Saturday Sampler: July 7 — July 13

Doily Sampler Pink

Giving us our “weekly dose of Spurgeon,” Pyromaniacs publishes Turn Away as an encouragement to focus our gaze on the right things. You’ll appreciate the practical instruction in this brief meditation.

Those of you following the current events with Beth Moore might appreciate An Open Letter to Beth Moore — Timeline of Events compiled by Michelle Lesley. Keep this post handy; Michelle will add updates as things progress.

You might also wish to visit The End Time to read The importance of a Bible teacher’s transparency: it relates to accountability by Elizabeth Prata.  She makes extremely important points that we must take seriously.

Ever the gracious Southern gentleman, Justin Peters pens My Thoughts on Beth Moore’s Blog Post with such gentleness and respect that the truth he shares seems easier to digest.  He brings out a fresh perspective on the situation that some of you might really appreciate.

Continuing her series on worldly attitudes that ensnare Christians, Leslie A of Growing 4 Life challenges the ways we respond to criticism in Thinking Beyond the Obvious (Part 4). Given the climate in social media these days, her Biblical wisdom demands our attention.

In his article for Gentle Reformation, Kyle E. Sims cries More About Jesus I World Know. He illuminates the beauty of understanding theology.

Parents,  Matthew Tuck’s  essay, Reading the Bible to My Son in Not Ourselves, is both touching and instructive. Not only will you enjoy reading it (the writing alone is splendid), but you’ll come away inspired to teach God’s Word to your own children.

If you want a more intellectual approach to the Christian response to homosexuality, go to Blog & Magog for Douglas Wilson’s piece, Emoting Like Pelagians. I appreciate the lesson on theology as well as the practical application to one of today’s most pressing issues.

Nathan Busenitz, in his article for The Cripplegate, encourages us toward Heavenly Clarity as we swim through the fog of earthly troubles. Why do I use the metaphor of  swimming through fog? You’ll have to read the article to find out!

Having lived in a nursing home for pretty much two years, I greatly appreciate Michael Coughlin for posting Go Therefore: Nursing Home in Things Above Us. I would add that nursing home residents need more than brief visits and monthly Bible Studies. They need real friends who visit often and spend time with them. It’s a truly horrible way to live — a Christian who makes genuine investments in these suffering people has a powerful opportunity to demonstrate the love of Christ.

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Saturday Sampler: June 30 — July 6

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Have you ever wondered where the Roman Catholic Church came up with their devotion to Mary? Leonardo De Chirico reviews a book on that very topic in 164. From the Mary of the Bible to the Mary of Manifold Devotions for the Vatican Files. He includes points for evangelicals to consider.

Although I didn’t highlight the first two installments of Leslie A’s series on worldly attitudes among Christians in Growing 4 Life, I very much recommend Thinking Beyond the Obvious (Part 3). This one is truly excellent! As a bonus, she includes links to her first two articles. Check them out.

Taking us carefully through John 3:1-20, Mike Ratliff of Possessing the Treasure asks Are you born again? This is one of the clearest expositions of the passage that I’ve ever read. What do you think?

Blogging for Abounding Grace Radio, R. Scott Clark reflects on Revoice, Nashville, And The Therapeutic Revolution. Lots of food for thought here, ladies!

Do you know what The Most Politically Incorrect Bible Passage is? Alan Schlemon shows it to us in his post for Stand to Reason, and then he explains why it’s also one of the most powerful Bible passages. Curious?  Well then, click the link and find out why this politically incorrect passage has such power.

Take a look at Elizabeth Prata’s thought provoking essay, Our associations matter: Biblical study on when to stay and when to separate in The End Time.  In navigating through false concepts of love and tolerance, the Scriptures she shares offer good guidance.

Jesse Johnson of The Cripplegate writes “Persecution emboldened me!” as an encouragement to believers. Please don’t miss this powerful article!

During my years in Charismatic circles, we’d occasionally refer to Calvinists as “The Frozen Chosen” as a term of derision. Guy Richards examines this term for the Ligonier blog in his article, The Frozen Chosen (which he originally wrote for Tabletalk Magazine). He fails to mention how the nickname is used to suggest that those of us in Reformed circles supposedly don’t experience the Holy Spirit, but he does a wonderful job of showing that we’re anything but frozen!

Sobering posts aren’t fun to read, but often they’re essential. Propaganda Being Taught to the Children in Biblical Beginnings confronts us with some uncomfortable realities, but it also balances those hard truths with unexpected encouragement.

