The Quotable Round-Up #29

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Here are the quotes for the week featuring the book by R. C. Sproul “What Is Reformed Theology?: Understanding the Basics”. Enjoy and God bless!

“The agent of predestination is God. In his sovereignty he predestinates. Human beings are the object of his predestination. In short, predestination refers to God’s sovereign plan for human beings, decreed by him in eternity. We must add, however, that the concept of predestination includes more than the future destiny of humans. It also includes whatever comes to pass in time and space.”

“For a person to be able to come to Christ, it must first be granted or “given” to that person to come to Christ. God must do something for us to overcome our moral inability to come to Christ. We cannot embrace Christ in the flesh. Without the aid of the Holy Spirit, we cannot come to Christ.”

“The humanistic and pagan view of free will is that the will acts from a posture of indifference. By indifference we mean that the will is inclined to neither good nor evil but exists in a state of moral neutrality. The mind of fallen man has no bias, no predisposition to evil. This view of free will is on a collision course with the biblical view of sin.”

”If we still have a will, why are we unable to convert ourselves or even prepare ourselves for conversion? The simple answer is this: because we do not want to. We have no desire for the righteousness of God, and free choice, by definition, involves choosing what we desire.”

To say that mankind is radically corrupt is to say that sin penetrates to the root or core of our being. Sin is not tangential or peripheral, but arises from the center of our being. It flows from what the Bible calls the “heart,” which does not refer to the muscle that pumps blood throughout our bodies but to the “core” of our being. Even the word core derives from the Latin word for “heart.”

“The covenant of redemption demonstrates the harmony within the Trinity. Over against theories that pit one member of the Godhead against the other two, the covenant of redemption stresses the total agreement between the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in the plan of salvation. This covenant defines the roles of the persons of the Trinity in redemption. The Father sends the Son and the Holy Spirit. The Son enters the arena of this world by incarnation voluntarily. He is no reluctant Redeemer. The Holy Spirit applies the work of Christ to us for our salvation. The Spirit does not chafe at doing the Father’s bidding. The Father is pleased to send the Son and the Spirit into the world, and they are pleased to carry out their respective missions.”

“Every written document has a structure or format by which it is organized. Paragraphs have subjects and chapters have focal points. Reformed theology sees the primary structure of biblical revelation as that of covenant. This is the structure by which the entire history of redemption is worked out.”

“Jesus is enthroned at God’s right hand, and all authority in heaven and on earth has been given to him. It is a profound political reality that Christ now occupies the supreme seat of cosmic authority. The kings of this world and all secular governments may ignore this reality, but they cannot undo it. The universe is no democracy. It is a monarchy. God himself has appointed his beloved Son as the preeminent King. Jesus does not rule by referendum, but by divine right. In the future every knee will bow before him, either willingly or unwillingly. Those who refuse to do so will have their knees broken with a rod of iron.”

The Quotable Round-Up #28

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Here are the quotes for the week featuring the book by R. C. Sproul “What Is Reformed Theology?: Understanding the Basics”. Enjoy and God bless!

“The remission of sins is tied to the atoning work of Christ. In the atonement both propitiation and expiation are involved. Propitiation refers to Christ’s satisfaction of God’s justice, making it “propitious” for God to forgive us. Propitiation may be seen as a vertical act of Christ directed to the Father. At the same time, Christ is an expiation for our sins, removing or carrying away from us our sins.”

“True faith is never alone. It always manifests itself in works. Works that flow out of faith, however, are in no way the ground of our justification. They contribute nothing of merit before God. The only ground or basis of our justification is the merit of Christ. Nor is faith itself a meritorious work or the ground of our justification.”

“The dispute between justification by the infusion of Christ’s righteousness and the imputation of his righteousness is no tempest in a teapot. It makes all the difference in the world whether the ground of my justification rests within me or is accomplished for me. Christ fulfilled the law for me and gained the merit necessary for my justification. This is the ground not only of my justification, but also of my assurance of salvation. If I must wait until I cooperate with the righteousness of Christ infused within me, to the degree that I become inherently righteous, I despair of ever attaining salvation. This is not gospel or “good news”; it is bad news.”

