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April 03, 2009
The Magician’s Nephew
Russell Moore writes about The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe and The Magician’s Nephew and gives his take on which comes first. I agree with him. “The Magician’s Nephew is what would be called in today’s film lingo a “prequel,” rather than a beginning. The narrative takes place chronologically before the other stories. But it makes sense only when read after them. That’s because it ties together loose ends and throws further light on the origins behind some of the characters and plotlines readers have already grown to know.”
ESV Free for Kindle
The ESV is currently available for the Kindle for free!
The Europeanization of America
Mark Steyn: “Most Americans don’t yet grasp the scale of the Obama project. The naysayers complain, oh, it’s another Jimmy Carter, or it’s the new New Deal, or it’s LBJ’s Great Society applied to health care… You should be so lucky. Forget these parochial nickel’n’dime comparisons. It’s all those multiplied a gazillionfold and nuclearized - or Europeanized, which is less dramatic but ultimately more lethal.”
The Modesty of Personal Restraint
Lydia Brownback pens a fantastic article about single women and the modesty of personal restraint. Though most people, when they think of modesty think of necklines and hemlines, “We are just as prone—if not more so—to overexpose what’s under our skin. Revealing too much about ourselves is immodest too.”
The Public Rebuke of False Teachers
James MacDonald: “I do not view Brian as an ‘erring weaker brother,’ worthy of sympathy or olive branches, but rather as a dangerous false teacher who repackages mainline liberal theology. (Have the past 50 years not been adequate to see how liberal theology empties churches and damns souls?) More dangerous still is that McLaren packages his false teaching and denials of Scripture as solutions to some of the excesses currently plaguing evangelicalism—the danger being his winning over of young people who have legitimate complaints about the current church, but who lack the discernment to see that his solutions are often unbiblical even when his critiques are fair.”
Easter and Commercialism
Slate suggests why Easter stubbornly resists the commercialism that swallowed Christmas. “So what enables Easter to maintain its religious purity and not devolve into the consumerist nightmare that is Christmas? Well, for one thing, it’s hard to make a palatable consumerist holiday out of Easter when its back story is, at least in part, so gruesome. Christmas is cuddly. Easter, despite the bunnies, is not.” And incisive quote: “Easter is an event that demands a ‘yes’ or a ‘no.’ There is no ‘whatever.’”
With the Debt, I Thee Wed
Owen Strachan looks to the reality of so many young couples entering marriage burdened with huge debts.
The Blackaby View of God’s Will
Dan Phillips is looking at Henry and Richard Blackaby’s very popular but very faulty view of God’s will and making decisions.
April 02, 2009
I Hate That Music
Bob Kauflin writes about why we should not be so fast to write off music we do not initially like. Of his ten points, I liked this one best: “Listening to music the masses have never heard of doesn’t make us better.”
An Interview with Keith Mathison
Alex Chediak has an interview with Keith Mathison. They discuss From Age to Age: The Unfolding of Biblical Eschatology, Mathison’s massive new book on eschatology.
What Does it Mean “To Me?”
John MacArthur asks “what does it mean ‘to me?’” and says “That’s a fashionable concern, judging from the trends in devotional booklets, home Bible study discussions, Sunday-school literature, and most popular preaching. The question of what Scripture means has taken a back seat to the issue of what it means ‘to me.’”
Is Obama Skidding or Crashing?
While there are probably not a lot of things on which Penn Jillette and I would agree, I do enjoy some of his commentaries. This one is, well, interesting. I think he asks questions a lot of people are asking. “Obama tells us that we can spend our way out of debt. He tells us that even though the government had control over the banks and did nothing to stop the bad that’s going on, if we give them more control over more other bank-like things, then they can make sure bad stuff doesn’t happen ever again. He says we can get out of all those big wars President Bush caused by sending more troops into Afghanistan. And I don’t know. I really don’t know.”
Deal of the Day - A Calvin Package
Reformation Heritage Book has packaged four books on Calvin and Calvinism and is offering them at a great discount.
April 01, 2009
Did Evangelicals Curb the Housing Bubble?
“A new study by Christopher W. Crowe, an economist for the International Monetary Fund, found that during the last two housing booms in the United States, regions with high concentrations of evangelicals saw lower gains in home prices and less volatility than similar regions with fewer evangelical residents.”
