John Stott at Urbana ’67

I attended the great triennial missions convention sponsored by Inter Varsity Christian Fellowship as a freshman in 1967. John Stott was the expositor that particular years. He was stunningly biblical, insightful, careful and yet expressing a fire that was at a hot burn.

Here is a link to the transcripts of those messages. Over the years Stott has been a first performer in matters of preaching, faithfulness to the fullness of God’s Word and sophisticated cultural engagement. On a couple of issues I continue to wonder “where in the world did he get that?” but on the whole Stott expresses the best of evangelicalism in the deepest part of its stream.

If I had the gifts and could choose a preacher whom to model, it would be Stott. I have come to terms long ago with my own style and gifts, but in my mind the blend that Stott represents is a “best practices” kind of model.

Francis Schaeffer’s Lectures available online

When I was a freshman in college, Schaeffer was a major help, particularly his book Escape From Reason. He enabled me to move beyond a pietistic fundamentalism to a more thoughtful world and life view. Schaeffer and InterVarsity Press were constant companions. Schaeffer himself has escaped from fundamentalism but was, in my view, recaptured by it in his later ministry as cultural and political lines crossed.

Justin Taylor has linked Schaeffer lectures online from the Wheaton archives.

A Congressman refusing a benefit? It can happen!!

A newly-elected GOP Rep. announced that he is refusing the congressional health insurance plan in a show of solidarity with the American people.

Rep-elect Joe Walsh (R-IL) told the New York Times that he will stick to his Tea Party roots and decline the government health care provided to members of congress.

“I don’t think congressmen should get pensions or cushy health care plans,” he said. But it‘s a decision that’s not being welcomed by everyone in his family. Walsh’s wife has a pre-existing medical condition, and she’ll now be charged with the difficult task of finding a plan on the open market.

Walsh joins two other Republicans in declining the government’s health plan. So far, incoming Reps. Bobby Schilling (IL) and Mike Kelly (PA) have made similar decisions.