“In our justification, faith is the means by which we are linked to Christ and receive the benefits of his saving work. By faith we receive the transfer or imputation of the righteousness of Christ. Faith is not only a necessary condition, it is a sufficient condition for Christ’s righteousness to be imputed to us. Faith, true faith, is all that is required to be justified by the righteousness of Christ. Faith trusts in and lays hold of a righteousness that is not our own.”

“Forensic justification means we are declared righteous by God in a legal sense. The ground of this legal declaration is the imputation of Christ’s righteousness to our account.”

The doctrine of justification deals with what may be the deepest existential problem a human being can ever face: How can a sinner, an unjust person, ever withstand the judgment of a holy and just God?

The Quotable Round-Up #27

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Enjoy these awesome quotes from the book “Everyday Church: Gospel Communities on Mission”  by authors Tim Chester and Steve Timmis:

 

“We have become outsiders just as Jesus was an outsider. We are marginal in our culture because Jesus is marginal. The cross is the ulti­mate expression of marginalization and to follow him is to take up our cross daily. It is daily to experience marginalization and hostility. Being on the margins is normal Christian experience.”–Tim Chester and Steve Timmis, Everyday Church: Gospel Communities on Mission

 

“The doctrine of election, God’s choice of us, is never intended as an indulgence. Its purpose is always mission.” –Tim Chester and Steve Timmis, Everyday Church: Gospel Communities on Mission

 

“The mes­sage of the Old Testament is the sufferings of Christ and the glories that would follow. Jesus sets the pattern: suffering followed by glory. We suffer hostility and marginalization just as he did. Indeed Jesus suffered the ultimate marginalization: he was pushed out of the world onto the cross.” –Tim Chester and Steve Timmis, Everyday Church: Gospel Communities on Mission

 

 

“Trying to match the world begs the question, If the church is like the world then why bother with the church? The more we become like the world, the less we have to offer. Certainly we want to avoid unnecessary offense and an off-putting experience, but what will draw people to church is always going to be what is different about us.” –Tim Chester and Steve Timmis, Everyday Church: Gospel Communities on Mission

 

“The Christian community demonstrates the effectiveness of the gospel. We are the living proof that the gospel is not an empty word but a powerful word that takes men and women who are lovers of self and transforms them by grace through the Spirit into people who love God and others.” –Tim Chester and Steve Timmis, Everyday Church: Gospel Communities on Mission

 

“The church may never outperform TV shows and music videos, but there is nothing like the community life of the church. There is nowhere else where diverse people come together in the same way. There is nowhere else where broken people find a home. There is nowhere else where grace is experienced and God is present by his Spirit.” –Tim Chester and Steve Timmis, Everyday Church: Gospel Communities on Mission

 

 

Book Review: God’s Word, Our Story: Learning from the Book of Nehemiah by D. A. Carson and Kathleen B. Nelson (Editors)

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I’ve just finished reading the Book of Nehemiah as a part of my devotional when I got this book. I have gone through it multiple times for weeks that I’m beginning to jump to Esther.  I told myself “This will extend my knowledge on that book.” Little did I know that “God’s Word, Our Story” will give me a fresh, bold and exciting spiritual insight to Nehemiah. Aside from a leadership principles go-to book and all the skipping chapters because of the list of names, “God’s Word, Our Story” will inspire you to seek and worship God.

Kathy Keller opens the book with what should every Christian (and what Nehemiah did) should understand the Word of God and base his action plan to what has been reveled in the Bible.

In the next chapter, Tim Keller explains the need to understand the big picture that Nehemiah is projecting. For him it is shallow to look at God’s Word like reading stories and finding the moral lesson it brings. He points out that the ultimate story behind Nehemiah and basically every book in the Bible is the redemptive plan of God. Keller drew also from this book of the Bible on how God’s people should harness unity and to work for God who is the main goal of this building of the wall.

