Archive | April, 2009

Driscoll and Piper on Love and God’s Commands

I follow Mark Driscoll on Twitter and just watched a little 4:27 video that he tweeted about: “Song of Solomon Q&A 3.” I’ve embedded it below.

It contains some solid practical advice for troubled marriages. On the whole, it’s good stuff.

Two items caught my attention—particularly because of how they seem to be at odds with things John Piper teaches:

  1. “If [love is] commanded, that means it’s not a feeling.”
  2. “God couldn’t command you to do something that was impossible for you to do.”

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The Passive Voice Should Be Avoided, Right?

The Elements of StyleLike most of you who have taken classes with teachers who provided grammatical and stylistic critiques of your papers, I was told to avoid the passive voice as much as possible. Yet I was never really completely convinced of the notion. The Greek New Testament is full of passives, I rebutted, and a grammatical active may be a semantic passive (yet these, strangely, never got marked as improper). I just never felt like the case against passives was convincing. It was more of an unquestionable rule of proper writing style.

But not everyone is afraid to question this prevailing notion. I just read a scathing (understatement!) review of Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style that addresses the issue of passives, among other things. It was written by Geoffrey K. Pullum, who is the head of linguistics and English language at the University of Edinburgh.

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OpenLibrary.org: “Every Book Ever Published”

I knew that would get your attention.

Internet Archive, a site I use regularly for researching public domain books, just announced their newest project: OpenLibrary.org. Here’s the site’s description:

One web page for every book ever published. It’s a lofty, but achievable, goal.

To build it, we need hundreds of millions of book records, a brand new database infrastructure for handling huge amounts of dynamic information, a wiki interface, multi-language support, and people who are willing to contribute their time, effort, and book data.

To date, we have gathered about 30 million records (20 million are available through the site now), and more are on the way. We have built the database infrastructure and the wiki interface, and you can search millions of book records, narrow results by facet, and search across the full text of 1 million scanned books.

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Gaffin on Union with Christ

WTSBooks points out via Twitter a 5-part series (plus 2 Q&A sessions) by Richard B. Gaffin Jr. on “The Mystery of Union with Christ.” Gaffin delivered these messages at Matthews Orthodox Presbyterian in March of 2005. I’ve downloaded them and listened to part of the first one. It looks to be a very good series. They are available as free downloads courtesy of SermonAudio.com.

  1. The Mystery of Union with Christ—Part 1
  2. The Mystery of Union with Christ—Part 2
  3. The Mystery of Union with Christ—Part 3
  4. The Mystery of Union with Christ—Part 4
  5. The Mystery of Union with Christ—Part 5
  6. The Mystery of Union with Christ—Q & A, Part 1
  7. The Mystery of Union with Christ—Q & A, Part 2

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