2005 Blog Archives
Monday, May 30
AM Today is the big day,
beginning with our flight to and stop-over in Zurich, then our arrival in Addis Ababa about
midnight on Wednesday. On Friday night we will attend the graduation
banquet for the Evangelical Theological College, then on Saturday I will
speak at their commencement service. The following Monday I begin teaching
3 weeks of Intermediate Greek at the Meserete Kristos College (Mennonite)
and lecture at the University of Addis Ababa. The following week I
begin teaching 6 weeks of Elementary Greek at ETC (which we will also be
videotaping for anyone wishing to use it, including homeschoolers). Every Sunday is booked for preaching/teaching, as are
several Saturdays. Becky Lynn will be launching our new CD ministry by meeting
with church leaders throughout the capital. She also hopes to
visit with Bereket in Gondar and to distribute the eyeglasses so many of
you donated. I am taking with me 50 copies of Learn to
Read New Testament Greek as well as numerous handouts and supplements.
Becky will return in 4 weeks to harvest and can our vegetables, and Lord
willing I will be back in Virginia on July 28. Well,
there's not much more to say except to
assure each and every one of you that your Savior loves you very, very much -- and, by the way,
so does this writer. Fare thee well, my friend.
AM What a wonderful email
to start our trip with:
I just read your Trial
and Temptations letter. Today in our Home Church Fellowship ... (
which started after the Saint Louis conference) we studied Romans 8.
Still being very convicted, I read from you "The flesh must be kept in
the place of death." I plan on keeping this simple but profound truth
close in my mind as I continue forward in my life long relationship
with my Master who loves me.
Saturday, May 28
A belated Saturday shout out to
our faithful readers. Apparently our server was down for much of the day,
but I've been so busy I didn't have time to notice. A few dozen friends
took a quick trip to Ethiopia with us today, which concluded with everyone
sampling some genuine (and spicy!) Ethiopian food.
Earlier today my son and I tried to get some
hay baled when our baler went ka-fluey. I think a belt needs replacing.
Tomorrow Becky and I will say our farewells, first at Averett Baptist
Church during the Sunday School hour, and then at Crystal Hill Baptist
Church during their morning service. In the afternoon we will also be
honoring our Mecklenburg war dead at a memorial service in town. About 60
percent of them were killed during the War of 1861-65. My bugler son will
have the honor of playing taps in their memory.
Our CDs for Ethiopian pastors have gotten
waylaid in Ohio and are now scheduled to arrive at Bradford Hall on
Tuesday, a day after our departure. But the Lord is in control of this
detail, as with every detail of our trip, and if necessary we will reroute
the CDs to Addis. If we don't have them in time for the graduation banquet
next Friday night we will just issue coupons which the students can trade
in for the real deal.
(My wife just told everyone to look outside at the beautiful site, so I
grabbed the camera and here's the result).
managed somehow to complete all my grading yesterday right after our
commencement, then was invited to two after-graduation celebrations (one
with Chinese food, the other with Korean food), then enjoyed an Ethiopian
dinner with my family in Raleigh. I feel rested for the trip, although
today was a bit hectic. We have a very special family visiting with us for
the weekend, and after we leave they will be touring Civil War sites in
the area with Nathan as guide. They might even be asked to help Nate get
up our hay next week.
Well, gotta go and cook supper for everybody. Tonight's menu: pancakes.
Friday, May 27
The latest addition to our home
page is called A Boy and a Basket.
This email brought a big smile to
My name is Z. P. and I
am 11 yrs old. I read about the score of the incoming Bible College
students and I was appalled. I took the test and I got 100% correct in
under ten minutes. I guess the reason is that my parents chose to
homeschool my siblings and I. I am praying when I get older, I can go
to a Bible College and be a pastor.
Thursday, May 26
Some food for
Darryl M. Erkel:
I can only say that my
articles, though written on a popular level, have blown some serious
holes in much of our inherited ecclesiology, and has exposed them for
what they truly are -- traditions of men devoid of apostolic sanction.
In my efforts, however, to expose such unbiblical traditions, my
articles have consistently stressed the importance of qualified and
well-trained leadership (even if I am not particularly supportive of the
seminary system), order and structure within house-church meetings (as
opposed to the “free-for-all” mindset in far too many of them), and I
have consistently quoted evangelical scholars who happen to agree with a
particular point under discussion (even though they would not
necessarily endorse all of my positions). My purpose in doing so is to
demonstrate that my interpretations are neither novel nor bizarre, but
that many mainline New Testament scholars have reached similar
A fellow agrarian is thinking about starting
calf naming contest. Here at Rosewood Farm we have devised a very simple system. We name our
calves alphabetically. We started with Alfie and have reached George. In
between we've acquired Bert, Charlie, Herr Detweiler, Ernie (as in Bert
and Ernie), and Frank. After Alfie and Bert end up in our freezer, then
we'll get "H" and "I." And on it goes....