Paige Brown’s contribution to this book dwells on the premises of the fear of God. Using part of John Newton’s “Amazing Grace” she discuss the fear of God and how it gives us confidence in facing today’s challenges.

Nancy Guthrie examines the Nehemiah chapters 7 and 8 and shows how this gathering of the Jews represents a future event that will take place in the new heaven and new earth. She further discusses the joy of the people coming to God and God’s joy of having His chosen people come to Him.

Nehemiah 11-12 was discussed by Carrie Sadom, Jenny Salt and Kathleen Nelson. This 3 part talk was centered in different God centered joy.

Lastly, D. A. Carson contributes a rather dark ending to the conference or a book as he points out the failure of the reformed which Nehemiah had undertaken. We can see not only does it affects the people but to Nehemiah himself.

The most prolific writer among all the contributors, John Piper delivers that ultimate story of the Bible is that God make a name for Himself through the gospel and His mercy to His chosen.

 

From all of the contributors in this book, Tim Keller gets away with the cake. Although Piper, D. A. Carson and Nancy Guthrie gave awesome insights, for me Keller is the best.

Though all of the messages collected here the contributor’s points out 1.) Nehemiah is not just a leadership book and 2.) Nehemiah is part of the ultimate story in the Bible, that is God’s redemptive plan for mankind.

Aside from the usual reflection in the end of each chapter, the readers are taught think as an expositor as further explain in the “Introduction” which is a great help for us who wants a deeper understanding of the books of the Bible. And you may or may not know these a collection of talks in a women’s conference (turned into a book) which you might find odd considering the topic of each chapters are not just geared not just for women. I’m not here to stereotype what’s for men or women but knowing this is what TGC brings out; people attending the conferences will really get saturated with the Word of God.

“God’s Word, Our Story” is a highly recommended book for those who want to get more of Nehemiah. This book is also a call for Christians to be expositors. As Kathy Keller and D. A. Carson uses the movie to further illustrate some points in the book, “God’s Word, Our Story”  is best describe as a blockbuster movie.

My verdict 5 out of 5.

Crossway has provided a complimentary copy of this book through the Blog Review Program.

Please check my blog for more book reviews: https://delightinggrace.wordpress.com

The Quotable Round-Up #26

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Hello folks!!! Here are some awesome quotes I want to share this week. May this bring you encouragement to read books and to focus on Christ.

“To possess genuine assurance is to experience a bit of divine bliss this side of heaven. The greater our sense of assurance, the more we can savor that glory in this earthly life.” – John MacArthur, The Truth About the Lordship of Christ

“Christians are called to preach, teach, and believe the whole counsel of God. Any distortion of the character of God poisons the rest of our theology. The ultimate form of idolatry is humanism, which regards man as the measure of all things. Man is the primary concern, the central focus, the dominant motif of all forms of humanism. Its influence is so strong and pervasive that it seeks to infiltrate Christian theology at every point. Only by a rigorous attention and devotion to the biblical doctrine of God will we be able to keep from tasting and even swallowing this noxious brew.” –R. C. Sproul, What Is Reformed Theology?: Understanding the Basics

“Because God is infinite in his being and eternal, and we are finite and bound by both space and time, our knowledge of him is never comprehensive. We enjoy an apprehensive knowledge of God, but not a comprehensive knowledge.” –R. C. Sproul, What Is Reformed Theology?: Understanding the Basics

“Reformed theology is systematic. The science of systematic theology is so called because it attempts to understand doctrine in a coherent and unified manner. It is not the goal of systematic theology to impose on the Bible a system derived from a particular philosophy. Rather its goal is to discern the interrelatedness of the teachings of Scripture itself.” –R. C. Sproul, What Is Reformed Theology?: Understanding the Basics

