It’s a double birthday here today, so happy sweet 16 to Michaela and happy something a bit beyond 16 to Aileen!
Today’s Kindle deals include a John Piper classic.
(Yesterday on the blog: Like a Ruined Castle)
Jared Wilson writes about ministry leaders being exposed in their sin. “Each time it happens, we get less adept at incredulity, less inclined to outrage and distress. We’re not happy about it, of course, but we are, sadly, getting used to it. Then the backward troubleshooting begins, the diagnosing of sicknesses long after the deaths. Ministry post-mortems tell us so much, but it would be great if we could see the falls coming. But can’t we?”
“If we are not angry about something today, then it seems we must lack virtue. How could the cultural dialogue surrounding gender, sexuality, abortion, racism, and countless other issues not lead to anger? You would almost have to be dead inside or extremely apathetic not to be triggered by these things.”
And in a similar vein, here’s Aaron Armstrong. “I have a confession: I am, on occasion, a doom-scroller. I can easily get sucked into reading nonsense Christians say about one another on Twitter. And I can get riled up really quickly, especially when I see people committing a sin specifically condemned in Scripture: ‘Do not speak against one another, brothers and sisters’ (James 4:11a).”
“It hurts to rip healthy, growing peaches off a tree, but if I don’t then I won’t have much edible fruit later in the summer. If the nutrients gathered by the roots are spread too thin across too much fruit, then each peach will end up small and will lack the necessary amount of sugar for that delicious, sweet taste. Not only that, but the sheer weight of so many peaches would break many of the branches.” As is so often the case, there’s something we can learn from nature.
“Good questions force us to identify treasures we often miss. Those treasures come in all forms. We see God’s holiness, our sinfulness, as well as God’s sovereignty and grace. We also discover his promises, our identity in him, and more. Therefore, when observing a text, here are five questions that have helped me. Over time, you’ll develop your own.”
I quite enjoyed reading the questions Timothy Paul Jones asks of students in the final exam of his Christian Apologetics class. They are based on memes, Metallica, Star Wars, and so on.
One of the hardest tasks for every Christian is to deeply believe and forever remember that we’ve been saved by grace. This is a lifelong challenge because our natural tendency is always to veer back to merit, to assume that we’ve been saved by something we are, something we’ve got, or something we’ve accomplished.
Death is half disarmed when the pleasures and interests of the flesh are first denied.—Richard Baxter