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Saturday Sampler: June 23 — June 29

Fish Sampler

Each Sunday, Pyromaniacs provides our “weekly dose of Spurgeon” by quoting lengthy passages from the sermons and writings of C.H. Spurgeon. This week they quote a medley of passages in Spurgeon on women preaching. Helpful  stuff!

Emma at My Redemption for His Glory blogs about The One Thing Keeping Us From God. She holds up some strong challenges that each of us must consider, but she also brings us back to our merciful Savior.

With a careful balance of respect for the dead and concern for the deceived, Pastor Gabriel Hughes writes Remembering (and Responding to) Rachel Held Evans. Because Rachel’s followers continue to read her books and believe her false teaching, Gabe rightly understands the necessity of countering her assertions.

I’m recommending a second item from Pyromaniacs this week, this time written by Hohn Cho. The Complimentarian Responsibility Toward Women is primarily aimed to men (pastors, in particular), but as women we can see how Biblical masculinity offers us protection and security.

As a baby boomer, I appreciate Tom of excatholic4christ for writing One last time to witness for Jesus? in response to an obituary in his local paper.

Although I don’t anticipate deleting my personal Facebook page quite yet (that separation is becoming a distinct possibility at some point, I admit), I believe Mark McIntyre of Attempts at Honesty makes some important observations in Living up to our Facebook Page. See what you think.

Golf and the Sanctity of Life, which Richard Holderman writes for Gentle Reformation, is definitely heartwarming. But it also requires us to think about why we should value human life.

Writing from personal experience (and most likely very recent experience), Michelle Lesley offers Five Words of Encouragement for Spiritual Warfare’s Battle-Weary Soldiers. As always, she substantiates each point with abundant Scripture — one of the reasons I love her work so much.

Posting to The End Time, Elizabeth Prata assists us in Learning when to stay in and when to separate out. She draws from the wisdom of Proverbs to make a practical and timely application.

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Saturday Sampler: June 16 — June 22

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We’re in the middle of Gay Pride Month, and many join the LBGTQ community in celebrating sexual sin. The secular media has been emboldened to teach young children to embrace same sex marriage as normal and good. Writing for Abounding Grace Radio, R. Scott Clark points to this trend as a prime example of Why You Should Not Let Hollywood Catechize Your Children.

Posting on The End Time, Elizabeth Prata reminds us that The only way to deal with sin is to mortify it. She echoes a basic Biblical principle — a principle that present-day evangelicals routinely ignore.

Don’t read Clint Archer’s Selfie-Syndrome: Overcoming Narcissism on The Cripplegate unless you’re mature enough to accept conviction from the Holy Spirit. But if you want the Lord to help you out of selflessness,  I highly recommend that you read the article and do some business with Him.

God created you to do amazing things? Michelle Lesley takes on this popular saying by comparing it to God’s Word and encouraging women who believe their lives amount to little. Please, if you feel at all discouraged about your contribution to God’s kingdom, read Michelle’s post. (It also shows us how to use Scripture in discernment.)

I’m not surprised that Erin Benziger finds spiritual lessons in some rouge flowers in her driveway. Check out More Than a Pansy on her Do Not Be Surprised blog for two wonderful glimpses into God’s sovereignty.

Although Christy Britton writes primarily to writers in Eyes Up, her counsel in this post for Servants of Grace apples to anyone. It dovetails beautifully with Michelle’s piece. I encourage you to read both — they certainly minister to me regarding my temptation to judge the effectiveness of The Outspoken TULIP by numbers.

SharaC of Into the Foolishness of God examines the trend of Wrestling with Scriptures that don’t conform to popular culture.

Where did the term complentarianism come from? Denny Burk gives us a peek into recent church history with his article, Complentarianism? What’s in a name? This blog post helps us understand the reasons for adopting this name and embracing this position.

In The Cripplegate, Jesse Johnson teaches A simple method to strengthen your prayer life. You may not agree with all of his points (neither do I), but a lot of what he says really puts prayer in an interesting perspective.

Expanding on a recent Tweet he made, Darrell Harrison enumerates Six Reasons the Church in American is Becoming Increasingly Impotent in his Just Thinking for Myself blog. His assessment deserves careful attention, as I believe he correctly diagnoses some prominent maladies in evangelicalism.

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Saturday Sampler: June 2 — June 8

Tulips01Sometimes a Biblical answer surprises us. Read The Mailbag: Stay at Home Dads? by Michelle Lesley and see if she responds according to your expectations.

Enjoy Faith Sits — a pithy insight that Douglas Wilson shares on Blog & Mablog.

Elizabeth Prata is at least a decade younger than I am, but on The End Time she expresses thoughts that have flitted through my mind lately. So late so soon? puts my thoughts in Biblical perspective. Even if you’re still on the happier side of 50, you will benefit from this essay.

