The CCEL Times 4.5 (May 1, 2009)

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In This Issue:

From the Director

Did God create swine flu? Does he allow it to exist? If it becomes
pandemic, will it be attributable in any sense to God? In the
theoretical realm, the question of God and evil is something of a
poser, but it becomes acute when it strikes home in personal stories of
disease or injury or grief. A five-year-old girl’s rape and murder.
Betrayal by a loved one. Where is God in such situations? Why doesn’t
he save us?

This question is perennial, going back to the book of Job at least.
In the eighteenth century Hume traces it back to Epicurus as an
argument against the existence of God: "Is he willing to prevent evil,
but not able? Then he is impotent. Is he able, but not willing? then he
is malevolent. Is he both able and willing? whence then is evil?"

The CCEL has an excellent philosophical treatment on the topic by Alvin Plantinga, a philosopher at Notre Dame University whom Time
magazine once called "the leading philosopher of God" (and whom I call
"father"). For those meditating on such matters from a more personal
perspective, I’d recommend the book of
Job, Psalm 42, and Chapter II.12 of Thomas a Kempis’ Imitation of Christ.

Harry Plantinga

Director of the CCEL


Hymnary.org Tutorial

Hymnary.org Tutorial #1: Searching for Psalm 98

by Greg Scheer


In this first ever Hymary.org video tutorial, you’ll get tips
from Greg Scheer about searching more effectively. You’re bound to
learn something new about the Hymnary’s powerful search tools.

View this tutorial

Read more about Hymnary.org



What’s New

Hymns of the Great Church and Hymns from the East

Translated with introduction and notes by John Brownlie

Published in 1900

True hymns are sacred lyrics, and a lyric to be lyrical and
heart appealing, must be inevitable. It must be the spontaneous
expression of the heart of the author—an expression which had to come.
It is the latent secret of the power of true hymns, for what must be
uttered will assuredly, sooner or later, find its way to some heart.
Such jets of living poetry must be awaited: they cannot be forced. But
a translator must deliberately sit down at his desk and
work—manufacture, if you will—and endeavour to turn on the lathe of
graceful culture, elegancies which readers may admire, but will never
feel.
—from the introduction to Hymns from the East

Read this introduction at the CCEL

Read these classics at the CCEL




Meet the CCEL Employees

Andy Hanson

Andy Hanson joined the CCEL team in December 2008. His duties
include implementing user-suggested edits, as well as scanning,
digitizing, and uploading books to the CCEL website. Andy is a husband,
father of two young boys, and a graduate of Grand Valley State
University, where he received his bachelor’s degree in Computer
Science. He worked for the last six years as a software engineer for GE
Aviation. Currently, Andy is seeking his Master’s of Divinity degree
from Calvin Theological Seminary and attends Oakdale Park Christian
Reformed Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he is a member of the
preaching team.

Learn more about the vision and people behind the CCEL.



Classic Sermons

Leo the Great (c. 400-461), on Christ’s Ascension:

Since then Christ’s Ascension is our uplifting, and the
hope of the Body is raised, whither the glory of the Head has gone
before, let us exult, dearly-beloved, with worthy joy and delight in
the loyal paying of thanks. For to-day not only are we confirmed as
possessors of paradise, but have also in Christ penetrated the heights
of heaven, and have gained still greater things through Christ’s
unspeakable grace than we had lost through the devil’s malice. For us,
whom our virulent enemy had driven out from the bliss of our first
abode, the Son of God has made members of Himself and placed at the
right hand of the Father, with Whom He lives and reigns in the unity of
the Holy Spirit, God for ever and ever. Amen.
— from Sermon LXXIII, on the Lord’s Ascension

Read this sermon at the CCEL

Read more sermons by this author at the CCEL


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