Welcome to the online home of Tim Challies, blogger, author, and book reviewer.

Tim Challies

Challies on FacebookChallies on Twitter

A La Carte

May 20, 2015

Commentary Sale - Westminster Books is having a fantastic commentary sale, offering paperback volumes in the solid Tyndale Commentary series for just $10 each (which is very, very low). Stay tuned and I’ll post an article suggesting which are the best in the series.

Does R.C. Sproul Believe in Miracles? - “If you want me to give the simple answer, the answer is no. [I]f you expect a miracle—if miracles are expectable—there’s nothing miraculous about them.” However…

The Well-Gifted Grad - Here are some solid ideas for books to gift to grads.

Rome, Her Saints, and the Gospel - “What is a saint? How does one become a saint? And what is Rome doing when they canonize someone?”

4 Principles for Finishing Well - This one is for students who can just about smell the summer coming.

Five Things Every Christian Should be Doing with God’s Word - In Psalm 119 we find “David interacting with the Word of God in five ways that should be paradigmatic for all believers…”

Ten Unforgettable Lessons - Ray Ortlund shares 10 unforgettable lessons on fatherhood that he learned from his own father.

Maybe the reason we’re not humbled by the holiness of God is we’ve fashioned a God who is just like us. —Ryan Huguley

Huguley

 

May 19, 2015

Here are today’s Kindle deals: Rise by Trip Lee ($1.99); The Hardest Peace by Kara Tippetts ($0.99); Seven Men by Eric Metaxas ($1.99); Coffee with Calvin by Donald McKim ($1.99); The White Horse King by Benjamin Merkle ($0.99); Mere Apologetics by Alistair McGrath ($2.51); A City Upon a Hill by Larry Witham ($1.99); 

Adding Stars - Don’t miss this one! “So, we send off the ones we love and we go forth ourselves—over oceans and just across the street, into hostile regions of foreign countries and into the familiar comfort of a culturally Christian Bible Belt. Each is as full of wandering and wondering souls as the other.”

Students! Seize the Summer! - Here’s some good counsel for students.

What is Marriage to Evangelical Millennials? - “The one promise I make to my students at the beginning of the course is that they are guaranteed to read something they will find disagreeable, probably even offensive. That promise used to be easier to keep.”

A Goodbye to Youth Ministry - As Mike Leake says farewell to youth ministry, he lays out a simple, helpful philosophy of youth ministry.

The Benefits of an Annual Study Group - I’ve always loved what Darryl models here: An annual study group with a bunch of like-minded people.

Family Ministry - Writing primarily to pastors, Timothy Paul Jones offers three truths and three tips to engage with families in your church.

Wolf Hall and the Protestant Reformation - [Especially] If you watched the PBS series Wolf Hall, you may be interested in this article on the main characters and what became of them.

We must meditate, brothers. These grapes will yield no wine till we tread upon them. —C.H. Spurgeon

Spurgeon

 

May 18, 2015

The excellent 9Marks: Building Healthy Churches series is on sale today: The Gospel by Ray Ortlund; Evangelism by Mack Stiles; Expositional Preaching by David Helm; Sound Doctrine by Bobby Jamieson; Church Elders by Jeramie Rinne; Church Membership by Jonathan Leeman; Church Discipline by Jonathan Leeman ($4.99 each). The Confessions of St. Augustine in modern English ($0.99); The Quick-Start Guide to the Whole Bible by William Marty ($2.99).

#AskAlcorn - Here are the results of Randy Alcorn’s recent Twitter chat. He answered a whole host of questions.

The Best Idioms in the World - This is an amusing list of some of the best (and weirdest) idioms from across the world.

The Pastor and Social Media - Pastors (and others) may do well to read these comments by Nicholas Batzig. “I have to insist that to write off this medium wholesale … is shortsighted at best. Similarly, judging others for their use of social media is shortsighted at best as well.”

In Flight - If you’re at all interesting in air travel you will probably enjoy this article in which you’ll gain a pilot’s-eye view of a flight from London to Tokyo.

The Gathering Storm - Al Mohler borrows a line from Winston Churchill and warns of a different kind of battle that is fast approaching.

That Little Word - Andrew Wilson discovers the final question and answer in the Heidelberg Catechism, and it is worthy of reflection.

The Power of False Memory - The recent attacks in Manhattan show how quickly we can develop false memories.

A twig is brought to any form, but grown trees will not bow. How few are converted in old age! —John Flavel

Flavel

 

May 16, 2015

Nick writes about The Pastor’s Dilemma, the fact that an awful lot of seminary students are carrying an awful lot of debt.

