Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

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

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  • Is Eternal Punishment in Hell Fair? Watch this short video clip from Ligonier Ministries’ 2016 National Conference in which R.C.Sproul explains that God is infinitely perfect, so even one sin is a heinous crime against Him.
  • Is It OK to Be Angry with God over Difficult Things? Randy Alcorn writes “Sometimes we legitimize being mad at God, and we need to start by correcting that. There’s a difference between being profoundly disappointed, discouraged, or even depressed by a bad situation, and being mad at God about it. Being mad is blaming God, and saying, “It’s your fault.” And blaming God is a dead-end street, because in doing so we turn away from our greatest source of comfort.”
  • My Girlfriend Affirms Homosexual Love – Is This a Deal-Breaker? On this episode of the “Ask Pastor John” podcast, a listener states that his girlfriend, who he wishes to marry, has told him on several occasions she doesn’t believe homosexuality is a sin. He asks if this is a deal-breaker for their relationship.

Click on ‘Continue reading’ for:

  • More interesting article links
  • Great cartoons
  • Favorite Quotes of the Week

  • Does the Bible Support Female Deacons? Yes. Thomas Schreiner writes “Christians who love God’s Word differ on whether women may serve as deacons, but the evidence presented here suggests they may do so. And in such a ministry they are a great blessing to the church, and the women who serve are encouraged as they use their gifts.” Guy Waters disagrees.
  • What Does Jesus Mean By “I Never Knew You”? In this episode of the “Ask Pastor John” podcast, John Piper responds to the question “In Matthew 25:11-12, Jesus says: ‘Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, “Lord, lord, open to us.” But he answered, “Truly, I say to you, I do not know you.”’ Do these two verses imply to us anything about salvation? Particularly so when the bridegroom said, ‘I do not know you’?”
  • Since God Is Sovereign, What Is the Purpose of Intercessory Prayer? In this short Question and Answer video from the 2015 Ligonier National Conference, Sinclair Ferguson explains that we pray because God sovereignly commands us to.
  • What is Baptism? Guy Richard writes “We can say that baptism is a rite of washing or cleansing in water that is commanded by the Lord Jesus Himself to be a sign and seal of the inward washing of all our sins and thus of being counted righteous in God’s sight only through faith in Jesus Christ.”

  • Being Public with Our Faith. Tim Keller writes “At a moment when there is more need for evangelism — sharing the good news about Jesus — there is less willingness to do it.”
  • Albert Mohler on Confronting the Culture Winsomely Yet Subversively. In this short video, Albert Mohler says that engaging the culture on matters of sexual freedom is complicated because the culture has redefined what it means to be happy, gracious, and friendly to the point that any form of disagreement will not fit those categories.”
  • Russell Moore on What Christians Should Know about Transgenderism. In this short video, Russell Moore explains three areas where churches need to prepare as they address transgenderism in the community. They must understand what the Bible teaches about gender, they must avoid stereotypes of gender, and they must prepare to disciple those who feel alienated from their own gender.
  • Tim Keller on Changing the Culture without Being Colonized by It. In this short video, Tim Keller suggests that the danger of the post-Christian culture is that it has co-opted Christian ideas and taken them to an extreme. He articulates the pitfalls of both the liberal and the conservative individualism and the necessity of worldview education and apologetics in discipleship.
  • Russell Moore on Burial vs. Cremation. In this short video, Russell Moore spells out a nuanced difference between burial and cremation. While avoiding any condemnation of cremation, he suggests that burial communicates better the Christian concepts of the coming resurrection and a high view of the body.
  • Cohabitation Doesn’t Compare: Marriage, Cohabitation, and Relationship Quality. Bradford Wilcox, Jeffrey Dew and Alysse ElHage write “These findings confirm previous research showing that cohabiting relationships have lower levels of commitment, higher rates of infidelity and conflict, and are significantly more likely to end than married relationships.
  • Ask Anything with Albert Mohler. Watch Albert Mohler answer questions at this live event held March 1 on the campus of the University of Southern California (USC). Fast forward to the 26:30 point in the video.
  • Murder by Any Other Name: Introducing Fourth Term Abortion. Greg Morse writes “America is in the middle of a holocaust. Can we now, legally and otherwise, look at children outof the womb and kill them? In failing to pass this bill, our representatives have, for the meantime, given their answer.”  ​
  • New Poll Finds “Dramatic Shift” on Abortion Attitudes. Alayna Treene writes “The poll found Americans are now as likely to identify as pro-life (47%) as they are pro-choice (47%). Last month, a similar Marist survey found that Americans were more likely to identify as pro-choice than pro-life 55% to 38%, a 17-point gap.”


