March 5, 2015

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Islamic Atrocities, the “Narrative of Redemption” and Christmas

The events in Sydney over the last 24 hours have not ruined Christmas. Nothing can ruin Christmas - for the coming of Jesus into the World is greater than any other event. If anything, the deaths of 3 people in the Lindt Café only serves to demonstrate just how wonderful and necessary Christmas is.

[Bumped For Very Obvious Reasons] 8.5 Things I Rejoice In This Post-Election Day

5) This isn’t the Episcopal Church. Our country is far juster, far more interested in the rule of law, far more stable, far more popular, far less vicious, and far more conservative. It is completely within our power as conservatives—with God’s help—to transform this country’s political landscape if we so choose. It will be very hard and very long. The next two years will be appallingly painful. Every week or month, we’ll be reminded of the judgement of God—and our challenge will be not to get angry, or despairing, or inactive, but rather to humble ourselves all over again, repent, acknowledge the horrible consequences of our compromises, corruption, passivity, and loss of principle, and continue turning away from the wrong path and seeking the right one.

Restarting the Game: Archbishop Welby Attempts To Hit The Reset Button

It’s not a question of “how will the Communion divide”—that division, albeit internal, has already occurred.  The further question is not “how can we all live together in the midst of our profound disagreements” but is rather “what is to be done with the Provinces which have engaged in intrinsically communion-dividing actions?”

Got Ice Water?

The idea that we shouldn’t be able to indulge in something silly like the ice-water challenge because millions of African children are dying of thirst, says nothing about the wastefulness of Americans, and everything about the utter inability of Africa to take care of itself.

The utilitarian unity of burning at the stake and abortion

The Church thought it was sparing heretics eternal torment by burning them at the stake.  Abortionists tell us they are sparing people from miserable earthly lives.  Both ways, “It’s for their own good.”

Truro Rebirth Credited to Relationship Between the Rev. Baucum and Bishop Johnston


After more than ten years on the front lines of the Anglican wars, I have made a major change. This past Easter vigil, my family and I were confirmed in the Roman Catholic Church.

Is the Creed “the” Sufficient Standard of Orthodoxy?

The Creeds themselves, then, require obedience to Jesus Christ as the One Lord over all things. To profess the Creed but reject the word of God as revealed in the scriptures regarding marriage and sexuality is incoherent.

Stand Firm is 10 Years Old Today

In true Tom Sawyer fence-whitewashing style, I have minions who keep the site humming, while I sit in the shade chewing a blade of grass and complimenting them on their fine efforts.

Three Excuses for Bishop Salmon’s Inexcusable Invitation

Can you imagine what Paul might say to this kind of hair splitting? The Galatians respond to Paul’s letter: “Dear Paul, you wrote that the Judaizers are accursed and eternally condemned and that we ought not to listen to them because they teach a gospel that damns…but how about we let them preach to our pastors in training?

60 Theses on Real Integrity in the Anglican Church

The refusal to affirm a truth (particularly when it is a truth about God) is often just another way of denying it, but without taking responsibility for your denial. This is therefore a double dishonesty which only compounds the deceit.

“How am I gonna be an optimist about this?”

A modern city provides the visual for words evoking the historic catastrophe.  It can happen again, and that isn’t just a function of natural cycles.  There are moral and even supernatural forces in play.  There’s always a sense that Pompeii had it coming.  It’s like Sodom and Gomorrah for folks who don’t want to admit to that Old Testament God stuff.

A Declaration of Principles for Reconciliation

There are only two words to be spoken to false teachers: “repent” and “recant” along with the assurance that forgiveness and warm welcome await those who heed the call. We will not take part in the indaba process which results only in providing false teachings and false teachers with equal footing and equal voice alongside the teachings of Christ through his apostles

BREAKING: Welby names Tory Baucum as “Canterbury Preacher”

At Stand Firm we suspect there may be some who will question Tory’s “commitment to the present day reformation” given his willingness to affirm Johnston’s ministry. It will be viewed by them as a compromised commitment.

Walking and Talking

Let it be a small reminder of how hostile the world is to the Gospel, and a small reminder of what you’ve signed up for when you agreed to take up your cross. The world - in this case represented by gay activists and the media who kowtow to them - hates you. They hate your family, they hate your values, and they especially hate this Jesus.

Night Thoughts Away from Home during Christmas Season

I share readily in the town’s festive mood, smiling at perfect strangers and wishing them all “Merry Christmas.” What is it about Christmas that brings out the best in friends and strangers alike?

Grafton Appointment Exposes Massive Differences in the Anglican Church in Australia

The Week

The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

19 I recently posted the following on facebook after reading an article by Joyce Meyer that advises Christian readers to read the bible, pray, and then, “follow your heart.” I wrote (with perhaps a bit of…

Another Blow to States’ Rights

3 On February 25th, the Department published its final rule on the definition of spouse under FMLA and incorporated all material changes proposed under the NPRM. The final rule amends the regulatory definition of spouse under…

DioFW Statement on Property Case Ruling

11 As the kids today say, “Woop woop!”: On Monday, March 2, 2015, the 141st District Court granted our Motion for Partial Summary Judgment regarding all diocesan property, with the exception of All Saints’, Fort Worth,…

ECUSA and Freedom of Association: a Showdown Is Due

6 Litigation between the Episcopal Church (USA) and its parishes has been ongoing for more than fifteen years. It is a myth to say that the Church did not start any of the lawsuits: you can…

