The Good Christian Music Blog


Genre: Folk, Bluegrass, Worship

Judah & The Lion are a folk worship band from Nashville, Tennessee and are made up of 7 individuals. With a sound comparable to Mumford & Sons, their music is catchy, and made up of good strong God-Centered lyrics. This is worship music but not as you usually hear it; and it sounds great! This song is taken from their debut release First Fruits EP released this year back in June. I love this song and this EP and can’t wait to hear more of Judah & The Lion.
All rights belong to Judah & The Lion.

Add some Judah & The Lion to your music diet and buy First Fruits off iTunes:
United Kingdom:
http://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/first-fruits-ep/id535347677
United States of America:
http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/first-fruits-ep/id535347677

For more information about Judah & The Lion check out: http://www.facebook.com/judahandthelion
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The Good Christian Music Blog


Genre: Folk, Acoustic, Christmas, Carol, Indie, Pop

Texas band Folk Angel team up with Jeff Johnson & Jourdan Johnson for this folk version of the Christmas Hymn, O Holy Night, taken from their album Comfort & Joy – Christmas Songs, Vol 3. Since 2009, Folk Angel have released a Christmas EP/Album each year, and this year shall be the same, there isn’t a release date yet but according to their Facebook and Twitter it’s nearly ready. For now though enjoy this brilliant rendition of O Holy Night, and be excited for more Christmas songs as we work our way slowly towards the 25th!

Buy Comfort & Joy – Christmas Songs, Vol 3. from iTunes:
United Kingdom:
https://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/comfort-joy-christmas-songs/id480592151
United States of America:
https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/comfort-joy-christmas-songs/id480592151

For more information on Folk Angel visit:
http://www.folkangel.com/
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DECISION MAKING: AN ETHICAL APPROACH

Before coming to Johnson University, I was under the ethical perspective of deontological ethics.  I am not suggesting that I became legalistic, but that I was always set in place by the rules due primarily to Mountain Mission School being rule-driven in its ethical approach.  Rules were the moral limits that informed my decision-making process.  For the most part, this is how I thought and reasoned about ethical decisions.  Having attended Johnson for four years, I would say that I have learned and grown in ways I never thought I could or would while at Johnson.  I have discovered that ethical decision making manifests itself in a myriad of ways and that it is not necessarily just one way that is supreme over all the others.     In light of the interdisciplinary presentations, the best approach to making ethical decisions is to conflate all three ethical perspectives into an integrated method that utilizes the best of all three perspectives thus optimizing the three perspectives into a holistic approach.  The remainder of this essay will discuss this conflation of ethical perspectives by utilizing Robin Lovin’s “Christian Ethics: An Essential Guide” and the “Interdisciplinary Presentations: Perspectives on Ethics”, and how I use all three to inform my worldview and ethical decision making process by answering a question presented to me in a fake scenario wherein my wife has asked me: “Would you ever cheat on me?”

 

Loving writes that a teleological ethics speaks of the goals and goods of our actions.  One of my main goals in life is to cultivate a loving, wholesome, healthy marriage wherein we carve out of this chaos of our pasts and of this world a tiny part of the Kingdom of God made manifest through the family system.  Lovin goes onto to write that, “Our goals give direction to our choices primarily by identifying the personal qualities and skills that we need to develop in order to achieve our goals.” Being faithful to my marital covenant serves as a prerequisite to my goal of cultivating a healthy marriage.  Faithfulness, in my humble opinion, is a personal quality in the context of the relationship.  To answer the theoretical question posed by my wife in this scenario from a teleological ethics perspective, I would state that cheating on her is against the goals I have set for myself and for our marriage, so no, I would not cheat.  Infidelity would contradict and destroy  my goals of being a loving, faithful husband seeking to cultivate a loving, healthy marriage. In this case, my goal informs my actions, my personal qualities, and the skills needed to achieve said goal.

