The Quotable Round-Up #110

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It’s been a thrilling ride being part of a book launching team. I’m on my second book launch and it’s amazing to connect with the author. Not only that I get to meet some like minded folks and enjoy the perks of belong to one. But one awesome thing about it is that I can read the book first before any other readers can. So if you want to join one keep your eyes peeled to your favorite author as he or she rolls out his latest releases.

As part of the Humble Calvinism book launch team, enjoy this special treat from Delighting Grace. It’s a collection of quotes from the book authored by Jeff Medders.  Pre-order the book on Amazon or add it to your wish list by clicking this link: https://amzn.to/2LfH2CV

“A head-only grip on unconditional election makes pride and predestination into frenemies. We know pride is a sinister enemy of Christians, but when it comes to disagreements over the doctrines of grace, somehow we welcome pride in as our friend and ally. We need to end our friendship with pride. Frenemies no more.”

“Predestination is the backstory of your faith in Christ. Ephesians 1 reminds us of God’s end goal of election: the praise of his grace.”

Any version of Calvinism that lacks zeal for the lost is a counterfeit. Real Calvinism runs on a Great Commission passion for the glory of God and the joy of all people in Christ the Lord.”

“Believers will not—cannot!—“un-believe.” Will there be doubts? Certainly. Will we sin? Yes. Will there be periods of backsliding into sin and a belittling of God’s grace? Probably. But prodigals eventually come home. Sins that have already been covered by the blood of Jesus cannot be uncovered.”

“Discipleship is about denying ourselves as our own Lord and Savior, picking up our cross of death to self, and following Jesus as Master. And the proof is in perseverance; a continued discipleship with Christ, as new creations in Christ, is God’s will for his saints.”

 

 

The Quotable Round-Up #108

sbj9yhrDecluttering expert, Marie Kondo struck a nerve to some bookworms because she suggest that we should minimized our books into just 30.  Whoa! As you know, we book readers are book collectors too and we like to display it on a bookshelf for everyone to see. But to downsize you collection to 30 books, we’ll that’s heresy. LOL. Well, I think she has a point. Let me suggest it this way. We can shrink it to 30 books to the ones you usually use and are important in studying the Scripture. The rest should be kept in a box tuck in an attic and if like what she said “doesn’t spark you joy” any longer, you can donate it to your church or public library. Better yet, give it to a friend in need.

Anyways, here’s some quotes from the book by J. I. Packer, Finishing Our Course With Joy. Order the book on Amazon by clicking this link.

“As seniors’ powers of body, memory, and creativity grow less, so their conscious focus on their hope of glory should grow sharper and their meditations on it grow more joyful and sustained. As this happens, passion to continue being of use to God and his people, in holiness, love, and what Scriptures conceives as neighborliness, should and will intensify, to the very end.”

“We humans are hopers by nature. Hope motivates, energizes, and drives us. It is natural to us to look ahead and long for any good things that we foresee. That is how God made us. It was always in his plan that we, his embodied rational creatures, should live our lives in this world looking forward to, and preparing for, something even better than we have known already.”

“Maintaining zeal Godward as our bodies wear out is the special discipline to which we aging Christians are called.”

“…to think of Christian retirees as exempt from the twin tasks of learning and leading, just because they do not inhabit the world of wage and salary earning any longer, and for aging Christians to think of themselves in this way, as if they have no more to do now than have fun, is worldliness in a strikingly intense and, be it said, strikingly foolish form.”

“Lifelong learning, both of the truths by which Christians are to live and of the way to live by them—also of how these things are taught in Scripture and how they are misstated, misunderstood, and misapplied in the modern world—is every Christian’s calling.”

“The Bible’s view is that aging, under God and by grace, will bring wisdom, that is, an enlarged capacity for discerning, choosing, and encouraging.”

The Quotable Round-Up #106

vb6a6bkSaw a few articles that pits physical copy against digital copy of the book. Some lean to the physical ones and others cheers for the digital ones. If you ask me I go for both. There lots of advantages on both formats and also some disadvantages. I enjoy both formats and I think that is all that matters.

