4 Posts Worth Reading

As a blogger, I find myself reading lots of other blogs.  I do this not mainly to see what other people are writing about, but to gain more for my soul because, as the current scene is, there are so many good blogs to read daily.  Over the past few weeks Desiring God posted 4 articles on their blog that are worth your attention.  Here are blurbs below of each, with links to take you to each one.  Glean much from these, you’ll greatly benefit.

Vintage Worship: by Matt Boswell

I love old hymns. I keep a stack of hymnals on my nightstand, and have an ever-growing collection in my library. I cut my teeth on Charles Wesley and John Rippon. I hope to write academically on the pastoral theology of hymns. I even have a dog named Watts.

While I certainly don’t think that historic hymns are the only thing we should sing in corporate worship, I am concerned that omitting older hymns in our gatherings silences the rich voices of church history. Some churches seem uninterested in any song that is more than two years old, much less two hundred years. Yes, the church will continue to write and sing new songs (Psalm 96:1), but it is also good and helpful for us to sing old songs.  (to read the rest click here)

10 Unforgettable Lessons on Fatherhood: by Ray Ortlund

In public, my dad was one of the great pastors of his generation. He served most notably for twenty fruitful years at Lake Avenue Congregational Church in Pasadena, where John and Noel Piper worshiped during their Fuller Seminary days. Dad and John were dear friends.

In private, my dad was the same man. There was only one Ray Ortlund, Sr. — an authentic Christian man. The distance between what I saw in the New Testament and what I saw in my dad was slight. He was the most Christlike man I’ve ever known, the kind of man, the kind of father, I long to be.

In no particular order, here are ten lessons on fatherhood I learned from watching him, each lesson living on in my life from memories of his care for me.  (to read the rest click here)

Is Christian Ministry Rehab or Rescue? by John Piper

Some great evangelists and missionaries have viewed their ministry as rescuing people from the sinking ship of the world. The boat is going down and our job is to save as many as we can from going down with it. “The world is passing away, but whoever does the will of God abides forever” (1 John 2:17).

The problem with this picture is not exactly what some critics think it is.

Some point out that the boat is not going down. The earth is the Lord’s. And the heavens are his, too. He will make all things new (Revelation 21:5). So, they say, the idea that Christian ministry is a rescue operation is ill-conceived. Life on the boat, and the boat itself, are going to be totally refurbished someday. What needs to happen now is to get to work, and make progress on that refurbishing.

There is truth in both these pictures of ministry. It’s true that the ship of the world will never sink and become uninhabitable. The new earth is this old earth renewed. But every person on this ship dies. And when they die they are thrown overboard.

Now, if they have a faith-in-Jesus life jacket when they die and go overboard, Jesus comes along and picks them up in his eternal-life salvation boat. “Blessed are the dead who die in the Lord” (Revelation 14:13).

But if they don’t have the faith-in-Jesus life jacket, then they sink and perish. “It is appointed for man to die once, and after that comes judgment” (Hebrews 9:27). So the urgency is not that the boat is sinking, but that all the passengers are dying.  (to read the rest click here)

Tattoos for the Soul: by Joe Thorn

For twenty years, I have considered myself a “confessional Christian.” That means I subscribe to a historic confession of faith that I believe beautifully and accurately summarizes the Christian faith. This doesn’t surprise people who know me. I tend to wear my convictions on my sleeve. Literally. The tattoos that cover my chest and arms speak to the faith I hold dear. The tattoo on my hand reads “1689” for the 1689 Baptist Confession of Faith.

Because I love God, I love his word. And because I love God and his word, I love theology. And because I love theology, I love confessions of faith. To know God is to believe who he has revealed himself to be in Christ, to rest in his grace, and to obey him in faith. In all of this, we are dependent on the Holy Scripture, and are compelled to affirm and articulate the truths revealed therein. This is where confessions of faith play a vital role in the spiritual health of the Christian and the local church.  (to read the rest click here)

Introducing “A Short Saying” Blog

In the Blogosphere there is a lot of junk, man-centered blogs which have nothing but mumbo jumbo that barely has anything to do with the Bible. But there is a lot of really good, God-centered, stout blogs out there as well. When I come across such blogs I want you to know about such glorious ness. Taylor Rollo, a kind and close friend of mine has such a blog, called “A Short Saying.” Here is his aim:

“How much better to get wisdom than gold, to choose understanding rather than silver!” ~ Proverbs 16:16. ”

A short saying often contains much wisdom.” ~ Sophocles

Indeed, wisdom is more valuable than any earthly possession and much wisdom can be found in few words. With this blog I endeavor to pass on not my wisdom, since it would only take one post and a short one at that, but the wisdom of others as I discover it. I will often add comments to the quote that I post and I invite comments from others so that we might unpack the wisdom in these “short sayings.”

I believe that wisdom and truth can be found in many places so the quotes I post will come from many resources. However, I also believe that wisdom and truth must always be evaluated with respect to the ultimate guide for wisdom and truth, God’s Word, so I will endeavor to comment in such a fashion.

I cannot recommend Taylor’s blog enough, I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. Click here to get to it.

Handpicked Sermons of the Reformed Kind

Every now and then you come across a blog in the ever growing blogosphere that grabs hold of you in a deep way, leaving you fulfilled on one hand and wanting more on the other. When I find a blog like this I feel eager to let you know about it, so guess what? I found one! Sermonize Usis its name. Far from being the shallow semi-Bible related blog that most christian blogs are, Sermonize Us is robustly putting forth the most solid sermons being preached today. As you probably could have guessed it is a reformed blog, meaning it only produces and points us to sermons which make much of God while decreasing man. The creator and curator of the blog, Mike Worell, says this is why he made the blog to begin with:

Sermonize Us is a podcast created to share sermons. It was sort of started out of selfish reasons: I love good sermons and wanted to hear more. There’s a great group of guys at the church I attend in Michigan (Mt Morris Community Church) that all listen to quite a few sermons. Not every sermon you hear is outstanding – but the ones that are you want to share. Sermonize Us was created to share those sermons. The site allows you to post a link to a sermon, and after that sermon is reviewed it gets posted and added to the podcast. It’s a pretty small group of trusted guys posting reformed sermons at this point. The audio is also shared on Facebook, and makes for a great way to add redeeming audio links to your feed

Last week Mike and I were chatting about some of my favorite sermons and he asked me to write three of down for his blog, and it took me two weeks to get them nailed down! You can go there to see what three sermons I chose, but moreso, go there to explore the wealth of solid Biblical material on this website. You’ll be glad you did, I always am.

Thank you Mike, for spreading the glory of God to the ends of the blogosphere! May many find and follow the glory of God through your endeavor.