Archive for the ‘Well Said’ Category

  1. Abortion, Social Media Motherhood, Liberty, & Evangelism

    Posted on January 23rd, 2015 by Jonathan


    Abortion and the Gospel: “Too often, pastors and church leaders assume that, when talking about abortion, their invisible debating partner is the “pro-choice” television commentator or politician. Not so. Many of the people endangered by the abortion culture aren’t even pro-choice.” Russell Moore encourages us to meet the culture of abortion (and all its casualties) head on with the Gospel of Jesus on Roe v. Wade‘s anniversary week.

    Social media and our narrow view of motherhood: Specifically aimed at mothers caught in newly packaged keep-up-with-the-Joneses game of comparison on Facebook, Instagram, and the like, Catherine Parks’ encouragement to broaden the range of people you follow on social media is instructive to everyone. “At the heart of it, our requirements for one another are too small, rather than too great…”

    9 Myths About Abortion Rights and Roe v. Wade: This week marks the forty-second anniversary of the Supreme Court’s ruling on Roe v. Wade. Kevin DeYoung seeks to set the record straight by highlighting nine false conceptions people commonly have about abortion rights and Roe. “Get informed. Keep praying. Be ready to act.”

    Supreme Court Defends Freedom in Landmark Religious Liberty Case: Joe Carter gives us the basics on the recent Supreme Court ruling on Holt v. Hobbs, in which the Court upheld an Arkansas inmate’s right to grow a half inch beard out of religious conviction. Quoting Eric Rassbach, “This is a victory not just for one prisoner in Arkansas, but for every American who believes and wants the freedom to act on those beliefs.”

    2 Big Reasons Evangelism Isn’t Working: “While a person’s response to Christ is ultimately a matter that rests in God’s sovereign hands—something we have no control over—a person’s hearing of the gospel is a matter we do have control over and responsibility for.” Jonathan Dodson goes on to unpack two of the reasons he thinks people find our evangelism unbelievable.

    It?: A powerful poem about abortion from John Piper.

  2. When Religious Liberty and Sexual Liberty Collide

    Posted on January 16th, 2015 by Jonathan


    In light of the upcoming release of David Platt’s new book, Counter Culture (Feb 3), this week’s Well Said will touch on a couple of the topics in it: religious liberty and so-called same-sex marriage. More specifically, the following articles dive into the link between the two… and the tension that exists when they conflict.

    Religious Liberty vs. Erotic Liberty – Religious Liberty is Losing: Albert Mohler says, “Erotic liberty is new on the scene, but it is central to the moral project of modernity — a project that asserts erotic liberty, which the framers never imagined, as an even more fundamental liberty than freedom of religion.”

    Questions and Ethics: A Conversation with Erick Erickson on Religious Liberty and the Atlanta Fire Chief: Erickson talks with Russell Moore about religious liberty concerns surrounding the firing of Kelvin Cochran and the “chilling” response by the New York Times.

    Frank Bruni vs. Religious Liberty: In Ramesh Ponnuru’s opinion, “Bruni should just say that our country and its Constitution are too protective of religious freedom and need to be changed accordingly.”

  3. Charlie Hebdo and Free Speech

    Posted on January 9th, 2015 by Jonathan


    TGC Spotlight 01.09.15: If you’re looking for a good, quick recap of the terrorist attack in Paris, Joe Carter starts his weekly summary of articles with just that.

    Theological Extremism in a Secular Age: “Western elites are relatively helpless when it comes to dealing with the world that will not operate by the same rules of rational order and rational discourse.” Albert Mohler further explicates this, the main thrust of his article, but he also discusses what makes blasphemy in Islam different from blasphemy in Christianity.

    Decency, Pluralism, and the Christian Response to Charlie Hebdo: Is doubling down with more of what can be considered blasphemous rhetoric the best way to stand up for free speech? According to Andrew Walker, free speech advocacy and intentionally offensive messaging aren’t necessarily married.

    Men Without Chests: How C. S. Lewis Predicted Charlie Hebdo Censorship: Unlike Andrew Walker’s post, Sean Davis illuminates some real concerns about news organizations like CNN censoring the Charlie Hebdo cartoons that enraged the eventual terrorists that attacked their offices.

  4. Movies, Viral Mormon Music Videos, and More Movies

    Posted on December 19th, 2014 by Jonathan


    Moses Without the Supernatural: Ridley Scott’s “Exodus: Gods and Kings”: “The entire narrative does not match the actual story. It fails as a whole even more than it fails in its parts.” Albert Mohler identifies what is missing.

    Bilbo’s Last Goodbye: “Say what you may about Jackson, he has done Tolkien and us a great service. Whatever disappointments we may have with the details, he has introduced millions of new readers, and a whole new generation, to Middle-earth.” David Matthis goes on to tell us why that’s a good thing.

