God Has Exalted His Name and Word

Jon Bloom

"You have exalted above all things your name and your word." (Ps. 138:2)

In the beginning was the Word
And the Word was with God and the Word was God
And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory,
Glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Though he was in the form of God
He did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,
But made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant,
Being born in the likeness of men.... Continue Reading

Fear Not

Jon Bloom
Fear Not

And the angel said to them, ‘Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people' (Luke 2:10).

The Bethlehem shepherds were afraid of the holy angel. That’s understandable. Holy glory naturally strikes terror into the heart of sinful people.

But the angel told them they did not have to fear. He was bringing them good news! Christ the Lord, their Savior, had been born in the city of his father, David. And this Savior would bring peace among those with whom God was... Continue Reading

An Open Letter to Clarence the Angel (from the Film It’s a Wonderful Life)

Michael Johnson
An Open Letter to Clarence the Angel (from the Film <em>It’s a Wonderful Life</em>)

Dear Clarence,

At the outset, please forgive me if this letter seems a bit disjointed. I’ve never written an angel before, so I’m a bit nervous!

What’s the occasion of this, my very first “Angel” letter? I realize it’s a tad tardy, but it’s regarding the movie that made you famous: Frank Capra’s iconic film It’s a Wonderful Life.

I’ve watched it for nearly every year I’ve been alive, and have even passed the tradition on to my growing... Continue Reading

Here's What's Often Missing When We Speak of the Final Judgment As Being According to Works

Matt Perman

I agree that the final judgment is according to works. We are justified—made right with God and given a title to heaven—by faith alone apart from works. This faith, though,always and necessarilyleads to good works, such that at the final judgment works can be necessary asevidencethat wehave already beenaccepted by God. So works are necessary as evidence, not basis.

One analogy may be going to a concert. When you are... Continue Reading

Piper Poem on Suffering

Josh Etter

What is God’s sovereign grace?

Not grace to bar what is not bliss
Nor flight from all distress but this:
The grace that orders our trouble and pain
And then, in the darkness, is there to sustain.

This poem was taken from the sermon by John Piper, “Sustained by Sovereign Grace—Forever”.

When Preaching Becomes Plagiarism

Tyler Kenney

When has a preacher crossed the line into plagiarism in his sermon?

Matt Perman, senior director of strategy at DG, has posted his response today at The Gospel Coalition Blog. Itfollows in a series on plagiarism that began earlier this week, which also includes posts byDon Carson, Sandy Willson,Tim Keller,Glenn Lucke and Collin Hansen (the last two forthcoming; read Hansen's introductionto the series).

After explaining his answer, Matt gives this encouraging takeaway:

Just be... Continue Reading

We Are Not So Reasonable

Jon Bloom
We Are Not So Reasonable

And they abandoned the Lord, the God of their fathers…[and] went after other gods, from among the gods of the peoples who were around them. (Judges 2:12)

The ancient Israelites repeatedly turned to the idols of the surrounding nations despite God’s repeated warnings. What in the world was so compelling about Baal, Dagon, Ashtoreth, Chemosh, and Molech?

Answer: the world around them worshiped them. The nations surrounding Israel had fruitful harvests and won wars. They grew wealthy,... Continue Reading

What Is a Peacemaker?

Dustin S.

Our master, Jesus the Messiah, said, “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.” Christians are called to be peacemakers. So how are we doing? Is this what we are known for? Does this describe you?

Imagine you were to tell your family that you wanted to be a peacemaker. Would they first think of the church or the UN? “Peacemaker” ought to be synonymous with Christian, especially in light of the frequent New Testament commands to be at peace with others (i. e.... Continue Reading

A Good Way to Think of the Love of Christ

Tyler Kenney
A Good Way to Think of the Love of Christ

Jonathan Edwards explains how romantic love helps us understand Jesus' feelings towards the church (Miscellanies #189, spacing added):

We see how great love the human nature is capable of, not only to God but fellow creatures. How greatly are we inclined to the other sex! Nor doth an exalted and fervent love to God hinder this, but only refines and purifies it.

God has created the human nature to love fellow creatures, which he wisely has principally turned to the... Continue Reading

Are You More Blessed Than the Virgin Mary?

Jonathan Parnell
Are You More Blessed Than the Virgin Mary?

In the sermon descriptively entitled,

“That Hearing and Keeping the Word of God Renders a Person More Blessed Than Any Other Privilege That Ever God Bestowed on Any of the Children of Men,”

Jonathan Edwards writes:

The hearing and keeping the word of God brings the happiness of a spiritual union and communion with God.

‘Tis a greater blessedness to have spiritual communion with God and to have a saving intercourse with him by the instances of his Spirit and by the... Continue Reading