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A La Carte

April 16, 2014

Here are some items for the Christian reader: Thabiti Anyabwile’s new book Captivated is just $2.99 on Kindle; Preach by Mark Dever is $0.99. Westminster Books has a few of the excellent 9Marks books on sale. Banner of Truth has a spring sale which is highlighting one of my all-time favorite books: The Cross He Bore. Use coupon code challieschb to get 40% off that book or code springsale2014 to get 30% off the other sale titles. (The sale is North America only.)

Christianity Packs Its Office and Leaves the Building - This is a clever and insightful bit of writing. Jonathan Leeman imagines a public square without any Christianity.

5 Easter Errors - Here are 5 common errors to leave out of your Easter sermon.

Don’t Make My Funeral About Me - This is great stuff from Nancy Guthrie.

Music and Meaning - Harold Best has fascinating things to say about worship and music. In this article 9Marks asks him a few questions and he provides thought-provoking answers.

Christians Get Depressed Too - David Murray has now released 5 short films about Christians and depression.

Why Did Methuselah Live So Long? - “Anyone who’s ever played Bible trivia knows that Methuselah lived longer than anyone else. He died at the ripe old age of 969. But have you ever wondered why?” Read the article and you’ll find out.

IRS Gets Taxes, Jesus Gets My Heart - “Despite feeling a distinctly American inclination to don war paint and drop a few 1040 forms into the nearest harbor around this time of year, the vast majority of us will provide the government with the requested forms on or before the appointed date. And yet, other than avoiding the unpleasantness of penalties and prison, why should Christians pay their taxes? Or should they?”

The desire for even a good thing becomes a bad thing when that desire becomes a ruling thing. —Paul Tripp

Tripp

April 15, 2014

Here are a few new Kindle deals: Raised? by Jonathan Dodson & Brad Watson ($2.99); Embracing Obscurity by Anonymous ($2.99); Ten Who Changed the World by Daniel Akin ($2.99).

The Gospel of Jesus’ Wife - Sooner or later people are going to catch on that these new discoveries don’t actually change anything. But for now, read Al Mohler on Jesus’ supposed wife.

A Passion for the Gospel and Golf - “On Sunday Bubba Watson, one of the most untraditional golfers on the PGA Tour, was the winner of the 2014 Masters Tournament. But golf isn’t Watson’s top priority. What he considers most important can be gleaned from the description on his Twitter account, @bubbawatson (‘Christian. Husband. Daddy. Pro Golfer.’) and his website, BubbaWatson.com (‘Loves Jesus and loves sharing his faith’).”

Thankful That I Became Blind - “In her autobiographical book entitled Fanny Crosby’s Life-Story (1903), Crosby narrates the following account in which she expresses her thankfulness to God that, in His providence, she became blind.” It’s well worth reading.

When Marriage Is Hard - “Weddings are solemn ceremonies. While it seems romantic and idealistic on your wedding day to pledge your undying love and devotion to the man of your dreams, the truth is it is excruciating in real life. Very few married couples get very far into their marriage before reality sets in and these vows demand something from them.”

Pit Stops in 1950 and Today - Here is a comparison of Formula 1 pit stops in 1950 versus today. Maybe there’s a parable for our way-too-fast lives in there.

Joshua Project - The Joshua Project has relaunched their web site. “Joshua Project is a research initiative seeking to highlight the ethnic people groups of the world with the fewest followers of Christ. Accurate, regularly updated ethnic people group information is critical for understanding and completing the Great Commission.”

The depths of our misery can never fall below the depths of mercy. —Richard Sibbes

Sibbes

April 14, 2014

Here are some new Kindle deals: An Approach to Extended Memorization of Scripture by Andrew Davis ($0.99); Francis Chan’s books are on sale: Multiply ($4.99), Erasing Hell ($3.82), Forgotten God ($4.99), Crazy Love ($4.99). Preaching the Cross by the Together for the Gospel speakers ($3.99); Atheism Remix by Al Mohler ($1.99); The Gospel and Personal Evangelism by Mark Dever ($0.99); Truth Endures by John MacArthur ($3.99).

The Final Days of Jesus - This is from the Crossway blog: “In this week’s video series, well-known New Testament scholars explore the background and significance of the history-shaping events that occurred during Jesus’s last week on earth.”

