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

Tim Challies

Challies on FacebookChallies on Twitter

A La Carte

April 02, 2015

A Fixation with a Sky Pixie - “In a culture that prizes sophistication, non-judgmentalism, irony and detachment, [Christianity] is to declare yourself intolerant, naive, superstitious and backward.”

Peddlers vs. Pastors - Are you a peddler of God’s word or a pastor of the Word? Here’s how you can tell.

Men for God Conference - If you’re in the Vancouver area, you might be interested in the Men for God conference which I will be speaking at in June.

The Truth of the Cross - The audiobook of R.C. Sproul’s excellent The Truth of the Cross is a free download this week.

Redeeming Rap - The Atlantic covers Christian rap and profiles Trip Lee.

Death Has Been Swallowed Up by Death - TGC continues their series on doctrine with a look at the Apostle’s Creed and the trick phrase, “He descended into hell.”

An Unlikely Convert - This month’s issue of Tabletalk magazine has an interview with Rosaria Butterfield.

Morality may keep you out of jail, but it takes the blood of Jesus Christ to keep you out of hell. —C.H. Spurgeon


April 01, 2015

Here are today’s Kindle deals: Not Just a Soup Kitchen by David Apple ($4.99); Sex, God, and the Single Life by Hafeez Baoku ($4.99); The Complete Spurgeon Sermons on Exodus ($0.99); Tulip by Duane Spencer ($1.99). New from GLH Publishing is The Reformed Doctrine of Predestination by Lorraine Boettner ($0.99). Amazon also has a whole list of titles at $3.99 or less.

RHB @ WTS - Here’s good news for you whether you use Kindle or another e-reader: Westminster Books has partnered with Reformation Heritage Books to offer some great ebook deals starting at $1.99. A Puritan Theology for $4.99? Yes, please. 

In other deals, Logos has Brevard Childs’ commentary on Isaiah as their free book of the month while Christian Audio is giving away Tortured for Christ by Richard Wurmbrand.

Journey - Here’s the best blog-related news I’ve heard in a while: Tim Keesee has begun a blog. You’ll want to bookmark it, I’m sure. Oh, and he’s got a new episode of Dispatches From the Front coming soon. Here’s the trailer.

Images of Jesus - I tend to favor the interpretation of the second commandment that forbids images of Jesus.

An Inheritance of Tears - Here’s a great review of the latest book from Cruciform Press: Inheritance of Tears: Trusting the Lord When Death Visits the Womb

Through the Eyes of Spurgeon - You can watch this full feature-length documentary for free on YouTube.

EnChroma - Though this video is a bit mellodramatic, it is also pretty neat. According to the color blindness test, I’m a “strong deutan” (strong red-green color blindness caused by an anomaly in the M-cone photopigment gene sequence). I’ve never really seen red or green.

Americans Muddled Morality about the Unborn - “The debate over fetal homicide reveals our society’s inconsistency in the ongoing debate over abortion: We only affirm the humanity of the unborn if the child is ‘wanted.’”

There is no sin so prevalent, so insidious, and so deep as the sin of fearing people more than we fear God. —Kevin DeYoung


March 31, 2015

Here are today’s Kindle deals: Discovering the God Who Is by R.C. Sproul ($3.99); 12 Challenges Churches Face by Mark Dever ($3.99); How People Change by Paul Tripp & Timothy Lane ($2.99); CrossTalk by Michael Emlet ($2.51).

Indiana: A Religious Liberty Bellweather - Rod: Dreher seems to get it right when he says, “This total political and media freakout over the Indiana law is the real story.”

What Dawkins, Hawking, and Harris Know About God - It’s the truth: “As we evangelize, we are not evangelizing blank slates. We are not starting with total ignorance. We are going to people who already know much about God.”

Write “Sending” Into Your Church’s DNA - Though eventually J.D. Greear mentions a forthcoming conference, you won’t want to miss the heart of the article: That every church ought to be a sending church.

Nuclear Energy Explained - This excellent little video explains how nuclear energy works.

Civil War Photos Online - The Library of Congress has acquired thousands of Civil War photographs and has put them online.

Fake Testimonials - Slate writes about Lifeway’s recent decision to stop selling heaven tourism books. “Theologically speaking it’s a sensible and belated move, one that has likely taken so long because of the immense amount of money these books bring in.”

