Blog Posts on Life of the Mind

The End of Books

Tony Reinke and Jon Bloom

Why is reading so important to Christianity?

How is the Internet changing the way we read?

How can we become better readers?

These questions, and other critical topics about literacy, were addressed by Desiring God’s own Tony Reinke in an interview with Cees-Jan Smits today in the newspaper Reformatorisch Dagblad (Dutch).

Tony is the author of Lit! A Christian Guide to Reading Books, or as it’s known in the…

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The Blessing and Challenge of Graduation

Alex Chediak

Choose this day whom you will serve. (Joshua 24:15)

High school graduation is a rite of passage unlike any other. You move from being treated like a child (legally) to being counted an adult, both in society and in any academic setting you might enter. Colleges aren’t even allowed to discuss your grades with your parents apart from your consent. Childhood is over. Adulthood beckons. How should you respond to…

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Right Thinking Is for Deep Feeling

David Mathis

Doctrine is for the sake of delight. Christian theology does not exist for its own sake, but for our desiring and enjoying Christ.

Simply put, the mind is meant to serve the heart. Thinking serves feeling. God gave us the ability to learn and reason, so that we might admire and treasure him above anything else. Right thinking is for deep feeling.

A Message for Every Human

Recently, John Piper…

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Who Is P.G. Wodehouse, and Why Should It Matter to Us?

Douglas Wilson

On one level, reading the works of P.G. Wodehouse provides its own justification — provided you are looking to justify the reading of light comedy at the beach. But who actually needs to justify that kind of thing? To consume a literary soufflé brings its own reward, and no heavy, sick feeling afterwards. Tangled plots, no sex or violence, memorable characters, hilarious dialogue . . . what could be better?…

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Preparing for the Future in the Age of Facebook

Alex Chediak

The regular use of our minds — thinking, reading, studying, analyzing — is a necessary means to loving God in this world. God gave us a Book, and he ordained that insight into its message be given by means of focused mental effort (2 Timothy 2:7; Ephesians 3:4; Acts 17:11–12) combined with supernatural illumination (2 Corinthians 4:4–6; 1 Peter 1:23). We should become attentive readers even if only to…

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Writing Like Cicero for the Sake of the Soul

John Piper

Marilynne Robinson, whose novels Gilead and Home have moved many of us deeply, has just published a new collection of Essays titled When I Was a Child I Read Books.

Here’s a caution. Her fiction is more easily understood than her nonfiction. She admits, “My style is considerably more indebted to Cicero than to Hemingway” (87). That means her sentences sound like translations of good Latin. In other words,…

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New Publications Relating to C. S. Lewis

John Piper

Joel Heck, Professor of Theology at Concordia University, Texas, has served us again by publishing rare materials relating to C. S. Lewis. In 2008 he published The Personal Heresy: A Controversy. And now he has published the Socratic Digest (Concordia University Press, 2012), a digest of the biannual publication of the meetings of the Socratic Club at Oxford from 1943 to 1952. Lewis was a regular part of this…

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Learning from Myself Forty Years Later: Thoughts on the Republication of My Doctoral Dissertation

John Piper

Crossway just republished my 1974 doctoral dissertation from the University of Munich. In re-reading parts of Love Your Enemies, I am struck at how solidifying those early days were.

For example, a significant focus of the dissertation was on the nature of motivation for loving our enemies and the role of God’s Spirit in bringing about enemy-love. In one section I asked, If we are born again by the…

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15 Tips on Blogging from John Newton

Tony Reinke

John Newton, the slave-trade ship captain turned pastor and hymn-writer, wasn't exactly a blogger. Many of his writings, however, fit in the category of we today would call blogging. He wrote mostly letters — small, topically oriented and experience-based pieces — and he became increasingly aware those letters would be published for a wider audience. When you pick up a copy of his published letters and begin reading, they remind…

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12 Short Books Worth Reading

Jonathan Parnell

In one of my daughters' favorite books Dr. Seuss tells us, "The more you read, the more things you will know."

True. Reading is thinking is learning — and there are "mountains of treasures waiting to be mined." But this doesn't mean the books we read have to be long. As Pastor John explains,

What I have learned from [years] of serious reading is this. It is sentences that change

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