Saturday, March 17, 2012

bible story books.

We have a number of bible storybooks in our house that we read every night.   Not all the books every night, but we rotate through them.  there are things that I like in each one, and things that I don't like.

The lad's favourite BY FAR is the Big Picture Story bible

And I have to admit, I like this book too.  it has big pictures, simple text and sets out to do what it wants to do.. it presents the big picture of what the bible is doing.. setting out God's love story to us and how Jesus in woven throughout it.  From Amazon's page.
Presents the big picture of the Bible to children ages 2-7 through easy-to-read stories and striking illustrations. Now includes an audio reading of the book. No child is too young to begin learning about the greatest love story of all-Gods love for his people, as portrayed in the Bible. David Helm and Gail Schoonmaker have together created a colorful book of Bible stories written especially for children ages 2-7. Rather than simply retelling portions of the Bible, this book presents the big picture-the unified story running through the Old and New Testaments. Twenty-six stories together form parts of this big picture. Simply written and beautifully illustrated, this book teaches children the Bibles whole story so they can begin to appreciate the fulfillment of Gods promise to his people.
My only fault in it is that I sometimes want there to be more details.  But that is not this books' aim.  It is presenting the big picture of God's love toward us and his attitude toward people turning away from him.   God's love for his people is VERY clear to see in this book. 

Then we have the Jesus Storybook Bible

now this book is one that I really like.   It tells the story of the Bible in a fairy tale like way.  Amazon has this to say:
With beautiful 4-color artwork throughout, this Bible storybook for children ages 6 and under uses a traditional storytelling format, with a fairytale flavor, to help children learn more about Jesus.
A bone I pick with most storybook bibles is their lack of accuracy  and I do NOT have that bone to pick with this book. it is well-written. But the lad, though he likes listening as I read it, just isn't as keen on this book.   And though it is marketed for the under 6 crowd, I honestly think it's for older children in how it is written.    Good book, love listening to it on CD.

 My first bible.

This was the lad's very first bible story book and one that we both have very much enjoyed.   Perfect for when he was little, the stories are short, they are accurate without going into too much detail.  Bible stories from both the old and new testament, with a fair amount of variety.

we have on occasion read from "classic bible stories".

Short stories, decent illustrations, I like looking at the pictures with the lad and asking questions about them.  Like what does the picture make you think the story might be about?  What people do think it will be about? What are the people doing?   And then we read the stories.   Some "poetic" license is taking which sometimes makes me go hmm....and sometimes we'll look up things in a REAL bible to get the accurate information.

"Bible Stories for Children"  by Brimax Books. 

I have to admit that I found this book laid out differently than most bible story books.   Instead of being broken up into stories, it's divided into characters.   It has review pages at the each section.   Overall not a bad book.   More of a teaching/review book than a bible story book.

"brave Believers" is a bible story book put out by Thomas Nelson.   

Once I figured out how this story bible was laid out I decided I liked the concept.  It would give a short synopsis of a biblical event and then over the next few pages expand upon it.   I very much struggle with some of the poetic license taken in this book and would correct errors made in it.  Mostly it was how one interprets events as opposed to blatant untruth.  Scriptural references make this very easy to do though so I don't let that detract...and it's always good to show a child where to go to find truth if you wonder about what you are being taught, even if its from other believers.

Anyways, these are the bible story books that we've used over the past while.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Homosexuality and RCA

two good articles by Kevin DeYoung.  

Homosexuality and the RCA: A Call for Action, Consistency, and Faithfulness (Part 1)

Homosexuality and the RCA: A Call for Action, Consistency, and Faithfulness (Part 2)

Good articles to make you think.

Must say that I agree with him.

It's time to stop "dialoguing" and just make a decision  and let the fall out be what it is.

NOTE: I do not have a problem with homosexual persons.   But as a believer in the Lord I firmly hold to the model of what God is to the church, is what a husband is to his wife.   And two men or two women can't model this properly.   and yes, I know it can be argued that male/female marriages don't often mirror God's intent properly either...but at least they have a better chance at it.    It's the deliberateness of turning from scriptural truth and historical church truth that is at issue.   Not the love of the person who struggles (or chooses not to struggle).

 Third part in the series

 An Overture Regarding Homosexuality and the RCA

I have to admit, I read through the list of all the folks contravening synod policy and I'm wondering why they aren't being disciplined. 

part four  

Does the Heidelberg Catechism Have Anything to Say About Homosexuality?

understanding the history and times of documents being written in valuable.

Thursday, March 01, 2012

Day to Day - I Kings 2:1-4

Using as a base for devotions, Day by Day by Charles Swindoll.

I Kings 2:1-4 (NIV)is the passage for today and it reads as follows: 
1 When the time drew near for David to die, he gave a charge to Solomon his son.
 2 “I am about to go the way of all the earth,” he said. “So be strong, act like a man, 3 and observe what the LORD your God requires: Walk in obedience to him, and keep his decrees and commands, his laws and regulations, as written in the Law of Moses. Do this so that you may prosper in all you do and wherever you go 4 and that the LORD may keep his promise to me: ‘If your descendants watch how they live, and if they walk faithfully before me with all their heart and soul, you will never fail to have a successor on the throne of Israel.’ 

wow!   it's that a great promise?   Live for God and God will help you prosper and he will keep his promises.

I can understand from this verse how the prosperity gospel came to be.   Do right, and God will help you prosper.

The thing is... it's rather hard to do right all the time.
God helping us prosper isn't a given.

But putting that aside...Here is David, he's about to die, and therefore he wants to live last instructions, or a good guide to life, to his inheriting child.
  1. Be Strong
  2. Act like a man
  3. Observe what the Lord your God requires
  4. Walk in obedience to God
  5. Keep his decrees and his commands, his laws, his regulations - as written in the Law of Moses
  6. Remember God's promise to me: 
 If your descendants watch how they live, and if they walk faithfully before me with all their heart and soul, you will never fail to have a successor on the throne of Israel.
If Solomon does this, then God may prosper in all him do and wherever he goes. 

For Solomon to do this he will need to know well God's word.  He will need to stay in close communication with God.  Because THAT is how one follows the Lord God.   By knowing him well and desiring after him.   He will need to be different and stand out as one who loves God.

But we know that Solomon became influenced by the world around him.
He allowed things he shouldn't have.   He didn't stay true to what he should have.

My challenge before me is NOT to be so influenced by the world around me and the desires of my own heart, but to be more influenced by the Love that God has for me.

This is Charles Swindoll's challenge to us as well
"Start modeling the truth...the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help you God.   Think truth.  Confess truth.  Face Truth.  Love truth.  Pursue truth.  Walk truth.  Talk truth.  Ash, that lost one!   That's a good place to begin.   From this day forward, deliberately, consciously, and conscientiously speak the truth.  Start practicing gut-level authenticity."

Christmas Gift Idea I'm thinking...

Supplies needed

  • Etching cream
  • Glasses
  • Self-adhesive stencils

  • Stick adhesive stencils onto glass.
  • Apply etching cream onto stencil with a foam brush
  • Leave it alone for 10 minutes.
  •  Wash off etching cream and remove stencil.
 Wash glass and enjoy!