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Tim Challies

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May 27, 2009
A Life of Humility
Doug Nichols, founder and international director emeritus of Action International Ministries, shares a great little story from his life (and the life of Francis Schaeffer).
50 Factors Within Nations that Determine Their Wealth or Poverty
This looks like a very interesting series. It was taught by Dr. Wayne Grudem over four weeks at Scottsdale Bible Church. (HT:Boomer)
Spanking Stories
Here’s a post by Douglas Wilson in which he reflects on all the spanking stories he has heard. “Godly discipline, spanking included, is an act of love. Children who are disciplined appropriately know that they are being loved, and they know that the world is a secure place. Boundaries exist, and those boundaries are defended by parents who love the boundaries, just as they love their children.” (Is it just me or does the color scheme of that site do funny things to the eyes?)
Study Scripture at Home with Ligonier Academy
“The Ligonier Academy Certificate tracks in Biblical Studies are structured programs intended to help believers come to a better understanding of the content and message of Scripture. A solid grasp of the content of the Bible is absolutely crucial for our spiritual growth and daily life. Ligonier Academy offers three different Certificates in Biblical Studies…”
NEXT Resources
You can now download the addresses from this year’s NEXT Conference. Speakers include Joshua Harris, Sinclair Ferguson, CJ Mahaney, D.A. Carson and Kevin DeYoung.
Newsflash: Modern Women Are Unhappy
Owen Strachan: “New York Times columnist Ross Douthat has just penned a provocative piece called “Liberated and Unhappy” that briefly analyzes a new study entitled “The Paradox of Declining Female Happiness” by economists Betsey Stevenson and Justin Wolfers.” Owen writes about the study and its implications.
Deal of the Day: Matthias Media
Matthias Media is offering a 33% discount on all of their Guidebooks for Life. There are some great resources there!
May 26, 2009
Memorial Day 2009
Boston.com has another one of their great photo essays, this one commemorating Memorial Day 2009.
A Mother’s Heart for Two Brave Children
A year after the tragic death of Maria Chapman, her mother, Mary Beth Chapman, reflects on all that the last year has brought.
Ida: Humankind’s Earliest Ancestor! (Not Really)
TIME Magazine offers some perspective on Ida (though they do so from an evolutionary perspective). “All of which renders the press release touting a ‘revolutionary scientific find that will change everything’ absolutely true — as long as by ‘everything,’ you mean ‘whether the branch of the primate family that includes monkeys, apes and humans comes from the suborder strepsirrhinae or the suborder haplorrhinae,’ according to the PLoS One paper. And by ‘change,’ you mean ‘adds information that may or may not help settle the question, but whose implications won’t be known for a long time in any case.’”
Two Inches of Providence
John Ensor, writing in WORLD, offers a real-life perspective on providence. “Baby Jack, our 3-month-old grandson, was rocking away peacefully when terror struck. Our daughter-in-law thought a tornado was hitting them. What she really heard was a multi-ton, mighty tall oak tree cracking and crashing onto their old, wooden house, directly and immediately above baby Jack.”
Amusing Ourselves to Death
Stuart McMillen has written up a comic of sorts that conveys the introductory chapter to Neil Postman’s Amusing Ourselves to Death (HT).
Humility: The Heart of Righteousness
Doug Groothuis offers a good post on the always-relevant subject of humility.
May 25, 2009
Why Memorial Day Is Worth Remembering
Rev.Kev. tells us why Memorial Day is worth remembering.
The Climate-Industrial Complex
WSJ: “Some business leaders are cozying up with politicians and scientists to demand swift, drastic action on global warming. This is a new twist on a very old practice: companies using public policy to line their own pockets. The tight relationship between the groups echoes the relationship among weapons makers, researchers and the U.S. military during the Cold War.”
Documentary Probes Canadian Evangelism
I know Americans are accustomed to this kind of thing, but this is quite rare for Canada: a documentary that looks to Canadian evangelicalism. Unfortunately, it looks like he looked in most of the wrong places. “Evangelicals believe they have a duty to spread the gospel,” says Newman. “In the U.S., the evangelical strain has been fused with the fundamentalist strain; that isn’t true here. The evangelical movement links into many different strains in Canada. We’re a more secular country.”
De’tat’ched Attitude
Here’s an interesting repercussion of the economic downturn. “Dermatologists across the city are reporting a boom in tattoo laser removals, as body-art fanatics fretting over their professional image rush to erase their inky mistakes. ‘People can’t afford to handicap themselves be cause of a tattoo in a tight job market,’ said Dr. Jeffrey Rand, founder of the Tattoo Removal Center in Midtown. “We’re seeing a huge surge right now in people getting rid of their tattoos.”
Basics Conference Audio/Video
Audio and video of the recent Basics Conference is now available for free online. It includes both keynotes and breakouts.
India’s Massive General Election
This fascinating photo essay shares images from India’s recent general election. “An estimated 714 million voters (from a population of 1.2 billion) were eligible to cast their vote in one of five separate phases at over 800,000 polling stations, starting on April 16th. Logistically difficult, massive in scale, and opposed by various rebel groups, separatists and protestors, the elections still managed to be held with minimal disruption, with an average voter turnout of greater than 56%.”
Snuggie Review
Consumerist offers a light-hearted review of the infomerical / pop culture phenomenon the Snuggie (the blanket with sleeves).
