Coram Deo ~

Looking at contemporary culture from a Christian worldview

THIS & THAT: A Gathering of Favorite Articles and Quotes

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  • How to Pray for Your Enemies. John Piper writes “Jesus gives numerous examples of the kinds of behaviors involved in loving our enemies. The first mentioned in the Sermon on the Mount after the command to love is prayer.”
  • Practically, How Do We Abide in Jesus? John Piper writes “Abiding in Jesus—in his love and in his word—is trusting that he really is loving us at every moment and that everything he has revealed about himself and his work for us and our future with him is true.”
  • On the Crushing Guilt of Failing at Quiet Time. Kevin DeYoung writes “Spiritual disciplines are great (and necessary) when the goal is to know God better. Spiritual disciplines are soul-crushing when the aim is to get our metaphysical workout in each day, knowing that we could always exercise more if we were better Christians.”

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  • Favorite Quotes of the Week

  • Resisting the Inner Skeptic in Our Bible Reading. On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question I am ashamed to say that my Bible reading is often hijacked by a sense of doubt. It sometimes even feels more like a spiritual battle than an intellectual battle, and it scares me because it attacks my faith at the foundations — the truth of the Bible. Do you have any advice for attacking a spirit of doubt and cynicism when reading the Scriptures?”
  • Should Christians Keep the Sabbath? From one of the live Ask Ligonier events, Burk Parsons expresses the abiding importance of this creation ordinance.
  • Why Does God Choose the Foolish? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question “I have given my life to the Great Commission and desire to share the gospel to all nations. In 1 Corinthians 1:27, it says that ‘God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong.’ Here’s my question. Why didn’t God save all the worldly-wise to proclaim the gospel to the whole world? Wouldn’t that have made a faster and greater impact in world evangelization than simply choosing a bunch of foolish people to do his work?”
  • How Should Christians Study the Psalms? From one of the live Ask Ligonier events, Sinclair Ferguson advises us with several principles for reading the Psalter more deeply.
  • How Can I Explain Christian Joy to Unbelievers? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question How would you explain your experience of joy in God to a curious, unchurched non-Christian? Where would you begin? And how would you do it with language a non-Christian could easily follow?”
  • Do Christians Really Suffer in America? On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question “I am leading a Bible study through 1 Peter right now. And as you know, Peter makes it very clear that Christians will suffer, just as Christ did. I’m curious how we Christians suffer in a first-world country like America, where we are not physically persecuted for our beliefs. I don’t think I have ever really suffered for the sake of Christ. Feelings get hurt on social media — there’s a cultural pushback, of course — but I’ve never lost anything of value in this world due to being a Christian. Does this make me a weak, or a lazy, Christian? Or should I simply thank God for the rare peace I have enjoyed in this age?”
  • Ten Reasons You Need Unconditional Election. On this episode of the Ask Pastor John podcast, John Piper responds to the question “Can you tell me why believing in unconditional election matters? Isn’t this doctrine nitpicking, and divisive, more than edifying?”

  • Our sins are many, but His mercies are more: our sins are great, but His righteousness is greater: we are weak, but He is power. John Newton
  • “We know that for those who love God all things work together for good.” The Christian does not merely hold this as a theory, but he knows it as a matter of fact. Charles Spurgeon
  • Living the Christian life well is the best way to prepare yourself for death whenever it comes. Guy Waters
  • In many churches today, it is considered worse to judge evil than to do evil. Burk Parsons
  • All of my time is God’s time, and all of my time is my time by His delegation. God owns me and my time. R.C. Sproul
  • At your funeral, no one will mention or care about how many followers you had on social media. Nathan W. Bingham
  • Jesus is not a way to God. He is not one of many ways to Him. He is the only way to God. Steven Lawson
  • The life of following Jesus won’t be easy, but you will be secure in his loving care, and you’ll have a destiny that is guaranteed by grace. Paul Tripp
  • The Bible says that our real problem is that every one of us is building our identity on something besides Jesus. 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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