“A church without theology or a theology without God are simply not options for the Christian faith. One can have religion without God or theology, but one cannot have Christianity without them.”  –R. C. Sproul, What Is Reformed Theology?: Understanding the Basics

“The believer who acquiesces in special revelation is now in a posture to respond properly to general revelation. In this regard the Christian should be the most diligent student of both special and natural revelation. Our theology should be informed by both the Bible and nature. The two come from the same revelatory source, God himself. The two revelations do not conflict; they reflect the harmony of God’s self-disclosures.” –R. C. Sproul, What Is Reformed Theology?: Understanding the Basics

“If we say that the Bible is a product of only human opinion and insight, we can still speak about biblical theology in the sense that the Bible contains human teaching about God, but we can no longer speak about biblical revelation. If God is the ultimate Author of the Bible, we can speak of both biblical revelation and biblical theology. If man is the ultimate author, then we are restricted to speaking about biblical theology or theologies. If that is the case, we could justly regard biblical theology as a subdivision of religion, as one aspect of human studies about God.” –R. C. Sproul, What Is Reformed Theology?: Understanding the Basics

Book Review: Everyday Church by Tim Chester and Steve Timmis

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This book is a sort of sequel to “Total Church” with the same authors. This is a sort of “the rubber meets the road” kind of book. Picking up this book you’ll dive immediately to the subject. Not that you need to get “Total Church” to understand this (which I haven’t read also) but as you can see this book can be categorized with those “church engaging the culture” books that are already out in the market. Yet this book even if you read similar stuff does have some great insights and some gems in it. This book uses 2 Peter as main text drawing some principles.

The book opens with a discussion of Christians are in the marginalized in society and culture. Along with that are other things to consider as a church reaches out in this culture were tackled in the first chapter. The rest of the chapters carry Chapter 1 to further emphasize the role of the church, the challenge and the response to a culture we once knew. This is a short book but straight to the point, engaging and practical. The book concludes with the challenge for Christians to reach out despite of how the world treats us, live and breathe the gospel every day, reinforce us through Scriptures who we are in the eyes of God and how to live beyond mediocre Christianity.

My verdict 3 out of 5.

Crossway has provided a complimentary copy of this book through the Blog Review Program.

The Quotable Round-Up #25

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Here are the freshest quotes for the week featuring John Murray’s book “Redemption: Accomplished and Applied”. Enjoy!

“When Christ is presented to lost men in the proclamation of the gospel, it is as Saviour he is presented, as one who ever continues to be the embodiment of the salvation he has once for all accomplished. It is not the possibility of salvation that is offered to lost men but the Saviour himself and therefore salvation full and perfect. There is no imperfection in the salvation offered and there is no restriction to its overture—it is full, free, and unrestricted.”
— John Murray, Redemption: Accomplished and Applied

“Regeneration is the act of God and of God alone. But faith is not the act of God; it is not God who believes in Christ for salvation, it is the sinner. It is by God’s grace that a person is able to believe but faith is an activity on the part of the person and of him alone. In faith we receive and rest upon Christ alone for salvation.”
— John Murray, Redemption: Accomplished and Applied

“The embrace of Christ in faith is the first evidence of regeneration and only thus may we know that we have been regenerated.”
— John Murray, Redemption: Accomplished and Applied

“No one can say in truth that Jesus is the Christ except by regeneration of the Spirit and that is one of the ways by which the Holy Spirit glorifies Christ.”
— John Murray, Redemption: Accomplished and Applied

“Regeneration is the beginning of all saving grace in us, and all saving grace in exercise on our part proceeds from the fountain of regeneration. We are not born again by faith or repentance or conversion; we repent and believe because we have been regenerated.”
— John Murray, Redemption: Accomplished and Applied

“For unless God by sovereign, operative grace had turned our enmity to love and our disbelief to faith we would never yield the response of faith and love.”
— John Murray, Redemption: Accomplished and Applied

“Regeneration is the beginning of inwardly operative saving grace.”
— John Murray, Redemption: Accomplished and Applied