Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Not bitter about Mr Hannula's group

Really, I'm not bitter that my group, what a gang, had nearly four more hours of flight time than his. No sirree. Especially because we laid over in Chicago where my daughter and son in law live and so got to spend a good bit of time catching up with Brittany! In fact, I should be thanking our principal for his kindness. Good job, group B for your endurance and for all of you who showed up, bleary-eyed, to class on Wednesday morning bright and early!

Drizzle in Oxford

The weather was providential in that it was similar to the rain the day in 1556 when Bloody Mary finally saw to the burning of Thomas Cranmer for his leading role in orchestrating the Reformation in England, which at its best was about salvation by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. Got to be rid of that, says she.

Tears from Newmilns Scotland

Talking about generous hosts! We love Scotland!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

CHS worshiping with the dear folks at Loudoun Parish

Blessing to worship and hear the Word with the people at Loudoun Church Scotland

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Wedding at Glasgow Cathedral and Transport Museum

Fun day dodging the rain in Glasgow with some of the CHS gang and their hosts families. Wedding in full Scots regalia and bagpiper. So many adorable children! We're so grateful for the kind and generous hospitality of the good folks at Loudoun Parish Church, Newmilns, Scotland. Blessings on them all!

Friday, April 20, 2012

CHS at Bannockburn, Scotland

Wallace Monument then Bannockburn (1314). These kids are getting scary!

CHS in St Andrews Scotland

Dumping buckets of rain until moments before we decoached to explore the sites in this historic and charming place, one of my all time favorite places to be on the planet, though I enjoy it heaps more when my wife is at my side.

Shared with the students about Patrick Hamilton, here from an excerpt of a book I'm writing:

The first Scottish Reformation martyr, young Patrick Hamilton, learned that there was no bait and switch in the gospel. He had learned from Luther that men and women do not earn or keep salvation by the works of the law. In other words, he learned the radical nature of the gospel. And he knew that grace was free, and he could not be saved by the law. Before his burning at San Salvator’s College, St. Andrews, in 1528, Hamilton personified both law and gospel and then put them in the ring to contend for his soul:
"The law saith, “Where is thy righteousness, thy goodness, thy satisfaction?” The gospel saith, “Christ is thy righteousness, thy goodness, thy satisfaction.” The law saith, “Thou art bound and obliged to me, to the devil, and to hell.” The gospel saith, ‘Christ hath delivered thee from them all.”

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Dinner with friends in Edinburgh

The cab driver guffawed when we took a cab from the restaurant first to the Sheridan to see the Sugimotos off and then I told him on to the youth hostel.not typical cab fare deal

Lindesfarne CHS Absolutely gorgeous day!

Beautiful day. I especially enjoyed this visit to Holy Island since we haven't been here since Brittany's tour in 2006 I think. But also because I have been so immersed in my 8th century Anglo Saxon tale set here

Edinburgh devotions rainy morning

Devotions in Edinburgh

Gave overview of the Scottish Reformation and the role of John Knox and the Scots Confession, 1560. Talked about the inevitable decline away from the gospel that has happened in Scotland and in Edinburgh--and everywhere else where there was nice a great outpouring of the grace of the gospel. Why is this true? Where does the devil attack in every generation? How do we guard against the decline in our own day?

Note how the language used in the excerpt from the Council of Trent, the Catholic Counter Reformation uses theological phraseology to denounce the gospel doctrines of the Reformers:

If anyone says that the sinner is justified by faith alone, let him be anathema. If anyone says that men are justified either by the sole imputation of Christ's righteousness, or by the sole remission of sins, let him be anathema.... If anyone says that this righteousness received is not preserved and also not increased before God through good works, but that those works are merely the fruits and signs of justification, but not the cause of the increase, let him be anathema. If anyone says that the good works of the one justified are gifts of God in such a way that they are not also the good merits of the one justified, let him be anathema.

"Satan's stratagem is, that he does not attempt an avowed destruction of the whole gospel, but he taints its purity by introducing false and corrupt opinions....We must exercise the utmost caution lest we allow any counterfeit to be substituted for the pure doctrine of the gospel."
John Calvin

“The safest road to hell is the gradual one—the gentle slope, soft underfoot, without sudden turnings, without milestones, without signposts.”
C. S. Lewis

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Desmond at the Bakehouse in Olney

Desmond was seven last time he had his picture with me at the Bakehouse I feature in Mr Pipes and the British Hymn Makers set in Olney

Student impressions of the tour so far

Miss Battle gave devotions about Durham cathedral and the small confined area for women at the far back and the glorious oneness of the body of Christ, but alas the distortions that creep in.

Some shared their impressions so far:

Donny was impressed with how Newton was different from most in his day because he loved his flock and gave himself wholly to his calling to bring his congregation to Christ.

Rachel was impressed with how much Shakespeare was influenced by biblical themes especially forgiveness and our need for grace.

Elsie was impressed with the warmth of the people at Cambridge Presbyterian, their love and generosity, the supper and hospitality.

Hadrian's Wall with a wonderful gang

It was a perfect evening up on Steel Rigg tonight and I'm here on a lichen covered stone wall in a hot spot in the middle of nowheresville Northumbria. There is such a wonderful spirit among the young people tonight. I had a thrilling conversation with one of our students who was deeply and eternally moved by Ted Donnelly's sermon "show me Jesus" Sunday evening. Pray that the Spirit will move mightily in the hearts of these kids--and us.