Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

THIS & THAT: A Roundup of Favorite Articles and Quotes

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  • Ten (More) Questions for a New Year. Don Whitney writes “Two years ago, I wrote in “Ten Questions for a New Year” that the close of one year, and the beginning of a new one, is an ideal time to “consider your ways” (Haggai 1:5). In other words, many find it an appropriate season for reviewing our walk with Jesus and reconsidering our priorities. To that end, I suggest ten more questions.”
  • Words Matter Because the Heart Matters. Paul Tripp writes “Words matter because they flow out of our hearts. Communication mat­ters because what the heart is and does matters.”

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  • Favorite Quotes of the Week

  • How ‘Progressive’ Can a Christian Get? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question “I have a colleague who would define himself as a ‘progressive Christian.’ He believes homosexual practice is holy, and people engaged in such acts are qualified to be leaders in the church. He also believes the Old Testament is completely metaphorical and cannot be trusted in any historical way. I believe both beliefs fly against what the Bible teaches and teaches about itself. My question is this: Can you contradict the Bible at these levels and still be considered a Christian?”
  • How Can My Family Become More Spiritually Minded? What can families do to become more spiritually minded? From one of Ligonier’s live events, Derek Thomas extends practical wisdom for incorporating the truth of God and His Word into our everyday home life.
  • Which Christological Errors Do You See Resurfacing Today? Throughout history, the church has faced many errors that depart from the Bible’s teaching about the person and work of Jesus Christ. From one of the Ask Ligonier events, Stephen Nichols assesses why we see some of these Christological errors resurfacing today.
  • Can We Really Give God More of Less Glory? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to a question that reads in part “From what I see in the Bible, we either honor God or dishonor him; glorify him or fail to glorify him. It seems more binary”.
  • What is the “Whole Counsel of God”? What does it mean that the Apostle Paul declared “the whole counsel of God” (Acts 20:27), and how can ministers do this today? From one of the Ask Ligonier events, Robert Godfrey reviews the importance of studying all that the Lord has revealed.
  • How Can Christians Respond to the Despair That Many Unbelievers Have? How should we respond to the despair we often see in the lives of our non-Christian friends and family members? From one of Ligonier’s online events, Stephen Nichols and Burk Parsons give encouragement to concerned Christians.
  • Is it Normal to Have a Divided Heart? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question that reads in part When I muster a longing that God would come and meet me, I find my heart is unwilling to welcome God. It seems afraid of meeting God. It does not want to be with God, and this upsets me. On one hand, I want myself to be willing to meet God sincerely and enjoy the sweet time with him. On the other hand, my heart opposes that. Such chaos! What can I do when I find my heart is resisting?”
  • What is the Greatest Threat to Christianity in this Century? The historic Christian faith has come under attack throughout the centuries, sometimes even from within the church. From one of Ligonier’s live events, Sinclair Ferguson, Derek Thomas, and Stephen Nichols identify several of the greatest threats to biblical Christianity today.
  • Do the Non-Elect Have a Chance to Repent? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question, “I could use your help in my struggle with Romans 9:22. It seems to me to imply that those who are not elect are not even given a chance to repent since they were born for destruction. Is this right, that many people are created with no chance of ever being saved?”

  • How Then Should We Worship?  R.C. Sproul writes “We are to worship God how God wants us to worship Him. This is the apparent crisis in the revolution of worship in our day.”
  • The Comfort of God’s Sovereignty. David Murray writes “Our Shepherd is sovereign, and our Sovereign is a shepherd. He’s raising and removing leaders, and He’s lifting and leading lambs. Behold your God and experience new comfort and courage for whatever is ahead.”
  • The Necessity of Justification. Mike Horton’s The Gospel Coalition 2021 National Conference message, “The Necessity of Justification,” takes a look at Luther’s discovery of the doctrine of justification and the many factors that have affected its understanding, acceptance, or rejection by believers over the years. Correctly understanding and applying the doctrine of justification, Horton argues, is key to another needed reformation, though it does not stand alone. We must recognize the priority of justification while also identifying and rejoicing in the plethora of other gifts we receive in salvation.

 Trusting God in suffering also glorifies him to others. Tim Keller

  • Sin is not just the doing of bad things but the making of good things into ultimate things. It is seeking to establish a sense of self by making something else more central to your significance, purpose and happiness than your relationship to God. Tim Keller
  • How unspeakably wonderful to know that all our concerns are held in hands that bled for us. John Newton
  • The founders of every major religion said, “I’ll show you how to find God.” Jesus said, “I am God who has come to find you.” Tim Keller
  • For every one look at yourself, take ten looks at Christ. Robert Murray McCheyne
  • The Gospel is not only the way to enter God’s kingdom; it is also the way to live and grow and serve as part of God’s kingdom. Tim Keller
  • If you have a small view of your sin, God’s grace will seem small to you. (You will think you don’t really need it.) If you have a small view of God’s grace, even a glimpse of your flaws can bring despair. (You will think them too much to bear.) Tim Keller
  • We don’t believe in the power of prayer. We believe in the power of God, and that’s why we pray. Burk Parsons
  • Pride is the carbon monoxide of sin. It silently and slowly kills you without you even knowing. 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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