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A La Carte

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

February 16, 2016

Today’s Kindle deals include Truth Endures by John MacArthur ($2.99); A Biblical Home Education by Ruth Beechick ($2.99); God’s Crime Scene by J. Warner Wallace ($2.99); Uncensored by Brian Cosby ($1.99); Relativism by Greg Koukl ($1.99). The volumes in the Perspectives series are also $0.99 or $2.99: Perspectives on the Sabbath; Perspectives on the Ending of Mark; Perspectives on Your Child’s Education; Perspectives on Family Ministry; Perspectives on the Doctrine of God; Perspectives on Election; Perspectives on Church Government; Perspectives on Children’s Spiritual FormationPerspectives on Spirit BaptismPerspectives on TithingPerspectives on Christian WorshipPerspectives on the Extend of the AtonementPerspectives on Our Struggle With Sin.

Logos has several of the excellent ZECNT commentaries on sale for just $9.99 each: Matthew, Luke, Acts, Galatians, Ephesians, Colossians and Philemon1 & 2 ThessaloniansJames. At that price you’ll want to add these to your library!

That Part of Gospel-Centeredness We Avoid

There is truth to this. “One aspect of gospel-centrality remains under-emphasized among us: interpersonal reconciliation.”

43 Giant, Crumbling Presidential Heads in a Virginia Field

Smithsonian: After an ambitious monument went bust, big dreams—and big heads—remain.

To Your Daughter, Speak the Truth

Jen Wilkin has a word for dads.

Does God Need Anger Management?

“Does the God of the Old Testament need anger management? I have no easy answer. But I do know that we must take the text as it actually presents itself. If we let it stand on its own terms, we begin to find clues.”

One-to-one Bible Reading Evangelism

Jess Sheely reflects on what God has been teaching her as she’s engaged in one-to-one Bible reading evangelism.

This Day in 1497. 519 years ago today, Lutheran reformer and theologian Philip Melanchthon was born. *

Winter White

Here are some stunning winter photos.

Online Resources for Biblical Exegesis

David Murray has collected a big list of resources for biblical exegesis.

Whitney

Fasting does not change God’s hearing so much as it changes our praying. —Don Whitney

February 15, 2016

Today’s Kindle deals include 3 from Crossway: The Glory of Heaven by John MacArthur ($2.99); What Happens After I Die? by Michael Allen Rogers ($2.99); and Heaven by Christopher Morgan & Robert Peterson ($2.99). Also consider 10 Christians Everyone Should Know by John Perry ($1.99); God in the White House by Randall Balmer ($1.99); The MacArthur Study Bible NIV ($4.99).

Fear, Trust, and Missionary Kids

“Threat of physical harm and death do not keep missionaries off the field, but there is something that does. I have heard it from the mouths of Americans unwilling to consider missions, and ringing in my head these last few weeks: my kids could die.”

Death, the Prosperity Gospel and Me

Here’s an interesting perspective by a writer who spent much of her life studying the prosperity gospel.

A Giant Has Fallen

Al Mohler: “Justice Scalia firmly believed in the right of the people to establish a constitutional government that would recognize the ultimate authority of the people, not an elite of unelected judges, to establish laws.”

Social Media and Secret Lives of American Teenage Girls

Here’s one for parents to read.

6 Advantages of Consecutive Expository Preaching

Derek Thomas makes the case.

This Day in 1860. 156 years ago today, “Wheaton College was chartered in Illinois under Methodist sponsorship. (The following year the school passed into Congregational control. Today, Wheaton is non-denominational.)” *

What Is Grumbling?

Here’s a description and diagnosis of the sin of grumbling.

How to Land a 737

There’s a YouTube video for everything. Here’s one for when the pilot becomes incapacitated and you need to land that jetliner.

Spurgeon

Always stand to it that your creed must bend to the Bible, and not the Bible to your creed. —C.H. Spurgeon

February 13, 2016

This weekend’s Kindle deals include The Dude’s Guide to Marriage by Darrin Patrick ($1.99); The Hidden Life of Prayer by David McIntyre ($3.99); The Allegory of Love by C.S. Lewis ($1.99); The Christian Lover by Michael Haykin (free). Also, Westminster Books is offering 50% on the printed version of Albert Martin’s excellent book The Forgotten Fear.

Israel’s Women-in-Combat Experience

“Whenever anyone at National Review … writes in opposition to opening all combat jobs to women or (even worse) drafting women into ground combat, there is predictable hue and cry from the Left. ‘But Israel! You conservatives couldn’t possibly be criticizing Israel, could you?’” Here’s why Israel isn’t the trump card.

Bivocational Ministry

This article points out that a future trend in church planting and ministry is people who are deliberately bivocational.

