The Digital Round-Up # 23

myptv2kHey folks! Prepare for another round of the “The Digital Round-Up” as we serve you interesting articles, freebies and videos. And if you’re enjoying this stuff, please do tell us on the comment section. So buckle up and enjoy the thrill.

FREE “CHANGED: #oncegay stories” – is an ebook  compilation of 40 people who left homosexuality and found happiness and fulfillment outside LGBTQ circle.

Wigs and Wisdom – Its not just a fashion statement by men in the 18th century but a sign of something we ought to be. Are we willing to “wear” it again in this 21st century?

Let their books raise the questions – an excellent article that lets the secular book  raise important inquires on eternal matters.

Double the Trouble if You Ignore the Context – in interpreting the Bible, we need to remember the importance of context.

How to Remember What You Read – David Qaoud gives us 4 ways to ensure we get the most out of reading.

18 most recognizable book covers and fun facts about them – iconic books that has memorable covers.

3 Reasons you’re more productive in coffee shops – some of my blog post are done in Figaro , and in some ways this article is true.

 

 

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The Quotable Round-Up #89

f11jjqtHowdy! It’s a great day to sit down, chill and sip your favorite drink! And while at it, add some awesomeness in your day by reading our latest collection of quotes.  This time we are featuring fresh quotes from the books “Know the Creeds and Councils” by Justin Holcomb and “The Potter’s Freedom” by James R. White. And if you got stoked with these quotes, please get the books at your nearest Christian bookstore or on Amazon.

“A catechism is a book or document giving a brief summary of the basic principles of Christianity in Q&A form. Catechisms represent the practical, “on-the-ground” application of the main teaching agreed upon at church councils and expressed through creeds and confessions. The word “catechism” comes from the Greek word katechein, which means “to teach” or “to instruct.” Catechisms are basic outlines of the teachings of the Christian faith, set forth in a way that those unfamiliar with doctrine can easily understand.” — Justin Holcomb

“Because creeds are bare-bones structures (the outlines of the sketch), it makes sense that the earliest statements of the church are creeds, while later statements of particular denominations are confessions. Creeds distinguish orthodoxy from heresy (or Christian faith from non-Christian faith). Confessions distinguish denominational distinctives (or one type of Christian faith from another type of Christian faith.” — Justin Holcomb

“Creeds aren’t dogmas that are imposed on Scripture but are themselves drawn from the Bible and provide a touchstone to the faith for Christians of all times and places.”– Justin Holcomb

“Christians of the past were no less concerned with being faithful to God than we are, and they sought to fit together all that Scripture has to say about the mysteries of Christianity — the incarnation, the Trinity, predestination, and more — with all the intellectual power of their times. To ignore these insights is to attempt to reinvent the wheel, and to risk reinventing it badly.”
— Justin S. Holcomb

“Grace is a wonderful word that speaks of God’s freedom and God’s power. I cannot earn grace, merit grace, purchase grace, or force grace. It is free or it is not grace. Yet the grace of God that brings His elect safely into eternal rest is not merely some persuasive power that may or may not accomplish the ends for which God intends it. Grace is no servant of man, dependent upon the creature for its success. No, saving grace is God’s own power. Saved, and kept, by grace. That is the Christian’s hope.” –James R. White

“Arminians teach that God sends his grace to “persuade” men to believe, but they deny that God can actually raise a man to spiritual life without his assistance and agreement. They deny that there is an elect people, based solely on the choice of God, to whom God will infallibly apply the benefits of Christ’s atonement. Grace is limited to being effective on the “willing,” i.e., it is submitted to the power and will of man and his decisions. It becomes a mere “wooing” force. The Reformed Christian who has sought to share the gospel of grace with Roman Catholics recognizes that this is the same view of grace found in the Roman communion, and it is deeply troubling to find it expressed within what is called Protestantism.” –James R. White

“The question is, Who, ultimately, is responsible for my union with Jesus Christ? God is both the one who is the origin and source of salvation in general, and the one who powerfully, purposefully, and perfectly draws His elect people into blessed union with Jesus Christ.” –James R. White

 

5 Things I Love About YouVersion Bible App

7lusaz81Recently, my wife bought an i-Phone and she starts downloading apps. She asked me what Bible app should she download and use. Without hesitation I said YouVersion app. I love it and I think millions of users of this great Bible app will agree with me with these 5 reasons (And oh before I forgot it’s their 10 year anniversary and here’s how we can celebrate with the app):

Multiple Bible versions and Translations. Can you imagine a Bible app that has tons of Bible versions and translations free to download? Well YouVersion has it. With multiple versions and translation you can compare and understand any given passages. Also you can listen to the audio of the Bible.

