Category Archives: Uncategorized

Calvin on Baptism’s Efficacy to Remit Sins and Regenerate the Baptized

John Calvin says in his Antidote to the Council of Trent 1.5,

We assert that the whole guilt of sin is taken away in baptism, so that the remains of sin still existing are not imputed. That this may be more clear, let my readers call to mind that there is a twofold grace in baptism, for therein both remission of sins and regeneration are offered to us. We teach that full remission is made, but that regeneration is only begun and goes on making progress during the whole of life.

Anglican ‘Calvinists’: ‘Sorry, that’s Anglo-catholicism.’

Why I Stick to the Sermon Manuscript

When I go off script for a sermon, I say things in ways that only I understand, and the Bible says I should not speak in tongues without an interpreter!

Lordship in Psalm 8

Read Psalm 8 carefully, considering how God has ordained strength out of the mouth of babes and sucklings, God who has been mindful of frail man and visited the son of man and crowned him with glory and honour. And then look at this image and think about the psalm again:

The Theotokos “of the Sign” Icon | A Reader's Guide to Orthodox Icons

Peter Lombard on the Self-Offering of Christ

The Birth of Scholasticism from a Series of Fortunate Mistakes | Church  Life Journal | University of Notre Dame

To start off Advent a fortnight early like an old Hispanic of the Mozarabic Rite, I give you Peter Lombard, 12c. mediaeval schoolman and Bishop of Paris, the Master of the Sentences (as Aquinas calls him), on the self-offering of Christ:

Christ is the priest, as he is also the victim and the price of our reconciliation. He offered himself on the altar of the cross not to the devil, but to the triune God, and he did so for all with regard to the sufficiency of the price, but only for the elect with regard to its efficacy, because he brought about salvation only for the predestined.

This teaching, under the formula ‘sufficient for all, efficient for the elect’, became the standard teaching of the Occidental churches, and was maintained by English Reformed divine John Davenant at the Synod of Dort. Today, we can remember that we are able to offer salvation to all, upon condition of faith, because Jesus himself did so in offering himself to God for all, and saw to it that his elect would actually believe and be saved. And what God has offered, we are permitted to offer: God died for you, and therefore you can be saved.

Unusual Camera Angle in Beauty and the Beast

In Beauty and the Beast, camera angles from the height of Gaston’s boots:

What did they mean by this?

2021 West Coast Chinese Christian Conference (WCCCC)

This year’s West Coast Chinese Christian Conference (WCCCC) is happening not just online but also on site!

Calvin: The Israelite Sabbath an Abrogated Symbol of Sanctification

Calvin on Genesis 2:

Afterwards, in the Law, a new precept concerning the Sabbath was given, which should be peculiar to the Jews, and but for a season; because it was a legal ceremony shadowing forth a spiritual rest, the truth of which was manifested in Christ. Therefore the Lord the more frequently testifies that he had given, in the Sabbath, a symbol of sanctification to his ancient people. Therefore when we hear that the Sabbath was abrogated by the coming of Christ, we must distinguish between what belongs to the perpetual government of human life, and what properly belongs to ancient figures, the use of which was abolished when the truth was fulfilled.

Calvin was not a Sabbatarian like many of the puritans who hated Christmas.

Let Us Remember William Tyndale

‘Lord, open the King of England’s eyes,’ William Tyndale said before he was strangled by the hangman and burnt at the stake. God answered his prayer, and his work to translate the Bible and reform the Church of England from the tyranny of the Bishop of Rome bore fruit in the English Reformation that followed. May the Lord honour his prayers and in Christ save the people of England from their sins.

Ramiro Ledesma Ramos: National Bolshevik (Part 1)

ramiro-ledesma-ramos-1905-1936

By Juan Antonio Llopart Senent, translated by Fernando Garrayo, originally posted elsewhere in 2012.

Talking nowadays about the National-Syndicalism and about its founder, Ramiro Ledesma Ramos, is at least difficult. It is basically because 37 years after Franco’s death (he died 20th November 1975), the official historians, the media and the most rancorous peoples – whether of the right or the left wings –, without historical rigour, still mistakenly linking, falsely and sometimes intentionally, National-Syndicalism (NS henceforward) with the regime of Franco.

