Book Review: Carpe Diem Redeemed by Os Guinness

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Before you dig in with this review, I would like to invite you to read my favorite quotes from this book by clicking this link just in case you missed it.

Carpe Diem Redeemed is a book of kaleidoscopic convergence of different topics pertaining to time. From history, atheism, purpose, salvation, significance, truth to culture, wars, philosophy, anti-intellectualism, chronological snobbery, nostalgia, destiny all came together under one book and was handled with superb care by Guinness setting a path to the God of the Bible who has superior clarity of what it means of making much of our moment. Sure this is one endeavor that is monumental however Guinness gave us the lenses of an intellect and another is for the average Joe.

The Introduction is a bit intimidating because of the multiple quotes from prominent persons which has something to do book. Then again it serves as some appetizer of sort for the reader. It gives you the thought that whoever you are, time is essential to you. Another is that it lets you know that this small volume is filled to the brim of biblical insights on time.

As you step into the ever first chapter, you’ll find how old school Os Guinness in writing (and I think that’s why the book cover looks like something from the 80’s or 90’s cover design). The chapters are large even in this small book and the insights from Os feels like your reading an editorial.  There are lots of going on as he unravels his thoughts in the subject matter that are one point engaging then in another you’ll get overwhelm you’ll get lost along the way. In those places I suggest to keep on reading till you get back to the path. Also it will be beneficial if you’ll read this in a slow pace and consider re-reading if you miss out something from this book.

Don’t expect Os Guinness to throw bullet points about time management that easy. He did give some ways to redeem the moment but it’s sandwiched in between. Those takeaways are at “the eye of the storm” of the book, as Guinness unfolds what it really means for a Christian to seize the moment.

I like the way he incorporate his life with his family as Christians in China in this book. You won’t put down this book without being moved or into tears with his story. It’s a fascinating read as you near the end of this book.

Carpe Diem Redeemed is a short read but be prepare as Guinness shares his intellectual and biblical insights that will floor you. Redeeming the time never had this intellectually satisfying taste. So dig in and feast on this great book.

My verdict:

4.5 out of 5

(InterVarsity Press provided the digital copy for this review)

 

8 Favorite Quotes from the Book “Carpe Diem Redeemed” by Os Guinness

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Hello guys! I would really appreciate it if you’ll include a friend of mine in your prayers. Greg my conference buddy, is going through a trial with his father who will undergo surgery. Please uphold him and his father in their dark providence and may they focus on Christ as their ultimate comfort in this life.

Anyways, here’s some quotes from book by Os Guinness, Carpe Diem Redeemed, published by 10 of Inter Varsity Press. If you like these quotes, please get yourself a copy of this book by ordering at IVP.

“God’s providence overarches history and reins in human pretentions, but under providence, however small and insignificant we seem, we humans are significant agents for either good or ill. Thus those who respond to God’s call, who come to know God and walk with him, become entrepreneurial partners with him in advancing his purposes in the world. We are never more than junior partners, of course, but providence ensures that history has a purpose and a point.”

“Relevance is at the heart of the message of Jesus. The gospel is good news, indeed the best news ever. It addresses our human condition appropriately, pertinently, and effectively as nothing else has, does, or can—and in generation after generation, culture after culture, and life after life, all across the world and down through time. It is of course possible that Christians make the gospel irrelevant by shrinking or distorting it in one way or another. But in itself the good news of Jesus is utterly relevant, or it is not the good news it claims to be.”

“Under the twin truths of God’s sovereignty and human significance, time and history are going somewhere, and each of us is not only unique and significant in ourselves, but we have a unique and significant part to play in our own lives, in our own generation, and therefore in the overall sweep of history.”

“Providence is the ultimate check and balance, the final moral limit to human power.”

“Seizing the day or redeeming future time is rising to life within a powerful matrix of truths that sets out an entire way of life in which the ideal of carpe diem can come to its highest fruition. God calls us in the flux and flow of time and history, and the gift of being able to seize the day flowers from a way of life that weaves together three principles: “Walk before God,” “Read the signs of the times,” and “Serve God’s purpose in your generation.”

