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An Interview with Crossway Employees

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We asked a few Crossway employees to answer a question regarding their journey with Scripture. May their responses be an encouragement to you.

Q: What is a passage of Scripture that has been meaningful in your life and why?


And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. – Romans 8:28

“This amazing verse comes towards the end of an amazing chapter of an amazing book. It speaks of an almighty, sovereign God who is not unapproachable or remote, but who can be known and loved and who knows those who love him, whom he called from the fathomless eons of eternity. This God knows what is good for his children, whom he loves, and causes whatever happens to those who love him to be ultimately for their eternal good. He is the author of our salvation in the Lord Jesus Christ and definer of good and love, most perfectly expressed in his beloved Son.

This verse has been with me throughout my Christian life, sometimes as a comfort, sometimes with conviction, and sometimes as a challenge; but always revealing that God is God: all-knowing, all-loving, all-good, and all-wise. I marvel that he loves such a sinner as me, and yet I can love him who first loved me. I am blessed to be in such nail-scarred hands.”

Anthony Gosling
Vice President, Sales


But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. – Titus 3:4-7

“Titus 3 is one of my favorite passages. Paul provides practical instruction for living out our faith, specifically in how we treat one another. Our motivation to ‘show perfect courtesy toward all people’ (Titus 3:2) comes from recognizing that God lavished love and mercy on us when we were far from worthy of such grace. A reminder of just how bleak our lives were prior to salvation (Titus 3:3) is immediately followed by one of the most beautiful pronouncements of the gospel in all of Scripture.”

Erika Allen
Editor, Bibles


I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you soon, so that I too may be cheered by news of you. For I have no one like him, who will be genuinely concerned for your welfare. For they all seek their own interests, not those of Jesus Christ. But you know Timothy’s proven worth, how as a son with a father he has served with me in the gospel. – Philippians 2:19-22

“For the last several years I’ve reflected often on Paul’s words in this passage. I’m challenged by what Paul identifies here in Timothy–a man who has chosen to live triply for others. Paul commends Timothy’s genuine concern for the Philippians, his service to Paul (as a son with a father in the gospel), and his focused commitment to Jesus Christ. This passage grabs me as a powerful summary of the kind of man I want to become: spending my life for the good of others, serving and supporting my colleagues, and in all things seeking the interests of Christ our Lord.”

James Kinnard
Executive Director, Marketing


For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly LORD of hosts, blessed is the one who trusts in you! – Psalm 84:11-12

“There are so many meaningful Scriptures (naturally!), but one that I find myself going back to a lot in life is this verse in Psalm 84. Many times I find myself longing for different seasons of life or for specific prayers to be answered, especially when my plans differ from what God actually ordains in my life. When I read this verse, I’m reminded that he is sovereign and no matter my circumstances, whether he’s withholding something or allowing circumstances that are not ideal, that it is ultimately for my good. If it is good for me to have a particular job… he will let it come to pass. If it is good for me to have a family… he will let it come to pass. If it’s any good thing for me… he will allow it.

Knowing I am ‘blessed’ when I trust in him in all circumstances helps me to focus on the eternal value of each walk in life. I just love the visual of the Lord shining brightly on us as the sun, and yet providing a shield of protection when needed. His bestowing favor and honor for his work in our lives is just a beautiful picture of him pouring out grace in our lives.”

Danielle Dyba
Customer Service Representative


The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup; you hold my lot.
The lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
indeed, I have a beautiful inheritance.
I bless the Lord who gives me counsel;
in the night also my heart instructs me.
I have set the Lord always before me;
because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken.
Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices;
my flesh also dwells secure.
For you will not abandon my soul to Sheol,
or let your holy one see corruption.
You make known to me the path of life;
in your presence there is fullness of joy;
at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. – Psalm 16:5–11

“These verses serve as a guidepost for me, pointing to what is most important. Regardless of the material possessions and career success I acquire in this life, the Lord is the most important thing I have. Through the work accomplished by Christ, the boundary lines of my spiritual inheritance ‘have fallen for me in pleasant places.’ Moreover, fellowship with the Lord leads to ‘fullness of joy’ and ‘pleasures forevermore.’ In times when desires for earthly things reign in my heart, I am both challenged and comforted by these words. What can be more satisfying than life in Christ? ‘Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices.”