Anyways, here’s some quotes from the upcoming book by Dan DeWitt Sunny Side Up: The Breakfast Conversation That Could Change Your Life. Release date is on February 1 but you can pre-order the book by clicking this link.

“Orthodoxy may sound like a painfully expensive dental procedure, but it really means having proper beliefs  about God. Orthodoxy is where every person must begin in their relationship with God. That’s not to say people have to pass a test about the Bible in order to become a Christian. Thankfully, God isn’t looking for academic qualifications or good grades. But in order to become a follower of Jesus, you have to have a right understanding of who Jesus is and the forgiveness he offers..”

“It’s dangerously possible to grow in our knowledge of God without growing in our love for God. We can accumulate a lot of knowledge while our hearts remain far from him.”

“Loving God isn’t a flowers-and-chocolates kind of love. Neither is it cheering him on from the sidelines or singing his latest hit. God wants your heart—and he wants all of it.”

“Anyone who has begun a relationship with God understands the powerful impulse to give God our whole lives, our whole heart. But it’s an impulse that has to be nurtured and fed in order to grow. There’s a whole lot in life that threatens our love for God..”

“No matter who you are, or where you are, you can get in on the invitation to love God. God desires and demands our full affection. That’s because he is the greatest good. And his invitation to love him is for our greatest good. Loving God is what’s best for us.”

“Humility is where all learning really begins. What will it take for you to start learning the lessons God wants to teach you?”

“We need to think about how we prioritize our relationship with Jesus. Do we place Jesus above all earthly relationships? Does he even make it on to our short list? If you have to disappoint someone, would Jesus be the top person you would do anything to avoid disappointing? Maybe, as you read these words, Jesus is calling you to make him first in your life today.”

5 Reasons Why Your Sermon is Boring (and 5 Ways to Fix It)

wzOd8BWOf course, God can still use a boring sermon to bless His people.  However that’s not an excuse not to improve and use God given resources available to the pastor. I would like to share (based on my experience) five reasons why sermons are boring and tips to tweak it.

You use the same old illustrations over and over again – We understand that you use the same jokes or illustrations to make us easily grasp what you want us to understand. You want what is already familiar to us. At first we like those stories. However in time those illustrations breeds contempt. We became tired of listening to that part. We already know what part of the sermons were you will insert that. Some of us maybe rolling our eyes and saying in our mind “Goodness that worn out joke is coming…”.  Some of us might even joke about those same old illustrations. And some might feel embarrassed.

Fix it: Its time to find some great stories that will explain points in your sermon. Try reading books (Christian and non Christian), watching TED-talks videos on Youtube, check out Christian blogs or listen to sermons from other preachers. Another tip is what Dr. Nathan Busenitz had suggested is to use Church History. It’s gives informative and timeless  touch to your message. Another thing is, if its possible why not go straight to the point.

You preach the same old topic over and over again- We understand that when you emphasize a certain topic and repeat it over and over, you want to church to really get it.  Of course we want to be constantly reminded of something from the Word of God. However, if that’s often and there is no other topic to be preach, then we have a problem. It might be also that you stick to your forte and scared to try other topics. Whatever the reasons are you need to grasp the heart of church.

Fix it: Ask your preaching team or key laymen on what to preach. Let your other preachers in your church preach. In that way it might reveal what are the spiritual needs of the church.  Consult other pastors about what message matters to your church. Brainstorm in a place other than the church. And one last thing, don’t forget that the Holy Spirit will work even if you preached the topic once.

You talk too much of yourself- It’s one thing to put your personal anecdotes as a good illustration for the message, but when you become the sermon itself, eyes will roll and boredom will strike. In some cases, pulpits can be use to elevate self, academic achievements, virtue signalling and even solicit sympathy.

Fixt it: Let us remind ourselves that preaching is all about God and not you. You are responsible to point us to God through your message. If you’re trying to lift up your name in the pulpit, your glorifying yourself and not God. God didn’t called you to do that. He gave you that privilege to be His mouth piece.

