Here's a sampling of some of the things I've been reading and reviewing this week. The hope is that these bite-sized sections of books, articles, blog posts, etc will stand on their own and be beneficial in-and-of-themselves. But I also hope that some of you will like these excerpts enough that they pull you into the larger work from which they've been taken.
Let's start sampling:
Ray Ortlund in The Gospel: How the Church Portrays the Beauty of Christ. Crossway, 2014, pp. 15-16:
"This good news [of the gospel] is more than good vibes. This message has specific content. It can and must be defined, and from the Bible alone. Every generation must pick up their Bibles and rediscover the gospel afresh for themselves and rearticulate the ancient message in their own words for their own times. We are in just such a time of active gospel rediscovery, and it is exciting to be involved.
"Here is the essential message Bible-believing people rally around:
"God, through the perfect life, atoning death, and bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ, rescues all his people from the wrath of God into peace with God, with a promise of the full restoration of his created order forever - all to the praise of the glory of his grace."
Kevin DeYoung in The Hole in Our Holiness: Filling the Gap between Gospel Passion and the Pursuit of Godliness. Crossway, 2012, pp. 94, 96, 100:
"Union with Christ may be the most important doctrine you've never heard of....[This] union isn't physical, but theological. Union with Christ implies three things: solidarity (Christ as the second Adam is our representative), transformation (Christ by the Holy Spirit changes us from the inside out), and communion (Christ abides with us as our God)....Apart from our union with Christ every effort to imitate Christ, no mater how noble and inspired at the outset, inevitably leads to legalism and spiritual defeat. But once you understand the doctrine of union with Christ, you see that God doesn't ask us to attain to what we're not. He only calls us to accomplish what already is. The pursuit of holiness is not a quixotic effort to do just what Jesus did. It's the fight to live out the life that has already been made alive in Christ."
Philip Yancey, "Farewell to the Golden Age: How Publishing Has Changed" in Books and Culture. Web Exclusive - July 2014.
"...we face a revolution in reading not unlike the one Gutenberg introduced almost 700 years ago. Nowadays authors are coached on 'building your brand' more than on improving their writing. Publishers care more about website stats and Twitter followers than the quality of an author's work.
"Frankly, I'm glad I'm as old as I am [Yancey says]. It's been fun living through publishing's golden age. I'll happily stick with the 'deep reading' experience. Nothing gives me more satisfaction than browsing through the books in my office. They're my friends—marked up, dog-eared, highlighted, a kind of spiritual and intellectual journal—in a way that my Kindle reader will never be."
Click here to be taken to the Books & Culture website where you can search for the full article from which this excerpt was taken, or find other articles dealing with "books" and "culture" from an evangelical perspective.
Christian. Husband. Father. Pastor. Learner. Contributor. Reader.