Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

THIS & THAT and Favorite Quotes of the Week

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  •  Why are Women More Anxious Then Men? David Murray writes “Here are some further reasons why I think women have twice as much anxiety than men.” He also shares some I recommend books for dealing with anxiety and links to about sixty online articles he’s collected over the years on this subject.
  • One of the Greatest Questions We Can Ever Ask. Derek Thomas writes “How is it possible for a just God to justify a sinner? That is one of the greatest questions we can ever ask.”
  • What is Self-Discipline? Steven Lawson writes “If we are to exercise self-control, we must relinquish the control of our lives to Jesus Christ. Here is a paradox of the Christian life: We must give up the control of self if we would gain self-control. May God enable us to exercise self-discipline, an absolute necessity for victory over sin.”
  • Do You Think About Your Death? Francis Chan writes “Whenever I see a dead body, I inevitably think, That will be me soon. Then all sorts of uncomfortable thoughts follow.”
  • Christian, Do You Love God’s Law? Sinclair Ferguson writes “When Jesus said, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments” (John 14:15), He was only echoing the words of His Father. Actually, it is simple, yet all-demanding.”
  • Greater Threat to the Church: From the Outside or Inside? Collin Hanson writes “Does the greater threat to the church in the West come from the inside or the outside? How you answer determines your prescription for what ails our age. I posed this question and others to Ross Douthat, an acclaimed op-ed columnist for The New York Timesand author of the book Bad Religion: How We Became a Nation of Heretics.”   
  • The Gospel of Jesus’ Wife? When Sensationalism Masquerades as Scholarship. Albert Mohler writes ““The Gospel of Jesus’ Wife?” Not hardly. This is sensationalism masquerading as scholarship. Nevertheless, do not miss what all this really represents — an effort to replace biblical Christianity with an entirely new faith.”

CHRISTIAN LIVING:lion and lamb gentle and strong

  •  The Gentleness and Fierceness of Christ. Ian Hamilton writes “All this is simply to say, make sure the Jesus you follow and confess is the Jesus of Holy Scripture. The full orbed Jesus. The Jesus who is both gentle and threatening. Not a Jesus who allows you to live any which way you choose.”
  • God-Centered Prayer. Steven Lawson writes “Unfortunately, prayer today has often devolved into a self-centered pursuit that is fueled by the fulfilling of one’s indulgences.”
  • Don’t Neglect Dating Your Spouse and Investing in Your Marriage. Randy Alcorn writes “Marriage is the heart of the home. A good marriage precedes good parenting, and no amount of good parenting compensates for a poor marriage. And one of the best ways to have a good, strong marriage is by spending quality time together.”
  • How to Avoid the Worst Form of Failure. Tim Challies writes “Don’t we all live with this fear that we will succeed at the lesser things in life while failing at the greater things?”
  • A Theology of Summer Vacations. John Piper writes “We work to advance God’s saving kingdom in a fallen world, and that is true whether we are in secular work or so-called Christian work. Vacations and sabbaths and days off and nights of sleep are recreations of creative, happy, fruitful labor for the advancement of Christ’s kingdom in the world, whether you are in a secular work or not.”
  • How to Help the Suicidal. Regarding the issue of suicide, Josh Squires writes “But we cannot let our fear and sadness over a dark and difficult issue keep us from moving toward one another. Therefore, it is with clarity, compassion, and conviction that we must speak to this terrible reality.”
  • Our Best Life Yet to Come: The New Earth, Our Eternal Home. Randy Alcorn writes “Whether it’s coaching a team, mentoring young people, mowing a widow’s lawn, standing up for unborn children, working for racial reconciliation, going on short-term missions trips, or giving a large portion of your income to missions or inner-city work—If you’re doing it through Christ’s power you’re bringing a foretaste of the coming New Earth to this current, hurting Earth.”
  • Seven Biblical Truths That Can Bring Us Great Happiness. Randy Alcorn writes “I’ve blogged about six false expectations we can have that will diminish our happiness. So what truths should raise our expectations of happiness? Here are seven worth focusing on.”
  • Trusting, Resting and Rejoicing in the God of Hope. Scotty Smith prays “May your peace rule in our hearts as we wait for the sure-and-certain fulfillment of our hope.”


  • 2017 Ligonier National Conference. John MacArthur has been added to the already impressive speaker list for the 2017 Ligonier National Conference. This is MacArthur’s first appearance at the conference in many years.  The theme of the conferences is “The Next 500 Years: Reformation 500 and Beyond”.
Courtesy of World Magazine

Courtesy of World Magazine

GREAT RESOURCES:Resurrection Life in suffering

  • 2016 Gospel Coalition Women’s Conference Audio/Video. The Gospel Coalition 2016 Women’s Conference has released all of the audio and video from their June 16-18 event held in Indianapolis. More than 7,000 women from all 50 states and 40 countries gathered together to study 1 Peter.  The conference, “Resurrection Life in a World of Suffering,” sought to show who we are in Christ and how we are to live as redeemed sojourners. Along with the seven main plenary sessions, there were more than 40 workshops and 30 focus gatherings led by speakers addressing topics including discipleship, sexual identity, abortion, mentoring, sexual abuse, raising children, faith and work, and more.
  • The Main Message of Your Bible. Bryan Chapell writes “The Bible declares its main message right at the dawn of human history: After God made all things “good,” everything went bad as a consequence of the evil that entered the world through human sin. In order for everything to be made right again, God designed a plan to rescue humanity and the broken world from sin’s corruptions.”
  • #AskRC Live Twitter Event: June 2016. On June 23, R.C. Sproul answered questions on Twitter. Check out the questions and his answers.
  • God’s Peculiar Glory: How We Know the Bible is True. In this message delivered in Houston, John Piper states “So what I would like to do in our time together is help you see how your confidence in the Scriptures can be unshakable — not because you are stubborn or strong-minded, but because there is a reasonable and warranted ground for this confidence.”


