Links I Like (Weekend Edition)

Is It Possible that Jesus’ Body Was Left on the Cross?

Timothy Paul Jones:

If such critics have rightly reconstructed history, Good Friday was not good, and Resurrection Sunday was no triumph.

Jesus died, his corpse remained on the cross, and the resurrection was nothing more than a series of hallucinations and fabrications.

So what really happened to the body of Jesus?

Is there any historical foundation for believing that the body of Jesus was entombed in the way that the New Testament Gospels claim?

Or could it be that Crossan and other critics are correct?

Easter and the Great Wedding to Come

Jason Johnson:

The recognition of the death and resurrection of Jesus at Easter is not an isolated act of God but a pinnacle point in the ongoing bride-groom narrative running throughout the current of Scripture. It’s the celebration of God acquiring a bride for his Son through the ultimate price of death paid on the Cross. It’s the height of God’s radical, redemptive pursuit of a sinful and broken people to secure them as his beautifully treasured Bride.

Law And Gospel: Part 4

Tullian Tchividjian:

J. Gresham Machen counterintutively noted that “A low view of law always produces legalism; a high view of law makes a person a seeker after grace.” The reason this seems so counter-intuitive is because most people think that those who talk a lot about grace have a low view of God’s law (hence, the regular charge of antinomianism). Others think that those with a high view of the law are the legalists. But Machen makes the very compelling point that it’s a low view of the law that produces legalism because a low view of the law causes us to conclude that we can do it–the bar is low enough for us to jump over. A low view of the law makes us think that the standards are attainable, the goals are reachable, the demands are doable. It’s this low view of the law that caused Immanuel Kant to conclude that “ought implies can.” That is, to say that I ought to do something is to imply logically that I am able to do it.

Pixels Are People

N.W. Bingham:

As a family, this seven weeks—and the three to four months leading up to it—have taught us a lot. But as one who works in the online arena, do you know what has really becomemore clear to me than ever? Pixels are people.* The relationships I had via bits and bytes with folks from the US while I lived in Australia were real. Meeting people here in person for the first time wasn’t the beginning of a friendship but the continuation of an already existing one.

As the Lord our Savior Rose, So all His Followers Must Rise

The grotto of Gethsemane, where it is believed that Jesus was arrested following Judas' betrayal. Photo by Gary Hardman

Jesus rose, and as the Lord our Savior rose, so all his followers must rise. Die I must—this body must be a carnival for worms; it must be eaten by those tiny cannibals; peradventure it shall be scattered from one portion of the earth to another; the constituent particles of this my frame will enter into plants, from plants pass into animals, and thus be carried into far distant realms; but, at the blast of the archangel’s trumpet, every separate atom of my body shall find its fellow; like the bones lying in the valley of vision, though separated from one another, the moment God shall speak, the bone will creep to its bone; then the flesh shall come upon it; the four winds of heaven shall blow, and the breath shall return. So let me die, let beasts devour me, let fire turn this body into gas and vapor, all its particles shall yet again be restored; this very self-same, actual body shall start up from its grave, glorified and made like Christ’s body, yet still the same body, for God hath said it. Christ’s same body rose; so shall mine. O my soul, dost thou now dread to die? Thou wilt lose thy partner body a little while, but thou wilt be married again in heaven; soul and body shall again be united before the throne of God. The grave—what is it? It is the bath in which the Christian puts the clothes of his body to have them washed and cleansed. Death—what is it? It is the waiting-room where we robe ourselves for immortality; it is the place where the body, like Esther, bathes itself in spices that it may be fit for the embrace of its Lord. Death is the gate of life; I will not fear to die, then, but will say,

“Shudder not to pass the stream;
Venture all thy care on him;
Him whose dying love and power
Stilled its tossing, hushed its roar,
Safe in the expanded wave;
Gentle as a summer’s eve.
Not one object of his care
Ever suffered shipwreck there.”
 

Come, view the place then, with all hallowed meditation, where the Lord lay. Spend this afternoon, my beloved brethren, in meditating upon it, and very often go to Christ’s grave, both to weep and to rejoice.

Charles Spurgeon, “The Tomb of Jesus,” (April 8, 1855)

Dying For Those Who Hate Him

On the cross, we see the greatest act of love ever demonstrated, its effects reverberating down through history and permanently altering the lives of those who believe. The importance of the cross will never diminish. In heaven, Scripture tells us, the majestic beings around the throne of God worship by saying, “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!” (Revelation 5:12) When the love of God is extolled, both in heaven and on earth, the sacrifice of Christ on the cross is always the focal point, for there God showed his love in the most real and powerful way imaginable—by dying for those who hate him.