“A life of faith is the story of the truths Christians believe but are embodied in human form. Each such life adds its support to the voice of the Bible as the grand story of a thousand smaller stories of God’s breaking into the experience of human beings in real life.”

“Clarity of faith is essential, loyalty to truth is all-important, and truth claims must always be set out as cogently as possible. But the multilayered reality of truth comes into its own in the visible, audible, and tangible reality of a life lived by faith.”

“End” in the Bible is sometimes seen as finis, in the Latin sense of conclusion, full stop, period, or ending, but the Bible also sees “end” as telos, in the Greek sense of goal, purpose, culmination, or climax. Both “end” as conclusion and as climax and culmination are always at work in history, and as much so today as ever. We must remember both, appreciate how they are linked, and live our lives with a firm grasp of both truths.”

 

 

5 Ways of Finding Biblical Answers to Your Questions Online For Free

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What is the Trinity? Is Jesus God? What is God’s will to my life? Does water baptism essential to salvation? How do I reconcile God’s love with His justice? What does the Bible say about suicide?

These are some of the questions that puzzles people and as Christians needs to answers. So here’s a list of five resources where you can find biblical answers to those inquiries.

Just a disclaimer though. As much as these online resources provides answers, its better for a Christian to find answers for it first in prayers and searching it through the Scriptures. Also before going online, check it offline by seeking assistance to your pastor or elder.

Ask it in real time – This is a great resource I go to time and time again. Whether if it’s for my personal Bible time or just plain curious, Ask Ligonier is my go to website. With a simple tap to the chat icon, it’s as easy as chatting to a friend on FB Messenger. It’s 24 hours and 6 days a week, Ask Ligonier will help you find answers to your theological or biblical inquiries from their well equipped agents.

Listen to a podcast — With over 1,000 episodes, Ask Pastor John provides answers for theological and biblical questions. They even ask about John Piper’s hand gestures when preaching. Listeners are encourage to send their questions.

Go to Youtube – There are a few ministries channels on Youtube that offers question and answer videos that I would like to share t o you. First stop is Grace to You, which of course is a teaching ministry of John MacArthur. They have this short and full length Q and A sessions you might want to check out. They are so kind to provide a playlist for it for you convenience.

Next is from The Gospel Coalition, which post daily videos on Facebook and Youtube. With their vast author, theologians, preachers and speakers, you’ll find a variety of view point for your questions. They don’t have a specific playlist for it but with a simple digging you’ll find something worthwhile.

Lastly, a channel that you’ll find answers is Reformed Seminary. Since Youtube can be searched by using a hastag, #WisdomWednesday of Reformed Seminary.

Download a free app – We all know the GotQuestions.org is a go to websites for us looking for biblical response to our inquiries. But did you know it has an app? Yes an app that you can read offline, loaded with tons of question and answers. When it’s installed on your phone or tablet you can take it anywhere. It’s also available in different languages.

Grab a free e-book – Let’s end this post with something from Ligonier Ministries again.  Crucial Questions by R. C. Sproul is a eBook series focusing on important questions in the Christian life. And it’s free forever! Another good news about these booklets, Ligonier Ministries keeps on adding new stuff under this series from time to time. Go to their website and create an account to download these ebooks. If you have a Kindle app, you can get the series over Amazon Kindle Store. Either ways the ebooklets are free!

What websites or apps helped you find answers for those burning questions? Please comment down below.

 

 

Book Review: Richard Dawkins, C. S. Lewis and the Meaning of Life by Alister McGrath

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In Richard Dawkins, C. S. Lewis and the Meaning of Life,  McGrath brings out the two of the greatest thinkers of our time on the table and (objectively) scrutinize their beliefs focusing only on the meaning of life.  I love how McGarth presents these extraordinary gentlemen in this book. Both Oxford fellows (including the author), both had a landmark book and both experienced atheism and Christianity. This adds the level of thrill in diving in to this brief book. And I have to say, I got really hooked.

