The Digital Round-Up # 18

q5fmhucHello there! Here’s “The Digital Round-Up” to give you some of my favorite freebies, articles and everything in between. What do you think of it? Eclectic? Weird? Interesting? I just want to know. So please, please, please do me a favor and post your comments about this post at the comment section. Thank you and God bless!

Free “Reflection’s on Prophecy” Vance Havner – From the late preacher’s newspaper write ups on prophecy, collected in this volume.

All Five Points of Calvinism in John Chapter 10 – Here’s doctrine of grace in a nutshell in just one chapter. Short but great read.

4 Big Heresies Still Alive in the Church – Dont call it a comeback but these obsolete beliefs are always prevalent in the church. All we have to do is know them and combat them with the Word of God.

16 Things You Can do this Week to Get Unstuck in Your Sermon Prep – Let Lane Sebring lays some awesome tips to get up and finish your message for Sunday.

Toys in the Temple: Worldly Recreations and the Lord’s Day – drawing from the Puritan minds, here’s a biblical approach on why we should skip recreations during Sunday.

Preachers, Offend People on Sunday – What is the most offensive point in your sermon? The gospel of course! J. A. Medders list down the reasons why the gospel is offensive.

How the Superheroes of Literature can Save you from Grammar Nazis – No this not about Superman or comics, its about those classic authors of the past and how their masterpiece can help you defeat the Grammar Nazis.

 

 

 

 

Rooted on Theology: Delighting Grace Interviews Brandon Smith

The word “theology” sometimes drives us to shudder. We know it’s essential but we find it too complex or too boring to discuss. However, we won’t fully know who God is and His way if we don’t sound theology.  Delighting Grace recently reach out to Brandon Smith, author of “Rooted” and talked about theology, his latest book and a new podcast:

Delighting Grace: Hello pastor! How important is theology?

Brandon Smith: Theology is at the center of the Christian life. Theology is about God, the Bible teaches theology, the gospel is a theological message, and the Christian life reflects God theologically. In other words, all of life is about theology.

Theology just means “words about God.” So when we talk about God, we are doing theology. Everyone is a theologian–it just depends on whether you’re a good or bad theologian.

Delighting Grace: What are some reasons why people tend to sway away from theology?

Brandon Smith:  People often think theology is a professional sport or an academic discipline. There is an academic form of theology that’s extremely important, but that doesn’t mean that theology is only for academics (or even pastors). When we say, “God is in control” or “Jesus is Lord,” you’re speaking and believing theology. We shouldn’t be afraid of theology because if you’re a Christian, you’re a theological person.

Delighting Grace: Well said pastor. We believers should not be scared of theology. In your calling, how do theology shapes you as a pastor?

Brandon Smith: Pastors and Christian leaders must know theology better than anyone else. As says, we will be held accountable. False teachers are specifically called out in Scripture. As a pastor or leader, it’s your job to teach sound theology. There should be a difference between you and the Mormon bishop down the street.

So, to answer your question more directly, theology has always helped me be a good pastor and leader. It’s difficult to counsel someone who’s hurting when you don’t know how to tell them the truth about God’s love and mercy and grace, and about how all things work together for good. But remember, theology should shape us all this way. It’s not just the pastor’s job to counsel others with sound truth.

Delighting Grace:  If a pastor wants to teach theology in a church, what advice can you give to them if that’s their first time to do it?

Brandon Smith: Don’t take it too seriously, as if your sermons need to become seminary lectures. Theology is serious business, but every sermon has theology in it. It’s your job not to merely teach theological lessons, but to show people how those beautiful truths matter for everyday life.

 

Delighting Grace:  Wow great advice. You wrote a book titled “Rooted” which according to the book, it’s a primer. So why write a primer when you can write a whole book on theology?

Brandon Smith: There are plenty of 1,000-page theology books in the world. I’m thankful for them, but most people won’t read them. We wanted to write a short, accessible book that anyone could read. Part of why I think people stay away from theology is that they feel intimidated by the size and language of theology books. No one should be intimidated by Rooted.

Delighting Grace:  How’s the process in writing a book? Also how is like J. A. Medders as a co-author?

