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May 08, 2012

Honor the Vanilla Men - Carl Truemen on the apostle Paul: “What he advocates is the appointment of rather bland, non-descript, respectable men as elders.  These vanilla men, basically competent and with no skeletons in the cupboard, are to be entrusted with keeping the church on the straight and narrow.”

One Remarkable Marriage - This is a powerful video that you just need to watch. John Piper says, “I tremble with the glad responsibility of introducing you to Ian & Larissa Murphy in this video. Tremble, because it is their story and so personal. So delicate. So easily abused. So unfinished. Glad, because Christ is exalted over all things.”

Leave it to the Imagination - This article looks at stories and fiction and talks about some of the things that are best left to the imagination.

Supermoon - The Big Picture has a gallery of amazing photos of the recent supermoon. Guess who forgot to go outside that night? Sigh.

Frequent Fliers - If you’ve got the time and interest, this is an interesting article about American Airlines’ ill-advised effort to sell lifetime passes.

Mothers Day and the Infertile - Russell Moore: “Mother’s Day is a particularly sensitive time in many congregations, and pastors and church leaders often don’t even know it. This is true even in congregations that don’t focus the entire service around the event as if it were a feast day on the church’s liturgical calendar. Infertile women, and often their husbands, are still often grieving in the shadows.”

As to breach of unity, nothing has ever more largely promoted the union of the true than the break with the false. —C.H. Spurgeon

May 07, 2012

Things Introverts Dread in Church - I can identify with all of these, though I’ve learned to enjoy at least a couple of them. This is a list of The Top 5 Things Introverts Dread about Church (written so extroverts may understand).

Canada Stops Making Cents - We’re so progressive up here in Canada. We’ve finally done what everyone’s been talking about and have gotten rid of the penny.

Terminology for the Web - This article looks at the way the web is changing our language and adding to our lexicon. And speaking of new words, here are some you may like to add to your vocabulary. They come courtesy of the new volume of the Dictionary of American Regional English.

Gospel Coalition Ontario - A Gospel Coalition conference is coming to Ontario at the end of the month. For those interested, they are now offering day passes as well as conference passes.

Avoid Burnout - David has a really helpful infographic that shares six simple ways to avoid burnout.

History in 15 Cars - Here’s the history of America in fifteen cars.

Aren’t You Being Intolerant? - How can we answer people when they say that we are intolerant? Greg Koukl provides a useful answer.

In Christ Jesus heaven meets earth and earth ascends to heaven. —Henry Law

May 05, 2012

You Belong to Christ - I appreciate what Luma gets at in this article about motherhood. “I am NOT anti-motherhood, I am for Christ-centered motherhood! It is because I have lived at the two extremes of neglecting family, and making family my idol, that I can say some of the hard things I’m going to say. God willing with a gracious spirit speaking the truth in love.”

The Campus Tsunami - “What happened to the newspaper and magazine business is about to happen to higher education: a rescrambling around the Web.”

Read More Fiction - Here, from The Art of Manliness, is an explanation of why men ought to read more fiction. I don’t know that I buy all of it, but there are some good points there.

How’s Your Mongolian? - This is an interesting post that introduces quite a unique blog.

Most Read Books - Here’s an infographic displaying the top ten most read books in the world over the last 50 years.

Gritty NYC - “Almost a million images of New York and its municipal operations have been made public for the first time on the internet. The city’s Department of Records officially announced the debut of the photo database. Here are a few highlights.”

Will - This is a powerful little movie. It is beautifully animated as well.

A world without God is a world without fear, without law, without order, without hope. —C.H. Spurgeon

May 04, 2012

Muscular Christianity - Michael Horton has penned a good and interesting article in which he takes issue with the idea that Christianity needs to be masculine and muscular. It’s a bit dense and the font is pretty small, but make your way through it anyway!

The Downside of Cohabitation - It could be that the most important thing about this article is that it is from the New York Times. “Couples who cohabit before marriage (and especially before an engagement or an otherwise clear commitment) tend to be less satisfied with their marriages — and more likely to divorce — than couples who do not. These negative outcomes are called the cohabitation effect.”

Student Reading - Truth for Life has put together a helpful list of recommended reading for students. Also, if you make a donation to TFL, you can receive a copy of Don’t Call It a Comeback, a book I contributed to.

Jon Will’s Gift - This is a sweet and powerful article from the Washington Post. “When Jonathan Frederick Will was born 40 years ago — on May 4, 1972, his father’s 31st birthday — the life expectancy for people with Down syndrome was about 20 years. That is understandable.” (HT)

The Larger Catechism - Danny Hyde is beginning a blog series on the Westminster Larger Catechism. It ought to be an interesting series.

The Bible, The Whole Bible - Ligonier Ministries did an interview with Eric Alexander that is well worth the read. He talks about preaching, the call to ministry, how Christians can prepare themselves for the Lord’s Day, and so on. While on the subject of Ligonier, you may want to check out their $5 Friday deals since there are some good ones this week.

Nobody has understood Christianity who does not understand the word ‘justified.’ —John Stott

May 03, 2012

Lloyd-Jones on Prophecy - Martyn Lloyd-Jones is often used as an example of an advocate of continuationist theology, but here is an article that argues against it. “Although charismatics and Pentecostals have both claimed him as an advocate of their views, a careful reading of ML-J establishes that they have misunderstood him.”

A Wife’s Submission Is Not - This is a helpful look at what the Bible does not mean when it instructs a woman to submit to her husband’s leadership.

