God’s Sovereign Plan of Redemption

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An excerpt from Trip Lee’s book, The Good Life.Image

…Jesus took Paul, who was an enemy of the gospel and persecutor of Christians, and turned him into a servant of the gospel. And God has taken sinners like you and me, who spurned the gospel, and has made us ministers of the gospel as well. That is a testimony to God’s one-of-a-kind, unique grace and transforming power.


God doesn’t need us, yet He has allowed us to participate in His sovereign plan to reconcile sinners to Himself. We get to be a part of His grand plan of redemption, and that is a privilege. Not because we deserve to, but because He is gracious. (The Good Life; p162-163)

Is Heaven for Real? Only the Bible can reliably state life after death

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heaven-is-for-real-featureSouthern Baptists in Baltimore for their annual meeting say only the Bible can reliably describe life after death.

A proposed resolution calls on the denomination’s Lifeway bookstores to stop selling “Heaven is for Real,” the best-selling book and film about a child’s description of meeting Jesus, angels and deceased relatives while he underwent surgery. The resolution’s sponsor cites theological objections.

A related resolution that passed Tuesday didn’t specifically mention “Heaven is for Real,” but stated that people can be led astray by popular books and movies that contain “personal testimonies that cannot be corroborated” and often conflict with what the Bible teaches.

The broader resolution reaffirms what it calls “the sufficiency of biblical revelation over subjective experiential explanations” about heaven and hell. - One News Now

There has been reports over the last couple of days that someone made a motion, during one of the sessions, asking for a proposed ban on the popular “Heaven is for Real” books at all Lifeway stores. A pastor, who was there at the convention, made a comment (on social media) that according to the Convention’s bylaws, no such proposal would stand a chance.

Here are the bylaws that support this;

  • A messenger may speak in debate for longer than three minutes only with the permission of the Convention granted by a two-thirds vote.
  • A messenger may introduce a second motion during a business session only if no other messenger is seeking the floor who has not made a motion during that session.
    1. Presentation of Outside Causes: Causes other than those provided for in the regular work of the Convention may be presented to the Convention upon authority of officers of the Convention in conference with the Committee on Order of Business in such ways and at such times as may be dictated by the courtesies of the case and the necessities of the program.

Regardless of sidesteps our leaders took on this issue, the adopted resolution does call for us to be careful with these accounts of people that deal with the afterlife.

Paul makes this clear in 2 Corinthians in dealing with false prophets;

For if someone comes and proclaims another Jesus than the one we proclaimed, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you put up with it readily. Indeed, I consider that I am not in the least inferior to these super-apostles. Even if I am unskilled in speaking, I am not so in knowledge; indeed, in every way we have made this plain to you in all things.

And what I do I will continue to do, in order to undermine the claim of those who would like to claim that in their boasted mission they work on the same terms as we do. For such men are false prophets, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is no surprise if his servants, also, disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds. (2 Corithians 11:4-6, 12-15 ESV)

This goes for everything that comes to us through the entertainment industry and even from the pulpit; movies like Heaven is for Real, Son of God, and Noah; we have to come at these ready in defense of our faith. The Bible is the authoritative and inerrant Word of God. That is our guide in life. We have questions? Let’s go to the Scriptures for those answers.

Bonhoeffer’s Prayer

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This is one of the many prayers that Bonhoeffer wrote while in prison at Tegel to encourage other prisoners;

O God,

Early in the morning do I cry unto thee.

Help me to pray,

And to think only of thee.

I cannot pray alone. 

In me there is darkness,

But with thee there is light.

I am lonely, but thou leavest me not.

I am feeble in heart, but thou leavest me not.

I am restless, but with thee there is peace.

In me there is bitterness, but with thee there is patience;

Thou knowest the way for me.

- Dietrich Bonhoeffer

My Wife Has Tattoos: Marriage, New Birth, and the Gospel

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This is a perfect example of how marriage and the Gospel is intertwined. Just as Spencer did not deserve someone like Taylor and vise versa, God still used this to pull them together and make them one just as He did with Christ on the cross to reconcile us to Him.

Originally posted on Unspoken:

Photo credit: Todd Balsley

by Spencer Harmon

Today is the day of my wedding.  And I am not marrying the girl of my dreams.

If you would have told me when I was a teenager that my wife would have seven tattoo’s, a history in drugs, alcohol, and attending heavy metal concerts I would have laughed at you, given you one of my courtship books, and told you to take a hike.  My plans were much different, much more nuanced with careful planning, much more clean-cut, and much more, well, about me.

You see, it wasn’t my dream to marry a girl that was complicated.  I never dreamed that I would sit on a couch with my future wife in pre-marital counseling listening to her cry and tell stories of drunken nights, listing the drugs she used, confessing mistakes made in past relationships.

