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Archive for October, 2011

Reformation Day! Free eBooks and 35% off at Crossway.org

On October 31, 1517 a monk with a mallet nailed a document to the church door in Wittenberg, Germany, changing the course of history. Martin Luther’s Ninety-Five Theses was a pivotal moment in a Reformation that spread throughout Europe and eventually impacted the entire world.

See what Crossway is doing to celebrate Reformation Day:

  • On the Crossway Facebook page: Like us and check the wall to get a free eBook of The Reformation by Steve Nichols.
  • On the ESV Bible Facebook page: Like us and check the wall to get a free eBook of Luther’s commentary on Galatians from the Crossway Classic Commentary Series.
  • Join Impact and enjoy 35% off products on Crossway.org until midnight using the code REFORM at check out.

Offer valid until midnight CT on 10/31/11.

October 31, 2011 | Posted in: Uncategorized | Author: Angie Cheatham @ 11:57 am | (3) Comments »

Video: Kevin DeYoung and Greg Gilbert Discuss “What is the Mission of the Church?”

Join Scott Anderson as he talks with authors Kevin DeYoung and Greg Gilbert about their newest book What is the Mission of the Church?: Making Sense of Social Justice, Shalom, and the Great Commission. This is a two part interview: Part One spends time getting to know the authors and the backstory of this book as well as talking about “higher level” issues while Part Two (beginning at 47:45) spends time talking about more specific topics and questions raised in the book.  Watch the full video or skip ahead to some central themes:

  • 16:57: DeYoung and Gilbert share the back story of What is the Mission of the Church?
  • 22:24: What do the terms “mission”, “missional”, and “missions” mean? Are these terms still functional?
  • 39:39: Should there be a distinction between the mission of the universal Church and the mission of the local church? What is a believers’ individual mission?
  • 47:45: DeYoung and Gilbert answer the question “What is the mission of the church?”
  • 57:10: A discussion on the nature of Jesus’ mission in the world, how it relates to our mission, and why they are not the same.
  • 1:10:40: Why the chapter on Story is so important in relation to shalom, social justice, and God’s mission.
  • 1:16:58: What does Scripture say about social justice?
  • 1:26:53 – The place of “good works” in the church
  • 1:34:08 – Reflection on Jeremiah 29:7 and what it means to seek the welfare (shalom) of the city.

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October 28, 2011 | Posted in: Uncategorized | Author: Lindsay Tully @ 1:00 pm | 0 Comments »

Upcoming Webcast: John Piper to Address Pastors to Promote Racial Reconciliation

Tune in to DG Live on November 3, 2011 at 7:30pm EST (6:30pm CT, and 4:30pm Pacific) as John Piper’s local address to pastors will be broadcast worldwide in an effort to promote racial reconciliation.

The address relates to his new release, Bloodlines: Race, Cross, and the Christian, where Piper confesses his own racisim as a youth in Greenville, SC and his need for the gospel.

His message is nothing short of a plea for racial harmony and a call to action for the church. “Conservative evangelicals seem to have become indifferent to the sin of racism,” explains Tim Keller. Whether it’s weariness, our stubborn hearts, or outright denial behind this indifference—racism is still a relevant issue that both Keller and Piper assert deeply offends God.

Though many strategies have been put forward to combat racism—educational, governmental, social—they have all been ineffective in eradicating racism. These strategies fail to recognize that at the root of racism, human sin and a supernatural enemy are at work and they won’t be conquered with good intentions or human effort.

“There is little doubt that where maddening hopeless, sinful, self-destructive behaviors and structures hold sway over large groups of people—white or black, left or right—the Devil is deeply at work,” Piper explains. “What hope does a message of personal responsibility or structural intervention have against this supernatural power? None.”

But the good news is that racial justice and reconciliation are possible. The good news of the gospel is that all bloodlines come together in the bloodline of Christ.

| Posted in: Uncategorized | Author: Angie Cheatham @ 8:00 am | 0 Comments »

Why Work?