The Love of the Father - R.W. Glenn pens a poignant look at his own suffering, the suffering of his son, and the love of a father.

Rain for Roots - Here’s an album I’m looking forward to. It combines the music of artists like Sandra McCracken with songs penned by Sally Lloyd-Jones, who wrote The Jesus Storybook Bible. It releases in mid-May.

Pray for Revival - This is good for me to ponder in light of all I’ve been saying about envy: “What if you spent years faithfully and earnestly praying for revival to come to your community, and then one day, seemingly out of the blue, God dramatically answered your prayers?” And what if this happened at someone else’s church?

Space Photo of the Day - Further proof that God is the ultimate artist.

Pray the Scriptures - Scotty Smith has an article in the current edition of Tabletalk that talks about the value and the practice of praying the Scriptures.

God will either give you what you ask, or something far better. —Robert Murray M’Cheyne

May 02, 2012

Called to Confess - I really enjoyed this article, written by Aileen’s best friend Stacey. She relates an experience she had, then looks at my envy articles, and takes it from there. “I sat down at the computer last night to write a blog post. Nothing came to me. Well, nothing in the form of a blog post anyway. Something else came, though. It crept in slowly, cautiously, masked and disguised as something far less ugly than what was actually hidden beneath.”

When Serpents Bite Granny - I’m a recent subscriber to this blog, but have been enjoying it quite a bit. Here’s a good post that borrows from John Newton: “Perhaps the most offensive claim of the gospel is that a hate-filled cannibalistic child molester finds the same redemption and has an equal status in the eyes of God as your dear old church lovin’, bake-sale havin’, baby burpin’ granny.”

Megachurch as the New Liberalism - This is a long but important article from Al Mohler. He looks at megachurches, and one megachurch pastor in particular, and shows how these churches play a crucial role in promoting (or destroying) Christian theology.

Why Am I Not Enough? - This article takes on a common question that comes when a wife finds that her husband has been looking at pornography—Why am I not enough for him?

Machine Politics - If you’re interested in working your way through a longform article, this one is really interesting (though you’ll have to put up with some bad language). It deals with one of the world’s foremost hackers.

Why Don’t Christians Care That They Sin? - Alistair Begg and R.C. Sproul answer this question at a Ligonier Ministries National Conference Q&A

There is no attribute of God more comforting to his children than the doctrine of divine sovereignty. —C.H. Spurgeon

May 01, 2012

Audio Books - Crossway has put several audiobooks on sale. I’m tempted to get a copy of Jonathan Aitken’s life of John Newton, even though I’ve already read it.

Free from ChristianAudio - While on the subject of audiobooks, this month’s free audiobook from ChristianAudio is Resolving Everyday Conflict by Ken Sande.

The Godhood of God - The free book of the month from Logos is A.W. Pink’s The Godhood of God.

Kindle Deals - Every month Amazon puts a selection of Kindle deals on sale. You can check out the list for May at the link.

Fighting the Unholy Trinity - Wisdom from J.C. Ryle: “The principal fight of the Christian is with the world, the flesh, and the devil. This is their never-dying foes. These are the three chief enemies against whom they must wage war. Unless they get the victory over these three, all other victories are useless and vain.”

TSA Infographic - Here’s an infographic about the history, budget and effectiveness of the TSA.

Young Women in Chechnya - The Big Picture has a fascinating photo collection “documenting the lives of young Chechen women as they come of age in the aftermath of war. She writes, “For young women in Chechnya the most innocent acts could mean breaking the law. A Chechen girl caught smoking is cause for arrest; while rumors of a couple engaging in pre-martial relations can result in her killing. The few girls who dare to rebel become targets in the eyes of Chechen authorities.”

Tablets - “E-book consumers’ preference for tablets is accelerating rapidly as dedicated e-readers drop in popularity, according to the Book Industry Study Group (BISG)’s closely watched Consumer Attitudes Toward E-Book Reading survey.”

The right manner of growth is to grow less in one’s own eyes. —Thomas Watson

April 30, 2012

Suffering Is a Gift - I found this excellent article both encouraging and challenging. “In the last number of years, especially as a Christian, even though I ‘knew’ in the back of my mind that none of us is guaranteed a long life, I didn’t think much about dying young. But, when I was diagnosed with Acute Leukemia in December, it only took a day for me to accept that very real possibility.”

On Writing a Book on Lin - Ted Kluck reflects on writing a book about Jeremy Lin (Do you remember Jeremy Lin?).

Racism and George Zimmerman - Thomas Sowell brings out some important points here. “An amazing proportion of the media has given us a painful demonstration of the thinking — and lack of thinking — that prevailed back in the days of the old Jim Crow South, where complexion counted more than facts in determining how people were treated.”

On Watching Bad Movies - I’m glad that there are people out there who watch movies and tell us which ones the rest of us shouldn’t see. One of those people writes about how he can do this.

Nature - There is some amazing nature photography on display in this gallery.

Whither the Seminary Model - There are interesting discussions these days about the future of the seminary model of training pastors. Here William Evans offers some thoughts on an article posted last week at The Gospel Coalition. This is a discussion worth having!

The Digital Gender Divide - “In a report released this morning, Nielsen found that women, overall, are significantly more likely to engage with social media than men.” There are some interesting implications to this, some of what are brought out in the article.

As for beauty, one of its most potent charms lies in its modest unconsciousness; it is greatly marred when accompanied by vanity. —C.H. Spurgeon