Let a Little Lent into Your Advent

David Mathis
Let a Little Lent into Your Advent

“What Child Is This?” is no chart-topper among the children. The minor keys and slower pace make it less engaging to little ears. It’s hard to compete with the brightness, cadence, and pep of “Jingle Bells” and “Joy to the World.”

And that repeated rhetorical question is puzzling to a child’s undeveloped sense of artistry. *“What child is this?” It’s Jesus, of course. Why do we keep asking that when we all know the answer?*

Nails, Spear Shall Pierce Him Through

But many of... Continue Reading

What Will You Say to Jesus?

Jonathan Parnell
What Will You Say to Jesus?

One day we will stand before Jesus.

If we could see through the clutter of our lives now, if we could envision that day when everything is said and done, it’s clear that the enduring mission in and under and beyond every detail of our lives should be about pleasing him. What does he think?

What will he say?

We don’t know the exact words Jesus will speak to us on that Day, though the Bible gives us some ideas (Matthew 25:23). Whatever it is, we can be sure it will be glorious and... Continue Reading

‘The Calvinist’: Verse, Video, Vision for All of Life

John Piper

May I invite you into the life of a Calvinist? It’s probably not what you think. The sovereign God of the Bible is full of surprises. Sermons and essays are good. But sometimes only poems will do. We grope for special words and special forms to catch the radiance of God.

I wrote this poem called “The Calvinist” to capture a glimpse of God’s sovereign intersection with the life of a sinful man. There is no part of life where the greatness of God does not... Continue Reading

No One Ever Said It Would Be This Hard

Jon Bloom
No One Ever Said It Would Be This Hard

Nobody said it was easy;
No one ever said it would be this hard. (Coldplay, “The Scientist”)

O Christian Hedonism! That ancient, beautiful, biblical truth that our treasure is what most captures our heart (Matthew 6:21), that what measures our treasure is our pleasure, that if God is our “exceeding joy” (Psalm 43:4) then God’s pursuit of glory and our pursuit of happiness are one wonderful, wild pursuit! Because God is actually most glorified in us when we are most ... Continue Reading

Five Things to Teach Your Children This Christmas

Christina Fox
Five Things to Teach Your Children This Christmas

“Mom, I need to add something to my Christmas wish list.”

It’s that time of year again. The stores are adorned with all things red and green. Mailboxes and inboxes are filled with ads, sales, and catalogs. Prettily wrapped packages are at the forefront of nearly everyone’s minds — especially kids’.

Christmas provides a wonderful opportunity to pour the truths of the gospel into the hearts of our children. It’s an ideal time to show them the greatest gift they... Continue Reading

Until the Son of God Appeared

Jonathan Parnell
Until the Son of God Appeared

Finally, the son was born. Generation after generation had anticipated his birth and the world desperately needed him. Desperately.

Each day was a gloomy cloud of night. The darkness of death’s shadow filled the earth. Strife and quarrels multiplied without hindrance. The hearts of all mankind only conceived evil. In fact, “every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Genesis 6:5). It actually was so bad that the detoxification of wickedness meant... Continue Reading

My Joy and God’s Holiness: Friends or Foes?

Tony Reinke
My Joy and God’s Holiness: Friends or Foes?

Happiness and holiness are inseparable. True holiness is unattainable without true happiness. Happiness is part of holiness — even the essence of holiness.

But there’s an even deeper connection between our happiness and holiness, and it’s rooted in God’s holy character.

Holy, Holy, Holy!

Many times, a sermon on the holiness of God will start with Isaiah 6:1–5, with a dramatic recounting of Isaiah, the priest, entering the temple in the presence of God’s flowing... Continue Reading

The Most Important Doctrine You’ve Never Heard Of?

David Mathis

Union with Christ. We couldn’t be any more excited about taking up this theme at our upcoming conference for pastors.

Whether this doctrine is an old friend or one you haven’t heard much about, it will be greatly enriching to give three days to basking in the theology and everyday implications with Michael Horton, Sinclair Ferguson, and John Piper. (Full schedule below.)

Whether or not it’s a live option for you to join us, we invite you into the 2-minute... Continue Reading

When Black Friday Becomes a Mission

Jon Bloom
When Black Friday Becomes a Mission

With the Christmas season and all its commercial blitz and glitz upon us (seen especially on Black Friday), let’s lay aside the grousing and see the grace. No throwing wet blankets over Christmas.

May Christmas always blaze healthy and strong in the fireplace of our Decembers, radiating golden light and drawing loved ones and strangers together around its warmth to share a cup of joyful wonder.

And please, let us lay aside fruitless and, frankly, irrelevant debates about... Continue Reading

Thanksgiving, Thanksfeeling, and the Glory of God

John Piper
Thanksgiving, Thanksfeeling, and the Glory of God

Now and then, it needs to be said that not all thanksgiving is thanksfeeling. We can make ourselves (or our children) say, “Thank you,” whether we feel it or not. But it’s not a good habit, especially in relation to God.

Jesus warns against “vain” worship. “This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me” (Matthew 15:8–9). Thanksgiving without thanksfeeling is empty. It does not count with God.

An Act of the... Continue Reading