Today’s flash deal from Zondervan is PROOF: Finding Freedom through the Intoxicating Joy of Irresistible Grace by Daniel Montgomery & Timothy Paul Jones.

It’s always fun to meet a quirky person who simply loves what he does. That’s the case in this short film titled Conrad and The Steamplant.

“Go to the ant,” said Solomon. You’ll enjoy seeing how trap-jaw ants have evolved been created. “Their spring-loaded jaws are capable of snapping shut as fast as 60 meters/second (134 miles/hr) and can generate forces over 300 times their body weight.”

It was fun to read The Gospel Coalition profiling Betty McPhee, a dear family friend: Helping Deaf Students to Flourish.

Here are 5 Reasons Why Your Online Presence Will Replace Your Resume in 10 Years. “We’re seeing more and more recruiters use the web as a place to search for talent and conduct employment background searches.”

Thanks to MereChurch for sponsoring the blog this week. They are exactly right: Your Church Needs a Great Website.

The process of history is not haphazard. There is a purpose in it all. And the purpose is the purpose of God. —Leon Morris

Morris

 

May 15, 2015

Today’s flash deal from Zondervan is A God-Sized Vision by Collin Hansen & John Woodbridge ($1.99); you might also consider Stop Asking Jesus Into Your Heart by J.D. Greear ($0.99). Finally, tomorrow is the last day to take advantage of Monday’s deals.

Overstock Sale - I know I already linked to Westminster Books once this week, but thought I’d do so again since they have some great deals on overstock and imperfect items (including books by some favorite authors).

Love Theologically - Here’s a good word from Mike Wittmer on a common false dichotomy.

The State of the PCA - Bryan Chapell has a long and interesting evaluation of the current state of the Presbyterian Church in America. (Richard Phillips replies.)

Should We Call Them Bullies? - John Knight pulls no punches in this article on bullies, disability, and abortion.

Our Words Will Be Thunder When Our Life Is Like Lightning - That’s a great title for a good article.

Pixar Easter Eggs - This video displays some of the internal cohesion in Pixar movies.

Love is counting someone else’s needs and interests as more important than your own needs or interests or comfort. —Tim Keller

Keller

 

May 14, 2015

Today’s flash deal from Zondervan is Matt Perman’s excellent What’s Best Next ($1.99). Other daily deals include Nothing Is Impossible with God by Rose Marie Miller ($1.99); Glorious Ruin by Tullian Tchividjian ($1.99); Identity by Eric Geiger ($2.99); and the bestselling The Boys in the Boat by Daniel Brown ($2.99).

Don’t Confuse Spirituality with Righteousness - R.C. Sproul says it well: “Spirituality and piety are not ends in themselves. In fact they are worthless unless they are means to a higher goal. The goal must go beyond spirituality to righteousness.”

What Does It Mean to Accept Jesus? - Ray Ortlund explains by way of a helpful illustration.

Portrait Of A Master Woodworker - It is always a joy to watch a master at his craft.

Typedrummer - Bookmark it and come back to it when you need something to take your mind off life for 10 minutes. You’ll thank me later.

Rethinking Access to the Autographs - One of the standard challenges for New Testament textual criticism is whether we can work our way back to the original text. Michael Kruger looks at some interesting new research here.

Every christian should be both conservative and radical; conservative in preserving the faith and radical in applying it. —John Stott

Stott

 

May 13, 2015

Here are today’s Kindle deals: Ordinary by Michael Horton ($1.99); The Conviction to Lead by Albert Mohler ($2.99); Which Bible Translation Should I Use? by Andreas Kostenberger ($4.99); If God Why Evil? by Norman Geisler ($1.99).

Pray for R.C. Sproul - Ligonier has an update on R.C. Sproul’s condition. Do continue to pray for his recovery.

Books for Theologians - This week’s deals at Westminster Books will be of special interest to pastors or theologians (or people looking for read reading that will stretch them); be sure to scroll down to see them all.

Leading on the Edge - The article is actually about leading worship but I loved the quote: “Someone once described an American football game as ‘22 people on the field in desperate need of rest, watched by 60,000 people in the seats in desperate need of exercise’.” 

Charles Spurgeon, Susannah, and The Pilgrim’s Progress - This is a fun little snippet from the life of Charles Spurgeon.

Is Christianity Dying? - Russell Moore: “Bible Belt near-Christianity is teetering. I say let it fall.”

