Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

THIS & THAT: A Roundup of Favorite Articles and Quotes

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  • I Sing My Way Through Pain: Three Lessons in Resilient Joy. Joni Eareckson Tada writes “Whenever I feel downcast, I ask a few friends to pray, and then I worship Jesus with robust hymns filled with solid doctrine. Hymns that focus on the worthiness of Christ have enough spiritual muscle to barge into my discouraged soul and shake awake a hopeful response.”

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        • Favorite Quotes of the Week

  • Are You an Evangelical, a Pharisee, or Both? On this episode of the Crossway podcast, Michael Reeves talks about the Pharisaism that all-too-often takes root in our churches, our homes, and, ultimately, our hearts, challenging us to see how the sins of pride and hypocrisy are an ever-present threat to us as God’s people—but also how God can save us from ourselves as we turn to him

  • How Can the Church Care for People Suffering from Alzheimer’s Disease or Dementia? From one of the live Ask Ligonier events, Derek Thomas offers suggestions to help us show the mercy of Christ to souls in need.
  • Was Paul Really the Worst of Sinners? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question Paul makes this claim in 1 Timothy 1:15. ‘The saying is trustworthy and deserving of full acceptance, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am the foremost.’ Foremost? It must be true because this is the authoritative word of God. But is Paul exaggerating his claim here? The context seems to suggest that Paul meant he truly was the worst sinner. He goes on to say in verse 16 that he was saved as an example that if he, the chief of sinners, was saved, then surely others can be saved as well. So was Paul really the world’s worst sinner?”
  • In What Way Can the Doctrine of the Trinity Bring Us Delight? Many people, even many Christians, find the doctrine of the Trinity to be obscure. Can this doctrine actually bring us joy? From the 2022 Ligonier National Conference, Michael Reeves invites us to delight in the love of our triune God.
  • Do Angels Carry Our Prayers to God? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question Do angels carry our prayers to God? I have heard this ever since I was a little girl. But passages like 1 Timothy 2:5seem to suggest otherwise.”
  • Are Christians Obligated to Vote? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question “I have been struggling with the question lately about whether or not a Christian who lives in a free society is obligated to vote. God commands us to submit to governing authorities (Romans 13:1), to pray regularly for them (1 Timothy 2:1–2), and he gives us an allowance for civil disobedience in rare cases when it is necessary (Acts 5:29). But if, in a given election, the choices boil down to options I feel no strong conviction toward, or if the election comes down to an option of the ‘lesser of two evil’ choices, do Christians have the choice to simply not vote at all? In my circles, this does not seem to be an option for a faithful believer. I’ve been told that this would amount to neighbor-neglect on my part. Would it?”
  • What Place Does the Law Have in the Christian Life? Since salvation is not obtained by our works, what role do the law and commandments of God play in our lives as Christians? From one of Ligonier’s live events, Miguel Núñez, Robert Godfrey, and Sinclair Ferguson address this important question.
  • Is De-Gendering a Sin? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question I find myself at a stage in my life when I am seriously considering removing my female body parts — namely, my breasts and my uterus — because I no longer want to be a woman. Women are perceived as weak vessels whose only purpose is to have children. Even Scripture supports that ideology. As a modern ‘woman,’ I have no desire to have children or get married but to have a successful career to help support less fortunate people and animals live better lives. My question is this: Would doing this to my body be sinful?”
  • How Should I Deal with Prayerless in My Life? From one of Ligonier’s live events, Robert Godfrey and Kevin DeYoung offer encouragements to help us be intentional in our pursuit of prayer.

  • Free Bible, Theology and Ministry Courses. Check out the free online courses available through Covenant Theological Seminary, which is where I studied.
  • John Piper Answers Common Questions about the Second Coming. On this episode of the Crossway podcast, John Piper talks about some of the most common questions related to the second coming and makes the case that although these questions are important and worth asking, there’s an even more fundamental question that we all must ask ourselves: Am I truly longing for Christ’s return?
  • What to Do When Revival Comes. Don Carson writes “Based on my experiences, reading, and understanding of Scripture, here’s my list of dos and don’ts when revival comes.”

  • We can be sure our prayers are answered precisely in the way we would want them to be answered if we knew everything God knows. Tim Keller
  • Grace is only given to those who know they are beggars. Beggars only know they’re beggars because grace is given to them. Burk Parsons
  • The gospel is not just the ABC of the Christian life but the A to Z of the Christian life. Tim Keller
  • Salvation is something that God does in us and for us, not something that we in any way do for ourselves. R.C. Sproul
  • A Bible that’s falling apart usually belongs to someone who isn’t. Charles Spurgeon
  • The God of the Bible takes our misery and suffering so seriously that he was willing to take it on himself. Tim Keller
  • Prayer must not be our intermittent work but our daily business, our habit and vocation. Charles Spurgeon
  • Weekly, normative, ordinary-means-of-grace gathered worship on the Lord’s Day is one of the more extraordinary and radical things in the world. Burk Parsons
  • Though I am not what I ought to be, nor what I wish to be, nor what I hope to be, I can truly say, I am not what I once was. John Newton

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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