Category Archives: Recommended Short Reads

Recommended Short Reads (8/19/2016)

Your First Breath After Death “What makes being saved sweet for you? What makes heaven such a beautiful haven of happiness? Among millions of possible answers, only one is right. The best thing about that first breath will be that we are finally breathing face to face with our God.”

How Parenting Flies By Now you probably think I’m going to say, ‘Treasure those moments with your kids. Don’t miss a single little league game or choir performance.’ And yes, by all means, we should attend their games and invest in their lives. But three other lessons have become especially clear to me.”

Why Study the Books of Ezra and Nehemiah? “The main character in this narrative is the Lord God. Other central characters serve God by leading his people—Zerubbabel, Ezra, and Nehemiah. We might be tempted to focus exclusively on their wise and godly leadership; these men are great examples indeed, and Nehemiah especially is a forceful and dramatic figure. The writers, however (including Ezra and Nehemiah as first-person narrators), consistently point to the sovereign God directing the action. It is God who moves the hearts of the Persian kings to enable this restoration. Repeatedly we see God’s … Keep Reading

Recommended Short Reads (8/17/2016)

Watch the Trailer for ‘The Biggest Story: The Animated Short Film’  “Narrated by the author and featuring captivating animations adapted from the book, along with an original score by composer John Poon, The Biggest Story: The Animated Short Film will engage children as they are led on an exciting journey through the Bible in just 26 minutes—connecting the dots from the garden of Eden to Christ’s death on the cross to the new heaven and new earth.”

How Can I Learn to Receive—and Give—Criticism in Light of the Cross? Justin Taylor helpfully outlines Alfred Poirier’s work.

When You’re Not a Typical Woman “In my conversations with ladies of many ages, I’ve noticed that we have varying understandings of the typical woman, but few of us think of ourselves as one. Start a conversation with a woman in your church, ask her all about herself, find out her life story, and usually you will hit a point where she will tell you that she doesn’t (or didn’t) feel like a typical woman.”

Is the Christian Faith Rational?  “When I say that Christianity is rational, I do not mean that the truth of Christianity in all of its majesty can be deduced … Keep Reading

Recommended Short Reads (8/8/2016)

5 Lessons My Parents Taught Me About Sexuality Jaquelle Crow outlines how her parents helped her have an understanding of sexuality from a Christian worldview. “There were certain truths they impressed on me—some implicit and some explicit—that were crucial for catching a Christ-centered vision of sexuality. Five stand out most brightly when I reflect on the past 18 years.”

Biblical Friendship Cannot Be Hacked “Surely something as biblical and supremely human as the discipline of friendship is worth recapturing. But where do we begin? How can we reclaim the biblical contours of such an important relationship?”

Two Ways of Thinking “There are fundamentally two ways to approach any concept, and only two. We can start with God and His Word, or we can start somewhere else; and the ‘somewhere else’ usually boils down to ourselves.”

My Favorite Book for Discipling New (and Old) Christians First, like I mentioned, the book really does cover all the basics. Not only does it include a section on taking up the cross and following Jesus, but also a section on why we can trust the Bible. Not only are the topics of Bible reading and church involvement covered, but also Christian sexual ethics and … Keep Reading

Recommended Short Reads (8/3/2016)

No Bible, No Breakfast A good example of how we can (and shouldn’t) make a helpful personal approach a burden on other Christians’ conscience.

Satan’s Favorite Weapon Against You “Therefore, Satan’s primary goal in the thousands of his various attacks on us is to take down our faith. His primary goal against the church is to fragment the formidable force of united faith and isolate believers, weakening the church and making individuals more vulnerable (Hebrews 3:12–13, 10:25). His forces are hell-bent on these strategic objectives (Ephesians 6:11–12).” Jon Bloom then offers four helps to resist the attack.

What is Facing the Church Today? “Being American and being Christian are NOT one-in-the-same. The Scriptures define Christian very differently than culture at large. It is quite possible that those people who checked the ‘Christian’ box on a survey are no longer doing so; quite frankly because they no longer feel the societal pressure to be ‘Christian.’ To them, shedding the label ‘Christian’ makes sense.”

Recommended Resources on Assurance for Tenderhearted Souls Tim Raymond recommends some helpful resources to help the “true believer who is nonetheless overly anxious, almost obsessive, about his spiritual state. Everybody around him will quickly identify him as a Keep Reading

Recommended Short Reads (7/27/2016)

How to Pray When Your Soul is Bone Dry “You know you ought to pray. You know that God invites and even commands you to pray. He loves to hear from you, loves to know you. Yet there are times when your soul feels bone dry, when even opening your mouth to pray seems an impossibility. What do you do?”

Why Believe the Bible, and Not Other Religious Texts? John Piper gives a helpful answer to a big question in a short amount of time. The details behind his answer are in a book that is available for free download.

Is the Declaration of Independence a ‘Christian’ Document? Gregg L. Frazer introduces a term that describes what is expressed in the document—theistic rationalism—and its relation to Christian and Deist beliefs.Keep Reading

Recommended Short Reads (7/21/2016)

Is God the Father like my Father? “In the Bible, the family unit gives us a picture of how God relates to us, his children…our earthly fathers give us a picture, a shadow, of what God the Father is truly like.” This article gives some advice and some hope for those whose fathers are absent or abusive.

Why We Don’t Punish Our Kids The difference between punishment and discipline for the parent who shepherds their child.

Loving Muslims Begins with Honesty Here’s an excellent conversation with D. A. Carson discussing the differences between Christian and Islamic theology about God and the grounds of forgiveness/salvation and whether or not we should say we worship the same deity.  “Better than minimizing the differences between the central beliefs of Christianity and Islam — and they are central and significant — is acknowledging the differences and modeling disagreement with courtesy and respect.”

How Should I Process the Current Tensions and Violence in Our Country? Kevin DeYoung offers a number of helpful suggestions to respond in a Christian way to the tensions, violence, and racial discord evident in recent events.

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Recommended Short Reads (12/10/15)

Michael A. G. Haykin’s Review of Ibrahim Ag Mohamed’s God’s Love for Muslims: Communicating Bible Grace and New Life This is a timely read given current events and the American church’s lack of familiarity with Islam. An excerpt from Haykin’s review: “His profound familiarity with Islam, and also his extensive knowledge of the Scriptures, is evident throughout this handsomely-produced book in which he deals with Muslim beliefs and practice (9–42), their misunderstandings about the Christian Faith (43–83), and then how believers in the West especially can help Muslims come to true faith in the Lord Jesus (84–95).”

Spurious Correlations Some fun proof that correlations aren’t always useful.

The Right Doctrine from the Wrong Text This post points out the popular misuse of Matthew 25. We owe it to the generation to follows to not just have right conclusions but also to use right means to reach those conclusions.

You Need the Local Church to be Healthy “In less than three minutes, Trip Lee explains why the local church is essential to every Christian’s health. The following is a lightly edited transcript.”

A Crash Course on the Muslim Worldview and Islamic Theology Here’s a six part video series: Understanding Islam (Part … Keep Reading