Grow It, Don't Mow
AM "Ugly" tomatoes
AM Last night my son and
I enjoyed browsing
Here's a sample:
We wouldn't trade country livin' fur
AM Will the UK
wins a national geography bee (thanks
Icky). The winning question:
"Lake Gatun, an artificial
lake that constitutes part of the Panama Canal system, was created by
damming which river?"
Below: A view of Lake
Gatun from the
AM Please continue to
Currently 16 full-time
pastors and nearly 900 Eritrean Christians are known to be jailed in
prisons, military confinement camps and shipping containers for meeting
secretly for prayer and worship outside government-approved churches.
None of the prisoners have
been charged in court or brought to trial by government authorities, who
since May 2002 have refused to legalize religious groups outside the
Orthodox, Catholic, Lutheran and Muslim faiths.
AM Last night I had this
photo taken of our Wednesday night prayer meeting group. I thank God for
each and every one of these precious brothers and sisters. Becky and I
will sorely miss them while we are gone.
Wednesday, May 25
Any family that drives a 15-passenger van
has got my attention.
PM Rank these languages
in order of their popularity among homeschooling families: German, Latin,
French, and Spanish. Go
here for the answer. Someday I'd like to see New Testament Greek in
the top four.
PM Here's a
map of Rosewood Farm, in case you are planning on attending our
Ethiopia Day this Saturday from 2:00-4:00 pm.
PM Who said it?*
What a cruel thing is war:
to separate and destroy families and friends, and mar the purest joys
and happiness God has granted us in this world; to fill our hearts with
hatred instead of love for our neighbors, and to devastate the fair face
of this beautiful world.
* eeL. E. R.
PM We have finally
finished the garden fence (except for the gate hinges), thanks to some
free cedar slabs from our neighbor's sawmill. Next project: Installing the
tin roof on the horse barn.
AM In order to allow more
students to be able to participate, our Reformation Tour has been
shortened to 8 days and rescheduled for next May 27 - June 4, 2006. Please
call Mrs. Rowena Drinkhouse at
Reformation Tours for more information. Her number is 1-800-303-5534.
AM From time to time the
Lord blesses me with wonderful emails such as the following:
I so appreciate you and your
family and thank the Lord your ministry to us through SEBTS, your
website, your books, and your example. (I know all these are by His grace
and for His glory!)
documents of the British Empire once bore the four letters O.H.M.S.,
meaning "On His Majesty's Service." Just so, we who are Christians are in
the service of the King. What a blessed privilege to be partners
together in this great task!
AM Now on our home page:
Trails and Temptations.
AM Here's a very
thoughtful response to a recent essay:
article "Call Me a Biblicist If You Like" you couldn't be more
accurate. I believe this problem is one in which every culture
faces. How easy it is to regard some human exposition of the Word as
authoritative as the Word itself. Karl Barth did just this. He
believed that a sermon was the "spoken Word". Catholicism does the
same (according to Vatican II) by revering tradition as much as
Scripture. It is a trap that every student of the Word must avoid!
Tuesday, May 24
AM My hosts at the
Evangelical Theological College in Addis Ababa will be Frew Tamrat (left) and
Semeon Mulatu (right). Frew, the dean, is a graduate of Gordon-Conwell; Simeon,
the principal, studied at Dallas Seminary. These are two great guys!
Last year I spoke on "How to Study the Bible
for All It's Worth." This time around I'll be tackling first year Greek.
I can't wait to get started.
Here Becky shares a wife's perspective in Hosanna.
She likened biblical preaching to preparing healthy, well-balanced meals. During this trip she will be devoting two entire
Saturdays to teaching pastors' wives. She is a phenomenal speaker.
AM I am currently
an essay called "Trails and Temptations." It's about what my equestrian
friends have taught me about the Christian life through the years.
AM Spurgeon saw an
rain and grace. Being a farmer makes me realize just how dependant I
am upon God both to send and to withhold rain. We were hoping to bale
today, but God has sent more rain overnight, and I think we'll have to wait a few
days before raking and baling. We have absolutely NO control over the
barometer, and this is how it should be.
