Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

THIS & THAT: A Weekly Roundup of Favorite Articles, Cartoons & Quotes

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  • Thanking God for His Love. In this short video, Thabiti Anyabwile reflects on a moment when the reality of God’s love in the work of election became evident to him.
  • My Soul Is Too Far Gone. Francis Chan writes “No soul is too far gone for God to bring back. No heart is too hard for God to soften. No son or daughter is too lost for God to rescue. Keep praying for God to do what only he can”.
  • Convictions and Consequences. Sophia Lee writes “When Isabella Chow, a student senator at the University of California, Berkeley, decided to abstain from a pro-LGBT vote and instead explain her Christian views, she knew she’d have to weather a storm. She just didn’t expect that storm to involve a torrent of F-bombs and demands for her resignation.”
  • “Broken”, “Authentic”, “Surrender”: The Problem of Christian Jargon. Dan Doriani, who I enjoyed two classes with at Covenant Seminary, writes “Let us strive to use the right words in the right way, for the sake of Christ and his church. I don’t ask that everyone guard their every word, but I do propose that leaders draw our language—words and meanings—from Scripture as much as possible, seeking to take captive every thought and make it obedient to Christ (2 Cor. 10:5)”.
  • Your Lord’s Day Might Be Someone Else’s Way of Escape. Rosaria Butterfield writes “Radically ordinary hospitality begins when we remember that God uses us as living epistles—and that the openness or inaccessibility of our homes and hearts stands between life and death, victory and defeat, and grace or shame for most people.”


  • 20 Signs You’ve Made Politics an Idol. Our friend Kevin Halloran writes “We’ve given politics and government a role they were never meant to play: solver of all our problems, provider of security, happiness, equity, and meaning. In other words, god.”
  • Are We Really in Danger of Making an Idol of the Family? Kevin DeYoung writes “The conjugal family—one man and one woman whose covenant union produces offspring—is profoundly good, a necessary and foundational element of God’s creational design. But it is not ultimate.”


  • My Suffering Has Not Defined Me. Joni Eareckson Tada writes “Boast in your identity in Jesus, and lead someone else to Calvary, like he would. Lay your life down for others as he did. Cherish God’s word as he does. Carry your cross daily in the manner he would. Pray the way he does. Worship the Father like he does. Most of all, ask the Spirit to expose your sins that killed him”.
  • Nancy Guthrie on Ministering to People in Their Suffering. In this six-minute video, Nancy Guthrie explains that while the Christian default to pray for those experiencing suffering is correct, their language in those prayers is often deficient. Instead of praying only for the suffering to go away, we should pray for God to give faith and peace in the midst of suffering and to use that suffering to bring the sufferer newfound maturity in Christ.

  • 3 Lines in The Sand. Stephen Nichols writes “We must let the Bible be our guide. If it’s a gospel issue, then we must take our stand. If it’s a biblical truth matter, then we must take our stand. God has spoken on the nature of human identity and sexual identity. God has spoken on marriage.”
  • Teach Us to Number Our Days. Robert Godfrey writes “The shortness and weakness of human life are the fruit of sin and judgment in the world.”
  • ERLC National Conference Messages. You can watch the messages from the recent 2018 Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) National Conference here.
  • God Knows What He’s Doing. Listen to this sermon on Romans 11:33-36 preached by H.B. Charles Jr.
  • The State of Theology. What do Americans think about God, Jesus Christ, sin, and eternity? Ligonier Ministries’ State of Theology survey helps uncover the answers. Every two years, we take the theological temperature of the United States to help Christians better understand today’s culture and equip the church with better insights for discipleship. Read some of our key findings from 2018 below and explore the data for yourself.

Doug Michael’s Cartoon of the Week


10 Favorite Quotes of the Week

  • If we believe in God only when he is doing great things for us, we are not really serving him; we are only using him. Tim Keller
  • The more sanctified a person is the more heavily weighted his prayer time is in adoration. R.C. Sproul
  • Why does God have to punish sin? Because he’s so good. Why does God want to forgive sin? Because he’s so good. Tim Keller
  • The point of your life is to point to Him. Whatever you are doing, God wants to be glorified, because this whole thing is His. Francis Chan
  • What is it about your own miserable works and doings that you think you could please God more than the sacrifice of His own Son? Martin Luther
  • In my judgment they are the happiest, who have the lowest thoughts of themselves, and in whose eyes Jesus is most glorious and precious. John Newton
  • Resolved, to live with all my might, while I do live. Jonathan Edwards
  • Anxiety may look more humble than pride, but it’s really just pride without the make-up on. Mark Dever
  • God’s love in John 3:16 is not amazing because the world is so big, but because the world is so bad. D.A. Carson

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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