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

Tim Challies

Challies on FacebookChallies on Twitter

A La Carte

May 31, 2014

Tullian Apologizes - If you’ve been following the disagreement between Tullian Tchvidjian and The Gospel Coalition, you should read Tullian’s apology. (You may also like to read Russell Moore’s reflections on it.)

25 Words that Are Their Own Opposites - English is a fascinating language and somehow allows things like this—words that are their own opposites.

GooBing Detroit - Here’s a fascinating site that compares Google Streetview pictures of Detroit over several years, highlighting the city’s decay. Be sure to scroll down a little bit.

What Was Jesus Praying in the Garden? - Here is some assistance in understanding what Jesus was praying in the Garden of Gethsemane.

How Many Stars in the Milky Way? - It’s awfully hard to know, but here’s a shot at an answer. Ultimately, though, it comes down to plus or minus a few hundred billion.

Fasting from Technology - Thomas Kidd offers some helpful thoughts on fasting from technology.

Dispatches from the Front - This video serves as a kind of prologue to the Dispatches from the Front DVDs.

You can give without loving, but you cannot live without giving. —Amy Carmichael

Carmichael

May 30, 2014

Two excellent books have been discounted for Kindle: The Forgotten Trinity by James White ($1.99); What Is Reformed Theology? by R.C. Sproul ($2.99).

Commentaries on Sale - Westminster Books is offering three hardcover commentaries by Iain Duguid at $20. That’s $20 for all three! That’s a ridiculously good deal. They’ve also got a free book in PDF format.

The Transgender Question - Russell Moore is really gifted at thinking through issues like this one. “As a conservative evangelical Christian, I believe the so-called transgender question will require a church with a strong theological grounding, and a winsome pastoral footing.”

What I Didn’t Do Today - I enjoyed this one!

What the Bible Says About Swearing - “There are two basic ways we might handle swear words with our kids and in our own use of the tongue. We could call them the List Strategy and the Heart Strategy.”

Self-Denial Giving - “In August, 1886, William Booth delivered a stirring challenge at London’s Exeter Hall, encouraging support of the Salvation Army so it could expand its ministries around the globe.  In the audience sat Salvation Army Major John Carleton, a one-time Irish textile executive.”

Legalism Is a Real Problem - “In the coming weeks, Dr. Richard Phillips will be discussing the affirmations and denials of the Gospel Reformation Network.” This is an increasingly important issue, so I’m looking forward to the series.

The worst thing thou has to fear is the treachery of thine own heart. —C.H. Spurgeon

Spurgeon

May 29, 2014

Here are a couple of new Kindle deals: The Mission of Today’s Church edited by R. Stanton Norman ($0.99); Christ’s Glorious Achievements by Charles Spurgeon ($1.99). Remember as well that Kevin DeYoung’s Crazy Busy is just $3.99.

Brooklyn’s Bridge - “In the year following the loss of their 4 month old daughter, Brooklyn, Adam and Corrie wrestle with grief and pain that leads to many questions. They discover joy can coexist with tragedy and that death is a bridge to something more in Christ.”

Hard Times - Here, from Mark Altrogge, are seven benefits of going through hard times.

Logos Reformed Resources - Logos is ramping up their Reformed resources. If you sign up for their email list, they will give you a free download of Cranfield’s On Romans and Other New Testament Essays.

Net Neutrality Jargon - Here’s the jargon behind the net neutrality discussion. This is an important discussion!

What Are We Teaching Our Daughters? - “There are young mothers in our churches who feel stressed because they have not mastered baking, sewing, ______, and feel as though they are failing their daughters because they can’t teach them these skills.”

The Only Running App - Here’s a clever article about the only running app you really need.

Until Christ’s return, there is only a pilgrim church here on earth, not a perfected one. —Sinclair Ferguson

Ferguson

May 28, 2014

Portrait of a Young Man with Down Syndrome - This is a long but interesting article about a dad trying to help his son find employment. His son has Down Syndrome, introducing an extra measure of challenge.

Northern India - Here is a great video of some of the best sights in Northern India.

