Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

THIS & THAT and Favorite Quotes of the Week


  • What Does Washington Have to Do with Jerusalem? In this thirty-six minute video from the Gospel Coalition’s 2017 National Conference, Senator Ben Sasse speaks about humble politics.
  • Halladay Was Everybody’s Hero. Joe Posnanski offers a tribute to future Major League Baseball Hall of Fame pitcher Ray Halladay, who died recently in a plane accident.
  • 4 Reasons You Should Visit the Museum of the Bible. Joe Carter writes “The Museum of the Bible (MOTB) is a new 430,000-square-foot museum located near the National Mall and the nations’ Capitol in Washington, D.C. that officially opened to the public yesterday (November 17).”
  • Two Things That Should Be Obvious. Kevin DeYoung writes “First, men should honor women, not harass them; treat them as fellow image bearers, not sexual fantasies; and protect them, not perpetrate disgusting advances against them. Second, character cannot be compartmentalized.”



  • Pastor Monday Morning Press Conference. Pastor Trent talks about his performance and statistics from Sunday morning’s service and talks about how he can Improve.
  • The Nashville “Megachurch” That Embraced Gay Marriage Two Years Ago Has Cratered. Denny Burk writes “This is a sad but predictable result of a pastor who leads a church to apostatize from the Christian faith.”
  • Who Are the “Broken Wolves” in the Evangelical Community Today? Randy Alcorn writes “While I don’t feel comfortable naming names, there are quite a few people out there who talk about the personal difficulties they’ve experienced in life, including abuse, often abuse at the hands of church people. They tend to look at certain doctrines of the faith with great suspicion or even abhorrence. Among those is the substitutionary atonement of Christ. They say that if God’s wrath was poured out on Jesus for our sin, then that means that God’s redemptive plan is centered on an act of ‘divine child abuse.’”

  • No Epidural Strong Enough for Pain in Parenting. Nancy Guthrie writes “In one of the Bible’s most significant understatements, God said to the first mom: “In pain you shall bring forth children.” Surely no one who has ever been a parent would argue with it. Of course, it’s not referring merely to the physical pain of labor and delivery. At that point, the pain is just getting started.”
  • Becoming a Titus 2 Woman. Susan Hunt writes “Now, at age seventy-seven, I still wonder—have I become a Titus 2 woman yet? My inclination is to answer by evaluating my performance. Invariably, this leads to despair or arrogance depending on the numbers. Then the Spirit renews my mind as I read God’s Word. He shows me markers to help me think biblically.”
  • Don’t Be That Guy. Tony Reinke writes “In these dozens of ways, Paul paints the contours of the Christian life with darkened shadows of opposites — teaching us what to beby warning us what not to be. Again, the point of the list is not to find our Christian identity in what we’re not. Rather, our identity is rooted in what we are: united to our glorious Savior. Out of his work and power can we be told, “Don’t be that guy.” “Don’t be that gal.””
  • 8 Lies Christians Believe About Success. Emily T. Wierenga writes “I have spent my whole life trying to be successful. I thought it was what we were supposed to do. Worse than that, I thought success was the mark of a blessed Christian.”
  • When You Want to Change Your Husband. In this ten-minute video, Jackie Hill Perry, Jen Wilkin, and Nancy Guthrie discuss what a married woman should do when she wants to change her husband’s behavior.
  • Why Does Gossip Feel So Good? In this episode of the “Ask Pastor John” podcast, John Piper answers “I’m wondering how God defines gossip. What’s the difference between gossip and simply sharing information about another person? And how do I avoid becoming a gossiper?”

