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A La Carte (December 25)

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Merry Christmas, friends. Today I’ve got an all-Christmas edition of A La Carte for you. Enjoy!

Today’s Kindle deals include a few excellent picks from Crossway themed around biblical theology and systematic theology.

(Yesterday on the blog: A Prayer for a Christian Husband and Wife To Pray Together)

With You

It is good to consider on Christmas that God is with us. And that’s exactly what Blake does here. “What are you currently going through? Has a trial overtaken you? Did an unexpected event capsize your heart and cause you to despair of life? Have you been doubting the Lord because of the death of a loved one? Whatever the occasion, the statement is true: Jesus is with you.”

Puppy Points and God’s Free Gifts

“When I was in the seventh or eighth grade I asked for a German Shepherd puppy for Christmas. I think I desired that gift more than any other I ever requested as a boy.
Dad and Mom told me that I could have a dog if I earned enough ‘puppy points.’” Vance Christie explains what this has to do with the gospel.

Advent and Expectations

“Have you ever noticed the relationship between your expectations and your contentment?” Casey McCall considers this question in light of Christmas.

Peace on Earth: Middle East?

“‘Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace among those with whom he is pleased!’  So said the angels to the shepherds at the first Christmas in a land that continues to suffer endless conflict.  ‘Peace in the Middle East’ is such a long-standing pressing need that it has become a cruel joke for a platform in beauty contest satires and other portrayals of impossible aspiration.”

The Christmas Syndrome: When Everyday Is Christmas No Day Will Be

Stephen makes an important point in this article. “Our post-religious age wants to make every day Christmas. Not to elevate all days to that deep, meaningful, purpose-filled day celebrating the greatest gift of all – the Incarnation – but to bring that day down to every other day. When every day is like Christmas then Christmas will be like every day.”

The Larger Longing

Abigail Rehmert writes about the longing that preceded the first Christmas and the longing that has happened since.

I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas, or Heaven

This article is meant especially for those who are overseas for Christmas (and/or for their loved ones).

Flashback: Today of All Days, Be of Good Cheer

On this day, I am pondering a lovely quote I found in one of De Witt Talmage’s sermons—a quote that calls us to not only be joyful at Christmas, but to see in Christmas proof that Christianity is a joyful faith. 

Look to Jesus this Christmas. Receive the reconciliation that he bought. Don’t put it on the shelf unopened. And don’t open it and then make it a means to all your other pleasures. Open it and enjoy the gift. Rejoice in him.

—John Piper

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    Redeeming Sex in Marriage

    Surely few things in this world are more mysterious than sex. Surely few things give such clear evidence that there must be more to them than the sum of their parts. On the one level, sex is a simple biological function that exists to populate the earth with human beings. On the other level, it…

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