  • A Christian Response to Terrorism: An Interview with R.C. Sproul. Listen to this interview with R.C. Sproul of Ligonier Ministries, who have longtime called the Orlando area home. Dr. Sproul discusses the Christian understanding and response to terrorism.
  • How Christians Can Bear Gospel Witness in an Anxious Age. Tim Keller and John Inazu write “The audacity of Christian hope is that Jesus Christ came into the world, and is reconciling all things to himself. He is both the subject and object of our confidence, and as generations of saints who have come before us have testified in word and in deed, he is sufficient. It is with that hope and that confidence that we engage in the world in an anxious age.”Chick Fil-A
  • This is America’s Favorite Fast Food Restaurant. Kathryn Vasel writes “Chick-fil-A is the highest ranking fast food restaurant in the country for customer satisfaction, according to the American Customer Satisfaction Index Restaurant Report 2016.”
  • Online Friendships Are Not Enough. Phillip Holmes writes “Online friendships can be great blessings when placed in their proper perspectives, but perilous when they replace local community and the local church.”
  • 21 Questions with Barronelle Stutzman. Watch this three-minute video with the Washington florist sued by a gay man, a friend and client of almost a decade, who was outraged by her refusal to do the flowers for his same-sex wedding.
  • Seven Lessons from Europe. John Piper and his wife recently returned from three weeks in Poland, Switzerland, and Italy, where his task in each setting was to give expositions of Scripture. He shares “seven experiences that linger in our minds, and are bearing fruit for the way we do ministry.”
  • The People vs. the System of This World. Watch this less than two-minute excerpt from the 2015 Ligonier National Conference in which Kevin DeYoung reminds us that we are to love the people of this fallen world while rejecting the system of this fallen world.


  • Providence vs. Naturalism. In this brief video except from C. Sproul’s Foundations teaching series, R.C. Sproul contrasts the biblical view of providence with naturalism.
  • All Things New: The Return of Christ. As I re-listen to the messages from the 2016 Ligonier National Conference, I recently listened to a wonderful message from Michael Reeves on the Resurrection – All Things New: The Return of Christ. Here’s a description: “The gospel reminds us that we are pilgrims traveling from this world to that which is to come. Jesus promised His disciples that He would one day return to bring them to a place that He prepared for them. It is a place where all things are made new, free of sin and sorrow. As Christians, we seek not fame or fortune but a heavenly city whose builder and maker is God. In this session, Dr. Michael Reeves provides an overview of the future hope we have as Christians when Christ returns to establish the new heaven and new earth.”
  • R.C. Sproul on the Ubiquity of God’s Glory in Creation. Watch this three-minute video clip from R.C. Sproul’s teaching series Moses and the Burning Bush in which he discusses the ubiquity (the state of being everywhere all the time) of God’s glory in creation.
  • The Essence of the Calvinistic Life. Sinclair Ferguson writes “The essence of the Calvinistic life is living in such a way as to glorify God.”
  • Lord, Do it Again! Revival is not something that Reformed Christians talk a lot about any longer. Watch this thirteen minute video of Tim Keller, Nancy DeMoss Wolgemuth and Collin Hansen in this roundtable discussion push back against the fear of revival, especially among gospel-centered Christians.


Doug Michael’s Cartoon of the Week

Doug Michael’s Cartoon of the Week


  • It’s precisely because of the extraordinary hope we have of heaven that we can embrace the ordinary lives God gives us here now. Michael Horton
  • Satan loves to try to pamper us with temporal comforts. God loves to strip them away so we’ll find ultimate comfort in him alone. Burk Parsons
  • The Christian’s life is to be a thing of truth and also a thing of beauty in the midst of a lost and despairing world. Francis Schaeffer
  • Sin has caused our affections to stray, propelling us to worship relationships, achievement, and work – everything but God. Tim Keller
  • True faith inevitably and necessarily bears fruit. C. Sproul  
  • The reality of eternity comes to all people. It will be either in glory with the Lord Jesus or in suffering in hell. Are you ready? (John 10). Steve Camp
  • Black, White, Asian, Hispanic, Semitic and unborn lives all matter. Charlie Daniels
  • Growth should be rapid where Jesus is the gardener and the Holy Spirit the dew from heaven. Charles Spurgeon
  • If you try to seize the day, the day will eventually break you. Seize the corner of his garment and don’t let go…He will reshape the day. Paul Miller

R.C. Quote (3)

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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