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Tim Challies

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A La Carte

May 18, 2009
Taking Chance
This is a film I thoroughly enjoyed. It has just become available for sale through Amazon. “The made-for-HBO Taking Chance is based on perhaps the single most moving artifact to come out of the Second Gulf War, Lt. Col. Mike Strobl’s [played by Kevin Bacon] first-person narrative of his voluntary mission escorting the body of a fellow Marine killed in Iraq.”
New Word Alive
New Word Alive has lots of great media available, some for free and some for a small fee. Among the free stuff is an interview with D.A. Carson.
High-Definition Versus Regular Television
This about says it all.
Nancy Leigh DeMoss on Carrie Prejean
“Carrie has made a strong public profession of her faith in Christ. As Christians, we are called to live as redeemed men and women and to reflect to the world the beauty and holiness of God. I’m not in a position to judge Carrie’s motives or her heart. But while I applaud her courage, I also believe some of her choices and public actions, past and present, are representative of many women who consider themselves Christians, but who lack clear biblical thinking and conviction on such matters as virtue, womanhood, beauty, modesty, and discretion.”
Reality Television’s Final Frontier
This is a thought-provoking article about Farrah Fawcett’s two-hour documentary “Farrah’s Story.” ” Fawcett’s story, of course, is real, and it will be interesting to see how many Americans watched, and if the nation’s attitudes towards death - really the last taboo - begin to change. Maybe death will be discussed more openly, or maybe most people will decide that it’s too ghoulish, too voyeuristic, to watch a deathbed goodbye, to watch an American icon of youth and beauty waste away.”
Interview with Robert Godfrey
Mike Dewalt interviews Dr. Robert Godfrey on his new biography of John Calvin.
Deal of the Day: Calvin’s Institutes
Monergism Books is offering Calvin’s Institutes 2 volume set at 50% off retail for one day only (Monday). You must use the following coupon at checkout institutes0509 to receive the discount, which is only valid for one set per customer. For the coupon to work customers will have to register.
May 15, 2009
Clayton’s Story
Z shares a powerful little video that tells the story of Clayton McDonald.
The Kingdom, the Power, and the Glory
Dr. Mohler shares his commencement address and charge to graduates of The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, delivered May 15, 2009. “And here, right before our eyes, we see hundreds of ministers of Christ, ready to receive diplomas and be granted their degrees. In just moments, these scholars of theology and the arts of ministry will receive their educational rewards, ‘with all the rights, privileges, and responsibilities, appertaining thereto.’ There is but one problem — not one of these ministers is qualified to enter this calling.”
Violence and Notre Dame Shakedown
“The protests against Notre Dame honoring of President Obama this coming Sunday at commencement are making local headlines. Protests help to sell papers, of course, and this one—Catholic students sitting out their own graduation ceremonies, and busloads of protesters coming to Notre Dame on Sunday—has all the markings of a good story.”
Beauty at Any Cost
Mary Kassian looks at the YWCA’s “Beauty at Any Cost” report. “The desire of women to look beautiful is not new. But according to YWCA Chief Executive, Dr. Lorraine Cole, what is new is the unrealistic standard of physical beauty which is relentlessly pushed on females, and the sheer extent to which women and girls are now willing to go to achieve this goal.”
May 14, 2009
What’s Next for The Gospel Coalition?
CT interviews D.A. Carson on The Gospel Coalition. “Our aim is not to keep the coalition as an end in itself. It’s a coalition of people for the sake of promoting the gospel. And if the gospel is so implanted in enough things that are taking it forward in all kinds of useful and happy ways, then we should morph into something else or stop as an organization.”
Thoughts for Christian Bloggers
Matt Heerema, whom I enjoyed meeting at The Gospel Coalition, has written an article that contains some useful thoughts for Christian bloggers.
Death Is Not Dying
“After four and a half years of vigilantly fighting breast cancer, Rachel Barkey, a 37-year-old wife and mother of two was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Rachel’s story is not unlike what thousands of women around the world have experienced. A diagnosis that changes a woman’s life and inevitably takes from her what we consider to be most precious.” (HT:Josh Harris)
May 12, 2009
60 Years in an Iron Lung
“Martha Mason passed away last week at the age of 71 after spending 60 years living inside an iron lung. Mason was paralyzed from the neck down due to a childhood case of polio and was one of about 30 Americans left who live full time in iron lungs. There are no documented cases of anyone living in an iron lung for as long as Mason.”
A Fetus or a Baby?
Here is an interesting article which shows how unbelievable, how ungodly, the pro-choice debate really is.