Since 19th April 1937, with the approval of the Decree of Unification with what Franco and Serrano Suñer created that hybrid called FET and of the JONS, resounded at the life of the Spaniards that slogan “For God, Spain and its National-Syndicalist Revolution”, and though indeed, there was a lot of “For God” and a lot of “ITS” Spain, there was not nothing of National-Syndicalist Revolution. The Spanish people lived for almost 40 years wrapped in the National-Syndicalist trappings, but without its essence, the National-Syndicalist spirit and ideology, everything what was presented as such, it was distorted by the elements of the rising regime: technocrats of the Opus Dei, monarchists and reactionary right-wingers, covered all by the Catholic Church and the Army.

Meanwhile, the authentic National-syndicalists were condemned to silence. Manuel Hedilla, 2nd National Chief of FE of the JONS, Ruiz Castillejos, de los Santos, Chamarro, were condemned to death. Félix Gómez and Ángel Alcázar de Velasco, to penal servitude for life. Others, to some years of imprisonment… their crime: to go against the Decree of Unification and the falsification of the NS.

Some National-Syndicalists thought that by going inside the regime of the general Franco they could achieve influence on it. Others, the most decided in the action and in the compromise, opted for the clandestine fight, and the most, accepted the Unification. This attitude was comprehensible in a organisation that was exaggeratedly incremented by elements coming from right-wing and reactionary parties, which pretended to use the NS as political springboard, as well as to turn it in to the truncheon guard of the bourgeoisie´s interests.

It is doubtless that if Ramiro Ledesma had been comprehended when he accussed FE of the JONS of acquiescent with the right wing, if José Antonio Primo de Rivera (founder of Falange, FE) had accepted the criticisms of Ramiro and had not took so long to comprehend them, that the fate of the NS would have been something else. Both died assassinated by the Government of the People’s Front, but both were murdered day after day by the regime of Franco and after this, by all those who, with their blue shirts, their beltings and their hair fixed, made of flashiness, bullying and rightism their found of action, attitude that nothing must envy of what 40 years ago had in Salamanca guys as Dávila, Aznar or Garcerán.

Ramiro Ledesma Ramos, a National-Bolshevik?

If, as I have pointed at former occasions, the National-bolshevism (hereafter NB) is the harmonic union between the most radical conceptions of the national and the social, evidently we can assert that Ramiro Ledesma was a National-Bolshevik. “There are here two words: one, the national idea, the Homeland as historical enterprise and as guarantee of historical existence of all the Spaniards; the other, the social idea, the socialist economy, as guarantee of the bread and economic welfare of all the people” says roundly Ramiro.

Since the beginnings, Ramiro and his Juntas de Ofensiva Nacional Sindicalista (JONS), aspired to attract all the workers to the national cause, as the jonsists wanted “acquire a broad proletarian base”. This inquietude was a faithful reflex of their social extraction: proletarians, peasants and radical cutting intellectuals, vehemently against the bourgeois order. One of the constant fears of Ramiro, one of his most painful worries was that jonsism were confused “with a frivolous and futile task of young gentlemen”.

With the JONS was born in Spain, in words of Ramiro, “a political movement, of national core deep and great social perspectives, rather, socialist ones”. Ramiro has very clear the role of the rights, and he does not hesitate in accuse them as one of the greatest evils that pinch their people, while he does not hesitate either in denouncing the operetta patriotism, “we well know a long time ago what to expect about the rightist patriotism, specially those of the forces more directly clerical and linked to the sacristies. Every day is more evident for us the suspicious that the national weakness of Spain is due, in great part, to “the inoperative patriotism, false and without warm” that till now has ruled, incubated and oriented the right wing”.

In Ramiro, the fate of the community always goes linked to a just distribution of the riches: “The submission of the riches to the national advisabilities, that is to say, to the pushfulness of Spain and the prosperity of the people”. Always there were in the jonsists social and economic consigns. “With we, then the workers; to nationalise the parasitic banking, to nationalise the transports, to cut off the action of the speculating piracy and to exterminate to the great profiteers of products”. The jonsist NS had very clear what had to be the basic aspirations of the community: “The JONS ask and want the nationalisation of the transports, as notorious public service, the control of the financial speculations of the high banking, democratic guarantee of the people´s economy; the regulation of the interest or income produced by the money used in exploitations of national utility; the democratisation of the credit, the benefit of the unions, communal groups and small business; abolition of the forced unemployment, making of the work a right of all the Spaniards, as guarantee against starvation and misery, equality before the State of all the elements that intervene in the production (capital, workers and technicians), and rigorous justice in the responsible for disciplining the national economy organisms; abolition of the abusive privileges and instauration of a hierarchy of the State that reach and be nourished by all the Spanish classes”. These were then the consigns of the JONS. Does anyone doubt of its rotundity and its people´s and revolutionary spirit?