Andrew Tebbe
Marketing Manager


He has told you, O man, what is good;
and what does the Lord require of you
but to do justice, and to love kindness,
and to walk humbly with your God? – Micah 6:8

“Micah 6:8 is every legalist’s favorite verse, mine included. This verse aided in my middle school struggle to answer the question ‘What do I need to do to be right with God?’ As a budding legalist, naturally I was drawn to a list of specific requirements.

  • Do justice? Check.
  • Love kindness? Check.
  • Walk humbly, (not wanting to sound arrogant) check.

But, where I missed the main point, God was faithful to reveal himself.

Through his Word, God showed Christ taking the just punishment I deserved. He showed Christ displaying the greatest act of loving kindness. And he showed Christ walking humbly…even to death on a cross. In this way, Micah 6:8 has become even more meaningful to me than it ever could have been as a list of things to cross off. Instead, I see it as a list of things Christ has already crossed off on my behalf. Praise God!”

Ted Cockle
Design Coordinator


Do you have a passage of Scripture that has been particularly meaningful to you? Post to comments and share with us!

 

March 6, 2014 | Posted in: AAA - BLOG UPDATE,General,Life & Doctrine,Q&A,Spiritual Growth,The Bible,The Christian Life | Author: Lizzy Jeffers @ 8:55 am | (2) Comments »

Devotional Resources

This week’s excerpt in our Devotional Resources series is taken from “Morning and Evening”, by Charles H. Spurgeon, revised and edited by Alistair Begg.


Morning

“And from his fullness we have all received.” – John 1:16

These words tell us that there is a fullness of Christ. There is a fullness of essential Deity, for “in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily.” (Col. 2:9) There is a fullness of perfect manhood, for in Him, bodily, that Godhead was revealed. There is a fullness of atoning efficacy in His blood, for “the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.” (1 Jn. 1:7) There is a fullness of justifying righteousness in His life, for “there is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.” (Rom. 8:1) There is a fullness of divine prevalence in His plea, for “He is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them.” (Heb. 7:25) There is a fullness of victory in His death, for through death He destroyed him that had the power of death–that is, the devil. There is a fullness of efficacy in His resurrection from the dead, for by it “he has caused us to be born again to a living hope.” (1 Pet. 1:3) There is a fullness of triumph in His ascension, for “when he ascended on high he led a host of captives, and he gave gifts to men.” (Eph. 4:8) There is a fullness of blessings of every sort and shape; a fullness of grace to pardon, of grace to regenerate, of grace to sanctify, of grace to preserve, and of grace to perfect. There is a fullness at all times; a fullness of comfort in affliction, a fullness of guidance in prosperity. A fullness of every divine attribute–of wisdom, of power, of love; a fullness that it is impossible to survey, much less to explore. “For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell.” (Col. 1:19) Oh, what a fullness must this be of which all receive! Fullness, indeed, must there be when the stream is always flowing, and yet the well springs up as free, as rich, as full as ever. Come, believer, and get all your need supplied; ask largely, and you will receive largely, for this “fullness” is inexhaustible  and is treasured up where all the needy may reach it, even in Jesus, Immanuel–God with us.

 

Evening

“But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart.” – Luke 2:19

There was an exercise, on the part of this blessed woman, of three powers of her being: her memory–she kept all these things; her affections–she kept them in her heart; her intellect–she pondered them; so memory, affection, and understanding were all exercised about the things that she had heard. Beloved, remember what you have heard of your Lord Jesus and what He has done for you; make your heart the golden pot of manna to preserve the memorial of the heavenly bread whereon you have fed in days gone by. Let your memory treasure up everything about Christ that you have either felt or known or believed, and then let your fond affections hold Him fast forevermore. Love the person of your Lord! Bring forth the alabaster box of your heart, even though it be broken, and let all the precious ointment of your affection come streaming onto His pierced feet. Let your intellect be exercised concerning the Lord Jesus. Meditate upon what you read. Stop not at the surface; dive into the depths. Be not as the swallow, which touches the brook with her wing, but as the fish, which penetrates the lowest wave. Abide with your Lord: Let Him not be to you as a wayfaring man who tarries for a night, but constrain Him, saying, “Stay with us…the day is now far spent.” (Lk. 24:29) Hold Him, and do not let Him go. The word ponder means to weigh. Make ready the balances of judgment. Oh, but where are the scales that can weigh the Lord Christ? “He takes up the coastlands like fine dust”–who shall take Him up? He weighs “the mountain in scales”–in what scales shall we weigh Him? (Is. 40:15, 12) If your understanding cannot comprehend, let your affections apprehend; and if your spirit cannot compass the Lord Jesus in the grasp of understanding, let it embrace Him in the arms of affection.