Tracks and encourages you in your Bible reading. Keep on track with the progress of your Bible reading time by its built-in tracker. It gives you the streak and weeks of how many times you read your Bible. You also receive a “Verse of the Day” in this great app.

Add a friend or interact with someone on the app.  It’s like Facebook but with Bible verse or devotional plan progress as status. You can like and comment on you friends status. You can invite others from Facebook to check out this app and enjoy God’s Word.

Devotional plans and Video.There a many devotional plans you can use in YouVersion. You can choose a plan base on a passage of Scripture, topic you want to explore or if going through something your life. Videos are also awesome.  You can check some gospel presentation and some clips from The Bible Project.

Share the Bible over social media. Like any other Bible app, you can share God’s Word over Facebook or Instagram. What makes it cool is that you can post the verse with an image so it can be eye catching to your friends.

There you have it the 5 things I love about YouVersion app. I hope you check the app over your App Store or Google Play. God bless as you delight on God’s Word.

The Digital Round-Up # 22

myptv2kHey folks! Prepare for another round of the “The Digital Round-Up” as we serve you interesting articles, freebies and videos. And if you’re enjoying this stuff, please do tell us on the comment section. So buckle up and enjoy the thrill.

FREE “Psalm 139” by Charles Spurgeon – an excerpt from the Treasury of David also by Spurgeon,  its send the message to readers of God’s intent to overthrow the power of darkness and shows the sovereign God over evil.

Heidelberg Catechism in Tagalog – I never knew that this beloved catechism has a Tagalog version. I read it and it pierced my heart.

Smart phones and Reading Habits – Make sure on what we are scrolling on a screen is healthy to our minds and not just scrolling us to our deaths.

Two extremes to be avoided in preaching –  Not gonna spoil to you what are the two extremes but this is a great article.

25 Things God said to the church – The church through out the centuries shows her flaws and all however God still loves the church and here’s what He said about it.

Top Five Logical Fallacies in the Social Justice Movement – Knowing these false logical arguments we can see the factual than the emotional zeal of the movement.

Seeking Revelation in Bourdain’s Parts Unknown –  The beauty of diversity Anthony Bourdain discovered are appetizers for something more in God’s plan of redemption.

 

 

The Quotable Round-Up #88

f11jjqtHowdy! It’s a great day to sit down, chill and sip your favorite drink! And while at it, add some awesomeness in your day by reading our latest collection of quotes.  This time we are featuring fresh quotes from the book “Know the Creeds and Councils” by Justin Holcomb. And if you got stoked with these quotes, please get the book at your nearest Christian bookstore or on Amazon.

“We are born in sin. We are naturally enemies of God and lovers of evil. We needed to be made alive (regenerated) so that we could even have faith in Christ. All of this is grace that we don’t deserve. Because we didn’t earn or attain this grace, we cannot lose it. God graciously preserves us and keeps us. When we are faithless toward him, he is still faithful.”

“We can stand before God only by his grace as he mercifully attributes to us the righteousness of Jesus Christ and attributes to him the consequences of our sins, which were judged on the cross. Declaring sinners righteous based on the work of Christ is called the doctrine of “imputed righteousness” — God declares a believer to be good, and even though the believer is not good in reality, this declaration is all that matters.”

“In Augustine’s scheme, grace is not a divine nudge but a power that frees people to love God for who he really is. It is this God-empowered love that destroys the rule of sin and bestows the ability to choose to sin or to choose not to sin (posse non peccare — “able not to sin”). However, until this grace is given, people cannot choose goodness. Though we might be in the grip of an evil power that we do not understand, we are still responsible for spending our time and energy on the things that we do wrong.”