Tempted on All Points? - David Murray follows up John Piper in addressing the temptation of Jesus. “Can Jesus really identify with me when he doesn’t know the experience of indwelling sin raging war against the Spirit? Aren’t our temptations more powerful than those faced by Christ on earth?”

None of the important things God has for us to do in church each week can happen if we’re not there. —Tony Payne

Payne

 

May 12, 2015

The new second edition of my book The Next Story on sale today only for just $1.99. It’s unlikely to ever be cheaper!. Other Kindle deals include: The Pastor’s Kid by Barnabas Piper ($2.99); Jesus and the Gospels by Craig Blomberg ($4.99); The Pilgrim’s Regress by C.S. Lewis ($1.99). Then there are a few Warren Wiersbe books: Be Mature (James); Be Joyful (Philippians); Study Guides for Leviticus, 2 Samuel & 1 Chronicles, Ezekiel, the Minor Prophets.

Engagement Announcement - Nancy Leigh DeMoss is getting married! She shared the happy announcement yesterday morning.

The Five Best Years In Christian Music History - I’m inclined to agree with Stephen Altrogge: “I think 1995 – 2000 may have been the greatest five years in Christian rock history.”

Mix in Some Off-Speed Pitches - This is good preaching advice from Erik Raymond.

America’s $70 Billion Shame - People spent more money playing the lottery last year than on books, video games, and tickets for movies and sporting events combined.

Two Days in Dubai - Here’s an amazing collection of photos from Dubai (with a few of Abu Dhabi).

How Do I Know I’m a Christian? - Kevin DeYoung provides an answer for a question people keep asking.

Who Wrote the Gospels? - This is a very logical and common-sense answer to the question of who wrote the gospels.

It is not the doctrine of justification that does my heart good, it is Christ, the justifier. —C.H. Spurgeon

Spurgeon

 

May 11, 2015

Today’s Kindle deals: Overcoming Sin and Temptation by John Owen ($5.99); Spectacular Sins by John Piper ($2.99); Tempted and Tried by Russell Moore ($3.99); Whiter Than Snow by Paul Tripp ($3.99); Walking in the Spirit by Kenneth Berding ($2.99); Why I Am a Christian by John Stott ($1.99); Zondervan will have some good Kindle deals all week long. Today’s deal is the excellent Seeking Allah Finding Jesus by Nabeel Qureshi ($2.99).

Making Meetings Effective - Here’s some simple advice for making church-based meetings effective. Because we’ve all been in too many meetings where too little actually gets done.

A Critique of Family Driven Faith - Jerry Wragg and Todd Murray have written a helpful critique of Voddie Baucham’s Family Driven Faith, and with it the Family Integrated Church movement (part 1part 2, part 3).

25 Things Yankees Should Know When Moving to the South - I enjoyed this list from Barnabas Piper.

Masculinity Crisis - “Porn and video game addiction are leading to ‘masculinity crisis’, says Stanford prison experiment psychologist.” I don’t agree with all he says, but the basic premise is interesting (and unsurprising).

If You See Something Say Something - “Ask religion journalists which they’ve encountered more: false witnesses and discord-sowers, or people with firsthand knowledge of wrongdoing who stay silent.”

Painless Parker - This is a fun little bit of history: Painless Parker, the celebrity dentist. Yes, dentist.

There is a difference between a well-instructed congregation and a well-nourished one. —Sinclair Ferguson

Ferguson

 

May 09, 2015

Here are a few new Kindle deals: Desperate: Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe by Sarah Mae & Sally Clarkson ($1.99); Forever Mom by Mary Ostyn ($1.99); Think Big by Ben Carson ($1.99).

Douglas Wilson takes on N.T. Wright in an article titled And All God’s People Said, “Wut?”

Jared Wilson has penned An Open Letter to Tom Brady. “I’m writing this not as a BradyHater™, but as a full-on fanboy. You are my favorite sportsman ever — in any game, from any era.”

Here’s a sweet letter from a mom to the birth mothers of her children: Dear Birthmother.

Todd Billings says God Is Bigger Than My Cancer. “There’s no doubt about the diagnosis,” the doctor said. Incurable cancer. A fatal disease. I had just celebrated my tenth anniversary with my wife, and we were busy raising our children, aged 1 and 3.

Joe Thorn has a little mini-series of posts on what small churches can do: Part one and part two.

Thanks to Matthias Media for sponsoring the blog this week with Two Ways to Grow a Disciple-Making Culture in Your Church.

There is nothing that makes us love a man so much as praying for him. —William Law

Law

 

Pages