 

Lovin writes that, “Philosophers speak of a system of ethics that is based on rules as a deontology or as a deontological ethics. The term is derived from a Greek root deon, which concerns that which is necessary or required.”  In summation, deontological ethics are about what rules are established particular within a covenant community.  The Ten Commandments can be seen as a deontological list of rules.  “Deontological ethics evaluates ethics,” writes Lovin, “by asking whether this action was the right thing to do according to a rule not by assessing what happens as the result of the action.”  Dr. Bridges’ presentation on New Testament ethics encouraged us to ask this question to aid us in making ethical decisions: “Does Scripture contain a flat, plain, obviously universal command on this issue? If so, obey it.”  My response stated from a teleological approach would be that I would not cheat because it is a command in Scriptures to love my wife and to be faithful to her and the covenant.  Dr. Owens spoke to us about how Old Testaments ethics focus on bringing God into life.  I would not be bringing God into my life and my marriage by committing adultery, which is a command He gives in the Ten Commandments, which is also repeated in the New Covenant.

 

“Virtues are the admirable qualities of persons that emerge from an examination of their narratives and that shape their moral lives.  A system of thinking about ethics that centers on virtues is sometimes called an areteology, or an areteological ethics,” writes Lovin.  This term arête is a Greek word meaning virtue.  Virtue is a behavioral pattern learned through consistent practice and eventually becomes a part of how that person conducts his or her self (Aristotle).  Dr. James R. Thobaben of Asbury Theological Seminary says, “Virtue reasoning is based on the idea that the end conditions the means…If I want to have the attitude of Christ Jesus I cannot betray people who have trust in me.”  I believe that the end is Christ when it comes to virtue reasoning.  Our virtue should be Christ Himself.  We should seek to be so deified (the process of going through theosis) that we become little Christs.  Dr. Thobaben says, “Our primary means of reasoning should be virtue reasoning.  We need to look at who  we want to be in Christ and act accordingly” (Italics mine).  I believe that the virtues stem from God’s holiness, from His essence and energies.  And the primary example of His Holiness is His Son Jesus Christ, who came and lived a virtuous life among us providing us with an example, but also giving us the means to become like Him, to “put on the divine nature” as St. Peter writes.  My answer to my wife’s question under an areteological approach would be that of Dr. Thobaben’s response and that is that I would not cheat on her because it would violate who I am and who I want to be in Christ, so I must act accordingly.

 

In conclusion,the best approach to making ethical decisions is to conflate all three ethical perspectives into an integrated method that utilizes the best of all three perspectives thus optimizing the three perspectives into a holistic approach.  I have shown how it is possible, and beneficial,  to conflate all three ethical perspectives into an answer to a theoretical question posed to me by my wife.  I would not cheat on her due to my goals for my marriage and family, because of the rules and commands of God laid out in Scripture and Holy Tradition, and because it would violate who I am and who I want to be in Christ.  I have learned that utilizing all three perspectives gives a more balanced and thought out answer to our moral decision making and ethical dilemmas and optimizes the quality of our lives.

A Possible Compromise on the Gay Marriage Controversy (A Libertarian View)

This article IS NOT written by me, and I am not taking credit. This article is written by Tony Campolo, and it presents what the Libertarian view is on the “Gay Marriage” debate in our society.

 

I stand by what this article says. The Church is on the losing side of culture with this issue, and the way I see it we need to put our attention elsewhere. The Church isn’t a conduit of the State and vice versa. This view is that government should get out of the marriage business and that the Church should get out of the wedding/legal contract business. We Christians would do well to spend our energies elsewhere.

 

I agree with the sociologists that Tony mentions that this is the way society is moving. I hold to the Libertarian view on this issue:

 

 

A Possible Compromise on the Gay Marriage Controversy

by TONY CAMPOLO

 

President Bush once said that marriage is a sacred institution and should be reserved for the union of one man and one woman. If this is the case — and most Americans would agree with him on this — then I have to ask: Why is the government at all involved in marrying people? If marriage really is a sacred institution, then why is the government controlling it, especially in a nation that affirms separation of church and state?

