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Headlines & Happenings: What Christians Talked About This Week

Here is a brief roundup of headlines and happenings there were topics of discussion and reflection among Christians this week. It was a relatively quiet week on the cusp of the holiday season, but a few common threads still rose to the top.

R.C. Sproul’s Memorial Service

It was a tremendous honor to be among the hundreds or even thousands attending R.C. Sproul’s memorial service. It was a fitting event to honor the legacy of our generation’s great reformer. His friends, including John MacArthur, paid tribute and shared memories while a veritable who’s who of Christian leaders filled the pews. The service was recorded and is available at Renewing Your Mind dedicated this week’s broadcasts to special broadcasts in which friends reflected on his life and legacy. James Faris wrote about the service’s ultra-appropriate opening words, while The Gospel Coalition included him in their article on faithful theologians and authors who died in 2017 after having helped shape evangelicals both in America and throughout the world.

The New Tax Laws

Most people take changes to the tax code in stride since they won’t really know what has changed until they file their 2018 income taxes in early 2019. Still, lots of people wrote and talked about it. Christianity Today said big families may get bigger tax bills under the new plan while pointing out that many Evangelicals are lauding the higher child tax credit and the preserved adoption credit. Retirement Stewardship took a look at the implications for those already retired or nearing retirement, saying, “Having some level of understanding about taxes and how they may affect you in retirement is part of wise retirement stewardship. Tax laws have always been notoriously complex, hence our heavy reliance on pricey software or tax professionals and preparers. Even if you use a professional, it’s a good idea to at least understand the basics.” Meanwhile, Gene Veith nicely rounded up some of the praise and critiques of the changes. The Babylon Bee took a swipe at the whole thing with this headline: Nation Furious Over Giving Government Less Of Their Money.

Christmas Is Coming

And, of course, Christmas is coming, so everyone was talking about the incarnation of the Son of God, and rightly so! Crossway offered 10 Things You Should Know about St. Nicholas while The Gospel Coalition offered 9 Things You Should Know about Christmas Traditions. Ligonier went with some classic R.C. Sproul in The Glory of Christmas while Desiring God shared God’s Indescribable Gift from John Piper. Reformation21 mined the origins and Christology of “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing.” Once again, the Bee also got in on the action with Santa Claus Converts To Calvinism, Moves Everybody To Naughty List.

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    A Deadly Foe of Spiritual Growth

    As we live out the Christian life and cooperate with the Holy Spirit through the precious means of grace, we face a number of foes, a number of enemies that mean to derail us from our pursuit of God. Of all those enemies, none may be more prevalent and none more deadly than complacency.

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    Weekend A La Carte (May 25)

    A La Carte: Don’t regret your past—redeem it / Parents, are you raising angry partisans? / You’re gonna lose everything / My husband and I keep fighting over the same thing / What are the “all things” I can do in Christ? / How are we handling generational differences? / Kindle deals / and more.

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    A La Carte (May 24)

    A La Carte: To sit in the threat of loss / The world cannot be gender blind / The missing years / Too much times / Finding freedom in God’s providence / The weighted vest of pastoral ministry / A micro course for pastors / and more.

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    A La Carte (May 23)

    A La Carte: How a wife entrusts her husband to God / Everyone has their own facts now / A better way to look at missions / The secret of contentment / Hospitality—a command for our joy / Are you barely hanging on? / and more.