Welcome to September! We’ve made it through our first full month here in America, and today marks the beginning of my second month at LifeWay. I’m already trying to figure out where the last few weeks went.
Given that it’s the first day of the month, there are going to be a whole bunch of new monthly deals at Amazon (quality varies), and Christian Audio‘s got a new audiobook of the month for you to enjoy. A few specific books worth mentioning are:
- The Christian’s Work of Daily Dying by John Owen—99¢
- Embracing Obscurity by Anonymous—99¢
- Brothers, We Are Not Professionals by John Piper—99¢
- Connected by Erin Davis—99¢
- The Gospel Commission by Michael Horton—$2.99
- A Model of Christian Maturity by D.A. Carson—$2.99
Dave Furman’s new book, Being There: How to Love Those Who are Hurting, is now available. Check out this video based on the ideas from the book:
It’s become trendy in some evangelical circles to claim that we need to rescue Jesus and the NT from the megalomaniac, genocidal God of the OT. That OT God can’t really be what God is like because, well, Jesus isn’t like that. (And he’s God, after all.) Evangelicals, then, need to get Jesus right before they worry about getting the Bible right. And “to understand Jesus” means, at least in part, to understand that “love your enemies” is at odds with “show them no mercy.”
Christian scholars and lay-bloggers alike are picking up this dry, stale bread in hopes of selling it to the public as a buttered loaf straight from the oven. But people know stale bread when they taste it. And they should rightly spit it out.
What’s funny, though, is that if you asked me if I was insecure a few years ago I would have laughed in your face. I was confident in God’s sovereignty. I knew that I didn’t have all the answers—or so I said—but I knew the one who did (secretly me). I’d say that early on I had way more confidence but much more insecurity. And that isn’t surprising the more we trust in the sand of our own efforts the less secure we’ll actually be.
When you are massively hurt by another Christian who claims the Bible as the justification for their actions, the temptation is to dismiss certain Biblical truths altogether. To associate a truth with the hurt and then come to the conclusion that it was never true in the first place.
It’s very easy to make the faulty assumption that a truth misapplied to you must not be true at all.
Kevin DeYoung shares a number of powerful quotes from Os Guinness.
We think of the hypocritical person as a self-righteous oaf, pounding the table to get across God’s condemnation of sin, oblivious to the stench of sin and selfishness in his own life. We picture the hypocrite with arms crossed toward other people and a nose slanted upwards. Then, we shake our heads at these hypocrites who think they’re sinless, and we feel safely distant. Well, at least, I’m not like that!
But what if this picture is all wrong? What if the true image of hypocrisy is blurry? How might sin and rebellion sneak into our lives unaware?
I have been around myself for around 37 years, and if I’ve learned one thing during that time it’s that my heart is constantly divided. It’s divided between good and evil; sacrifice and self-indulgence; justice and entitlement; being right and being validated. And if it’s true that, in every argument, I always bring that divided heart with me into the debate, then I always have something to apologize for. Even if I’m right.
A favorite from the archives:
Discovering God’s will is one of those topics that Christians (at least, North American ones) never seem to tire of. We want to know if what we’re doing is what God wants for us, his “best” for us, if you will. There are tons of books on the subject (only a couple that are worth reading in my opinion, though), lots of sermons and blog posts. And, honestly, if you read most of them, you’d think there was some sort of big secret—that God was leaving his will for our lives shrouded in mystery.
A mystery you must solve in order to have your best life now™.