But the cross did not simply display love. On the cross, Jesus performed a real, tangible, beneficial action on our behalf. Though we are by nature children of wrath, Jesus died in order to achieve something for us. He “died for our sins” (1 Corinthians 15:3), so that we can be “justified by his blood” and “saved by him from the wrath of God” (Romans 5:9).

Perhaps no writer in Scripture says it better than the prophet Isaiah, despite the fact that he preceded Christ by centuries: “Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions; he was crushed for our iniquities; upon him was the chastisement that brought us peace, and with his stripes we are healed” (Isaiah 53:4–5). Scripture plainly and clearly teaches that Jesus died in our place, as our substitute, taking from God the punishment for our sins.

On the cross, Jesus performed the ultimate act of love, and that act genuinely accomplished something—the Son of God absorbed the wrath of God on our behalf, taking our guilt away and enabling us to receive Christ’s perfect righteousness credited to us, so that we might be presented before him as righteous.

Adapted from Casey Lute, But God… (Kindle Edition)

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Barabbas and Me

David Mathis:

Murder and rebellion. Rebellion is the precise thing the leaders and the people are charging Jesus with when they say he is “misleading the people” (verse 14) and “saying that he himself is Christ, a king” (verse 2). And murder is an offense that makes it clear that Barabbas not only deserves to be in prison, but he deserves death. Genesis 9:6 taught, “Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image.” Barabbas is no mere offender in rehab, but a murderer on Death Row.

$5 Friday at Ligonier

This week’s offerings include Dr. Sproul’s God Alone (audio/video download) and The Atonement of Jesus (audio download) teaching series, as well as A Holy Ambition: To Preach Where Christ Has Not Been Named by John Piper.

A Key Insight about Romans 7 from a Conversation with J. I. Packer

Ken Berding:

Packer gently leaned over the table, looked me in the eye, and said, “Young man, Paul wasn’t struggling with sin because he was such a sinner. Paul was struggling because he was such a saint. Sin makes you numb. People who sin over and over again become desensitized to sin.  The reason Paul’s “struggle” was so intense was not because he was caught in a web of sin, or because he thought of himself as hopelessly doomed to giving into the temptations that he faced. Rather, it was because Paul lived a life so sensitive to the Holy Spirit and passionate about the glory of God that he intensely felt his sins whenever he became aware that he had committed a sin (since he was not, of course, sinlessly perfect).”

(HT Trevin)

The Death of Death in the Death of Christ Means Victory Over Death for Those Who Believe

Thabiti Anyabwile:

The death of death in the death of Christ means victory for those who believe in Him.  Jesus has destroyed death and brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. Eternal life and immortality come to all those who believe that Jesus died and rose again to save sinners.  This is the most basic promise of the gospel.  We hear this promise over and over again throughout the New Testament.  It’s an old truth with fresh meaning.  Christian, listen to these promises and stand in them.  My friend if you are not yet a believer in Jesus Christ, listen to these promises and received them by faith today.

Don’t Build Prayer into Your Life, Build Your Life Around Prayer

We all know that prayer is supposed to be a regular part of our lives, but how do we cultivate a greater, more robust prayer life? On this matter, I can think of no better example than Martin Luther. Luther spent years developing his prayer life; he saw prayer as the “daily business of a Christian.” In 1535, Luther’s barber, Peter, asked him for advice on how to pray. Luther, who had spent many years preparing resources to train pastors, parents and children in prayer, promptly wrote him a letter, The Way to Pray. What’s astounding about this letter is the “secret” of Luther’s prayer life is so simple. First, Luther writes:

…when I feel that I have become cool or joyless in prayer because of other tasks or thoughts (for the flesh and the devil always impede and obstruct prayer), I take my little Psalter, hurry to my room, or, if it be the day and hour for it, to the church where a congregation is assembles and, as time permits, I say quietly to myself and word-for-word the Lord’s Prayer, Ten Commandments, the Creed, and if I have time, some words of Christ or of Paul, or some psalms, just as a child might do.1

“How do I pray more effectively,” we ask? According to Luther, whenever prayer is joyless and cool, pray through the Lord’s Prayer, the Ten Commandments and the Apostles’ Creed. But this does not mean mere repetition, but personal application as Luther urged deep meditation on each, focusing on instruction, thanksgiving, confession and petition.