AM Tuesday shout-out to
those who have committed to
praying for Becky and me as we leave for Africa. My sincerest and
There's an irony
involved in this seeping of congregationalism into Anglicanism. The
Congregationalist Church's emphasis on local autonomy for individual
the backbone of English Christian democracy. The church which nurtured
Cromwell, Bunyan - and Tony Benn - hated bishops and kings in equal
measure. It pointed out, rightly, that "episkope" in the New Testament
simply means "oversight" - something which the early Christian communities
exercised among themselves as a federation. It did not mean a career
AM New York's
Museum of Biblical Art opens. It boasts an original Erasmus 1516 Greek
New Testament. When I was a doctoral student at the University of Basel, I
had the privilege of actually handling a copy of this New Testament in the
library's third sub-basement. What a treat. It almost beat riding a
25-footer at Sunset on a glassy day. At any rate:
AM Here's a sample of
some simple Latin. I saw it at
this website. I know
many of you have studied this language. But studying it and knowing it are
two different things. How easily can you translate this passage?
Pagina hac domestica certior fies,
candide lector, de rebus classicis quas in aranea nostra mirabili totum
terrarum complectente invenias. Praeterea, si vis, haec pagina te ducet
non solum ad bibliothecas
huius paginae in quibus conduntur textus rerum scriptorum oratorum
poetarum aliorumque auctorum Latinorum sed etiam ad vincula electronica
ubique terrarum sita quae nonnullas res Graecas Romanasque tibi pandent.
AM Introducing the
AM You are cordially
invited! This Saturday is Ethiopia Day at
Bradford Hall. From 2:00 - 4:00 pm there will be continuous excitement,
including a showing of "The Record of Redemption," an SIM film shot
50 years ago. See "Tex" Lapsley as a young missionary! See his
little blond-headed daughter Becky playing with her Ethiopian friends! We
will also be showing the video we took of our trip last fall. Last but not
least, come and sample real Ethiopian food. The kids will love it because
they have to eat it with their fingers!
We are located at 2691 White House Road,
Nelson, VA 24580. Email us if you need directions.
Come One, Come
Monday, May 23
During the winter months my wife makes the
greatest home-made soups. I think my favorite is her corn chowder, which
is out of this world. I see I am not the only
soup lover out there.
CLOWNING AROUND AT
CHURCH: "All are invited to come in clown dress, big
hats, floppy shoes or some sort of foolish garb. Those watching on the
Internet might even be foolish enough to put on some white face or a big
grease-paint smile as we worship God and learn about the structure of the
Eucharist by being the circus which came to town and to church on that
day. I look forward to worshiping with you." Read
AM I think these
are very helpful.
AM Here's our son cutting
more hay in a field near his house. What would we ever do without his
abilities and help?
This is one
of my favorite views of Nathan's farm house. The outbuilding in the left
foreground dates to the late 1700s.
AM The latest addition to
our home page is entitled
Call Me a Biblicist If You Like.
AM Digitizing the
AM Monday morning
shout-out to our good friend Edwin Sineath, who traveled all the way from
Winston-Salem to be with us at Crystal Hill Baptist Church. He later
joined us for a delicious Sunday dinner at Bradford Hall. Doesn't Becky
Lynn set a pretty table?
AM Deo volente, we leave for Ethiopia
one week from today.
Saturday, May 21
PM It's been a busy day
here at Rosewood Farm. Below is our first cutting of the year -- horse
quality hay. Lord willing, and if it doesn't rain, we plan to bail on
the newest members of our ever-growing family: Frank and George. They are
four days old and bottle-fed twice daily. Ain't they sweeeet?
poles, poles, yes we love our poles. My
wife calls this "Tomato Alley." I can already taste them "mater"
Rusty (with his harem in tow) says "Hi."
PM Mr. Adam Valle linked
to an essay of mine at his blog.
Adam is a music student at Southern Seminary in Louisville. Thank you so
much, Adam, and may God richly bless your studies.
Shepherds are moving forward nicely with their house-building project
on their beautiful property (pictured below). From what I can tell from
it looks like they will have a large front porch like we do. Becky and I
wish them well. It took us three years to build Bradford Hall, and before
that we had to clear land, dig a pond, etc. There's so much work to do on
a farm, but it's good, healthy work that you will never regret. God bless
AM Tomorrow I'll be
Crystal Hill Southern
Baptist Church in Halifax, VA, at 11:00 a.m.
AM Don't forget our
Ethiopian Day next Saturday.
AM It's still not over in
AM A reader brings up a
I took the test:
And I missed two! Should have only been one, though, considering how many
times I've read "The Brothers Karamazov"!! NOW....which question should I
have gotten right from my dozens of readings of Dostoevsky's great
AM Yesterday we spent the
evening shopping in Raleigh, mostly for Ethiopia: Wal-Mart, Target, Home
Depot. Glad it's over. Driving in Raleigh is like driving in L.A. The best
part of the evening was dinner at the Olive Garden, where a genuine
Italian server entertained us royally. What a blast!