Your sermon is too long – I’m not against long sermons. What I’m against are the unnecessary things included in the message that made it long. Beating around the bush, too much illustrations, personal stories that drift to a rabbit hole, random announcements etc., are some of the reasons the sermon had an unwarranted length.

Fix it:  Why not go straight to the point? Why preach 1-2 hours that will leave your listeners dire of boredom when you can preach a 30-45 minute sermon that will bless them? Maybe its time to sharpen the saw. Sometimes we as preachers should learn to adjust to the listeners not the other way around. Flexibility is the key. Of course, this is not a small step to compromising your message but by learning to be flexible were becoming good preachers in the process. Listen what Spurgeon has to say about shortening your long message:

“Brevity is a virtue within the reach of all of us; do not let us lose the opportunity of gaining the credit which it brings. If you ask me how you may shorten your sermons, I should say, study them better. Spend more time in the study that you may need less in the pulpit. We are generally longest when we have least to say.”

Your listener already heard enough talk even before the sermon begin –  Sometimes the one thing that drives boredom is not in the sermon itself but the talk you had before you start the preaching. You already consumed the listeners time and attention. What is left is disinterested folks who just wants you to get over your message. You already filled their ears with announcements, updates and adventures of your recent trips. Sad, sensitive and discouraging talks will leave them in the slump. Little did you know you long talk stole your sermon’s thunder.

Fix it: Place those important announcements and updates at the end of the service. Set a meeting specially if the issue are for members only. Print out some flyers containing those announcements so your member can read it at home. If its not that serious or demanding you can share it through Facebook group chat.

Pastors, we love and support you. We love you enough to say that their is something wrong with your sermon. We want to be biblically saturated and nothing else. And we know you want it also. However, their something that hinders that goal and that is your sermon is boring. So with all due respect listen to your flock. They want to bring out the best from you.

 

The Freebie Round-Up #26

uVqF9h8Happy New Year! This is the time of the year that we are in restart mode. It’s as if all is brand new and what is left is a clean slate. So why not do some goal setting for 2019? Gear up for a surprise that is waiting around the corner. Who knows what you’ll find. But if you want to boost your spiritual growth and maturity, let these freebies help you. So dive in and check out these free stuff.

 FREE e-book “Bible Study Blitz”  – Written by LaRosa M. Johnson, the who dishes out Bible study tips videos at BibleStudy.Tips, this freebie will help you have that breakthrough in your Bible study struggle.

FREE e-book “Social Justice: How Good Intentions Undermine Justice and Gospel” by E. Calvin Beisner – This is one helpful free booklet on what really the Bible is saying about social justice. Beisner answers the common claims of the “progressives”  that pushes “force grace”.

FREE “Clarion” The Canadian Reformed Magazine – You can download for free all the magazines issues from the present to way back 1973! In every issue it has articles, book reviews and news for you to enjoy.

FREE music, leadsheets, chords from Kenwood Music –  Kenwood Baptist Church (lead by Jim Hamilton) offers two albums for free listening and free downloads of chord charts and lead sheets for churches who wants to sing these songs.

FREE e-book “Clerihews” from Theolatte – Dan DeWitt offers his free e-book just by signing up to his awesome blog.

FREE audiobook “Morning and Evening” by Charles Spurgeon –  This a great way to start the year by picking up this great devotional from the Christian Audio. To get this freebie, create a free account first.

FREE e-book “Awe” by Paul David Tripp – This is one awesome book you shouldn’t miss. It’s worth the signing up and downloading the app to read this free e-book from FaithLife E-Books. Check my quote post from the book by clicking here and here.

 

Debunking A Myth: Delighting Grace Interviews Zigfred Diaz

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Long held claims of believers should be questioned and verified. Left unchallenged, it will eventually breed legalism and anti-intellectualism that will bring reproach to the church . Pastors and preachers our duty is to do research for facts to back up those claims. Pastor Zigfred Diaz did just that and he shared what he uncovered about Baptist Successionism. Baptist successionism, perpetuity and landmarkism are claims by some (but not all) Baptist specifically by Independent Fundamental Baptist (IFB) or Bible Baptist (which they are called here in the Philippines).  DG connected with him and he answered some of our inquiries about this controversial subject.