I Will Praise You In This Storm - You ought to read this one. “Tornado watches and warnings are relatively frequent in eastern North Carolina. We pay attention to them, but don’t let them upset our routine too much because nothing ever comes of them, or they are always somewhere else.”

Going for Blood - “…I’m lost. I am distraught. Last night I couldn’t help it—I needed to see blood, so I scratched myself with my razor. Just a tiny bit of blood. A tiny scratch….” Ed Welch writes about cutting and other self-inflicted pain.

Did You Read About Reading? - Last week I linked to an article about reading and skimming. Here’s a follow-up which analyzes how many people actually read the whole article on reading. Answer: not very many.

What Is Alzheimer’s Disease? - This fascinating video explains what the disease is and how it progresses.

China’s Church Demolition Campaign - “Communist Party in Zhejiang rejects claims of campaign against Protestant churches but one official describes Christianity’s growth as ‘excessive’.”

Confess sin. It always helps you to see the cross of Jesus more clearly. —Ed Welch

Welch

April 12, 2014

Here are some noteworthy Kindle deals: Did Jesus Rise from the Dead? by William Lane Craig ($0.99); Washed and Waiting by Wesley Hill ($5.98); Prisbrary Publishing has a long list of excellent classical works you may be interested in downloading. You’ll find titles by Pink, Spurgeon, Owens, Edwards and a lot more, all at $0.99.

Together for the Gospel - All of the Together for the Gospel talks are now available for listening and/or watching.

The Great 1980s Dungeons & Dragons Panic - BBC covers the great Dungeons & Dragons panic of the 1980s. “In an era of potent concern over internet pornography, cyber-bullying, and drugs, it is hard to imagine a game being controversial. But 30 years ago Dungeons & Dragons was the subject of a full-on moral panic, writes Peter Ray Allison.”

How Deep are the Black Boxes? - “Pings from what investigators believe could be the missing Malaysian airliner fight MH370’s black box have been detected at a depth of 15,000 feet – deeper than light, deeper than the deepest diving mammal, deeper than the Titanic.” This graphic shows what investigators are up against.

Keep It To Yourself - What are you actually asking a Christian when you ask him to keep the gospel to himself?

How to Date Jesus’ Wife - Christianity Today: “New tests suggest a manuscript fragment is ancient after all. Is it important? We asked noncanonical gospels expert Nicholas Perrin.”

Christ and Him Crucified - What does it mean to know nothing except Christ and him crucified? R.C. Sproul explains.

The general rule is that those who listen most and speak least will be the most useful to sufferers. —David Murray

Murray

April 11, 2014

I found just a couple of minor Kindle deals today: God’s Not Dead by Rice Broocks ($4.99); Heaven booklet by Randy Alcorn (free). In case you missed them, you may want to go back and browse the long list of excellent deals from Monday and Tuesday.

Sex After Christianity - This is an important essay on sex after Christianity. “Same-sex marriage strikes the decisive blow against the old order. The Nation’s triumphalist rhetoric from two decades ago is not overripe; the radicals appreciated what was at stake far better than did many—especially bourgeois apologists for same-sex marriage as a conservative phenomenon.”

Platt on Heaven Is For Real - David Platt goes off on Heaven Is For Real and other heaven tourism books.

Sovereign God - Paul Miller’s article on God’s sovereignty is a good one. “What does it mean to say that God is sovereign? The refrain has become so common, almost clichéd, in Reformed writing and preaching that it sometimes slips away from the reader or listener without lodging meaning in the mind.”

Light Signatures - Can you identify these cities by their nighttime light signatures?

Happy Birthday Jake - Be sure to read Greg Lucas’ letter to his son on his twenty-first birthday. (And if you haven’t done so you, consider reading his book Wrestling with an Angel.)

Bible Balance in Christian Ministry - Church leaders ought to read this one about Bible balance in ministry. “Many errors in the church are not ones of substance, but degree. It is possible for a pastor to lead his church poorly while teaching wonderful things. How? By giving those good things disproportionate emphasis in the life of the body.”

The two poles could sooner meet, than the love of Christ and the love of the world. —Thomas Brooks

Brooks

April 10, 2014

I am seeing only a couple of new Kindle deals today: Matthew Henry Day by Day by Randall Pederson ($2.99); Advice to Sufferers by John Bunyan ($0.99).