“The Christian faith is not only a matter of the heart, an exercise in sentimentality, for “Christian faith is a matter of the mind as well as the heart and the will, and as thinking persons we must give intellectual expression to our faith.” Still it does not demand blind acceptance to empty propositions. It is concerned with the direction of our souls.”

The Definition of Chalcedon described Christ’s descent as a true incarnation of the Logos, the Second Person of the Trinity, while denying that a man was converted into God or that God was converted into a man. There was no confusion or absorption between the divine nature and the human nature of Christ; the two remained distinct. Similarly, the incarnation was not merely a divine indwelling of a human nor a connection between two persons. Instead, Chalcedon asserted that there was a real union between the divine and human natures that existed in one personal life: the life of Jesus of Nazareth, who was the eternal Logos.”

“If Christianity had agreed with Arius that Jesus could be a lesser god — if it had failed to defend monotheism, if it had fallen into the trench of professing three unrelated deities — it may have dissolved into the religion of Rome and its pantheons of false gods. If the early Christians had lost their nerve and conceded the “lesser divinity” of Jesus, whatever that might mean, then the work of God in Christ for our salvation would have been rendered meaningless. No mere man, nor half god, could possibly intervene to save fallen and sinful humanity, let alone restore all of creation. Only the Creator can enter creation to fix its brokenness and redeem its original, latent purpose.”

“The Nicene Creed is perhaps the most famous and influential creed in the history of the church, because it settled the question of how Christians can worship one God and also claim that this God is three persons. It was the first creed to obtain universal authority in the church, and it improved the language of the Apostles’ Creed by including more specific statements about the divinity of Christ and the Holy Spirit.”

Book Review: Something More by Theron St. John

xkak8tvThere are books that rely on heavy arguments and controversial issues to make a case for the need of the gospel. It can be on the issue of abortion, same sex marriage or the prosperity gospel. Sometimes it is tackled pages upon pages that is grueling to read. Theron St. John’s Something More diverts from those books and dishes out answers to ones purpose in life.

Something More is a relevant and fresh book geared for young adults who are in pursuit of their dreams. Caught up in their goals in life they neglect ultimate purpose that is found in God. Theron St. John step by step, real life stories after stories, in every chapter with laser focus unravels the reality of finding that purpose and eventually joy. It is a straight trail with the end goal that is to present the need of salvation. A brief book that hits the heart of the millenials to stop and consider that there is something more.

St. John wrote Something More with an evangelistic tone that doesn’t cram the Bible on someones throat, bog down someone with theological jargon or too preachy. Neither does this book succumbed to a water down gospel. On the contrary it does still points to the gospel and God. Something More presented the gospel in a way that  half of it feels like a book and half of it is like a friendly conversation.   I’m totally hands down on how St. John wrote it and looking forward for more of this kind of stuff in future books he will release.

If you want to give a book to someone who is in college or just starting to work then this book is highly recommended. If you want a book that is not hard hitting but still gives a spark of hope to people who are burden by their pursuit of their dreams this book is for them. Something More caters to new believers also who are connecting their personal pursuit with what God wants them to have.

4.5 out of 5

Buy the book at Lulu.com

Accessible Apologetics: Delighting Grace Interviews Jason Petersen

sjvengxI have read tons of apologetic books. From age of the earth to atheism, KJV onlyism to Roman Catholicism and now from evidential to presuppositional apologetics, I have read materials that covers basically those topics. But nothing has helped me look at apologetics in a more dissected view to see how it really works. I have been bogged by a jungle of terms and jargons that I didn’t see apologetics in a more understandable way. After picking up the book, Apologetics Made Simple, it dawned to me that I can view and understand  apologetics  in 5 important components.  Recently Delighting Grace connected to Jason Petersen, author of Apologetics Made Simple, and we talked about Christian handling apologetics, the presuppositional approach and his book  Apologetics Made Simple.

Delighting Grace: What are the reasons why Christians distance themselves when we talk about apologetics?

