Genesis 2:18: Singleness and Marriage

Here are two articles on singleness that may be helpful as we look at Genesis 2:18-24 this Sunday.

4 Things God Says to Singles (thegospelcoalition.org)

Did Paul Prefer Singleness? : 9Marks

Vaughan Roberts has also written a helpful book called True Friendship, available here True Friendship (Paperback) – Vaughan Roberts – 10ofThose.com

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Genesis 1:26-28: Made in the image of God

Here are two quotes that I found helpful following the sermon on Sunday on Genesis 1:26-28. I read the first in the sermon, but not the second.

Anthony Hoekema in his book “Created in God’s Image”, page 77, writes: “Eve is created as a helper for Adam. “The words imply that woman complements man, supplements him, completes him, is strong where he may be weak, supplies his deficiencies and fills his needs. Man is therefore incomplete without woman. This holds for the woman as well as for the man. Woman, too, is incomplete without the man; man supplements woman, complements her, fills her needs, is strong where she is weak.”

And secondly, John Piper referred to this quote in a talk on race and ethnic harmony, and the quote comes from an article in The Journal of Biblical Counseling by John Yenchko:

“I just recently read about W. H. Auden, one of the wonderful poets of the 1930s, who was a fair-haired European intellectual. His poetry captured the hearts of the intelligentsia of Europe, and they loved him. He went to fight in the Spanish Civil War against Franco and the Fascists. He wanted to join the good guys to stand against the Fascists. But while he was there, he discovered that there were no good guys, that there were, in fact, horrible, evil atrocities on both sides. In 1940 he was converted. Do you know how he was converted? In one event. He went to the Yorkville section of Manhattan, and there he saw a movie produced by Hitler’s Third Reich. It followed the invasion, the Blitzkrieg through Poland. It was called Psyche in Poland, and it was the propaganda piece of their great victory. There were many Germans who had immigrated to the United States sitting in the theater. Whenever a Polish person was brought on the screen, usually being ferried about by one of the Germans, people in the audience would scream, “Kill him! Kill him!” in a frenzied commitment to the destruction of Germany’s enemies. Auden, this magnificent, wonderful, European, enlightened intellectual, was so shocked and so horrified that he walked out of the theater stunned. He later said that one question ran through his mind: “What response can my enlightened, humanistic tradition give to this evil, to those who cry out for the blood of innocent victims?” He saw the bankruptcy of humanism. He began to sense that the only answer to evil would be found in God and in the revelation of God in the Bible. He was convicted of God’s holiness and of his own sinfulness. In 1940 he became a Christian. He began to write poetry that infuriated the European intellectuals, and they grew to despise him. But he didn’t care.”

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In Her Words: Patricia St John – A difference in death.

Paperback
Available from https://www.10ofthose.com

I’ve just finished reading Patricia St John’s autobiography, “In Her Words”. It’s a very easy and encouraging read with some lovely stories from her life. This is one from when she was nursing (pages 82-84):

“I vividly remember one incident that steadied my sense of values at a time when I needed the reminder. It was a stifling afternoon and in two small single wards downstairs, two expatriate men were dying. I was specialling them, going from one to another.

In one room lay an Englishman and his wife sat beside him; in a quiet dispassionate voice she told me what had happened. Her husband was a trainer of Arab racing steeds and they lived in a palatial house up the mountain surrounded by beauty and luxury. Cocktail parties were held in his house night after night and the wealthy, expatriate population flocked to his home. All was going well, until, one day, he complained of a violent headache and went to see his doctor. He was warned that his blood pressure was exceedingly high and told, among other things, to stop drinking alcohol. .

A few nights later he woke in a panic. ‘I can’t lie here thinking about death,’ he said to his wife. ‘I must take something to help me forget.’ He went downstairs, drank heavily, and had a stroke. That afternoon he died without regaining consciousness, and as I stood looking down on him, I felt acutely sad and depressed; so much in the years behind – all that life could give of riches and pleasure; but for the future he had felt only fear and hopelessness, so what had it all amounted to?

But one stride across the passage in another small room lay Don Samuel from Spain. We were still in that era of history when a Protestant could be imprisoned for his faith, and Don Samuel had spent months in a cell. On his release he had joined his wife and children in Tangier and it had been a joyful reunion with the hope of a happy united family life. But within a few weeks it became clear that the poor diet and harsh conditions had taken their toll; he was already suffering from advanced cancer of the stomach and that afternoon he too lay dying, with his wife and family sitting beside him.

But just as he seemed to be drawing his last breath, a look of incredible joy dawned on his face. ‘Fetch the doctor,’ he whispered, ‘I want him to see what I see!’ I ran to Outpatients and Farnham ran back with me. We were just in time; Don Samuel was pointing to the ceiling. ‘Look! Look!’ he was saying in Spanish. ‘You must see it! To the light, to the light! I’m going to Jesus – oh, can’t you see?’ … he was gone, and we were left staring at the whitewashed ceiling, but some glory lingered in the quiet room and the message hung in the air: so little in the years behind; so much of hardship and persecution and pain, but ahead, a beauty and fulfilment that we could not even begin to imagine, and wasn’t that really what life was all about?”

