Arminian Today

A Jesus-Centered Arminian Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Family

Why Did My Blog Slow Down?

There was a time when blogging was supreme to me.  I would go to work and think about blog posts.  I even kept notes on my iPhone to help me remember blog posts.  I would listen to a podcast of someone and I would always be thinking, “What can I do with this on my blog?”  Those days are gone.

These days I just work.  I still listen to lots of podcasts (mainly preaching and theology but sports are in there as well).  I read my Bible but try to just read it for me and for learning more about God then just looking for a post.  I still read lots of books (special thanks to a subscriber who recently sent me several good books to read) but I just read for me now and not for blogging.

I am thankful for the number of Arminian bloggers I see now.  When I first started this blog back in 2006-2007, there were few Arminian blogs.  In fact, I started my blog with the specific purpose of defining and defending Arminianism.  I saw a need and thought I would add my voice to it.  Having never been a Calvinist, I knew that many people really didn’t understand Arminianism and what we believe.  So I started blogging about theology from an Arminian perspective.  Along the way I have learned much and have made some great friends.  I am proud to see so many Arminians now out there blogging and spreading the gospel (and not just Arminianism).

I am not quitting.  I want to say that up front.  But I have slowed down.  Way down.  Between work (55-70 hours a week) and my family, I have little time to devote to blogging like I use to.  And to be honest, I don’t feel qualified to talk about theology like I use to.  I see so much sin in my heart and I hate it but its a reality.  That’s why I don’t blast guys who struggle, people who sin.  I sin.

Thats said, I still take theology serious.  I do still love Jesus.  I am not perfect (ask my wife and she’ll likely write a book for you).  I struggle.  I want to be godly.  I hate sin.  I long for Christ to return.  I believe we still need revival.  I still long to see people truly saved.  I am tired.

So I’ll still be blogging but that explains why the slowdown.  I pray you’ll forgive me.

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Written by The Seeking Disciple

06/17/2016 at 12:44 PM

Short Thoughts on Sending My Sons to a Calvinist College

I am a long ways from having my sons ready for college.  I have 9 more years for my first to enter into college.  However, the thought crossed my mind today about college.  I attended a conservative, evangelical college that has since changed in many ways.  When I first entered college, I came to my school by default as I wanted to attend a Bible college in Florida but changed my mind at the last second.  I dreaded my first year at college as the students around me were very shallow, few were seeking God, and the school was largely Calvinistic.  However, I persevered and graduated and did enjoy my time in college though I would not go there if I could do it all over again.

As I ponder this, I question would I send my sons to a Calvinist college?  I went into my school an Arminian and came out a stronger Arminian.  I was not one of these college boys who liked to debate theology.  I simply went to classes, worked at night at UPS, and spent my other free time hanging out with my church friends and seeking God.  I did not spend my time reading Arminius or Wesley or Calvin.  I didn’t care about the issue.  All I knew was that I was saved, hungry for Jesus, wanting to use my life to exalt Him however that looked.  I met some other international students who were prayer warriors and they would be my friends at college for their passion for Jesus and not for their theology (in fact I don’t remember once in four years discussing Arminianism or Calvinism with them).

However, I had a friend (who is now with the Lord after dying from cancer) who, like me, came to our college as an Arminian (he was Nazarene).  By graduation, he had embraced Calvinism.  He graduated and attended Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY where his Calvinism was rooted and grounded.  I do rejoice that my friend remained faithful to Jesus (though initially he embraced Calvinism for their teaching on the security of the believer because of besetting sins in his life).  He later pastored a couple of Baptist churches where he preached Calvinism.  Again, I praise God that my brother died in Jesus and not in sin.  In this case, his Calvinism drew him closer to Jesus as he grew sick.  I rejoice that my brother was faithful to Christ till the end.

Here are my thoughts on the issue.  Obviously, neither Arminianism nor Calvinism is a salvation issue. I know some will contend that it is.  I don’t.  I believe on can be an Arminian and be saved (praise God!).  One can be a Calvinist and be saved (though barely!).  In reality, only Jesus saves us.  If my boys love Jesus and that is evident, I will be a happy man.  Of course, if my boys did decide to attend a Calvinist school, I would simply pray over them and debate them until I prove to them that I am right!

The bottom line, in all seriousness, is that I want my boys to love Christ.  I want them to go where He wants them to go.  If the Lord wants my boys to not go to college, that is fine with me.  If He wants them to go to the mission field after they finish school, I am okay with that.  I just want my boys to exalt Jesus.  I pray daily for them to be saved and for them to live lives that glorify Christ.  I often remind them that as they grow older, my sins will become more obvious.  I am not a perfect man though I strive for holiness (Hebrews 12:14).  I remind my boys that as they see my imperfections, may they always remember that I am saved by grace and it is grace alone that will take us to heaven.  I want my boys eyes to be on Jesus and Jesus alone.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

12/23/2013 at 5:34 PM

A Short History of Public Education

One of the failures of the modern Church is that we have so taught people that if they come to a Sunday morning gathering or a Sunday night Bible talk or a Wednesday night family night then that will ensure that people will hold firmly to the core doctrines of the faith.  The problems with such a view are many.  First, most churches in the United States these days seem to not be teaching sound doctrine and most avoid doctrine at all.  They seem to hold to the idea that if you don’t teach doctrine than a) there will be no divisions since doctrine divides and b) they will make their “seekers” feel welcomed as they won’t hear a dry, boring, lifeless, pointless message about a doctrine.  Of course, such thinking produces many false converts who believe they are saved because they said a prayer or believe in God or attend this church.

