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March 06, 2012

Sexual Sin in the Ministry - Writing for Desiring God, Harry Schaumburg addresses the sad prevalence of sexual sin in the ministry and pleads with pastors to get help. “For the last twenty years thousands men from across America struggling with sexual sin have come to our intensive counseling workshop. Over half were pastors and missionaries.”

Translating a Plural as a Singular - Mounce offers an interesting take on when it may be better to translate a plural as a singular. I’m not convinced, but it is helpful to think through these things as it shows how the translator’s job is not just to translate but to help understanding.

Fumblerules of Grammar - You’ve probably seen this before, but it’s always worth a read. “Late-1979, New York Times columnist William Safire compiled a list of ‘Fumblerules of Grammar’ — rules of writing, all of which are humorously self-contradictory — and published them in his popular column, ‘On Language’.”

Tongue Parasites - Don’t read this if you’ve got a weak stomach. “Whenever I give a talk about my book Parasite Rex, I try to gather together the creepiest images of parasites that I can. Every time, there’s one kind of parasite that summons an instant reaction: a mix of laughter, sucked-in breaths, and gasps of recognition. I speak, of course, of the parasites that eat your tongue.”

Out of a Far Country - A reader sent me the link to this powerful testimony of conversion. It comes from Christopher Yuan (who co-authored a biographical account titled Out of a Far Country).

Baptism and Church Membership - Jim Hamilton writes about the difficult and sometimes painful issue of extending (or not extending) church membership to those whose beliefs do not quite line up with a church’s statement of faith.

Nothing makes room for Satan more than wrath. —Thomas Manton

March 05, 2012

The Church in Canada - The Gospel Coalition is holding an event in Ontario. The Gospel Coalition has an interview with John Mahaffey, a member of the TGC council, on the state of the church in Canada.

Tornadoes - The home of the brother of Bobby Gilles (I have sometimes linked to his blog and music) was destroyed by one of those tornadoes and every member of his family injured. Bobby has the incredible details.

Fat, Sick and Dead - That’s what your desk job is doing to you—making you fat, sick and eventually dead.

Hidden in the Heart - This is a good and important article on hiding the Word in your heart and the difficulty that comes in this digital age.

Kirk Cameron and Piers Morgan - Kirk Cameron got himself into hot water by sharing his beliefs on the Piers Morgan show.

Strike Two - Another heartbreaking blog post from Africa. Reading blog posts like these makes me see how much I take for granted—things ilke a convenient, working health care system.

Tattoos for Lent - I’ve said it before: it’s impossible to lampoon Evangelicalism. “In a hip, artsy, area of Houston, a hip, artsy pastor is taking an unorthodox approach to Lent.Standing in front of his congregation at Ecclesia Church, a congregation he admits is different - more diverse, more urban - than many evangelical churches - Chris Seay encouraged them to do so something he said combines the ideas of sacrifice and devotion that mark the Lenten season, the 40-day lead up to Easter.”

Labor to keep the heart low in prosperity, and full of heavenly cheerfulness in adversity. —Jeremiah Burroughs

March 03, 2012

 

Matthew 18 and Public Critique - Rick Phillips offers four reasons that public critique does not involve Matthew 18. “This demand for personal contact prior to public criticism of published writings is becoming almost ubiquitous these days.  We even hear complaints that public critique violates Matthew 18 unless there has private dialogue first.  Let me offer the following four reasons why this is completely wrong.”

Tornadoes - Here is a photo gallery displaying the destruction of the recent outbreak of tornadoes.

Porn’s Central Lie - Doug Wilson: “I have long said that the principle problem with pornography is the didactic and catechetical aspect of it. Immodesty and licentiousness are of course sinful, but it is not remarked enough that porn is a sex ed curriculum put together by liars and incompetents.

I’m Being Followed - From The Atlantic: “I’m Being Followed: How Google—and 104 Other Companies—Are Tracking Me on the Web.”

Hand-Raising Tips - Tim Hawkins has some tips on hand-raising in church.

As to his deity Christ had no mother, and as to his humanity he had no father. —Robert Clarke

March 02, 2012

 

The Forgetting Pill - Consider a pill that could take away our worst memories. “In the very near future, the act of remembering will become a choice. … Psychiatry never cures anything—all we do is treat the worst symptoms. But this new treatment could be the first psychiatric cure ever.”

Meet Fred Luter - WSJ has an introduction to Fred Luter, the man who this spring will likely become the first black president of the Southern Baptist Convention.

On Controversy - “A minister, about to write an article criticizing a fellow minister for his lack of orthodoxy, wrote to John Newton of his intention. Newton replied as follows…”

Open Journalism - The Guardian describes what it means to pursue open journalism—one of the realities of life in this digital world.

