Book Alert: “Handle with Care!” – Dr. J. Kennedy

Handle-with-care-kennedyA few months ago I was made aware of a new book produced by Dr. Julian Kennedy and today I want to notify you of it while reserving fuller review for later (cf. note below).

The book is Handle with Care! A Biblical and Reformed Guide to Sexuality for Young People (Wipf & Stock, 2017; paper & epub, 114 pp.).

You will find this summary of the book at the publisher’s site:

God’s good gift of sexuality has been corrupted since the fall of man into sin so that man in his depravity is not able to use it for God’s glory and for his own good. Sex between unmarried (fornication), adultery, including divorce and remarriage, and homosexuality are accepted as normal in modern society and young people, even Christian young people, are being influenced by this Satanic lie that “if it feels good–do it!” This booklet is sent out with the prayer that it will save many young people from heartache and the curse that these serious sexual sins will bring on them. There is the good way, the biblical or reformed way for living chastely as a single person, finding and courting a mate, and marrying and staying faithful to that mate. This booklet has been a long time since inception to publication! First conceived thirty years ago, very few copies of an older version were produced by Covenant Keepers for young people in Singapore in 2011. The original has been substantially expanded by quotations from Protestant Reformed Church ministers.

In his “Introduction” the author offers us these important thoughts on this timely topic:

This booklet aims to explain the truth about sex, love and marriage from the view of the Reformed* Faith of Scripture. God alone, who instituted the first marriage, can tell us what love really is and how sex in marriage can be used for the greatest benefit. Much will be said in this booklet that contradicts the popular notions
about sex that are portrayed in the glossy popular magazines, newspapers and on TV soaps, in films, or in novels of today, where people hop in and out of bed and of marriages, with sad and destructive consequences to themselves and any children involved. God knows that building a lasting relationship on the rock of scriptural truth will mean it will stand in the storms of life. Prevention is better than cure, so practice godly courtship and marriage and save yourself from much heartache and many problems. The statistics on cohabitation, fornication, divorce, adultery, teenage pregnancy and homosexuality even among professing believers show how God’s instructions are being ignored and it is my prayer that this booklet will help many to find God’s best in love, marriage and sex.

We thank Dr. Kennedy for his contribution to the literature available on sexuality – rare because it is Reformed. Reformed because it is rooted in God’s Word (biblical!) and the Reformed confessions of the historic church.

Knowing a book’s contents help reveal its value. I trust as you review this content of Handle with Care! that you will see its value:

Part One: What God Says
Chapter 1
Dynamite!—Handle With Care | 3
Chapter 2
Battle for the Mind—Impure Thoughts | 5
Chapter 3
Why Wait? | 14
Chapter 4
Homosexuality | 18
Chapter 5
Two Become One | 22
Chapter 6
The Proper Basis and Purpose of Marriage | 25
Chapter 7
Singleness | 29

Part Two: The Facts of Life
Chapter 8
How Does Sex Start? | 39
Chapter 9
Men versus Women—What’s the Difference? | 41
Chapter 10
Boy Meets Girl | 44
Chapter 11
Friendships | 46

Part Three: Finding the Right Mate
Chapter 12
The Meaning of Love | 51
Chapter 13
Finding Your Help Meet | 55
Chapter 14
For Girls Only | 57
Chapter 15
Courtship, Dating and Right Relationships | 59
Chapter 16
The Wedding is Soon | 79
Chapter 17
Family Planning | 81

Appendix—The Reformed Faith: The Five Solas | 89

I have requested a review copy of this new title. When I have that in hand, I will be better able to make a more full evaluation of this book.

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TODAY! 4-6 p.m. ET – Radio Interview with Prof. David J. Engelsma on “Gospel Truth of Justification”

You may have remembered and listened in on previous interviews Chris Arnzen of “Iron Sharpens Iron” has had with Prof. David Engelsma (emeritus professor, PRC Seminary) about his books. This afternoon (only 1 hour away from now!) Chris will conduct another live interview with Prof. Engelsma, this time about his newest book, Gospel Truth of Justification (RFPA, 2017).

