Free E-Book Alert – Gospel Wakefulness by Jared Wilson

The fine folks at Crossway are making this e-book a free download to those willing to fill out a short survey.  Here’s a description of the book:

Do you ever feel like your desire for God is waning? Are you numb to the routine of church? What does it mean to be truly awakened to the wonder of the gospel?

Jared Wilson contends that we must be regularly engaged and engaging others with the good news of the sacrificing, dying, rising, exalted person of Jesus Christ. Wilson reminds us of the death-proof, fail-proof King of kings who is before all things and in all things and holding all things together, and of the Spirit’s power to quicken our hearts and captivate our imaginations. The message of Gospel Wakefulness will make numbness the exception (rather than the norm) and reawaken us to the multifaceted brilliance of the gospel.

Take the survey here.



Together for the Gospel Notes, part 1

So a few weeks ago now I was privileged to attend the Together for the Gospel conference in Louisville, KY.  As I reflect back at the great messages I sat under, I thought I would open up my notebook and share a few gems with you.

Mark Dever

“Holiness is freedom; freedom from the terrible taskmaster of sin.”

“God’s righteousness if the moral core of His Character.”

“Evangelism is not selling the unsaved on benefits they already want.”

“The church is not so much about a growing number of people as it is a number of growing people.”

“Today’s sermons are preparing your people to pick tomorrow’s pastors.”

“We catechize our congregations by what we pray about.”

“Pray that the people who only pretend to believe in God get bored with it.”

“If you are not at odds with sin you are not at home with Jesus.” – John Piper

H.B. Charles

“Christianized worldliness does not make the world Christian.”

“The message of the Cross is Christ crucified.”

“The wisdom of God is found in the Word of God.”

“Man cannot think his way to God.”

David Platt

“Three Primary Offenses of the Church:  (1)  Eagerly anticipating future salvation while ignoring present sin, (2) indulging in worship while ignoring injustice and (3) carrying on their religion while refusing to repent.”

“Slavery is not a stain in history but a scar that is still healing.”


Listen to my special T4G podcasts here:

Together for the Gospel, Part 1

Together for the Gospel, Part 2 – The Interviews

Together for the Gospel, Part 3 – Preachers in a Car

Free E-Book Alert – The Truth of the Cross by R.C. Sproul

For this week only, in recognition of Easter, the fine folks at Ligonier Ministries are giving away digital copies of R.C. Sproul’s the Truth of the Cross. It’s actually a book I am going to recommend on the next Basic Bible Podcast.  Here’s the description:

In this book, Dr. R.C. Sproul surveys the great work accomplished by Jesus Christ through His crucifixion—the redemption of God’s people. Dr. Sproul considers the atonement from numerous angles and shows conclusively that the cross was absolutely necessary if anyone was to be saved.

Opening the Scriptures, Dr. Sproul shows that God Himself provided salvation by sending Jesus Christ to die on the cross, and the cross was always God’s intended method by which to bring salvation. The Truth of the Cross is an uncompromising reminder that the atonement of Christ is an absolutely essential doctrine of the Christian faith, one that should be studied and understood by all believers.

Get your free copy here.

Book Review – Bearded Gospel Men

51u0kkqydsl-_sx335_bo1204203200_Title: Bearded Gospel Men: The Epic Quest for Manliness and Godliness
Author: Jared Brock and Aaron Alford
Publisher: Thomas Nelson
Publishing Year: 2017
Pages: 304
My Rating: 4 out of 5 (1 meaning I hated the book, 5 meaning I loved the book)

Disclaimer: This book was provided by the publisher for review. I was under no obligation to offer a favorable review.

Bearded Gospel Men is a 31 day devotional written by Jared Brock and Aaron Alford. The book presents you with a Bible verse and quote for each day along with a short biographical sketch of an influential leader from church history. Of course all of these leaders are men, and men with beards. This is followed by a prayer and contemplative questions that help you carefully think through the material in an applicable way.

As someone with an appreciation of church history, I found this book both fascinating and hilarious. If you enjoy memes on social media, you will enjoy this book. The humor sprinkled throughout every page keeps you interested but the spiritual meat of the book keeps you engaged. While I was already familiar with most of the men featured, I still learned quite a bit I did not already know.

While I would recommend this book, it obviously has an intended, limited audience. There is quite a bit of truth we all can learn from, but the constant jokes about masculinity and beards would probably turn away most ladies. I would also caution that the book has more of a wide-spread Evangelical appeal and would not be as “reformed” as would like. Yet, the book is still worth the read.

Purchase the book for yourself here.

Free E-Book Alert – Calvin on the Christian Life by Michael Horton


The fine folks at Crossway are once again offering a free book, this time by one of my favorite authors – Michael Horton.  By the way, Dr. Horton has agreed to come on my podcast this month!

Here’s the description of the book:

John Calvin, a man adored by some and maligned by others, stands as a legendary figure in Christian history. In Calvin on the Christian Life, professor Michael Horton offers us fresh insights into the Reformer’s personal piety and practical theology by allowing Calvin to speak in his own words.

Drawing not only from his Institutes and biblical commentaries, but also from lesser-known tracts, treatises, and letters, this book will deepen your understanding of Calvin’s theology and ministry by exploring the heart of his spiritual life: confident trust and unwavering joy in the sovereign grace of God.