Secondly, Luther urged that believers set and maintain specific times of prayer:

{It is a good thing to let prayer be the first business in the morning and the last at night. Guard yourself carefully against those false, deluding ideas that tell you, Wait a little while. I will pray in an hour; first I must attend to this or that. Such thoughts get you away from prayer into other affairs, which so hold your attention and involve you that nothing comes out of prayer for that day.2

“How do I pray more effectively,” we ask? By determining the time and place in which to pray and sticking to it. Don’t build prayer into your life, Luther says; build your life around prayer.

Links I Like

The Cross and Christian Blogging

John Starke:

The problem is that we tend not to follow Lewis and Chesterton all the way. In other words, we adopt their sarcasm and wit but not the spirituality of their aims. They guided readers toward the place where wisdom could be found, introducing them to a kingdom that stands on firmer ground. We thrive on exposing the fool. We hold the doctrine of J. Gresham Machen but carry the tone of H. L. Mencken.

Book Giveaway

Over on Goodreads (the social network for book lovers), I’m giving away three copies of Awaiting a Saviorhead on over and enter!

The Doctrine of Propitiation (video)

R.W. Glenn:

[tentblogger-youtube a0EKBf1FrGY]

Themelios 37.1

The latest issue of Themelios is now available. From D.A. Carson’s editorial:

With this issue we welcome Dr. Mike Ovey to his own regular column in Themelios: “Off the Record.” Dr. Ovey is principal of Oak Hill College, London, a theological institution that trains both Anglicans and Independents for the work of the ministry. In addition to his many articles, not a few of them published in Churchman, Mike is probably best known around the world for his part in bringing to birth the important book Pierced for Our Transgressions: Rediscovering the Glory of Penal Substitution. Adding to Themelios a wide-ranging and free-wheeling opinion piece from someone as well informed as Mike can only benefit our readers.

Making the Gospel Explicit: An Interview with Matt Chandler

Trevin Wax interviews Matt Chandler about The Explicit Gospel:

What’s the difference between presenting the plan of salvation in a sermon and being “gospel-centered” in a sermon? Are those one and the same? Or do you mean something more when you urge Christians to make the gospel explicit in preaching and teaching?

I listen to a lot of sermons, and usually, “presenting the plan of salvation” is an add-on as you wrap up a sermon. Being gospel-centered is attaching the text to the reconciling work of God in Jesus Christ. Whether that attachment is to what God is doing in an individual, in a church body, to the domains of a given culture, or to creation at large is up to the text. One assumes that people understand the gospel and clarifies it at the end in case they don’t. The other weaves the message of the gospel throughout the sermon so that people, by the Spirit’s power, can get multiple “aha” moments as the sermon is preached.

The Backlist: The Top Ten Posts on Blogging Theologically


Let’s take a trip back in time to see the top ten posts in March:

  1. Everyday Theology: God Won’t Give You More Than You Can Handle (July 2009)
  2. Everyday Theology: God helps those who help themselves (July 2009)
  3. John Piper on Mark Driscoll & John MacArthur (May 2009)
  4. The Dos and Don’ts of Book Reviews (or at least how I do them) (January 2011)
  5. Book Review: Real Marriage by Mark and Grace Driscoll (December 2011)
  6. His Name was Smeagol (April 2010)
  7. Book Review: Love Wins by Rob Bell (March 2011)
  8. 3 Reasons Why I’m Hopeful About the A29 Leadership Change (March 2012)
  9. #Kindle Deals for the Christian Reader (March 2012)
  10. Should Christians “Name Names”? (March 2012)

And just for fun, here’s the next ten:

  1. Lessons from Nehemiah (Page)
  2. Notes from #TheGospelProject Webcast (March 2012)
  3. Everyday Theology: Preach the Gospel always, if necessary use words (July 2009)
  4. Solomon’s Advice for Bloggers (March 2012)
  5. Book Reviews (Page)
  6. Everyday Theology (Page)
  7. Book Review: How to Read the Bible through the Jesus Lens by Michael Williams (March 2012)
  8. Meet Hudson (March 2012)
  9. Where Is Jesus In The Old Testament? (June 2011)
  10. Book Review: From the Resurrection to His Return by D.A. Carson (March 2012)

If you haven’t had a chance to read any of these posts, I hope you’ll take a few minutes today to check them out.