Friday, May 20
PM If you live near
Southside Virginia, please mark your calendars for Ethiopia Day here at
the farm. It will be held a week from tomorrow on Saturday, May 28, from
2:00-4:00 pm. More details soon.
PM Today has been cloudy
and rainy but during a brief spell of sunshine I snapped these pics.
Below: Becky's plants are beginning to come up. Note how she planted her
beans in a circle.
Here's one of several fields we planted this
year. It contains mostly corn, peas, and beans.
I always enjoy a walk along the farm paths
on my day off. Here Alfie and the goats come to greet me and Miss Sheba.
In the background you can just make out our new horse barn (still under
I'm so glad my son planted these flowers
after we completed building our house. Bradford Hall is completely
encircled with these lovelies.
AM The latest entry on
our home page is called The Fashion of
AM Tomorrow I will be
addressing my pastor friends of the Beulah Baptist Association at their
annual meeting at Providence Baptist Church in Roxboro, NC. My topic:
Last week I spoke at Hebron Christian Church, where our neighbor Mr.
Vaughan attended until he passed away two months ago. For years, he and
only one other person met faithfully in this beautiful old clapboard
church building, but in recent months the Lord Jesus has been enlarging
the flock. I praise God for the 30 who were in attendance last week (a 10
year record), all of them eager to grow in the Lord.
AM Friday shout-out to
Jared Henson and a hearty "Thank You" for the glasses he donated for
AM Have you seen this
excellent series on
Shepherding a Child's Heart?
The "Library CD" that we have prepared for
Ethiopian pastors contains 100 books (72 English, 27 Amharic, 1
Greek). This amounts to 18,985 pages of material that my father-in-law
personally scanned. The
disk contains 693 megabytes, which can either be downloaded to one's hard
drive or retained on the CD. The CDs will be sold for 20 birr each ($2.00
two weeks we will be presenting a complimentary Library CD to each of the
90 graduates of the Evangelical Theological College in Addis Ababa. If
you'd like to learn more about ETC, here's their
AM This email from an
"eStudent" warmed my heart:
Dear Dr. Black,
I briefly met you last
year during the Uniting Church and Home Conference in St. Louis. Your
book and teaching on "The Myth of Adolescence" was the right message
at the right time in our lives....
Well I just wanted to
drop you a note saying thank you for your teaching and encouraging
words. Your website has been a great blessing to us.
Your eStudent in
AM 10 days.
Thursday, May 19
AM Nearly 1 in 6 of our
active troops are female, and some are on the
front lines. Here's what
Michael Peroutka thinks:
But, when women are killed
and maimed-for-life in combat this is no laughing matter. To believe, as I
do, that our wives, daughters and/or sisters ought not to be in the
military where, in combat, they can be killed and maimed-for-life is no
"little thing" about which to disagree.
AM Lately we have been
discussing whether to get a donkey for our farm. We had one named Hosanna
when we lived in California. She would bray every time someone pulled into
the driveway even though she couldn't see the front of the house. She
quickly became the best "watch dog" we ever had. Here are some facts about
donkey senses I found very interesting.
good reason not to watch TV.
From the BBC: Kelly Slater makes surfing
history by scoring a perfect 20 out of 20 to clinch the Billabong Pro
Tahiti title. Here he's about to get tubed royally.
AM Thanks, Jay, for the
update on Kyle's surgery. Praise the Lord that everything went so
well. And thanks to the Austins
for linking to our essay on Ethiopia.
AM Terri Gross interviews
AM Here's a nearby
beauty in need of restoration.
AM Quote of the Day (Jean
According to a comparison
which the medieval monks owe to St. Augustine, who was himself indebted
for it to Plato,
"Holy Scripture is a
In it one sees the picture he should reproduce. As one reads he can
compare himself with what he ought to be and try to acquire what the
picture needs so that it can resemble the model."
I love this metaphor, don't you? It is
against the mirror of the Scriptures that I seek daily to measure myself,
though I continue to fall short of the ideal, both as a man, husband,
father, and servant of Christ. I'm glad the mirror is perfect, even
if I am not.
AM Missionaries seeking
AM How we got the word "filibuster."
AM The value of
Wednesday, May 18
Herbers said she wore a sash to show sympathy for the gay and lesbian
community. Their sexual orientation "is a gift from God just as much as my
gift of being a female is," she said. Read more about
rainbow sashed Catholics.
AM My wife prepared the
yummiest Mexican food the other evening, complete with guacamole made from
avocados my mother-in-law sent Becky for her birthday. They were shipped
from the left coast. Scrumptious! Reminded me of the fresh avocados we
used to pick from our backyard trees in California. Did I say California?
Seems like eons ago when we lived in the erstwhile Golden State.
The books on
the table are still being sorted through. Most will be going to Ethiopia
with us for use in one of their Bible schools.
