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:
Kevin DeYoung, Crazy Busy: A (Mercifully) Short Book About a (Really) Big Problem. Crossway, 2013. pp. 31-32:
"The presence of extreme busyness in our lives may point to deeper problems - a pervasive people-pleasing, a restless ambition, a malaise of meaninglessness. 'Busyness serves as a kind of existential reassurance, a hedge against emptiness,' writes Tim Kreider in his viral article, "The 'Busy' Trap," for the New York Times. 'Obviously your life cannot possibly be silly or trivial or meaningless if you are so busy, completely booked, in demand every hour of the day.' The greatest danger with busyness is that there may be greater dangers you never have time to consider" (bold emphasis added).
D.A. Carson, A Call to Spiritual Reformation: Priorities from the Prayers of Paul. Baker Academic, 1992. p. 33:
"...effective prayer is the fruit of a relationship with God, not a technique for acquiring blessings."
Alan J. Thompson, The Acts of the Risen Lord Jesus: Luke's Account of God's Unfolding Plan. NSBT. InterVarsity Press, 2011. p. 48:
"...a major emphasis of Jesus' teaching was that the kingdom of God had already arrived. The kingdom of God had arrived, said Jesus, because the kingdom of God was present in his ministry. Because he, the King of the kingdom was here, entrance to the kingdom was through response to him. The actions of Jesus presented further evidence for his claims concerning the arrival of God's kingdom. The natural question after Jesus' departure then would be, 'What about the kingdom now?' Luke tells Theophilus in the first verse in Acts that his book was all about what Jesus began to do and teach. The implication of these opening words in Acts is that he is now going to write about all that Jesus continues to do and teach. Thus we may get even more specific about what the book of Acts is about. Luke's Gospel was written to provide assurance to Theophilus about the person and work of Jesus, that God's purposes were accomplished through him, that Jesus' suffering and death were anticipated in Scripture, and that Jesus brought about the inauguration of God's kingdom, the fulfillment of God's saving promises. The book of Acts, therefore, is about the continuation of those saving promises, the kingdom of God, through the Lord Jesus. Jesus is still the mediator of that kingdom, the one who administers those saving promises and the one who carries out God's saving plan."
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