Brandon Smith:  Writing a book is hard work. It’s not always or even often fun. Rooted took several years of editing and changing and reimagining. I enjoy the process, but most of the time writing the book was late nights with a cup of coffee, forcing myself to get words on the page.

(Jeff) made writing Rooted fun and exciting. I had already written much of the book, but he brought the words to life. He’s one of the most creative and powerful writers out there, and people will keep learning that as he writes more. He’s a writing freight train and I’m just along for the ride.

Delighting Grace:  Your book is awesome pastor. Read it and I learn a lot. So please invite them to check out “Rooted”.  You have a new podcast you and I also enjoy?

Brandon Smith:  Thank you! I love Rooted. It’s like watching a baby grow up and finally go off into the big, scary world. You’re nervous, but you know it’s ready.

Yes, the podcast has been a blast. It’s called Word Matters, and it consists of short episodes in which Trevin Wax and I discuss confusing or difficult passages of the Bible. Each episode is 15-20 minutes long, and we always try to give practical advice about how to preach and teach the passages we cover. We also have guests from time to time!

Delighting Grace:  Any parting words for our readers concerning theology?

Brandon Smith:  Again, don’t be afraid of theology. If you’re a Christian, you’re a theologian. Keep hungering and thirsting for righteousness by reading God’s Word and praying, and your theology will grow along with it.

Delighting Grace:  Amen to that pastor. So guys check his latest book “Rooted” and the podcast with Trevin Wax called “Word Matters”.

Save

The Quotable Round-Up #37

For this week we are featuring quotes from J. A. Medders and Brandon Smith’s latest book titled “Rooted”. Hope you’ll like it and please pick up a copy.

“The church, Christ’s body, is called to live now in the light of the future.” –J. A. Medders and Brandon Smith, Rooted

“Everlasting forgiveness is found with Jesus, by faith alone in his death for our sins and in his resurrection from the dead.” –J. A. Medders and Brandon Smith, Rooted

“When sin entered the world, God didn’t turn a blind eye. In his justice and mercy, he’s provided the Savior.” –J. A. Medders and Brandon Smith, Rooted

“What we need today is a gospel-minded bucket list. In eternity, you won’t be able to travel to Thailand and tell unreached peoples about Jesus. You won’t be able to give your money to pro-life movements. You won’t be able to evangelize your friends and family members, urging them to look to Jesus. That’s for now. Today. Right now. This is the mindset we need today.” –J. A. Medders and Brandon Smith, Rooted

“True worship is glorifying God in all of life—to the perimeters and edges of life.” –J. A. Medders and Brandon Smith, Rooted

“If you have a paralyzing fear of death, you are living as one who has no hope. You are living with a bad eschatology.” –J. A. Medders and Brandon Smith, Rooted

“Christians have no need to fear death because we are going to be raised from the dead, joining Jesus in a resurrection like his.” –J. A. Medders and Brandon Smith, Rooted

“Now, our greatest accomplishment is something we didn’t do, but rather something that’s been done for us and in us. We boast in Jesus’s cross.” –J. A. Medders and Brandon Smith, Rooted

 

Book Review: “Rooted” by J. A. Medders and Brandon D. Smith

The title “Rooted” gives me the impression that this is just a “one cool word” books that are already out in the market. What got me excited is the subtitle “Theology for Growing Christians”.  So this short book is about theology. Actually they call this a “primer” that deals with the basics doctrine of Christianity. So this book doesn’t cover all the doctrines that we believers affirm.

As I read “Rooted” I can assure you that Smith and Medders really delivers and does connect the message to the readers. They know what they are saying and they can convey it in the manner that show the book is enough to be a primer and meaty enough to have great content. Medders provided an easy to digest and accessible explanations similar to his previous book “Gospel Formed” (which you should check it out too). They dropped the ivory tower jargons with millennial-friendly words which can reach believers (and unbelievers as well) whether new or seasoned.

Chapter 1 discusses the Trinity and how Godhead relates to each other. Chapter 2 zooms in the reliability of Scriptures. But I really enjoyed chapters 3 and 4 which tackle about the gospel and eschatology.