As much as we resist the idea, Spiritual growth comes through humility under the lash. Mike Ratliff supports this thesis in Possessing the Treasure by quoting both William Tyndale and the Word of God.

Check out Jared Olivetti’s How to disagree with your spiritual leaders on the Gentle Reformation blog. His tips could actually give you a better relationship with your pastor and/or elders as you show respect in expressing your concerns.

You’ve seen the memes: Moses Was a Murderer (and other things the Bible doesn’t say). Stephen McAlpine examines what the Bible says  about Moses, and explains the difficulties with memes of this nature.

Kim Shay, writing for Out of the Ordinary, answers the question, Do I Need to Change the World? I appreciate the way she looks to Romans 12 for the answer.

Over at Reformation 21, Lisa Robinson Spencer contributes her thoughts On Platt and Priorities. Whether or not you agree with her political positions, I hope you’ll recognize that she adheres to the Word of God in respect to praying for those in positions of secular authority. Her article displays both grace and spiritual maturity.

For an in-depth look at how the Lord blesses us through suffering, read Michael Coughlan’s Psalm 119:65-68 — Afflicted by God in Things Above Us. It may challenge your theology. Actually, it most likely will challenge your theology. But it will also assure you of God’s love and goodness when He calls you to go through difficulties.

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Saturday Sampler: May 19 — May 25

Flower Sampler

In Christian Persecution: Happens more often than you think, SlimJim of The Domain for Truth lifts the curtain (just a little) to reveal what believers around the world suffer for the sake of the Gospel.

Weighing in on the debate about women preaching, Michelle Lesley writes The Mailbag: Counter Arguments to Egalitarianism based on Scripture. She correctly asserts that this is absolutely not a secondary issue! I love her passion for upholding God’s Word.

What Is Discernment? Sinclair Ferguson answers that question in an article for the Ligonier blog.

Both single women and mothers of teenage girls will appreciate Grace Hody’s post, Hook Ups and the Whole Person, featured in Biblical Woman this week. Grace counsels wisely and compassionately on how to navigate dating in a way that protects personal integrity and honors the Lord.

In general, I feel reluctant to share anything from The Gospel Coalition blog because so many of its writers seem to be going left on social issues. But Is There Really an ‘Orthodox’ View on Sexuality by Trevin Wax is a rare exception. It demonstrates the early Church’s commitment to sexual purity in contrast to the surrounding culture’s licentiousness. We can learn from the early Church’s example.

Denny Burk explains Why it is important not to conflate prophecy and teaching in discussions about women preaching. This article gives us a lot of food for thought to munch on.

Go to The Domain for Truth and take SlimJim’s Quick Spiritual DNA Test to see if you’re truly a child of God.

For a clear, although sad, analysis of the Social Justice Movement, you might want to read The Social Justice Dividing Line in Delivered By Grace. Josh Buice outlines the various difficulties in making distinctions between Social Justice and Biblical justice. This matter is creating serious problems among evangelicals, and this analysis defines the controversy better than anything else I’ve read.

In a pleasantly surprising installment to Knowable Word, Peter Krol shows us how Context Matters: He Who Began a Good Work in You. I appreciate the way Krol brings out the rich texture of a beloved verse!

Elizabeth Prata gives an important Thought for the Day in The End Time about where we keep our minds. Ladies, please pray for Elizabeth as she battles a stubborn and potentially dangerous case of pneumonia. We need her well for many reasons — including her insightful essays.

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Saturday Sampler: May 12 — May 18

Cheesecake Sampler

Mondays with Michelle Lesley always delight me because she answers questions from her readers with incredible wisdom. In The Mailbag: If someone follows false teachers or teaches false doctrine for a long time, is she saved?, she offers a response that shows godly wisdom.

I like The Cripplegate. But I absolutely love the articles by Jordan Standridge! How Do I Evangelize Someone Who Says They Don’t Trust the Bible? is an excellent example of his brilliance.

Speaking of brilliant, Lisa Spencer of TheoThoughts writes At the end of the day, Christianity trumps white evangelicalism. I like the way this lady thinks.

Australian blogger Stephen McAlpine gives an interesting, sobering and sorely needed perspective by writing Would You Accept More Gospel Hostility If It Also Meant More Gospel Openness? His article both challenges and encourages us in evangelism as McAlpine looks at Western culture. Please don’t neglect it.

Sometimes I believe Elizabeth Prata and I lead parallel thought lives. Lately, the Lord has been convicting me to be more diligent about confessing sin. And just as I’m praying about that conviction, she writes Confess early, confess often in The End Time as a response to Psalm 32.

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