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Baptist Creed on Bible Translation /

These original languages [Biblical Hebrew and Greek] are not known to all the people of God, who have a right to and an interest in the Scriptures, and who are commanded in the fear of God to read and search them. They are therefore to be translated into the common language of every nation to which they come, so that (with the Word of God living richly in all) people may worship God in an acceptable manner, and through patience and comfort of the Scriptures may have hope.

— Baptist Confession of Faith (1689), updated English by Andrew Kerkham (2001)

This is the final test of the Bible’s clarity: Can people read our lives and see the life of God in us? This is the perspicuity that God has given us in the Bible, a clarity that is meant to be readable in part through the unfinished lives of those who read and trust it.

Mark Labberton, “The Bible’s Clarity Should Be Evident in Our Lives,” Christianity Today

“Every Christian here is either a missionary or an impostor” /

Spurgeon wrote a short sermon on 1 Peter 2:7: “For you who believe, he is precious.” Here is his conclusion:

Every Christian here is either a missionary or an impostor. Recollect that. You either try to spread abroad the kingdom of Christ, or else you do not love him at all. It cannot be that there is a high appreciation of Jesus and a totally silent tongue about him. Of course I do not mean by that, that those who use the pen are silent: they are not. And those who help others to use the tongue, or spread that which others have written, are doing their part well. But that man who says, “I believe in Jesus,” but does not think enough of Jesus ever to tell another about him, by mouth, or pen, or tract, is an impostor. … Be wise in your generation, and speak of him in fitting ways and at fitting times, and so in every place proclaim the fact that Jesus is most precious to your soul.

—C.H. Spurgeon, “A Sermon and a Reminiscence,” from the Sword and Trowel, March 1873, www.spurgeon.org/s_and_t/srmn1873.php.

“Teach them to yearn…” /

If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up the men to gather wood, divide the work, and give orders. Instead, teach them to yearn for the vast and endless sea.

—Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

From Paul Boekell at Story Warren.

We Can’t Without It /

If we were given the Word so “that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work,” then we can’t teach disciples from all nations to observe all that Jesus has commanded without it (2 Tim 3:16–17, Matt 28:20).

Jonathan, “Your Calling Is to Proclaim the Word,” (May 19, 2015)

Before maturing disciples, we must teach the gospel in its fullness. A kingdom gospel will produce kingdom citizens.

Zach Lee, “The Secret to Making Kingdom Citizens.”

“Start with the word”: Content-First Design /

An interdisciplinary convergence… what advice is both good for web/game design and missionary strategy? There needs to be a shift “of working content first (conversation design) instead of structure first (system design).”

So I started practicing what the video game industry preached (and what the advertising industry leaders like George Lois preached before them): start with the word.

Steph Hay, “Content-First Design”

Start with the word. Preach it.

“The danger is that of coming to love the prison”: C.S. Lewis on Masturbation /

For me the real evil of masturbation would be that it takes an appetite which, in lawful use, leads the individual out of himself to complete (and correct) his own personality in that of another (and finally in children and even grandchildren) and turns it back; sends the man back into the prison of himself, there to keep a harem of imaginary brides.

And this harem, once admitted, works against his ever getting out and really uniting with a real woman. For the harem is always accessible, always subservient, calls for no sacrifices or adjustments, and can be endowed with erotic and psychological attractions which no real woman can rival. Among those shadowy brides he is always adored, always the perfect lover: no demand is made on his unselfishness, no mortification ever imposed on his vanity.

In the end, they become merely the medium through which he increasingly adores himself…

After all, almost the main work of life is to come out of ourselves, out of the little, dark prison we are all born in. Masturbation is to be avoided as all things are to be avoided which retard this process. The danger is that of coming to love the prison.

From a letter C.S. Lewis sent in 1956 to Keith Masson. Quoted in “‘In You, O Porn, I Take Refuge’: 3 Reasons Pornography Is Sinful” at Covenant Eyes.

A book is alive when it reads you.

“The printed page is a missionary…” /

The printed page is a missionary that can go anywhere and do so at minimum cost. It enters closed lands and reaches all strata of society. It does not grow weary. It needs no furlough. It lives longer than any missionary. It never gets ill. It penetrates through the mind to the heart and conscience. It has and is producing results everywhere. It has often lain dormant yet retained its life and bloomed years later.

—Samuel Zwemer