Friday, September 28, 2007

Sovereign, Sustaining Grace

I just finished reading a sermon by John Piper titled Sustained By Sovereign Grace--Forever. What an encouragement! The main text is Jeremiah 32:36-41 which speaks of a new covenant that will be initiated by God and will sustain His people by His sovereign power. This is a must read. Piper sums up the kind of grace he is talking about in a short poem that he wrote that goes like this:

Not grace to bar what is not bliss,
Nor flight from all distress, but this:
The grace that orders our trouble and pain,
And then, in the darkness, is there to sustain.

You can read the sermon here.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

My Baby!

My beautiful wife Amber has posted some pictures of my beautiful daughter Makaya on her blog. I guess I like to surround myself with beauty... what can I say? You can check out the pics here. I will try to get some pics up on this site very soon. peace.

Monday, September 24, 2007

A Birthday and a New Ministry

Today is my sister Tamara's 17th birthday! She is an exceptionally bright and beautiful young woman that loves the Lord and interior design. (I think that means that if she goes into that field she will hang crosses on her clients' walls.) Anyway, HAPPY BIRTHDAY TAMARA! Also, Dr. Steven Lawson has founded a new ministry called New Reformation Ministries. If you are familiar with Dr. Lawson then you will know that this is a fitting name. The website has a lot of great resources and is worth a visit. Oh, and Jay, he graduated from Texas Tech.

Friday, September 21, 2007

Preterism-Idealism? I think I like it.

For a few hours now I have been searching the internet for articles on the date of Revelation. Here's what I found: Nobody knows when Revelation was written. In my last post I addressed how I really liked the "modified" idealist view championed by Dr. Kim Riddlebarger, but began to have some questions after reading an analysis of Revelation by Keith Mathison in his book Postmillennialism: An Eschatoloy of Hope that is written from a preterist perspective. In my search for answers I came across this article. It was written by John Noe who was apparently a Full Preterist for 10yrs. and then "converted?" to a Preterist-Idealist. The article is pretty long and probably boring if you're not real interested in this stuff (I haven't read it yet, so hopefully there's no heresy in it). At first glance though, it seems like this might be right on the money, that is, as long as Revelation was written before A.D. 70 (which I will address next time). Check out this quote:

"The revelation of Jesus Christ” (Rev 1:1) has a fuller significance and deeper character beyond its AD 70 eschatological fulfillment. Consequently, the preterist notion that it only applies to AD 70 when Christ supposedly came in “finality” is a weakness to be amended. And in a preterist-idealist synthesis, the strength of idealism remains that it “secures its relevance for all periods of the church’s history.” But its major weakness—i.e. “its refusal to see a firm historical anchorage”— is removed. That missing anchorage is supplied by Revelation’s A.D-70 fulfillment."

Sounds interesting to me. I'll read it, think more about it and get back to you. Any thoughts?

Now I'm Just Confused

For the past couple of weeks I have been reading Kim Riddlebarger's sermons on the book of Revelation. (You can find them here.) Dr. Riddlebarger describes his approach as a "modified" Idealism, and I must say, it makes a lot of since and really seeks to honor Christ. I am also in the process of reading Postmillennialism: An Eschatology of Hope by Keith Mathison. I really like the modified Idealism approach to Revelation. I agree with Amillennialism and the Idealist view fits well into that scheme. However, the Idealist interpretation of Revelation depends on a late date of Revelation (A.D. 95-96) and Postmillennialism embraces a Preterist approach to Revelation which depends on an early date of Revelation (ca A.D. 66-68). Dr. Riddlebarger (An Amillennialist that I highly respect), in the first sermon in his series, spends no time on this issue, leaving only a reference to Beale's The Book of Revelation. He merely states that Revelation was written "some time in the mid-90's". Mathison, however, spends quite a bit of time on this issue in Postmillennialism showing the internal and external evidence on an early date. The issue boils down to this: In A.D. 70 Jerusalem was completely destroyed by the Roman army. Now, if Revelation was written after A.D. 70 then the prophecies have either not yet been fulfilled (Futurism), are in the process of being fulfilled (Historicism), or serve as symbols of a continuous theme throughout the history of the Church showing that the Church will always be persecuted by antichrists and "beasts" but will always persevere through Christ(Idealism). But, if Revelation was written before A.D. 70 then that leaves us with the Preterism view that says most (Partial Preterism) or all (Full Preterism) of Revelation was fulfilled in the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple. For the sake of time I will leave the gritty details of internal and external evidence for the next entry. I really want to be an Idealist, but now I'm just confused. Thoughts are welcome.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