The Old Testament in 5 Minutes

Here’s a brief video overview of the Old Testament.

Gospel for Asia

For a while now we’ve been hearing about concerns with Gospel for Asia. There is now a lawsuit going forward charging that funds have been misused. Yet “citing ‘innocent until proven guilty,’ GFA calls class-action suit a ‘blessing’ for chance to put allegations to rest.”

Ignore Most Relationship Advice

Jared Wilson says that you should ignore most relationship advice. If I don’t quite agree with the title, I do agree with the article.

This Day in 1939. Happy birthday to my favorite author, R.C. Sproul! Dr. Sproul turns 77 today. (See this infographic I made up 2 years ago.)

Bound

If you, like me, use Dropbox, you may be interested in Bound, an audiobook player that works with Dropbox.

Absurd Creature of the Week

I really enjoy Wired’s Absurd Creature of the Week column, and this one is no exception. God made some creatures that are well and truly bizarre.

Have Mercy! Listen to the Stories

Thanks to CLC Publications for sponsoring the blog this week with “Have Mercy! Listen to the Stories.”

Sproul

Nothing built for the glory of man will survive God’s scrutiny. But what is done for His glory will endure forever. —R.C. Sproul

February 12, 2016

 

The Creepy, Mysterious, & Interesting History of Valentine’s Day

I really enjoyed this article on the history of Valentine’s Day.

Scripture’s “Top Two” List

“The Apostle Paul has a tendency to give us lists of sins. He gives us at least five of them. At first glance, it feels like he is simply piling it on. But his lists include a recurring structure that brings keen insight into the human condition.”

Gospel Song Union

Gospel Song Union combines all of the former Mars Hill Bands. They were (and are) creating some really, really good music.

Splitting Your Giving

John Piper answers this question: “When it comes to giving 10% of my income to a church — my tithe — can I split the money and give, say, 5% to my church and 5% to a non-profit Christian ministry?”

How to Provoke Your Children to Anger

The Bible warns against it and this article teases out some of the ways we may do it.

The Advantages of Informal Mentoring

Formal mentoring is great, but often the greatest mentoring happens in those little moments.

This Day in 1915. 101 years ago today, blind hymn writer Fanny Crosby died. She wrote beloved classics like “Blessed Assurance” and “To God be the Glory.” *

The Word Study Fallacy

William Barrick writes about the danger of the word study fallacy.

Three In One

Yesterday we released two new Visual Theology items: A poster and t-shirt on the Trinity.

York

It takes no less grace to save a child from a sinful future than it does to save an adult from a sinful past. —Hershael York

February 11, 2016

Today’s Kindle deals include The Power of Suffering by John MacArthur ($1.99); A Hobbit, a Wardrobe, and a Great War by Joseph Laconte ($3.99); Help My Unbelief by Barnabas Piper ($3.99); To Live Is Christ To Die Is Gain by Matt Chandler ($3.99); and Mindscape by Timothy Witmer ($2.99). I know Christians are still divided on Harry Potter, but if you enjoy the series, there is now a Complete Collection for just $14.99 that gets you all 7 books.

Conscripted for Life, Not War

There are a couple of key lines in this article. “God gave women marvelous strength. Strength that wasn’t meant to be compared or measured against a man. Last time I checked, I’d never met a man able to give birth. I’ve also never known a man able to handle months of sleep deprivation during which he fed a tiny human round the clock from his very own body…”

I Love My Church!

I enjoyed this pastor’s expression of love for his church.

Hollow Square Hymnal

Hollow Square Hymnal is a new album just released by Cardiphonia. You can buy it or listen to the whole thing online.

5 Tips for Young Apologists

Yes! Here are some great tips for young apologists. 

Don’t Be Embarrassed by Your Ordinary Church

“When I talk to people about their churches I almost sense a little embarrassment about the size and perceived scope of their church. Apologetic words like small and ordinary come out. I would argue that these words are not bad at all—and perhaps even quite accurate—but it is the sentiment behind them that is concerning, especially in light of what the church is and does.”

This Day in 1948. 68 years ago today, Wayne Grudem was born! As we celebrate Dr. Grudem’s life, let’s continue to pray for his fight against Parkinson’s disease. *

Don’t Play Travel Ball

Jim Hamilton argues that it’s best to skip travel ball and to keep your kids in rec leagues.

The Triumph of Trans Lysenkoism

Rod Dreher: “This is how they work: screaming that anyone who doesn’t bend to their demands is causing trans suicides, is creating unsafe spaces, and so forth. When applied to science, it is LGBT Lysenkoism, the Soviet-era agricultural disaster caused by trying to make science fit into Stalinist political correctness.”

Ferguson

It is misleading to say that God accepts us the way we are. Rather he accepts us despite the way we are. —Sinclair Ferguson