Happy America Day to my friends in the United States. We’ve heard good things about the fireworks in the city we’re visiting right now, so it should be fun times tonight! And, of course, happy Monday to the rest of us.
On the Kindle deal front, Crossway has a number of books on sale focused on church planting:
- Jesus Driven Ministry by Ajith Fernando—$3.99
- The Deliberate Church by Mark Dever and Paul Alexander—$3.99
- Church Planting is for Wimps by Mike McKinley—$3.99
- Churches Partnering Together by Chris Bruno and Matt Dirks—$3.99
You may also want to consider The Devil in Pew Number Seven by Rebecca Nichols Alonzo with Bob DeMoss ($2.99), The Truth About Forgiveness by John MacArthur ($3.99), and Packing Light by Allison Fallon ($3.99).
The current state of religious liberty in our country is growing more and more ominous. If this trajectory continues, religious freedoms will soon be limited to the “freedom to worship”. In other words, religious people will be free to worship within the four walls of their church, but will be hindered to act on those beliefs in the public square. However, faith is integrated into all areas of life. We are the church both gathered and scattered. Our theology not only informs our doxology, it also animates our daily living (praxis).
As I read the lyrics of the songs in The Hobbit, I was struck afresh with how important singing is for the saints. We sing not only because of what God has done in Christ but also in view of what he will do. We sing to remember, and we sing for hope. And as was the case with characters in the book, songs strengthen us in the face of fear, trial, and battle. And we mustn’t minimize the power of singing together. The characters joined in song with others. By singing together they grew stronger together.
I’ve been a Christian for 53 years and in vocational Christian ministry for 45 years. During this time I’ve given a great deal of thought to the content of all the many lists in Scripture. And I’ve come to the measured conclusion that, when it comes to the indispensable qualities for being a leader in the body of Christ and in life in general, there’s one characteristic that perhaps should be placed at the top: teachability.
This is the kingdom of sexual lust — a world of soft porn and free porn — and secrets contained in cleared web browsers. What you behold, boys, you become. If you steep your tea too long, it becomes bitter. Likewise, if you sit and soak in pornographic fantasies, your life will have a bitter taste. At first the flavors might taste sweet, but bitterness will always be the end result. And the bitterness will be shared someday in your interactions with girls: how you think about girls, talk to girls, treat girls, and pursue girls.
Tony Reinke shares some helpful advice from the Longform podcast.
Perhaps the most helpful result of this Trinity kerfuffle is two-fold: (1) professors are being forced to tighten up their language about the Trinity, with several scholars doubling back or modifying their positions; and (2) students are being forced to make sure they care about the nuances that some professors have overlooked. Theology students should be encouraged that this debate happened in public and right in front of them, because it can teach them (us!) a few good lessons.
Joe Carter provides a helpful write-up on why this issue matters.
It’s unlikely that this attack, just the latest in an unending stream of tragedy to envelop the Iraqi capital, will generate the same panic in the West as the earlier two incidents. For years now, we have become almost numb to the violence in Baghdad: Deadly car bombings there conjure up no hashtags, no Facebook profile pictures with the Iraqi flag, and no Western newspaper front pages of the victims’ names and life stories, and they attract only muted global sympathy.