BREAKING: Fort Worth Wins Big

23 Details to follow, but Bishop Iker says: “We are grateful for the ruling in our favor. It’s clear that both church laws and Texas laws have been rightly applied to this dispute.” Here is a…

Abusing an Argument? Thinking Harder About Domestic Violence and the Church

1 In the last few weeks a bit of a debate has kicked off here in Sydney over the difficult question of domestic violence (“DV”) and our response as evangelicals, and particularly as Sydney Anglicans, to…

Open Movie Thread On A Particular List of Movies

3 It’s been a while since we had a shallow thread . . . so of course, I’m up to the challenge of offering something vacuous. I was looking over this list of Scorsese film influences—that…

Nobody wants to be a loser

1 My sermon for March 1, 2015 The Second Sunday in Lent Nobody wants to be a loser.  Peter sure didn’t.  When Jesus began to use…

Is Anglicanism “Catholic Lite”?

20 This is a short fifteen minute video in which I begin to explain some of the deep theological differences that divide reformed Anglicanism from the Roman Catholic Church. In this first video, I deal with…

The Death of the King of Ai

4 Joshua 8 brings us the story of the destruction of Ai and the execution of its King. After the earlier failed attempt, this time the people of Israel under Joshua are successful. The

Anatomy Lesson

16 Because college students have been sheltered all their lives from any information about sex, sexual behavior, or female anatomy (no information about any of these is available on the Internet, last time I checked, which…

SC Judge Makes Short Shrift of ECUSA’s Motion

22 As reported here, the Episcopal Church (USA) and its rump group in South Carolina filed a 182-page motion for reconsideration with Circuit Court Judge Diane S. Goodstein, asking her to reverse…

Quincy Court to TEC: “Plaintiffs Won—Quit Your Bad-Faith Maneuvers ... Now!”

20 On Friday, the trial court judge in the Quincy case issued a strongly worded order to TEC and its attorneys…

Fort Worth Case Argued before Judge Chupp

9 This morning the Hon. John Chupp, District Judge for the 141st District Court in Tarrant County, heard oral arguments in the case that the Texas Supreme Court last September remanded to him for trial. Both…


21 The last “word” of the headline is not the name of a town in Wales. It is, rather, an acronym for the clientele of one of the forms of “program housing” run by Wesleyan University…

Recent Comments

Andrew W - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

PS: the auto-parser doesn’t like the way I formatted my references above.  Trying an alternate form:  Phil 1:8-9; 2 Pet 1:5-7

Andrew W - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

The NT writers frequently connect “love” and “knowledge”: Phil 1:8-9, 2 Pet 1:5-7, other passages less explicitly.  Similar words, such as discernment, wisdom, and training, feature prominently.  The connection from mind to action is very…

Matt Kennedy - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

By the way, Joyce Meyer is definitely someone to be skeptical about:

Matt Kennedy - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

The argument I am making does not hinge on the meaning of “heart” in Jer 17. It rests primarily on those passages in the NT that address how the Christian ought to make decisions in…

ToAllTheWorld - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

If the heart is the “center of the self” then, as we sometimes say of the soul, it is comprised of intellect, will, and emotion.  Not only are our emotions untrustworthy, but so is our…

Matt Kennedy - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

Hi Pb re: “All this assumes that many people follow their emotions without reason and claim that they are following the will of God.” No assumption at all. Many do. re: “I would be against…

Pb - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

All this assumes that many people follow their emotions without reason and claim that they are following the will of God.  I would be against that, too. The mind is a useful servant but a…

Matt Kennedy - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

Hi Dr. Witt, I think we will probably end up disagreeing a bit. I think you are drawing a false dichotomy between knowing “how” and knowing “that”. I think one cannot know “how” unless one…

William Witt - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

Matt, I certainly agree with you that emotivism is a problem for Evangelicals of a pietist stripe. The solution is not reason rather than emotion, but wisdom. Wisdom is a matter of virtuous character; it…

Matt Kennedy - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

Hi Kay, thanks for the comment. I have addressed that question elsewhere…here’s a link:

Kay - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

The question I don’t see addressed here is how to discern the leading of the Holy Spirit.  The example about choosing a school seems to privilege the intellect, making the assumption that reading scripture and…

SC blu cat lady - DioFW Statement on Property Case Ruling

B. Hunter, I have never understood TEC’s policy of suing former members vs “mission” ( whatever that may be). Why they won’t just let these people go (whether parishes or dioceses)? I don’t know.

Matt Kennedy - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

Hi Dr. Witt, thanks for the comment I agree with you about the “heart as the center of the self”. This is true. So, I’ll grant that Jer 17 is not a specific allusion to…

William Witt - The Drunken Joy Ride of Emotion

Matt, I seldom post here, but here goes. You argument (I use that word purposely) rests on a fallacious equation between the Hebrew metaphor “heart,” and “emotion.” That works in modern English where “heart” has…

B. Hunter - Another Blow to States' Rights

Thank goodness the Republicans are standing up for this sort of thing, including defunding the Obama Administration’s illegal amnesty. What’s that?  The Republicans funded amnesty?  And they aren’t standing up for traditional marriage? *SIGH*.  What…

B. Hunter - DioFW Statement on Property Case Ruling

“Scorched Earth” policy brought to you by Shori and her band of merry liberals. I don’t know how folks who attend TEC’s general convention can swallow the amount of resources these lawsuits are consuming.  Of…