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Wordsworth wrote an endless poem in blank verse on” the growth of a poet’s mind.”  I shall attempt a more modest feat for a more distracted age: a blog, “Things which a Lifetime of Trying to Be a Poet has Taught Me.”

 Do you ever recite the Apostles’ Creed or the Nicene Creed in church?  What exactly is taking place when you do?  They are not Scripture, but they are ancient summaries of Scripture made by the early church to protect essential teachings of the Gospel from dilution or corruption by various deviations taking place already in their times.  They connect us with our forebears in the faith and still let us summarize essential doctrine—and more.

The Council of Nicaea

CREDO

The content, the commitment we express

When mind and heart embrace the ancient Creed

Are faith and fealty.  That we confess

Our faith means it is more than just a guess:

Our Lord’s own blood is what has guaranteed

The content, so commitment we express.

Acknowledging the Law that we transgress,

We find forgiveness, know that we are freed

To faith and fealty when we confess.

We walk by faith, not sight; still, nonetheless,

We’ve tasted and we’ve seen, and so we feed.

The content’s the commitment we express.

This ceremonial assent, this “Yes!”

Flows gladly from both mind and heart:  the deed

Is faith and fealty when we confess.

Not just a ritual; it is more, not less:

We stake our very souls, for when we plead

This content, the commitment we express

Is faith and fealty when we confess.

Remember: for more poetry like this, go to https://lanternhollow.wordpress.com/store/ and order Stars Through the Clouds! Also look for Inklings of Reality and Reflections from Plato’s Cave, Williams’ newest books from Lantern Hollow Press: Evangelical essays in pursuit of Truth, Goodness, and Beauty.  And look for Williams’ very latest books: Deeper Magic: The Theology behind the Writings of C. S. Lewis (Baltimore: Square Halo Books, 2016), An Encouraging Thought: The Christian Worldview in the Writings of L. R. R. Tolkien (Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2018), and The Young Christian’s Survival Guide: Common Questions Young Christians Are Asked about God, the Bible, and the Christian Faith Answered (Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2019)!  Order from the publisher or Amazon.

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Wordsworth wrote an endless poem in blank verse on” the growth of a poet’s mind.”  I shall attempt a more modest feat for a more distracted age: a blog, “Things which a Lifetime of Trying to Be a Poet has Taught Me.”

This poem is the prelude to my retelling of the King Arthur story, “Tales of Taliessin.”  Taliessin was the king’s poet.  If this prelude whets your appetite, you can read the whole cycle of poems in Stars through the Clouds: The Collected Poetry of Donald T. Williams (Lantern Hollow Press, 2019).

Prelude:

TALIESSIN AT GLASTONBURY

“The starveling hermit praying in this cell
Was once the mighty knight Sir Lancelot.
Pass quietly, but look upon him well.
The path from many-towered Camelot
Has many twists and turns, but to this spot
It leads. Might you have leisure for the tale?
Well, rest we then beneath yon spreading oak.”
He sat and twitched aside his hooded cloak,
Resting a small harp upon his knee.
“I was King Arthur’s minstrel,” then he said,
“My job: to keep the Great Hall filled with glee.
And all those golden days, so quickly fled,
Passed in all their sorrow and their glory
Before my hungry ears and watching eyes.
And so, if otherwise
You’ve heard in legend or in allegory
Some version of the deeds that there were done,
Allow one who was party to the story
To speak. No greater honor e’er was won–
Or lost–in any land beneath the sun.”
He bowed his head in memory of the king,
And then began to sing.Remember: for more poetry like this, go to https://lanternhollow.wordpress.com/store/ and order Stars Through the Clouds! Also look for Inklings of Reality and Reflections from Plato’s Cave, Williams’ newest books from Lantern Hollow Press: Evangelical essays in pursuit of Truth, Goodness, and Beauty.  And look for Williams’ very latest books: Deeper Magic: The Theology behind the Writings of C. S. Lewis (Baltimore: Square Halo Books, 2016), An Encouraging Thought: The Christian Worldview in the Writings of L. R. R. Tolkien (Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2018), and The Young Christian’s Survival Guide: Common Questions Young Christians Are Asked about God, the Bible, and the Christian Faith Answered (Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2019)!  Order from the publisher or Amazon.

NEW BOOK IN APOLOGETICS!

New Book in Apologetics!

THE YOUNG CHRISTIAN’S SURVIVAL GUIDE: COMMON QUESTIONS YOUNG CHRISTIANS ARE ASKED ABOUT GOD, THE BIBLE, AND THE CHRISTIAN FAITH ANSWERED, by Donald T. Williams, Phd.  Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2019

What are some of the questions covered?

