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General News

July 22, 2005

Everybody’s friend John, proprietor of Monergismbooks, has asked me to let you know that he is having a big ol’ Summer Sale. All of the Banner of Truth titles he stocks are 40% off, but only until July 28, so there isn’t time to hesitate. Visit this link to get the details. This is your opportunity to stock up on some of those excellent but often-expensive titles by Iain Murray, as well as Puritan classics and all sorts of other great books.

For those who have not yet figured it out, Doug of Coffeeswirls fame will be my partner in crime at the Desiring God National Conference. And while we are on the subject, they just announced the details about the conference. You can read about it here. Let me know if you’ll be there!

July 21, 2005

I couldn’t find a word beginning with “C” that would make a more illiterative title. Any suggestions are welcome. “Wonderful” just doesn’t seem to cut it.

Today marks the anniversary of the very first moon landing, which took place on this date in 1969. Google marks the occasion by creating a special logo and by providing a map of the moon (or maybe it’s the map of a Hollywood studio). You can see it at http://moon.google.com/. Zooming in all the way will solve one of humanities’ greatest questions.

And from the Now That’s Just Mean Files I present this. For those who have no idea why this is mean, read my review of What Is Reformed Theology?. For those who are too lazy, well, suffice it to say that What Is Reformed Theology and Grace Unknown are the same book, but by different publishers. So ordering them both isn’t really much of a deal. I wouldn’t recommend it.


I’m jamming today (is that what I should be doing with hymns?) to Songs For The Cross Centered Life. It is a CD companion to C.J. Mahaney’s book The Cross Centered Life which I have been meaning to read for a long, long time. At only 85 pages, there is no excuse for this procrastination. I’ll try to get to it shortly. In the meantime I’ll continue to enjoy the CD, which is just excellent.

It looks like Founders Ministries has begun a blog. “Our goal is to provide a forum for analyzing and discussing issues that relate to the work of biblical reformation in the churches throughout the Southern Baptist Convention and beyond. By “biblical reformation” we do not mean the promotion of a man, a system or a movement. We mean the ongoing re-formation of churches along biblical lines. A motto that arose out of the 16th century reformation recognizes this need. The reformers declared the need for “the church reformed, always reforming.” So it should be. Any church leader who does not see this need is simply naive. Another way to state it is that a church needs to be growing—always growing according to the Word of God. If the church growth movement had not so effectively co-opted such terminology we could just as readily use it. But today, “church growth” is measured almost exclusively in terms of numbers and statistics, a standard to which 2 Peter 3:18 will not submit.”

Happy Birthday, Bill.

July 13, 2005

AwardNancy just sent me the following press release:


Wednesday, July 13, 2005 — As America continues its heated debates on the role of religion in public life, Nancy Pearcey’s highly acclaimed book TOTAL TRUTH: Liberating Christianity From Its Cultural Captivity (Crossway) has won the 2005 ECPA Gold Medallion Award for best book in the category of “Christianity and Society.”

Pearcey, a former agnostic, has been heralded as “one of the few female intellectuals in evangelicalism” (The Evangelical Outpost). She is also a musician and a homeschooling mother. The prestigious award was announced at a celebration dinner held in Denver, Colorado, on Monday, July 11, 2005. The ECPA reports that more than “1,000 publishers, retailers, authors, and industry colleagues” attended the evening’s festivities.

“There is much to be thankful for in receiving this award,” Pearcey said. “It is a positive sign that a ‘rock-the-boat’ book like TOTAL TRUTH could find a base of support among the grassroots of evangelical publishing.”

“The book rocks secular boats because it argues that God is a public figure,” Pearcey explained. “It shows why secularists cannot simply relegate religion to the private realm of faith and feelings, which is the most common way of stripping Christianity of its power to challenge and redeem the whole of culture.”

“But the book may also rock some evangelical boats,” Pearcey said, “because it challenges a tendency to allow essentially secular principles to shape the way we do business in Christian circles, which hurts many people who are seeking authentic relationships and answers to life’s questions.”