Delighting Grace: Please tell us who you are and your background.

Zigfred Diaz: Actually I wear several hats at the same time so to speak. But among the things I do is that I pastor a Southern Baptist Church (Reformed), I am also a lawyer, entrepreneur, senior manager, financial planner, investments specialist.  My full profile can be seen at my personal blog at: http://www.zdiaz.com/about/

Delighting Grace: Whats the reason why you wrote something about Baptist successionism?

Zigfred Diaz: I grew up in an Independent Baptist Church. We were taught Baptist Successionism since I was a kid. For a long time I’vebelieved it to be true. However as I matured both in my spiritual life and in my thinking there were some things about it that really did not make any sense logically nor does it seemed to be backed by the Scriptures and even the evidence. I soon read materials on the matter but was not able to really dig deeper. I wanted to investigate the matter further but it seems that time has not permitted me. Although I pastor a church, I do feel that my particular calling is to equip the saints through teaching and writing as I consider both as God’s gift to me wherein I can be a more effective minster to the body of Christ.

In order to be more effective in that one, I decided to enroll at Veritas International University, School of Apologetics where I am currently pursuing my Master’s degree in Divinity major in Christian Apologetics. The areas of theological studies that I am very interested on is Apologetics, church history, textual criticism and biblical archeology. I took the subject  “Church History” last summer. We were required to write a 25 page paper on our chosen church history subject. Since the subject on Baptist Successionism piqued my interest, I decided to do research and write about Baptist it.

I actually chose that particular topic for three reasons. First, because most church history books are focused on the main story of Christianity with Baptist church history being only some sort of a sub-topic. There are books and articles written on it, but I feel that more research can be  and should be done on the subject. Secondly because I wanted to counter the wrong teachings of Baptist Successionism, Perpetuity and Landmarkism since it has caused so much damage to the body of Christ and to Baptist church history as it has produced a group of elitist Baptist who think they are right when in truth is that what they hold on to is based on false claims. Not only that, I also want to counter this wrong teaching because it has produced a lot of Baptist Christians who do not even know how to think and evaluate critically and logically this matter and to do research to see if what is being claimed is backed by the evidence.

Delighting Grace: What do think are the reasons why some of our Baptist brethren hold on this teaching?

Zigfred Diaz: Mainly because of a lot of those who hold on to this is misinformed and because of other factors which I will discuss later. This teaching is very popular among independent Baptist, missionary Baptist, primitive Baptist and some Southern Baptist. As I mentioned I come from an independent Baptist church. The ironic thing about most Independent Baptist is that they tell you to bring your Bible to church to check if what your pastor is saying is true. But what’s funny is that if you start to question things, you either get told to shut up or you will branded as a “rebel”, “backslider”, “liberal” and all the other beautiful adjectives that could possibly be labeled to you. :-D. I am sad to say that a lot of these churches seem to promote some kind of anti-intellectualism.

So in a lot of these churches when people start to question Baptist Successionism, they get criticized for questioning it. So they will just back down and will be forced to swallow whatever they had been fed. Few of us who could not take it anymore eventually transferred to other Baptist groups. However I know a lot who chose to remain on the inside but they do have sincere questions and doubt about certain issues like Baptist Successionism. However I think they would not want to bail out of the group considering that they already have friends and family there.  It’s hard to uproot somebody growing up in the culture. So in this sense I understand why some people chose to remain in there and continue to somehow “swallow” the wrong things taught to them when in reality they have some doubt and objections about it. It is indeed hard to be ostracized by the majority in these groups who believe in Baptist Successionism.

Delighting Grace: What are the reactions of people when they hear or read your paper regarding the Trail of Blood?

Zigfred Diaz:  The Trail of Blood is the most popular work on Baptist Successionism hence when I wrote a paper against it, it really caused quite a stir. Well thank God I haven’t encountered any violent reactions that has led to physical harm :-D. But I’ve been called the beautiful adjectives that I mentioned.  We Filipinos are of course none confrontational and when I met those from my former denomination they of course did not mention their objections to what I have written. However I know that a lot of them have expressed displeasure because of what I have written.  I know this because I am administrator of a Facebook group named “Baptist Theological Forum” which has currently more than 2,000 members from different Baptist groups mainly from the Philippines.

