(Interview) Norton Hall Band on Hymns

Photo from Youtube

What did your church sang this Lord’s Day? Did it lift both your soul to worship and your voice to praise the goodness of Christ? Does it prepare your spirit for the weekly servings of God’s Word through the sermon? Does it convey words that you can’t express on how to be thankful for God’s providence? Does it bring you to tears knowing the truth of God through the lyrics of the song? I hope and pray that it’s a blessing to you as you sang either a contemporary worship song or hymns.

The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (SBTS) has this group called Norton Hall Band that plays a fresh take on hymns. They have a new album, Still Our Refuge which is the third album they released this year. I reach out with Evan Sams, guitarist of Norton Halls Band to talk about hymns, their band and their new album.

For those who are not familiar with hymns, can you define what a hymn is?

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Comicbook Review: Word for Word Bible Comic: The Gospel of Matthew (Simon Amadeus Pillario)

Summary: The Gospel of Matthew tells the life of Jesus Christ and how He is the promised Messiah to the Jewish audience the gospel writer and apostle Matthew, intended it to. So you’ll read from time to time references from the Old Testament to support what Matthew wants his readers to know. As for the comic this is a literally the Gospel of Matthew in comicbook form using the NIV. Nothing added or taken out. In fact it has a map and additional articles (with Pillario’s artwork and real images) at the back including a gospel presentation.

Cover Art: Like what I have said, Matthew’s intent target in writing this book are the Jewish people. So it’s evident that you’ll find some a bit of Jewishness on the cover (the candlesticks and scroll found in the synagogues). I like how Pillario place it behind Jesus creating a halo.

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(Interview) Jerrel Pilarta on Rap Music and Doctrines of Grace

When you hear the word “rap”, what comes to your mind? Probably you’ll think about popular rappers like Francis M. or Gloc 9. You might also think of the message of their songs that you hear on the radio like nationalism, peace and unity.

But do you know there is a Christian artist who raps about the gospel? In fact, he raps about the Doctrines of Grace or Calvinism in his latest EP. I connected with Jerrel Pilarta, an indie gospel rap artist and we talk about Calvinism, rap music and his new release titled TULIP.

How did you came to know Christ?

I grew up in a Christian household, so ever since bata pa ako lagi ko ng naririnig ang Gospel. Pero for me, I believe last 2016 ko lang na fully grasp ang Gospel at natanggap ng buong puso. Nung na realize ko na kahit sobrang makasalan ako, papatawarin pa rin ako ni Jesus if I will repent and accept Him as my Lord and Savior. Dun nag-sink in sakin ang ibig sabihin ng grace.

Who introduced you to the doctrine of grace?

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(Interview) Context on Living Out the Faith During the Pandemic

How do bands strive through this pandemic? How did COVID19 affected their music? More importantly, how does God work to a band to bring the gospel message to this world? I reach out to the metal band, Context and asked these questions, about their music and their new album.

Please tell us about yourselves and how you got to know Christ?


We are the band, Context. Each of us came to know Christ in different ways. Kyle grew up in a Christian home by the grace of God. In college, he was challenged to live out his own faith and to take what he learned from his parents and put it into practice. Jam heard the Gospel from Ezekiel 36 while in high school at a local church plant. A few years after Jam had listened to the Gospel, he began a Bible study with a group of men through the Gospel of John. Chow heard the Gospel in John 1 and responded in faith.

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Book Review: “Charitable Writing”(Richard Hughes Gibson and James E. Beitler III)

Finally, I have finished this great book on writing and now I want to share not just quotes from it but my impression of this volume. It’s took me a few months before I finish this due to the fact that I have to give way to other books that is short so I can have something to put on my blog. But as I lay aside this book and the parts I already read, the content still is stuck in my mind all throughout those time that’s why I was so eager to pick it up and finish it.

The introduction to Charitable Writing is of course essential but its a bit long. However, once you get out of the woods and it will be a smooth and enjoyable ride. Its a long read so expect it to be grueling but interesting journey.

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8 Favorite Quotes from the Book “Charitable Writing”(Richard Hughes Gibson and James E. Beitler III)

Here are my favorite quotes from the book, Charitable Writing by Richard Hughes Gibson and James E. Beitler III, published by Intervasity Press. If you want to support the authors, you can purchase the book by following this link.

“…writing is a profoundly social endeavor, whether one is writing at a table,surrounded by friends or in private.”

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Comicbook Review: Balsamus: The Lost Lamb & Chapter 1: The Watchers

Welcome to another comicbook review and we will dive on two Balsamus books from Brazilain artist and writer Karolyne Rocha and Brainy Pixel. Both books are short having 12 and 16 pages respectively, that’s why we will review them in one post.

Cover Art: The two heroes (?) of Balsamus graces both issues, one having a bust portrait and the second issue the full body. Although it doesn’t give away the story or adventure they’re in but by just looking at it the drawing, it’s definitely manga. It’s not manga inspired, it 100% manga. Once you go to each issues, you’ll admire Rocha’s story. The black and white interiors, the vibe and Rocha’s treatment of the characters are legit manga. Line this comic with what Viz Media or Tokyopop are dishing out, you’ll never notice the difference. Plus the aesthetic of having dents on the cover making the comic look like old adds the awesomeness.

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Comicbook Review: Tenet’s Tales #1: Trouble Maker

Summary: Tenet comes face to face with a demon plaguing a farming family. How can he defeat the monster and give hope to this family that is beyond what he can do? Brace yourself as Brannon Hollingsworth and the rest of the Tenet’s Tales creative team opens the spiritual realm with this Hellboy meets X-Files inspired Christian comic.

Cover Art: The cover is dope! The artwork, logos, layout and letterings are stunning. The issue title and the logos are place in a vertical gray bar kinda reminds me of what you see on vintage horror comics covers. As for the comicbook title, it’s refreshing to see that it’s not on the usual place . Its at the left corner of the book which allows you to appreciate the cover art. It’s similar to the current trends of comicbook covers we see on mainstream and popular indie comic company. The actual cover art striking as if the charaters is inviting you to come to their world, if you dare! Now imagine having a physical copy of this book and staring at the cover for a few moment. I enjoyed savoring the cover.

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8 Favorite Quotes from the Book “Both And” (Ross Cunningham)

Guys, head over Driven By The Gospel website and check out my freshly translated article from Desiring God, written by David Mathis.

Now here are my favorite quote from the book Both And by Ross Cunningham published by Christian Focus. If you want to support the author, get a copy of this book by following this link.

“To rest only on one truth, at the expense of the other, leads to an impoverished view of God.”

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