Pearcey, who became a Christian at L’Abri Fellowship in the early 1970s, said, “I am thankful to Francis and Edith Schaeffer, who opened the door to doing this kind of worldview analysis.”

Celebrating the news about TOTAL TRUTH are voices from the U.S. and Europe:

“Delighted to hear about the Gold Medallion. Nancy’s book TOTAL TRUTH is one of our top books here in Christian Heritage-Cambridge.”

Director, Christian Heritage-Cambridge
son-in-law of Francis and Edith Schaeffer
Cambridge, England.

TOTAL TRUTH is the “most important single book to have come out of the U.S.A. in recent years because it tackles the root-level misunderstandings which stop people from seeing that the message of Jesus brought, and still brings, individual liberties, social transformation, political freedom, and scientific, technological and economic progress.”

Chairman, Trinity Forum-Europe
Executive Director at Wolfsberg (subsidiary of UBS)
Zurich, Switzerland

“Congratulations to [editor-husband Rick] and Nancy!”

author, syndicated columnist
Cape Girardeau, Mo.

“Nancy Pearcey has performed an important service to evangelicals in TOTAL TRUTH, and her Gold Medallion Award testifies that her kind is not yet extinct.”

author, syndicated columnist
Washington, D.C., area

Nancy Pearcey is the Francis A. Schaeffer Scholar at the World Journalism Institute, where she teaches a worldview course based on the study guide edition of TOTAL TRUTH. After earning an M.A. from Covenant Theological Seminary, she pursued further graduate work in philosophy at the Institute for Christian Studies in Toronto. Since 1977, she has been a pioneering thinker and writer on the interface between worldview and contemporary issues, such as modern science, and she is currently a Senior Fellow at the Discovery Institute.

OFFICIAL WEBSITE: www.totaltruthbook.com.

My congratulations go to Nancy and Rick. This award could not have gone to a nicer couple or for a better book. I am glad to see this book receiving more of the recognition it so richly deserves.

If you have not yet bought the book, it’s time:

July 05, 2005

Do you listen to Christian music? Do you love Christian music? Have you listened to Christian music since Keith Green’s hair was cool and since Petra actually sold albums? Do you like to write about the music you listen to?

If so, I have a project you may just be interested in. Drop me a note (ie an email) if you’re interested and I’ll tell you more.

July 04, 2005

My “to-read” shelf contains close to 50 books at this very moment. Now you know why I always have my nose stuck in a book - I’m just trying to keep up! A few minutes ago the FedEx guy showed up at my door with a little package (remember that I live in Canada so FedEx is working full-force today since we’re not exactly celebrating Independence Day). The package contained my review copy of Rick Warren and the Purpose that Drives Him, which was written by Richard Abanes, who you may recognize as a prolific poster in the forums at this site.

I don’t have time to read the book this morning, much as I would like to, as I have several web sites that need my attention. But I did give the book the once-over I give all my books. I begin by reading the back cover to get an overview of what the publisher thinks this book is all about. Then I read the endorsements, which in this case didn’t take long as the book has only one (James K. Walker, President of Watchman Fellowship). Then I check what Bible translation the author defaults to (not sure why I do this - just habit I guess). This book uses the KJV by default and there is also a copyright notice for The Message which makes me assume Abanes will be addressing what appears to be one of Warren’s favored “translations.”

The next thing I do is to skim the chapter headings. It looks like the book kicks-off with some background about The Purpose Driven Life, turns to an interview with Warren, and then begins the apologetic work. I very quickly skimmed the interview with Warren and had to laugh at one question (sorry Richard, but it’s funny!). Abanes asked, “Do you advocate watering down the Gospel to cater to seekers?” I don’t think even Robert Schuller would answer that affirmatively! It’s a loaded question (“water down,” “cater”). I understand what Abanes was getting at, but it’s not the kind of question which is going to address the concerns of people like, well, myself.

The final part of skimming a book is to read through the endnotes and bibliography. Abanes references a wide variety of sources. Many of the people who have written a critique of Warren have received some attention: James Sundquist, Nathan Busenitz, John MacArthur, T.A. McMahon, Greg Koukl and even yours truly. So it seems Abanes was thorough.