“Rooted” is the go to book to learn, unlearn and relearn about some of the basic doctrines that Christians believe. If you’re just starting or already ahead in your Christian journey and you want some map, pick this book up.

My verdict: 4.5 out of 5.

The authors of “Rooted” provided me a review copy of the book.

More book reviews here: https://delightinggrace.wordpress.com

The Quotable Round Up # 9

I’m checking some sermons from preachers that will greatly benefit me spiritually. As I download their sermons in MP3 format, I’ve noticed that they made an effort to have a transcript of it. It will be beneficial to read and listen to it. If God willing, I’ll give my young people some assignment to listen and read these sermons. Another thing is, it those transcripts will provide me materials to get quotes to be posted on different social media accounts I have most importantly for “The Quotable Round Up”. Let’s pray for it and here’s our weekly serving of quotes:
“True fellowship with God will involve true community with God’s people, a fellowship of light in the gospel.”
–J. A. Medders
“The gospel frees you from living for the approval of others, because you’ve been fully approved by God in Christ.”
–J. A. Medders
“Whenever God is blessing a ministry, you can expect increased opposition as well as increased opportunities.”
— Warren W. Weirsbe
“The doctrine of assurance is not an excuse for sin; it is an encouragement not to sin. The fact that I know I am married and have documents to prove it does not in the least tempt me to investigate other relationships. My wife and I are secure in our love for each other. When I realize the expensive grace that God has poured out on me, I want to draw closer to him and share his love even more.”
— Warren W. Weirsbe
“Every truth from the gospel is like a bunker-busting missile. It crashes through the hard outer shells of discouraged, floundering, and wandering hearts and releases the explosive joy of Christ inside them.”
–J. A. Medders
“Divine love is an act of selfless sacrifice. When you love in that way, you’ll do what is needed without counting the cost or analyzing the need’s merit. And your love will continue to meet the need no matter if it is received or rejected, appreciated or resented.”
–John F. MacArthur Jr.
“Loving as Christ loves does not depend on what others are in themselves but entirely on what they are in Christ.”
–John F. MacArthur Jr.

The Quotable Round Up #5

Howdy partners! Lets dig into this weeks quotes by John MacArthur Jr. and J. A. Medders. If you find these quotes helpful and encouraging and you want more, you can check John MacArthur’s website: http://www.gty.org and J. A. Medders website: http://jamedders.com. Buy J. A. Medders book “Gospel Formed” were these quotes came from. Now before you check them out, dive on 7 quotes from these two authors:

“Grace means that we are not defined by our sins but by Jesus, who became our sin in his death and then rose from the dead in sinless victory.”
— J. A. Medders

“When we read the Bible, we aren’t just reading a book, we are meeting with a person.”
— J. A. Medders

“God calls leaders not to be governing monarchs but humble slaves, not slick celebrities but laboring servants, not charismatic personalities but faithful shepherds. The man who leads God’s people must above all exemplify sacrifice, devotion, submission, and lowliness.”
— John F.MacArthur Jr.

“When we have a right relationship to God, every aspect of our lives will settle into its divinely ordained place.”
–John F. MacArthur Jr.

“Obedience to God is one of the supreme marks of our relationship to Him as children.”
–John F. MacArthur Jr.

“Whatever you seek, whether it’ s peace, fellowship, knowledge, victory, or boldness, God has an abundant supply in heavenlies. We need only ask our Father for it.”
—John F. MacArthur Jr.

“True prayer comes from humble people who express absolute dependence on God.”
–John MacArthur Jr.

The Quotable Round Up #3

It’s another Tuesday and time for The Quotable Round Up. We serve the best and awesome quotes from your favorite authors. This week lets have some from John MacArthur and J. A. Medders. If in anyway this post encourage you, feel free to share this post on Facebook, Twitter or on any social media accounts. That way Delighting Grace will be encourage too and post more of these quotes.

“The central function of the church on earth is to reach the lost.”
–John MacArthur Jr.