Why Mother’s Day is a Bad Idea
Dr. Mohler takes this one on and includes an interesting history of the occasion. “Mother’s Day is a bad idea because it subverts the reality of faithful mothering and robs faithful mothers of their true glory. Mothers deserving of honor are handed cards and taken to lunch, when songs of praise should instead be offered to the glory of God.”
John Piper @ The Basics
You can hear the first two messages from John Piper at the Basics Conference. The first is a breakout session followed by an open Q&A. The second is a keynote address.
Deal of the Day: The Minority Report
Ligonier is offering a good discount on Carl Trueman’s The Minority Report. “Carl Trueman presents a collection of essays on a wide-range of subjects, including Adolf Eichman, the iPod, Roger Beckwith, the Blues, Watership Down, American Idol, Nietzsche, Zen-Calvinism, and Augustine. His goal is to force readers to think about what they believe, how they behave, and why. With wit and wisdom, Trueman topples the idols of contemporary pop-evangelicalism and dares us to reflect on matters many of us would rather not.”
May 11, 2009
A Soldier’s Miracle
CBS News brings an interesting story of a rather unlikely recovery. “Lt. Brian Brennan is a walking, talking miracle. There are no other words for it. One year ago today, he lost both his legs to a roadside bomb in Afghanistan, and now his mother is watching him learn to run all over again…”
Just Begin to Say
Ray Ortlund quoting Martyn Lloyd-Jones: “Would you like to be rid of this spiritual depression? The first thing you have to do is to say farewell now once and forever to your past… . Never look back at your sins again. Say, ‘It is finished, it is covered by the Blood of Christ.’ That is your first step…”
Why Your Baby’s Name Will Sound Like Everyone Else’s
I love articles like this one. “mma was the most popular baby girl name of 2008, the Social Security Administration announced today, supplanting Emily, which had held the slot for the past 12 years. Both names, though, reflect a much deeper and largely unnoticed naming trend, which has played out over decades.”
Babies on Hold
“Baby-making is a business best left to a booming economy. The full impact won’t be known for months, but there are signs the recession has prospective parents putting off plans to start, or expand, their families…”
Deal of the Day: Puritan Paperback Bundle
For one day only, Monergism Books is offering Banner of Truth’s complete Puritan Paperback Bundle (37 books) for 50% off.
May 08, 2009
Hand of Hope Boy
“Do you remember the famous photograph of the baby reaching out of the womb and grasping the doctor’s finger? That baby is now 9-year-old Samuel Armas. The photo has been spread around the world and even cited during congressional debates on the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act, but for Samuel it has personal significance…”
Social Media Adoption
“For all the talk about social media use and growth over the last several years, it’s always good to get a look at the numbers to see how far it’s come. A recent report by Harris Interactive has some interesting stats about the adoption of social networking sites Facebook and MySpace as well as the number of Americans who are on Twitter.”
The Alzheimer’s Project
From Carolyn McCulley: “HBO is debuting a four-part documentary series on Alzheimer’s starting Sunday evening, May 10. … I think it’s an appropriate subject for us all to consider as we honor those who have made such an investment in us. Alzheimer’s is said to be the second most-feared disease, after cancer. I don’t doubt that statistic. I know I have prayed about it, asking the Lord to spare me in my future, and I’m sure I’m not alone in that prayer. ”
May 07, 2009
Are Christians Overemphasizing Cultural Renewal?
Following my review of Unfashionable Christianity Today asks “a question for Christian leaders (whether in the church or elsewhere): have you found the recent Christian emphasis on “building for the kingdom” and cultural renewal to detract from evangelism? Or is it actually helping to “reach souls”?”
Shepherd Press Newsletter
Shepherd Press offers a free weekly newsletter you may like to subscribe to. “Each issue contains an article that is of importance to you and your family. Usually you will find articles about current news events as well as other pertinent issues that matter to you and your family. The idea is to show the Bible’s relevancy for every area of life, and then further, to help you talk with your children about these issues.”
Girls Gone Wise
Girls Gone Wise is a new site headed up by Mary Kassian: an award winning author, internationally renowned speaker, and a distinguished professor at Southern Baptist Seminary. (HT:CM)
Piper on Physical Protection
From This Momentary Marriage: “If there is a sound downstairs during the night and it might be a burglar, you don’t say to her, ‘This is an egalitarian marriage, so it’s your turn to go check it out. I went last time.’ And I mean that-even if your wife has a black belt in karate. After you’ve tried to deter him, she may finish off the burglar with one good kick to the solar plexus. But you’d better be unconscious on the floor, or you’re no man.”
20 Minutes to Change Your Marriage
“I was sitting through a seminar the other night and the speaker, Davis Carman, made a statement that has had me think a lot. He said that there is a crucial 20 minutes of a man’s day that can really bless his wife and change his marriage.”