What I’ve Learned in Twenty Years of Marriage - Russell Moore is one of my favorite writers and articles like this are exactly why. He describes some of what he’s learned in twenty years of marriage.

Al Mohler’s Summer Reading List - I always look forward to Al Mohler’s list of recommended summer reading. Here is the 2014 edition.

Faking Cultural Literacy - This could apply to the church as well. “It’s never been so easy to pretend to know so much without actually knowing anything. We pick topical, relevant bits from Facebook, Twitter or emailed news alerts, and then regurgitate them.”

Dangers of Theological Controversy - This is an important look at some of the dangers that can come during times of theological controversy. 

No man can do me a truer kindness in this world than to pray for me. —C.H. Spurgeon

Spurgeon

May 27, 2014

Here are just two Kindle deals for today: How We Got the Bible by Rose Publishing ($0.99); Bonhoeffer Speaks Today by Mark Devine ($2.99). And in case you didn’t check in yesterday, here are yesterday’s deals: Leland Ryken’s Christian Guides to the Classics are $0.99 each: Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter; Homer’s The Oddysey; Milton’s Paradise Lost; Shakespeare’s Macbeth.

Why Gay Marriage Is Winning - “A decade after Massachusetts became the first state to issue marriage licenses for same-sex couples, the gay marriage movement has all the momentum.”

Four Wrong Turns - I’ve really been enjoying Jamie Brown’s thoughts on avoiding performancism in corporate worship.

How to Engage the Demonic - “The questions is: how should we engage against the demonic? If Satan is real – prowling around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour – what can Christians do about it?”

Debunking Divorce Rates - If these statistics are better than the ones they debunk, they are very encouraging.

The Cause of Mental Illness - This looks like it will be a helpful series on identifying the cause of mental illness.

Germans in the Woods - Here’s a short, sad memory from the Second World War.

A man may be theologically knowing and spiritually ignorant. —Stephen Charnock

Charnock

May 26, 2014

Here are some new Kindle deals. Leland Ryken’s Christian Guides to the Classics are $0.99 each: Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter; Homer’s The Oddysey; Milton’s Paradise Lost; Shakespeare’s Macbeth.

One Anothers - Ray Ortlund has a list of “one another” commands he can’t find in the New Testament. They include Sanctify one another, humble one another, scrutinize one another, pressure one another, embarrass one another and a whole lot more.

How YouTube and Internet Journalism Destroyed Tom Cruise - It’s an odd subject, I admit. But it’s a fascinating article about how we can ignore wider context and focus on the sound bite.

On 5 Years of Marriage - “Marriage is one of those things that you think you know all about and then you get blindsided by the reality that what you thought you knew really was nothing at all.” Yup.

Whetting Your Appetite for the Word - “Recently, my wife and I had the joy of bringing our second son, Nathan, into the world. Newborns cry (for those of you who are not parents yet). Nathan cries amazingly loud when he’s hungry. He desires, with unfettered passion, to be fed every 2-3 hours. God reminds us in 1 Peter 2:2 that we are to desire his Word as babies desire to be fed.”

War on Boys - This video is worth watching.

This generation of Christians is responsible for this generation of souls on earth. —Keith Green

May 24, 2014

Remember that Crossway has 4 volumes in the excellent Preaching the Word commentary series on sale for $4.99 each: 1-2 Timothy & Titus; Matthew; Acts; Isaiah. (These commentaries are ideal for preachers or for devotional reading). Also, here’s one new Kindle deal: Relativism by Greg Koukl & Francis Beckwith ($2.99). It has the amazing subtitle Feet Firmly Planted in Mid-Air.

What Tom Nettles Taught Me - Don’t miss this one. “Tom Nettles retired last week as professor of historical theology at Southern Seminary, capping off a long and distinguished career. As I thought about his retirement, I reflected on what I’ve learned from this iconic Baptist historian, and it was hard to find a place to start.”

Six Principles for Youth Ministry - Here are six valuable principles to consider for youth ministry.

The Mansion: A Subprime Parable - I enjoyed this bit of writing from Michael Lewis.

Skipping Church - Here is a parable from Charles Spurgeon. He explains why people may be skipping church.

Empathetically Correct - This article deals with the “trigger warning” phenomenon and the move toward being empathetically correct (instead of merely politically correct).

