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A La Carte (January 19)

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The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with you. 

Westminster Books has a sale on the third volume of Jonathan Gibson’s devotional trilogy that follows the liturgical calendar.

There is yet again a small collection of Kindle deals for you.

Normalizing LGBTQ Pornography

This is very troubling. Hopefully you have one of your four monthly articles from World to read it. “Pornhub is coming for our children and our men.  A recent undercover investigation reveals the nation’s largest pornography distributor welcomes pre-teens and attempts to sway straight men toward LGBTQ pornography through gradual integration of unorthodox material.”

Dear ChatGPT Users

Ashley Kim asks some thought-provoking questions about ChatGPT and the potential cost of committing ourselves to use it. “I want to address Christians who have a casual relationship with ChatGPT―Christians like you, perhaps, who might not have any grand ambitions beyond maximizing the efficiency of drafting emails or curating search results. No big deal, right?”

The Gates of the City

T.M. Suffield looks at Revelation’s strange description of the New Jerusalem (e.g. the fact that it’s said to be a giant cube) and digs into its beautiful symbolism.

What Is the Most Important Thing Taught in the Bible?

Shane Rosenthal offers a perfect answer to a big question. “What do you think every Christian should place at the very top of their list? What biblical idea should be considered the thing of first importance?”

Digital Detox, Intentional Ignorance, and the Proximity Principle

I can’t deny that I’ve become skeptical that anyone successfully lives by such principles for long. Still, I appreciate what Seth Troutt says in this article and what he prescribes. “For Christians to thrive in the modern era, there are two spiritual disciplines we must adopt: Digital Detox (fasting from screens) and Intentional Ignorance (fasting from information).”

Burial vs Cremation

A couple of days ago, TGC published an article by Justin Dillehay that made the case that, while the Bible does not forbid cremation, burial better represents the Christian view of death and resurrection. See “Cremation or Burial: Does Our Choice Matter?” Stephen Kneale countered this with his perspective that the Bible offers us freedom on the matter. See “Cremation or burial: why I’m not convinced it matters nearly as much as some think.” This is a helpful pair of articles when considering an issue we all need to face.

Flashback: You Just Can’t Have It All

… though we know perfection is impossible, don’t we all sometimes still grow frustrated at the sheer messiness of Christian individuals and Christian churches? Don’t we all sometimes face the temptation to pack up and move on when our fellow believers act like the sinners they are?

Alas! for those who while trying to prove that Jonah was never swallowed of a whale, themselves get swallowed of the whale of unbelief, which digests but never ejects its victims.

—De Witt Talmage

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    A La Carte (February 22)

    A La Carte: Ice, wind, and unanswered prayers / Was it all a waste? / Prepping for the impending apocalypse / The best analogy for the Trinity / Getting to stop by woods on a snowy evening / Bible translation and AI / and more.

  • Like an iPhone

    Like an iPhone, Only Much More So

    Can I confess something to you? There’s one thing Aileen does that really bugs me. We will be talking together and enjoying one another’s company. But then, as we chat, I’ll hear the telltale buzz of her phone. And I can tell that I’ve lost her. I can see it in the look on her…

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    A La Carte (February 21)

    A La Carte: When cultural tailwinds become cultural headwinds / Talking with kids about gender issues / Try to be more awkward / Life is more than mountaintop experiences / Tinder / Unpacking “separation of church and state” / and more.

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    A La Carte (February 20)

    A La Carte: How hell motivates holiness / The bond of love / How to love our friends in truth, even when it stings / The distorting power of the prosperity gospel / Thinking about plagues / and more.

  • A Difference Making Ministry for Any Christian

    A Difference-Making Ministry for Any Christian

    The experience of preaching is very different from the front than from the back, when facing the congregation than when facing the preacher. The congregation faces one man who is doing his utmost to be engaging, to hold their attention, and to apply truths that will impact their hearts and transform their lives.

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    A La Carte (February 19)

    A La Carte: Courageous pastors or overbearing leaders? / Jesus didn’t diss the poor / 8 qualities of true revival / Why don’t you talk about the sermon? / The idol of competence / The danger of inhospitality / and more.