Saddleback Silliness
This is a rather bizarre invitation from Rick Warren to the people in or near his church. “1. Open your heart to Jesus Christ. 2. Attend Class 101: Discovering Your Church Family. 3. Sign our membership covenant (explained in class). 4. Be baptized the way Jesus commanded and modeled for us. YOU CAN FINISH ALL 4 REQUIREMENTS IN ONE DAY - THIS SATURDAY!”
Speed Listening
If you haven’t already discovered this blog, you should give it a look. Dr. David Murray of Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary is releasing an ongoing series of short video blogs, each of which covers an interesting topic.
The Green Letter Bible?
“A nicely presented bible (NRSV) with the added bonus that verses that relate in anyway to the environment are shown in green, there is a special index for them and a “Green bible trail” is plotted. Includes 126 pages of essays from folks such as N. T. Wright, Brian McLaren and Wendell Berry. Cotton/Linen cover, recycled paper, soy based ink, water based coating of course.”
Deon
Deidox films has a new short film ready to view. This one looks at a police officer who works on Skid Row in LA.
March 31, 2009
Doug Wilson on Fireproof
“If I set myself to think of couples in marriages that I think would be greatly helped by watching this movie, I would run out of fingers inside of a minute. I can also think of Christians who would be offended by the schlock, but many of them would be those who know more about how a movie ought to be made than about how a woman ought to be treated. And they would rather watch a movie about a woman being abused so long as the movie was made right than to have the woman treated right in a movie that offended their refined sensibilities.”
CT Reviews Death by Love
“Sadly, Driscoll and Breshears too often become mired in relentless proof-texting, cheap shots against “flaccid church guys,” and obsessive branding of non-Reformed theologians as heretics. Yet even so, they bravely follow Christ in his descent to hell to preach to those who are held captive by sin and death. Despite their faults, the authors take their stand at the foot of the cross as witnesses to the power of the gospel in a dark, despairing world.”
Tales of Christian Tailgaters
A little tale or parable from Ben Witherington.
Earth Hour Pictures
You don’t have to have celebrated Earth Hour to enjoy this pictures of various public locations going dark. Be sure to click the photos…
Pupils Will be Taught to Twitter
The fun in this article is in the sidebar where they have condensed many subjects into Twitter format (i.e. human reproduction or World War II in 140 characters or less).
Deal of the Day: Wii Games
Amazon is offering various Wii games at a steep discount today.
March 30, 2009
Al Gore’s Earth Hour
“President of the Tennessee Center For Policy Research Drew Johnson takes a Saturday drive by Al Gore’s during the time most environmentalists went dark. … The kicker, though, were the dozen or so floodlights grandly highlighting several trees and illuminating the driveway entrance of Gore’s mansion.”
Shaun Groves on Life in the Speck
“On your first day on the other side of the grave, do you think you’ll look back on this life and be flooded with gratitude for hours spent watching episodes of American Idol and Lost? Will you wish you’d done more of that? Do you think you’ll look back fondly on the effort and money spent remodeling the kitchen? Will you wish you’d had a nicer home?…”
Challies’ Path to Family
That’s the title of an interview Aileen and I completed with Steve and Candice Watters who interviewed us on starting our family.
Totally Looks Like
I got a laugh from this.
Deal of the Day: Reformed Expository Commentaries
Monergism Books is offering a 50% discount on all of the books in the Reformed Expository Commentaries series. This is a limited time offer, while supplies last. One each per customer.” The 50% discount applies to any of the 10 titles. This is a great time to get started on your collection of this set!
March 27, 2009
Facebook Faceoff
“I couldn’t help but wonder what he was thinking as he pulled out his iPhone and took advantage of a new Facebook application — right in the middle of the sermon. It was then that I realized the narcissistic machine that is Facebook.”
Toronto Pastors Conference
Today is the last day to register for the Toronto Pastors Conference at earlybird pricing. Come join us as we hear Mark Dever and Matt Schmucker teach about the local church.
Does Satan Exist?
You’ve probably heard by now that Mark Driscoll participated in a televised debate on this question. You can watch the debate online. Be sure to check out Deepak Chopra’s totally bling glasses.
ESV Bible Widget
Crossway has put together an ESV dashboard widget for the Mac OS X users.