  • ANTHEM: Strategies for Fighting Lust. John Piper writes “When I say “lust” I mean the realm of thought, imagination, and desire that leads to sexual misconduct. So here is one set of strategies in the war against wrong desires. I put it in the form of an acronym, A N T H E M.”
  • Don’t Leave Your Husband for Her. Rosaria Butterfield writes “When you married your high school sweetheart at 19, you never once suspected you would be in this place. Now, at 39, after twenty years of marriage, you call yourself gay.”
  • ‘Thoughts and Prayers’ Mean More Than Critics Claim. Albert Mohler writes “When we say our “thoughts and prayers” are with them, we are not washing our hands of duty; we are expressing our heartfelt urgency to pray. We are affirming the power of God to save, to heal and to comfort. We are praying for human agents, doctors and first responders, friends and neighbors, to do what we cannot, prompted by the leading of God.”
  • Can the Word of God Really Ease My Pain? Vaneetha Rendall Risner writes “Because God is for me, in Christ, I can trust him. I can trust him with my weakness, with my fears, with my pain. And with that knowledge, I can face the day. With that knowledge, I can face anything.”
  • How to Be a Person of Integrity. Recently Tony Dungy sat down with Mark Merrill on his podcast to discuss the subject of integrity. On this podcast, he expounds on the subject and importance of having integrity.
  • Distinguishing Between Holy and Unholy Discontent. Eric Geiger writes “So how do you distinguish between the two? Here are three questions to help you discern if your discontentment is the holy or the unholy kind.”
  • Why Are So Many Silent? Greg Morse writes “Although we naturally spread the gospel of our football teams or favorite Netflix shows, we struggle to name the only name given to mankind by which sinners can be saved (Acts 4:12)”.
  • The Main Ingredient in Personal Growth. David Mathis writes “True stability in the Christian life comes not from planting two feet and holding fast, but from putting one foot in front of the other and moving forward, one grace-empowered step at a time. A stable Christian is a growing Christian.”
  • Desperate is Normal. Jon Bloom writes “That means a crucial and significant part of the normal Christian life is learning the humble discipline of casting our anxieties on God, who deeply cares for us.”


  • Do We Need Another Denzel Washington Christ Figure? Alicia Cohn writes that Denzel Washington “speaks like a Pentecostal preacher about both Christ and his new movie, Roman J. Israel, Esq. He says the legal drama, like many other projects in his repertoire, is influenced by his faith.”
  • Trailer for New Movie Paul: Apostle of Christ. To be released next Easter, “AFFIRM Films brings to vivid life on screen the epic story of Paul, the man who went from persecutor of the church to its most powerful and important proponent. Starring Jim Caviezel (“Passion of the Christ”), James Faulkner (“Game of Thrones”), Olivier Martinez (“SWAT”), Joanne Whalley (“A.D. The Bible Continues”) and John Lynch (“The Secret Garden”).”


  • Amy Carmichael: A Soldier’s Life. John Snyder writes “The year 2017 marks the 150thanniversary of Amy Carmichael’s birth (16thDecember 1867). After embracing the claims of Christ as a young lady, Amy began to care for the souls of those nearest her.”
  • More than Inspirational. Jamie Dean writes “For 50 years of exalting Christ in suffering and offering compassionate help and gospel-based hope to the needy, the weak, and the vulnerable, Joni Eareckson Tada is WORLD’s 2017 Daniel of the Year.”

  • What Does “coram Deo” Mean?  R.C. Sproul writes “This phrase literally refers to something that takes place in the presence of, or before the face of, God. To live coram Deois to live one’s entire life in the presence of God, under the authority of God, to the glory of God.”
  • The Bible Belongs to Every Age. Stephen Nichols writes “It is the true, authoritative, necessary, clear, and sufficient Word for all centuries, including the twenty-first.”
  • Jesus’ Victory Over Death: Joy in Our Tears, Hope in Our Loss.  Scotty Smith prays “Death isn’t sovereign; you are. Sin didn’t triumph; you did. You took our judgment and gave us your righteousness. Jesus, you are the grave robber and grace giver. Thank you. Your death was the death of death. Your resurrection is the guarantee of ours. Your return will bring the fullness of our redemption. We praise, bless, and adore you.”


Doug Michael’s Cartoon of the Week

  • Accepting the gift of Jesus Christ requires humility because you’re admitting that you can’t save yourself by your own means. Tim Keller
  • No Christ in your sermon, sir? Then go home, and never preach again until you have something worth preaching. Charles Spurgeon
  • Knowing God is your single greatest privilege as a Christian. Sinclair Ferguson
  • Only those who obey can believe, and only those who believe can obey. Dietrich Bonhoeffer
  • Luther would hate for us to make the Reformation all about Luther and would tell us to repent if we did and to make it all about the gospel. Burk Parsons
  • Christ is made our righteousness, and we are counted the righteousness of God in him. John Calvin
  • A true servant of Christ endeavors to follow Christ in thought, word, and work. George Whitefield
  • A lie is like a snowball: the further you roll it the bigger it becomes. Martin Luther
  • Religion makes us proud of what we have done. The Gospel makes us proud of what Jesus has done. Tim Keller

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.

2 thoughts on “THIS & THAT and Favorite Quotes of the Week

  1. The article by Kevin DeYoung is so well stated that as a woman I actually feel relieved! Outstanding.

  2. The article entitled, “No Epidural Strong Enough…..” by Nancy Guthrie, is one of the best articles on Christian parenting I have ever read – 20 years late 😉, but spot on! Thanks, Bill.

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