Richard Dawkins, C. S. Lewis and the Meaning of Life is not the usual apologetics book. It’s a short and accessible book for atheist, Christians or anyone who both wants to know Dawkins and Lewis in one sitting. It’s serves as a springboard for other bodies of work these two intellectual giants have dished out (or to books of McGarth on the topics). There are lots of superb books that have great treatment with these gentlemen but if you want a starting point, this is the book for you.

By reading this book, I think you have gotten to the core or the most important part of any book that discuss these authors and their view of life. Peak inside the minds of these brilliant thinkers and how their views influence the world.  Pick up this book and you’ll surely love it!

My verdict:

5 out of 5

(InterVarsity Press provided the digital copy for this review)

The Freebie Round-Up # 52

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Controversy spilled over a transgender woman who was not allowed by a janitress to enter a women’s bathroom. So news outlets picked it up and its all over media. Then the SOGIE Bill is on the spotlight again. Please pray for the us Christians who stands against this bill that will trample our religious and academic freedom.

Anyways, here’s a list of great freebies that are waiting to be downloaded. And if your new here to this post or you missed out other freebie round-ups, check the links to those post at the end of this article.

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Free audio teachings on “The Book of Romans” by C Michael Patton- Credo Courses is giving this digital audio download of this teaching for free. Make sure you have an account with Credo Courses (which is also free).

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FREE sample of “Contemplate” Bible Magazine- Get a free sample digital copy of Contemplate, the Holy Bible in magazine format with beautiful photographs.

FREE e-book “Sermons Upon the Eight Chapter of Romans” by Thomas Manton- Monergism has this superb streak of giving out free e-books this past weeks. So I have to pick out only one for this weeks freebie post.

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FREE live stream of Sing 2019 with free 20 songs download-  Dont miss this conference with awesome line up of speakers by signing up this live stream notification. Once signed up, you’ll receive 20 songs free.

FREE audiobook of  “Spending Ourselves in Christ” – As a “thank you’ for supporting Grange Press, they’re making their new audiobook for free download. To support this small press, please sign up with their email list.

FREE e-book “Love the Least (A Lot)” by Michael Spielman – From the founder of Abort73.com is this free ebook. If you want a physical copy, you have to shell some cash.

FREE e-book “The Wiersbe Bible Study Series: Jeremiah” – On this week’s David C. Cook’s free e-book is the Bible study series of Warren W. Wiersbe titled Jeremiah: Taking A Stand for the Truth. Get it while it’s still free.

By the way, to my Pinoy friends do you want to learn how to self-publish your book? Here’s a step by step video from Loida Bauto an AVM survivor and a PWD vlogger:

Do you want more freebies? Check out these past blog post:

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Freebie Round-Up #47

Freebie Round-Up #46

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8 Favorite Quotes From the Book “Richard Dawkins, C. S. Lewis and the Meaning of Life” by Alister McGrath

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During our open forum for our laymen and women fellowship with the theme, Passion for God, I had a chance to share something about reading that leads to pursuing God. I wrote it down and explained it for about 10 minutes. If youre curious on what I shared to our fellowship, I’ll put it live here as a post on this blog soon.

Anyways, here’s Alister McGrath’s latest book, Richard Dawkins, C. S. Lewis and the Meaning of Lifepublished by InterVarsity Press.  If you like these quotes, please get yourself a copy of this book by ordering at Amazon or InterVarsity Press. Stay tuned to the review of this book.

“Lewis thus invites his readers into the Christian way of seeing things and to explore how things look when seen from its standpoint – as if to say ‘Try seeing things this way!’ If world views or metanarratives can be compared to lenses, which of them brings things into sharpest focus? Clues, taken by themselves, prove nothing; their importance lies rather in their cumulative and contextual force.”

Dawkins attributes his loss of any religious faith to two factors. The first was his growing realization that ‘Darwin provided the magnificently powerful alternative to biological
design which we now know to be true.’ This is a recurrent theme in Dawkins’s later writings: Darwinism offers an ex­
planation of what is observed in the biological world that is superior to belief in a creator God. The second factor is his belief that there is an ‘elementary fallacy’ within any argument from design, in that ‘any god capable of designing the universe would have needed a fair bit of designing himself.’ Darwin’s idea of gradual complexification from a ‘primeval simplicity’ seemed to make a lot more sense to him.”