Jason Petersen: By the Holy Spirit, we know that faith is a gift from God (Ephesians 2:8). I think those who distance themselves mean well, and that they believe that the defense of the Christian faith is incompatible with faith itself. If we look at situations in the Bible that involve the defense of the faith such as Acts 17 and what the Bible says concerning defending the faith in 1 Peter 3:15, we see that the Bible does call us to defend our faith, but we are to do so in faith. We ought to exhibit the character of Yeshua when we defend the faith.

Delighting Grace: How about lack of civility? Can it hinder apologetics? What do you do when you face this kind of situation?

Jason Petersen: We do not have the power to frustrate God’s will, but we are accountable for how we behave. When someone is rude to us, we should not reciprocate. If someone will not listen when we proclaim the truth to them, we are to walk away (Proverbs 14:7, Matthew 10:14).

 

Delighting Grace: When the word apologetics comes up, we quickly picture it as Christians talking to unbelievers. But how about in church settings when we have talk it to our brethren? Is there a difference in approach?

Jason Petersen: We ought to treat everyone with the same love and respect of Yeshua. With another believer, you both should already agree that the Bible is the foundation for thought. After all, there is no need to convince someone who already believes the Bible is the Word of God that the Bible is the Word of God. The only difference would be the starting point of the person we are talking to.

Delighting Grace: Any personal story that you can share with us that you have applied apologetics?

Jason Petersen: There are many, but an example of the most common type of stories I have involve dealing with unbelievers that seem to think that Science reigns supreme over all. I recently had a discussion with an atheist named Kyle Rutherford, who says he is a scientist (I can’t remember in what field), and I explained to him all of the philosophical problems that involve claiming that the empirical method can allow us to know which propositions are true and which are not. He did not offer any response to my arguments and instead attempted to ridicule me. I departed from him because the Bible teaches us to leave the presence of a fool (Proverbs 14:7).

Delighting Grace: As I have point out previously, your e-mail address reveals you’re a presuppositional apologist. So for the readers can you tell us what’s it all about and how it differs from evidential apologetics?

Jason Petersen: Although I am a presuppositional apologist, I do believe that evidential apologetics does have its place and I have seen it bear fruit. God can use any form of apologetic for his glory so I am not dogmatic concerning how we do apologetics. I will, however, say that I think it is important that we approach our apologetic with a systematic mindset. If we are going to defend the truth of the Bible, we better darn sure be able to show how we know that it is true. This is why I am a presuppositionalist, and in particular, a Clarkian presuppositionalist.

It is hard to define evidential apologetics because there are various approaches and degrees of approaches. Some evidential apologists believe that we can show that the Bible is true apart from using the Bible. While I do think we can point to many things outside of the Bible that are consistent with the truth of the Bible, I do reject the notion that the truth of the Bible can be demonstrated apart from special revelation. It is one thing to point to things that are consistent with the truth of the Bible, but it is another to demonstrate it.

As a Clarkian presuppositionalist, I start with an axiom, “The Bible is the Word of God.” From there, I can, using the verses in the Bible, show that the Bible is true because it is inspired by God and God does not lie (2 Timothy 3:16, Numbers 23:19, Titus 1:2). This may seem strange to some, and perhaps some may be so inclined to reject such a notion as circular reasoning. I would argue that because my axiom is not demonstrable, the line of reasoning is linear, not circular. As a Clarkian presuppositionalist, I believe the only way to know that the Bible is true is if the Holy Spirit dwells within you (Romans 8:16). I also believe that the use of evidence is permissible, but what it can accomplish, as it would be with trying to prove any other position with evidence, is limited. This is a topic that I plan to hash out more in my upcoming book, ‘Clarkian Apologetics.’

Delighting Grace: How do you respond to people who say apologetics is impractical to help someone’s Christian walk?

Jason Petersen: Seeing how Yeshua, the Prophets, and the Apostles all defended the faith, I would probably sarcastically remark that none of them must have gotten the memo.

Delighting Grace: Your book, Apologetics Made Simple is absolutely great. Can you tell us about that book?