Of what use is it to have many irons in the fire if the fire is going out? —Eric Roberts

March 01, 2012

5 Dangers of Fallible Prophecy - Nathan Busenitz looks at a recent debate between Wayne Grudem and Ian Hamilton and points out 5 dangers inherent in Wayne Grudem’s view of ongoing, fallible prophecy.

Elements in True Reformation - Did you know that J.I. Packer once wrote a book titled Hot Tub Religion? Anyway, Randy Alcorn quotes it here, giving an interesting and important excerpt on the elements of true reformation.

Poetry in Single Columns - Here’s something I’ve noticed before. J. Mark Bertrand offers an explanation as to how poetry is printed in English Bibles.

Percentage of the Population - “It’s often said that if you repeat something loud enough and long enough, people will begin to believe it. Such is the case with the claim that 10% of the population is gay. Though it’s commonly believed, the figure is rarely questioned.”

A Pastor’s Neglect - Brian Croft writes about a couple of the consequences for the pastor who neglects his family for the sake of ministry.

World Record - This is phenomenal. 

Take care of your life and the Lord will take care of your death. —George Whitefield

February 29, 2012

The Best Thing - What’s the best thing you can do for your pastor? “Compliment him on his outstanding, almost Charles Spurgeon-like sermon? Give money to the church? Give your time and skills to the church? Not heckle him? Admire him for his manly beard? While those are all wonderful things, they are not the best thing that you can do for you pastor.”

The Joy of Calvinism - Westminster Books is offering a one-week sale on the new book The Joy of Calvinism. There are a few other good deals there as well.

Translating Son of God - John Piper looks at some forty-year-old wisdom on how to translate “the Son of God,” a raging debate in the Muslim world.

Luther Insulter - Click the link and Martin Luther will insult you. You know you want to…

The Relief of No Career - “I have never had a ‘career.’ When my kids’ friends were asked what I ‘did,’ my kids would say, ‘She’s my mother.’ Unlike most women, I don’t have an identity to add to the designation of mother, Christian woman, or wife.”

An Ancient Tomb - “In an ancient tomb located below a modern condominium building in Jerusalem, archaeologists have found ossuaries — bone boxes for the dead — bearing engravings that could represent the earliest archaeological evidence of Christians ever found.”

All He Does Is Lin - Here’s a fun take on the Lin phenomenon.

Be careful how you spend your time: Spend your time in nothing which you know must be repented of. —Richard Baxter

February 28, 2012

Little Miss Red Shoes - A heart-wrenching article from the field. “Little Miss Red Shoes goes to school with her friends. She’s in second grade. She lives with her mother and an aunt. Her father left the family years ago, though she thinks she saw him sometime in the last year. Her mom is HIV positive on treatment, sells little bits of beans and corn for a living, and often turns to the local church for assistance.”

Theology Refresh - Theology Refresh is a helpful new series from Desiring God. You can watch or listen in as pastors and theologians address a particular issue with each episode. Remarkably, they even manage to keep it short!

How to Listen to a Sermon - Reformation21 has an interesting article from Philip Ryken who offers wisdom on how to listen to a sermon.

The Tsunami and the Cherry Blossom - This is really powerful.

The Gift of Discouragement - “Some people in the church seem to have the spiritual gift of discouragement.  It’s all that guy can do – discourage others. Truthfully, we are all ‘that guy’ far too often.” Here’s how to turn it around!

Rise O Buried Lord - This album from Redeemer Church of Knoxville is on sale until Easter. You can also listen to it here if you want to give it a try.

Making a Wrong Decision - Does God have a plan b for my life if I make a wrong decision?

The Christian’s task is to make the Lord Jesus visible, intelligible and desirable. —Len Jones

February 27, 2012

The Santorum Predicament - I enjoyed Dr. Mohler’s take on The Santorum Predicament. “Rick Santorum is still a long shot for the Republican nomination, but his candidacy and its coverage in the mainstream media tell us a great deal about the fate of conservative candidates and conservative convictions in the public square.”

Bethlehem Succession Plan - It’s interesting to read about Bethlehem Baptist Church’s succession plan for John Piper. It is an unusual process to have to go through—to seek to replace a preacher like John Piper (who intends to step down from his preaching role in the summer of 2014).

Praying During Sermon Prep - Here’s one for the pastor: a guide on how to pray during sermon preparation. It can also help the non-preacher know how to pray for the guy preparing the sermon!

And While Preparing to Lead Worship - Inspired by the previous article, Matt Boswell has come up with a list of 8 ways to pray while preparing to serve as a worship leader.

Evaluating Movies - There is no one way to evaluate movies that will always filter the good from the bad, so I’m always interested in hearing how others go about it. Here is Randy Alcorn’s take.

Our old man is crucified, but he is long at dying. —C.H. Spurgeon