The problem also is that since the average evangelical doesn’t spend much time in prayer (less than 2 minutes per week) and even less time in the Bible, the world fills their minds with worldly thinking.  Sin, compromise, visual images, violence, sex, language, postmodernism, relativism, etc. all are what people are filling their minds with and not the Word of God.  Even in solid churches where the Bible is taught, if there is no one-on-one discipleship taking place (Matthew 28:20; Hebrews 3:12-13) then it follows that people fill their minds with the world.  When you are only spending a few hours a week with disciples of Christ but are constantly in the world, it is inevitable that you’ll sooner or later begin to reason like they do.  We become like those around us (Proverbs 4:26-27).

Take public schools for example.  You might be shocked to learn that it was Martin Luther who first proposed state funded public schools where children could come to learn.  Luther advocated towns paying for children to come and be commonly taught in one building.  Luther believed that the children could then be taught Christianity as well as reading, history, math, etc.

Luther’s ideas were passed on to others during the Reformation.  When the Puritans came to America in the 1600’s, they set up a public school system where children could be taught how to read by using the Bible.  The Puritans wanted all their people reading the Bible and so they wanted to teach all their children to read.  They recognized that some parents were more trained than others on how to teach their children to read and so they asked them to teach the common children to read.  The schools were all free and anyone could send their children to them for a few hours a day while the families worked.  This ensured that the children were learning to read while work was able to get done.

Eventually the American public school system came into play.  Towns set up schools and funded them with their own money.  When taxes begin to be leveed, the towns begin to tax the people to pay for the schools.  The modern public school system today is a beast.  It is a monstrous federal government agency that is very liberal.  The complete separation of Church and State ensures today that the ideas of Luther and the Puritans, to teach children the Word of God, are gone.  In fact, when I was in public school I actually was told by a teacher to put my Bible away when I had it out reading it.  I refused citing my freedom to read it if I had done my school work.  She stated that because of the separation of Church-State, I could not have a Bible out.  I went to my high school principal who stood with me and said I was free to read whatever I wanted to on my free time.

Public schools are full of sin.  I know that not all students are bad nor are all teachers but let us face the fact that Christianity is not loved in public schools.  No religion is.  I am not advocating that Christianity be the main reason children attend public school but public schools begin with that idea in mind.  Luther wanted public education for the purpose of evangelism.  The Puritans believed that public education would help all people read and apply the Bible.  Today, pubic schools do none of that and largely are not very good at teaching basic skills either.

I am proud that my wife and I home school our children.  We have taken responsibility for our children’s education.  Some people reply, “I don’t have that luxury.  My wife and I have to work.”  My advice would be to reassess your focus.  If your lifestyle requires you to have both parents working, step back and downsize.  Your children (and their salvation) should be your focus.  Public schools are not teaching your children how to be better disciples of Jesus.  If anything, due to the reality that we spend so little time in the presence of the Lord, public schools corrupt our children.  1 Corinthians 15:33 says, “Do not be deceived: ‘Bad company ruins good morals.'”  

One final comment.  I find it humorous when people say that home schooled children are lacking because they have less social interaction than public school children.  Do I keep my children in a cave or something?  My boys are all fine and can talk just as well as any other children.  We regularly attend church meetings where my boys play with other children (mostly home schooled children there too) and we meet with other home school families on a regular basis.  My family is associated with a home school group which includes about 50 families and we have field trips, sports teams, etc.  My boys are learning and they are studying the Bible at the same time.  That is comforting to my soul.  I would gladly work for that.

A final argument is often that if we take our children out of the public schools, who would be there to be a light to them (Matthew 5:13-16)?  Here is my answer.  First of all, salvation is of the Lord and God will save sinners as the church goes out to preach the gospel in all places (Mark 16:15-16).  Simply because no Christian is in a public school does not mean that God will not send His people to other places where those children will be to preach the gospel.  Secondly, most public school children I know are corrupted by the sinners than vise versa.  I know there are exceptions to that rule and I personally was saved while in public school (11th grade) and sought to evangelize my school through Bible studies, prayer, tracts, etc. but most children are not that bold (sad to say).  Let’s face it, most children are followers than leaders and its easier to be a Demas (2 Timothy 4:10) than a Luke (2 Timothy 4:11).  The idea that we need to leave our children in a public school to be a light often is based on the parent’s unwillingness to do what is necessary to ensure a better education complete with the Bible.

And those are my thoughts.

Written by The Seeking Disciple

10/26/2012 at 11:29 AM

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