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A La Carte

November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving to all my American friends and family. I sure wish I could be down there celebrating with you! Alas, it’s just a normal day here in Canada and I’ve got work to do. Be sure to check in tomorrow to take a look at all the Black Friday deals I’ve tracked down.

But for today, Amazon has put a lot of their Kindle devices on sale in a kind of pre-Black Friday sale. They are all at least $20 off. Kindle ($49); Kindle Fire HD 6 ($79); Kindle Paperwhite ($99); Kindle Fire HD 7 ($109). The book deals should come tomorrow.

A Lifestyle, Not a Holiday - “If it is true that all men exist—were made to glorify God—our gratitude failure is not simply a failure of manners, akin to forgetting to write a thank-you card for a gift. Instead it is like adultery, like murder, like cosmic rebellion.” While you’re on Ligonier’s site, you can get these free Thanksgiving messages from R.C. Sproul.

Recovering Scripture - Michael Horton says that recovering Scripture is the church’s only hope.

Why I Believe the Jury Got It Wrong - Thabiti Anyabwile explains why he thinks the jury got it wrong in Ferguson. This article takes a very different perspective from Voddie Baucham’s did yesterday. You may also want to read Dan Phillips’ excellent Seven Revelations of Ferguson.

The Most Satisfying Occupations - Well look what made #1 on the list…

A Thanksgiving Assessment - Paul Tripp has a Thanksgiving assessment for you.

Why You Paid More - “You paid $400 for your flight. The person next to you paid $250. Here’s why that makes sense—and benefits everybody.”

Jesus Christ is in every way sufficient to the vast desires of the soul. —John Flavel


November 26, 2014

Here are today’s Kindle deals: If you’ve still never read Laura Hillenbrand’s Unbroken, there’s no better time than now ($2.99); Also consider The Jesus Storybook Bible by Sally Lloyd-Jones ($1.99). You’ll find three new ones from Christian Focus: A Christian’s Pocket Guide to Baptism by Robert Letham ($2.99); The Way of the Righteous in the Muck of Life by Dale Ralph Davis ($3.99); and Coping with Change by Walter Kaiser, a fantastic little commentary on Ecclesiastes ($2.99).

Thoughts on Ferguson - Voddie Baucham offers his thoughts on Ferguson, and they are well worth reading.

How To Use the Colon - “It’s in ordinary writing that the colon gets a bit confusing. It’s sometimes used when it’s not needed, or not used when it is. And the biggest question is how to deal with the text that follows one.”

9 Things About Adoption - “Each year in November, the President of the United States issues a proclamation to announce National Adoption Month.” Joe Carter offers 9 things to know about adoption.

Serve Your Guts Out - Here are some great reasons to serve your guts out.

Prayer in the Facebook Age - This one is written from a Catholic perspective, but contains helpful thoughts on prayer in a Facebook age.

6 Theological Themes in Joshua - This article lists 6 theological themes that run through the book of Joshua.

I am going to judge my circumstances by Jesus’ love, not Jesus’ love by my circumstances. —Tim Keller


November 25, 2014

Every year I put together a round-up of Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals that are of interest to Christians. So be sure to check in on Friday and over the weekend—already I’m getting wind of some pretty good deals.

For today, though, here are some Kindle deals: Dining with the Devil by Os Guinness ($1.99); New Testament Theology by Leon Morris ($4.99); The Mission of Today’s Church by Various ($0.99); Embracing Obscurity by Anonymous ($0.99); Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart and Gospel by J.D. Greear ($0.99 each); Saving Leonardo by Nancy Pearcey ($3.99); Called Together by Jonathan Dodson & Brad Watson ($0.99); Make, Mature, and Multiply by Brandon Smith ($0.99).

Pagans in the Youth Group - Help! There are pagans in my youth group!

Terms of Service - This short graphic novel illustrates some concerns with today’s newest technologies. It comes from just one, biased perspective, of course, but offers lots of good food for thought.