“Prayer focuses on God as the One who supplies. It acknowledges that He is the source of all our physical needs, and it teaches us to live one day at a time in the confidence that He will meet those needs.”
–John MacArthur Jr.

“If you want to have that passion in your prayers, you need to realize that the real benefit of prayer is not the changes God may make in your circumstances but the changes He will make in you and in your perception of them.”
–John MacArthur, Jr.

“The cross is the pulpit sermon of God’s matchless love for you.”
–J. A. Medders

“The gospel stands as God’s bouquet of love for you.”
J.A. Medders

“As the blood of Jesus flowed down the cross, it washed away all of our sin stains. Now we are new people in Jesus.”
–J. A. Medders

“To be devoted to prayer is to earnestly, courageously, and persistently bring everything, especially the needs of others, before God.”
–John F. MacArthur Jr.

The Quotable Round Up #2

Happy Tuesday guys! Here’s another dose of quotes from our favorite Christian authors. If this post bless you, please do share it on your social media accounts. Also kindly uplift us in your prayer for our ministries and outreaches in various places God has called us.

“The gospel is C-4 to lukewarm worship.”
–J. A. Medders

“Christians love the Bible not simply for the facts and truths we find, but because the Bible ushers us into the worship of God. We learn more about God. We see God’s awesome love and power. We see the great story of God and his love for rebels. We are thrown at the feet of God and humbled by his grace. And there in the words of God we discover and worship the Word of God—Jesus Christ.”
–J. A. Medders

“If the Bible is the apple of your eye, logically it should be because Jesus is the apple of your eye; a true love for the Bible stems from a Jesus obsession. When the gospel crashes into our lives, what we cherish changes. Plain and simple, Jesus takes the cake. Jesus takes the number one spot.”
–J. A. Medders

“Recall what the gospel says about you: You are new, forgiven, freed, and accepted. God is for you, not against you. Flood your heart with gospel truths and Satan will scram.”
— J. A. Medders

Treasure the Bible because you treasure Christ.”
— J. A. Medders

“All our hurts, hang-ups, disappointments, and struggles do not make up who you are. Only Jesus does. If you are in Christ, you are no longer defined by your sins, whether past, present, or future. Jesus gives you a new identity.”
–J. A. Medders

The Quotable Round Up #1

Welcome to Delighting Grace new feature called “The Quotable Round Up”. In this feature, we will collect awesome quotes from Christian leaders, authors, preachers, theologians and philosophers that you will love. This will be on a weekly basis and you’ll get the fresh quotes every Tuesday. I hope and pray that you’ll like this feature, share it and come back every week. Pray that I can post more of this.

 

“The Spirit of God indwells the believer and enlightens his or her understanding of what the Word teaches.”
–John MacArthur Jr.

“Saving faith doesn’t come from hearing just any part of the Word. Faith comes by hearing specific truths about Christ’s life, death, burial, and resurrection. It comes by hearing specific challenges that convict us of our own sin and need.”
–John MacArthur Jr.

“God doesn’t want us to swerve away from the hope of the gospel. Churches, ministries, seminaries, parachurch organizations, Sunday school classes, and committed churchgoers can all shift from the center: the hope of the gospel. With all of your might, vigor, resolve, and strength—remain firm in the gospel. Don’t shift.”
–J. A. Medders

“Don’t start thinking that your good works are adding anything to the work of Christ. Don’t start believing that somehow God is going to love you more because of what you are doing or not doing. Cement the truth in your heart that you are fully forgiven for all of your crimes against God because of Jesus. Don’t forget that you are divorced from sin’s power because you are married to Christ.”
–J. A. Medders

“When you shift from the gospel there are four places you can drift into: license, legalism, lukewarmness, or leaving the faith altogether. You may not have a life of rampant sin, but you may have an area of license that is just as sinister. Legalism will take you into self-righteousness and works-based approval. You’ll start to gauge your joy on yourself and not on Christ, and you’ll begin to hope in the branch rather than the Vine.”
— J. A. Medders

“God’s arms are open. He is the prodigal’s father, yours and mine.”
–J. A. Medders

“Remember that Christ alone, and none of your works, makes you righteous before God.”
–J. A. Medders