Ramiro, as other National-Bolshevik thinkers of that time, does not hesitate in criticise the fascism when this turns to the right. He says about it: “ …has crushed, in effect, the political institutions of the bourgeoisie and it has given to the proletarians a new moral and a political optimism… but Has it crushed or weaken the great fortresses of the financial capital, the high industrial bourgeoisie and the landowners in benefit the general economy of all the people? And, furthermore, is it actually making possible the elimination of the capitalist system and basing increasingly the regime at the economic interests of the great masses? Without any doubt, with such statements, it is comprehensible and logical that Ramiro were silenced and marginalised by the regime of Franco, inasmuch as it is known by everyone, this was supported to settle on the power, accurately on these great fortresses of the financial capita to which Ramiro refers.

For Ramiro and his JONS, the fascisms of operetta were totally condemnable, “groups without deep dimension, artificial, that import the fascist phenomenon as someone imports any fashion gender”. He shows hard, very hard with these fascist movements of importation when he states that. “Mosley is there out, with his shirts, his fascist party and his mussolinian dreams; as here Primo de Rivera, with a similar team… they have a leader, an aristocrat Duce, millionaire, who spends his money organising the party. Just like that, Mosley, the Englishman, who is Sir, multimillionaire and flamboyant. So is Primo de Rivera, the Spaniard, millionaire and superfine. So is Starhemberg, who is prince and everything else. All of them are soft, doughy, cottony, with good manners, that pretend to implant a Corporate State… They are characterised also for their notorious tendency to disown all people´s angish then they are incubated in privileged social classes and they are linked to all the reactionary forms of the society”.

Ramiro also acquires a revolutionary compromise with the Spanish country. Its words are dialectic bullets against the rural capitalism: “Spanish countrymen: the land is the nation. The peasant who cultivates the land has got the right to its usufruct. The regime of the agrarian property hitherto has been a consented theft and carried out by the Monarchy and its feudal hordes. Countrymen: 147 great landowners have got in their hands more than a million hectares of land. All the land is yours. Demand its nationalization”

These affirmations will affront the sanctimonius minds of the right-wing. A lot of these proposals are totally left by the traditional parties of the left-wing, and even by the most radical leftists.

“Up with the new world! Up with the Spain that we will do!”. These were the jonsist consigns and shouts. They were, without any doubt, new proclamations, shouts of hope, but over all, shouts of revolution. Yes, of revolution, because they were fed-up men of a rotten world, plenty of injustices, of exploited men and exploiters. There was an imperative, popular and revolutionary: to subvert the bourgeois order. And in this task, the JONS fought. Ramiro managed print that spirit between his comrades, who understood the need to distance from the bourgeois vulgarity, to shun from all the old and from all the deciduous.

So the first task of the NS “was to link those two separate ingredients: the national and the social, the Homeland an the Work. That nobody think that the adoption of the term both charming and polemic, of the national-proletarian revolution, were in the founders work of reflexive and cautious tactic, but immediate consequence from living in a deep and endearing manner the history of our time”. These words from Pedro Laín Entralgo newly approximate us to the jonsist aspiration of the social and the national.

The National-Bolsheviks preferred an alliance or rapprochement with the Soviet Russia to an alliance with the occidental democracies, as the Great Britain, fact that differentiate them clearly from the Hitler´s approachs… And in this context, newly we appeal to Pedro Laín Entralgo when he affirms: “As Ramiro Ledesma remarks with dowser sight, the Soviet communism is becoming more and more in a national-communism. Stalin is doing the turn from the world proletarian revolution of Lenin to a national Russian revolution”. These words can seem exaggerated, but Ramiro in some times does similar affirmations: “Russia, with its national-communist regime, with war moral, overarmed, in full experiment of gigantic social subversions, is not yet, of course, the revolutionary country that conspires everyday for the world revolution”. Or when he affirms: “It is the rotund efficacy of the Soviet state, that offers to the Russian people, in a coactive and questionless manner, the possibility of taking august national discipline. Nowadays Stalin guarantee his economic plan brandishing the nationalist Russian fury”.

It is clear that Ramiro was not at all communist, and he himself explain us why: “Against the communism, with its charge of reasons and efficacies, we put on a national idea, that it do not accepts, and that represents for us the beginning of every human enterprise of jaunty range. This national idea contains a culture and some historical values that we recognize as our highest patrimony”.

Go on to part 2, translated by L. Y. Tsang.

