Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

THIS & THAT: A Weekly Roundup of Favorite Articles and Quotes

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  • Headed to the Super Bowl: Eagles’ QB Foles Says ‘All Glory Belongs to God’. Nancy Flory writes “The Philadelphia Eagles soundly defeated the Minnesota Vikings 38-7 Sunday, and heads to a Super Bowl LII showdown with the New England Patriots. For many on the team, the win was an opportunity to share their faith.”
  • Jordan Peterson, Hero. Rod Dreher writes “This 30-minute interview from Britain’s Channel 4 with clinical psychologist Jordan Peterson is INCREDIBLE. The interviewer, Cathy Newman, makes a fool of herself. She doesn’t listen to what Peterson says, and keeps badly restating his arguments as, “So, you’re saying that …” — and then completely mischaracterizing him. It is astonishing to watch — and he keeps his cool the entire time!”
  • Rachel Denhollander. Watch Rachel Denhollander, one of the victims of Larry Nassar in this video. She preaches the Gospel to Nassar beginning around the 27-minute mark. Note: the video does include some graphic detail about how she was abused.
  • No sooner had we finished season two of The Crown, and here comes the second season of Victoria on PBS. It’s one of our favorite series.
  • Oscar nominations. The Oscar nominations were announced on January 23, and were sadly led by The Shape of Water, which is a bestiality themed love story; it received 13 nominations.  I was pleased to see Dunkirk, my top film of the year, receive 8 nominations. I was also pleased to see Gary Oldman nominated for Best Actor for Darkest Hour and Christopher Plummer for Best Supporting Actor for All the Money in the World.
  • Bolivia’s President Revokes Evangelism Restrictions. Morgan Lee writes “Bolivia’s evangelical leaders led a national day of prayer and fasting in response to their socialist government making evangelism a crime. That same Sunday, their president went on TV to answer their prayers.”

World Magazine Cartoon of the Week

  • Where Dead Men Lie: A Letter to a Would-Be Adulterer. Greg Morse writes “Dear husband, forsake not your precious wife. Forsake not your honor and manliness. Forsake not your witness. Forsake not your God. Let Christ’s fidelity and love win your heart afresh to your wife. Be intoxicated with your bride.And with our Groom.”
  • Youth-Driven Culture. Stephen Nichols writes “The subtle and not-so-subtle pulls of the idolization of youth manifest themselves in three areas.”
  • How Christian is Self-Improvement? Marshall Segal writes “The admonition is not to abandon resolutions or personal discipline or healthy habits of dieting, exercising, and sleeping. Not at all. By all means, pursue personal health, growth, and maturity — just not for your own sake. Make and keep resolutions that produce love and not just self-improvement.”

  • Better to Lose Your Life Than Waste It. In this message, John Piper states “My aim tonight is to persuade you of the truth — or at least open you to the truth — that it is better to lose your life than to waste it.”
  • Spurgeon’s Greatest Sermon. Alistair Begg writes “There is no sermon more relevant for today than the one Spurgeon preached with his life, as he faced suffering within the bounds of faith”.
  • Pleading with Sinners to Be Reconciled to God. John MacArthur writes “We ought to cling to the vital doctrine of God’s sovereignty. But don’t ever let your view of sovereignty overwhelm or obscure the fact that sinners have a responsibility to respond to God—and we have a responsibility to beg them to do so. God accomplishes His reconciling work through—not in spite of—the obedience of faith from those He calls to be reconciled.”
  • The Top 125 Influences on the Gospel-Centered Movement. Jared C. Wilson writes “Who has shaped this gospel recovery movement? I’ve thought a lot about the myriad voices speaking into the gospel-centered tribe, mostly for the better, and asked around with quite a few influential folks themselves to compile this list.”
  • The Prayer that Turns the World Upside Down. In this excerpt from his new book The Prayer That Turns the World Upside Down: The Lord’s Prayer as a Manifesto for Revolution, Albert Mohler writes “The Lord’s Prayer is the prayer that turns the world upside down. Are you looking for revolution? There is no clearer call to revolution than when we pray “Yourkingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” But this is a revolution only God can bring … and He will.”

  • Why Do So Many Evangelicals Support Abortion? Joe Carter writes “The survey reveals we pro-lifers have a lot of work to do in changing hearts and minds. If we can’t even convince those in our denominations—redeemed believers who should know that God opposes killing babies—how are we ever going to convince the unbelieving world?”
  • Who or What Has the Best of Your Heart? Scotty Smith prays “So as this day begins, and continues, we reaffirm that our greatest joy in life is being known, loved, and enjoyed by you, Jesus. We love you because you first loved us and gave yourself for us. Your love for us is always full bore and full throttle, passionately focused and tenaciously tender. You, alone, are worthy of our heart’s attention, affection, and adoration.”
  • Why Is Theology So Important? Can’t Jesus Be Enough? In this three-minute video, Kevin DeYoung discusses the necessary connection between being a disciple of Jesus and theology.
  • Should You Quit?   Russell Moore writes “Some of you are wondering whether to quit your jobs. Some of you are wondering whether to quit ministries you have within your local church. Some of you are wondering whether to quit other aspects of your life that I don’t even know about. You’re discouraged and you’re ready to give up. Should you?” 

Doug Michael’s Cartoon of the Week

  • Your identity is whatever you look to for your security and your significance. Tim Keller
  • The big idea of the Christian life is Coram Deo. Coram Deo captures the essence of the Christian life. R. C. Sproul
  • Our gifts are not measured by the amount we contribute, but by the surplus kept in our own hand. Charles Spurgeon
  • Faith alone saves, but the faith that saves is never alone. John Calvin
  • Idolatry is any time we find our satisfaction, our security, our treasure in someone, something, anything else other than God. Ligon Duncan
  • The power for the Christian life does not come from the question: what would Jesus do? But, rather, from the question: what has Jesus already done? Charles Spurgeon
  • The church does not need brilliant personalities, but faithful servants of Jesus and the brethren. Dietrich Bonhoeffer
  • God has not called you to be awesome. He has called you to be humble, faithful, and free. Leave the awesome to him. Scott Sauls
  • If we think we are not all that bad, the idea of grace will never change us. Change comes by seeing a need for a Savior and getting one. 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.

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