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A La Carte

February 25, 2016

I was not able to track down any noteworthy Kindle deals today. However, those who (like me) are big Logos users may be interested in a new deal they are offering. They have a lot of new Crossway collections coming along, and for each one you pre-order they’ll give you a 20% discount toward an existing Crossway product.

Do Christian Parents Flirt with the Idol of Sports?

I fear that too many parents really do flirt with the idol of sports. “There’s an idolatry problem in our community related to youth sports. I see this problem every weekend as families gather at the field rather than their church. It’s a problem in my heart, too.”

The Apple Case and Your Future

“Digital technology always grows hungrier for more personal information, and we users nearly always accede to its demands.” The more we give to our digital technologies, the more important privacy becomes.

I Am

I Am is one of two new prints we’ve released at our Visual Theology store. The other is The Function and Use of the Gospel.

The Day I Saw Jesus

I guess each one of us can say that a day came when we finally saw Jesus. I enjoyed reading this account.

Is Family-Integrated Worship the Historical Norm?

I’ve said it before: If you believe family-integrated worship is most consistent with the Bible, please practice it. But, as this article shows, you cannot make the claim that it is the historical norm.

This Day in 2004. 12 years ago today was opening day of Mel Gibson’s movie, The Passion of the Christ. *

How To Win an Election

In this video a leading political strategist explains how candidates use the art of storytelling to help swing elections.

Southern Baptists Lose Almost 1,000 Missionaries

“Six months after announcing plans to cut 600 to 800 missionaries and staff in order to balance its budget, the International Mission Board (IMB) of the Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) revealed today that it has lost 1,132 workers—almost twice as many as its low-end estimate.”

Bunyan

In prayer it is better to have a heart without words, than words without a heart. —John Bunyan

February 24, 2016

Today’s Kindle deals include A Better Way by Michael Horton ($2.99); The Complete Guide to Christian Quotations ($2.99); The Man Called Cash by Steve Turner ($1.99); Beginning at Moses by Michael Barrett ($0.99); Finding Truth by Nancy Pearcey ($3.99).

Risen: Movies, Faith, and the Bible

The best and most important part of this article on the film Risen comes in the final paragraph.

I Got Skills

I enjoyed this reflection on motherhood and parenting.

Corpus Linguistics

I appreciated this critical interaction with the post I wrote on feeling, thinking, and believing.

Planet Earth 2

This is exciting: There will soon be a second series of Planet Earth. I can’t help but wonder, though, how much will be dedicated to climate change hysteria. “The series, which originally used the working title One Planet, uses technology including ultra high definition filming, drones and remote recording.”

Can God’s Love for Us Increase?

Mark Jones answers a common question and does so with a solid “yes and no.”

A Short History of the Mosquito that Transmits Zika Virus

“Question: What do Napoléon Bonaparte, Walter Reed, the Panama Canal, and the Zika virus all have in common? Answer: The Aedes aegypti mosquito…”

This Day in 303. 1,713 years ago today, the first official Roman edict for the persecution of Christians was issued by Roman Emperor Galerius Valerius Maximianus. *

Bonjour Paris

There may be a little too much hyper in this hyperlapse video of Paris, but it’s still pretty amazing.

The World’s Quietest Room

Imagine being in a room so quiet that you can hear your heart beat. You can even hear your joints scraping together when you move.

Whitney

The truly wise are humble because they know they still have so much to learn. —Don Whitney

February 23, 2016

Today’s Kindle deals include Onward by Russell Moore ($2.99); Understanding Baptism by Bobby Jamieson ($2.99); The Absurdity of Unbelief by Jeffrey Johnson ($0.99); Evangelical Feminism by Wayne Grudem ($2.99). Also the volumes of the Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary are on sale for $4.99 each: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus & Numbers, Deuteronomy, Joshua-Ruth, 1 & 2 Samuel, 1 & 2 Kings, 1 & 2 Chronicles, Ezra-Job, Psalms-Song of Songs, Isaiah, Jeremiah & Lamentations, Ezekiel & Daniel, The Minor Prophets.

People who use the Logos ecosystem may be interested in several Cruciform Press bundles that are deeply discounted. Also, they have just begun a sale on Wipf & Stock resources which may be of special interest to pastors, students, and scholars.

What Should Evangelicals Make of Karl Barth?

Justin Taylor shares D.A. Carson’s answer to Tony Reinke’s question. (Did you get all that?) “It is sad if knowledgeable pastors don’t make use of Barth, but it is even more sad if they make a wrong use of Barth. Barth has the capacity to say contradictory things without embarrassment.”

Discipleship in Jesus’ Style

Be sure to read this article on the best kind of discipleship. This is a serious, serious challenge to me.

Nothing to Celebrate

Carl Trueman: “The seriousness of a society’s funeral rites speak volumes about the seriousness of a society, for the way we treat the dead is really a function of how we value life.”