Below is the notice that the RFPA put out this week and again today as a reminder:

On Friday, September 1, Prof. David J. Engelsma will be interviewed by Christopher Arnzen on his radio program “Iron Sharpens Iron” from 4-6 pm EST.

The subject will be his recent book, Gospel Truth of Justification. You can go to the website www.ironsharpensironradio.com and click on live stream to tune in and listen from any device. The program can also be listened to by phone (563)999-9206, following the prompts and press #3 for Christian Radio.

Be sure to tune in Friday!

Now that the live interview is done, if you would like to listen to the interview as recorded, Chris A. has generously allowed it to be posted. You find the mp3 file here.

Source: Reformed Free Publishing Association — Radio Interview with Prof. David J. Engelsma on Gospel Truth of Justification

Lost Latin Commentary on the Gospels Rediscovered after 1,500 years

This special story was posted at The Conversation last week (August 23, 2017, by Hugh Houghton) and caught my attention. Though it may not be exciting to many, it is to me, since anything from the realm of books is of interest – especially rare, lost treasures such as this Latin commentary from the fourth century.

And yes, you may find scanned images of this rare book online as well as an English translation of it now available (see links in the story below).

Below you will find the beginning of the story; read the rest and visit the links at the link at the end.

The earliest Latin commentary on the Gospels, lost for more than 1,500 years, has been rediscovered and made available in English for the first time. The extraordinary find, a work written by a bishop in northern Italy, Fortunatianus of Aquileia, dates back to the middle of the fourth century.

The biblical text of the manuscript is of particular significance, as it predates the standard Latin version known as the Vulgate and provides new evidence about the earliest form of the Gospels in Latin.

Despite references to this commentary in other ancient works, no copy was known to survive until Dr Lukas Dorfbauer, a researcher from the University of Salzburg, identified Fortunatianus’ text in an anonymous manuscript copied around the year 800 and held in Cologne Cathedral Library. The manuscripts of Cologne Cathedral Library were made available online in 2002.

Source: Lost Latin commentary on the Gospels rediscovered after 1,500 years thanks to digital technology

An Introduction to C.S. Lewis: Writings and Significance — A Hillsdale College Online Course

 

Reserve your spot in Hillsdale College’s free Online Course, “An Introduction to C.S. Lewis: Writings and Significance.”

In the last week I received this notice from Hillsdale College about a free online course on C. S. Lewis. I pass it on in case there are those who may be interested in pursuing it.

Hillsdale is a conservative liberal arts college with a strong academic record (consistently ranked among the top colleges in the country). It offers other free online courses as well, such as one on the U.S. Constitution. Check out the online course page and the courses offered in the areas of politics, literature, history, and religion.

Below is the introduction to the course that was sent with the email.

I’d like to invite you to join me in Hillsdale College’s newest free course studying the greatest Christian apologist of the 20th century, C.S. Lewis.

C.S. Lewis, best known as the author of the Chronicles of Narnia, also authored works on apologetics and philosophy, including The Abolition of Man and Mere Christianity. This free online course will study both Lewis’s apologetics and his fiction, as well as his philosophical and literary writings, and their continuing significance today.

I have the privilege of delivering three of the nine lectures, and I will be joined by Michael Ward, a leading expert on the works of C.S. Lewis, and Hillsdale professor of English and Provost, David Whalen. I hope you enjoy the course.

Source: An Introduction to C.S. Lewis: Writings and Significance — A Hillsdale College Online Course

Published in: on April 27, 2017 at 10:38 PM  Comments (2)  

The Uniqueness of the Psalms – Dr. Robert Godfrey

The book of Psalms remains an important object of study on the part of Christians and the Christian church. Every year new books about and commentaries on the Psalms appear. This year is no exception. No doubt with the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, books will appear relating the two, since the Reformation was also a return to this OT songbook for the church.

Reformation Trust has recently published a new book on the Psalms, Learning to Love the Psalms (March, 2017; 263 pp.). It is written by Dr. W. Robert Godfrey, president of Westminster Seminary (Escondido, CA) and professor of church history there.