The West Coast Chinese Christian Conference (WCCCC) Website

The website for the West Coast Chinese Christian Conference is wcccc.us, not wcccc dot org. Of the latter, the WCCCC registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization (whose information you can confirm) no longer has effective control, and therefore WCCCC updates after the 2018 conference have been at the newer WCCCC website, not at wcccc.org. So do please go to wcccc.us for information on the conference and the organization’s work.

Some Processions for Advent

How does this look?

Advent I

Vigil Evensong

At Evening Prayer, after the Collect of Advent I and the two collects, a procession to the pulpit singing ‘Behold the Bridegroom Cometh’.

V. The voice of one crying in the wilderness.
R. Make straight the way of the Lord.

Let us pray.

ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who didst will to restore all things in thy well-beloved Son, the King of kings and Lord of lords: Mercifully grant that all the kindreds of the earth, set free from the captivity of sin, may be brought under his most gracious dominion; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.

In the return, ‘Hark the Glad Sound! the Saviour Comes’.

V. The Spirit of the Lord is upon me.
R. Because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor.

Let us pray.

O GOD, who hast made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on the face of the whole earth, and didst send thy blessed Son to preach peace to them that are far off and to them that are nigh: Grant that all men everywhere may seek after thee and find thee. Bring the nations into thy fold, pour out thy Spirit upon all flesh, and hasten thy kingdom; through the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Morning Service

At Morning Prayer, after the Collect of Advent I and the other two collects: ‘Lo, He Comes with Clouds Descending’ or ‘Hark! a Herald Voice is Calling’.

Litany.

V. The voice of one crying in the wilderness.
R. Make straight the way of the Lord.

Let us pray.

ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who didst will to restore all things in thy well-beloved Son, the King of kings and Lord of lords: Mercifully grant that all the kindreds of the earth, set free from the captivity of sin, may be brought under his most gracious dominion; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.
Chrysostom and the Grace.

Advent II, III

Vigil Evensong

At Evening Prayer, after the Collect of the Day and the two collects, a procession to the pulpit singing ‘Behold the Bridegroom Cometh’.

V. The voice of one crying in the wilderness.
R. Make straight the way of the Lord.

Let us pray.

ALMIGHTY God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

In the return, ‘Hark the Glad Sound! the Saviour Comes’.

V. The Spirit of the Lord is upon me.
R. Because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor.

Let us pray.

ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who didst will to restore all things in thy well-beloved Son, the King of kings and Lord of lords: Mercifully grant that all the kindreds of the earth, set free from the captivity of sin, may be brought under his most gracious dominion; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.

Morning Service

At Morning Prayer, after the Collect of the Day and the other two collects: ‘Lo, He Comes with Clouds Descending’ or ‘Hark! a Herald Voice is Calling’.

Litany.

V. The voice of one crying in the wilderness.
R. Make straight the way of the Lord.

Let us pray.

ALMIGHTY God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life, in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious Majesty, to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, now and ever. Amen.
Chrysostom and the Grace.

Advent IV, and all seven days before Christmas

Vigil Evensong

At Evening Prayer, after the Collect of the Day and the two collects, a procession to the pulpit singing ‘O Come, O Come, Emmanuel’.

V. The voice of one crying in the wilderness.
R. Make straight the way of the Lord.

Let us pray.

ALMIGHTY God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious majesty to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, one God, now and for ever. Amen.

In the return, ‘Hark the Glad Sound! the Saviour Comes’.

V. The Spirit of the Lord is upon me.
R. Because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor.

Let us pray.

ALMIGHTY and everlasting God, who didst will to restore all things in thy well-beloved Son, the King of kings and Lord of lords: Mercifully grant that all the kindreds of the earth, set free from the captivity of sin, may be brought under his most gracious dominion; who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit ever, one God, world without end. Amen.

Morning Service

At Morning Prayer, after the Collect of the Day and the other two collects: ‘Lo, He Comes with Clouds Descending’ or ‘Hark! a Herald Voice is Calling’.

Litany.

V. The voice of one crying in the wilderness.
R. Make straight the way of the Lord.

Let us pray.

ALMIGHTY God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness, and put upon us the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life, in which thy Son Jesus Christ came to visit us in great humility; that in the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious Majesty, to judge both the quick and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Ghost, now and ever. Amen.

Chrysostom and the Grace.

Why Call Mary the Mother of God?

‘Moreover we confess that the Son of God was born of the blessed Virgin and we do not hesitate to call Mary the Mother of God.’ So says Peter Martyr Vermigli in his Dialogue on the Two Natures in Christ (Thomas Jefferson University Press, 1995; reprinted by the Davenant Institute), Topic II: On the Property of the Natures in Christ, 2:59.