“Christianity possessed the literary form of a myth, which for Lewis meant a story with deep imaginative appeal, conveying a set of ideas. Yet there was
a critical difference between Nordic myths and the Christian myth: only the latter was true. Pagan myths represented an imperfect grasping towards the truth, a goal finally attained in Christianity. “

“Christians take the view that believing in God helps us make sense of the world, offering a larger framework or big picture into which fits what we observe and experience. Dawkins argues that this involves adding an unobserved and intrinsically complicated entity – God – to the inventory of the universe. Science is about keeping things as simple as pos-
sible – which is one reason why Dawkins prefers atheism to Christianity. It seems a simpler and neater idea. “

“For Lewis, belief in God was neither a distraction from life nor a spurious means of finding consolation. Discovering God was about discovering his own true identity and recalibrating his reason and imagination in the light of this new way of seeing himself and the world. God is neither an object within our universe nor a mere abstract philosophical idea.”

” To have faith in God is not primarily to
give intellectual assent to an idea about God but to step into a greater picture of our world and become part of it.”

“In terms of their intellectual precariousness, both atheism and Christianity reflect the epistemic limits of human beings, who show a tendency to want to believe more – whether that belief is religious or secular – than the evidence actually warrants.”

“Like many readers of The Selfish Gene I often find myself wondering whether Dawkins’s optimistic conclusion isn’t
actually contradicted and subverted by the arguments that precede it. In some ways his analysis echoes the ethos of the Enlightenment: once you have understood something, you can master it. But can we master ourselves in this way? What if our genetic inheritance affects our will, so that we can recognize the hidden influence of our genes, while then discovering that we cannot break free from their influence?”

8 Favorite Quotes From the Book “Essentials” by Lee McMunn

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Living with my in law who needs a dialysis twice a week, me and my wife need to adjust. I have a graveyard shift so my time in the morning is flexible. But I need to make much of those dialysis sessions. So I decided, since I’ll be taking my father in law two times a week (Tuesday and Friday) at the hospital for his 4 hour dialysis session, I might as well bring some digital “baon”. Aside from e-books, I’ll be listening to various podcast from Spotify. It’s a mix bag of Reformed theology, business, comics and kid lit. I want those 4 hours to count as I listen, enjoy and learn.

Anyways, here’s Lee McMunn’s book Essentialspublished by 10 of Those.  If you like these quotes, please get yourself a copy of this book by ordering at the 10 of Those website. Book review of this book is coming up.

“The Bible teaches that the God who is responsible for all the good and beautiful things, from the tiniest particle to the grandest planet, is a united family of three persons; the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.”

“The Bible says it’s because the God who made us is a relationship of three persons, and we have been created to live in a similar way. That’s why relationships are so important to us.”

“The reason God has the right to rule our lives is because he created us. We know from our everyday existence that those who make things, whether small or grand, have ownership rights over their creations. “

“Passionate commitment to God and his way is for our happiness. Living with God in charge is not drudgery, it is delightful.”

“Rejecting God spells disaster for our eternal future. Cosmic treason is expensive. “

“Forgiveness alone would have been amazing. But the God who is Father, Son and Holy Spirit offers us much more. As well as forgiveness, we are invited to enjoy a relationship with each member of the Trinity.”

“Obeying Jesus in a world where many people don’t inevitably brings Christians into conflict with competing ideas. Therefore, anyone who follows Jesus should expect turbulence.”

“Relationship with the Father is very personal, but it is never to be individualistic. Anyone who follows Jesus instantly has lots of siblings!”

Book Review: Struggle Against Porn by Benjamin Vrbicek

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Before picking up this book, you should be aware of the title.  It’s Struggle Against Porn. And as the author explains, this is a book for those men who set to fight this sexual sin. So for those who doesn’t want to commit to cut ties with pornography, this is not your book. However, if you are taking arms to clash with porn, Struggle Against Porn is a truly rewarding read.