Hillary, Bernie, Donald, and Me

John Piper writes about life, dreams, and goals after 70. “At 70, I am energized to dream great things, because this year Hillary turns 69, Bernie turns 75, and Donald turns 70. … They only get to be President of a tiny territory called the U.S.A. I get to be an ambassador of the Sovereign of the universe.”

How to Slay the Dragon of Pornography

Ed Welch has a short but pointed article on slaying the ugly dragon of pornography.

Gospel-Centered Life Questions

Bob Kellemen is comparing the world’s 8 ultimate life questions to the Bible’s 8 ultimate life questions and seeing that the Bible wins every time.

This Day in 155. 1,861 years ago today, Polycarp, an early church father who was a disciple of the apostle John, was burned at the stake for his faith in Christ. *

iPhone Backdoor Brawl

WORLD has an article telling why Apple’s compliance or non-compliance with an order to unlock an iPhone is such a big deal.

Could We See the End of Malaria?

Is it possible that our generation will see the end of malaria? “The Nobel laureate Baruch Blumberg once estimated that malaria has killed half of the people who have ever lived. In 2015 alone, it killed almost half a million people, 70 percent of which were children. Today, about 3.2 billion people are, according to the World Health Organization, at risk of contracting it, most of whom are children and pregnant women.”

Flavel

One word of God can do more than ten thousand words of men to relieve a distressed soul. —John Flavel

February 22, 2016

Today’s Kindle deals include the excellent Theologians on the Christian Life series from Crossway at just $3.99 each: Augustine; Bavinck; Calvin; Edwards; Luther; Newton; Owen; Packer; Warfield; Wesley. Also consider picking up Rise by Trip Lee at $1.99.

More Thoughts on Christians and Sex in Movies

Samuel James responds to comments and criticism on his excellent article about nudity and sex in movies.

What Happened Between the Old and New Testaments?

When you flip that page between the Old Testament and New Testament, you are travelling 400 years. What happened in that time? (This is an advertisement for a course, but still has a helpful and brief overview of the main headings.)

Socialism Is Evil

Rick Phillips explains why socialism is evil. He focuses on 3 reasons: “because socialism is a system based on stealing; because socialism is an anti-work system; because socialism concentrates the power to do evil.”

At Least You’re Married or Single

Marrieds love to tell singles going through transitions and hard times, “At least you’re not tied down! At least you’re free to be flexible! At least you can make your own schedule, etc.” Singles love to tell marrieds going through transitions and hard times, “At least you have each other! At least you’re married! At least you don’t have to do it alone!”

Returning Home From Life In Space

What’s it like to return from space? This little video gives one astronaut’s perspective.

This Day in 1649. 367 years ago today, “The Westminster Assembly adjourns, having held one thousand one hundred and sixty three sessions over a period of five years, six months, and twenty-two days.” *

Turning from Idols to Find True Happiness in God

Randy Alcorn explains our attraction to idols.

The Blessing of Teaching the Children

Nick Batzig explains the unexpected blessings of teaching children.

Spurgeon

Though you hoard up wealth, gold is nothing but dust to a dying man. —C.H. Spurgeon

February 20, 2016

 

Cancer Cons, Phoney Accidents and Fake Deaths

“After Taryn Wright exposed an elaborate fake tragedy on Facebook, she found herself leading a squad of online detectives – but on the internet, it doesn’t take long for a crowd to become a mob.”

Clearance Sale

Westminster Books is having a clearance sale, discounting books they have too many of.

Yosemite Natural Firefall 2016

Yosemite puts on quite the display for a couple of weeks a year.

The Un-Resume

I like this: “In an exercise in humility, I would like to pull back part of the curtain by writing a resume not of my accomplishments and successes, but of my failures—for this too is a significant part of who I am (and who I am not), giving perhaps a more balanced perspective on the life of an academic.”

Keep Your Home Porn-Free

Here’s a recent interview and conversation I had with Jonathon Von Maren on keeping your home (and life) porn-free.

Monty Williams

Be sure to watch this video of Monty Williams speaking at his wife’s funeral. It is very, very powerful.

The Number One Reason We Struggle Overcoming Sin

Thanks to P&R for sponsoring the blog this week with “The Number One Reason We Struggle Overcoming Sin.”

Spurgeon

Some men pray to be made holy, but they wish to keep some little pet sin in the backyard. —C.H. Spurgeon

February 19, 2016

I’ve got just a couple of new Kindle deals for you today: Awaiting a Savior by Aaron Armstrong is $2.99; new from GLH Publishing is Spiritual Mindedness by John Owen with an introductory price of $0.99.

How Caring for Children Changes the World

Kelly Needham explains. “For the Israelites, redemption began with a baby and five brave women who believed that caring for babies mattered. May we be as countercultural as they were, saying in as many ways as we can that yes, caring for children matters.”

The Thinking Man’s Guide to Bernie’s Socialism

This is an illuminating guide to the kind of socialism Bernie Sanders is proposing.

Skylight

This is a stunning video showcasing the sky.

Is Religion the Cause of Most Wars?

It’s time to fact-check this common claim.

