Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

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

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  • The Sin of Racism. Tim Keller writes “Biblically, sin is anything that falls short of God’s will and glory, that violates his law and his character (1 John 3:4; Romans 3:23). There are at least four ways in which what we will be calling racism is a violation of God’s glory and therefore is a sin.”
  • What You Should Know About the 2020 Republican Party Platform. Joe Carter writes “Why should Christians care about a document that few non-politicians will ever read? Because of the influence the two major party platforms have on public policy.”
  • Be Careful What You Put Your Hope in, Including Politics. Randy Alcorn writes “When people put their hope in political parties and beliefs, these can become gods. Christians sometimes view political leaders and their platforms with a degree of faith that should be reserved only for God and his Kingdom. And sometimes they display a degree of hatred and scorn that should be reserved for Satan and his demons.”
  • The State of Theology Survey: 2020 Results. Nathan Bingham writes “What do Americans think about Jesus Christ, the Bible, truth, and ethics? Ligonier Ministries’ State of Theology provides insights. 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 Joe Carter’s article on this survey.
  • What Are We Arguing About? Kevin DeYoung writes that we need to be clearer as Christians about where our disagreements lie.
  • Why Is It Important to Understand Penal Substitutionary Atonement? Unless we understand the doctrine of penal substitutionary atonement, we will not understand why Christ died. From one of the Ask Ligonier events, John MacArthur explains why the cross stands at the very heart of the Christian faith.

Click on ‘Continue reading’ for:

  • More interesting article links
  • Favorite Quotes of the Week

  • How Should Christians View the End of Life? In this first episode of The Gospel Coalition Q&A’s Christians and Healthcare series, Dr. Katie Butler answers the question, “How should Christians view the end of life?”
  • Does God Single Out the Sin of Homosexuality? (Romans 1). Robert Yarbrough, who I enjoyed an excellent course on Jeremiah with at Covenant Seminary, writes “How low can people go? While in recent years same-sex relations have been glamorized in some sectors of society, Jesus confirmed that God’s will for marriage has always been lifelong heterosexual monogamy (Matthew 19:4-6).
  • Why Unhealthy People Crave Controversy. Russell Moore writes “Sometimes we must be ready to “speak a word” into a controversy, but often what’s called for is for someone to model the different way of valuing his soul over having something to say. When it comes to those for whom quarreling is life, the way to win is not to win at their game, but to play a different game altogether.”
  • Look Death in the Face. Paul Tripp writes “Death is dreadful, but it can be a gift and a teacher. It forces you to face the impermanence of the world around you and its inability to fulfill you.”

  • Will the New Creation Look Like This One? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the questions “Will the new creation look a lot different than this world looks right now? Or will it be very similar? When the sin and sorrow is gone, what can we expect to see?”
  • What Do My Entertainment Habits Reveal About My Soul? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question “If I went so long without communion with God, in this season of anxiousness, does this mean I don’t really love or trust God to begin with?”
  • Is There a Role for Entertainment in the Church? Should we seek to make our worship entertaining? From one of the Ask Ligonier events, Derek Thomas directs us toward the proper place of fun and amusement in the Christian life.
  • When is it Right for a Christian to Disobey the Government? In a time of government “Stay at Home/Shutdown” orders, Ligon Duncan addresses this timely question.
  • Why Do Christians Still Die? David Murray writes “Christians do not have to die, but they do die in order to have communion with Christ’s sufferings, to experience Christ’s grace, to be made into Christ’s image, to witness for Christ’s glory, and to bring them into Christ’s presence. The Christian’s death may on the surface look like the death of the non-Christian, but it is essentially and wonderfully different.”
  • Are You Shaped by the World or by the Word? Nancy Guthrie writes “The world around us is trying to press us into its mold of thinking the goal of this life is comfort and security. But the Word of God is renewing our minds so that we have very different aspirations from simply a comfortable life with a comfortable retirement.”
  • What Does it Mean in Romans 1 That God Gave People up to a Reprobate Mind? Romans 1:28 reveals that “God gave them up to a debased mind…” Who is this describing, and what does it mean? From one of the Ask Ligonier events, Derek Thomas speaks on the dreadful effects of sin and the only way they can be undone.
  • Can Unbelievers Do Good Deeds? R.C. Sproul writes “Externally, many virtuous acts are going on both among believers and unbelievers, but God considers both the external obedience and the motivation. Under that tight norm of judgment, we’re in trouble.”
  • What Should We Remember in Trials? In this video, Derek Thomas provides encouragement for Christians who are enduring suffering.
  • How Is Limited Atonement True When Scripture Teaches That Christ Died for the Whole World? Did Christ die for every individual in the world without exception? From one of the Ask Ligonier events, John MacArthur discusses the extent of the atonement revealed in Scripture.
  • Does Every Sin Cost Me an Eternal Reward? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question “Does each of my sins cost me an eternal reward?”

10 Quotes from Sing! Global

  • Every time a saint comes to die, no matter how hard or easy the death may prove to be, that saint may always say or sing, “I trace the rainbow through the rain and feel the promise is not in vain. That morn shall tearless be.” John Piper
  • Our singing should be an extension of the ministry of the Word. H.B. Charles Jr.
  • The pastor is not up there to give you his own ideas and his own opinions. He is up there to tell you what God says in his Word. Ligon Duncan
  • We want to always be looking into the midst of whatever difficulty we are going through in our lives, for the good things that God has given us. Paul Tripp
  • Being fallen human beings, the most natural thing we can sing is lament. Michael Card
  • We Christians should be, when we worship through Holy Communion, as if we were THERE, when our Lord shared with us at the Last Supper and then went out to the cross. Os Guinness
  • We want our services to be saturated with the Bible. Whatever else happens on Sunday morning, we want there to be tons and tons of Bible. Tim Challies
  • We can’t all influence the whole world. But what we can do is live in light of what Christ says with His power within us and change things one by one. John Lennox
  • You can’t do better than begin with the Doxology because it puts the glory of God at the center of what you’re doing. Glorifying God is the central activity in all Christian instruction and discipline. J.I. Packer

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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