Jason Petersen: Thank you. I am glad that you enjoyed it. Ever since I started doing Apologetics, when I would dialogue with unbelievers, I could tell that something was not quite right with the discussion. It seemed like the arguments against the faith of the God of Abraham, Issac, and Jacob were all rooted in semantics and linguistic gymnastics. Over time, I was able to more precisely point out where the faults were. In 2017, I decided to publish a book that would point out five critical keys to dealing with the tricks that those who oppose the faith that was given to us by God in the days of old that would make any apologetic method unstoppable. The five keys are as follows: dogmatism, systemization, language (and propositional truth), accuracy, and faith. This book is short and only takes about an hour to an hour and a half to read. I wanted the keys shared to be easily digested even by laypeople. Both laypeople and seminary professors have said great things about this book.

Delighting Grace: Can you tell us the process of writing that book?

Jason Petersen: I did an outline of the five keys that I wanted to share, and then I expounded on those keys in every chapter. The way I write is pretty simple. Some will make a thorough outline while others will just write and “let it flow.” I do a combination of both. I do a basic outline, I let it flow, and then I read over it and determine if any changes need to be made or if I need to add to or subtract from what I’ve written. That is the approach that I took with this book.

Delighting Grace: Will you be writing books like that soon? I mean its short enough to understand the subject of apologetics and won’t eat up your time.

Jason Petersen: Apologetics Made Simple, will likely be the shortest book on apologetics that I will ever write. The books on apologetics that I will write in the future will be significantly more detailed. I won’t rule out another book that is as short as this one, but it is unlikely that I will make another Apologetics book that is like Apologetics Made Simple.

Delighting Grace: So Jason please invite our readers to get a copy of your book Apologetics Made Simple and also check out other stuff from you.

Jason Petersen: I would encourage anyone who is interested in apologetics to buy my book, Apologetics Made Simple. I am also an entrepreneur that has been blessed with financial success by God. I wrote another book called, Building Wealth Made Simple, that gives an outline on my philosophy of personal finance and investing. My author website is jasonlpetersen.com.

 

The Digital Round- Up (Freebie Edition #6)

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Booyah! Freebie fanatics unite! Here we are again for another freebie edition of “The Digital Round-Up”. So gather up and delete some space on your gadgets and make way for these free stuff that will help you walk with God.

Free “Eternal Prespectives” Magazine – From the ministry of prolific author Randy Alcorn, you can read the latest updates of his ministry and some great articles. You can subscribe to it by e-mail or postal mail.

Free “The Doctrine of Grace” lecture series – Collected mp3 podcast of B.R.I.D.G.E. Ministries featuring Jeff Durbin, John Frame, John Samson, James White, Tim Trumper and Joel Beeke.

Free audio sermons of Mark Dever for his latest book – Here are the audio compilation turn into Dever’s new books are The Message of the Old Testament: Promises Made and The Message of the New Testament: Promises Kept.

Free “Directions for Daily Communion with God” by Matthew Henry – The famed Bible commentator wrote a bunch of books too. Here’s one that you’ll surely love.

Free 10 Steps to Becoming a Writer –  free ebook from Write Practice.

Free audio of “21 Servants of Sovereign Joy” by John Piper – an audio mp3 compilation of biographies that is now in book format.

Free “Essential Reading on Leadership” – from the folks of SBTS, here’s another great book for you to enjoy.

The Quotable Round-Up #87

tpn6bjcHowdy! It’s a great day to sit down, chill and sip your favorite drink! And while at it, add some awesomeness in your day by reading our latest collection of quotes.  This time we are featuring fresh quotes from the book “The Potter’s Freedom” by James R. White. And if you got stoked with these quotes, please get the book at your nearest Christian bookstore or on Amazon.

“The religions of men, Roman Catholicism, and Arminianism, all share one thing in common: the deep desire to maintain the ability of man to control the work of God in salvation and always have the “final say.” The blunt assertion of Christ refutes this error. The fact is, outside of the divine action of drawing the elect to Christ none would come to Him. It is beyond the capacity of the fallen man.”

“All men would be left in the hopeless position of “unable to come” unless God acts, and He does by drawing men unto Christ. Outside of this divine enablement no man can come to Christ. No man can “will” to come to Christ outside of this divine drawing.”