Some Thoughts on Christians, Movies, and Nudity

“On the whole, I think Christians would be better served in their lives, marriages, and imaginations if they made a point of avoiding films that simulate sexual acts or show nude characters.”

Should We Be Worried About Islamic State Building a ‘Dirty Bomb’?

Joe Carter has an in-depth FAQ on dirty bombs and the threat they pose.

This Day in 1812. 204 years ago today, missionaries Adoniram Judson, 23, and his wife Ann, 22, first sailed from New England to Calcutta, India. Judson would later focus his labors in Burma. *

Africa Has a New Islamic State. Or Does It?

Here is something to keep in mind as you pray for the world.

Marooned Among the Polar Bears

This is an enjoyable longform read.

Begg

A congregation who prays for their pastors will be a better-fed congregation than those who do not. —Alistair Begg

February 18, 2016

I don’t have any Kindle deals today but will point you to a few print deals at Westminster Books where they are having a sale on the works of John Murray. Redemption Accomplished and Applied is a must-read and his commentary on Romans will serve anyone preaching or studying the book.

Anthems for Little Theologians

I generally have a no-Kickstarter policy, but will make an exception here. Bible Sounds: Anthems for Little Theologians has a great sound and some neat animations. It may just be worth supporting.

Martin Luther’s Death and Legacy

Martin Luther died on February 18, 1546. Stephen Nichols recounts the end of his life.

Sex Education Should Start in the Christian Home

Yes, it should. “Christian homes should be the most open, honest, and comfortable places for kids and teens to learn and ask questions about sex.”

How Music Elevates Story

I loved this examination of the music of The Lord of the Rings.

I Was Friends with Charles Ryrie

This was a joy to read. “Dr. Ryrie was one of the godliest individuals I’ve ever known. I say that emphatically without any sentimental hyperbole whatsoever. In my lifetime of growing up in the church, years in Bible College and seminary, now over a decade of pastoral ministry, Dr. Ryrie was one of the holiest men I’ve ever met.”

10 x 100 > 1 x 1000

I think Nick Batzig is on to something with his unorthodox church planting mathematics.

This Day in 1678. 338 years ago today, John Bunyan’s Pilgrim’s Progress was first published. *

Climbing Lunag Ri

This is some amazing footage of two men trying to climb a 22,660 ft. peak on the border of Tibet and Nepal. (Note: There may be one swear word: I couldn’t quite make it out.)

Dating Someone with a Sexual History

The Desiring God blog has some wise counsel on dating a person who has a sexual history. “The twin emotions of dating someone with a sexual history, though, are insecurity and obsession…”

Newton

My grand point in preaching is to break the hard heart, and to heal the broken one. —John Newton

February 17, 2016

Today’s Kindle deals include The Expected One by Scott James ($0.99); Praying Backwards by Bryan Chapell ($1.99); Interpreting Gospel Narratives by Timothy Wiarda ($2.99); It’s All In How You Tell It by Haddon Robinson ($1.99). Also, the Kindle Fire device is on sale today. Finally, Crossway will give you a free copy of Augustine on the Christian Life if you fill out a quick survey.

I know some people appreciated yesterday’s Logos deals, so here are a few more. Two study Bibles: ESV Study Bible and Reformation Study Bible are on sale. Two commentaries on Isaiah are discounted a little deeper: Ray Ortlund and Alec Motyer. Also consider Cranfield on Romans at a 61% discount.

In Defense of Date Night

Stacey Reaoch defends date nights: “While it’s true that a good marriage is built in the mundane tasks of everyday life rather than on romantic getaways and mountaintop experiences, it doesn’t negate the fact that intentional time together as a couple is indispensable to having a healthy marriage.”

Joseph Fiennes Talks About Playing a Skeptic in ‘Risen’

Christian Today interviews Joseph Fiennes about playing the lead role in the new film Risen. They also talk about his upcoming role as Eric Liddell.

Beware the Black Hole of Time

Here’s a good warning for all church-goers. “Oh, yes, the black hole of time. This is that period of time following the service when the visitor is standing around awkwardly, knowing not a soul. As the church bustles about, clumped together in their familiar groups, catching up and fellowshipping, the new family nervously gathers their stuff, looks about the room and waits.”

Reading the Challenging PG-13 Bible Passages

There is some good guidance here on reading those PG-13 passages with your children.

This Day in 1912 and 2001. 104 and 15 years ago today respectively, missionary to India John Nelson “Praying” Hyde and Voice of the Martyrs founder Richard Wurmbrandt both died. *

Is a Surrogate a Mother?

This article discusses one of the complexities inherent in this “brave new world.”

A Short Remembrance of Dr. Charles Ryrie

I enjoyed reading Denny Burk’s short remembrance of Charles Ryrie who died just two days ago.

How the FBI Took Down FIFA

This longform article explains how the FBI got on the track of FIFA and how they eventually began to take it down.

Flavel

Every man loves the mercies of God, but a saint loves the God of his mercies. —John Flavel