Helping Children Benefit from the Sermon - Erik Raymond offers some tips.

If you are weak enough to confess your sins, God is strong enough to save you from them. —Thabiti Anyabwile


March 30, 2015

Here are today’s Kindle deals: The Pursuit of Holiness by Jerry Bridges ($2.99); The Pastor’s Justification by Jared Wilson ($1.99); Sensing Jesus by Zach Eswine ($3.99); Expositional Preaching by David Helm ($3.99); Am I Called? by Dave Harvey ($2.99); The Heart of the Matter by New Growth Press ($2.99); Multiply by Francis Chan ($2.99); Forgotten God by Francis Chan ($4.99); Old Story New by Marty Machowski ($3.99); Long Story Short by Marty Machowski ($4.99).

Can Canada Teach the Rest of Us to Be Nicer? - “Canada is to niceness as Saudi Arabia is to oil. It’s awash in the stuff, and it’s about time, I say, the rest of the world imported some.” Amen!

Fake Maple Syrup - First an article about Canadian niceness and then one about Americans’ apparent love for fake maple syrup.

The Spiritual Stages - Christians progress through various spiritual stages.

The Effect of Singing - “Worship is first and foremost addressing God and giving glory to God.”

Two Kinds of Bad Singers - In a similar vein, this article tells you about two different kinds of bad singers.

Discrimination in Indiana? - Wondering what the furor in Indiana is all about? Denny Burk explains.

Whether we like it or not, God intends to give us what we need, not what we now think we want. —C.S. Lewis


March 28, 2015

Today’s Kindle deals: Jesus Unmasked by Todd Friel ($4.49); Beat God to the Punch by Eric Mason ($2.99); Understanding World Religions by George Braswell ($0.99); Ordinary by Tony Merida ($4.99).

How Can Hummingbirds Hover So Well? That’s a questions scientists have wrestled with for a long time.

Gene Veith writes about Who the Unchurched Really Are. “Can it be that American Christianity, with roots in this culture, has become so prosperous and middle class that it would rather not deal with people from this social class?”

Richard Phillips answers this question: Why Are There So Many Singles? “Why does it seem that God withholds marriage for so many when he clearly upholds it, encourages it, desires it, etc.?  Why are there so many singles who want marriage but don’t seem to find it?”

It really is that simple: We Complain Because We Forget.

I appreciate these 10 Pointers for Untrained Preachers.

Thanks to Helping Without Hurting in Short-Term Missions for sponsoring the blog this week with their article Short-Term Missions: Redefining Success.

The true test of our worldview is what we find entertaining. —Albert Mohler


March 27, 2015

30 Years of Ministry - Mark Altrogge shares some of the lessons he has learned in 30+ years of pastoral ministry. I think the 2nd lesson is my favorite.

10 Chapter Books for Dads to Read to Their Kids - Looking for books to read out loud? Here are some options. (If your kids love to read, or you love to read to them, Redeemed Reader is a great site to bookmark.)

Biblical Grounds for Divorce - This article outlines a very traditional (and I think biblical) view of when divorce is permissible.

5 Reasons Your Church Should Be Smaller - I know it counters the Western mindset, but it’s true: Bigger is not always better.

Parenting in a Hyper-Sexualized Culture - Heath Lambert explains how he and his wife are raising their children in this hyper-sexualized culture. (I am not as committed to the discussion of modesty as he is, but I do understand why and how he uses the concept.)

Locking Out the Pilot - Here’s an answer to the question we are all asking: How is it possible to lock a pilot out of his cockpit? The answer is 9/11.

You must either give up your sins or give up all hope of heaven. —C.H. Spurgeon


March 26, 2015

Here are just a few new Kindle deals: When Missions Shapes the Mission by David Horner ($0.99); Manhood Restored by Eric Mason ($2.99); Holman Concise Bible Dictionary ($0.99).

Dating a Non-Virgin - Richard Phillips offers wise counsel in dealing with the dark side of the chastity industry.

How Many Stars Are There? - Enough that every couple of weeks there is a new YouTube video that tries to wrap our minds around it.

Christians, You Will Suffer - “If suffering disproves your Christianity, you’ve missed Christianity. The Bible is filled with the suffering of those whom God loves.”

Lifeway Pulls Heaven Tourism Books - This is great news: LifeWay Christian Resources has stopped selling all “experiential testimonies about heaven…”

ERLC Leadership Summit - ERLC’s leadership summit on racial reconciliation begins today; you can watch it live at the link.