The publisher provides this summary of the title:

The Psalms are undeniably beautiful. They are also difficult, and readers often come away convinced that tremendous riches remain just beyond their grasp. In this book, Dr. W. Robert Godfrey invites us to journey with him towards a greater understanding and love for these sacred verses. The timeless elegance of the Psalms, their depth of expression, and testimony to the greatness of God have enchanted and edified God’s people for centuries. Learning to Love the Psalms is intended to help today’s Christians share in that delight.

In connection with this new book, Ligonier posted a brief video with Godfrey describing the richness of the Psalms (dated April 11, 2017). You may watch it here:

This book has been added to the PRC Seminary’s collection of books on the Psalms. It may be a title you wish to add to your personal or family library as well.

Source: The Uniqueness of the Psalms

Literary Treasures from the Library of Congress Archives | Literary Hub

This week is National Library Week 2017 and special events are being held throughout the week throughout the country. One special place is the Library of Congress, where you will find all kinds of treasures (including special items relating to WW I).

Literary Hub pulled together some rarely seen treasures from the LOC and featured them in a post yesterday (April 10, 2017). That feature is related to a new book published by the LOC titled The Card Catalog: Books, Cards and Literary Treasures.

Below I post their introductory paragraph and one such sample pair. Visit the link at the end to enjoy the rest.

 

And to celebrate the week, don’t forget to visit your favorite local library. I stopped by the Georgetown one last night. Though a small community library, it is full of wonderful resources and events. Take your children or grandchildren and explore. It will make their day 🙂

In honor of National Library Week (April 9-15), we have curated a selection of rarely seen literary treasures from the Library of Congress Archives, from William Blake’s engraved prophecies to a first edition of The Fire Next Time. Each book cover is paired with its card from the Library of Congress card catalog. Some of these are hand-written, some are printed, and many are annotated by hand, reflecting the meticulous work and invaluable skills of generations of librarians.

Source: Rarely Seen Literary Treasures from the Library of Congress Archives | Literary Hub

Published in: on April 11, 2017 at 6:38 AM  Leave a Comment  

Presidential Inaugurations and the Bible

Today here in the United States our forty-fifth president, Mr. Donald Trump, is being inaugurated, along with his vice-president, Mike Pence.

As is the custom of those being inaugurated into office, these men will swear their oath of allegiance on the Bible, God’s Holy Word. Whether or not they profess to be Christian and take that vow seriously, those who take office stand before God and are responsible to honor and obey that Word on which their hands will rest. And God will judge them according to that oath and that Word.

CNS News reported yesterday on the special Bibles that Trump and Pence will use for their swearing-in ceremony:

Both President-elect Donald Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence will swear their oaths of office Friday on historic Bibles used by former Republican Presidents Abraham Lincoln and Ronald Reagan, the Presidential Inaugural Committee (PIC) announced.

Trump will be sworn-in by Chief Justice of the Supreme Court John Roberts using the same Bible that President Lincoln used during his swearing-in by Chief Justice Roger Taney on March 4, 1861.

In addition, Trump will also use another Bible that was given to him by his mother in 1955 when he graduated from Sunday Church Primary School at the First Presbyterian Church in New York.

…Pence will be sworn-in by Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas – who will become the “first African-American in history to administer the oath of office to the Vice President or President of the United States” – using the Reagan Family Bible. He will be the first official since Reagan to do so.

The Reagan Family Bible is on permanent display behind bulletproof glass at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum in Simi Valley, California. During Pence’s swearing-in, it will be “open to the same passage used during President Reagan’s two inaugurations,” according to the PIC.

[Reagan Family Bible. (Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Institute)]

That passage is from II Chronicles 7:14: “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.”

The Museum of the Bible posted a couple of videos recently on past presidents and the Bibles they used for their oath of office. Below is one of them.

As is our own duty before God and according to His Word, let us pray for our new president, vice-president, and their cabinet, as those entrusted with a sacred and solemn responsibility. And let us give them due honor and submission, as unto the Lord Who has set them in office for this time and for His purpose (Rom.13; 1 Tim. 2).

