Friday, October 28, 2011

D A Carson comments on Australia & Individualism

I stumbled across this snippet by Don Carson, commenting on Australia. Thought I'd file it here...
But a very open country like Australia, in which the “cut down the tall poppy syndrome” flourishes, allows plenty of freedom for gospel ministry but really dislikes individuals who stand out too strongly—and it too is not very hospitable to the gospel. Isn’t something to be said in favor of individualism?

Thursday, October 20, 2011

NT Worship & 1 Corinthians 14:24-25

The debate has resurfaced again about the propriety of the use of the word "worship" to describe things the church does when it gathers. This time it was triggered because some Sydney Anglican Evangelical types invited a Sovereign Grace Ministries type to speak at a TWIST conference. The trail began when my wife saw something in a friend's blog, and you can see some of the resurfacing here and here. Part of the argument is around the use (or lack thereof) of the Greek word proskynein which is often translated in English as worship. The argument basically says that because we don't see proskynein used in association with the assemblies of the church, therefore we shouldn't use the English word worship to describe singing or other activities in the assemblies, or to describe the assemblies in general. Pardon my disrespectfulness in all this, but it just seems like a no-brainer. Apart from the issues of semantic range of overlap between words in different languages, how odd it seems that someone can argue from silence that Christians don't worship God when they gather, even though the Bible does give examples of and exhortations to worship by individuals and assemblies in the OT, Jesus is worshipped in the Gospels, Paul as an apostle can still worship in Jerusalem (Acts 24:11), Jesus is to be worshipped by angels (Hebrews 1:6), and there are the great assemblies of worship in the book of Revelation (eg 4:10, 5:14, 7:11, etc). And on top of that, in the midst of one of the few sections which specifically talk about what happens when Christians gather in their Lord's Day assemblies, 1 Corinthians 14:24-25 talks about an unbeliever coming amongst them, being convinced by the believers, and then responding in worship, presumably a very fitting response amongst those other believers. And yet it is as if some want to say that unbeliever would be the only one worshipping because all the believers certainly wouldn't be worshipping during one of their assemblies??? Anyhow, for some reason this inspired me to sketch a cartoon about this passage and here it is :P