His Strength, Our Weakness - Randy Alcorn says, “God uses my weakness and inadequacy not only to build my character, but also to manifest his strength and grace to me and through me.”

Comparison Is the Thief of Joy - The title is the most important part of the article, I think: Comparison is the thief of joy.

Exotic Pets - It’s a bit off the beaten track for what I usually share with you, but I quite enjoyed this article on exotic pets.

A Great Expedition - “I wanted to put together a practical list for leading our wives better on this glorious expedition. Now, some of these tips will work better for some couples than others so feel free to find what works for you and to mix and match. This will be a process of trial and error, but it is worth the struggle to grow spiritually.”

9 Things About the Rwandan Genocide - Joe Carter: “This week marks the twentieth anniversary of the beginning of the campaign of genocide in Rwanda. Here are nine things you should know about one of the most horrific seasons of slaughter in modern times…”

10 Key Events - This is good stuff from JT: “The following are ten key events that took place in the relationship between evangelicals, fundamentalists, modernists, and neo-evangelicals during the 20th century in North America.”

It is insulting to a man to call him a fool, but I question whether any man is saved unless he has called himself a fool. —C.H. Spurgeon

Spurgeon

April 09, 2014

Moralism Is Not the Gospel - Mohler: “In our own context, one of the most seductive false gospels is moralism. This false gospel can take many forms and can emerge from any number of political and cultural impulses. Nevertheless, the basic structure of moralism comes down to this — the belief that the Gospel can be reduced to improvements in behavior.”

Internet Porn and the Decline of Faith - Joel Miller: “Since the early 1990s, there has been a significant uptick in Americans abandoning their faith. After crunching the numbers, one researcher says contributing factors such as upbringing and education only explain part of the increase. What about the rest?” Could it be related to porn?

When Does Christian Get Saved? - Justin Taylor asks Jim Orrick, professor of literature and culture at Boyce College, when in Pilgrim’s Progress Christian gets saved.

Grumbling and Complaining - Lore Ferguson: “My heart has been a grumbling one recently. I could give you a few reasons I think why my grumbling is necessary or warranted, but the truth is that even talking about those situations would invite more grumbling.”

How the Secret Police Tracked My Childhood - I really enjoyed this article from the BBC: “Fighting the system used to be dangerous anywhere in Eastern Europe. For one protester from a small Romanian village it was disastrous - and also for his family, whose every word was recorded by the secret police. Carmen Bugan, who found the transcript of her childhood, tells their story.”

Nothing that man can present to God by way of sacrifice can ever purchase the blessing of forgiveness.C.H. Spurgeon

Spurgeon

April 08, 2014

There are lots of Kindle deals today! Exalting Jesus in Matthew (a commentary) by David Platt ($2.99); Creature of the Word by Matt Chandler ($2.99); Brothers, We Are Not Professionals by John Piper ($2.99); HCSB Study Bible ($2.99); The Measure of Success by Carolyn McCulley ($2.99); Manhood Restored by Eric Mason ($2.99); Gospel-Centered Teaching by Trevin Wax ($2.99); Truth Matters by Andreas Kostenberger ($4.99); Stop Asking Jesus into your Heart by J.D. Greear ($2.99); The Lion and the Lamb by Andreas Kostenberger ($0.99); Christless Christianity by Michael Horton ($3.99); 

Together for the Gospel - The Together for the Gospel conference begins today, which is why I’m on my way to Louisville right now. You can watch it live beginning this afternoon.

English is Crazy - Yes it is. This poem explains.

31 Days of Purity Ebook - If you want to have the 31 Days of Purity in ebook format, visit the link and have at it.

Inerrant Word - InerrantWord is a new web site from John MacArthur dedicated to the always-important subject of inerrancy. It is part of the lead-up to next year’s Shepherds’ Conference Summit on Inerrancy.

Whisperings - Here is some counsel for pastors and church leaders who find themselves the subject of gossip.

Fall in Love Again - This is a good one from Paul Tripp.