AM Wednesday morning
shout-out to the MacNutt family for sending us some more eyeglasses for
Ethiopia. They arrived yesterday safe and sound. A hearty "Exerstalin!"
Tuesday, May 17
AM Again, Hawaii is
number one. (By the way, can you pronounce
AM Where is this natural
wonder located? The only hint I'll give you is that it's in the US.
AM This has got to be one
of the worst wipe-out sequences I've ever seen. It was taken at Waimea's
shorebreak and, no, the surfer is NOT standing on his board in frame three.
And to think that on a good day like that he could have been riding some
pretty clean breaks at Pupukea or Pipeline.
AM Have you checked the
AM The Thoroughbred Horse
was made to run and to run fast, and at greater lengths than its famous
rival, the Quarter Horse. And, like any race horse, it is used to running
anti-clockwise. As I aired out my Thoroughbred yesterday evening after a
long day of working on the barn, I decided to begin training him to gallop
in a clockwise direction. I could tell he was eager to slay dragons
by the way he was constantly pounding the ground with his foreleg while being saddled. It took him, maybe, three minutes to figure out
what I was asking for, and off we went, afterburners blazing. After
several laps in a clockwise direction I slowed him down and walked him back to the pasture. As I
praised him to high heaven, you could tell he was pleased with himself. How
eager to work! How quick to learn! Yet how gentle an animal! In fact,
gentleness is the horse's greatest quality. Let us, then, do nothing to
gets oats every day to keep him in top shape, even when he hasn't been ridden. Yesterday he proved
again that he deserves every mouthful.
AM Are Baptists a
AM Covenant News now has
AM The latest on the
13 days. Here's one currency we won't be
using in Zurich:
AM A former student sent
me this heartwarming email from Colorado:
I only have a few moments before I must leave the office. But with this
moment, let me tell you just how much your thoughts and writings mean to
this disciple of Christ. I appreciate them, because they point me to the
Truth (with a capital "T"). Thank you, oh servant of the Lord, for
guiding others back to Jesus. He is the answer.
I have no
greater joy than to see my students (past, present, and future) walking in
the Truth. I thank the Lord Jesus for all of my academic charges through
29 years of teaching. I sure don't deserve them, but I sure do appreciate
Monday, May 16
AM Here's a nice email I
We are taking one step more on a journey to learn Greek. A friend said
his seminary professor claimed learning a little Greek is dangerous. But
I'm hoping to start and maybe my kids will carry on beyond what I can
learn. My 5 yr old son can now call me Abba. The kids will learn quicker
than I can.
I may not be master plumber but I can fix a leak, solder a joint and
change a wax seal on the toilet. Time to start fixing the leaks and
unplugging the blockages on my study of the texts.
Thanks for the links on your site. But could you provide some coaching?
1) I am confused by the appearance that there are at least 3 versions of
the Greek NT. Which one to buy to start with? Have you heard of
Nathaniel Bowditch? He learned languages by reading the Gospels in
parallel to what he knew.
2) Which of your Greek books should I start reading?
Looking forward to your DVD course. We'd be happy to buy a "beta" version
to test drive if you need.
gist of my reply:
beginning to learn Greek it really doesn't matter which Greek New
Testament you use. Later on you will learn that there are significant
differences between these texts - but that's for later. If you are just
starting out, you might want to consider using Learn to Read New
Testament Greek. It's suitable for self-study and has a key to all of
the exercises in the back of the book, along with a fold-out chart of the
entire Greek verb system. If you do use this book, I would be happy to
send you an additional workbook along with a cassette tape for
pronunciation practice - gratis. After you have completed one year of
Greek, you can read my intermediate grammar called It's Still Greek to
Me, as well as my basic introduction to Greek linguistics:
Linguistics for Students of New Testament Greek. If you are interested
in learning the differences between the various Greek texts, then New
Testament Textual Criticism: A Concise Guide will be of help. All of
these books (and other Greek texts) are linked in my
AM World's Easiest Quiz
(via Charles Porter):
1) How long did
the Hundred Years War last?
2) Which country makes Panama hats?
3) From which animal do we get catgut?
4) In which month do Russians celebrate the October Revolution?
5) What is a camel's hair brush made of?
6) The Canary Islands in the Pacific are named after what animal?
7) What was King George VI's first name?
8) What color is a purple finch?
9) Where are Chinese gooseberries from?
10) What is the color of the black box in a commercial airplane?
your answers below.
1) How long did the Hundred Years War last?
2) Which country makes Panama hats? Ecuador
3) From which animal do we get catgut? Sheep and Horses
4) In which month do Russians celebrate the October Revolution?
