Friday, September 04, 2009

A Marked Church!

"Why do we willfully act like madmen in searching out the church when Christ has marked it with an unmistakable sign, which, wherever it is seen, cannot fail to show the church there; while where it is absent, nothing remains that can give the true meaning of the church? Paul reminds us that the church was founded not upon men's judgments, not upon priesthoods, but upon the teaching of apostles and prophets [Eph. 2:20]. 'Nay, Jerusalem is to be distinguished from Babylon, Christ's church from Satan's cabal, by the very difference with which Christ distinguishes between them. He says: 'He who is of God hears the words of God. The reason why you do not hear them is that you are not of God.' [John 8:47.]" - Calvins Institues, 4.2.4

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

Dylan & Christmas!

Bob Dylan’s Christmas album, entitled Christmas In the Heart, is to be released on October 13th. All of Bob Dylan’s American royalties on the album, “in perpetuity”, are to go to Feeding America, a charity which provides food to the needy. All of Dylan’s international royalties, in perpetuity, are to go to similar international charities. dylan christmas cover

More details at, including this:

Bob Dylan commented, “It’s a tragedy that more than 35 million people in this country alone — 12 million of those children – often go to bed hungry and wake up each morning unsure of where their next meal is coming from. I join the good people of Feeding America in the hope that our efforts can bring some food security to people in need during this holiday season.”

Christmas In The Heart will be the 47th album from Bob Dylan, and follows his worldwide chart-topping Together Through Life, released earlier this year. Songs performed by Dylan on this new album include, “Here Comes Santa Claus,” “Winter Wonderland,” “Little Drummer Boy” and “Must Be Santa.”

Of course the phrase “Christmas in the heart” can’t help but bring to mind the words of the reformed Ebenezer Scrooge from Charles Dickens’ famous story, when he promises, “I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all the year.”

And another famous quotation on the subject of Christmas with mention of the heart is that of George Matthew Adams, “Let us remember that the Christmas heart is a giving heart, a wide open heart that thinks of others first. The birth of the baby Jesus stands as the most significant event in all history, because it has meant the pouring into a sick world the healing medicine of love which has transformed all manner of hearts for almost two thousand years… Underneath all the bulging bundles is this beating Christmas heart.”

With Christ in my heart, I remain