Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

THIS & THAT and Favorite Quotes of the Week

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This and That


  • Learning the Art of Contentment and Discontentment. Colin Smith writes “Love Christ more and you will love money less. When you have less you will find yourself saying, “I am learning to be content. Christ is more to me than all the world.” When you have more you will say, “How can I use what I have to serve Christ? Because Christ is more to me than all the world.””
  • Seven Subtle Symptoms of Pride. Fabienne Harford points out seven sneaky symptoms of the infection of pride from Jonathan Edwards.
  • Cosmic Treason. Man did not remain in the state of righteousness in which he was created. He sinned against God and fell, becoming dead in sin and defiled in every faculty of soul and body. Most people today deny this fact, believing that man is by nature good. In this message from the Ligonier Ministries 2009 Leadership Conference, Pillars of the Christian Faith, R.C. Sproul looks at how it is incumbent upon faithful Christian leaders therefore to teach the truth about the Fall and about the true nature and evil of sin.
  • Do Not Underestimate a Defeated Devil. Jon Bloom writes “It is a dangerous thing to underestimate the power of spiritual evil and to overestimate our ability to withstand it.”
  • A Prayer for Greater Freedom from Resentment. Here’s another wonderful prayer from Scotty Smith.
  • Texting and Driving Is Stupid. Tony Reinke writes “Talking on the phone while driving makes you 4-times more likely to get into an accident. Texting while driving makes you 23-times more likely to get into an accident. Christians are called to stop texting-and-driving not just because it’s illegal. More importantly, texting-and-driving is a form of neighbor-neglect, and neighbor-neglect is a sin against our God that calls for intentional measures of self-control.”
  • 6 Bad Reasons to Check Your Phone in the Morning. Kevin Halloran discusses a recently recent episode of John Piper’s “Ask Pastor John” podcast, called “Why Not to Check Your Phone in the Morning“. In that episode Piper shares six reasons we are prone to go to our phone first thing in the morning. Each of the six reasons are drawn from motives that can quickly become sinful and hinder desire to serve others and obey God.
  • 5 Ways Mission Agencies Stretch the Truth. Darren Carlson writes about how some mission agencies exaggerate statistics to recruit staff, missionaries, and donors.An Embarrassing Week for Christians Sharing Fake News. Ed Stetzer shares three things to do to fix the false rumor you spread online.
  • 5 Tips for Spotting Fake News. Bob Smietana shares these five tips.
  • How Should Christians Comment Online? Jon Blooms helpfully shares how and when we should comment online.
  • Creation’s Groans Are Not Meaningless. Tim Keller writes “We know we’re not what we one day will be and we don’t have now all that we one day will (Rom. 8:24). We know all our best days lie ahead and all our painful days will lie behind us then. And so, even on our worst days and in our hardest moments, we know this: It is worth it.”
  • How Should Christians Respond to Attacks and Insults? R.C. Sproul shares insights from Jonathan Edwards to keep in mind as we deal with the inevitable attacks and insults that come our way in this life.
  • Jesus Outside the LinesScott Sauls on Steve Brown, Etc. Scott Sauls, author of Jesus Outside the Lines: A Way Forward for Those Who Are Tired of Taking Sides (the next book Tammy and I will read together), was recently on the Steve Brown, Etc. podcast.
  • What’s Thrilling Them About Jesus. In this less than five-minute video, John Piper, Richard Coekin and Tim Keller talk about what’s thrilling them about Jesus at the moment.
  • 7 Gospel-Centered Principles for Protecting Your Marriage. Jim Newheiser writes “What can a couple do to preserve the joyful loving intimacy of their marriage? Consider these seven gospel-centered principles.”
  • Why I Love the Church. John MacArthur begins a short series on why he loves the church by stating that the church is being built by the Lord Himself.
  • The Blessing of Catechizing Our Children. Joel Beeke writes “God has given us a wonderful means of grace in catechizing our children. Yes, we need discipline and diligence to do it, but when we persevere, the rewards are sweet.”