5) What is a camel's hair brush made of? Squirrel fur
6) The Canary Islands in the Pacific are named after what animal?
7) What was King George VI's first name? Albert
8) What color is a purple finch? Crimson
9) Where are Chinese gooseberries from? New Zealand
10) What is the color of the black box in a commercial airplane?
Orange, of course.
AM DBO is honored to be included in Sallie's
Mercy at the Heart's Door:
Charles Spurgeon once
said “The Lord’s mercy often rides to the door of the heart upon the black
horse of affliction.” I know of no other affliction in someone’s life
where this is more true than the burden of carrying a past abortion.
During the years I have spent listening to men and women tell their
abortion stories, the one thing that I have noticed is the pervasive
nature of abortion. The cloud of it seems to hang over ever area of life.
It is the invisible elephant in every room of the house, always present,
always in the way, always there to stumble upon, though never mentioned.
While other sins are forgiven and forgotten, the sin of abortion, even
when confessed and forgiven, seems to cast a shadow that brings a quality
of sadness and grief over its owner. How often I have wept over this fact.
AM Thank you for praying
for the Ethiopian elections.
AM We love residing in
Mecklenburg County, VA. It's a great place to live, especially for antiquarians like us. For
some wonderful photos of our county, including historic Prestwould
Plantation (below), go
AM The latest addition to
our home page is called Hidden in Christ.
Saturday, May 14
PM Take the
South Asia quiz!
PM This Sunday is fasting
and prayer day for India.
Our family will also be praying for the Ethiopian elections.
FARM UPDATE: Here's a photo of the "farm project du jour." The
basic framing of the horse barn is now completed, and we've started the
external walls. To the left is the tack room; to the right is Becky's
This morning our son surprised us with
Becky's favorite, yellow roses which he grows in front of his big barn.
and Hames, do you see your drawings on the cupboard doors?)
We think our puppy Sheba has finally
decided to wear her ears in the "down" position. We think.
Not only has she been busy arranging her
ears, she's also learning "wife" skills, one of which is to "love on" and
tend to her husband. (Another reason why we call her the "Proverbs
PM Tonight's menu,
prepared by yours truly: Chinese food. Yes, I used my special "secret"
ingredient. We also used our own goat meat, by the way.
AM THE project for the
day is to finish the framing for the horse barn. Will there be a photo of
it posted this evening to this blog? Stay tuned....!
AM An alert reader
pointed out a dead link to
Scriptures: New Testament Essays in Honor of J. Harold Greenlee. You
can access the book at
Eisenbrauns. F. F. Bruce, Bruce Metzger, Keith Elliott, and other
scholars join me in saluting the author of several important works on
New Testament Greek.
AM A hearty shout-out to
all who took the Bible Test. Thus far, no one has scored lower than 80
AM A warm welcome to
Bilbo's Babblings, which has just posted a Forum Linguae. May the Lord
Jesus richly bless your efforts, young man!
Friday, May 13
AM Missions opportunities
abound. Would you prayerfully consider them?
AM I've been re-reading a
delightful little book that my friend Harold Greenlee gave me. It's called
With Two Suitcases and a Carry-On and recounts Harold and Ruth
Greenlee's adventures as missionaries to Colombia. Harold also taught
Greek at Asbury Theological Seminary for years. You can perhaps see why I
feel such a close affinity to him.
In 1992 it
was my privilege to edit a book in Harold's honor entitled
Scriptures: New Testament Essays in Honor of J. Harold Greenlee. As I
wrote in the preface to that book, "It would be difficult to imagine one
in whom the erudition of the university and the gentleness of the Spirit
more closely cohere than in the life and ministry of this doctor of the
church." It is this very same balance between mind and heart that I strive
to emulate and to produce in the lives of my precious students.
AM Friday shout-out to
the saints at Hebron Christian Church in Nelson, VA and Hitesburg Baptist
Church in Hitesburg, VA, where I will be speaking this Sunday at 9:45 and
AM 17 days.
AM A friend from Texas
response to our essay
I took the Bible test you had online today. While I consider myself
pretty well schooled in the Word, I often am lax on my ability to give
people exact book, chapter and verse. Still, I scored a 90 on the test (I
messed up questions 13 and 16). The questions weren't that hard, and I
consider myself to be a good student, but not great student. My score,
based on the questions asked, should be average. If it isn't, then you
are right. Our fellow Christians are ignorant about items they should
know about their own faith. We are truly in a post-Christian America, and
folks should wake up to this fact.
Just because a U.S. Supreme Court Justice once described America as a
Christian nation once, doesn't mean it's true for all time. Like the
test; it was good to check myself. I've got a lot of work to do, as I'm a
work in progress.