Part of the Theologians on the Christian Life series.

Download the book by filling out this quick survey.

This and That

A Word of Empathy, Warning, and Counsel for “Narrow” Complementarians – Christians, furthermore, should know how to adjust their volume depending on whether the matter at hand is a straight-line law issue or a jagged-line wisdom issue. I’ll raise my voice—metaphorically speaking—over abortion. I’ll speak more softly in the tougher matters of policy or ethics. Why? Because I recognize that my calculations are just that, mine, not God’s. I arrived at those conclusions only after several sharp bends in the road. – Jonathan Leeman

This and That

Repenting of Confirmation Bias Christianity – The reason we fall into confirmation bias politically is not essentially a political problem. It is a human problem, which is to say, it is a sin problem—which is to say, it is a problem of self-interest and self-worship. The truth is, you and I are prone to conducting our entire lives along the narratives constructed from confirmation bias. – Jared C. Wilson

How to Teach Boys to Respect Women – Do not let the boys and young men around you ever, even for a millisecond, see you waving away or justifying sexual predation, misogynistic comments, or violence against women by a sports figure because he plays for your team or a politician because he belongs to your party or an entertainer because he makes you laugh. Your hypocrisy cannot only point the next generation away from Jesus, but may also point them toward the way of predation. – Russell Moore

9 John Calvin Facts You (Probably) Didn’t Know – He had good friends like Philip Melanchthon, Heinrich Bullinger, Martin Bucer, and William Farrel (for a while). Yes, he had some good friends. But considering his personality, making friends didn’t always come easy for Calvin. He sometimes bullied, intimated, and manipulated people. But some of these same people stayed loyal to him, even being there for him on his deathbed. – David Qaoud

3 Reasons Every Christian Needs to Use the Creeds – When our beliefs are written down and we have them informed by those who have gone before us, we safeguard ourselves from our generations peculiarities and from the tyranny of leaders who would abuse their authority. Like roads on a highway, they keep us from driving onto terrain that will destroy our tires or, as Paul says, to prevent us from shipwrecking our faith (1. Tim. 1:19). – Timothy W. Massaro

Billy Graham, flawed social justice warrior, RIP – I will take on young Graham over a hundred would-be experts on Bahnsen who geek out over doctrinal minutiae while sitting on their hands. Graham actually did it, and he did it when it was tough, and when it mattered; and that’s what we should remember. Graham, when he was at his best, was not just a preacher of the Gospel. He was a social justice warrior in his message and his actions, and when he did it, he did it the right way. – Joel McDurmon

On the Passing of Billy Graham

This morning a giant went to be with His Lord.  Evangelist Billy Graham died at the age of 99 leaving behind him a rich history of faithfulness to Christ.

I never had the opportunity to see him in person.  The closest I ever came is that his son Franklin once waved hello to me at a rally he held in Madison, WI last summer.  Yet, the well-known evangelist had a profound impact on my life.  My Dad was led to Christ during a Billy Graham crusade.  It was because of this that I was raised in a Christian home and was exposed to the gospel at an early age.  My Dad and I would watch many televised crusades together along with several movies produced by the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association such as Joni and Time to Run.

Thank you, Dr. Graham, for your passion for the gospel and commitment to the Kingdom.  Someday we will meet around the throne of God worshipping the savior you’ve been pointing us to for so long.

My Interview with Tullian Tchividjian

I am really excited about the latest episode of my podcast as it features an interview with a man who has profoundly influenced my thought, Tullian Tchividjian.  I know for some the very name itself will be a turn-off due to his past, but this is certainly worth a listen.  If anyone can tell you about God’s grace to the rejected, it is Tullian.

So listen here ––The-Gospel-of-Grace

Or, now you can listen on SoundCloud –

On the Passing of Dr. Bobby Roberson

This past week saw unspeakable tragedy.  The school shooting in South Florida was a horrific act of treachery that is becoming way too common.  But, lost in headlines from last week was the passing of Dr. Bobby Roberson, the pastor of the Gospel Light Baptist Church in Walkertown, NC.

Brother Bobby, as he was known to many, was the pastor there at Gospel Light for over sixty years though his ministry extended far beyond that church.  I had the pleasure of meeting him on several different occasions, mostly Bible conference settings.  Two things immediately jump out about him.  First, he had a clear passion to win souls to Christ.  It was what drove him.  He loved the lost and sought every opportunity to give them the gospel.  Second, he was a pastor to pastors.  He strove to be an encouragement to those in gospel ministry.  He wanted to be the shot in the arm to pastors throughout the country to keep them going amid difficult ministries.

My first encounter with Dr. Roberson was back in college while I attended Crown College in Powell, Tennessee.  During Bible Conference back in 1997 I believe he preached a powerful message entitled, “Why I Can’t Quit.”  While today I could quibble with some theological aspects of the message, it was one of those sermons that still comes to my mind from time to time.  I probably still have the cassette recording of the message somewhere.  I can still hear groveling voice proclaiming, “I’ve got a debt to pay.”  It was a powerful message to keep preaching Christ.

Brother Bobby left a lasting legacy and will now for the rest of eternity be worshipping Christ alongside many of the people he helped lead into the Kingdom.

Five Ways Dr. Bobby Roberson Influenced Me by Paul Chappell

Tribute to An Encourager by Scott Pauley