A lot of my friends and acquaintances from my previous church and denomination are there and they have definitely read what I have wrote as I posted it there. Some of them do tell me that they find my paper interesting. The greatest blessing I receive is that that there are those from my former denomination that tell me that I am right. Those from independent Baptist churches who I do not know personally and I have engaged with in the forum, do fight tooth and nail for Baptist Successionism. I do take the time to answer them and show them what is wrong with it and how the Trail of Blood is based on false claims, half truths and even outright lies.

Delighting Grace: Read the paper you have written. Its short and its spot on. Will you consider publishing this paper?

Zigfred Diaz: Thanks. Yes I am considering publishing it. However most seminaries and organizations only accept publication from people on the inside. So I have yet to find a seminary or organization that accepts publications from people outside their organization. If there is one do let me know and I will publish it in that journal. Our seminary still does not have a journal but if it will have one in the future, I will publish it there.

Delighting Grace: Please tell us the process in writing Battling Baptist Bogus Beliefs.

Zigfred Diaz: First, I asked my professor if I can write about the subject then he gave me approval and asked me to submit a list of references that I will be using. Next I read books, articles, write ups etc. on the subject from both sides and carefully evaluated the arguments and the evidences of both. Afterwards I went to the Baptist Theological Forum and other Theological chat groups and asked other pastors regarding the subject. That was really very helpful because part three of my paper would not have been completed without me doing such. For quite some time,  I was asking a lot of Baptist who claims to have an unbroken lineage of their church to the New Testament church to give me a copy of such lineage.  To my surprise nobody wanted to give it to me not even some persons and groups who claimed they have it. So that really fueled my confidence that such lineage either does not exist or that they were unsure of its accuracy.

Finally somebody in the Baptist Theological Forum gave me their church lineage and another pastor, a personal friend of mine was kind enough to give me their church lineage. I actually used those two lineages in my paper and  I back check the references given if they were true. Well for those who have not read my paper you will have to find out the answer :-D. Actually the part I liked most in my paper is that last part where I debunked the church lineages that was given to me. I liked that part because I had fun searching for the references and checking if what is being said there is true or not. It is really fun and exhilarating to uncover the truth.

Delighting Grace: Wow. How does a Christian avoid falling to errors like Landmarkism?

Zigfred Diaz: Christians must not just swallow immediately whatever is being taught to them. God gave us brains to think. Not to use it properly is a grave insult to Him. We must critically evaluate properly anything that is thrown at us. We must think logically and check if whatever is being claimed is backed by the evidence. Not only that we must learn the tools on how to do to scholarly research and evaluate truth claims. Each discipline has its own tools to do proper research. Historians have the historical method, Anthropologist have ethnography and other social science tools, Archeology has archeological principles and methods, Textual Criticism has rules and even pastors must follow the basic rules of exegesis to properly interpret Scriptures ! 

Above all there is the basic principles of logic. This is not “worldly” knowledge as some Baptist groups would want us to think. The source of all this knowledge is God. Further in this century, information is freely and readily available. When I did research in my paper to back check the references in the church lineage that was given to me, I mostly searched for those references online. They are all freely available in the internet ! We must learn to utilize these resources properly. All of these are gifts from God.

I teach critical thinking at a Christian High School and I wish that this subject is also taught in Bible schools. I am very much dismayed and flabbergasted that even pastors share fake news in Facebook! If these pastors believe in fake news which is just so easy to check online,surely they will have a hard time discerning fake news from the past ! The Trail of Blood and the claims of Baptist Successionism, perpetuity and Landmarksim are fake news from the past. Christians especially pastors should learn to be discerning. We are God’s people and we have the Holy Spirit with us who will teach us all things. We should be the most lucid and  discerning thinkers.

Delighting Grace:  Where do you go from here pastor? What are you’re plans in the future concerning this issue?