This is Reformed. Both the theology and the practice are 100% Protestant.

Maryja – Parafia Matki Bożej Częstochowskiej w Lubinie

Some Protestants may object that the point is fruitless and unnecessary to make, and that the title Mother of God is both needless and confusing. When would it be relevant and ædifying?

Suppose that we reflect on the Incarnation over several weeks. Suppose that we come to the thought that God the Son deigned to be born of a woman: as the hymn Te Deum says, ‘When thou tookest upon thee to deliver man, thou didst not abhor the Virgin’s womb.’ Then suppose that we look at the same event from the other end: God gave a woman, living under the curse placed upon Eve, the privilege of becoming the Mother of her own Creator. Viewed this way, Mary’s becoming the Mother of God is one part of Christ’s fulfilment of Psalm 8, where the Psalmist says,

What is man, that thou art mindful of him?
and the son of man, that thou visitest him?
For thou hast made him a little lower than the angels,
and hast crowned him with glory and honour.

Is this not what God the Son began to do in becoming the son of a woman, and what he completed in ascending to the right hand of God the Father to reign over heaven and earth as a man? Already in Mary’s becoming the Mother of He-Who-Is-God, Christ was beginning to crown mankind with a glory and honour that was until then unimaginable.

Perhaps that doesn’t do much for you, and you may feel unsure why it should.

But Luke 1.42–43, I think, encourages us to have the same response of the heart as Elizabeth had, mutatis mutandis. Jesus is so holy, and he has both received and conferred such privilege for believing mankind, that even the arrival of his holy vessel elicits from Elizabeth the exclamation, ‘Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb. And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?’ It is a godly and indeed prophetic response to the dignity with which Christ, by his incarnation in the womb of a woman, has crowned Mary and all mankind. May these contemplations, called to memory by Mary’s title ‘Mother of God’, magnify God’s holy Name and cause our spirits to rejoice in God our Saviour, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

This Amazing Lifehack Will Scare All the Leftoid Students

A big, beautiful Anglican gulag will frighten leftoid students more than the darkest Soviet gulag: mandatory attendance at daily Morning and Evening Prayer; Litany on Sundays, Wednesdays, and Fridays; the Commination on Ash Wednesday; orthodox Christian sermons and no phones; pictures of saints in the hallways; Tallis and no pop music; farmwork.

Insincere Race-baiting Advertising

This video, which I came across as an advert on YouTube, is so lame but takes itself so seriously:

In solemn tones, it speaks of stopping hatred against Asians in America. Colour me unconvinced.

Mistreatment and violence against Asians has gone on for decades, whether from White Americans or from Black Americans. Culturally, however, feeling bad for Asians is a conveniently recent phænomenon. I don’t trust it one bit.

Allow Me Some Racism Against the West About COVID-19

All these frivolous White people botching COVID-19 responses. You basically need four things:

  1. a short draconian lockdown,
  2. provision for everyone to eat and pay rent,
  3. test-and-trace, and
  4. closing of borders.

If you do not do all four, your plan will harm many people for nothing. It’s all or nothing. Instead, the West does cycles of lockdowns that have no salutary effect and destroy the œconomy. Their governments, and their politics more generally, are a joke.

Taiwan has been free of domestic COVID-19 cases for more than 200 days. They have concerts again, and schools are open. But when they did lockdowns, violators were fined 1 million new Taiwan dollars. Contacts were traced in a population almost the size of Texas on an island the size of New Jersey. Borders were closed. It worked. Taiwan may politically be a joke in other ways, but in this area it did well.

In contrast, the US government has only wrecked the lives of ordinary citizens. A ‘stimulus package’ of a measly $600 per citizen is also freighted with other special allocations on top of the ordinary budget:

  1. $4 billion for Navy weapons procurement;
  2. $2 billion for Air Force missile procurement;
  3. $2 billion for the Space Force;
  4. $1.3 billion for Ægypt;
  5. $700 million for the war in Sudan;
  6. $453 million for US forces occupying the Ukrainian border;
  7. $500 million in ‘relief’ for the Zionist state (about $50 per Israeli).

330 million cheques of $600 each amounts to about $200 billion, and the bill will cost about $900 billion in all. The money spent on weapons and foreign ‘aid’ is on top of the $740 billion already allocated for the 2021 Pentagon budget.

The political process is discredited. These United States are not a serious state.