Friday, September 28

Classical Education in the Times

The most recent issue of the New York Times Magazine features a remarkable profile of New St. Andrew's College and focuses on the burgeoning Classical Christian education movement.

Tuesday, September 18

Breakfast Lectures

David Dillard and I will be offering four Friday morning breakfast lectures on the history of Iraq starting this next week. We'll be covering a wide range of time and subjects:

Lecture 1: Ancient Iraq--From Eden to Ottomans (September 28). We'll survey the cradles of civilization, the tides of the great empires, the devastation of the Islamic conquest, and the denouement of the Ottoman Empire.

Lecture 2: British Iraq--Wars and Wishes (October 5). We will give an overview of the discovery of oil, the tumult of the World Wars, and the British occupation.

Lecture 3: Revolutionary Iraq--Coups and Chaos (October 19). We will provide some context for the struggle for national identity, power, and the rise of Saddam and the Baathists.

Lecture 4: Whose Iraq?--Desert Storms and Hopes (November 2). We will conclude with the story of the American occupation, the emergence of ethnic strife, and the search for lasting peace.

Thankfully, pre-registrations exceeded the capacity of our first venue so we have had to change locations--to a much larger facility. Even so, the new venue is already almost full as well. So, if you've been wanting to attend but weren't able to get in before, now's your chance. Pre-register ASAP by visiting the Servant Group International website. MP3 CDs of these lectures may also be pre-ordered on the site--in addition to a host of other helpful resources.

Monday, September 17

Thursday, September 13

Tuesday, September 11


Ever been rejected? Well, welcome to a very esteemed club. According to a remarkable story in the New York Times, Anne Frank, Pearl Buck, George Orwell, Jorge Luis Borges, Isaac Bashevis Singer, A. J. P. Taylor, Barbara Tuchman, Vladimir Nabokov, and James Baldwin were all rejected by the zealously discriminating editors at Knopf before going on to become mega-bestselling authors. Maybe there is still hope for your “great American novel” after all.

Truth Stranger than Fiction

Friday, September 7

The Dawkins Delusion

"Angels fly," G.K. Chesterton once said, "because they take themselves lightly." Maybe they provide an example Richard Dawkins could learn from--at least that is the premise of a new book by John Cornwell, Darwin's Angel: An Angelic Response to the God Delusion, delightfully reviewed in the London Times this week by Salley Vickers.

Wednesday, September 5

D. James Kennedy (1930-2007)

"Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord, says the Spirit. They will rest from their labors, and their deeds follow them" (Revelation 14.13).

D. James Kennedy, was one of the most influential Christian pastors, thinkers, writers, social reformers, educators, evangelists, and broadcasters of our generation. He was also my pastor, my friend, my boss, my mentor, and my hero. This morning at around 2:15, Dr. Kennedy went home to be with the Lord--he had been quite ill over the last several months. A memorial service has been scheduled for Thursday, September 13, at Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.

The last time I saw Dr. Kennedy face-to-face, he called me his "son in the faith." I have never been paid a greater compliment. May God continue to multiply Dr. Kennedy's words, his example, and his influence for the glory of Christ and His Kingdom--and may I have the courage to uphold his legacy of Gospel faithfulness as a true "son in the faith."

More Alive than Ever

“Now, I know that someday I am going to come to what some people will say is the end of this life. They will probably put me in a box and roll me right down here in front of the church, and some people will gather around, and a few people will cry. But I have told them not to do that because I don’t want them to cry. I want them to begin the service with the Doxology and end with the Hallelujah chorus, because I am not going to be there, and I am not going to be dead. I will be more alive than I have ever been in my life, and I will be looking down upon you poor people who are still in the land of dying and have not yet joined me in the land of the living. And I will be alive forevermore, in greater health and vitality and joy than ever, ever, I or anyone has known before.” D. James Kennedy, Ph.D.

A Life Well-Lived

November 3, 1930 – Dennis James Kennedy is born to George and Ermine Kennedy in Augusta, Georgia.

December 1930 – The Kennedy family moves to Chicago, settling in an apartment just 50 yards from Lake Michigan.

1945 – The family relocates once more to Tampa, Florida.

1952 – Arthur Murray Dance instructor Jim Kennedy meets Anne Lewis and signs her up for six months of dance instructions.

1953 – Sleeping late on a Sunday morning, Jim Kennedy hears the Gospel for the very first time from a radio preacher. Shortly thereafter he professes faith in Christ.

December 3, 1955 – After fighting God’s call to full-time ministry for nearly a year, Jim Kennedy, with great trepidation, quits his job as a dance studio manager.

December 3, 1955 – Jim Kennedy and Anne Lewis become engaged.

December 4, 1955 – Jim is given the chance to preach at a local Presbyterian church and, to his surprise, is employed as the interim minister the same day.

August 25, 1956 – Jim and Anne are married at First Presbyterian Church of Lakeland, Florida.

Fall 1956 – Jim Kennedy begins seminary training at Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, Georgia.

May 11, 1959 – Days before his seminary graduation, Jim receives a letter from the Home Missions Committee of the Everglades Presbytery inviting him to consider pastoring a new church to be started in Fort Lauderdale.