    Maroni From the Realms of Glory: You may have seen (and enjoyed) the viral video of these popular Christmas hymns… but did you realize it’s part of a Mormon campaign to spread their religion? Tim Challies offers some help on how we ought to think of this as Christians.

    How to Ruin a Moses Movie: Needless to say, Joe Carter was not a fan of the latest cinematic telling of the Exodus. “In the future, this movie should be taught in film schools to show all the ways a movie based on a Bible story can go wrong.” He tells us all the ways Scott’s film fell short.

    Franklin Graham: Movie ‘Unbroken’ Omits ‘Most Important Part’ of Louis Zamperini’s Life: Louis Zamperini may have been physically unbroken during his time as a POW, but his life started spiraling out of control when he got home. “The broken man became whole in 1949, when Zamperini attended a Billy Graham crusade in downtown Los Angeles.”

  5. Santa, Preaching, Torture, Ferguson, & Homosexuality

    Posted on December 12th, 2014 by Jonathan


    The Santa Question: John Murchison contends that there is freedom in deciding how your family handles “the Santa question”… as long as you follow two guidelines…

    Expositional PreachingSam Allberry highly recommends David Helm’s new book, Expositional Preaching: How We Speak God’s Word Today. His thoughtful and clever review is worth reading in itself.

    7 Things Christians Should Know About Torture: In the wake of this week’s scathing report on the CIA from a Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Joe Carter helps shed a bright light on the shady practice of torture.

    Why We Fail to Progress Past Ferguson: J.D. Greear weighs in on the racial problems made prominent in recent months. “Both ‘sides’ have points that need to be heard.”

    Seven Things I Wish My Pastor Knew About My Homosexuality: “Knowledge and truth can help us both stand against the growing tide of moral capitulation,” says Jean Lloyd. “In light of this, here are seven things I wish you knew about homosexuality.”

  6. On Garner, Ferguson, and Racism

    Posted on December 5th, 2014 by Jonathan


    Yet again, our nation has been shaken by the racial fault lines that run through its middle. Just over a week after a grand jury chose not to indict the police officer who fatally shot Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO (see last week’s Well Said), a grand jury in Staten Island, NY chose not to indict the police officer whose chokehold resulted in Eric Garner’s death. The problems here are big and complex. Emotions, sin, bias, ignorance, and ignorance of ignorance can make it difficult to know how we ought to respond. But pretending that nothing has happened is not an option, so we must respond. For those of us who aren’t sure what to do, there is at least one response we can be confident in – listening. And right now, there are many voices worth listening to. Here’s a start…

    “Something to Do With Something Else”: In a beautifully written piece, systematic theologian Fred Sanders shows how “Ferguson-then-Garner has helped some people see that the steady-as-she-goes image is not plausible.”

    Coulda Been Me: In both an essay and a song, Trip Lee shares why he is hurting in the wake of Ferguson and Garner. “For now, I just want to say that I have a heavy heart.”

    On the Eric Garner Grand Jury Decision: With his usual clarity and insight, Russell Moore responds to Wednesday’s grand jury decision. “It’s high time that we start listening to our African-American brothers and sisters when they tell us that they’re experiencing a problem in this country.

    “I can’t imagine.” Yes, you can.: “I suggest that we use our imaginations as the means for genuinely empathizing with those who mourn,” says Isaac Adams. “This mourning isn’t an option, but a command (Rom. 12:15).”

    Explainer: What You Should Know About the Eric Garner Case: In a case where objectivity is hard to come by, Joe Carter intends his article to relay plain facts. “Here are some details about the controversial case…”

    Discussion on Ferguson: In this video discussion, Lecrae, James White, Voddie Baucham, and B.J. Thompson wade through the complexities of responding to Ferguson well. The conversation gives some helpful perspective.

    The sin of racism: In speaking of Garner’s case, Trillia Newbell said it “is yet another reminder that all is not well in America. It’s a reminder that racial tensions and divisions are high. It’s a reminder that there is a glaring racial disparity in our justice system.” She then makes the biblical case against racism and shows how it’s overcome.

    Racial Diversity is the Gospel Apologetic of the New Testament: “In Ephesians, the gospel apologetic is the church itself. Specifically, the racial diversity that Paul emphasized there.” Michael Kelley shows the biblical importance of equality and diversity in the church.

  7. 2 Comments

    On Ferguson

    Posted on November 28th, 2014 by Jonathan


    Ferguson and the Path to Peace: Dr. Russell Moore points out that “The reason white and black Americans often view things so differently is because white and black Americans often live and move in different places, with different cultural lenses. In the church, however, we belong to one another. We are part of one Body.”