Faithfulness is Obedience and Obedience is Success

Here’s a passage I’ve been continuing to chew on from Matt Chandler’s new book, The Explicit Gospel:

One of the things we don’t preach well is that ministry that looks fruitless is constantly happening in the Scriptures. We don’t do conferences on that. There aren’t too many books written about how you can toil away all your life and be unbelievably faithful to God and see little fruit this side of heaven. And yet God sees things differently. We always have to be a little bit wary of the idea that numeric growth and enthusiastic response are always signs of success. The Bible isn’t going to support that. Faithfulness is success; obedience is success.

What we learn about God’s call to Isaiah provides a strange sense of freedom. A hearer’s response is not our responsibility; our responsibility is to be faithful to God’s call and the message of the gospel. No, a hearer’s response is his or her responsibility. But one of the mistakes we can make in our focusing on individual response in the gospel on the ground is to lose sight of God’s sovereign working behind our words and actions and our hearer’s response. Receptivity and rejection are ultimately dependent upon God’s will, not ours.3 Paul reminds us, “[God] says to Moses, ‘I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.’ So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy” (Rom. 9:15–16). From the ground, we say what we choose to say and hear what we choose to hear. From the air, our saying is clearly empowered—“No one can say ‘Jesus is Lord’ except in the Holy Spirit” (1 Cor. 12:3)—and our hearing is clearly God-contingent—“having the eyes of your hearts enlightened” (Eph. 1:18).

You can find a whole bunch of verses about God’s moving and gathering large groups of people, which means if there’s numeric growth and much enthusiasm, we can’t say that it’s not a work of God or that God isn’t moving. I’m just saying that I guarantee you there’s some old dude in some town that most of us have never heard of faithfully preaching to nine people every week, and when we get to glory, we’ll be awed at his house. We’ll be awed at the reward God has for him. In the end, we have this idea being uncovered in Isaiah that God hardens hearts, that people hear the gospel successfully proclaimed and end up not loving God but hardened toward the things of God.

Matt Chandler (with Jared Wilson), The Explicit Gospel, pp. 75-76

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The Difference Between Doubts and Questions

Douglas Wilson:

We grow as Christians when we question, even if the questions are difficult, requiring hard answers. But when we doubt, we dry up and our spiritual vitality is destroyed. What is the difference? The answer is straight-forward. Questions have answers, and doubts do not.

New Music from Page  CXVI

Friends, We’re giving away an entire album again in celebration of Easter! Tell all your peeps. We’ve even including a song off our upcoming album, Re:Hymns Re-imagined by Derek Webb. Derek Webb remixed and reimagined 7 of our hymns, and it’s coming out June 12th, 2012. Enjoy!

Why Christians Are Not the Point of Easter

Dan Darling:

Some preachers get really fired up by a crowd of nonchurch people. They are gifted evangelists who are always at ease sharing their faith with hostile hearers. In a Christian sort of way, I envy them. I get nervous. This is a big moment. This could be the only time that some people will hear the gospel. I don’t want to mess it up. This is where God reminds me that He can use my clumsy gospel efforts and form the words to penetrate the heart of sinners. He is sovereign and for that I’m glad.

This year, God has impressed upon me this central idea of the Resurrection: Christianity is not about Christians, but about Christ.

Book Review: The Explicit Gospel by Matt Chandler with Jared Wilson

When we think of missions, what do we picture? People groups in faraway lands? Perhaps major urban centers and cultural hubs like Los Angeles or New York City? If you really want to get ambitious, maybe the province of Quebec?  But how many of us really think of church-folk—especially those in the Bible Belt–as a mission field?

As the pastor of The Village Church, Pastor Matt Chandler has seen firsthand that there is as great a need for the gospel in Texas as in Kathmandu. But where in many contexts the gospel has simply never gained a foothold, in churched cultures, the problem is that the gospel is assumed and supplanted by something else altogether—moralistic, therapeutic deism.

The moralistic, therapeutic deism passing for Christianity in many of the churches these young adults grew up in includes talk about Jesus and about being good and avoiding bad—especially about feeling good about oneself—and God factored into all of that, but the gospel message simply wasn’t there.What I found was that for a great many young twentysomethings and thirtysomethings, the gospel had been merely assumed, not taught or proclaimed as central. It hadn’t been explicit. (p. 13)

It’s this desire to see the gospel proclaimed as central that has been the driving force of his ministry and is the heart of his book The Explicit Gospel (written with Jared Wilson).

