Mad as a Hatter!


I said “He’s as mad as a hatter!”

“I thought that’s what you said. But what do you mean by that?”

You’ve never read Alice in Wonderland?

“Well, way back when . . . and . . . Oh . . . I guess there was something about that in it wasn’t there?”

Yep. But the expression goes much further back than that.

“Tell me about it. What does it mean?”

“You see, it’s like this —-

When people wore felt hats (which thankfully, they no longer do) in the process of manufacturing these hats, for some reason or other, they used mercury. Exposure to too much mercury has a strange effect on people: they begin to twitch and do all sorts of strange things like that. Their antics were so peculiar that people thought they were mad (or, as we’d say , “nuts”).

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“‘What is it?’ I asked?”

A bobble-head of John Calvin.

[That’s what he told me as I tore open the box. Then I asked again in disbelief, “A what?”]

You heard me. A bobble-head (one that bounces around when you shake it) and the likeness to pictures I have of Calvin is rather good too!.What are you going to do with it?

“I’ll put it up on a top shelf in my library. I don’t have a bust of Calvin anywhere, even though I wrote about the preacher who nearly got beaned with one in one of my Greg Dawson counseling novels. So, it will now serve as my study’s ‘bust.'”

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A Christian Gentleman

Having received my share of brickbats in the past, I am greatly pleased to tell you that the person who mistook James E Adams’ booklet for something I had written has emailed me, very graciously apologizing. I accepted it in as gracious a manner as I could in return. It is always reassuring that there is still someone out there who isn’t going to beat up on you for something you wrote, I appreciated his note and think that we could be good friends, given the opportunity.

Frankly, I wasn’t all that disturbed about the simple, but understandable, error. It isn’t the first time it happened. When I taught at Westminster Theological Seminary, and James was a student there, sometimes our mail got mixed up.

My only reason for writing was to remind us all (including me) to be extra careful about references and citations.

Thanks again, brother, for your very kind email.

We All Make Mistakes

I guess we all do it from time to time. But it is a problem.

“What are you talking about this time?”

Confusing one person (and/or belief) with another.

“What happened?”

Well, someone on a website has confused my name (Jay E. Adams) with someone else (James E. Adams). With best wishes to James—whom I know, but haven’t seen for ages—I say to all who would tend to do so, “look before you leap.” Take care to be correct. As I’m sure James doesn’t want to have to defend my writings (at times I get tired of doing so myself), so too I don’t want to have to defend his (I’m sure he wants to do that, and not have me do so). So, friends—enemies—neutral persons (as if there could be such), please distinguish the things that differ. Granted that our names are very similar—in fact, if only two initials were used, they would be identical. However, on his booklet, James doesn’t use initials—he uses his name; just as I do on my stuff.

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Update About This and That

Dr. Adams preached last Sunday at Redeemer Presbyterian Church. You can listen to his message on our website or download it as a podcast.

I am pretty much recovered from my heart attack and now am working on losing weight, eating right, and all that good stuff. We have appreciated all the prayer and expressions of concern. Thank you!

We are negotiating a new lease on our offices that will lock in our great deal for many more years to come. Please pray that we will be able to close the deal during the coming week.

The annual NANC conference will be October 5-7 in Spartanburg—about a half hour from our office. We are planning to hold an open house at our office on Sunday afternoon, October 4 from 1:30 to 4:00 p.m. Plan to stop by and let us give you the tour!

Classes at RBCTI, here in South Carolina, begin on September 14. Call the church office at (864) 574-1661 to register.

Summer’s Here

So, the kids are out of school—all except those required to take summer school courses.

So, what will your kids do during vacation time?

The older ones may find a job—probably a little tougher this year to do so with the money pinch.

But what of the younger ones? Bible camp? Vacation Bible School? Work around the house doing small chores? Loaf? Get into everyone’s hair saying, “I’m bored?”

Probably you parents who read this will have to make some plans for them—or help them make plans if they are older. But why not sit down and take some time to think through what would be the most profitable thing for them to do spiritually? Think of all the time they have to use—either profitably or otherwise. If you don’t guide them, they may simply fritter away the summer and be none the closer to the Lord when fall comes than now—perhaps even less closer. So, my suggestion is—take enough time to do some planning rather than let “nature (sinful nature) take its course?” 

Sticking Close

For a time the humming birds seemed to have deserted our feeder. But now they are back in all their feisty glory—beautiful little birds chasing each other all across the back yard. They had lots of flowers before to visit, so our feeder was just one stop among many. But now that the flowers are fading away in the heat, they have decided to come to the one unfailing source still available—our sugar water feeder.

How like people!

“In what way?”

In that they will use one another only when they need them, and forget them when they don’t.


Yes, but that isn’t true of a genuine friend.

“How will he act?”

Listen to Proverbs 18:24:

A man with many friends may come to ruin,
but the one who shows love sticks closer than a brother.


On Occasion . . .

Some Christians look for causes to support. Other than those matters that God requires us to engage in that attitude often is wrong.

“Wrong? Wrong to seek to do good?”

No. No. You misunderstand. Let’s consider a verse:

Don’t quit doing what is fine; at the right time we will reap if we don’t relax our efforts . . .

“See? I was right.”

Let me finish reading:

. . . So, then, as the occasion arises, let us do good for all men, but especially for the members of the household of faith.
                                                               Galatians 6:9, 10

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The Heat’s On

I don’t mean politics, though that’s the cause of it.

Rather, I’m talking about cutting down on the electric bill by using the whole house attic fan that I had sense enough to have installed years back (one of the few smart things I’ve ever done!).

And it works. Instead of air conditioning this past month (and normally, I’d have had it on) we did without it—without either roasting or frying. I don’t say that it won’t get so hot we’ll have to resort to it at times, but the fan will basically replace the AC. Listen, I believe in moving ahead, not backwards—I’d use AC if finances were better and the government hadn’t made it hard to get by these days. But others did so in the past and I can too.

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