Anyways, I have 50 pages of another book to get through and will then turn to Rick Warren and the Purpose that Drives Him. I’m looking forward to it. After I have read and digested the book I will be conducting an interview with the author, so if you’ve got questions you’d like to address to Abanes, feel free to email me with them. As always, a review of the book will be forthcoming. The book weighs in at only 127 pages, so it should not take too long to read.

July 03, 2005

Live 8 only just barely registered on my radar screen. My apathy towards the event is, well, pretty well complete. But some people in the blogosphere have had good things to say.

Phil Johnson says, “Do sane people really think Western materialism, self-conceit, and celebrity-worship can be leveraged to solve the problem of African poverty?” Apparently they do. For one day overpaid, oversexed and overwhelmingly arrogant people get together to scold us for not doing all we can do to combat poverty. They snap their fingers every three seconds to remind us that a child in Africa dies of povery every three seconds. I didn’t realize anyone died of poverty, but apparently that’s what Will Smith would have us believe. Good-looking people go on camera to bemoan the fact that we do so little. Then they climb back into their private jets and go back their multi-million dollar homes, content in their love for humanity. It’s pathetic. And I’m still apathetic.

The guys over at Junkyard blog chime in as well.

It seems that I seldom agree with Bill Hybels. But in Courageous Leadership he talks about his growing conviction that “the church of Jesus Christ is the hope for the world.” Bingo. Not rockstars. Not rappers. Not extravagent concerts held every two decades. The hope for the world is in the power of God working through His people. Want to change the world? Good. Then go and be the church. Be the body of Christ and watch the world change.

June 25, 2005

From Phil Johnson’s blog (still flavor of the day (or month) in the blogosphere): “Another of those infamous BlogSpotting posts is on its way tomorrow. Could be the last one ever. Watch for details to come.” And there was great rejoicing.

Now if we can get James White to stop trolling Catholic forums and posting lengthy responses to every ignorant schmuck that chooses to digitally voice his uninformed opinion, the Internet will be a significantly better place. Maybe enough so that Bob Ross will stop complaining about it.

Nah. Not likely.

You know, for a guy who once told me that forums are the most useless form on communication in the world, White certainly does spend a lot of time reading them and responding to guys with names like John6jmj. Guys who are probably fourteen years old and post responses in the forums between deathmatches in Quake. Guys who simply don’t have the nerve to actually call him and say something worthwhile.

And in case it’s not obvious, I have nothing but the utmost respect for all of the above-mentioned gentlemen (though I know a lot less about Bob than the other two). And Phil’s BlogSpotting articles aren’t so bad - I just like ribbing him about them.


June 24, 2005

To answer that rhetorical question, my friend Francis and his soon-to-be-wife do. We will be heading off shortly to witness it. Francis is a good friend whom I have known since I was just a young lad. He and my brother have long been good friends as well. And as if getting married wasn’t good enough, he also recently graduated from Westminster Seminary and will soon be seeking a call in the Orthodox Presbyterian Church.

It occurs to me that I don’t think I’ve ever met his fiancee.

The wedding is sure to bring me face-fo-face with people I have not met for many years, so that is always fun. It will also mark the first time in well over a year that I will have to wear a tie. That is not so much fun.

I should also run into a few of the readers of this site. Regular reader and occasional forum poster drareg (Gerard) is in the wedding party. And I’m quite sure there will be a few others. After the wedding I’ll be hanging out with my friend Chad VanDixhoorn whom I have not seen in far too long. Chad has been overseas earning his doctorate in England. He is also heading up the Westminster Assembly Project. Those of you who were at the PCA General Assembly last week heard him talking about this project.

Anyways, that is my afternoon all planned out. For those who don’t drop by the site over the weekend, I wish you a blessed weekend and a relaxing Lord’s Day. As for the rest of you, who are obviously gluttons for punishment, I’m planning to post some book and DVD reviews over the weekend.