  • Hole in One at the British Open. Playing in his first-ever British Open, 28-year-old Englishman Daniel Brooks hit arguably the best shot of the tournament in the second round last Saturday, making a hole-in-one at the par-3 11th.
  • If protecting your mind means changing some things that seem “innocent,” do it today. Tony Dungy


  • Wayward Pines. This summer we’ve been watching M. Night Shyamalan’s new television program Wayward Pines. It reminds me of Lost and Shyamalan’s 2004 film The Village. It includes a good cast, including Matt Dillon, a simply evil Academy Award winner Melisa Leo, and equally evil Terrence Howard, Carla Gugino, Toby Jones, Juliette Lewis and more.
  • Faceketball with Lebron James. Did you see Lebron James and Jimmy Fallon play this game recently on The Tonight Show?
  • From Minions to 3,2,1 Penguins to the bird from Up, somehow “Kevin” became the name for dumb cartoon characters. Mr. Bacon and I feel hurt. Kevin DeYoung
  • Words I will never get used to hearing: “Grandma just texted me and said…” Tim Challies
  • To win with money you must live on less than you make. Act Your Wage. You are not in Congress. Dave Ramsey


R. C. SproulR.C. Sproul

  • Congratulations to R.C. Sproul. Dr. Sproul celebrated 50 years in ministry on July 17.
  • Wheaton Staffer Announces Support for Gay Relationships. Denny Burk writes about Julie Rogers of Wheaton College. He states “This is a sad departure. I expect we will see many more like it in the days ahead. And each one will be an occasion for grief.”
  • What Does the Rainbow Mean for Gays? Dieudonne Tamfu writes “The next time you see a rainbow flag, think of this. One day soon, God’s glory, now seen dimly in the rainbow, will be fully revealed and draw everyone to worship. God’s glory will fill the earth. The glory of the LGBT movement will soon fade, but God’s glory and love toward those forgiven by faith in Jesus will last forever.”
  • How Wide the Divide: Sexuality at the Forefront, Culture at the Crossroads. Ravi Zacharias writes “There are three starting points that separate the historic Christian view from those who called for the legalizing of gay marriage that is now the law of the land, albeit by one vote.”


  • “A Lot of People Want Intact Hearts These Days” — Planned Parenthood, Abortion, and the Conscience of a Nation. Albert Mohler writing of the video showing the senior medical director of Planned Parenthood casually discussing the sale of organs from aborted babies, states “A nation that will allow this, will allow anything.”
  • Planned Parenthood and Evil. Jesse Johnson writes “So, why is Planned Parenthood evil? They are evil because they have roots in eugenics, they disproportionally target minorities, they use our tax dollars to do it, they make birth control difficult to get, they lobby for late-term abortions, and they do this all to make a profit.”
  • Doug Wilson offers a few thoughts and suggestions about the Planned Parenthood video.
  • Exposing and Engaging Planned Parenthood & Abortion. The Radical blog includes the shocking Planned Parenthood video and responses from some Christian leaders.
  • Planned Parenthood and the Atrocity of Corpse-Selling. Russell Moore writes of an undercover video showing Deborah Nucatola, Senior Director of Medical Services for the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, explaining how Planned Parenthood sells the parts of aborted unborn children. The video shows her describing how the heads of these babies come at the highest price.
  • Congratulating Planned Parenthood. Carl Trueman, who I enjoyed a class on B.B. Warfield at Covenant Seminary a few years back, writes “Planned Parenthood is not to be condemned. Surely it is to be congratulated for having so perfectly summarized the spirit of our age.
  • Planned Parenthood: How Much Longer? Jonathan Parnell writes “How much time will we give the abortion industry before they self-destruct? How much longer, America? How long are we going to let this go on? How many more conversations need to leak? How much more blood must be spilt? How many more body parts must be dismembered, packaged, and sold before we realize this whole thing is a nightmare? God, may it end soon.”
  • We Know They Are Killing Children—All of Us Know. Here’s a 2013 article from John Piper in which he writes “We have killed fifty million babies. And what increases our guilt as a nation is that we know what we are doing. Here’s the evidence (eleven points) that we know we are killing children.”
  • Why the President of Planned Parenthood’s Apology Doesn’t Work. The President of Planned Parenthood Cecile Richards released a video statement to defend her organization in the wake of the damning video that was released earlier this week. Denny Burk writes “The statement is awful on so many levels. But there are two glaring reasons that her statement falls short.”
  • Five Ways We Fight for Children. Phillips Holmes writes “Whether you’re single or married, young or old, we can all do something for the sake of the defenseless unborn and glorious truth of what we believe. What can we do?” He then offers five helpful things we can do.

