Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

THIS & THAT: A Roundup of Favorite Articles and Quotes

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  • More interesting article links
  • Favorite Quotes of the Week

  • When You Want to Change Your Husband. What should a married woman do when she wants her husband’s behavior to change? What’s a good starting point for initiating this kind of conversation with your spouse? Nancy Guthrie, Jen Wilkin, and Jackie Hill Perry discuss this question and more in this nine-minute roundtable video.
  • The Way We` Grow as Christians. In this short video, Dane Ortlund states “We need to look to Christ. We need to draw our strength from him. The way we grow is simply by looking to Christ.”
  • 3 Reasons for Hope in the Face of Grief and Worry. In an excerpt from his new book Truth for Life: 365 Daily Devotions, Alistair Begg writes “How does being a believer shape the way in which we view our world, especially when we’re faced with worries and grief?”
  • What is the Fear of God? Michael Reeves writes “The right fear of God is, quite explicitly, a blessing of the new covenant.”
  • Why Suffering Pushes Us Toward or Pulls Us Away from God. Trevin Wax writes “In the strange providence of God, suffering can be the mechanism that either draws people to God or pushes people away.”
  • One Simple Method for Praying the Bible. In this excerpt from his new book When Prayer Is a Struggle: A Practical Guide for Overcoming Obstacles in Prayer, Kevin Halloran writes “The 3-R method gives us three simple prompts for turning Scripture into prayer, thereby fostering a proper response to God’s Word. As we grow in our understanding of His Word, through personal study and church participation, this method will prove more and more useful for both personal and public prayers.
  • Self-Worship Is the World’s Fastest-Growing Religion. Thaddeus Williams writes “When we try to be our own sources of truth, we slowly drive ourselves crazy. When we try to be our own sources of satisfaction, we become miserable wrecks. When we become our own standard of goodness and justice, we become obnoxiously self-righteous. When we seek self-glorification, we become more inglorious.”

  • How Can a Local Church Bring the Gospel to the Neighbors Living Nearby? From one of the Ask Ligonier events, Sinclair Ferguson presents a vision for outreach and evangelism that involves the whole congregation.
  • Is Complementarity Merely Functional? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question “I have started to notice an emerging view of ‘complementarity’ online, and in my own circles, which seems a little off to me. It’s called complementarity and holds to the idea that the husband and wife take on different roles in the home, roles that mostly do not overlap. But to me it often sounds like simply a functional idea.”  
  • What Does “Sola Scriptura” Mean? On this episode of Ask Ligonier, Derek Thomas addresses the question “What does sola Scriptura mean?”
  • On Cigarettes, Vaping and Nicotine. On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper addresses Our questions include things like, Is cigarette smoking a sin? Is smoking a “deliberate” sin, a willful sin, like what we read about in Hebrews 10:26? Is it sinful for someone to smoke indoors, thereby endangering the health of non-smokers inside a home? And of course, we have several emails from parents watching their teens get addicted to nicotine by vapes. Should they be concerned? There’s a lot to cover. In our first venture into these intertwined themes, what thoughts come to your mind?”
  • Are We Living in the Last Days? From one of the Ask Ligonier events, Robert Godfrey responds with biblical and historical insight, encouraging Christians to serve the Lord faithfully as they wait for Christ’s return.
  • Does God Command Our Praise for His Sake or Ours? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question Does God command our praise because it glorifies him, or does he command our praise because he wants us to be happy? Does he command our worship for himself, or for our good? Or for both?”

  • 5 Myths About Deacons. Matt Smethurst writes “Deacons are not the church’s spiritual council of directors, nor the executive board to whom the pastor answers. They are a cavalry of servants, deputized to execute the elders’ vision by coordinating various ministries. They are like a congregation’s Special Ops force, carrying out unseen assignments with fortitude and joy.”

  • Christianity is not about your best life now, it’s about eternal life forever. H.B. Charles Jr.
  • There is no way to know who you really are until you’ve been tested. Tim Keller
  • The Spirit does not add new information about Jesus. He simply opens our eyes to see who He really is. Sinclair Ferguson
  • The question is not, “Why is there only one way to God?”, but “Why is there even one way?” R.C. Sproul
  • There is ultimately no such thing as unanswered prayer. If the answer at first is “no” or “not yet”, it is because he gives us what we want in ways better than we asked. Tim Keller
  • We are secure, not because we hold tightly to Jesus, but because He holds tightly to us. R.C. Sproul
  • Those who think spiritual warfare is a joke haven’t yet entered the battle. Burk Parsons
  • Faith is nourished on the grace and graciousness of Jesus Christ. Sinclair Ferguson
  • Christian marriage does not offer a choice between fulfillment and sacrifice but mutual fulfillment thru mutual sacrifice. 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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