The Gospel on the Ground and the Sinfulness of Sin

Divided into three parts, The Explicit Gospel examines the gospel from two perspectives before moving into its implications and applications. The first part, “The Gospel on the Ground,” is the essentially the gospel as man’s need for salvation (what one theologian might derisively call the “salvationist” view of the gospel). Here, Chandler uses the God-Man-Christ-Response motif to help readers catch the sense of wonder at the nature and character of God and horror at the awfulness of our sinful condition:

The universe shudders in horror that we have this infinitely valuable, infinitely deep, infinitely rich, infinitely wise, infinitely loving God, and instead of pursuing him with steadfast passion and enthralled fury—instead of loving him with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength; instead of attributing to him glory and honor and praise and power and wisdom and strength—we just try to take his toys and run. It is still idolatry to want God for his benefits but not for himself. [The universe] shudders because [it] is the theater of God’s glory and the Scriptures portray this theater as having the instinct itself that it is there to showcase worship. When we, who have been placed as stewards over God’s creation, go rogue and worship not the Creator but the creation, the theater is shaken by this blasphemous treason. (pp. 39-40)

“The universe shudders,” and this reader couldn’t help but do the same when reading this passage. Chandler gets just how bad sin truly is—he understands, as Owen put it, the sinfulness of sin; but he equally understands the grace of God, reminding us that it is all of grace that any hear the message of Christ’s atoning work and are saved. “Blessed are the eyes that see and the ears that hear because the Spirit of God has opened them to do so,” he writes. “The power in the gospel is not the dynamic presentation of the preacher or the winsomeness of the witness. . . . The power in the gospel is the Spirit’s applying the saving work of Jesus Christ to the heart of a hearer” (p. 77).

Chandler gets the gospel exactly right in is understanding of the God-Man-Christ-Response pattern—but he also rightly reminds us that this is not the only way the gospel is revealed in Scripture. [Read more...]

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Christianity in Crisis? A Response to Andrew Sullivan

Trevin Wax:

Sullivan wants to take Christ’s teaching without Christ Himself. His vision tries to deliver Christ’s message of love without the atoning cross that gives love its meaning. It wants Christ’s justice without the victorious resurrection that launches the new world God has promised , the new world that totally changes the landscape for how we view everything: ethics, morals, politics, art, law.

An Opportunity For God To Triumph

Mark Altrogge:

God doesn’t afflict us just so he can get glory from it – he’s not sadistic and never does anything evil.  He’s in control of all things – he could prevent us from suffering if he wanted to.  But sometimes his plan includes that we suffer so he can triumph over it for his glory.

Sometimes God displays his glory by ending our trials; sometimes he triumphs in the midst of them.

Christian Bookshop Ossett

If you’re in the UK and looking for a place to get solid Christian books (including Cruciform Press titles), be sure to check out this shop in Ossett.

Secularism with the Gloves Off: Vanderbilt University’s Assault on Religious Organizations

Al Mohler:

In more recent months, Vanderbilt’s administration decided to push secularism to the extreme — launching a virtual vendetta against religious organizations on campus. Officials of the university informed religious groups that had been recognized student organizations that they would have to comply with an absolute non-discrimination policy. This means that religious organizations (primarily Christian) must now allow any Vanderbilt student to be a candidate for a leadership office, regardless of religious beliefs or sexual orientation. In other words, a Christian student group would be forced to allow the candidacy of an atheist. A group of Christians who believe in the Bible’s standard of sexual morality would be required to allow the candidacy of a homosexual member. There can be absolutely no discrimination, the university insists, even if that means that Christian organizations are no longer actually Christian.

Free eBook:

Crossway’s offer on this book ends today, so make sure you get it while you can (if you’re not sure, read my review here).