January 27, 2014 | Posted in: AAA - BLOG UPDATE,Life & Doctrine,Sanctification,Sanctification/Growth,Spiritual Growth,The Christian Life | Author: Lizzy Jeffers @ 8:30 am | 0 Comments »

Devotional Resources

This week’s excerpt in our Devotional Resources series is taken from “For the Love of God: A Daily Companion for Discovering the Riches of God’s Word”, by D.A. Carson.


Monday, January 20
Genesis 21; Matthew 20; Nehemiah 10; Acts 20

In the nineteenth century, Lord Acton wrote that all power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. The founding fathers of the American Republic would not have disagreed. That is one of the reasons why they constructed a government with checks and balances–they did not want any one branch to have too much power, because they knew that sooner or later it would be corrupted. That is also a primary reason why they wanted constitutionally mandated democratic voting. It was not because they trusted the wisdom of people as a collective–their writings show that they were very nervous about giving too much power to popular vote. But they wanted a mechanism for voting people out of office, replacing them with others. That way, no one in power could unceasingly accumulate power: sooner or later the people could turf them out, and without bloodshed.

Jesus understands the nature of power in all governmental hierarchy: “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them” (Matt. 20:25). Sad to say, ecclesiastical power can be equally corrupting. That is why Jesus sets out a radically different paradigm: “Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be your slave” (Matt. 20:26-27).

It is of vital importance to the health of the church that we understand this passage right. Three reflections may focus its meaning.

First, the ultimate model in this respect is the Lord Jesus himself, who “did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many” (Matt. 20:28). This is not only a great text about the substitutionary nature of the atonement Jesus achieved when he died on the cross (cf. Matt. 20:17-19), but powerful insistence that the life and death of Jesus are to constitute the measure of Christian leadership.

Second, becoming a slave of all most emphatically does not mean that leaders must become servile, stupid, ignorant, or merely nice–any more than Jesus’ leadership and sacrifice were characterized by such incompetence.

Third, what it does mean is that Christian leadership is profoundly self-denying for the sake of others, like Christ’s ultimate example of self-denial for the sake of others. So the church must not elevate people to places of leadership who have many of the gifts necessary to high office, but who lack this one. To lead or teach, for example, you must have the gift of leadership or teaching (Rom. 12:6-8). But you must be profoundly committed to principled self-denial for the sake of the brothers and sisters in Christ, or you are disqualified.

January 20, 2014 | Posted in: AAA - BLOG UPDATE,Life & Doctrine,Sanctification,Sanctification/Growth,Spiritual Growth,The Christian Life | Author: Lizzy Jeffers @ 8:30 am | 0 Comments »

Devotional Resources

“We need to get people alone with this book, reading it for themselves, understanding it for themselves. Because when this is all over it’s going to be about God’s Word, and his authority is the only authority.”

~Francis Chan

With Chan’s pertinent words in mind, we want to make you aware of devotional resources which may serve your Bible reading in this new year. Today’s post is the first in a four-part series to give you a sample of some of our favorite devotional resources.


The following is an excerpt from the January 13th entry of Walking with God Day by Day: 365 Devotional Selections by Martin Lloyd-Jones, edited by Robert Backhouse:

January 13

THE SIGNIFICANCE OF PENTECOST

Would that all the LORD’s people were prophets, that the LORD would put his spirit upon them!
Numbers 11:29

The great purpose of Pentecost is to give the final proof of the fact that Jesus of Nazareth is the Son of God and the Savior of the world. This is declared. The second thing is the great inauguration of the Church as His Body; and third, it is a proof of the fact that the various people who are added to the Church are members of the Body. Also, in the Old Testament we are told that the Holy Spirit was with men or that He came upon them. He worked upon them from without, as it were, and what David even said, you remember, was, “Take not thy holy spirit from me” (Psalm 51:11), as if the Holy Spirit was with him–that is the Old Testament terminology. The New Testament terminology is in, within; He works from within, and He abides. In the Old Testament He came upon men and left them. He comes, in the New Testament, because we are members of the Body of Christ and because the Spirit comes from Christ through the whole Body. Because we are members of the Body, the Spirit abides in us–perfectly; and that, it seems to me, is the essence of the teaching with regard to this matter.

