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  • Samuel at Gilgal

    This year I will be sharing brief excerpts from the articles, sermons, and books I am currently reading. My posts will not follow a regular schedule but will be published as I find well-written thoughts that should be of interest to maturing Christian readers. Whenever possible, I encourage you to go to the source and read the complete work of the author.

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  • Recommended Reading

Can Freedom Exist Without Christianity?

Chuck Colson

In the words of Chuck Colson:

“[W]hy is religious freedom such a concern to us as Christians? Freedom of religion is called the first freedom for a reason. Our Founding Fathers recognized that without freedom of conscience, no other freedom can be guaranteed. Christians, in fact, are the greatest defenders of religious freedom and human liberty — not just for Christians, but for all people. Compare religious freedom in those countries with a Christian heritage to the state of religious freedom in Islamic nations, Communist countries, and Buddhist and Hindu nations, and you will see my point. The reason that Christians place such a high value on human freedom is that freedom itself is part of the creation account in the Bible. God made humans in His image. He gave us a free will to choose to love, follow, and obey Him, or to follow our own way. That free will, given us before the Fall, is part of human nature itself. Perhaps more than anything else, it was this understanding of individual freedom that turned me into the kind of patriot who would willingly give his life for his country. It was the words of the Declaration of Independence that inspired me to join the Marines: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.’ So this question of human freedom goes to the very heart of who we are as Christians and as Americans.”

Read more. . . .

George Washington On God And Government

Quoting George Washington:

“It is the duty of all Nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favor.”

Jefferson On Congress And Power

Thomas Jefferson

Quoting Thomas Jefferson:

“They are not to do anything they please to provide for the general welfare…. [G]iving a distinct and independent power to do any act they please which may be good for the Union, would render all the preceding and subsequent enumerations of power completely useless. It would reduce the whole instrument to a single phrase, that of instituting a Congress with power to do whatever would be for the good of the United States; and as they sole judges of the good or evil, it would be also a power to do whatever evil they please.”

John Calvin: Theologian Of The Holy Spirit

John Calvin

From the writing of Eifion Evans:

In an address on “John Calvin the theologian,” B. B. Warfield affirmed that Calvin’s interest “was most intense in the application to the sinful soul of the salvation wrought out by Christ … Its effect … has been to constitute Calvin pre-eminently the theologian of the Holy Spirit. ” Warfield elaborates on the claim in this way:

“In the same sense in which we may say that the doctrine of sin and grace dates from Augustine, the doctrine of satisfaction from Anselm, the doctrine of justification by faith from Luther-we must say that the doctrine of the work of the Holy Spirit is a gift from Calvin to the church.”

He proceeds to trace Calvin’s outworking of the Spirit’s work in the Institutes, from the inner witness of the Spirit, through regeneration in its widest sense of sinful man’s recovery by God, to the ongoing ministry of the Spirit in the believer. He concludes that “above everything else, it is the sense of the sovereign working of salvation by the almighty power of the Holy Spirit which characterizes all Calvin’s thought of God.”

Read more here. . . .

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