Favorite Finds Friday: 04-13-18
Friday Favorite Finds

Favorite Finds Friday: 04-13-18

Favorite Finds Friday:

04-13-18

The following are a collection of articles, sites, podcasts, and other finds I have found this week that I thought I would recommend. I hope you find these especially encouraging and edifying in your walk with Christ.

Bible

Context Matters: The Widow’s Mite
“Context matters. If we learn to read the Bible for what it is—and not as a collection of independently assembled inspirational stories—we’ll discover that some of our most familiar passages don’t actually mean what we’ve always assumed.”

Why Study the Book of Judges?
“The narratives contained in the book of Judges were written to ‘bear witness’ or ‘testify’ to the person and work of Jesus and the great salvation that he has achieved for his people.”

Should We Choose Jesus over the Bible?
“If reading and meditating on Scripture is the means by which we are transformed from one degree of glory to the next, into the likeness of Christ (2 Cor. 3:12–18), then we must be devoted to it as it is, the Word of God, the power of Christ in us. It must be the place we are rooted to grow, like a tree planted by streams of water (Ps. 1), as a light to a dark path (119:105), and sweet honey to the taste (v. 103). We submit to it and obey it because we intend to follow Christ and no other.”

How the Exodus Shapes the Whole Bible

Christian Living

Equipping the Saints
Devotional by Kelly Smith covering 2 Timothy 3:16-17.

Working Out Your Salvation
“Consequently, this command should never be disconnected from faith in Christ that results from grace, not works (1:29), but instead it should be seen as mapping out a pursuit of the fullness of salvation. This includes the process of sanctification, with which this command is usually and correctly identified.”

How Do You Evaluate a Pastor?
“The minister will never be perfect, but he should be making progress, by the grace of God. And the church where he serves should be able to mark this progress with gratitude to God.”

Rediscovering the Lost Art of Lament
“The Bible is not ashamed of lament. In the Psalms, 60 of the 150 are categorized as lament psalms—40%. There is one book in the Bible that is devoted to laments, and it is aptly named Lamentations. Why does the Bible embrace a lament? Because it is honest about human experience. It doesn’t settle for some superficially shallow way of describing what’s going on, as if to pretend that suffering is not serious or that it is just an illusion. We, too, must learn to meaningfully and honestly express the anguish of our hearts, if we are to avoid superficiality or pretense.”

Learning to Trust Again (after a deep hurt)
“Learning to trust again after a hurt is absolutely not easy. In fact you may feel scared and exhuasted. But remember faith is not based on your feelings — whether fear or anger or shame. Rather, its object is God himself.”

The Gospel and Your Time
“Therefore, we should live with the length of eternity, not the length of our earthly days, on the forefront of our minds by stewarding our time like our money—saving it, investing it, and using it, with wisdom and intentionality.”

How We Ought To Speak
“As God’s chosen people, there is a clear and biblical manner in which we ought to speak. Paul tells the church at Colossae to put away slander, obscene talk, and to abstain from lying (Col 3:8-9). In place of those activities, they are to teach and admonish one another and to sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs with thankfulness (Col 3:16). They are to continue steadfastly in prayer (Col 4:2) and speak graciously, winsomely, wisely, and sensitively with outsiders (Col 4:5-6).”

The Early Christians Experienced Happiness in Christ Despite Suffering; So Can We
“Nanci and I felt like the takeaway was, “Christians live miserable lives now, but in the end Heaven will make up for it.” Well, true, Heaven will more than make up for a miserable life, but the early Christians, while enduring some miseries to be sure, were characterized in this life by a transcendent joy and hope and peace.”

The Beauty of Submission
“But if we’re all equally made in the image of God, then our varying roles are merely the different ways we work to serve others, not statements about our value.”

Trevin Wax on Difficult Things In Life

 

Church

Favorite Finds Friday: 04-13-18

Do Not Underestimate a Prayer Meeting
“The fruit of a corporate prayer service could be the actual unity of a local church. Imagine the sweetness of a church that enjoys true unity. Sins have been confessed, broken roads fixed, wounds healed, and the ugly effects of Satan’s divisive schemes defeated. When a church comes together to pray together, not only will they pray vertically, but they will pray horizontally—lifting up one another’s needs—physically and spiritually. When division is not avoided in prayer, unity can be achieved. Far too often people avoid the reality of division because confession can be messy and often requires transparency and vulnerability.”

Attending Corporate Worship
“We are saved as individuals, but we are not saved to an individualized faith.”

Preachers, Let’s Stop Stepping on Toes
This article is aimed at preachers but it can be applied to each of us in our own area of ministry, discipleship, or even engaging with people online.