Unpacking this book’s  message, Vrbicek uses Scripture after Scripture. With no statistics (actually he provided it on the later part of the book) and a few illustrations and stories, Struggle Against Porn holds on to the power of Scriptures alone to melt the infatuation with porn. Vrbicek believes that the Bible is the only one that can convince porn addicts to turn away from it and come to God. And as you read this book, you’ll feel that intensity that will shake your soul.

Having multiple (but short) chapters,  Vrbicek really sets out to open every angle of the issue and to turn every stone to  expose pornography by shedding the gospel light on to it. And what he did in this superb  book.

Struggle Against Porn is solid and straight edge arsenal for men who wages war against this seemingly undefeated foe.  No gimmicks and no quick fix. The diagnosis is painful. However, Vrbicek’s latest book is ready to side with every Christian men who wants victory over porn. This book is a must read and it will cut through this stubborn sin.

My verdict:

4.5 out of 5

Read quotes from the book by clicking this link.

Pinoy Preacher List #7

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Here we are on our seventh installment of this series. If you miss out the five other list, they’re provided at the end of this post.

Isidro Dadula – Pastor Boy shepherds Molino Grace Grace Church at Bacoor, Cavite. His sermons can be access on their church Youtube Channel.

Bob Amigo – At the heart of NCR is Higher Rock Christian Church. HRCC is known for the Higher Rock Conference which brings sought after conference speakers to the Christian Filipinos. HRCC is pastored by Bob Amigo. You can access his messeges from their church website.

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Jurem Ramos – Pastor Jurem U. Ramos is the Senior Pastor of Soli Deo Gloria Church, Davao City. Pastor Jurem is known for the radio program The Shepherd’s Voice which airs on 702 DZAS on the AM band. You can listen or watch to his sermons at their multi media ministry website.

If you have miss out the previous installments here are the links:

Pinoy Preacher List #1

Pinoy Preacher #2

Pinoy Preacher List #3

Pinoy Preacher List #4 

Pinoy Preacher List #5

Pinoy Preacher List #6

Would you like to help me grow this list? If you know pastors or preachers who are Calvinistic or Reformed and has sermons online, please do e-mail me at nitoymgonzales@gmail.com.

The Freebie Round-Up # 47

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Got caught up with that Facebook “post a book cover” challenge. It’s a great way to show (off ☺) the books you read and encourage others to pick up a book. Some of my friends arw doing it. However the some of my friends I tagged didn’t do it or post for 7 days, still for me its a fun way to promote literacy and get to know what youre friends are reading.

Anyways, here’s a list of great freebies that are waiting to be downloaded. And if your new here to this post or you missed out other freebie round-ups, check the links to those post at the end of this article.

FREE e-book “History of the Reformation”- Get ready to study the rich history of the Reformers with the free e-book by J. H. Merle D’Aubigne on various digital formats.

FREE e-books download– Reformed Baptist Publication has a couple of sample of their products that are downloadable for free. Authors include Richard Barcellos, Philip Schaaf and Walter J. Chantry.

FREE “Digital Puritan” digest– Want some selected and modernized Puritan works on Kindle format. Check out this free annual digest that breaks free from PDF and has some great features.

FREE “The Blessed Way” devotional– Subscribe to Christianity Today’s newletter and get this free 30 day devotional written by leading Christian women today (including some Reformed authors which is why I included it in this list).

FREE study materials for Westminster Confession  – Pilgrim Covenant Church offers some resources that will aid you in studying the Westminster Confessions for free.

FREE digital publications – Women of the ELCA has 3 free publications you can sign up including their new newsletter Interchange. 

FREE e-book “12 Ways You Phone Is Changing You ” by Tony Reinke– I’m fresh off from Reinke’s latest book and I think you’ll love this one now its free (for a limited time!). Take a short survey and you’ll get this e-book.

Do you want more freebies? Check out these past blog post:

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