AM Here's the latest on
parliamentary elections in Ethiopia. Please keep the situation in your
Praise the Lord God for the rain He
sent last night, along with a magnificent lightening storm. We
had been praying fervently for precipitation ever since we planted our
crops. Here's a list of what we've sown so far this year:
tomatoes (3 kinds)
purple hull peas
bush snap beans (4 kinds)
okra (2 Kinds)
alfalfa, clover, orchard grass, wheat, and fescue hay
your garden doing thus far?
Thursday, May 12
The latest addition to our home page is
called Take the Bible Test!
Wednesday, May 11
AM My wife and I visited
the Cairo Museum partly to see the King Tut exhibition. Now scholars
believe they can reconstruct his
AM Calling all WWII
buffs. Click on this link
then scroll down to listen to an actual interview with Colonel von
Lindeiner of Stalag Luft 3, the camp from which the "Great
Escape" took place. Below: Faces of the 50 shot by the Gestapo after
escaping from Hitler's "escape proof" camp.
AM The value of
Urgent Prayer Request: The Ethiopian Elections are this Sunday, and
there is a possibility of civil unrest. Please pray for this
in Ethiopian history.
official. I fully support this vitally important measure. One of the
resolution's co-sponsors is Dr. Voddie Baucham, a homeschooling father.
AM The latest essay on
our home page is called Our
AM Today is chicken'
pickin' day at the farm.
Why NOT a weekly meal?
AM A big Tuesday shout-out
to my Korean students who brought me two jars of
last weekend. I have just over a jar left. Phenomenal stuff!
AM Arianna launches her
AM After my son and I
worked on the horse barn yesterday, Traveler and I went for a ride, but
not before my wife snapped this photo. Ain't he a crack up? (The horse,
silly!) I took him to
an oval-shaped field and away we went.
Man, that horse loves to run. He must have thought he was back on the
track in California. I figure, with my
current busy schedule, I can get in maybe 10 more rides before Ethiopia. Boy, am
I gonna miss Trav.
Monday, May 9
AM The latest addition to
our home page is called Our Country Home.
AM Up goes the horse
AM 21 days.
AM We enjoyed the prime rib buffet at a local restaurant on the lake for
Mother's Day. I never tire of Becky's beautiful hats.
AM A reader notified me
about his Bible study website.
AM Here's a nice email I
I just wish to express my
appreciation for you and your ministry. I discovered your name
associated with one of your books yesterday in the Bible book store
here in my home town, so I decided to look you up on the Internet.
What I found out about you in regards to your Christian faith and your
political persuasion was quite pleasing to me. I intend on reading
more of your works, which I believe will add to the depth of my
understanding of God's Word and our present political scene here in
AM Monday shout-out to my
Thoroughbred Traveler. It took two of us to saddle him on Saturday, but he
sure gave me a great ride. (Maybe he had the Derby on his mind?) He is a
very talented horse, a great companion, and smart as a whip. I thank God
Saturday, May 7
AM Believe it or not, the
Swiss are into surfing
Why blogs are like
AM I just finished
reading my good friend Voddie Baucham's latest book,
The Ever-Loving Truth. I highly recommend it.
AM Missionary martyr Jim
Elliott on "extremism":
For you, brother, I pray that
the Lord might crown this year with His goodness and in the coming one
give you a hallowed dare-devil spirit in lifting the biting sword of Truth,
consuming you with a passion that is called by the cultured citizen of
but known to God as that saintly madness that led His Son through bloody
sweat and hot tears to agony on a rude Cross
For a brief
biography of this man of God, go
AM Pat Buchanan once
called them the two wings of the same bird of prey. Chuck Baldwin
AM Tonight I'll be
speaking at the Triangle Youth Fellowship
in Raleigh. Topic: The myth of adolescence.
TYF attendance includes students from the
AM I love this photo of
Zurich. In just three and a half weeks we'll be there on our way to
Friday, May 6
PM The latest addition to
our home page is called With a Mother's Love.
AM A warm welcome to
Ashley and Jonathan Erdman, who are celebrating their second wedding
anniversary by spending a few days with us at Bradford Hall. Ashley is a
registered nurse and Jonathan is earning his M.Div. at Southeastern
AM Once again it's time
to get caught up on emails. Here's a response to our essay called
Club Med Christians:
not agree more that Christ calls us to do more than shout praises. We
have to stand for our belief in Him no matter what the cost or
consequence. My question is, to what level do Bible-believing
Christians go to in order to "infiltrate" the governments that are
moving their people away from Christ? Do we evangelize in private, and
effect change from the bottom up, or do we move directly into
government and change law? I do not think it is our duty to withdraw
from the world. We can't be salt and light if no one can taste or see
Christ in us.
several readers shared their thoughts about Laura Bush's
humor. Here are two letters:
I watched Laura Bush's
performance live---it was an embarrassment...and a revelation. Totally
inappropriate comments...trying to show the pagan world she is "with
Dear Mr. Black,
As always, most
eloquently said. Excellent commentary. The Book of Isaiah clearly
states that we will be judged for continuing to tolerate and appoint
those that are in rebellion to God's Word to rule over us. We either
follow the Laws of God or the dictates of man. There is no middle
AM Friday morning
shout-out to my former assistant Mr.