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Questions to ask ourselves to expose our idols

Here are two lists of questions we can use to examine ourselves for the idols in our lives.  The first list is from David Powlinson’s book, “Seeing with New Eyes” and the second list is online from Tim Keller.

List 1

  • What do you love? Hate?
  • What do you want, desire, crave, lust, and wish for? What desire do you serve and obey?
  • What do you seek, aim for, and pursue?
  • Where do you bank your hopes?
  • What do you fear? What do you not want? What do you tend to worry about?
  • What do you feel like doing?
  • What do you think you need? What are your “felt needs”?
  • What are your plans, agendas, strategies, and intentions designed to accomplish?
  • What makes you tick? What sun does your planet revolve around? What do you organize your life
  • around?
  • Where do you find refuge, safety, comfort, escape, pleasure, security?
  • What or whom do you trust?
  • Whose performance matters? On whose shoulders does the well-being of your world rest? Who can
  • make it better, make it work, make it safe, make it successful?
  • Whom must you please? Whose opinion of you counts? From whom do you desire approval and
  • fear rejection? Whose value system do you measure yourself against? In whose eyes are you living?
  • Whose love and approval do you need?
  • Who are your role models? What kind of person do you think you ought to be or want to be?
  • On your deathbed, what would sum up your life as worthwhile? What gives your life meaning?
  • How do you define and weigh success and failure, right or wrong, desirable or undesirable, in any
  • particular situation?
  • What would make you feel rich, secure, prosperous? What must you get to make life sing?
  • What would bring you the greatest pleasure, happiness, and delight? The greatest pain or misery?
  • Whose coming into political power would make everything better?
  • Whose victory or success would make your life happy? How do you define victory and success?
  • What do you see as your rights? What do you feel entitled to?
  • In what situations do you feel pressured or tense? Confident and relaxed? When you are pressured,
  • where do you turn? What do you think about? What are your escapes? What do you escape from?
  • What do you want to get out of life? What payoff do you seek out of the things you do?
  • What do you pray for?
  • What do you think about most often? What preoccupies or obsesses you? IN the morning, to what
  • does your mind drift instinctively?
  • What do you talk about? What is important to you? What attitudes do you communicate?
  • How do you spend your time? What are your priorities?
  • What are your characteristic fantasies, either pleasurable or fearful? Daydreams? What do your
  • night dreams revolve around?
  • What are the functional beliefs that control how you interpret your life and determine how you act?
  • What are you idols and false gods? In what do you place your trust or set your hopes? What do you
  • turn to or seek/ Where do you take refuge?
  • How do you live for yourself?
  • How do you live as a slave of the devil?
  • What instinctively seems and feels right to you? What are your opinions, the things you feel true?
  • Where do you find your identity? How do you define who you are?

List 2

“Life only has meaning / I only have worth if …

  • I have power and influence over others. (Power Idolatry)
  • I am loved and respected by ___________. (Approval Idolatry)
  • I have this kind of pleasure experience, a particular quality of life. (Comfort Idolatry)
  • I am able to get mastery over my life in the area of _________. (Control Idolatry)
  • People are dependent on me and need me. (Helping Idolatry)
  • Someone is there to protect me and keep me safe. (Dependence Idolatry)
  • I am completely free from obligations or responsibilities to take care of someone. (Independence Idolatry)
  • I am highly productive and getting a lot done. (Work Idolatry)
  • I am being recognized for my accomplishments, and I am excelling in my work. (Achievement Idolatry)
  • I have a certain level of wealth, financial freedom, and very nice possessions. (Materialism Idolatry)
  • I am adhering to my religion’s moral codes and accomplished in its activities. (Religion Idolatry)
  • This one person is in my life and happy to be there, and/or happy with me. (Individual person Idolatry)
  • I feel I am totally independent of organized religion and am living by a self-made morality. (Irreligion Idolatry)
  • My race and culture is ascendant and recognized as superior. (Racial/cultural Idolatry)
  • A particular social grouping or professional grouping or other group lets me in. (Inner Ring Idolatry)
  • My children and/or my parents are happy and happy with me. (Family Idolatry)
  • or Mrs. “Right” is in love with me. (Relationship Idolatry)
  • I am hurting, in a problem; only then do I feel worthy of love or able to deal with guilt. (Suffering Idolatry)
  • My political or social cause is making progress and ascending in influence or power. (Ideology Idolatry)
  • I have a particular kind of look or body image. (Image Idolatry)
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Jonah 4:1-11 Daily Bible Reading and Devotion 19.6.20

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Jonah 4:1-11 Daily Bible Reading and Devotion 18.6.20

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Jonah 4:1-4 Daily Bible Reading and Devotion 17.6.20

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Jonah 3:1-10B Daily Bible Reading and Devotion

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Jonah 3:1-10 Daily Bible Reading and Devotion

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Jonah 1:17-2:10 C: Daily Bible Reading and Devotion 13.6.20

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