new volume sent along by the publisher and I’m giving it to the person who 1- Tells me in comments why they deserve it. 2- Lives in the continental US. 3- And is randomly selected from all those who describe their worthiness to have it in comments (see 1 above). You have only hours to enter. So get your entry in by midnight Eastern time.
So, while he lectured on Deuteronomy, he said
The papists have represented God as a very swift Avenger if anyone, at the impulse of the devil, had harmed a cleric. Thus they also made out of St. Anthony, Sebastian, Valentine, and Roch a sort of Baal Peor for the nurturing of their stomachs.
You Won’t be getting a card from Luther on Valentine’s Day. Don’t expect one. He’s not interested in celebrating your Baal.