On the Day of Pentecost the rushing mighty wind and the cloven tongues as of fire especially emphasized, not the filling with the Spirit, but the baptizing into the unity of the Body, the inauguration of the Church. That is why you have the special phenomena. The cloven tongues of fire were never repeated. The walls were shaken on another occasion, but this particular sound, this noise, the gathering together of the special phenomena places a uniqueness upon the event of the Day of Pentecost that has never been repeated. The filling with the Spirit is something that can be, and often is, repeated, but that is not the vital thing that happened at Pentecost. What is emphasized at Pentecost is that the Church became Christ’s Body, and the Spirit was given to fill the Body.

A THOUGHT TO PONDER
Pentecost inaugurated the Church as Christ’s Body

Learn more about Walking with God Day by Day: 365 Devotional Selections

Social Media Isn’t All that Social

At this point, it goes without saying that social media shouldn’t be called “social.” “Anti-social” media would be a better name for it. Whether it’s Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest, “social” media doesn’t serve to make us any more social at all. In fact, it too often makes us more isolated, more alone.

Real Relationship?

Social media does this through pretension. It pretends to connect us with others while it cheats us out of deep companionship, true knowing, and undistracted time with those we love. It amuses us, seeming to answer our desire for relationship while robbing us of the time we need to know and be known. It purports to establish relationships, while making us jealous of the lives of others, or by giving us a platform to brag about how full of friends and fun our lives are at any particular time. “Here’s my great dessert at this great restaurant with my great friends! Don’t you wish you were me?” is the underlying message.

Our “smart” phones (another misnomer) have only served to make us a society of lonely voyeurs and exhibitionists. Yes, we feel alone—but “smarter” technology isn’t the answer and social media is only compounding the problem.

The True Answer to Our Isolation

The answer to our lostness isn’t found in technological advances, a bigger Twitter following, or more Facebook likes. The answer to our aloneness isn’t technological at all. It is human to its core—not flashy, glitzy, or dreamed up in the Pacific Northwest. The answer to our isolation doesn’t come to us in gigabytes or new apps, but in blood and amniotic fluid, in pain and deep isolation. It is an ancient answer, an answer that was spoken before time. It is an answer Who is as near to you  . . . even nearer to you . . . than that piece of technology you can’t let go of.

The desire to know and be known is deep in of all of us but social media isn’t the answer. Paul knew the answer when he wrote,

For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known. (1 Cor 13:12)

The answer to our aloneness is Love Incarnate and the amazingly great news is that Love incarnate is already among us; in fact, he is one of us. His name is Immanuel, “God with us”, and His purpose is to be with us and among us; to let us know that we are already known and already deeply loved . . . and that he truly understands us—not simply by his omniscience but by life lived as one of us. His media was a stone feeding trough, a hillside with lilies where he fed hungry families, a bloody cross, and an empty tomb . . . and he did it all so that we would know that we are not alone.

Forever Known

Sure, the siren’s song of false relationship blares loudly and incessantly. In fact, you’re probably reading this because you answered her call. But don’t expect her to give you something she can’t. She can’t give you union with another or the knowledge that you are already known. Only the incarnate Christ is able to do that and the good news is that he has. And his life means that you will never be alone.


Elyse M. Fitzpatrick (MA, Trinity Theological Seminary) is a counselor, a retreat and conference speaker, and the head of Counsel from the Cross Ministries. Fitzpatrick has authored 18 books, including her most recent title from Crossway, Found in Him: The Joy of the Incarnation and Our Union with Christ (trailer, excerpt).

 

 

October 25, 2013 | Posted in: AAA - BLOG UPDATE,Books,Culture,Guest Post,Identity in Christ,Life & Doctrine,The Christian Life | Author: Crossway Author @ 8:00 am | (2) Comments »