Abidan Shah and heartiest congratulations on becoming the new
headmaster at Norlina Christian School.
AM With Mother's Day
approaching, here's a
testimony you won't want to miss.
AM Did you know that
ancient ostraca have much to tell us about biblical culture and the
Here's an example.
Thursday, May 5
AM The latest essay on
our home page is called Club Med Christianity.
the following will contain positive praise of my husband, if this is hard
for you to swallow, please do not read on."
Wednesday, May 4
AM Just posted to our
home page: Let Pastors Teach.
AM My carpenter son is
most patient with his unskilled partner, but I have been learning to hone my
limited carpentry skills by watching him. Among the lessons
many ways, today’s 'Christianity' is no different than an
orphanage. The well being of the children is secondary to the maintenance
of the institution, and the children know it."
AM Because she is a puppy
and still has "accidents," Sheba is permitted in the breakfast room only,
though she has begun to test her boundaries. Here she is waiting to lick
last night's supper dishes -- and exercising tremendous self-discipline by
not straying too far into the dining room. Ain't she the sweetest pup?
Here's Shiloh during the same meal. He is a
most polite beggar, as you can see.
AM Phil Newton
of South Woods Baptist Church in Memphis just sent me a copy of his latest
Elders in Congregational Life. Judging from the title of the first
chapter -- "Why Baptist Elders Is Not an Oxymoron" -- I know I'm
going to like this book. Phil has also produced an excellent series on the
of Hebrews that I highly recommend.
One of the problems we have occasionally with our
goats is foot rot, a very serious disease that requires immediate
Spiritual foot rot is just as pandemic, it seems.
Tuesday, May 3
PM The latest addition to
our home page is called We Ought To
AM A reader sent me this
interesting link to
AM And here's a great
guide to New Testament Greek
AM My good friend Lewis
Goldberg is no longer publishing The Patriotist, but you can still find
some great essays in its
AM And I thought surfing
in New York City was
How do you say cowabunga in Gaelic?
Here are some good
AM I'm in a nostalgic
mood again today. It was a year ago that we had wonderful vacation camping
out west. We drove to our old stomping grounds that we used to visit when
we lived in California, including Mesa Verde, Bryce, Zion, the Grand
Canyon, and Fort Davis in Texas. Here my beautiful bride is enjoying the
ancient caves at Mesa Verde National Park in Mew Mexico.
How would you like to stand in four states
at the same time -- actually five if you count the state of "confusion."
Here we are at the Petrified Forest in
Arizona, still in love after 28 years. (We met, by the way, in the
cafeteria line in college. I had just received a box of chocolate-covered
Macadamia nuts from Hawaii and offered one to this nice young lady behind
me in line. Needless to say, I've been nuts about her ever since.)
We always like to visit Bryce Canyon National Park.
The scenery there is absolutely spectacular, wouldn't you agree?
I just want
to say to everyone reading these lines that I am married to the most
wonderful woman in the world. She has brought so much beauty and love into my
life and has been my steady companion on bright and cloudy days. Thanks,
honey, for such wonderful memories of our vacation last year. Te iubescu.
Monday, May 2
PM I am so glad that
surgery was a success, and I am praying for a compete and speedy
recovery. Hang in there, young man!
PM Just received this
response to our link to Mrs. Bush's "humorous" comments about her husband.
comments made by the First Lady literally make me want to cry. Will we
ever see the return of true statesmen accompanied by first ladies who
honor their husbands?
There is no excuse for any wife making jokes about her husband like that.
It doesn't matter what the occasion. Her remarks sadden and anger me.
PM FARM UPDATE: The horse
barn posts have been set (16 of them) with heavy cedars we cut and
trimmed. Next step: put up the pine rafters and framing.
AM The First Lady
From the mailbag:
I am becoming a more regular
visitor to DBO with the articles you are putting up about the church and I
love the Unleashing the Church section. I want you to know that I am
almost 100% down the line with you on these church principles.
New Directions in New Testament Textual
Criticism website has just been retooled. You can test your skills at
resolving textual variants by examining these
twelve textual trouble spots.
AM The latest addition to
our home page is called Every
Member a Missionary.
Only 28 days to go until our departure for
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