Stop Forgiving Those Who Don’t Want Forgiveness - David writes about those who say they forgive others, even when they don’t want forgiveness. “I understand the motive, and also the desire to present an attractive witness about Christian forgiveness to the world. But it’s not a faithful witness to God. It does not reflect how God forgives, which is to be our pattern and model. Here’s why: God does not forgive those who do not want forgiveness.”

Scanning and Skimming - You’ll want to give this one a quick skim. “Serious reading takes a hit from online scanning and skimming, researchers say.” I put it at the end of today’s links just to make you feel guilty…

The truth of our Lord Jesus Christ is what is worth living for, and what is worth dying for. —W. Robert Godfrey

Godfrey

April 07, 2014

Here are some new Kindle deals: Gray Matters by Brett McCracken ($1.99); The Faithful Preacher by Thabiti Anyabwile ($3.99); A Passion for Faithfulness by J.I. Packer ($3.99); Proclaiming a Cross-Centered Theology by Together for the Gospel speakers ($3.99); Biblical Foundations for Manhood and Womanhood edited by Wayne Grudem ($1.99); The Message of the New Testament by Mark Dever ($0.99); Stand by John Piper & Justin Taylor ($3.99). Zondervan has a big list of reference works and other resources on sale: The New Matthew Henry Commentary ($4.99); Dictionary of Biblical Imagery by John Beck ($5.99); Zondervan Illustrated Bible Dictionary ($5.99); Zondervan Encyclopedia of the Bible Volume 1, Volume 2, Volume 3, Volume 4, Volume 5 ($6.99 each); Dictionary of Bible and Theology Words ($3.99); How to Read the Bible Through the Jesus Lens by Michael Williams ($3.99); How to Read the Bible For All Its Worth by Fee & Stuart ($3.99); How to Read the Bible Book by Book by Fee & Stuart ($3.99).

How to Identify False Teachers - Denny Burk has a great little article on identifying false teachers.

Without God, Without Hope - I appreciated Charlene’s article in which she remembers her youth and says, “When I hear myself say things like what is wrong with people these days?,’ shake my head in disgust and marvel that human beings could be so rebellious, so foolish, so crass, so arrogant, it is a good sign that I am not remembering where I came from.”

The Greatest Infographic - I enjoy the YouTube channel Numberphile. In this video they discuss what may be one of the greatest infographics ever. “in 1862 Charles Joseph Minard created a much-praised infographic depicting Napoleon’s invasion of Russia in 1812.” It’s pretty amazing.

Is Online Church Really a Church? - No. Ed Stetzer explains.

Portraits of Reconciliation - This is a moving photo essay. “Last month, the photographer Pieter Hugo went to southern Rwanda, two decades after nearly a million people were killed during the country’s genocide, and captured a series of unlikely, almost unthinkable tableaus.”

Teaching Your Children Politeness - Here are some pointers on teaching your children to be polite. 

The Lord Jesus has as great an interest in the weakest saints as the strongest. —Thomas Brooks

Brooks

April 05, 2014

Do We Want Christ? Or To Be Wonderful Christians? - I appreciate what Elisha asks in this article: “Do I want to be a wonderful Christian, or do I want Christ? Does my soul long to be a better Christian or does my soul long for the living God? Do I simply want to grow in Christlike character or do I want deeper intimacy with the Person of Christ.”

Board Games - Once a year or so Amazon puts a lot of board games on sale. Today’s the day! Ticket to Ride, 7 Wonders, Dominion, Axis and Allies, Forbidden Island, etc, are all heavily discounted.

The New Calvinism - PBS did a feature on the New Calvinism, focusing on the SBC. It’s not like they discovered anything we didn’t already know, but it’s still interesting enough, I guess.

Young, Restless, Reformed - While we’re on the subject of the New Calvinism, Collin Hansen’s book Young, Restless, Reformed is on sale for Kindle ($3.99).

The British Isles in Accents - This is pretty neat: A tour of the British Isles through its accents.

Distracted from Shepherding a Child’s Heart - There is food for thought in this article, though I’m not convinced the problem is quite as bad as he makes it out to be.

The NSA Spying Machine - Here’s an interactive graphic meant to show what we know that NSA is able to do.

Reporting Abuse - Here’s an important article on pastoral wisdom and the mandate to report abuse.

Do you know who you need to be saved from? You need to be saved from God. —Voddie Baucham

Baucham

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