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Weekend A La Carte (June 27)

Today’s Kindle deals include some classics as well as commentaries by Stott and Kidner.

(Yesterday on the blog: 12 New and Notable Books for June 2020)

Systemic Racism, God’s Grace, and the Human Heart: What the Bible Teaches About Structural Sin

Albert Mohler has a helpful look at systemic racism. “Sin corrupts every institution and every system because, one way or another, sinful human beings are involved. This means that laws, policies, habits, and customs are also corrupted by sin. We are called to do everything within our power to expunge sin from the structures of our society. Christians know that the justice of God demands that we do so. At the same time, we cannot accept that the structural manifestations of sin are the heart of the problem. No, the heart of the problem is found in the sinfulness of the individual human heart.”

Ahistorical Activism

This one comes from First Things. “Today’s iconoclasm should trouble us. Not because it judges the past, but because it fails to uphold any permanent ideals against which the past or the present might rightly be judged. If anything, the movement goes out of its way to smash traditional symbols of moral authority and repositories of moral wisdom.”

Train Up a Child? (Video)

Robert Godfrey speaks briefly and helpfully on Proverbs 22:6.

Well, That Didn’t Last Long

I have seen the same thing locally—the unity that came with the beginning of the crisis has already given way to sniping and fighting. “I don’t think I’m responsible for policing the opinions of my neighbours but I do feel responsible for having started the group, and am sorry that it is now splintering. My aim was to strengthen the neighbourhood, not create a platform for new animosities to form.”

Christians Behaving Badly

“Most of us – at least here in the US – have been locked away for three months. The use of social media has been one of the ways people have been able to ‘get out of the house.’ But as we start to regather into our congregations I wonder if turmoil that began on social media will carry over into regular church life.” I expect that in many cases it will.

What the Tentmaking Business Was Really Like for the Apostle Paul

What was tentmaking like for the Apostle Paul? And how big a role did that play in his life? Here’s a brief attempt at an answer.

Small Decisions Matter: Discernment for Everyday Life

Here’s Ed Welch on day-by-day discernment. “This way or that way? Right in God’s eyes or right in our own eyes? Two paths. One is self-destructive; one is filled with life. Our lives are now brimming with daily judgments of ourselves and our world. These judgments determine our course and carry eternal consequences.”

Flashback: Mark Zuckerberg Covers His Webcam. Should You?

In an age of ubiquitous data collection, there is wisdom in taking some basic measures of self-protection and self-preservation.

He who prepares not for his dying-day runs the hazard of losing his immortal soul.

—Thomas Brooks

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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.

  • Why Those Who Seem Most Likely to Come, Never Come At All

    Why Those Who Seem Most Likely to Come, Never Come At All

    It is something we have all observed at one time or another and something we have all wondered about. Why is it that those who seem most likely to come to Christ so often reject him? Why is it that those hear the boldest invitations and who have the greatest opportunities so commonly turn away?…

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    Weekend A La Carte (February 17)

    A La Carte: Think you’re immune to adultery? / One of the most hopeful reminders about sanctification / What do we do with dreams and visions? / Have you ever asked your church elders to visit and pray for you? / The neurodivergent believer / Preaching advice for busy pastors / and more.

  • Free Stuff Fridays (Open the Bible)

    This week’s Free Stuff Friday is sponsored by Open the Bible. They encourage you to enter to win a series of books from Open the Bible and Pastor Colin Smith! Included in the giveaway are: For All Who Grieve by Pastor Colin Smith. Written with compassion and understanding, yet honestly facing the difficult questions that…