  1. You claim the Bible is inspired because it says it is, right (2 Tim. 3:16)? Isn’t that circular reasoning?
  2. You claim the Bible was inspired, but there was no inspired list of which books that is true of. So how can we know which ones to trust?
  3. With so many different copies that have so many differences, how can we even know what the Bible says?
  4. Why can’t the people who wrote the four Gospels get their story straight?
  5. Didn’t the Council of Nicaea just arbitrarily pick the books for the Bible that they agreed with and suppress all the rest with political power?
  6. People used to believe in miracles because they didn’t understand science. Don’t we know better than that now?
  7. That a man rose from the dead takes a lot of believing. How could you ever have enough evidence for a belief like that?
  8. Science has proved that human beings evolved over millions of years rather than being created in six days. Why are you still clinging to ancient myths?
  9. Just because the Bible is true for you, why does that make it true for me?
  10. How can you base your modern life on a book that was written for a primitive culture?
  11. Doesn’t the Bible support genocide?
  12. Doesn’t the Bible support racism?
  13. Doesn’t the Bible support slavery?
  14. Doesn’t the Bible support homophobia?
  15. Doesn’t the Bible support the oppression and abuse of women?
  16. There are so many religions, all sincerely seeking the same goal. What makes you Christians so arrogant that you think yours is the only way?
  17. What about those who have never heard the Gospel?
  18. If God is a God of love, why did he let my loved one die?
  19. How can it be just for God to impose an infinite punishment (Hell forever) for finite sins?

Order from Amazon or click here for an introductory discount from the publisher:

https://www.christianpublishers.org/apps/webstore/products/show/7860181

Donald T. Williams, PhD, is R. A. Forrest Scholar at Toccoa Falls College.  A well-known Inklings scholar, he is past president of the International Society of Christian Apologetics and the author of eleven other books, including Deeper Magic: The Theology behind the Writings of C. S. Lewis (Baltimore: Square Halo Books, 2016) and An Encouraging Thought: The Christian Worldview in the Writings of J. R. R. Tolkien (Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2018).

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Wordsworth wrote an endless poem in blank verse on” the growth of a poet’s mind.”  I shall attempt a more modest feat for a more distracted age: a blog, “Things which a Lifetime of Trying to Be a Poet has Taught Me.”

WHY GOD IS TO BE WORSHIPPED

God is a Circle whose center is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere.” – Traditional Definition

I am like the center of a circle equidistant from all points on the circumference, but you are not.” – Love, in Dante’s Vita Nuova

Dante Alighiere

He is pure Light without a hint of turning

Or shadowed spot.

He is pure Vision, perfectly discerning

Which from what.

He is pure Holiness, forever spurning

Stain or blot.

He is pure Love.  Our story from His yearning

Derives its plot.

He is pure Might, whose will cannot be hindered

By rebel plot.

He is a Sphere whose every point is centered,

And we are not.

Remember: for more poetry like this, go to https://lanternhollow.wordpress.com/store/ and order Stars Through the Clouds! Also look for Inklings of Reality and Reflections from Plato’s Cave, Williams’ newest books from Lantern Hollow Press: Evangelical essays in pursuit of Truth, Goodness, and Beauty.  And look for Williams’ very latest books: Deeper Magic: The Theology behind the Writings of C. S. Lewis (Baltimore: Square Halo Books, 2016) and “An Encouraging Thought”: The Christian Worldview in the Writings of L. R. R. Tolkien (Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2018)!  Order from the publisher or Amazon.

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Wordsworth wrote an endless poem in blank verse on” the growth of a poet’s mind.”  I shall attempt a more modest feat for a more distracted age: a blog, “Things which a Lifetime of Trying to Be a Poet has Taught Me.”

Sehnsucht, a German word for “longing,” was the technical term C. S. Lewis used for “Joy,” the unfulfilled desire evoked by literature, music, or nature that was better than any other having, and which he interpreted as a signpost pointing to the fact that we were made for God.  It comes out of the blue when a glimpse of a higher beauty comes through to you with the shocking realization that we were made for something that this world can hint at but cannot give us.  Has it ever hit you out of the blue?  This is an attempt to record one of the times it hit me.

C. S. Lewis, Theologian of Joy.

SEHNSUCHT

When the fog obscures the outlines of the trees

But breaks to show the sharpness of the stars

And the blood feels sudden chill, although the breeze

Is warm, and all the old internal scars

From stabbing beauty start to ache anew;

When mushrooms gather in a fairy ring

And every twig and grass-blade drips with dew

And then a whippoorwill begins to sing;

When all the world beside is hushed, awaiting

The sun as if it were his first arising

And you discover that, anticipating,

You’ve held your breath and find the fact surprising:

Then all the old internal wounds awake.

The pain is sweet we bear for beauty’s sake.

Remember: for more poetry like this, go to https://lanternhollow.wordpress.com/store/ and order Stars Through the Clouds! Also look for Inklings of Reality and Reflections from Plato’s Cave, Williams’ newest books from Lantern Hollow Press: Evangelical essays in pursuit of Truth, Goodness, and Beauty.  And look for Williams’ very latest books: Deeper Magic: The Theology behind the Writings of C. S. Lewis (Baltimore: Square Halo Books, 2016) and “An Encouraging Thought”: The Christian Worldview in the Writings of L. R. R. Tolkien (Cambridge, OH: Christian Publishing House, 2018)!  Order from the publisher or Amazon.