Shepherd Press eBooks - For just a couple of days Westminster Books is offering all Shepherd Press ebooks at $1.99.

6 Joys and Perils of Full Time Ministry - There is some good stuff in this article by Josh Moody.

The Briefing - You may benefit from listening to this morning’s episode of Al Mohler’s “The Briefing” in which he discusses yesterday’s grand jury announcement. I look to him as a trustworthy guide and interpreter.

How to Buy Groceries - If you’re the shopper in your home, you may appreciate this guide to smart shopping at the supermarket.

Dear Mr. Anxious - Here’s a letter to the anxious Christian.

Let us learn a lesson of humility from our Saviour; let us never court great titles nor proud degrees. —C.H. Spurgeon


November 24, 2014

Here are today’s Kindle deals: Crazy Busy by Kevin DeYoung ($1.99); A Loving Life by Paul Miller ($1.99); Glimpses of Grace by Gloria Furman ($0.99); Contentment by Lydia Brownback ($0.99); The Christian Counselor’s Manual by Jay Adams ($1.99); God’s Battalions by Rodney Stark ($2.99); An Introduction to the Old Testament by Tremper Longman ($4.99); Worldly Saints by Leland Ryken ($4.99); Speaking Truth in Love by David Powlison (free).

A Timelapse of the Sun - This is “the surface of the sun from October 14th to 30th, 2014, showing sunspot AR 2192, the largest sunspot of the last two solar cycles (22 years).”

Theological Trespassing - “The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever.” You need to be wary of theological trespassing.

How Board Games Conquered Cafes - Here’s a trend I like; I wish I had a cafe like this in my neighborhood.

Holiday Hospitality - Here are 4 reminders for holiday hospitality.

I Will Choose to Trust God Today - Randy Alcorn (and Nancy Leigh DeMoss) share a pledge worth reading.

Satan wants to destroy our faith in God. God wants to destroy our faith in ourselves. —John Kimbell


November 22, 2014

It is a beautiful, cold and snowy start to the weekend here, though I hear rain is on the way. Early winter is a strange time in Canada. Kindle readers will want to know that I went looking for deals and found nothing. However, do check A La Carte Archives from the past 10 days and I’m sure you’ll find something to carry you through the weekend.

When the Spirit Says Put a Sock In It - Douglas Wilson: “Some might want to represent this as a view of mine, in which I am seeking to quench the Spirit. It is actually the view of the Spirit, working through Paul, in order to quench us.”

Here is something I’ve always wondered: Why do so many Asians wear masks in public? This article explains.

Angry? Jen Thorn struggles with it too and lets you into her fight with 5 Ways to Kill Anger.

I’m grateful to Reformation Heritage Books for sponsoring the blog this week with their article From Tyndale to Today. I appreciate sponsors because they cover the costs associated with hosting and supporting the site.

Lore Ferguson can flat out write, like she displays in this article: Looking for Love in All the Right Places.

J.D. Greear offers up Three Ways the Gospel Changes Our Generosity.

If your kids are into The Hunger Games, you may appreciate these 5 Ideas for Discussing Mockingjay with Teens.

One great power of sin is that it blinds men so that they do not recognize its true character. —Andrew Murray


November 21, 2014

Here are today’s Kindle deals: Everyday Talk About Sex and Marriage by John Younts ($2.99); Out of the Depths by Edgar Harrell ($1.99); The Promises of Grace by Bryan Chapell ($1.99). Also, a few days ago I listed the NIV Application Commentary series that is on sale, but missed a few of the newer volumes to reach ebook: Exodus1 & 2 Samuel*, Psalms (vol 1); Proverbs, 2 Corinthians.

Immigration Reform Will Tear Us Apart - Here is Russell Moore’s response to President Obama’s immigration executive action.

