God is Jealous

In my sermon yesterday, I preached on the John 2 account of Jesus overturning the tables in the temple.  I stated that one of the reasons why He did this is because He is a jealous God who has an unquenchable and jealous zeal for worship.  I quoted Exodus 34:14 that says,”For you shall worship no other god, for the LORD, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.”

I’m reading the book, Warfield on the Christian Life, which is a book written by Fred Zaspel that explores the theology and life of one of America’s leading theologians, B.B. Warfield, who lived from 1851-1921.  While reading today, I came across this quote from him on the “jealous envy” of God.  I thought I would share it as a compliment to my sermon yesterday.

God contemplates our dallying with the world and the world’s pleasures.  He envies the world of our love – the love due Him, pledged to Him, but basely withdrawn from Him and squandered upon the world.  The combined expression is, you will see, astonishingly intense.  God is represented as panting, yearning, after us, even unto not merely jealousy, but jealous envy.  Such vehemence of feeling in God is almost incredible.  Strain the capacity of words to the utmost and still they fall short of expressing the jealous envy with which He contemplates the love of His people for the world, the yearning desire which possesses Him to turn them back to their duty to Him.


MEGA Mega Church

There are big churches, and then there’s the Yoido Full Gospel Church in Seoul, South Korea. Started with 5 people in 1958, it puts the “mega” in megachurch with a membership of 800,000. On a typical day 200,000 will attend one of seven services along with another 200,000 to 300,000 watching them on TV in adjoining buildings or satellite branches. While some other churches may be losing members, this one just keeps growing. The main sanctuary holds 21,000 people packed to the rafters 7 times every Sunday. Each service has its own orchestra, its own choir, and its own pastor. There are hundreds of assistants. Each service is translated into 16 different languages. The church has missionaries in 67 different countries. Every morning at 4:30, people come to church to pray for 1–2 hours, and all-night prayer meetings take place on Friday evenings. Most members tithe 10% of their income to the church. 60 years ago there were about 50,000 Christians in South Korea. Today it’s more than 10 million, and almost 1 in 10 was baptized in the Yoido Full Gospel Church.

(Religion & Ethics Newsweekly 1/27/12)

A Stolen Heart – Literally

A cathedral in Dublin asked on Tuesday that anyone with information on the missing preserved heart of the city’s patron saint step forward.  The 884-year-old heart of St. Laurence O’Toole was stolen over the weekend from the iron cage where it is kept in Christ Church Cathedral.  Nothing was taken from the chapel other than the heart, although gold candlesticks and other valuables were there.

St. Laurence O’Toole, an archbishop of Dublin in the 12th century, was born in 1128, lived until 1180 and was made a saint in 1225, according to the Catholic Encyclopedia.  Catholics often preserve body parts from saints, believing they should be revered. When Pope John Paul II was declared “blessed” – a step below sainthood – last year, a vial of his blood was displayed as a relic.

By the way, I’m preparing a collection of my clipped fingernails for display in my church foyer as we speak.

Church Chicks

I didn’t know it was OK for me to call the women in my church this.  But, evidently I can.

“Chicks Bible study begins this week.”
“The chicks’ bathroom is down the hall and on the right.”
“My next sermon series will be ‘Great Chicks of the Bible’.”
“Are there some chicks that might be willing to help in the nursery?”
“An elder is to be the husband of but one chick.”