Quotes of the Week

God and Theology:

  • If I know anything about the character of God after fifty years of ministry, I know that God hates abortion. R.C. Sproul
  • Every day we need our gaze redirected from ourselves to God. Sinclair Ferguson
  • The foundation of our love for the Lord lies in the recognition of His holiness, our sinfulness, and His grace. Sinclair Ferguson
  • Be assured, there is nothing new in theology except that which is false. Charles Spurgeon
  • There is an inherent blasphemy in seeking to add to what Christ Jesus in His dying moments declared to be finished. Charles Spurgeon
  • The devil is so subtle that he dominates man and persuades him at the same time that he is not being dominated. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
  • Temptations and occasions put nothing into a man, but only draw out what was in him before. John Owen

The Christian Journey:

  • No man can come to God but by an extraordinary revelation of the Spirit. John Calvin
  • I cannot have God in my heart if he is not in my head. Before I can believe in, I must believe that. R.C. Sproul
  • There will be no doubt about His having chosen you when you have chosen Him. Charles Spurgeon
  • You are either a Christian or you are not a Christian; you cannot be partly a Christian. You are either “dead” or “alive”; you are either “born” or “not born”. Dr. Martyn Lloyd-Jones
  • The ultimate test of our spirituality is the measure of our amazement at the grace of God. Dr. Martin Lloyd-Jones
  •  God’s love for you musn’t be measured by your present circumstances but by his eternal Christ. The sane choose grace over ease, every time. Scotty Smith
  • Worldliness is departing from God. Iain H. Murray
  • Look at your Facebook posts. Do they display fear, love or self-control? Pastor Duane Otto
  • What is right has to win the day over what we may see as rights. Ravi Zacharias
  • It is impossible to forgive someone if you feel superior to him or her. Tim Keller
  • You find that the things you let go of while following Jesus were the things that were going to destroy you in the end. Francis Chan
  • Our examples of enduring hardship are often more powerful than our stories of success and triumph. Mark Dever
  • All roads do indeed lead to God, the only question is, what will God say to you when you get there? Burk Parsons


  • Prayer should be done regularly, persistently, resolutely, and tenaciously at least daily, whether we feel like it or not. Tim Keller
  • Prayer is not optional for the Christian; it is required. R.C. Sproul

Author: Bill Pence

I’m Bill Pence – married to my best friend Tammy, a graduate of Covenant Seminary, St. Louis Cardinals fan, formerly a manager at a Fortune 50 organization, and in leadership at my local church. I am a life-long learner and have a passion to help people develop, and to use their strengths to their fullest potential. I am an INTJ on Myers-Briggs, 3 on the Enneagram, my top five Strengthsfinder themes are: Belief, Responsibility, Learner, Harmony, and Achiever, and my two StandOut strength roles are Creator and Equalizer. My favorite book is the Bible, with Romans my favorite book of the Bible, and Colossians 3:23 and 2 Corinthians 5:21 being my favorite verses. Some of my other favorite books are The Holiness of God and Chosen by God by R.C. Sproul, and Don’t Waste Your Life by John Piper. I enjoy music in a variety of genres, including modern hymns, Christian hip-hop and classic rock. My book Called to Lead: Living and Leading for Jesus in the Workplace and Tammy’s book Study, Savor and Share Scripture: Becoming What We Behold are available in paperback and Kindle editions on Amazon.

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