Sarah Palin owns those words

The National Review’s John O’Sullivan, who wrote speeches for Margaret Thatcher, gives great insight into the complaints from those who belittle Sarah Palin’s speech at the Republican National Convention was little more than reading from the teleprompter:

Speakers have to make speeches their own. They have to feel the sentiments and know the facts. After all, if they get something wrong, it will be quoted against them for years — these days on YouTube.

Even then the most sincere speaker may lack the skills to put across a good speech well. Matt Scully is a superb speechwriter, but his best work was sometimes awkwardly delivered.

Not this time.

I devised a small test while watching.

Matt has a slightly aggressive sense of mischief. How would Mrs. Palin deliver his mischievous thrusts? So whenever I heard a hint of Matt’s mischief in the words, I would check out the Governor’s expression.

Invariably there was a glint of mischief in her eyes.

Matt, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship.

College survival tips

From Justin Taylor at Between Two Worlds:

John Mark Reynolds has a helpful column here offering 10 tips for college students getting ready for Fall.

What follows is the barebones outline, but if the topic is of interest, you’ll want to read the whole thing.

1. Ignore advice to “remake” yourself the first day you get to college.

2. Do something each week that puts you in contact with people older and younger than your peer group.

3. If you have a decent relationship with your parents keep it up.

4. If you are going to college, then go. You are in college to learn. In America, education often includes getting a job skill, but should also be about becoming a good, civilized citizen.

5. Find a faculty mentor during your first year.

6. Take classes that are hard from full-time professors that love to teach.

7. Secretaries and support staff are overworked, underpaid, and very powerful. You should be good to them out of virtue, but you must do it to thrive. The friendship you make with the department secretary now will pay dividends over the years. (One way I judge the character of a student is by how they treat the support staff.)

8. Books are not yet antiques. Go to the library. Talk to librarians. They are faculty members that are often under-utilized.

9. Don’t be too quick to pick a major, but try to do so by the end of the first year.

10. Live like an adult in college which includes moderating your passions.

What do you mean by ‘got saved’?

John Piper answers the question: Do I need to understand the nuances of how I got saved?

Well, it depends on what you mean by nuances. If you mean the distinction between being judged according to works and being judged on the basis of works, that’s a huge and significant difference.

That’s because the Bible is so clear—and our own consciences bear witness—that if our acceptance with God is grounded finally in our performances of the law, in doing good deeds, then I’m not going to have any security here and I’m not going to be accepted with God in the end. God demands a perfect righteousness, which is what Christ provides for us in his own obedience; and he demands that we be forgiven for our sins, which is what Jesus’ blood provides for us on the cross.

Click below for Piper’s whole answer.

How important is it to understand the details of how God saved me?