Faithful Presence Amid "Continuous Partial Attention," Part 2

Michael Johnson

In last week's post, we briefly discussed James Davison Hunter's observation (from his book To Change the World) that our increasingly omnipresent "fragmentation of consciousness" poses significant challenges to foster a distinctly Christian faithful presence in our modern world, as it "cultivates a kind of absence in the experience of 'being elsewhere'".

If Hunter's assessment is correct, what (if anything) should we do? How will we resist the... Continue Reading

You're Fooling Yourself

Paul Tripp
You're Fooling Yourself

There's loads of knowledge to be found, but wisdom is a rare commodity. Why? Because wisdom is one of sin's first casualties. It's hard to admit, but true none the less: sin reduces all of us to fools. And the fact is that no one is more victimized by your foolishness than you are.

You see the empirical evidence of the foolishness of sin on almost every page of Scripture. For example, you see foolishness in full operation in the tragic story of David and Bathsheba. This is why David... Continue Reading

Satan's Schemes Always Backfire in the End

Tyler Kenney
Satan's Schemes Always Backfire in the End

According to Jonathan Edwards, Satan's desire to destroy man in the garden grew out of envy. His haughtiness and pride were insulted to see earthborn creatures receiving such honor while he, a native of heaven with such natural strength and knowledge, was cast down and dishonored. Thus, in this jealousy, Satan deceived Eve to bring an end to the insult.

Edwards paints the scene, and then he exposes the irony:

And oh, how may we conclude Satan triumphed when he had... Continue Reading

Two More Responses to Claims of Contradiction

Tyler Kenney

On Friday we pointed to Justin Holcomb's response to Project Reason andFast Company's mutual misrepresentation of the Bible. Since that post, a couple other notable responses have been issued as well.

While Holcomb gives a solid, high-level answer to the "contradictions in Scripture" claim, Doug Wilson's response serves readers by getting nitty-gritty with a sampling of supposedly contradictory verses and showing how, in context, they aren't antithetical after... Continue Reading

Why Sound Doctrine Leads to Effective Action for Good

Matt Perman
Why Sound Doctrine Leads to Effective Action for Good

I talked this morning at our Friday morning chapel on why sound doctrine grounds and leads to effective action for good. I asked six questions in my message:

First, does the Bible teach this—that is, does the Bible teach that doctrine grounds and leads to diligent and zealous practical action for good? Second, if so, why does sound doctrine lead to effective action? Third, is doctrine alone enough? Fourth, what are some historical examples of this? And... Continue Reading

The History of Veterans Day

Tyler Kenney

Today in the United States we celebrate the great and many sacrifices our war veterans have made over the years in service to our nation. (Two years ago, John Piper wrote of his gratitude for such veterans in his post "Thankful They Embraced the Risk.")

The History Channel recently created this short video to tell the story of when and why November 11th became the day for remembering our veterans, and what changes the holiday has seen since that time:

Faithful Presence Amid "Continuous Partial Attention"

Michael Johnson

At this very moment, you’re multi-tasking:

  1. you’re likely at work, home, or at a “third space”;
  2. have multiple windows open on your screen;
  3. are listening to music;
  4. are reading another blog post;
  5. are talking to/thinking about someone;
  6. reading or writing an e-mail;
  7. are blinking;
  8. have a pulse.

Okay, scratch the last two. (And lest you surmise I suffer from the “I’m okay, you’re not okay” malady, ironically I’m multi-tasking even as I compose this blog post.)

So let’s... Continue Reading

Thoughts on Evangelical Neglect of the Old Testament

Tyler Kenney

It has been my experience, in talking with fellow evangelicals, that many of us are quick to equate the Old Testament to mean little more than what the Pharisees thought it meant in Jesus’ day. It is a book of Jewish religion, and if there is any Christian doctrine in its pages, it is veiled to the reader who hasn’t first become acquainted with the New Testament.

Of course, regardless of whether we are ethnically Jewish or Gentile, we have to first admit... Continue Reading

Why God Makes Understanding Difficult

Tyler Kenney
Why God Makes Understanding Difficult

Jonathan Edwards, from Miscellanies #139:

I am convinced that there are many things in religion and the Scriptures that are made difficult on purpose to try men, and to exercise their faith and scrutiny, and to hinder the proud and self-sufficient.

John Piper addresses this same issue, speaking particularly about difficulties we encounter in Scripture, in his sermon, "Why God Inspired Hard Texts." He says God has given us hard texts to prompt at least four things, which... Continue Reading

Drudgery Vs. Christianity

Mark Priestap

Recently I expressed some frustration to my pastor about how I am not "applying the gospel to my children." So this past Sunday he lovingly took me aside to make sure I wasn’t legalistically trying to "apply the gospel" in a slavish, duty-bound way.

It's easy to allow slavish obedience to muddy the gospel, isn't it? We discover something beautiful about Christ and the gospel, but then after some time, instead of it remaining transforming good news that overflows in worship and good... Continue Reading