Deal of the Day: The Cross Centered Life
Registered customers of Monergism Books will receive a 50% discount on C.J. Mahaney’s The Cross Centered Life. In order to receive discount please use coupon code “crosscentered” at checkout. Limit 1 per customer. This week only.
May 22, 2009
Dan Brown’s America
An interesting Op-Ed from the NY Times. “It isn’t just that he knows how to keep the pages turning. That’s what it takes to sell a million novels. But if you want to sell a 100 million, you need to preach as well as entertain — to present a fiction that can be read as fact, and that promises to unlock the secrets of history, the universe and God along the way.”
An Interview with Max McLean
JT interviews Max McLean, focusing on his new one-man show which is simply a presentation of the Gospel of Mark.
God Made This Man Rich
Canada’s The Globe and Mail pens an article about William Young. “Young thinks a big part of the novel’s appeal derives from it not being explicitly Christian. There’s little or no Scripture in it. The novel, to Young’s mind, ‘has given to people a language to have a conversation about God, evil, suffering and healing. … a language they didn’t have before because all the language before has been very religious, loaded with religious land mines and everything else.’”
A Divine and Supernatural Light
This blog is dedicated to the life, works and legacy of Jonathan Edwards. Sounds like a good bookmark for those who love Edwards…
May 21, 2009
Christians Suffer in the Delivery Room
Chris Brauns offers a reflection on suffering. “Would you not agree that there is a fundamental difference between pain in the cancer ward and agony in the delivery room? One is suffering that brings life; the other is that of death.”
Compassion Today
The current edition of Compassion Today has a feature article I wrote reflecting on my time with Compassion in Dominican Republic. It offers a bit of a round-up of my thoughts a few months after returning home.
Great Right North
I found this an interesting article: “Reports last week that the recession is draining Social Security and Medicare funds were just one more reminder that the United States needs to fix its finances. For inspiration, why not look to Canada? Long derided by American conservatives as “socialist” and praised by the left for its generous government spending, Canada is casting off those stereotypes. Over the past few years, while U.S. politicians presided over huge increases in spending and debt, the Canadian government tightened its belt, slashed tax rates and balanced budgets.”
John Calvin Bobblehead
You know you want one…
The High Cost of Poverty
This article from the Washington Post does a great job of showing that you have to be rich to be poor. “Put it another way: The poorer you are, the more things cost. More in money, time, hassle, exhaustion, menace. This is a fact of life that reality television and magazines don’t often explain.”
Facebook: Connecting Us in Life and Death
What happens to your Facebook account when you die? And if Facebook is so great a part of people’s lives, how does it factor into their deaths? Here is an article that answers some of the questions.
Deal of the Day: New Park Street Pulpit
You can save 80% on Spurgeon’s New Park Street Pulpit 3-Volume set. “A dynamic collection of classic sermons from the Prince of Preachers! Written in 1854 just five years after his conversion, these memorable messages reflect Spurgeon’s considerable gifts: word pictures, pointed applications, concern for people, and a heart for God. Preachers will value these early messages as excellent models, and laypeople will enjoy them as devotional reading. Three hardcovers.”
May 20, 2009
It’s Over. Evolution Wins
Or that’s what we’re now supposed to believe. “The search for a direct connection between humans and the rest of the animal kingdom has taken 200 years - but it was presented to the world today at a special news conference in New York. The discovery of the 95%-complete ‘lemur monkey’ - dubbed Ida - is described by experts as the ‘eighth wonder of the world.’”
36 Hours in Toronto
It’s always interesting to read an outsider’s perspective on your city. Here the NY Times spends 36 hours in Toronto.
Kids, baseball, neighbors — and honesty
“Baseball is a distinctly American sport. It speaks the universal language of our nation. On the surface, it may appear to be just some kids playing catch, but on a deeper level baseball is hard work, patience, determination, courage and focus. In the end, baseball is about character in community. ”
The Praise Factory
The Praise Factory is a site run by Connie Dever (Mark Dever’s wife). “A resource for affordable, flexible, quality Christian curriculum for pre-school and elementary age children. Browse the website for curriculum, music and helpful articles for teachers and families.”
May 19, 2009
March for Life Coverage
“Let me get this straight: 5,000 Tamils block a few lanes of Toronto traffic and it’s all over the news. Heck, a mere 50 Tamils demonstrate in front of the American Consulate in Calgary and we hear about it. But when 12,000 people showed up Thursday on Parliament Hill to demonstrate their support for life from conception to natural death — something that affects us all — it’s not worth a picture? Twenty seconds of airtime? A paragraph at the bottom of Page J20?”
Gossip
Ray Ortlund: “What is gossip? It is not necessarily false information. Slander is false. Gossip might include true information, and maybe that’s why gossip doesn’t always feel sinful. What makes it sin is, first and foremost, that God says it’s sin…”
The Quiet Place
6YearMed on what parents do for their sick children. “While she’s still here, he sets his alarm every two hours to reposition her in the bed, provides her medications through a feeding tube and diligently records the hundreds of seizures, each of which rock the bed and break his heart. And those on the outside wonder why, and how? We want it to be over because it seems to hard–so time consuming and fruitless.”
10 Questions for Pastors’ Wives
Titus2Talk is talking to pastors’ wives. “The aim of this is to inspire and encourage women who are married to a pastor or to a seminary student. Also we want to give other women an insight into the challenges that pastors’ wives face so we can better encourage and pray for those in leadership.”
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)

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