    A Decision in Ferguson: How Should Evangelicals Respond?: Ed Stetzer puts this helpful piece together with excerpts from Lisa Sharon Harper and Pastor Leonce Crump, and also includes a number of good resources at the bottom (including an enlightening roundtable discussion). In Stetzer’s words, “It’s worth listening to why people are responding differently to the situation in Ferguson.” As Christians, we must.

    The Ferguson Grand Jury Has Given Us Our Marching Orders: “In this instance, I am a firm believer that Lady Justice miscarried.” Pastor Thabiti Anyabwile went on to propos a plan for moving forward. “Here’s how I wish the President had ended his comments and what I pray the remaining movement in Ferguson, New York, LA and other  parts of the country would commit itself to . . .”

    #Ferguson and the Cross: Regarding Ferguson, Paster Derwin Gray asks, “What if black and white Christians shared life with each other in a local church community and heard each other’s stories and walked in each other’s shoes?”

    President Obama Delivers a Satement on the Ferguson Grand Jury’s Decision: “We have made enormous progress in race relations over the course of the past several decades,” said the President. “I’ve witnessed that in my own life. And to deny that progress I think is to deny America’s capacity for change. But what is also true is that there are still problems and communities of color aren’t just making these problems up.”

    The Briefing, 11-25-14: Dr. Al Mohler offers some comments on Ferguson to help us faithfully wade through the complexities. “Christians . . . should be prompted to remember just how urgently we need to pray for our nation, for our communities.”

    A Prayer for Ferguson: Kevin DeYoung pens a prayer for Ferguson expounding on each line of  the Lord’s Prayer. “Be glorified through the saints–of every race and ethnicity–as we try to walk together and talk together in a more excellent way.”

    Thoughts on Ferguson: “I have come to realize that it was no more ‘the system’ when white cops pulled me over than it was ‘the system’ when a black thug robbed me at gunpoint. It was sin!” – Voddie Baucham

    Benjamin Watson on Ferguson: “At some point while I was playing or preparing to play Monday Night Football, the news broke about the Ferguson decision. After trying to figure out how I felt, I decided to write it down.”

  8. Christians in Kilns, Advent of Unity, Discerning God’s Will

    Posted on November 21st, 2014 by Jonathan


    Refiner’s Fire: Christians in the Kilns: In Pakistan’s Punjab district, 13 out of 19 brick kiln workers are Christians. They are effectively slaves, overworked and mistreated. Tragically, Christians Shahzad Masih and his pregnant wife, Shama Bibi, were killed by a mob in the brick kiln in which they worked earlier this month.

    Advent of Unity: Peter Leinhart beautifully shows how the coming of Christ was the coming of unity. “Advent marks a ‘genesis’ because in Jesus the human race gets a fresh start. Advent celebrates the Advent of humanity’s reunion, the coming of what Paul calls ‘one new man.'”

    8 Essential Components for Discerning God’s Will: “I know that some people maintain that God doesn’t have a will for our lives beyond our sanctification,” says David Sills, “but He does.” These are the eight biblical considerations he offers to those who are eager to discern their role in God’s global plan.

  9. Marriage and Hospitality

    Posted on November 14th, 2014 by Jonathan


    The King Who Never Married: “It’s an odd story when the king never marries,” says Petar Nenadov. This short post explains what, from an earthly sense, was so odd about the life of Christ. The wonder of Jesus’ singleness . . .

    Hospitality, Sacrifice, and Delight in God: “In the abstract, I cherish the idea of guests in our home. In reality, I always feel a little too busy and a little too tired. This makes hospitality, at least for me, a discipline, a theologically-driven practice.” – Jen Pollock Michel

    Showing Wedding Hospitality to Single Friends: “When we practice hospitality (I Peter 4:9), we invite others in to our space in a desire to show them they are loved and welcome. And a wedding is a wonderful chance to practice hospitality.” Catherine Parks’ post includes some really practical ways to do this.

  10. Porn & Education, Defining Marriage, Ferguson Lessons

    Posted on November 7th, 2014 by Jonathan


    Boys, Porn and Education: The headmaster of Gregory the Great Academy, an all-boys boarding school in Pennsylvania, writes about the negative effect pornography has on education.

    6th Circuit delivers a win for citizens to define marriage: In an extremely well-written opinion, judges Sutton and Cook explain their ruling to uphold four states’ ban of same-sex marriage.

    Black and White: Learning Together from Ferguson: Over at Desiring God, Thabiti Anyabwile explains that, together, we can learn a lot from what’s happening a Ferguson . . . if we are listening.

    Each of the issues discussed in this week’s Well Said – pornography, same-sex marriage, and racism – will be covered in Secret Church 15: Christ, Culture, and a Call to Action.