9 Wackiest Tax Deductions
Here are a few not to try this year. “As audacious as these stories might be, rest assured that the Internal Revenue Service is not amused when taxpayers fail to file, misfile, underreport income or otherwise attempt to avoid taxes.”
How to Understand Huge Numbers
“As Obama proposes a $1,000,000,000,000 rescue plan, Marcus du Sautoy offers a handy guide to the mind-bogglingly big numbers being bandied about.”
The Ears of the Deaf
The discussion for the article I wrote earlier this week has become very interesting in its discussion of deaf ministry. If that is of any interest to you, be sure to read some of the comments.
March 26, 2009
Worship Planning Ideas from Calvin
“People often come to me and ask, ‘How can we improve or renew our worship?’ My response is that we should restore the central things and practice them robustly, using contemporary forms rooted in the practices of sixteenth century pastor and liturgical reformer, John Calvin. Even though Calvin is most widely known as a systematizer…and exegete…his leadership in liturgical renewal should not be ignored in the twenty-first century.”
“Where The Wild Things Are” Trailer
A childhood favorite gets the movie treatment.
Obama’s Teleprompter’s Blog
This is one of the hottest new blogs out there—written by TOTUS, President’s Obama’s teleprompter. It offers “Reflections from the hard drive of the machine that enables the voice of the Leader of the Free World.”
2009: A Book Banning Odyssey
Ed Driscoll looks at the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act and its effects on books published prior to 1984 (the guy is a bit on the odd side but most of his information is good). Bookshop Blog has information as well.
March 25, 2009
Tougher Sexting Laws
This article discusses new laws against cyberbullying. Some interesting facts: “A national study by the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy revealed that 1 in 5 teen girls or 22 percent say they have electronically sent or posted nude or semi-nude images online of themselves.” and “Some area school resource officers and principals estimate that at least half of the students have an inappropriate photo on their cell phone.”
Church Planting in WSJ
Wall Street Journal has an article about church planting. Rather an interesting place to read such an article, I thought…
Ligonier National Conference Video
You can watch the sessions from the recent conference which dealt with the topic of “The Holiness of God.” There were some very, very good sessions and they are well worth watching.
The Real Population Threat
Dr. Mohler: “For well over a century, many prophets of doom have predicted world overpopulation would lead to ecological disaster, famine, poverty and other woes. As Philip Longman points out in the March 24, 2009 edition of USA Today, the world’s population is expected to hit 7 billion by 2012, up from the 6 billion mark set in 1999. So, is overpopulation a real threat? Not hardly.”
March 24, 2009
Sermon Jams: Volume 5
1031 Sermon Jams has released a new volume of their sermon jams. You are free to download, burn and distribute the files. DD)
Writers’ Rooms
Here is a neat photo essay (with an audio track by the photographer) sharing photographs of various writers’ rooms. They range from the stark to the cluttered and everything in between.
Free Audio Books from Jim Elliff
Audio versions of Jim Elliff’s books Pursuing God and Wasted Faith are available for free download at his web site.
Solving Sudoku Mathematically
I’m glad to hear that someone has found a way of solving Sudoku. Now maybe people can stop cluttering magazines with it…
How Publishing Shapes Us
Andy Le Peau has a short but good article on how publishing shapes us. “What does publishing make possible and impossible? Famously, it made the Reformation possible—or at least possible to spread more quickly and widely. It makes the dissemination of information and opinion to great swaths of the population possible. This may be obvious. What is perhaps less obvious is what publishing makes impossible or very difficult.”
Connecting Church and Home
“This weekend, Brentwood Baptist Church hosted a conference on family ministry titled Connecting Church and Home. The speakers were mainly connected with Southern Baptist churches but their purpose will be shared by all Christians.” Though I haven’t read through (or listened to) these talks yet, they come highly recommended.
March 23, 2009
One Trillion Dollars
You’ve probably seen this already; I have too. But I just can’t get over it, so thought I’d post it so you can see it again.
The Sin of Infant Baptism
Mark Dever has stepped up to defend his view that infant baptism is sinful. I’m not sure why this is controversial, but it seems to be!
Getting Good Digital Audio of Sermons
This article offers some useful pointers for getting good digital audio recordings of sermons.
Advance 09
This conference looks like it’s going to be a good one (or, at least, one would assume so from the topic and the list of speakers).

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