Death used to be an executioner, but the gospel has made him just a gardner. —George Herbert

Herbert

May 23, 2014

Here are some new Kindle deals: Reading the Gospels Wisely by Jonathan Pennington ($4.99); God on Sex by Daniel Akin ($2.99); Willing to Believe by R.C. Sproul ($1.99).

10 Least Popular Books of the Bible - Here are the 10 least popular books of the Bible. Get to reading them!

Sing a New Song - Jamie Brown writes about how, when and why to sing a new song in your church. 

Remember Rather than Blame - “It’s not uncommon for those who grew up in the church, and who have become disenchanted with it, to blame the church they grew up in. I’ve seen it and I’ve heard it from young people around me.” I have too.

The Deepest Hole - Here’s a quick video about the deepest hole on the earth and what we’ve learned from it.

Russell Moore at HuffPo - “Since becoming the political point man a year ago for the Southern Baptist Convention, Russell Moore has more than once been interpreted as sounding a political and cultural retreat.” The Huffington Post reports.

Divine Child Abuse - Jason Helopoulos asks whether Christ’s death was divine child abuse. I especially appreciate his final point.

True religion is like the smallpox. If you get it, you give it to others and it spreads. —C.T. Studd

Studd

May 22, 2014

Here are a few new Kindle deals: Revive us Again from Walter Kaiser Jr. ($3.99); HCSB Study Bible ($4.99); The Promises of God by R.C. Sproul ($3.03); The Flow of the New Testament by Dale Leschert ($4.99).

When We Get Small and God Gets Big - This is a powerful bit of writing from Jared Wilson. Don’t miss it!

The Hardest Place on Earth to Be a Christian - “While there are many terrible places on earth to be a Christian (Sudan, North Korea, Afghanistan, Bhutan, etc.), Pakistan is arguably the worst. Other nations persecute believers, but in Pakistan the entire country has spent generations forming a world view that values the torturing of those that claim the name of Christ.”

The Great (American) Commission - This is good stuff from Tim Keesee. “When it comes to The Great Commission, I’m afraid that for too long, many of us here in America believe (or at least behave) as if we are at the center of the missions universe. Whether spoken or unspoken, the attitude is that our heritage, resources, seminaries, organizations, and obedience are critical to the breadth and depth of gospel work throughout the world.”

Minibooks on Sale - CCEF’s excellent minibooks are on sale this week at Westminster Books. They’re great resources to keep around the home and church as giveaways.

Sexual Desire and the Single Girl - The church is under-served in resources related to single women and sexual desire and temptation. This article could be helpful.

Genesis 1-11 - I enjoyed this short video overview of Genesis 1-11.

We talk of the second coming; half the world has never heard of the first. —Oswald J. Smith

Smith

May 21, 2014

The Gospel-Driven Life by Michael Horton ($2.99); How to Study the Bible by Richard Mayhue ($3.99); Together by Carrie Ward ($2.99); One Bible Many Versions by Dave Brunn ($2.99); New from Puritan specialists GLH Publishing is On Temptation by John Owen ($0.99).

Headed for a Crash - Jamie Brown attended “the National Worship Leader Conference, hosted by Worship Leader Magazine, featuring many well-known speakers and worship leaders.” He spotted a disturbing worship trend that we all need to guard against.

The Trauma of Abuse - Wendy Alsup writes about the trauma of abuse and the blessing of repentance.

Tom Nettles - Tom Nettles, historian and professor at SBTS, has just announced his retirement from full-time teaching. Here’s an interview with him.

To Set the Captives Free - Tullian announces that he has left the Gospel Coalition site as his blogging platform. Question for my readers: Do you understand the context behind this? Do you understand the law/grace distinction behind this battle? I’m thinking of trying to clarify it in my own mind and perhaps write about it.

Are Youth Groups Bad? - Ed Stetzer asks and answers.

The Least Popular Book - Apparently Obadiah is the least popular book in the Bible. David Murray gives you 6 motives to give it a study.

Faith does not eliminate questions. But faith knows where to take them. —Elisabeth Elliot

Elliot

Pages