Things - Things is a fantastic piece of productivity software for Apple users, and the iOS versions are free for a week (down from $9.99 and $19.99): iPhone, iPad. I rate it second only to OmniFocus for what it does.

Choose Hospitality Over Entertaining - Jen Wilkin asks forgiveness and provides some sound counsel.

A Marked Ministry - WORLD magazine features an interview with Mark Dever, who always has good things to say.

Why Do Rivers Curve? - How did we ever learn such things before YouTube?

Why the Church Needs Struggling Members - “The opposite of our instinct is what we really need most, and when it comes down to it, our trials are not always about us. Sometimes we go through them for the sake of others.”

Every breath in your life is a gift of mercy. —George Swinnock


November 20, 2014

I’ve got a few new Kindle deals for you today: Relativism: Feet Firmly Planted in Mid-Air by Greg Koukl & Francis Beckwith ($2.99); The Problem of Evil by Jeremy Evans ($2.99); Nothing Is Impossible With God by Rose Miller (free); The Illustrated Life of Paul by Charles Quarles ($4.99). New from GLH Publishing is A Church in the House by Matthew Henry ($0.99).

True Things In a True Way - I appreciate what Darryl says here: “I’ve noticed a trend. In many of our settings, we tend to say things that are true as far as they go, but the way we say them contradicts what’s being said.”

The Case for Face-to-Face Meetings - There’s much more that could be said, but here are some good opening arguments on the value of face-to-face meetings.

Gospel-Centered - John Piper explains what it means to be gospel-centered or cross-centered.

The Band-Aid of the Future - Here’s a potential medical breakthrough. (Note for those with weak stomachs: the video display a small amount of blood.)

You Are Cured of MS - Does God heal today? Yup.

Four Reasons Time Management Is More Difficult - Matt Heerema offers 4 reasons that time management is more difficult today than in times past.

Airspace - Here’s a great video showing UK airspace over a day. Watching the overnight flights arrive from North America is incredible.

The cross of Christ is in itself an offence to the world; let us take heed that we add no offence of our own. —C.H. Spurgeon


November 19, 2014

Here are today’s Kindle deals: What Did You Expect? by Paul Tripp ($0.99); Introduction to Global Missions by Zane Pratt ($4.99); Forgotten Songs by Richard Wells & Ray Van Neste ($2.99); Bonhoeffer Speaks Today by Mark Devine ($2.99); Truth in a Culture of Doubt by Andreas Kostenberger ($3.99); 1 Peter ($3.99) and James ($2.99) in B&H’s Exegetical Guide to the New Testament series; The Christian Husband by Bob Lepine ($0.99); A Theology for the Church by Daniel Akin ($5.99); 1 Corinthians by Mark Taylor ($2.99). Today only the Kindle Fire HD 7 is $20 off at just $119.

Man, Woman, and the Mystery of Christ - Here’s the (PDF) text of Russell Moore’s address at the Vatican earlier this week. 

Interpretive Dance - WORLD magazine covers BioLogos. “The BioLogos Foundation is making a major, well-funded push to change the way Christians read Genesis and think about Adam and Eve.”

Daily Devotionals - I’m often asked to recommend daily devotionals, but rarely know which to suggest. Here are a few that are bundled and on sale at Westminster Books; they all look excellent. (Peace by Stephen Nichols, New Morning Mercies by Paul Tripp, Saving Grace by C. John Miller.)

A Proud Calvinist - “A proud Calvinist is a combination of two terms that have opposite meanings. A true Calvinist is one who humbly submits to God’s sovereignty.” And yet…

Mothering in the Internet Age - Instead of googling that question about mothering, why don’t you ask one of the older women in your church?

What’s Wrong with Reparative Therapy? - Heath Lambert addresses the much-maligned reparative therapy.

In closing…one of the new ways I am jealous of Americans is that they get access to all of Amazon; we can get ebooks, but not a whole lot else unless we’re willing to pay crazy shipping costs and taxes. But if I was in the US, I’d be all over today’s Gold Box deal, since we’ve had our pots and pans forever and a day.