Sing Your Heart Out - “The messiness of congregational singing is part of the beauty of God using weak and broken people. While we certainly want to strive for excellence in how we sing to our God, the sound of a child singing extremely loudly or, even at times, out of key, is a sweet sound that brings God great glory.”

Unreached peoples are unreached for a reason. They’re hard, difficult, and dangerous to reach. All the easy ones are taken. —David Platt


March 25, 2015

Here are today’s Kindle deals: Double Play by Ben Zobrist ($2.99); The End of Christianity by William Dembski ($0.99); Andrew Fuller by Michael Haykin ($0.99); The Word and the World by Eugene Merrill ($0.99). You might also consider 2 titles by Jeff Goins: Wrecked ($2.51) and The In-Between ($2.99).

When I Don’t Desire God - Ligonier and Desiring God have partnered to create a course called “When I Don’t Desire God” featuring John Piper. It’s free for the taking! (Also, Ligonier is having an #AskRC Live Twitter event today.)

Q&A with Sam Allberry - Denny Burk recently moderated a Q&A with Sam Allberry where he fielded questions from both Denny and students at SBTS. You can watch the video at the link.

Cannonball - Whether or not you like the music that accompanies it (I did!) this video is very well done.

Honoring Our Favorite Theologians - Westminster Books is offering a great deal on 3 volumes written in honor of some favorite theologians (Piper, Carson, Gaffin). Logos has some good deals in their March Madness event.

Take Note - Every serious reader has strong opinions about footnotes versus endnotes.

The Christian and Common Grace - I appreciated this reflection on God’s common grace. Now there’s something we too often take for granted!

Emotional Blackmail - John Piper comments on emotional blackmail within the church.

In the gospel, there is included all that the heart of man can wish. —J Gresham Machen


March 24, 2015

Here are today’s Kindle deals: Five Points by John Piper (One of my all-time favorite Piper books; $3.99); Salvation by Crucifixion by Philip Ryken ($2.99); Bible Answers by Derek Prime ($2.99); Holy Ground by Chris Castaldo ($0.99); Preaching to a Post-Everything World by Zack Eswine ($0.99).

Shelf-Life Of Worship Songs - Jamie Brown: “Things are not as simple for worship leaders/church music directors as they used to be. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it’s certainly a more complicated thing.”

Closing Accounts - This is a sad and sobering account of elder care today.

Blaine Boyer And His Personal Entourage - I enjoyed this story about Blaine Boyer and his baseball career.

Witchdoctors, Football, and Understanding Africa - This is definitely one of the most interesting articles you’ll read today.

He Knows - “He knew what joys this day would hold and He knows what sorrows tomorrow may hold, and whatever comes we know that we little unknowing ones are held close.”

Keep a Close Watch on Your Life and Illustrations - “I for one think sermon illustrations are way overrated. Yep, I said it. I think too much emphasis is put on illustrations in how we train preachers and in too many actual sermons.”

We stand in the present but dwell on the past in order that we can be steadfast for the future. —Dale Ralph Davis


March 23, 2015

Here a some Kindle deals to start the week: The Last Days of Jesus by Andreas Kostenberger & Justin Taylor ($3.99); A Shelter in the Storm by Paul Tripp ($2.99); Scandalous by D.A. Carson ($2.99); How God Became Jesus by Michael Bird ($4.99); A Complete Literary Guide to the Bible by Leland Ryken ($4.99); Know the Heretics and Know the Creeds and Councils by Justin Holcomb ($3.99 each).

The Archive of an Interesting Life - It’s not a junk drawer — it’s the archive of an interesting life.

The Grace in Going to Church - I like this one: The simple grace of committing to a church and going there week in and week out.

Al Mohler on Keeping the Southern Baptist Faith - WORLD magazine interviews Al Mohler.

The Wonder of Sunday Morning - Trevin Wax reflects on the sweet wonder of a normal Sunday morning.

Homecoming - Those who have followed Kara Tippetts’ blog for the past few years will want to read about her homecoming.

John Calvin’s 4 Rules of Prayer - Joel Beeke distills some of Calvin’s wisdom on prayer.

Christian, beware of thinking lightly of sin. Take heed in case you fall little by little. —C.H. Spurgeon