Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

THIS & THAT and Favorite Quotes of the Week

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  • Should I Get My 12 Year Old a Smartphone? Should parents give their preteen and teenage children electronic devices, like smartphones and tablets that have unrestricted internet access? In this important episode of the podcast, Russell Moore thinks through the wisdom of not giving our children over to the cyber wilderness.
  • The Difference Between Ethics and Morality.C. Sproul writes “The English word “ethic” or “ethics” comes from the Greek word ethos. The word “morals” or “morality” comes from the word mores. The difference is that the ethos of a society or culture deals with its foundational philosophy, its concept of values, and its system of understanding how the world fits together.”
  • Positive Purity. Tim Challies writes “Sexual purity has two components to it: the turning away and the turning toward, the stopping of one kind of behavior and the beginning of another.”
  • Sexuality and the Christian Faith: A Google Hangout with Rosaria Butterfield. Watch Dr. Rosaria Butterfield to discuss sexuality, our culture’s objection to biblical morality, and what it looks like for Christians to speak the truth in love. Dr. Butterfield is a pastor’s wife, mother, homeschool teacher, and author of The Secret Thoughts of an Unlikely Convert and Openness Unhindered.
  • Boycotting gay weddings? A Distorted Take on an Important Book. Denny Burk looks at how the media has jumped on a few paragraphs from Albert Mohler’s forthcoming book We Will Not Be Silent, to be published October 27.
  • The Tolerance Jesus Will Not Tolerate. Kevin DeYoung writes “Christians cannot be tolerant of all things because God is not tolerant of all things. We can respect differing opinions and try to understand them, but we cannot give our unqualified, unconditional affirmation to every belief and behavior. Because God doesn’t. We must love what God loves. That’s where Ephesus failed. But we must also hate what God hates. That’s where Thyatira failed.”
  • 3 Questions to Detect Sports Idolatry. David A. Prince writes “The Christian with a rightly ordered, Christ-centered worldview is uniquely positioned to enjoy athletic competition as a good gift from God. Nevertheless, we must be aware of the danger of rendering sports an idol rather than a gift.”
  • Can the Devil Read My Mind?C. Sproul writes “I don’t see any reason to believe that he could read your mind or read mine. Again, that may not necessarily be a divine power. He may be able to do it, but I have no reason to believe that he can.”
  • You are Not Enslaved to Your Past. John Piper writes “Christianity means change is possible. Deep, fundamental change. It is possible to become tender-hearted when once you were callous and insensitive. It is possible to stop being dominated by bitterness and anger. It is possible to become a loving person no matter what your background has been.” This article is one of 120 daily devotions in John Piper’s devotional book A Godward Life: Savoring the Supremacy of God in All of Life. A new hardback edition is now available.
  • The Only FOMO to Fear. Tony Reinke writes “Missing the boat, missing the bus, missing a spouse, missing a promotion, missing a stock tip, or missing a date with friends — we have all experienced missing out. And that’s why the fear of missing out (FOMO) is a universal experience in the human condition.”
  • Contentment. In this “Minute with Maxwell” John Maxwell talks about what contentment means.


  • Early Warning Signs of Adult Onset Calvinism. Stephen Altrogge writes “approximately 1 out of every 4 Christians will encounter adult onset Calvinism (commonly known as AOC) during their life, either personally or in someone close to them. It can be a scary thing to encounter, especially if you’re not familiar with the symptoms. The person you once knew and loved is suddenly a completely different person.”
  • There’s More to Calvinism than the Five Points of Calvinism. David Murray’s helpful series last week started with this article. He writes “The five points of Calvinism did not originate with John Calvin, they were not the sum total of his teaching – there’s much more to Calvinism than the “Five Points of Calvinism” – and TULIP is a relatively recent flower.”
  • An Organic Journey Towards the Doctrines of Grace. In two minutes, Trip Lee talks about his organic journey towards the doctrines of grace (Calvinism or Reformed theology) and how he saw these doctrines in the Scriptures before he read them in any other book.


  • Reignite Your Prayer Life. Don Whitney, author of Praying the Bible, writes “How’s your prayer life? Hardly any question — unless perhaps if someone asks about your evangelistic efforts — can cause more chin-dropping, foot-shuffling embarrassment for Christians than asking about their prayer life.”
  • A Prayer for Setting Our Hearts Destination. Here’s our prayer of the week from Scotty Smith.
Doug Michael's Cartoon of the Week

Doug Michael’s Cartoon of the Week

Favorite Quotes of the Week 

  • Christ has taken our nature into heaven to represent us, and has left us on earth with his nature to represent him. John Newton
  • “He who departs from evil makes himself a prey.” (Isaiah 59:15) Bakers. Photographers. County clerks. You? John Piper
  • Joy comes not only from resting in God’s love for us, but also in showing love to others. Paul Miller
  • A marriage would weaken if you only talked to your spouse while in the car (or in texts). It will do the same to your relationship w/ God. Paul Miller
  • It is in getting to know my Bible that I get to know Jesus. Alistair Begg
  • God does not exist to make sure that we are happy and fulfilled. Rather, we exist to glorify and to enjoy Him forever. Michael Horton
  • The root cause of anxiety is a failure to trust all that God has promised to be for us in Jesus. John Piper
  • To be known by God is the highest goal of human existence. R.C. Sproul
  • Don’t be surprised at having to re-forgive. Healing relational pain is more a process than a one-time event. Scotty Smith
  • In the end, the church will either declare the truth of God’s Word, or it will find a way to run away from it. Albert Mohler
  • Jesus cannot be just liked. His claims make us either kill him or crown him. Tim Keller
  • The fear of the Lord tends to take away all other fears. Sinclair Ferguson
  • The conviction that Christian doctrine matters is one of the most important growth points of the Christian life. Sinclair Ferguson
  • The foundation of our love for the Lord lies in the recognition of His holiness, our sinfulness, and His grace. Sinclair Ferguson
  • “Safe? … Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.” C.S. Lewis
  • We should let Scripture interpret us more than we interpret Scripture. Tim Keller
  • The Imperfect Pastor by Zack Eswine might be the most helpful and profound book I’ve read in years. If you’re in pastoral ministry grab a copy. Matt Chandler
  • There are heroes who never receive the limelight of their generation. More times than not, a hero is revealed, not by applause, but by God. Zack Eswine
  • You don’t want to leave a legacy of: “He played it safe, he survived, he made it through.” Francis Chan
  • God will honor the preaching that honors Christ, but abandon the pulpit that abandons Him. Steven Lawson
  • I’m grateful not only for the good things in life but the hard things knowing all things in God’s sovereignty work together for my good. Burk Parsons
  • If your heart doesn’t ache for people who don’t know Christ, you may not know Christ yourself. Burk Parsons
  • When Satan tells me I am a sinner he comforts me immeasurably, since Christ died for sinners. Martin Luther
  • If you can explain what is happening in a church, apart from the sovereign act of God, it is not revival. Martyn Lloyd-Jones  
  • Biblical orthodoxy without compassion is surely the ugliest thing in the world. Francis Schaeffer
  • There’s a throne in each life big enough for only one. Christ may be on that throne, or money may be. But both cannot occupy it. Randy Alcorn
  • Jesus has thrilled and satisfied the heart and mind of the Father for eternity. He must be all-sufficient for you. Michael Reeves

Lloyd-Jones Quote

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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