Posts Tagged ‘Resources’

Gospel-Centered Reader

This looks like a great list by Timmy Brister:  Gospel-Centered Reader
I’d  love to make my way through this list.  (HT:  JT)

More Hymn Goodness

Here’s another entry into the older hymns, new tunes camp – (a camp I absolutely love and found incredibly valuable to the church). You can download this album for free for a limited time (another thing I absolutely love).  A brief first listen is very positive – the songs have a little bit of an (electric) edge to them – this would be in contrast to Indelible Grace/Red Mountain Church style.

From the website:

Page CXVI is a project started with the idea of making hymns accessible and known again.They are some of the richest, most meaningful, and moving pieces of music ever written.

Here are the hymns included on this album:

Come Thou Fount
In Christ Alone (actually a new hymn and one of my favorites; new hymns are also needed in the church)
My Jesus I Love Thee
When I Survey The Wondrous Cross
Nothing But the Blood
Solid Rock
Joy

(HT: Between Two Worlds)

February Books

Here are the books that I completed reading in February.  These aren’t review exactly…more like my impressions:

  • The Gospel & Personal Evangelism by Mark Dever – This is one of the best books on evangelism that I have read (not that I have read a ton).  It is a relatively small book but it is packed with great thoughts and encouragement.  This is a book that I want to think about getting into the hands of other Christians (maybe a book of the quarter).  Here are the chapter titles (with author’s emphasis):
    • Why Don’t We Evangelize?
    • What Is the Gospel?
    • Who Should Evangelize?
    • How Should We Evangelize?
    • What Isn’t Evangelism?
    • What Should We Do After We Evangelize?
    • Why Should We Evangelize?
  • Soul Circus by George Pelecanos:  I picked this book up cheap at B & N after reading a brief review of a more recent Pelecanos novel.  This novel takes place in the inner-city of DC with an investigator/private eye as the main character.  I was not particularly moved by this book – it kept my attention, but there was nothing that really grabbed me.  In addition, due to the context of the book, it was fairly gritty and raw in some places.  Based on this one book, I am not sure I would read any others by Pelecanos.
  • The Prodigal God by Timothy Keller:  Keller wrote one of my favorite books last year (The Reason for God) and this one was published late last year.  I think this is a very important book for American Christianity to read and consider.  Many people think they have understood the heart of Christianity, but have really only experienced a poor facisimile.  So, with this book, using the story of the prodigal son (or Parable of Two Lost Sons) presents the gospel of Jesus Christ to the irreligious (the younger son) and the religious/moralist (the older son) – for both need to hear and respond to it.  Just recasting the meaning of prodigal was important for me to understand.  I loved this book and have given it or recommended it to others many times over.
  • Tripwire by Lee Child:  This is the third Jack Reacher book by Child.  Reacher is a former military policeman who helps people in trouble.  Child writes an enjoyable yarn and Reacher is an interesting character who has no personal ties, nor does he want any (in light of how we are relationally designed by God).  Child’s book are fairly formulaic, but are well written with elements of suspence, thriller, and mystery.
  • Memoirs of an Ordinary Pastor by D.A. Carson:  Once I got into this book, I really enjoyed reading about Carson’s father – Tom.  D.A. Carson uses Tom’s own journals to tell his story.   Tom, was by all accounts an ordinary pastor in Canada who labored faithfully in a difficult place with precious little by way of visible results to his ministry.  Tom Carson was no pastor mega-star, but more than worthy of considering how he sought the Lord in his work.  He certainly was not perfect and D.A. does not shy away from pointing out some of the ways his father may have failed or not understood well the grace of God.  I was just about brought to tears by the end of the book and was encouraged in a number of ways as a pastor to read this book.  (Thanks Joel!)

The Shack – Compendium of Reviews/Resources

Here is a glut of linked resources on The Shack (full disclosure:  these are not favorable reviews).  The interview with the author referenced at the beginning of the post is interesting – the author responds to some of the theological concerns raised within the book.