June 21, 1959 – The first Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church worship service is held at McNab Elementary School, led by D. James Kennedy.

July 21, 1959 – Rev. D. James Kennedy is ordained.

1960 – Rev. Kennedy tells his fledgling congregation: “You know what? I believe we can change the world!”

July 31, 1960 – Rev. D. James Kennedy is installed as minister of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church.

1962 – Rev. Kennedy begins to train church members to share Christ using the techniques learned from Rev. Kennedy Smartt.

March 16, 1962 – Jennifer is born and adopted into the Kennedy family.

March 18, 1962 – A new church building seating 500 on Commercial Boulevard is dedicated.

February 20, 1967 – The first Evangelism Explosion clinic is held with 36 people in attendance.

Summer 1967 – Tragedy strikes when Anne undergoes cancer surgery. Rev. Kennedy later describes God’s provision during that dark time in his message, “Songs in the Night.”

1970 – Evangelism Explosion, the first of more than 65 books by Dr. Kennedy is published by Tyndale. To date, more than 1.5 million copies have been sold.

1970 – Like A Mighty Army, a dramatic motion picture depicting the story of Evangelism Explosion, is produced by Gospel Films.

August 28, 1970 – Lay Evangelism, Inc., later changed to Evangelism Explosion III International, Inc., is organized.

April 11, 1971 (Easter Sunday) – Groundbreaking for new church on Federal Highway.

August 1971 – Classes begin at Westminster Academy with 300 students enrolled.

February 3, 1974 – The new church building on Federal Highway is dedicated. Dr. Billy Graham addresses the 11,000 people in attendance, some on benches outside the church, and 597 decision for Christ are recorded.

October 1, 1974 – Radio station WAFG (90.3 FM) is licensed as a non-commercial educational station.

October 3, 1976 – Church membership reaches 5,000 people.

January 8, 1978 – Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church votes to leave the Presbyterian Church (U.S.) and unites with the Presbyterian Church in America (P.C.A.).

September 17, 1978 – First television broadcast of worship service.

February 1979 – Dr. Kennedy receives his Ph.D. from New York University, completing his list of degrees as follows: A.B., M.Div., M.Th., D.D., D.Sac.Lit., Ph.D., Litt.D., D.Sac.Theol., and D.Humane Lit.

November 30, 1980 – Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church celebrates its 20th anniversary.

May 29, 1990 – George Kennedy, Dr. Kennedy’s brother, dies. Dr. Kennedy learns after his death that George, who had long resisted the Gospel, was led to Christ on his death bed by a young hospital chaplain.

1984 – Truths That Transform, Dr. Kennedy’s daily radio program begins.

November 24, 1985 – Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church celebrates its 25th anniversary.

1988 - With Evangelism Explosion in only 66 nations, Dr. Kennedy challenged the organization’s vice presidents to take the lay-evangelism training program to every nation by 1995.

March 14, 1989 – The Session of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church establishes Knox Theological Seminary and appoints Dr. Kennedy Chancellor.

March 30-April 1, 1990 – Coral Ridge Church marks its 30th Anniversary during a “Celebrate the Dream” weekend celebration.

September 1990 – Knox Theological Seminary begins classes to train pastors and laymen in a graduate school of theology.

1992 – The Kennedy Commentary, a daily 90-second radio commentary, is launched.

May 21, 1994 – Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church celebrates Dr. Kennedy’s 35th year in Gospel ministry.

September 14, 1995 – Dr. Kennedy dedicates the D. James Kennedy Center for Christian Statesmanship in Washington, D.C.

February 23, 1996 – Evangelism Explosion International becomes the first Christian organization in history to establish its ministry in all 211 nations of the world.

March 7, 1999 – Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church celebrates its 40th anniversary.

December 2000 – Along with Dean Jones, Dr. Kennedy co-hosts Who Is This Jesus, a one-hour documentary viewed by some 12 million people nationwide.

February 15, 2005 – Dr. Kennedy is inducted into the National Religious Broadcasters Hall of Fame.

October 2005 – After Hurricane Wilma rips off the church roof and drenches the sanctuary, Dr. Kennedy encourages the congregation, telling them this is “our finest hour.”

December 9, 2005 – Dr. Kennedy is feted at a surprise 75th birthday celebration.

August 25, 2006 – Dr. and Mrs. Kennedy celebrate 50 years of marriage.

September 5, 2007 – Dr. Kennedy enters into the presence of God in Heaven.

Surprises Today?

Monday, September 3

What I'm Listening To

Antediluvian Man

A sharp antithesis cuts a wide swath,
Across the whole fabric of space and time,
It’s divide sets kith and kin on separate paths,
It’s jagged serrated edge altogether divides,
With Cain to one side, and Seth to yet another,
‘Tis the tale of two cities, two destinies, two ways,
Enoch and Enosh twin sons of different mothers,
Till mighty Rephaim impose a paler shade of gray,
Hoping to forget such bitter, tragic, noxious climes,
We skulk in caves, and graves, and bones,
Heedless of the hope invested in archon-lines
As told in musty, dusty, glorious tomes.