John Piper’s seminar for the Bethlehem Institute focused on questions surrounding Scripture, it’s canonicity, reliability and answering critics of the Bible. As to be expected, Piper is very thoughtful and provides a lot of wise advice, as well has historical information, that will open your eyes and help you think more solidly about Scripture.
Tim Keller has written a new book called ‘The Reason for God’. On the book’s website is a series of sermons Keller gave at his church Redeemer that form the basis for the book. I have not read the book yet, but I have listened to these messages and must say there is some really good stuff here. Keller is great at engaging secular presuppositions and skeptical assumptions. This is a great series of sermons and I look forward to reading his book.
The messages are:
Exclusivity: How can there only be one true religion?
Suffering: If God is good, why is there so much evil in the world?
Absolutism: Don’t we all have to find truth for ourselves?
Injustice: Hasn’t Christianity been an instrument for oppression?
Hell: Isn’t the God of the Christianity an angry judge?
Doubt: What should I do with my doubts?
Liberalism: Isn’t theBible historically unreliable and regressive?
C. J. Mahaney, Josh Harris and Jeff Purswell have launched the first Sovereign Grace leadership podcast targeting church leaders for enouragement, instruction and wisdom.
This first podcast focused on the purpose of the podcast, and then primarily addressed the topic of a pastor’s reading habits. A very helpful podcast.
Al Mohler recently gave 4 incredible lectures on the face of the new atheism that we are seeing attack the Christian faith on a daily basis, and at a very popular and successful publishing level. These were given at the W. H. Thomas Griffith Memorial Lectureship at Dallas Theological Seminary.
Mohler brings his vast, wealth of knowledge and his incredible mind to clearly present to us a the dangerous nature of the new atheism, and the specific challenges we must be willing to embrace.
The lectures are on the Endgame of Secularism, the Assault on Theism, The Defense of Theism, and the Future of Christianity.
This years topic, ‘The Pastor as Father and Son’ seemed a bit odd, and I wasn’t sure what to expect from this conference. But I have to tell you, this was a great conference that far exceeded my lukewarm expectations. In fact, I would say it was one of the best for Desiring God.
Take one: Don Carson. Don took the heavy lifting theologically with the topic and delivered an amazing set of messages. I don’t know what to say about it, other than that if Don speaks next year on the life of crickets, I’m going to tune in. Don is quite simply amazing, and as Mark Dever recently said, Don Carson is the John Calvin of our day.
Take Two: John Piper. Here again, I have to admit that, when I heard John’s subject for his biographical message was his father Bill Piper, I was a bit disappointed. John’s intimate reflection of his father’s character and unique ministry was stirring, encouraging, rebuking, admonishing, humbling, and cheering. What a great message filled with deep insight and practical application.
Take Three: Crawford Loritts. Who? Crawford Loritts. A Call to Courage was his title, and a Call to Courageous Christian pastoral leadership it was. Crawford challenges pastors to stop being weak, unbelieving, God-editing, Bible ignorant, plagerizing, idolatrous, integrity-lacking, men pleasers. It’s time for men to put on their jock straps and be men. Crawford is pastor of Fellowship Bible Church in Roswell, Georgia. This was my first time listening to Crawford, and I don’t know a lot about him, but I will be hunting down more of his sermons — so keep a look out for future posts on this preacher. We need more men in the pulpit like this man.
Take Four: Greg Livingstone, CEO of Frontiers Mission organization. Greg brings to the table many years of missions work and missions oversight.
Piper delivered this message to the UCF in 2005, in Birmingham, Alabama. The subject on John’s heart was to answer the question ‘Where is God when tragedy strikes.’ After reflecting about hurricane Katrina, 9/11, and other disasters, Piper draws us to God to consider the reason calamity is allowed to happen — to call us to repentence, as Jesus called the people who questioned him about the calamities in 1st century Palestine.
Also in this message Piper levels a harsh, well deserving attack on the properity gospel, the extract of which has been made into a short video clip called ‘America’s Ugly Exported Gospel.’
C. J. Mahaney turns the tables on Mark Dever and interviews him about his life, ministry as a pastor and as president of 9 Marks. This is a great and enjoyable interview, despite the fact that C. J. finds free reign to express his sport-a-holism. One of the most unique aspects, which we are richly rewarded by in listening, is that C. J., Mark and Matt Schmucker all know each other so well, and they know where the meat is in the discussion, and further, they all have a tremendous passion for gospel truth and faithfulness in ministry.
I would have to say, if you like the 9 Marks interviews, this one will be one of your favorites, and perhaps most challenging. C. J., thank you.
Robert Reymond has been publishing quite a few really good books for the past few years, including a Systematic Theology that many say replaces Louis Berkhof’s. He is Professor Emeritus of Systematic Theology at Knox Theological Seminary. These are a series of sermons he delivered at Second Presbyterian Church, Greenville, South Carolina.