Agnostics vs. Atheists, or Eagleton vs. Dawkins

“Because there is no necessity about the cosmos, we cannot deduce the laws which govern it from a priori principles, but need instead to look at how it actually works. This is the task of science. There is thus a curious connection between the doctrine of creation out of nothing and the professional life of Richard Dawkins. Without God, Dawkins would be out of a job. It is thus particularly churlish [rude] of him to call the existence of his employer into question.”

I found this tidbit amusing. From Terry Eagleton’s Reason, Faith, and Revolution: Reflections on the God Debate. He’s a British literary critic and no friend of Christianity. The above work is part of his contribution to the Terry Lectures, given at Yale in 2008. They are an academic series of lectures given annually which discuss the relation of faith and science. Marilynne Robinson was also asked to speak at these lectures, her contribution was published as Absence of Mind. Good stuff

C.M. Granger

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Amazed by the Difference a Day Makes

 

“Have a blessed week.”  Do you ever find yourself saying this?  But if someone turned to us and asked, “What should I do to have a blessed week?” Would we have an answer?

Psalm 1 describes the life of a blessed man – He who delights in God’s law.  Do we delight in God’s law? Is this what we have in mind when we wish someone a blessed week?

The Ten Commandments are a summary of God’s law.  The Fourth Commandment states, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.” Is it our delight to keep the Sabbath holy?  I must admit that most of my Christian life was not a delight in the Sabbath. Last year I was challenged to consider if the laxness of the modern-day Christian, compared to how the Puritans practiced the Sabbath, displays an evidence of advance or decline in true piety.  I’ve concluded the latter.  Yet there is a way we can grow in our piety – Keep the Sabbath Holy. Oh, this is not a plea for us to return to a sixteenth century lifestyle, but this is an admonishment to love God by obeying what He commanded.

For those who have never received Jesus as Savior & Lord, keeping the Sabbath Holy is putting the cart before the horse.  The purpose of the Law for the unconverted is to point him to the only Savior of the world, Jesus Christ; the purpose for the believer is for him to grow in piety.  The believer becomes better prepared for his eternal home when he delights in God’s law and obeys His word.

This may be tough, so take some gradual steps. I’ve started by declaring a work stoppage in my life on Sunday, and used my time between services to mediate on creation or my redemption (Exodus 20:8-11; Deuteronomy 5:12-15).

I’ve been amazed by the difference a day makes.

The Lord Chief Justice Sir Matthew Hale once said that he found, “By a strict and diligent observation that a due observance of the duties of the Lord’s Day hath ever joined to it a blessing upon the rest of his time, and the week that hath been so begun hath been blessed…” Maybe this is another area we should prove God. Maybe He will open up the windows of heaven and pour down a blessing that will spill over into the next six days.  Who knows, if we obey the fourth commandment, we might be able to declare that we had a blessed week, and stand amazed by the difference a day makes.

Brian L. Spivey