Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

THIS & THAT: A Gathering of Favorite Articles and Quotes

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Click on ‘Continue reading’ for:

  • More interesting article links
  • Favorite Quotes of the Week

  • Should We Despise the Vile – or Love Them? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to two questions about this subject, one of which is Psalm 15:4says, speaking of a blameless man, that ‘in [their] eyes a vile person is despised.’ How can we both despise the vile, and yet also love our enemies?”
  • How Can Christians Grow in Humility? From one of the live Ask Ligonier events, Burk Parsons gives guidance in the diligent, prayerful pursuit of this foundational characteristic.
  • Overcoming Fear. On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the questionIf God does not give us a spirt of fear, but of power and love and self-control” — 2 Timothy 1:7 again — “then why am I, as a believer, still struggling to overcome fear? Shouldn’t the Spirit’s presence in me be the end of all my fearing?”
  • What Lessons Can Christians Learn from the Life of the Apostle Peter? From one of the live Ask Ligonier events, Derek Thomas considers this flawed yet faithful Apostle.
  • Should the World Like Us or Hate Us? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question I am writing to ask you about a paradox I see in Scripture. Paul, in 1 Timothy 3:7, says that an overseer, a church leader, ‘must be well thought of by outsiders.’ But Jesus told his own disciples four times that they would be ‘hated by all’ (Matthew 10:22Matthew 24:9Mark 13:13Luke 21:17). Because ‘if they have called the master of the house Beelzebul, how much more will they malign those of his household’ (Matthew 10:25). Assuming it’s valid to extend Jesus’s words to his disciples to pastors today, how is it that an overseer must be at the same time expected to be well regarded by outsiders and yet also hated by everyone?”

  • How Does God Speak to Christians? In this short video, Sinclair Ferguson explains how God does and does not speak to Christians.
  • Lemonade on the Porch: The Gospel in a Post-Christendom Society. In the first of a two-part series, Tim Keller writes on how we can continue to share the gospel in the Western world as cultural Christianity fades.
  • New John Piper Podcast. Light + Truth is a new podcast from Desiring God. The podcast is hosted by Dan Cruver and features classic sermons from John Piper. The podcast will last approximately 25 minutes and new episodes will be released five days a week.
  • 2024 Ligonier National Conference. The 2024 Ligonier National Conference will be held at the Rosen Shingle Creek Resort in Orlando May 23-25, 2024. The theme will be “The Way, The Truth & The Life”. Speakers include Sinclair Ferguson, Michael Reeves, Derek Thomas and Miguel Núñez.
  • Alistair Begg on Responding to Gender and Sexuality Issues with Clarity, Gentleness, and Biblical Conviction. Alistair Begg recently sat down with Simon Calvert from the Christian Institute to discuss how believers, and especially church leaders, should respond to challenges to biblical teaching in the form of broadening so-called “conversion therapy” bans. In this interview, he focuses particularly on the role of pastors in preparing their congregations for faithful, Christlike living in the real world.
  • Discovering the Gospel in Every Book of the Bible. Tim Keller’s new teaching series is Discovering the Gospel in Every Book. Check out the latest episode to learn how the book of Ruth connects to the overarching narrative of the Gospel.

  • I Once Was: Matt Holliday. Matt Holliday didn’t grow up going to church regularly, but soon after he was selected in the 1998 MLB Draft by the Colorado Rockies, he noticed a number of people around him who followed Jesus. What he saw were people with purpose, something he wanted in his own life. He was stubborn, he didn’t know much of the Bible, but when Matt felt God wooing him, he knew Jesus was who he wanted to follow. Watch this video to hear Matt Holliday tell his “I Once Was” story.
  • The New Religion of Artificial Intelligence and Its Threat to Human Dignity — A Conversation with Adam Kirsch. On this edition of the Thinking in Public podcast, Albert Mohler visits with Adam Kirsch, a renowned literary critic and poet. His most recent book, The Revolt Against Humanity: Imagining a Future Without Us, is the topic of this episode.
  • I Once Was: Tommy Edman. As Tommy Edman entered pro baseball out of Stanford, he was living with “one eye set on the world and one eye set on God.” He wasn’t fulfilled. When he was drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals, however, he saw men of God living with integrity on and off the field. As he watched and talked with them, Tommy was able to learn how he too could turn away from the world and set both eyes on God. Watch this video to hear Tommy Edman of the St. Louis Cardinals tell his “I Once Was” story.

  • God doesn’t give us hypothetical grace in lifetime supply. He gives us what we need today—one day at a time. Tim Keller
  • Unless we silence sin, sin will silence our consciences. Unless we heed God’s word, the day may come when we despise God’s Son—and then God will have nothing more to say to us. Sinclair Ferguson
  • It’s true, Jesus was a friend of sinners, and because he was a true friend, he called those friends to repent and believe. Burk Parsons
  • We don’t worship in order to get right with God but because God has declared us right with himself in Christ. Thus, we cannot help but worship. Burk Parsons
  • Every test and trial, every storm in life is another opportunity for you to see the glory of Jesus Christ and discover his power in your life. Sinclair Ferguson
  • You can love without agreeing with someone. You can disagree without hating them. Tim Keller
  • If I’m growing in grace, that means I’m becoming more bothered by my offenses than I am by yours. Scott Sauls
  • The first, second, and third characteristics of a maturing Christian is humility. Burk Parsons
  • When God writes our names in the “Lamb’s Book of Life,” He doesn’t do it with an eraser handy. He does it for eternity. R.C. Sproul

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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