Culture

Applying Lincoln’s Logic to the Abortion Debate
“The importance of Lincoln’s logic should not be overlooked. Lincoln understood that if you attempt to establish human rights or personhood by appealing to a set of arbitrary, degreed properties such as color and intellect, properties which carry no moral weight or significance and which none of us share equally, then you end up undermining human rights for everyone.”

Would Christ have had to die for the social justice gospel to be true?
“When we focus exclusively on obedience/morality/social justice and diminish the role of the Gospel in these matters then we end up with something very different than the teaching of Jesus. Instead we get nothing more than moralistic religion. It is supremely naive to think that humanity, in its sinfulness and brokenness, can bring about anything approaching a social justice utopia.”

Evangelism

Combatting the Lies the World Believes
“There is no argument that can awaken the conscience or impart new spiritual life. There’s no speech that can soften the sinful heart of stone.”

Family

When Your Spouse Won’t Join a Solid Church
“Among the many grievous situations in which a believer may find himself or herself, having a spouse who is either unbelieving or unwilling to join a biblical church can be one of the most burdensome.”

History

This Day in History: The Execution of Dietrich Bonhoeffer
“At the break of dawn on April 9, 1945, Dietrich Bonhoeffer was hanged. As they prepared him for his death, he preached a final sermon. His words were remembered and later retold, by a captured RAF pilot: ‘This is for me the end, the beginning of life.'”

What Made Paul Washer’s “Shocking Message” So Very Shocking? (video)
“Paul Washer’s sermon at the 2002 youth evangelism conference sent a shock wave around the world. And it became one of the most watched sermons of all time. So what made this shocking youth sermon so very shocking? Let’s give it a closer look.”

A (Very) Brief History of the Baptist Church
“Although some have believed that the Baptist church descended directly from the historical Anabaptist movement, this is not the case. While there are some similarities, the differences in theology, geography, and historical development are significant. Current religious affiliations descending from the Anabaptist movement include the Amish, Hutterites, and Mennonites.
“The Baptist church as we know it was not founded until the 17th Century, and there were two distinct groups that came about simultaneously in England: The General Baptists and the Particular Baptists.”

Prayer

Prayer and Legalism
“A wrong perspective on prayer may well come from thinking of it as playing a part in establishing our acceptance with God. Prayer that is not the grateful response of the justified sinner is likely to degenerate into an attempt to gain acceptance.”

God Taught Us to Pray
“As we gather to pray together, we may struggle to know what to say to God in prayer, but we can always turn to his Word for help where he models it perfectly.”

10 Prayers to Pray Before Church
“As such, we should not enter church like any other place, but should prepare our hearts in prayer. Let these 10 prayers set your mind on God’s purposes for church and prepare your heart to worship the King.”

Resources

The Process of Biblical Heart Change | A Review
“This resource is so impactful that I have taken my ladies’ Bible study group through it as well. It has greatly helped the women in my class to have a more biblical view of the areas in their lives that need to change and as a whole, they are on the road to producing greater spiritual fruit as a result. ”

Science

The Puzzle of Pluto
“Since it’s discovery in 1930, tiny Pluto has been a mystery. Lying at the edge of the solar system far from earth, Pluto is visible only with large telescopes. Even then, it appears as a small, faint speck (as a professional astronomer, I’ve seen Pluto only a few times). In 2006 Pluto suffered the indignity of being demoted from the ranks of planets. Astronomers that year created a new class of objects, dwarf planets, to accommodate Pluto and a few other large asteroids. Pluto is now viewed as one of the largest of the trans-Neptunian objects, a group of icy asteroids orbiting the sun beyond the orbit of Neptune, the most distant planet from the sun.”

Theology

Predestination destroys legalism
“Predestination destroys legalism. If salvation is by Christ ALONE, it leaves no room for boasting or trusting in ourselves, even a little. It strips us bare and forces us to abandon all hope in our own wisdom, will-power, efforts or rules.”

Are There Degrees of Sin?
“God tells us that entrance into heaven will be only on the basis of the merit of Christ, but once we get to heaven, rewards will be dispensed according to works. Those who have been abundant in good works will receive an abundant reward. Those who have been derelict and negligent in good works will have a small reward in heaven. By the same token, those who have been grievous enemies of God will have severe torments in hell. Those who have been less hostile will have a lesser punishment at the hands of God. He is perfectly just, and when He judges, He will take into account all of the extenuating circumstances.”

Jonathan Edwards and Why I am a Cessationist
“Scripture demands we test the spirits to discern if they originate with God (1 John 4:1). The Israelites’ greatest threat wasn’t from the pagan culture outside their camp, but from false prophets within—many of whom drew larger crowds and were better known than genuine prophets.”

