Thursday, May 28, 2015

What Does the Bible Really Teach about Homosexuality?

Sometimes a title says it all. Take Kevin DeYoung’s book, What Does the Bible Really Teach about Homosexuality? DeYoung’s writing and style is as clear and straightforward as his title. He considers various Bible passages from the Old and New Testaments and gives logical arguments for why they should be understood to be prohibiting all homosexual behavior, something that has virtually been universally held within Christendom from New Testament times until today.

No one should be surprised by DeYoung’s conclusions. Those who already hold the position that homosexuality is sin probably don’t need DeYoung’s book to further confirm them in their belief. However, DeYoung’s pastoral concern for the church should serve as a model for others to follow, and his assessment and refutation of common arguments against a traditional understanding of homosexuality and marriage may help prop up those who have difficulty responding to the barrage of questions, challenges, and criticisms that come from close friends and complete strangers if the subject ever comes up in conversation.

Ultimately DeYoung’s book operates from the presupposition that the Bible is an authority in it’s own right, not a sourcebook of quotes or positive feelings to affirms us in what we chose to do. After (and even before) reading this book and weighing the evidence, I do not think anyone could logically argue that the Bible is in favor of homosexual behavior. But in my experience, and DeYoung attests to this as well, it’s not reverence for the authority of the Bible that leads people to view homosexuality as acceptable, but the elevation of some other “god”—relationships, experiences, the “wisdom” of modern society, etc.—over what they recognize to be the clear, though, in their opinion, misguided, teaching of Scripture.

For the audiobook edition christianaudio contracted the narration out to one of the best narrators in their catalogue, and one who has narrated a number of DeYoung’s books, Adam Verner.

Disclosure: I received this book from christianaudio in exchange for my honest review.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

April in Review

We started April off by getting out the swings for the kids. Abby and Lukas love swinging, and they’re both able to sit on a “big kid swing.” I also worked on the lawn, spreading grass seed and fertilizer. It’s starting to feel like summer!

We celebrated Easter at church, and I got to feel a lot more like a pastor this month as I preached twice in Spanish, taught the youth class, had an impromptu get together one night with the youth, and later in the month had a movie night and watched The Giver, discussing it’s message and comparing it to the Bible’s teaching. Hannah even got to enjoy a “pastors’ wives’ night out” with a few ladies, while I stayed home and worked on my Hebrew homework.

Speaking of Hebrew, I spent two days in Louisville doing exercises and receiving supplemental lectures on Biblical Hebrew. Even though it’s hard work, it always feels like a bit of a vacation to be out of town and away from my day job. I even used some of my language skills when preparing one of my sermons. I wonder if it showed…

This month Hannah and I played host to her sister, Deborah, and brother-in-law, Aaron. They had a blast spending time with Abby and Lukas, visiting the Children’s Museum, eating out at Cracker Barrel, and playing a few holes of disc golf with me. A week later my parents visited. We put them to work, too! Dad helped me install a light in our living room, though I had to do the hard work of crawling through the attic. We also took out our shower doors and put in a shower curtain, which seemed to be more work than installing the light. Mom helped Hannah set up the sewing machine I bought her last month for her birthday, and we finished off that day watching My Fair Lady. The next day we did a little more relaxing, eating lunch at The Mayberry CafĂ© and lounging around the house. Before we knew it we were back to just the four of us again.

Lukas finally turned two years old on the 26th, so we gave him a little Disney Planes themed party with just us and the kids. He had a little birthday money, and he’s been wanting some kind of dress-up clothes since Abby has her princess dresses, so we took him to Target and got him a Spiderman mask.

At the end of the month Hannah bought me a grill and made me use it right away when we had some friends and their kids over for hamburgers and brats. I’m definitely going to get used to eating food hot off the grill this summer.