Adopted for Life
RHB is offering Adopted for Life, a new book from Russell Moore, at a significant discount. It is “A stirring call to Christian families and churches to be a people who care for orphans, not just in word, but in deed.”
May 06, 2009
Biblical Productivity Series
C.J. Mahaney’s “Biblical Productivity” series is now available as a single PDF file if you’d like to download and read the whole thing.
Free Downloads from Truth for Life
Alistair Begg: “In conjunction with [The Basicss] conference, we will be announcing the latest venture from Truth For Life. On May 11, 2009, we are making our archives of downloadable MP3 messages available for free. Let me encourage you to take immediate advantage of this and also to make it as widely known as you possibly can. This plan is in keeping not only with our stated purpose, but also with the expressed desire of the apostles to make every effort to proclaim the Gospel.”
Who is Coming to America?
This infographic is a look at the 20 countries from which the most people came to America in 2008, how many immigrants already had family there, and how many received asylum when they arrived on its shores.
Complacent Repentance
From Burk Parsons: “The church at the beginning of the twenty-first century is not eager to repent because we are not eager for the return of Christ. What is more, the church is not eager for the return of Christ because we are not eager to repent.”
May 05, 2009
Counter-Cultural Lips
Dr. Mohler writes about “True Lips Wait” and the move to hold off kissing until marriage. “There is no explicit biblical ban on premarital kissing, but any honest person knows that there are kisses than can only be considered sexual, naturally leading to the sex act itself. These young Christians are not afraid of their bodies, they are afraid of sinning against God and losing something precious to themselves as well.”
Saved Through Childbirth
Mounce takes a look at 1 Tim 2:15, undoubtedly one of the strangest and most difficult verses in the Bible.
Tweeting the Gospel
9Marks wants to know how you would tweet the gospel (using 140 characters or less). There are prizes for those who do the best job!
Obituary: The Emerging Church
Michael Patton writes an obituary for the Emerging Church and offers four reasons for its death. “They assumed that Evangelicals would listen and exit the building with them. But what happened was not unlike a disrespectful teenager who thought that he suddenly had it all figured out through a series of unadulterated epiphanies. He tugged on the shirt of his parents letting them know how much more he knew than them and he was blown off because of arrogance. ‘Tsk, tsk’ was the reply, ‘I remember when I thought I knew it all.’”
When Reporters Rise for the President
Yesterday lots of people were talking about a video showing how reporters rise for Obama when they did not for Bush. This article tells why. I post it simply because I bet the vast majority of us did not “believe the best” when we saw that video yesterday.
Deal of the Day: The Gagging of God
Ligonier Ministries is offering just about half off the price of D.A. Carson’s excellent The Gagging of God. “This clear, critically-acclaimed, scholarly response to that question affirms the deep need for the Gospel’s exclusive message in today’s increasingly pluralistic global community. In The Gagging of God, D.A. Carson offers an in-depth look at the big picture, shows how the many ramifications of pluralism are all parts of a whole, and then provides a systematic Christian response. ”
May 04, 2009
Spurgeon on What You Watch on TV
“Those who can look with delight or any degree of pleasure upon the sins of others are not holy. We know of some, who will not themselves perpetrate an unseemly jest, yet, if another does so, and there is a laugh excited upon some not over-decent remark, they laugh, and thus give sanction to the impropriety. If there is a low song sung in their hearing, which others applaud, though they cannot quite go the length of joining in the plaudits, still they secretly enjoy it; they betray a sort of gratification that they cannot disguise; they confess to a gusto that admires the wit while it cannot endorse the sentiment…”
Free Audio Book
ChristianAudio’s free download of the month is Foxe’s Book of Martyrs. Simply use the coupon code MAY2009 and the book is yours for the taking.
Saving the Planet With a Thesaurus
“The problem with global warming, some environmentalists believe, is ‘global warming.’” This article at the NY Times tells of some of the ways people are trying to sell global warming using some new and seemingly innocuous terms.
5 Distortions of the Gospel in Our Day
James MacDonald tells of five distortions of the gospel we tend to hear today. He closes with a warning: “Do you understand the implications of a distorted gospel? What horror to imagine many people thinking they are ready to meet God only to find out they never were because they believed a distorted gospel.”
The Expanded Bible
Here is a new translation of the Bible courtesy of Thomas Nelson. Of greater interest to me than the translation itself is the marketing they are using to try to raise awareness. They are relying on Twitter and other social media to do the job…
Undressing Pornography
This article, though it’s a few years old, is very useful when it comes to thinking properly about pornography.
Deal of the Day: A New Systematic Theology
Today (while supplies last) Monergism Books is offering A New Systematic Theology of the Christian Faith, 2nd ed. by Robert Reymond at a 50% discount.

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