The Wrath of God
“In some circles today, the love of God is elevated above the wrath of God with clear emphasis, and that’s a tragic mistake. It does not reveal the true nature and revelation of God as he has put on display in the pages of Scripture. We must be balanced and true to what God’s Word actually states. God is not a loose cannon losing his temper with people. God’s wrath is not a reckless rage, an uncontrollable anger, a senseless fury, or an unjust vengeance. The wrath of God is a precise and controlled response to the belittling of his holiness. Everyone who perishes under the wrath of God in eternity will not be because God lost his temper with them and mistreated them. On that day, everyone will know that God has treated them with precise justice. Three trillion years into eternity every sinner who is cast into hell will still know that God never mistreated anyone.”

What is Justification?

Podcasts

Favorite Finds Friday: 04-13-18Renewing Your Mind Minute: Ethics & Meaning (01:00)

Renewing Your Mind Minute: The Original Cinderella Story (01:00)

Renewing Your Mind Minute: Foreordination (01:00)

5 Minutes in Church History: The Minister, a Book, and a Controversy (05:00)

Truth in Love: A Biblical Response To Panic (feat. Dr. David Powlison) (08:34)

Truth in Love: Godly Leadership In The Home (feat. Dr. Stuart Scott) (08:07)

Truth in Love: Is It Your Fault If Your Child Is Lost? (feat. Dr. Jim Newheiser) (10:13)

Open Book: R.C. Sproul and Dolezal’s All That Is in God (09:52)

Thankful Homemaker: When the Days are Difficult and Exhausting (19:06)

CCEF: Reading Scripture with David Powlison (23:15)

The Briefing: Friday, Apr. 6, 2018 (25:29)

  • A tension that will not last: LGBT policies lead to a theological identity crisis at some Christian colleges
  • Is there a theological dimension to Catholic colleges’ success on the basketball court?
  • Evolution can’t explain babies’ unique ability to learn
  • A higher form of nonsense: Why grandparents are not the gift of evolution, but the gift of God’s perfect plan

The Briefing: Monday, Apr. 9, 2018 (21:54)

  • Tragedies in Canada and Syria expose differences between natural evil and moral evil
  • Syria, chemical weapons, and Just War Theory: Why there is no way to underestimate man’s capacity for moral evil
  • Secular world grapples with the reality of evil even as it lacks the basic categories for understanding its meaning

The Briefing: Tuesday, Apr. 10, 2018 (21:59)

  • A tempest not only in a teapot: Firing of Kevin Williamson exposes dominant worldview of secular culture
  • Why threatening women who get an abortion with criminal action is not the way to limit abortion
  • A controversy within a controversy: Who are the real abortion extremists?
  • Liberal columnist argues that only one side—yes, his side—has actual ideas and real influence

The Briefing: Wednesday, Apr. 11, 2018 (24:33)

  • As Zuckerberg goes to Capitol Hill, Facebook faces fallout from misuse of user data
  • Could government regulation of social media lead to a crackdown on religious speech?
  • Will outrage over data leaks lead to a change in users’ behavior? So far, the answer is “no”
  • Facebook’s imperative above all other imperatives: Simply connect
  • Washington DC vs. San Francisco: America’s new intellectual centers collide

The Briefing: Thursday, Apr. 12, 2018 (22:48)

  • Appointment of first humanist as lead chaplain is yet another signpost along the way to secularization
  • ‘Red Letter Revival’ attempts to plant new political theory on parts of the New Testament while being openly opposed to the rest of it
  • As governments escalate predation on their most vulnerable citizens, gambling losses reach record highs

Renewing Your Mind: The Sanctity of Marriage (26:25)

Renewing Your Mind: The Great Awakening (26:25)

Renewing Your Mind: Paul at Corinth (26:25)

Renewing Your Mind: Running Away from God (26:25)

Renewing Your Mind: Father Mapple’s Sermon (26:25)

Renewing Your Mind: Salvation Is of the Lord (26:25)

Renewing Your Mind: Jonah’s Anger (26:25)

Belonging Before Believing: What’s the point of prayer? (32:00)

Women’s Hope: Friendship Foundations With Ellen Dykas | Relate Series No. 1 (32:05)

She Proves Faithful: Should Women Know Theology? (34:09)

Theology Driven: Fellowship (45:23)

Theology Driven: Perfect Obedience (33:34)

The Bald Calvinist: Nate Pickowicz (48:29)

The Balt Calvinist: Peter, An Apostle of Jesus Christ (1 Peter 1:1-2) (23:58)