05.27.23 EChurch@Wartburg Jim Abrahamson(Who Greatly Influenced Dee’s Thinking): 1 Tim 1-18-20 Keeping the Faith

Never Forget link


A Morning Prayer: Syrian Clementine Liturgy link

O God, Who are the unsearchable abyss of peace, the ineffable sea of love, the fountain of blessings, and the bestower of affection,
Who sends peace to those that receive it; open to us this day the sea of Your love,
and water us with the plenteous streams from the riches of Your grace. Make us children of quietness, and heirs of peace.
Kindle in us the fire of Your love; sow in us Your fear; strengthen our weakness by Your power;
bind us closely to You and to each other in one firm bond of unity; for the sake of Jesus Christ.

A Pure Heart: The Clementine Liturgy link

O God Almighty, Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, Your only begotten Son,
give me a body unstained, a pure heart, a watchful mind, and an upright understanding,
and the presence of Your Holy Spirit, that I may obtain and ever hold fast to an unshaken faith in Your Truth,
through Jesus Christ, Your Son, our Lord; through whom be glory to You in the Holy Spirit, forever and ever.

A prayer of Basil of Caesarea: 329-379; link

Steer the ship of my life, good Lord, to your quiet harbour, where I can be safe from the storms of sin and conflict.
Show me the course I should take. Renew in me the gift of discernment,
so that I can always see the right direction in which I should go.
And give me the strength and the courage to choose the right course, even when the sea is rough and the waves are high,
knowing that through enduring hardship and danger in your name we shall find comfort and peace.

Jim Abrahamson

Jim’s teaching profoundly affected the way I view faith. He says things differently. Both he and I were a lot younger when I spent time listening to him.
He teaches with his own slides which helped me to understand. You will see these slides. This is presented in a classroom.
If you want to hear something different,proceed to around minute 30 and listen to his thoughts. He just started filming these so you may see him appear a few times.

05 05-21-2023 1 Tim 1-18-20 Keeping the Faith from Andy Smoak on Vimeo.

Benediction: Thomas Graham link

Now may the Lord lift up the light of His countenance upon you, and give you peace,
in your going out and in your coming in; in your sitting down and your rising up;
in your work and in your play; in your joy and in your sorrow,
in your laughter and in your tears; until that day comes wich is without dawn and without dark.”


05.27.23 EChurch@Wartburg Jim Abrahamson(Who Greatly Influenced Dee’s Thinking): 1 Tim 1-18-20 Keeping the Faith — 4 Comments

  1. 1 – Is Jim Abrahamson the same person as Andy Smoak?

    2 – I shan’t have broadband or phone soon, because the pricing plans are going fixed term and random prices, rather like those “reformed” covenants.

  2. Thank you, Dee.

    I’m taking this in small bites.

    I’ll note in regard to the cultural trends that are criticized @ 16:11, that when institutions cease to perform well their missions toward their constituencies, it’s very natural for the constituents to loosen their attachment to, and ultimately repudiate, those institutions.

    This is a very natural trend in human affairs. There’s an “iron law of institutions”, that the officers of institutions tend to be more concerned to use their office to increase their own power rather than to promote the fulfillment of the institutional mission. This is happening in institutions of all kinds in US and probably in much of the rest of the world. It isn’t hard to see this in present-day Evangelicalism, and I think one can discern it in the long history of the Western tradition churches, too (I know too little of the Eastern churches to hold any opinion regarding them). The constituents suffer long, but eventually lose patience with the dysfunction.

    I think that the Presbyterian approach to polity is wise in the sense of building in checks and balances, though as one of your posts the past week illustrated, this does not prevent the formation of groups of like-minded leaders who protect each other, at the expense of the flock.

    “De-institutionalization” might not be a bad thing if it takes the form of repudiation of corrupt institutions. One can hope that less corrupt — and, ideally, less corruptible — forms of social organization arise in their place. Perhaps that will happen within Christianity; I hope so. The Jesus Story is IMO best mediated to the world by communities of people who love one another as Jesus loved his people.

  3. Samuel Conner: wise in the sense of building in checks and balances, though … this does not prevent the formation of groups of like-minded leaders who protect each other, at the expense of the flock

    The thought occurs that, along the lines of the trope “fool-proof” that is used to describe systems that are resilient to perturbations caused by human stupidity, perhaps we need a new trope — I suggest the term “sociopath-proof” — to describe systems that by design successfully minimize the damage that can be done within them by bad-hearted people.

    My view of the matter is that the most effective way to do this is to limit the power that institutions grant to the people who hold important positions within the institutions. This is, effectively, de-institutionalization, which I think JA deplores. But I don’t see an alternative — power will attract people who want to use that power for self-interested purposes, and bad-hearted people will tend to be promoted into power in preference to good-hearted people because the bad actors are more willing than the good-actors to play “dirty” to attain promotion. If you want to limit the harm that bad-hearted institutional office-holders can do, you may have to limit the power of their offices.

    Perhaps intensive psychological screening, with anti-social personality types debarred from holding any office with power over other people, would be an effective alternative. Good luck getting that through the churches, though, and it might even be illegal — a form of discrimination.

  4. Derelicting personal potential by expecting unenlightened institutions to police spiritual institutions isn’t the Gospel of Christ. When we are codependency (possessiveness) alert, we will know what’s unhealthy and to detach from, and why. In this life we also even to detach from things that were healthy in themselves.

    (Apologies I had trouble hearing the audio)