“Why is one man raised to eternal life and another left to eternal destruction? The Scriptures offer an answer that is satisfying to the believer, but insufficient for the person unwilling to trust in God’s goodness. What is the basis of God’s act of predestination? It is “according to the kind intention of His will.” Each word is important. It is His will, not our will. And remember, this is speaking not of some general plan to “save” so that it is God who “initiates” but man who actuates. This is the specific predestination of individuals to sonship. The basis of this specific decree is God’s will. No mention is found of man’s will.”

“Synergism is the hallmark of man’s religions: monergism the mark of the biblical gospel.”

“When the Scriptures say that men are spiritually dead, we are not to understand this to mean that they are spiritually inactive. Men are active in their rebellion, active in their suppression of the truth, active in their sin. Instead, spiritual death refers to alienation from God, the destruction of the positive, active desire to do what is right in God’s sight, and most importantly, the ability to do what is good and holy.”

“Reformed theologians insist that for one to be free as a creature then one must have first and foremost a sovereign Creator. God is the free and sovereign Creator and acts freely in that realm that is His: we are mere creatures, never sovereign, never autonomous (i.e., without law, without a superior authority), but responsible within the realm of our createdness.”

“The Christian heart is glad to confess, “Salvation is of the Lord.” All of it. In completeness. In perfection. The God who decrees all things saves perfectly. Salvation is a divine act, a divine work. It is centered upon God, not upon man. It is God’s glory, not man’s, that is at stake. The God-centeredness of the gospel is what makes the biblical teaching so fundamentally different than all the religions of men.”

The Quotable Round-Up #86

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Howdy! It’s a great day to sit down, chill and sip your favorite drink! And while at it, add some awesomeness in your day by reading our latest collection of quotes.  This time we are featuring fresh quotes from the book “Good News: The Gospel of Jesus Christ” by John F. MacArthur Jr. And if you got stoked with these quotes, please get the book at your nearest Christian bookstore or on Amazon.

“The message of the gospel is the message of reconciliation. The alienated sinner can be reconciled to God. That’s what we pray for, it’s what we teach, and it’s why we live. Some even die for it. It is the unparalleled message of reconciliation with God through the work of Christ. We have been given the ministry of reconciliation.”

“The only reason God has kept us in the world is for the work of evangelism. Yes, we’re saved to worship, but God tolerates our imperfect worship on this side of eternity for the sake of adding to His kingdom. We’re also saved to be sanctified, but God tolerates our inadequate, incomplete sanctification to keep us here to evangelize. He endures all our consistent errors and failures because He has work for us here that we cannot accomplish in heaven.”

“The notion that God is a loving and compassionate Savior contradicts the core doctrines of the world’s religions. If you study the history of religion, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a savior god among them. When men and demons design gods, that’s simply not how they design them. Demonic religious systems don’t concoct deities anything like the God of the Bible. Instead, they generally range from indifferent to severely hostile.”

“We need to understand that reconciliation does not start with the sinner, or some cosmic cry that God responds to. We don’t have to ask God to accept the sinner—we don’t have to coax Him into it through pressure or praise. He is not reluctant to save. Reconciliation begins with God—it’s woven into His glorious nature.”

“We don’t sit in judgment of God’s judgment. The question is not, why did God send bears out of the woods to destroy a group of boys who yelled “bald head” at a prophet (2 Kings 2:23–24)? The question is not, why did the ground open up and swallow people whole for violating Old Testament law (Num. 16)? The question is not, why did God displace and destroy the idolatrous Canaanites? The question is not, why did God destroy the globe and preserve only Noah and his family? Those questions are easy to answer: the wages of sin—no matter how great or small the sin might seem to us—is always death (Rom. 6:23).”

“True reconciliation requires God’s forgiveness. The only way reconciliation can occur is if the offended party is willing to forgive and remove the barrier sin creates. The sinner cannot reconcile himself to God. Only the Lord can effect reconciliation by choosing not to count our trespasses against us.”

“We ought to cling to the vital doctrine of God’s sovereignty. But don’t ever let your view of sovereignty overwhelm or obscure the fact that sinners have a responsibility to respond to God—and we have a responsibility to beg them to do so. God accomplishes His reconciling work through—not in spite of—the obedience of faith from those He calls to be reconciled.”