For those of you with iPods

I personally do not own an iPod... yet. However, I entered a drawing at my work to win a 30Gb video iPod that will be held next week. I'll let you know if I win. I was just over at and saw some crazy news that I thought I would let those of you who do not regularly visit that website know about. Apparently Reformed Theological Seminary (RTS) has put a lot of their seminary lectures, chapel services, and other events on iTunes FOR FREE! This is an invaluable resource. RTS is home to such professors as John Frame, Bruce Waltke, Ligon Duncan (Adjunct) and many others. To see a list of available files or to download iTunes click here. This makes me really want to win that iPod.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

A Lawsuit Against God?

I was reading Kim Riddlebarger's blog today and he had a post on a Nebraska senator (Ernie Chambers) that is suing God. Apparently the senator is attempting to prove a point about frivolous lawsuits. I am not 100% sure, but, after reading the article, I think that's on the blasphemous side. You can read the article here. Let me know what you think.

Monday, September 17, 2007

A Good Study of Revelation

Real quick...
There are traditionally four ways to interpret the book of Revelation.
1. Futurism
2. Preterism
3. Historicism
4. Idealism

Dr. Kim(ble) Riddlebarger is a reformed amillinnarian. He has written two books: A Case for Amillennialism and Man of Sin. He is a pastor and seminary professor and is in the process of writing a series on Revelation from a "tweaked" Idealism perspective on his blog. He has written 23 parts so far and is on Chapter 16 in Revelation. I think it is very convincing and worth your time. Check it out at:


if you still read this blog...

Okay, I know that it has been about nine months or so since my last post, so for those of you that still check this blog... my hats off to you. You guys are the definition of Perseverance of the Saints. I am actually not dead, but a lot of stuff has happened. Consider this post an "update". In November 2006 my wife and I found out that we were pregnant. By December I finished my first semester of seminary. In January 2007 (I think) we found out that our baby was a girl. I had to get a full-time job because of the pregnancy and had to drop two classes during the Spring of this year keeping just one night class (Intro. to Philosophy). I got a job at a marketing firm called G Franklin & Co. selling office supplies for Quill Office Supplies (who was our client) business-to-business. I eventually found out that I did not like that job very much. I was also a youth minister at a small Southern Baptist Church in Bagdad, KY called Indian Fork Baptist Church (you heard me). Due to various external factors (i.e. debt, pregnancy, etc.) Amber and I decided that it would be best for us to move back to Big Spring, TX which is were both of our parents' live. We didn't set a move date, but eventually we pretty much said, "How about Tuesday?" I dropped my class, we got a U-Haul, my dad flew in, and with the help of some great friends we packed up and headed for the Lone Star State. Oh, and some time in there Amber got a kidney stone and was in the hospital for nine days. (Word of Advice to my readers: DON'T GET KIDNEY STONES! ...EVER!) So we got back to TX and moved in with my parents. I was worried about finding a good church and so I looked on-line for the nearest Sovereign Grace church... just for fun, and wouldn't you know it, there was one in Midland, TX (45 minutes away)! We went, loved it, and are about to become members. We eventually moved into a 3bed, 1bath rent house in Big Spring and I got a job as a substance abuse counselor at Cornell Companies here in town which is a immigration prison and i love it. My salary is enough to eventually get us out of debt and to allow Amber to stay at home. (Check out her new blog at We had our baby girl August 13, 2007 at 4:41pm. Her name is Makaya Lynn Nichols; she was 7lbs. 4oz. and 20.5in. long. She is absolutely amazing! Amber had to have a Cessarian section and she has finally recovered to about 80-90% of her normal self. The Lord has been very gracious to us both. Our church, Christian Life Center, has been one of God's greatest gifts to us. We have made new friends, have become more aware of our sin, have been encouraged with kind words and acts of service beyond my imagination, and, most importantly, I think we see and love Christ more. I will talk more about CLC in future blogs. Please keep us in your prayers. This list of life events is not exhaustive, but you get the point. I am glad that you have found your way back to this "empty shell" (Eron?) of a blog. peace.