As human beings, we have been designed not only to rest and to play, but also to work. From the very beginning of Scripture we see that the one true God is not a couch potato God, nor did he create a couch potato world. As the Genesis storyline opens, we read, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” Here we are immediately introduced to God as a thoughtful and creative worker. At first glance we observe the triune God as an active deity. The Spirit of God is hovering over the waters. God’s infinite creativity, omnipotence, and omniscience are unleashed, and he is intimately engaged in his good creation.

Created to Contribute

Scripture tells us that the most bedrock answer to the question of why we work is that we were created with work in mind. Being made in God’s image, we have been designed to work, to be fellow workers with God. To be an image-bearer is to be a worker. In our work we are to show off God’s excellence, creativity, and glory to the world. We work because we bear the image of One who works. This is why the apostle Paul writes to a group of first-century followers of Jesus who have embraced the gospel, “If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat” (2 Thess. 3:10). At first blush, Paul’s rather blunt words seem cold and lacking Christian compassion, but upon further theological reflection, Paul’s words convey to us some needed insight. Paul does not rebuke those who, for various legitimate reasons, cannot work, but he does say that an unwillingness to work is no trivial thing. For anyone to refuse to work is a fundamental violation of God’s creation design for humankind.

When we grasp what God intended for his image-bearers, it is not surprising that throughout the book of Proverbs the wise are praised for their diligence and the foolish are rebuked for their laziness. When we hear the word fool, we often think of someone who is mentally deficient. However, a foolish person in Scripture is not necessarily one who lacks intelligence but rather one who lives as if God does not exist. The psalmist puts it this way: “The fool says in his heart, ‘There is no God’” (Ps. 14:1). A fool is one who rejects not only the Creator but also creation design, including the design to work. Throughout Scripture slothfulness is rightly viewed in a negative light. A slothful Christian is a contradiction in terms. We should not be shocked to see that the Christian church throughout history has reflected negative sentiments about slothfulness. Sloth finds a prominent place in Pope Gregory the Great’s listing of the seven deadly sins. The Protestant Reformers spoke of the poverty of slothfulness and laziness. Consistently they made the connection that those who spend their time in idleness and ease should rightly doubt the sincerity of their Christian commitment.

God could have placed Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden and made it much like the world of humans in WALL-E, where they could sit around with food coming to them, sipping their life-giving nutrients out of giant cups. This was not God’s desire or his design for his good world. Because God himself is a worker, and because we are his image-bearers, we were designed to reflect who God is in, through, and by our work. The work we are called to do every day is an important part of our image-bearing nature and stewardship. As human beings we were created to do things. In this sense we are not only human beings, we are also human doings. We have been created to contribute to God’s good world.

From Work Matters by Tom Nelson

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October 26, 2011 | Posted in: AAA - BLOG UPDATE,Life / Doctrine,The Christian Life,Work / Vocation | Author: Lindsay Tully @ 8:00 am | (2) Comments »

Caring for a Loved One with Cancer: Be Prepared to Help for the Long Haul

It is not unusual for visits, calls, and offers of help for those battling cancer to taper off after a couple weeks. When someone calls and a cheery voice answers, the assumption can be made that all is well and help is no longer needed. However, this is sometimes far from the truth.

Even when spirits are high and recovery is going well, it doesn’t mean that needs are no longer present, especially when a loved one is undergoing chemo or radiation treatments and energy is low. The side effects of these treatments can render anyone incapable of performing simple tasks that are suddenly too strenuous to accomplish.

Be committed to being available for the long haul and to continue helping throughout the length of the cancer treatments. Such perseverance and faithfulness will be forever remembered and deeply appreciated.

“[Love] . . . always hopes, always perseveres.” - 1 Corinthians 13:7

Adapted from Caring for a Loved One with Cancer by June Hunt

As we recognize breast cancer awareness month, we’ve shared several helpful thoughts from June Hunt’s new book Caring for a Loved One with Cancer. Read a sample chapter, buy the book, or check out our related posts: