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Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

THIS & THAT and Favorite Quotes of the Week

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Courtesy of World Magazine

  • 116 Been Real: Lecrae, “White Evangelicalism,” and Hope.  John Piper writes “My response to Lecrae’s interview with the thoughtful women at Truth’s Table is mainly thankfulness and hope. Why would anyone care about my response? I don’t know that they would. But here’s why they might.”
  • Bible Study Fellowship Rewrites the Rulebook. Deborah Pardo-Kaplan writes “Jackson’s under-40s demographic is the main target of BSF’s recent BRIDGE initiative, a five-year campaign focused on drawing in Bible-friendly millennials but also unengaged ones through social media, new class models, and more studies. While the organization has always wanted to draw from all age groups, it has recently pivoted harder to reach more young adults, a generation BSF leadership feels is growing detached from religion, is less exposed to church, and is increasingly antagonistic toward Christianity and the Bible.”
  • 1 in 3 Protestant Churchgoers Personally Affected by Suicide. Bob Smietana writes “LifeWay’s study found three-quarters (76 percent) of churchgoers say suicide is a problem that needs to be addressed in their community. About a third (32 percent) say a close acquaintance or family member has died by suicide.”


  • How the Reformers Rediscovered the Holy Spirit and True Conversion. Sinclair Ferguson writes “Luther’s story is well known; Calvin’s less so. Luther was wrestling with the concept of the righteousness of God, and had come to hate it; Calvin had an immense thirst for a secure knowledge of God, but had not found it. While not the whole truth, there is something in the notion that Luther was looking for a gracious God while Calvin was seeking for a true and assured knowledge of him.”
  • The Ninety-Five Theses. Here are Martin Luther’s 95 Theses that triggered the Protestant Reformation in 1517.
  • What was the Reformation All About? 500 years ago, a German monk named Martin Luther started a protest that exploded into a worldwide movement. So, what was the Protestant Reformation all about? Discover the answer in this less than three-minute video narrated by Dr. R.C. Sproul.
  • Covenant Theologian: Heinrich Bullinger. Steven Lawson writes “Heinrich Bullinger (1504–1575) is regarded as the most influential second-generation Reformer. As the heir to Ulrich Zwingli in Zurich, Switzerland, he consolidated and continued the Swiss Reformation that his predecessor had started.”
  • What are the Five Solas. Check out this series of six Look at the Book labs from John Piper on the Reformation’s “Five Solas”.
  • The Solas of the Reformation. The White Horse Inn is running a 5-part series on the 5 Solas of the Reformation.
  • Ten Lasting Fruits of the Reformation. Joel Beeke writes “God sent forth the power of his Word in the Reformation of the sixteenth century. The Reformation served as a dynamic motivation and catalyst for change and progress wherever its influence reached. Many would credit Martin Luther as the driving engine that propelled the Reformation, but Luther said, “I did nothing; the Word did everything.” John Knox said, “God did so multiply our number that it appeared as if men had rained from the clouds.” How did the Reformation change the church and the world? Here are ten lasting fruits in which the Reformation made a significant difference.”

  • Am I a Backslidden Christian? In this five-minute video Jeremy Pierre states that assurance of salvation only comes through repentance over a long period of time.
  • Clothing Yourself in Humility Will Please Christ and Bring You Happiness. Randy Alcorn writes “Humility isn’t pretending that we’re unworthy because it’s the spiritual thing to do; it’s recognizing that we’re unworthy because it’s simply true. We are sinners who deserve judgment and don’t deserve God’s grace.”
  • Are You “Struggling” with Sin? Russell Moore writes ““Struggling” is good biblical language. We’re all either struggling with sin or surrendering to it. But we should use the language the way the Bible does. Instead we want all too often to use spiritual language for carnal ends. We should resist such temptation.”
  • Reverence Over Cool. Some believe Christians are on the wrong side of history on any number of fronts, and that we don’t quite “get” the cultural moment in which we live. Yet throughout Church history, the pursuit to honor God, seek righteousness, walk justly and love mercy has rooted faith no matter where the trend lines point. What might reverence look like in a society when respecting anything too much seems out of touch?  Watch this eleven- minute video from Trip Lee.
  • How to Fight When Your Mind Is Failing. John Piper writes “So what am I to do if I read my Bible in the morning, spot a promise that I know will be of great help in sustaining my faith at a moment of testing later in the day, but when the Bible reading is over, I have no recollection of the promise? How am I to defeat temptation by faith in God’s promise if I can’t remember the needed promise.”

  • Christian Assurance: Rome and Thomas Goodwin. Ian Hamilton writes “The Church of Rome wants to leave the believer tentative and uncertain. It wants to leave the child of God fearful and doubting, looking not to Christ and His finished work, but to the church and its priestly mediation. The Bible teaches otherwise.”
  • Calvinist. Tim Challies reviews the new documentary Calvinist by Les Lamphere.
  • Scripture: Our Inerrant and Infallible Authority. Stephen Nichols writes “Scripture is our only inerrant and infallible authority for faith and life. It is God’s Word, God breathed. Therefore, we must obey it. We must strive not to see it displaced and cast aside but to see it placed at the center of all that we do.”
  • The Glorious, if Sometimes Mysterious Good News of God’s Sovereignty. Scotty Smith prays “Heavenly Father, there are days when we, the clay, presume to tell you, the quintessential Potter, how to make pottery. There are stories for which we, your characters, want to dictate to you, the perfect Author, how the plot should change.”


  • John MacArthur Added to the Cast of The View. The Babylon Bee reports “In a move designed to finally give an on-air voice to the nation’s conservative Christians, producers of popular morning talk show The View confirmed Monday the addition of preacher and author John MacArthur to the show.”

I’ve enjoyed Doug’s cartoons for years. He recently told me about a new venture of his – Pastor Mugs. Check it out!

  • Jesus wants your obedience over your sacrifice. In other words, he wants you, not what you have to offer. Tim Keller
  • Abortion is government sanctioned murder for those inconvenienced by their children. Burk Parsons
  • Not only is the sin of man imputed to Christ, but the righteousness of Christ is transferred to us, to our account. C. Sproul
  • God doesn’t accept me just as I am, he loves me despite how I am, he loves me just as Jesus is. David Powlison
  • The true sacrifice to God is not something outside of us or belonging to us, nor something temporal…it is we ourselves, forever. Martin Luther
  • It was by the evil use of his free-will that man destroyed both it and himself. Augustine
  • Prayer must not be our chance work, but our daily business, our habit and vocation. Charles Spurgeon
  • Jesus, thank you for taking every burden we bring, catching every care we cast, and giving all the grace that we need. Scotty Smith
  • If you justify your past disobedience by your present happiness, you compound the sin, for you do not know what God would have done. John Piper

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.

One thought on “THIS & THAT and Favorite Quotes of the Week

  1. About the cartoon: YES!

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