  • God’s Good Pleasure in Election. R.C.Sproul writes “Though the reason for our salvation does not rest in us, that does not mean that God is without a purpose in choosing His elect. He does have a purpose, and it is a good one.”
  • His Transcendent Awesome Glory. In this short video clip from his teaching series The Attributes of God, Steven Lawson explains that God’s holiness is His transcendent awesome glory.
  • Inexpressible: Hesed and the Mystery of God’s Loving Kindness. On this episode of the BreakPoint podcast, Warren Cole Smith visits with Michael Card about his excellent new book Inexpressible: Hesed and the Mystery of God’s Lovingkindness.
  • Trembling Before the Holiness of God. Watch this brief video clip from his classic teaching series The Holiness of God in which R.C.Sproul explains how every human being that is exposed to the holiness of God trembles before His presence.
  • Famous Christian Quotes…That Aren’t Real. Trevin Wax writes “Some of the most famous Christian quotes floating around out there are on the internet aren’t real. To put it another way, the quotes are real, but they’re sometimes misattributed to famous Christians instead of lesser-known writers. Or no one knows the actual origin of the quotes at all.”
  • Ask Ligonier with Stephen Nichols. On February 26, Dr. Stephen Nichols joined Nathan Bingham for an Ask Ligonier event to answer biblical and theological questions live online.
  • God Set His Sermons on Fire. John Piper writes “From the beginning to the end of his life, Lloyd-Jones’s ministry was a cry for depth in two areas — depth in biblical doctrine and depth in vital spiritual experience. Light and heat. Logic and fire. Word and Spirit.”

  • African Christians Rescue United Methodists. Denny Burk writes “North Africa gave birth to Western Christianity centuries ago. Now Africa is coming to the rescue of a compromised Western Christianity—at least in its Methodist version. Thank God for our African brothers and sisters.”
  • Four Ways to Fight Sexual Sin. Sam Allberry writes “Sexual sin goes against who God created humans to be. The Bible teaches us this lesson in Proverbs 5 as the sage warns a young married man against the adulteress.”
  • God’s Hidden Purpose in Your Suffering. Lee Baugh writes “In one of my favorite sermonsby Sinclair Ferguson, he points out that God is often working not just for our good but for the good of others through us. Sometimes in our American context, we can get a little wrapped up in our own little world. We can think that our suffering is just all about us and God, that God is only doing something in my life. But as Dr. Ferguson also points out in his sermon, the truth is that God is always working in multiple lives and in multiple ways all at once.”

Doug Michael’s Cartoon of the Week

  • Grace is God’s free and unmerited favor shown to guilty sinners who deserve only judgment. It is the love of God shown to the unlovely. It is God reaching downward to people who are in rebellion against Him. Jerry Bridges
  • The irony of the gospel is that the only way to be worthy of it is to admit you’re completely unworthy of it. Tim Keller
  • Our great task is not to make evangelicalism credible, but to show that the gospel of Jesus Christ is beautiful. Albert Mohler
  • Only when we’re thoroughly convinced that the Christian life is entirely of grace are we able to serve God out of a grateful and loving heart. Jerry Bridges
  • As Christ died for sin, so we should die to sin. Matthew Henry
  • Make disciples. Our lives should revolve around these two words. Whether as individuals or as couples, our mission is to make as many disciples as we can during our time on earth. This takes priority over everything else. Francis Chan
  • Give up relying upon your prayers, your tears, your baptism, your repentance, and even your faith itself. Your reliance is to be on nothing but that which is in Jesus Christ. Charles Spurgeon
  • For what is idolatry if not this: to worship the gifts in place of the Giver Himself? John Calvin
  • Anything can serve as a counterfeit god, especially the very best things in life. 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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