One of the most perpetuated lies of the 21st century is the mantra “be your best self.” Self-help and power of positive thinking has corrupted many in my generation, in the generation before, and—unfortunately—in the generation to come. The heart of this teaching is creative power that is in you can be released in words to create a better you. John MacArthur describes it as “words with supernatural energy to literally create the world you want.” This teaching draws on Eastern, pagan, religious beliefs, specifically the “law of attraction,” which, according to Wikipedia, holds that “positive or negative thoughts bring positive or negative experiences into a person’s life.”
If you are a member of the Presbyterian Church (USA) or are familiar with that denomination, you likely have heard of the Matthew 25 initiative being pushed by all the major councils of the church. Using cleverly devised language and a thin veneer of orthodoxy, this initiative is nothing more than Marxist propaganda.
I don’t know how I came across it, but a few days ago I saw an advertisement for a new Disney/Pixar film called Luca. Normally, I don’t give these ads a second glance; but this one caught my attention. The image was of the two main characters, Luca and his friend Alberto, riding awfully close to one another on a Vespa. What initially jumped into my mind was, “is Disney making a homosexual main character?”
I recently received an email from the PC(USA) store that was advertising an updated curriculum for children’s Bible study. I usually delete those emails because I can’t trust what comes from the denominational structure, but on this day was curious. The curriculum in question is called “Growing in God’s Love.” I won’t link it here because I can’t, in good conscience, direct anyone to their website. But if you are curious, you can just Google it. The samples that were attached in this email are dripping with false teaching, specifically the teaching of secular humanism.
Growing up in the South meant a constant barrage of country music. There isn’t anything inherently wrong with county music; it just wasn’t my go-to genre when growing up. However, as the years have changed and I've matured in my faith and life, I find myself listening to country music more and more. Theologically speaking, I do prefer the wholesomeness of the Christian music genre, but even there a radio station without a biblical foundation might play Christian music that doesn't proclaim a Scriptural message. Many of my nominal Christian associates consider country music to be wholesome and overall Christian. They couldn't be further from the truth.
At the beginning of 2021, I resolved to read not only through the Bible but also through Calvin’s Institutes of the Christian Religion. A month and a half in and I came across my favorite section thus far. Book I, chapter xiv, section 4 has the subject heading “we should not indulge in speculations concerning the angels, but search out the witness of Scripture.” Though this section falls within the angelology heading of systematic theology, there is much that can be gleaned from it and is indeed a precious gem in the doctrine of sola scriptura.
“Let us not take it into our heads either to seek out God anywhere else than in his Sacred Word, or to think anything about him that is not prompted by his Word, or to speak anything that is not taken from that Word... Men’s minds, when they indulge their curiosity, enter into a labyrinth.”
John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, I.xiii.21
Indeed, vanity joined with pride can be detected in the fact that, in seeking God, miserable men do not rise above themselves as they should, but measure Him by the yardstick of their own carnal stupidity, and neglect sound investigation; thus out of curiosity, they fly off into empty speculations. They do not therefore apprehend God as He offers Himself, but imagine him as they have fashioned him in their own presumption.
John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion, I.iv.1
“King Darius signed the document, that is, the injunction. Now when Daniel knew that the document was signed, he entered his house (now in his roof chamber he had windows open toward Jerusalem); and he continued kneeling on his knees three times a day, praying and giving thanks before his God, as he had been doing previously.”
Regardless of who sits on earthly thrones or in oval offices, there is One, True King who reigns over all, and it is to Him the faithful owe allegiance and obedience. Despots and paupers, presidents and burger-flippers will all have to stand before His judgement seat and give account for their lives.
This week, a woman made history by being elected the first female Vice-President of the United States. A quick look through my liberal Facebook friends’ feeds and I see this fact plastered everywhere. One week before and the Supreme Court had confirmed its fifth female Justice. A quick look over those same Facebook feeds reveals a shocking—but unsurprising—silence.