Midweek Roundup - 12/4/13

Every Wednesday we like to share some recent links that we found informative, insightful, or helpful. These links will often be related to Crossway books, Bibles, or authors—but not always. We hope this list is an interesting break for the middle of your week, encouraging your faith and equipping you for life and ministry.

1. Doug Wilson writes an open letter to Reformed rappers

So I want to ask you to think of this letter as the work of an appreciative and affectionate and somewhat distant Dutch uncle . . . although I am not Dutch. I believe you have been called to a very important task, and I want to urge you to honor God in that work. The reason for this letter is that I believe that the importance of your labor is such that it is going to generate a great deal of trouble for you, and I believe that I do know something about handling that, whether we are talking about causes or consequences.

2. Mike Cosper defends Katniss Everdeen and The Hunger Games

Though she isn't a substitutionary Christ figure, I think there's another type to consider when looking at her story (especially in the first two installments): the suffering servant. Consider The Lord of the Rings trilogy as a parallel: The Hunger Games doesn't give us an Aragorn, a warrior-king who rallies the forces of good. Instead, it gives us someone more complex and difficult, a girl who unwittingly becomes a symbol of national hope and rebellion, whose road is marked not by victory but suffering. She's not Aragorn; she's Frodo, a young, brave girl, carrying a burden in a political drama that is much bigger than her. Aragorn doesn't have nightmares about the enemies he's killed, but Frodo (and Katniss) never sleep well again.

3.  Timothy Larsen offers advice for "experts"

How are we supposed to navigate the relationship between expertise and community? Our attitude when there are experts in our midst should be, I believe, a teachable spirit that is open to correction and new insights, combined with a holy boldness to do what God has called us to do.

When I am in the role of the expert in the house, I try to live by a few rules...

4. Kevin DeYoung shares 7 thoughts related to pastors who write books

I think I can honestly say that my desire to write and be published was mostly about a passion to say something worthwhile and a love for writing. I was thrilled when my first book (Freedom and Boundaries) was self-published. This meant my elders could read it, my church could read it, my parents could read it. I wasn’t thinking about anything bigger. I just wanted some of my ideas to get out there. But I also know I have to remind myself of these motives often. It’s easy to start with the best of intentions and end up being an author for all the wrong reasons—because someone tells you it’s time to publish another book, because you want another pay day, because you want to climb the ladder of ministry success. All of us who write must constantly ask the question: am I really doing this to serve others or to serve myself?

5. Video: Michael Horton explains how it can be that Jesus is the "only way" to God

Michael Horton recently sat down and answered five of the most common apologetics questions people get when they share their faith with their friends and family. We’ll be posting one each week through the end of the year.