Zigfred Diaz: Actually I plan to write a book someday with the same title. (I like the title.When I write papers, I usually take time to whip up a fancy title) It will be a series of books discussing Baptist bogus beliefs. I have two topics now for this series of books. The first volume will deal with Baptist Successionism and the second volume will be on the issue of KJV Onlyism, also an issue close to my heart as a lot of my brethren in my previous denomination still hold on to this wrong belief.  (I have written a paper on the logical fallacies of KJV Onlyism) I will think of more topic as time goes by.

By the way, books countering Baptist Successionism are now a bit dated and historians dealing with the subject are aging or has gone home with the Lord. For example Dr. Leon McBeth who wrote “The Baptist Heritage: Four Centuries of Baptist Witness” published in 1986 was one of the most comprehensive and accurate work on Baptist Church History. In his book he discussed the issue of Baptist Successionism perpetuity and landmarkism. He died last 2013. McBeth was distinguished professor of Church History  for 45 years at Southwest Baptist Theological Seminary and has served as chairman of the Texas Baptist Historical Committee Baptist Convention, and as president of the Southern Baptist Historical Society. He also experienced being a pastor in several churches. McBeth was considered the foremost Baptist historian in the 20th century.

Former Baptist Pastor, renowned church historian and seminary professor,  Dr. James Edward McGoldrick author of “Baptist Successionism: A Crucial Question in Baptist History” is now in his senior years. His book, published in 1999 is one of the main reference for my paper and is the probably the only book to date that counters point by point and directly the work of J.M Caroll’s Trail of Blood.

These great scholars used by God needs to have somebody pick up where the left off. We need more scholars researching the subject so that  false claims will be countered and that the true Baptist Church History will be known by the generations to come.

Delighting Grace: Thank you pastor for your time. Please invite our readers to check out and download your free paper Battling Baptist Bogus Beliefs.

Zigfred Diaz: Sure! I was planning to put it up in Academia but if I do that, the journals won’t allow me to publish with them. So I am a bit reluctant. That is why I have only one published worked in Academia. I have a lot of papers that I haven’t put up in Academia dealing with several subjects from  Anthropology, Archeology and Theology.

Anyway, you can all download it in this link. Please feel free to share it without asking for my permission. The truth needs to come out on this issue freely!

 

The Quotable Round-Up #102

t4jqaugFresh from a recent seminar about biblical counseling, me and my wife got copies of two books, Excelling in Relationships and Climbing Out of Depression, each in English and Tagalog version. So my wife reads the English and mine is the Tagalog. Hope we finish and further enhance what we have learned in the seminary. But for now I’ll be posting some quotes from the Tagalog translation of David Meengs book Climbing Out of Depression. 

“Mahalagang maunawaan natin na kung paano tayo mag-isip, magsalita o kumilos ay may koneksyon sa ating kalagayang espirituwal. Ang mga espirituwal na mga alalahanin ay nangangailangan ng espirituwal na solusyon! Ang katotohanan lamang ng Diyos ang magpapalaya sa atin sapagkat ipapakita nito ang tunay na kondisyon ng ating isipan at puso. Ito lamang ang makapagbibigay ng tahasang tugon sa pinaka ugat ng problema, nang walang tinatago.”

“Sang-ayon ang Diyos na tayo nga ay nasasaktan ng ibang tao! Ngunit ang ating maling tugon o reaksyon sa pananakit sa atin ang pinakaproblema, at depende iyan kung ano ang kalagayan ng puso natin. Ang karunungan mula sa Diyos ay nagtuturo na kailangang higit nating alamin kung paano ang tamang tugon sa mga nanakit sa atin. Ang karunungang ito ay taliwas sa itinuturo ng sikolohiya!”

“Ang pag-asa ayon sa Biblia ay naiiba talaga sa pag-asa sa paningin ng mundo bilang isang” kahilingan” lamang. Ang pag-asa ayon sa Biblia ay ang pananampalataya na may lakas ng loob na nag-aabang sa Diyos na tuparin Niya ang kanyang mga pangako na nakasandig sa katangian Niya; hindi nakadepende sa tao, sa mga bagay na pag-aari o sa mataas o mahirap na kalagayan sa buhay.”