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Thousands of rare books left to Trinity College’s Wren Library in Cambridge

This interesting books news item appeared in Cambridge News December 15, 2016. This is the kind of thing librarians dream of – and sometimes are privileged to experience in their lifetime.

As we close out 2016, I am thankful for the PRC Seminary acquisitions of this past year – purchased and donated. None of these books was perhaps as rare as those received by Trinity College, but to us they are all invaluable.

Below is the beginning of the story as reported by Cambridge; read the rest and view more images at the link below.

An extraordinary’ private collection of books has been bequeathed to Trinity College’s Wren Library in Cambridge.

More than 7,500 texts were left to the library by Mary, Duchess of Roxburghe – one of the largest bequests in its history.

The vast collection features rare first editions by the poets Byron, Shelley, Wordsworth and Tennyson.

Other fascinating texts include previously unknown manuscripts of Napoleon Bonaparte, George Washington, Florence Nightingale and Charles Dickens.

Dr. Nicholas Bell, Trinity’s librarian said it was “an extraordinary library – one of the most important private collections in Britain, which offers untold discoveries.”

Source: ‘One of the most important private collections in Britain’ – thousands of rare books left to Trinity College’s Wren Library in Cambridge – Cambridge News

Published in: on December 29, 2016 at 10:01 AM  Leave a Comment  

PRC Seminary Convocation Tonight!

sem-front-may-2016-1

*Note: You may find an update of the convocation, complete with pictures, on the PRC website.

The PRC Seminary faculty and students, along with the Theological School Committee, remind you of the annual convocation to be held TONIGHT in Grandville PRC starting at 7:30 p.m.

RDykstra1Prof. Russell Dykstra will speak on “The Ezra Model: Having a Heart for the Lord’s House.” Students old and new will be introduced and special music will be provided as part of the program.

All PRC members in the area and friends of the Seminary are cordially invited to join us as we mark the beginning of the new school year.

Show your support for the Seminary and its cause by attending this important program! Hope to see YOU there!

Profitable quote (from program):

It has been shown, that by the faith of the gospel Christ becomes ours, and we are made partakers of the salvation and eternal blessedness procured by him. But as our ignorance and sloth (I may add, the vanity of our mind) stand in need of external helps, by which faith may be begotten in us, and may increase and make progress until its consummation, God, in accommodation to our infirmity, has added such helps, and secured the effectual preaching of the gospel, by depositing this treasure with the Church. He has appointed pastors and teachers, by whose lips he might edify his people (Eph. 4:11); he has invested them with authority, and, in short, omitted nothing that might conduce to holy consent in the faith, and to right order. In particular, he has instituted sacraments, which we feel by experience to be most useful helps in fostering and confirming our faith. For seeing we are shut up in the prison of the body, and have not yet attained to the rank of angels, God, in accommodation to our capacity, has in his admirable providence provided a method by which, though widely separated, we might still draw near to him…. I will begin with the Church, into whose bosom God is pleased to collect his children, not only that by her aid and ministry they may be nourished so long as they are babes and children, but may also be guided by her maternal care until they grow up to manhood, and, finally, attain to the perfection of faith. What God has thus joined, let not man put asunder: to those to whom he is a Father, the Church must also be a mother.
~ John Calvin Institutes of the Christian Religion, 4.1.1.

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Published in: on September 7, 2016 at 11:36 AM  Leave a Comment  

Voices of Victory at CRC Conference Grounds Tonight

VOV-pic-2016

The Voices of Victory quartet will be performing tonight at the CRC Conference Grounds and we cordially invite you to join us there for a wonderful night of song in praise to our great God and Savior.

The program will begin at 7:00 p.m. (ET) and will be held in the new (air-conditioned!) worship center. We will be doing many of the songs on our new album, which we are always excited to sing live.

CRC-CG-new-facility-2016

For more information or directions, visit the links to our Facebook page and the CRC Conference Grounds website.

Hope to see you there! It will be a beautiful night for a ride out to the lake and some great music!

Published in: on June 25, 2016 at 8:06 AM  Leave a Comment