 

Personally, as a Baptist minister, I always feel a bit uneasy at the end of the weddings that I perform when I have to say, “And now, by the authority given unto me by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, I pronounce you husband and wife.” Having performed a variety of religious exercises, such as reading scripture, saying prayers, giving a biblically-based homily and pronouncing blessings on the marriage, why am I required to suddenly shift to being an agent of the state?

 

Doesn’t it seem inconsistent that during such a highly religious ceremony, I should have to turn the church into a place where government business is conducted? Isn’t it a conflict for me to unify my pastoral role with that of an agent of the state?

 

Allow me to suggest a way out of this apparent conflict and the difficult questions being raised these days about whether our country should approve of homosexual marriages. I propose that the government should get out of the business of marrying people and, instead, only give legal status to civil unions. The government should do this for both gay couples and straight couples, and leave marriage in the hands of the church and other religious entities. That’s the way it works in Holland. If a couple wants to be united in the eyes of the law, whether gay or straight, the couple goes down to the city hall and legally registers, securing all the rights and privileges a couple has under Dutch law. Then, if the couple wants the relationship blessed — to be married — they goes to a church, synagogue or other house of worship. Marriage should be viewed as an institution ordained by God and should be out of the control of the state.

 

Of course, homosexual couples could go to churches that welcome and affirm gay marriages and get their unions blessed there. Isn’t that the way it should be in a nation that guarantees people the right to promote religion according to their personal convictions? If such a proposal became normative, those like myself who hold to traditional beliefs about marriage would go to traditional churches where conservative beliefs about marriage are upheld, and we would have our marriages blessed there. And secularists who are unlikely to do anything that smacks of religion would probably just throw a party to celebrate a new union. Marriage would be preserved as a religious institution for all of us who want to view it as such, and nobody’s personal convictions about this highly charged issue would have to be compromised.

 

It is not likely that this will happen in the near future, but many sociologists tell us that America is eventually headed toward making this the way we do marriage.

 

Doug Wead, arguably the best man that Ron Paul’s campaign had, comes out immediately for Rand in 2016.

“The change that will be debated in the next presidential election will not be about tax percentages, or troop withdrawal timetables, or welfare for Big Bird, or who should be the next chairman of the Federal Reserve. The change that will be debated will be about fundamentals, about monetary policy, about the philosophical underpinnings of our foreign policy, about the relevancy of the American constitution and where we are headed as a people.

It will not be the red team against the blue team, espousing the same things in different degrees, rather it will be about real differences.”

Doug Wead The Blog

For Republicans, there is a silver lining to the re-election of Barack Obama.  The door is now open for real change in 2016.  The recently adopted Romney Rules at the RNC, which would have locked out any true democratic participation and guaranteed eight more years of GOP establishment, top-down, Brahman-style, domination, are now moot.  The gate is open.

The change that will be debated in the next presidential election will not be about tax percentages, or troop withdrawal timetables, or welfare for Big Bird, or who should be the next chairman of the Federal Reserve.  The change that will be debated will be about fundamentals, about monetary policy, about the philosophical underpinnings of our foreign policy, about the relevancy of the American Constitution and where we are headed as a people.

It will not be the red team against the blue team, espousing the same things in different degrees, rather…

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The Orthodox Life

Imagine that you are a preacher.  God himself has called you to be a preacher, and He has put many people under your care.  It is your job to teach them the “three Gs” . . . 1) Who is God?  2) What has God done?  3) What does God require?    You only have one week to prepare a top-notch sermon, worthy for presentation to God’s people.  So, you get to work, and you prepare your sermon diligently.

There is only one catch . . . you are not allowed to use a Bible!  You are not even allowed to see any books which quote anything from the Bible.  And you do not have any Bible verses memorized.

Now what are you going to do?  How are you going to preach to people about God, if you cannot even use the Bible?  Is such a thing even possible?

Indeed, the…

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