This isn’t my dream – it’s…

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“Well, that escalated quickly” LC names Argile Smith interim president; places Aguillard on emeritus status

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Ron Burgundy, of the hit movie, ‘Anchorman,” said it best to summarize the events of today on the small Baptist campus that is Louisiana College.Image

Dr. Joe Aguillard has been removed from the title of “President,” but he was placed on emeritus role, beginning August 1, 2014. He is not totally removed from any of this roles. Meanwhile, Dr. Argile Smith, Vice President for Intergration of Faith and Learning and the Dean of the Caskey School of Divinity, has been named the interim president of the school.

I am not surprised by any of this. It is hard to not consider that undue influence could’ve been used in these decisions. If any of you follow LC closely or know what is going on, you know that Dr. Smith sides with Aguillard. He will have no problem having Aguillard assist him in various roles as the Board of Trustees will continue a new search for an official president to lead the college.

This also shows that the problem is not just in the realms of the small Baptist college but also spawns into our Louisiana Baptist Convention, whether you want to hear that or not. It’s a sad state of affairs. 

Louisiana politics holds no barriers. It is both corrupt on both the religious and secular sides of the coin.

The Board also voted, 18-14, to approve a new confidentiality agreement with the board members to pretty much keep everything behind closed doors that needs to stay behind closed doors.

So much for transparency and integrity.

A representative for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) has stated to The Town Talk, that the agency’s Principles of Accreditation does not require member institutions to have confidentiality agreements like those of LC’s.

Johnson said SACS requires governing boards of member institutions, like Louisiana College, to have conflict of interest policies. He said that “could be stretched” to include an issue like confidentiality agreements but that conflict of interest policies often refer to financial obligations or family members who are employees. – Leigh Guidry, The Town Talk

Twitter has been abuzz with emotions, responding and reacting to the latest move at LC. Some students are shocked and dissapointed in this kind of move that the Board of Trustees made (or was pretty much forced to have made).

Others, associated with the college, in the past, and national bloggers, pastors, and constituents, in the Southern Baptist Convention, have also voiced their displeasure for the latest move. 

Some have said that “only in Baptist life, can a scandal-ridden official be removed by trustees while being given Emeritus status.”

Ken Fryer, an elder from Heritage Baptist Church, in Shreveport, had this to say;

The despicable actions of the Louisiana College Board of Trustees, today, solves nothing and actually makes the situation worse.”

Indeed, today’s results have solved nothing and have the distinct possibility of making things worse, not only for our Baptist college but also for our convention as well.

God have mercy on our souls. 


Media banned from prayer meeting on Louisiana College campus

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This is the second time that there has been a prayer meeting held on the campus of the small Baptist college campus, regarding the administration of Louisiana College.

Twice has the media been banned from the campus in hopes of covering the prayer gathering, personally.

Fortunately, they cannot stop it from being reported at all. The Town Talk still came up with an article that mentions the prayer meeting while it also talks about them being banned from campus.

The prayer meeting was supposed to be held around the fountain, in front of Alexandria Hall, but the rainy weather halted those plans and moved it inside to the student center.

It’s been reported that over 40 to 50 or so people, consisting of students, alumni, and concerned 20140414-210626.jpgcommunity members, that had gathered for prayer.

Three members of the Board of Trustees even joined them for the prayer session. One of those, being Lonnie Scarborough, who came down to the last prayer meeting.

Tomorrow is the day that the whole board will meet to decide Joe Aguillard’s future.

Will they vote to renew his contract or not to renew his contract? Let’s continue in prayer asking for guidance and wisdom for the Board of Trustees.


Louisiana College Board of Trustees to meet this coming week; decide Aguillard’s future

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It’s back. The time where the Louisiana College Board of Trustees gathers together to decide what’s in the best interests of the college.

Ok, I paraphrased that with my own emphasis, just a little.

But on a serious note, this coming week is the week where the Board of Trustees will decide on President Joe Aguillard’s future with the small, Baptist college in Pineville.

Much worry has been perceived by some. Others, not so much worry for various reasons. Some students gathered with support from the alumni, community members, and two trustee members, on that Monday, March 24th, for a time of prayer for the school and it’s leadership. 

The Executive Committee will meet on Monday but no action will be taken. Tuesday is when the full 34-member board will meet and that is when Aguillard’s future will be brought up. The board will decide whether to let go of Aguillard or renew his contract. 

It was around this time, last year, that the Board held a similar meeting and voted 16-13 to retain Aguillard as president of the college. Things could be different this time around. 

There is an overwhelming amount of evidence that has been documented by former Vice Presidents, Timothy “Tim” Johnson, and Dr. Charles L. “Chuck” Quarles, along with others who have contributed to the cause.

You can check out those documents by going to Louisiana College Wiki.