“Ang mga taong mayroon Kristo sa kanilang mga puso, ang tanging may pag-asa at maaring magbago at mabuhay sa paraan ng Diyos! Bakit? Sapagkat ang kapangyarihan lamang ni Kristo ang may kakayahang sirain ang kapangyarihan ni Satanas sa puso ng mananampalataya.”

“Ang taong na kay Kristo na ay nailigtas mula sa kapangyarihan at sa parusa ng kasalanan! Iyon ang pag-asa! Matapos ang pagbabago ng puso, ang saloobin, mga salita at mga gawa ay magkakaroon din ng pagbabago pati na ang mga damdamin o nararamdaman ng isang tao ay magkakaroon na rin ng pagbabago.”

“Kapag nakatago sa ating mga puso ang pag-asa ng Diyos, magagawa nating sariwain sa ala-ala ang mga ito sa oras ng ating pangangailangan. Ang Banal na Espiritu bilang ating pinakamahusay na Tagapayo at Gabay ay nagpatotoo sa ating espiritu upang tulungan tayo. Kasabay ng pag-asa sa ating mga puso, ay magiging handa tayo sa pagbibigay rin ng pag-asa sa iba!”

“Ang katapatan ng Diyos ay labis na kahanga-hanga. Ang banal na katapatan ng Diyos ay ganap na nangangalaga sa isang mananampalataya. Ang ating Diyos ay lubos na nakatuon sa mga minamahal Niya.”

The Quotable Round-Up #100

og0ooopWow! It’s our 100th Qoutable Round-Up! What’s special about this post is that today is the  501 st year of the Reformation. Yay! Another is the book we are quoting is from Tim Keller’s new book The Prodigal Prophet. Very controversial author and book, but its a pretty good read. So here’s seven of them and next time I’ll post another batch:

“Because of his self-substitution, we can have life. To the degree you grasp what Jesus did for you, and rest in the salvation he bought for you, to that degree this pattern of substitutionary sacrifice and love will be reproduced in your relationships. And you will become the kind of person the world desperately need.”

“Many today reject the doctrine of substitutionary atonement. They believe it depicts a loving Jesus who extracts forgiveness from a wrathful, reluctant God. Some have called this “divine child abuse.” But that insults Jesus. It demotes him into some kind of lesser being, and it is a denial of one of the cardinal doctrines of the Bible and Christianity, namely that there is only one God who exists in three persons, Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. The three persons are not three Gods, but one. So the name “Jesus” means “God saves,” and his name “Immanuel” (Matthew 1:21–23) means “God with us.” Paul says “that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting people’s sins against them” (2 Corinthians 5:19).”

“There’s love at the heart of our storms. If you turn to God through faith in Christ, he won’t let you sink. Why not? Because the only storm that can really destroy—the storm of divine justice and judgment on sin and evil—will never come upon you.”

“If you want to understand your own behavior, you must understand that all sin against God is grounded in a refusal to believe that God is more dedicated to our good, and more aware of what that is, than we are. We distrust God because we assume he is not truly for us, that if we give him complete control, we will be miserable.”

“We were made in “the image of God” (Genesis 1:26–27). There can be no image without an original of which the image is a reflection. “To be in the image” means that human beings were not created to stand alone. We must get our significance and security from something of ultimate value outside us. To be created in God’s image means we must live for the true God or we will have to make something else God and orbit our lives around that.”

“We think that if we are religiously observant, virtuous, and good, then we’ve paid our dues, as it were. Now God can’t just ask anything of us—he owes us. He is obligated to answer our prayers and bless us. This is not moving toward him in grateful joy, glad surrender, and love, but is instead a way of controlling God and, as a result, keeping him at arm’s length.”

“Someone might object that the world has no right to rebuke the church, but there is biblical warrant for doing exactly that. In Jesus’s Sermon on the Mount he said that the world would see the good deeds of believers and glorify God (Matthew 5:16). The world will not see who our Lord is if we do not live as we ought. In the words of one book we are “The Church Before the Watching World.” We deserve the critique of the world if the church does not exhibit visible love in practical deeds.”