Hellbound

This new documentary from the makers of Expelled could be a very interesting examination of the debate over the doctrine of eternal judgment. Here’s the trailer:

[tentblogger-youtube mGfY_LyYYUg]

Intolerance, Tolerance and the Implausibility of Opposing Views

The charge of intolerance has come to wield enormous power in much of Western culture – at least as much as the charge of “communist” during the McCarthy years. It functions as a “defeater.” A defeater belief is a belief that defeats other beliefs – i.e., if you hold a defeater belief to be true (whether it is true or not is irrelevant), you cannot possibly hold certain other beliefs to be true: the defeater belief rules certain other beliefs out of court and thus defeats them. For instance, if you believe that there is no one way to salvation and that those who think there is only one way to salvation are ignorant and intolerant, then voices that insist Islam is the only way, or that Jesus is the only way, will not be credible to you: you will dismiss their beliefs as ignorant and intolerant, nicely defeated by your own belief that there cannot possibly be only one way to salvation. Your belief has defeated theirs.

So if a Christian articulates a well-thought-out exposition of who Jesus is and what he has done, including how his cross and resurrection constitute the only way by which human beings can be reconciled to God, the person who holds the defeater belief I’ve just described may listen with some intellectual interest but readily dismiss everything you say without much thought. Put together several such defeater beliefs and make them widely popular, and you have created an implausibility structure: opposing beliefs are thought so implausible as to be scarcely worth listening to, let alone compelling or convincing.

D.A. Carson, The Intolerance of Tolerance (Kindle Edition)

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Jude and His Sources: Non-Canonical Books

Phillip J. Long:

It is possible that Jude uses these texts because they are popular with the false teachers. In my post on Jude’s use of the Hebrew Bible I commented that Jude alludes to the wilderness tradition frequently, perhaps his opponents used the wilderness tradition and a book like 1 Enoch in their own teaching. The allusion to the Testament of Moses may be appropriate since the event took place in the wilderness and the end of that period of Israel’s history. The Qumran Community immediately comes to mind, since they are in the wilderness, not far from Nebo and made use of 1 Enoch. But Jude seems to imply the opponents are a perversion of Christian teaching, so perhaps they are a Essene like group which has accepted Jesus as Messiah.

Cheap eBooks

Found some terrific deals for the Kindle:

The Mega Millions Lottery Is a Suicidal Craze

John Piper:

Tonight a ticket will be chosen worth over half a billion dollars. Lottery agents in New York were selling 1.3 million Mega Millions tickets per hour Thursday. Officials were expecting to sell about 1.2 billion tickets total before the drawing. “Americans spend about $60 billion on the lottery every year,” says Stephen Dubner, co-author of “Freakonomics.” “More than $500 per American household goes to playing the lottery.” (CBS This Morning) There are at least seven reasons you should not gamble with your money in this way — and should tell your congressmen not to support it.

Let us not be the spot-finders

Spurgeon via Ray Ortlund:

We should be merciful to one another in seeking never to look at the worst side of a brother’s character.  Oh, how quick some are to spy out other people’s faults!  They hear that Mr. So-and-so is very useful in the church, and they say, ‘Yes, he is, but he has a very curious way of going to work, has he not?  And he is so eccentric.’  Well, did you ever know a good man who was very successful, who was not a little eccentric?

How to Attend a Conference as Yourself

Peter Bregman:

So how, at a conference when you don’t know anyone, can you engage in a conversation without identifying your role? It’s not easy. You’ll be fighting against the tide. But try asking open-ended questions and try getting personal. Eventually you’ll find out more about your fellow conference-goers and they’ll find out more about you.

The Deeps

Lord Jesus, give me a deeper repentance, a horror of sin, a dread of its approach. Help me chastely to flee it and jealously to resolve that my heart shall be Thine alone.

Give me a deeper trust, that I may lose myself to find myself in Thee, the ground of my rest, the spring of my being. Give me a deeper knowledge of Thyself as saviour, master, lord, and king. Give me deeper power in private prayer, more sweetness in Thy Word, more steadfast grip on its truth. Give me deeper holiness in speech, thought, action, and let me not seek moral virtue apart from Thee.

Plough deep in me, great Lord, heavenly husbandman, that my being may be a tilled field, the roots of grace spreading far and wide, until Thou alone art seen in me, Thy beauty golden like summer harvest, Thy fruitfulness as autumn plenty.

I have no master but Thee, no law but Thy will, no delight but Thyself, no wealth but that Thou givest, no good but that Thou blessest, no peace but that Thou bestowest. I am nothing but that Thou makest me. I have nothing but that I receive from Thee. I can be nothing but that grace adorns me. Quarry me deep, dear Lord, and then fill me to overflowing with living water.

Adapted from “The Deeps,” Puritan Prayers & Devotions (Kindle Edition)