I appreciated this reminder by Ray Ortlund about how God is determined to bless us:

God: “I am your God. You are my people. I will bless you.”

Sinners: “But at our best, we barely believe you.”

God: “True. But I will bless you.”

Sinners: “But we don’t deserve you.”

God: “More than you know! But I will bless you.”

Sinners: “But we don’t live up to this. We’re cowards.”

God: “You are. But I will bless you.”

Sinners: “But we’re so entrenched in this world, we’ll never change.”

God: “Not true. You are Zion, the eternal city of God. I will bless you accordingly, and everything will change.”

— Ray Ortlund

“The world is by no means averse to religion. In fact, it is devoted to it with a passion. It will buy any recipe for salvation as long as that formula leaves the responsibility for cooking up salvation firmly in human hands. The world is drowning in religion. It is lying full fathom forty in the cults of spiritual growth, physical health, psychological self-improvement, and ethical probity— not to mention the religions of money, success, upward mobility, sin prevention, and cooking without animal fats. But it is scared out of its wits by any mention of the grace that takes the world home gratis.”

— Robert Capon

 

Tullian at Liberate

March 6, 2014

If you haven’t watched this video yet, I encourage you to do so. It will be one of the most encouraging hours of your week.

The Center of the Bible

March 4, 2014

The very center and core of the whole Bible is the doctrine of the grace of God— the grace of God which depends not one whit upon anything that is in man, but is absolutely undeserved, resistless and sovereign.

–J. Gresham Machen

 

Destinations

December 3, 2013

B003D0TAM8.01._SX490_SCLZZZZZZZ_V190274968_There is lots of good stuff to pass on this morning:

You might have heard about Kirsten Powers conversion to Christianity. Here is an interview with her concerning her journey to faith.

Also, you might have heard recently of the new pastor who dressed as a homeless man the first Sunday at his new church. Supposedly, he wasn’t treated well by the people in the church. As you might have guessed, this whole thing is a hoax.

Bowman is a small church. Here is an encouragement about what small churches can do.

You might have heard, Rick Warren has a new diet book out. As might be expected, the reviews are starting to emerge. Challies seems to give it a marginal thumbs up, while Riddlebarger asks why Rick should be telling us to eat kale. His dander is definitely up.

If you like thinking about the interface between science and scripture (or if you have children who do), then you might pick up “A Reformed Approach to Science and Scripture.” It is free today for Kindle. Also, “Marriage Matters: Extraordinary Change Through Ordinary Moments” is free for Nook and Kindle. Both of these books look valuable.

I remember reading as a freshman in high school these words: “According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him, in love having predestinated us unto the adoption of sons by jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will” (Eph 1:4-5). This sentence from that moment has shaped the contours of my theology. Being a simple guy, I took the sentence at face value. It made sense to me. I’m in the family of God SIMPLY because God chose me; not because I chose him. Given the fact that I was born a spiritual corpse, it made sense to me that God raised me from the dead. Like with Lazarus, he gave me spiritual life and enabled me to believe. Thus God gets all the glory. Granted, I believed, but it was only because of God’s prior work of regeneration. God didn’t saved me against my will. He graciously changed my will by giving me spiritual life. Because of regeneration, I now run to God, not away from him. The Lord is my salvation. He didn’t merely make salvation possible, he actually saved me. Again, to God be the glory. Chloe alerted me to the video below. Given my Calvinistic bent, I so appreciate this poem by John Piper:

Destinations

November 5, 2013

Here is a reminder that we never know about the influence we might have. Our task is to know the Word and love the people around us. We love those around us by sharing the truth. Perhaps there is a Spurgeon in your company today.  By the way, “The Gospel Focus of Charles Spurgeon” by Lawson is free all month long. The Nook version can be found here.

Jesus told us to love our neighbor as ourselves. How does this look in our lives? Here David Murray gives ten ways we can practically love those around us.

We are saved by works. This sounds heretical but it is true. God is a just God. Those who enter heaven will do so on the basis of perfect law-keeping.

Cross Talk” is free TODAY ONLY. I read this book several years ago and it is definitely worth the time (since money isn’t part of the equation). So, get it now.

Our kids are brain damaged:

People who are no longer sure that God loves and accepts them in Jesus, apart from they present spiritual achievements, are subconsciously radically insecure persons…. Their insecurity shows itself in pride, a fierce, defensive assertion of their own righteousness, and defensive criticism of others. They come naturally to hate other cultural styles and other races in order to bolster their own security and discharge their suppressed anger.

Richard Lovelace quote by Tim Keller in “The Prodigal God.”