Monthly Archives: June 2011

High Stakes: A Review by Rata on Bell & Hell

Tiberius Rata, Professor of Old Testament Studies at Grace Theological Seminary recently published a review of Rob Bell’s book Love Wins, for the webzine, Preaching Online. You can read his insightful review here.

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Spiritual Pride

“Spiritual pride is the main door by which the devil comes into the hearts of those who are zealous for the advancement of Christianity.  It is the chief inlet of smoke from the bottomless pit, to darken the mind and mislead the judgment.  It is the main source of all the mischief the devil introduces, to clog and hinder a work of God.

Spiritual pride tends to speak of other persons’ sins with bitterness or with laughter and levity and an air of contempt.  But pure Christian humility rather tends either to be silent about these problems or to speak of them with grief and pity.  Spiritual pride is very apt to suspect others, but a humble Christian is most guarded about himself.  He is as suspicious of nothing in the world as he is of his own heart.  The proud person is apt to find fault with other believers, that they are low in grace, and to be much in observing how cold and dead they are and to be quick to note their deficiencies.  But the humble Christian has so much to do at home and sees so much evil in his own heart and is so concerned about it, that he is not apt to be very busy with other hearts.  He is apt to esteem others better than himself.”

Jonathan Edwards, Works (Edinburgh, 1979), I:398-400. Style updated.

HT: Ray Ortlund, Jr.

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Filed under Humility, Jonathan Edwards, Sanctification

Galatians: Sermons from Tom Schreiner

Thomas Schreiner recently published a commentary on the book of Galatians, and while writing he preached through Galatians (2007).

Tony Reinke has made these available for free download from his website “Miscellanies”: Schreiner on Galatians:

  1. The Gospel: Our Life (1:1–9)
  2. The Supernatural Gospel (1:10–24)
  3. The Freedom Of The Gospel (2:1–10)
  4. Public Church Discipline (2:11–14)
  5. Faith In Christ (2:15–21)
  6. Don’t Be Foolish (3:1)
  7. Faith From First To Last (3:1–9)
  8. Not By Law (3:10–14)
  9. Blessed With Abraham (3:10–14)
  10. Promise, Not Law! (3:15–20)
  11. The Role Of The Law (3:21–26)
  12. Freedom From Ourselves (4:1–11)
  13. Words For A Friend (4:12–20)
  14. Citizens Of The Free City (4:21–5:1)
  15. Faith Alone (5:2–6)
  16. Comfort In Trouble (5:7–12)
  17. True Freedom (5:13–18)
  18. Life In The Flesh And Life In The Spirit (5:19–26)
  19. Bearing Burdens And Examining Your Work (6:1–5)
  20. Keep Sowing To The End (6:6–10)
  21. Our Last Time (6:11–18)

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Filed under Galatians, Sermons

Gospel Faithfulness through Time Management

“Seven Thoughts on Time Management” by Doug Wilson

Here’s the outline of the article: (You can find the full article here.)

  1. The point is fruitfulness, not efficiency.
  2. Build a fence around your life, and keep the fence tended.
  3. Perfectionism paralyzes.
  4. Fill in the corners.
  5. Plod. Keep at it.
  6. Take in more than you give out.
  7. Use and reuse. State and restate. Learn and relearn.
Here’s the outline of the article (36pgs.):
  1. Busyness?
  2. Confessions of a Busy Procrastinator
  3. The Procrastinator Within
  4. Just Do It
  5. In All Thy Ways
  6. The Sluggard
  7. Time Redeemed
  8. Time Well-Spent
  9. Roles, Goals, & Scheduling
  10. Roles (Part 1 & 2)
  11. Goals (Parts 1-4)
  12. Scheduling the Unexpected
  13. Self-Sufficient
  14. The “To Do” Lists Are Never Done
You can find the entire article here.

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Covenantal Love: Sustaining Love in Marriage

Thoughts from John Piper, D.A. Carson, and Tim Keller on the covenant of marriage and how to sustain such love:

“What sustains the marital bond and affections over the long haul? Three men with a combined 116 years of marriage reflect on what they’ve learned from God’s Word and others along with their experience.

“Don Carson, Tim Keller, and John Piper offer insight on falling in love again and again and the ground of covenant in which the flower of love grows. In marriage, man and woman change but their promise does not, sustained by the God who enacted his covenant between Christ and the church.”

HT: Justin Taylor

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The Relevance of the Gospel

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What Does Your Bank Account Reveal?

What Does Your Bank Account Reveal About Your Treasures?

Guest post by Nathan Anderson

Sharply dressed and perfumed with an air of condescension, she voiced her impatience by repeatedly looking at her watch and complaining about her last banking experience. Her current transaction, involving nearly $10,000 in cash, was going to take more time than she probably wanted to wait. A bank teller doesn’t have quick access to that kind of substantial cash, especially when she demanded it all in one hundred dollar bills.

I had already accessed her account on my computer, both to validate her identity and to verify she could withdraw the cash. After she left I glanced through her account, again, and immediately I knew how she spent her money. She fed her appetites with purchases from luxury retailers.

What distinguished her from the majority of my customers was the amount of money to which she had access. But in another way she was just as common as every other customer I serve throughout the day. Each customer’s account details reveal what he or she values.

Money has no real intrinsic value. It costs pennies for the Federal Government to print paper currency. You can’t wear it, eat it, and could barely start a fire with it if you were cold. A miser could hoard all the money in the world, but would relinquish it all at his death. But money is extremely valuable in another way.  It allows you to gaze into the value system and worldview of its possessor.

One customer loves video games; his account reveals a multitude of charges to an online video gaming site. Another rarely cooks at home; almost every day a charge posts from at least one restaurant and sometimes two. Another customer values travel. You can see his charges from various vacation spots. One family has two substantial car loans, that, combined with their mortgage, seems to outpace their income. They value a façade of wealth.

As Christians, we boldly assert our values: generosity, world missions, feeding the poor, and fighting for justice. And rightly we claim these ideals near the heart of God. But does your bank account support your voiced ideals? Could your local bank teller deduce you were generous and supported world missions? Do your canceled checks reveal your support of the unborn and other issues of justice? Sometimes Christians’ claims are incongruent with their actions. Stop lying to yourself. Your teller knows the truth.

What do you value? What in life is important to you? Wait, don’t tell me. Let me look up your account.

HT: Gospel Growth at CCC

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Jesus Is Better…

Tim Keller: Jesus is Better

Thanks Marc Goodwin for the audio link–I had read the sermon but not listened to it.

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