God’s Sovereignty, Our Suffering (Bridges)

When the dark valleys in life come, this book will help you keep your eyes on the Lord and strengthen your trust in his Word.

This is one of the better books I’ve read on suffering and the sovereignty of God: Is God Really in Control by Jerry Bridges. This book is outstanding because it is very biblical, pastoral, and practical. You won’t find a detailed philosophical discussion of theodicy in these pages, but you will find hope, comfort, and encouragement in the sovereignty of God’s love in Christ. As always, Bridges writes in a straightforward manner that most Christians can understand. You can give this book to a 60-year-old Christian going through a trial or a newly married husband and wife grieving over a miscarriage. This is truly a book for the church.

Why Papa of The Shack is Not Aslan of Narnia

Aslan faithfully represents Christ without claiming to be him; Papa claims to be God without accurately resembling him.

Here, then, is a key difference between Narnia and The Shack. Aslan is a character from a different world and a different system of beliefs who has some similarities to God the Son. The Shack presents a character in this world who claims to be God the Son. It also presents characters in this world who claim to be God the Father and God the Holy Spirit. To look at Aslan on the silver screen is to see a character who is like Jesus in some key ways; to look at Papa or Sarayu on the silver screen is to see characters who claim “I am God the Father” and “I am God the Holy Spirit.” (Let me say this clearly: My concern with portraying God the Father as Papa and God the Spirit as Sarayu has nothing to do with their race or gender, or even their humanity. The concern is portraying God as anything at all.)

Is Genesis History? The Scientists say “Yes”

Over 143,000 people attended the premier showing of “Is Genesis History” on February 23rd (largest grossing movie of the day); encore presentations will be shown March 2 and March 7.

The production is high quality and moves quickly. Seven or eight top scientists in various disciplines are interviewed and provide expert testimony. This was genuinely informative to me. If you’re a pastor like me who may not be strong in scientific particulars, it is refreshing to have such strong reinforcement from well-credentialed and knowledgeable professionals.... Continue Reading

Ye Of Brittle Faith

Why all the hysteria among atheist elites over this little book?

After the publication of the book, Religion News Service tweeted this misleading headline: “A controversial new book claims a dying Christopher Hitchens accepted God.” RNS subsequently retracted the headline, but it was too late. Christopher Hitchens’s agent, Steve Wasserman, vociferously denounced the book.   On December 15, 2011, Christopher Hitchens died of esophageal cancer. Some... Continue Reading

Like Scales and Jazz: How to Preach Christ from Psalms

How should contemporary Christ followers and Christian pastors continue walking the Emmaus Road, seeing and preaching Christ throughout the Psalms?

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Jesus came as heir not only of David’s throne but also of David’s prayers—from his distress to his deliverance, from his laments to his praises. Since God’s people in every generation will walk the same path—cross before crown—Christian pastors are wise to preach the Psalms in all... Continue Reading

Christian Women And Erotica: The Silent Struggle You Cannot See

What are we wanting so much we’re willing to push God’s word away in order to get it?

“Our hearts are the biggest factor though. As the Reformer John Calvin reminded us, they are an idol-making factory. The place where we time and again decide that we want a certain experience, a certain kind of relationship, a certain kind of security, a certain kind of pleasure—and want those things more than we want... Continue Reading

Regret or Repentance? (Poirier)

The Apostle talks about the difference between regret (worldly sorrow) and repentance (godly sorrow) in 2 Corinthians 7:9-10.

"Finally, regret and repentance differ with respect to others and oneself. Regret or worldly sorrow leads either to self-righteousness or self-condemnation. When we beat ourselves up, we also beat others up. We resent others when they wrong us, and we are quick to take offense and point out their faults. Repentance, on the other hand, leads to Christ’s righteousness. We rejoice that we are not condemned. WE glory in Christ’s perfect obedience and love, and soon, like Christ, we too mourn over the sins of others and seek to help them be reconciled to God (Ps. 51:12-13)."

The ‘Mother of the Books’: A Case Study of the Consequences of a Seminal Muslim Idiom Translation

The study uses David Owen’s Sirat al-Masih to demonstrate that ‘ideas have consequences’ that extend far beyond the reach of the original document.

Under the umbrella of pragmatism, Owen spoke about using “Islamic style,” but as this study demonstrates, it actually morphed into Islamic thought forms and into a promotion of an Islamic worldview. It appears that he has served the Islamic agenda more than a Christian one…. The case study calls for a higher level of accountability... Continue Reading

The Most Important Reformer You’ve Never Heard Of

Today, the name Peter Martyr Vermigli, highly esteemed during the Reformation, rings very few bells.

Vermigli is the ideal Reformer to introduce to children on the anniversary of the Reformation, because he lived in several countries of Europe, leaving an impact on the continent as a whole. It has often been said that the pivotal religious movements of the sixteenth century are best described as Reformations rather than the Reformation. The rediscovery of the biblical sources and particularly of the gospel and the desire to return to the purity of biblical teachings were common denominators, but each country had, in some ways, a different and distinct Reformation. Vermigli participated in many of them.

Book Review: ‘The Productivity Project’

A key takeaway from Bailey is his discovery of the relationship between our time, energy, and attention

“If you want to become more productive, managing your time should take a backseat to how you manage your energy and attention.” Some of the common conclusions were vindicated in his study. We need to eat properly, get plenty of rest, not waste time doing things that don’t matter, and make sure we are doing the... Continue Reading