(HT:  Challies)

Free in March

Here are a couple of freebies to take advantage of during the month of March:

Christian Audio is offering their usual free audiobook of the month.  This month it is Donald Whitney’s Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life. I have used this book in teaching through spiritual disciplines and found it to be helpful in many ways.

Also, during the month of March, you can access the online version of the ESV Study Bible here.  I have really enjoyed the ESV Study Bible and everything that is in it the published version is available online.  I have often looked a passage or an article up online if I didn’t have the physical version at hand.  This would be a great way to explore this Bible if you don’t have a copy and/or have been thinking about getting one (highly recommended).  Here is some information from an email I got from the publisher:

Crossway is pleased to make the ESV Online Study Bible available free–for anyone and everyone–for a limited time beginning today, March 2 through March 31, 2009.

As many of you have already experienced, the the ESV Online Study Bible provides numerous interactive features in addition to those found in the print edition, enabling readers to:
Record personal notes, reflections, and links
Click hyperlinked cross references
Search by verse, topic, or keyword
Digitally highlight Bible passages or key words with various colors
Listen to audio of passages

For full access and free trial use of these features for one month, users can create a login and password at http://www.esvstudybible.org/online. Email information will not be shared, nor will there be any obligation to purchase.

Quick Links

I like this firefox addon:  Juice

I read about Juice at makeuseof – a website that I might need to make more use of!

Modern Parables

You can watch the six “modern parables” that have been produced by Modern Parables for a limited time online.  I have been thinking through a way to share some of theses with the church and hope to do some type of Modern Parable event at the church in February.

If you watch any of the films, let me know what you think.

Advent

Here’s an online advent calendar

Here is something I wrote for our church to describe Advent…

What is Advent?
Advent is a period of four weeks (or part of four weeks) leading up to Christmas, in which we anticipate the coming of Christ.  The word Advent comes from the Latin word adventus, meaning “coming, arrival”.  There are many ways to celebrate Advent, such as using an Advent calendar and/or an Advent wreath (see below) as we are using in our Worship Services. The purpose of Advent is to help focus our attention upon Christ and His coming and this is increasingly more and more important in our fast-paced consumer culture.  Advent is both about celebration and anticipation.  We celebrate the Incarnation (John 1:14 – “The Word became flesh and dwelt among us…”) and we anticipate the Second Coming of Christ our King.  We need both elements to steady us during our “Pilgrim Days”  – reminding us of the Truth of God’s Work amongst us and in us through Christ and the promise to bring about the full consummation of God’s Kingdom.

Continue reading

Bible Resources

Here are a few resources to consult for your study of Scripture:

  • bestcommentaries.com:  I haven’t spent much time on this site, but it looks like a great resource (HT:  Matt Adair)
  • best-bible.org:  “Explaining Bible Translations and Recommending Resources (HT: Ed Eubanks)
  • Bible Study Magazine:  This is a new magazine that will be published bi-monthly starting in November by logos.  Will be interesting to see what this mag is like and if it is helpful.

Suffering and a Good God

Tragedy, suffering, and pain. As much as we would like to be immune from them – we aren’t. Whenever we see suffering on a grand scale, such as the recent Myanmar storms that have left so many dead, school shootings, Hurricane Katrina, tornadoes, etc…, the question of the goodness of God is bound to come up. This is a difficult topic, regardless of whether we are Christian or non-Christian, and one worth discussing with honesty (about ourselves) and compassion for others (particularly those who have suffered greatly).

It is important that we don’t just regurgitate the opinions of others, but it is also helpful to have some conversation partners along the way. Here are some resources that I would recommend to further explore this issue from a Christian perspective:

What thoughts, books, sermons, etc…have you found helpful?

Update (May 14, ’08):  Here are some of the recommendations made by friends (these can also be found in the comment section).