The Quotable Round-Up #99

jza5tccHeads up guys! Time for some 7 awesome quotes from a Christian book. This time we shall enjoy quotes from “Advance!” by Tim Challies. If you were blessed by this booklet, please consider getting it on Amazon or at your nearest bookstore! Grace and Peace!

“The Jesus of the three years of public ministry was formed during the 30 years of private obscurity. The 10 percent of his life that was carefully recorded cannot be separated from the 90 percent of his life that was not.”

“The number one priority for young Christians is to advance in character. Life is not over at 30 but just beginning. The teens and 20s are not the time to live a whole life but to prepare for a whole life. In these years, young Christians need to prepare themselves for the rest of life by laying a foundation of godly character that will sustain them for the many years to come.”

“Today, we hear of the importance of following our hearts, of being true to ourselves, of living according to our own standards. The Bible calls us to the exact opposite, to follow God’s heart, to be true to him, and to live according to his standards. Self-approval is meaningless and deadly if it comes at the expense of God’s approval.”

“As a young Christian, you will have many opportunities to serve God by serving his people. Take them! Enjoy them! Make the most of them! Begin even now to use your gifts, talents, time, energy, and enthusiasm for the good of others and the glory of God.”

“The best use of these years is not to stack up accomplishments for God but to joyfully pursue God through godly character. Yet as I call for young Christians to focus more on character than accomplishment, I certainly do not wish to advocate apathy. This is not a call for low expectations, but for expectations that are rightly focused and properly prioritized.”

“You can prepare by learning Scripture and theology, listening carefully to every sermon every Sunday, being consistent in your personal devotions, and reading good books. God can use every bit of wisdom you have. The fact is, God cannot work with what you do not have, and these years are ideal for preparing yourself to be used by him. Make this a time of preparation.”

“Your teens and 20s will be put to the best and highest use if you make them a time of sanctification. Even when you are a teen or young adult, you can make bold steps in identifying and overcoming sin and equally bold steps in embracing righteousness.”

 

 

The Digital Round-Up # 25

From its long hiatus the original Digital Round-Up is back.  Fresh and relevant content for you to read and be edified.

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FREE “Apostasy from the Gospel” by John Owens– A latest free offering from Monergism.

50 John MacArthur Quotes – We know that John MacArthur has been on the spotlight because of his views on social justice. But thats another story. Here’s 50 quotes from  Lolo Johnny from various topics.

The Case for FB Theologians -You might find them all over Facebook and sometimes creating theological debates on groups. However, they can do good service for the church and God. Check out this interesting article from an FB friend.

*In case you missed these : 5 Christian Podcast You Should Be Listening Right Now, 7 Awesome Ways to Learn Church History Online for Free, 7 Short But Excellent Christian Books I Have Read, 5 Important Things to Do Before Starting to Read A Book, 3 Essential Reasons to Re-Read Your Favorite Book. 

10 Signs the Christian Authors You’re Following Are (Subtly) Teaching Unbiblical Ideas – Natasha Crain really hit the nail on this article. We as Christians are book lovers however our favorite writers may be adding some unbiblical stuff over their books. Here’s 10 signs to know it.

Why Should I Tell Others About Christ When My Life Sucks –  Two valid reasons why we should. Great article from Credo House.

Better Than I Deserve – A much better reply to “How are you?”, its a biblical response that points out the Christian life.

*In case you missed these: Collecting the Past: Delighting Grace Interviews Caleb of Log College Press,  Accessible Apologetics: Delighting Grace Interviews Jason L. Petersen, Squad Goals: Delighting Grace Interviews Theron St. John, Tested by Time: Delighting Grace Interviews Dr. Isabelo Magalit.

How Do I Choose Good Books and Grow My Library? – Excellent advice from a prolific writer and book lover, John Piper. Not only does he gives us tips but recommends what books we should get.

6 Small Tweaks for Better Church Photography – For those who are in charge of taking pictures on church events, try these awesome tips to level up your church photography skills.

Stop Looking to the Bible for Fortune-Cookie Wisdom from Crossway on Vimeo.