What makes a leader is character. What makes a non-leader is ego. —Ray Ortlund


November 18, 2014

Here are today’s Kindle deals: Christian Beliefs by Wayne Grudem ($2.99); Theology in the Context of World Christianity by Timothy Tennet ($4.99); The Unquenchable Flame by Michael Reeves ($2.99); Jesus and the Gospels by Craig Blomberg ($2.99). Zondervan has lowered the price on all the volumes of their Counterpoints series ($2.99 each—the lowest I’ve seen). These are helpful books in orienting yourself in various theological dialogues: Baptism, Inerrancy, The Historical Adam, Creation and EvolutionMiraculous GiftsRemarriage After Divorce, Sanctification, The Church Growth Movement, Salvation in a Pluralistic World, Eastern Orthodoxy and Evangelicalism, Church Government, Women in Ministry, Lord’s Supper, Apologetics, Christian Spirituality, Divine Providence, The Worship Spectrum, The New Testament Use of the Old Testament, Hell, The Millennium, Moving Beyond the Bible to Theology, Law and Gospel, The Book of Revelation, The Apostle Paul, The Canaanite Genocide.

200 Calories - I’m kind of jealous that Americans get to celebrate Thanksgiving soon, so I thought I’d ruin it by sharing what 200 calories of many different foods looks like.

Count to Three in Hebrew - Was Jesus in the tomb for 3 days, or for 1 and half?

Technology and the Glory of God - If you’re in or near Ames, Iowa, why don’t you consider coming to this conference coming up in a couple of weeks.

Atheist Kids’ Songs - Tim Hawkins proposes kids’ songs for atheists. (HT)

What Kills Us - Here is a chart displaying what kills us. (See “200 Calories” above to explain the #1 killer.)

Don’t Adopt - Russell Moore tells you why you shouldn’t adopt. Kind of.

10 Things About Evangelicals - Warren Cole Smith lists ten things he wishes everyone knew about Evangelicals.

Beware of those who feed your ego. Befriend those who feed your soul. —Lecrae


November 17, 2014

There are lots of good Kindle deals today: Old Story New by Marty Machowski (free); Think by John Piper ($0.99); The Pastor as Scholar and the Scholar as Pastor by John Piper & D.A. Carson ($0.99); Logic by Vern Poythress ($0.99); Ethics and Moral Reasoning by Ben Mitchell ($0.99); The Gospel and the Mind by Bradley Green ($1.99); God So Loved He Gave by Kelly Kapic ($2.99); Christians In An Age of Wealth by Craig Blomberg ($3.99); The Best Kept Secret of Christian Mission by John Dickson ($3.99); Understanding Biblical Theology by Edward Klink & Darian Lockett ($3.99); Washed and Waiting by Wesley Hill ($3.99).

Today only Amazon has the 8.9” Kindle Fire on sale at $140 off (It may be a previous generation device; either way, it will be fine for reading.).

12 Struggles Singles Face - David outlines some of the struggles singles may face. He also defines singleness wider than you may be accustomed to.

Distinguishing the Spirit and the Serpent - “How do we distinguish the promptings of the Spirit of grace in His guiding and governing of our lives from the delusions of the spirit of the world and of our own sinful heart?”

Soul Earthquake - “Our comfortable life is not normal for most Christians in most parts of the world. It wasn’t normal during the time of the New Testament. In fact, looking at history, we have to say that both the religious freedom and material comfort of America are actually quite unprecedented.”

The Unsung Heroes of Church Life - The church is made up of many members, and they are all important.

Do You Hear the People Sing? - It’s this simple: “The defining sound on Sunday morning should be the singing voices of God’s people.”

Rocky Mountain Nights - Another great timelapse video, this one showing Canada’s Rocky Mountains.

God invites us to to come as we are, not to stay as we are. —Tim Keller