Saturday, April 20, 2013

Getting Back in the Game + Resource Round Up

Getting Back into Blogging

After taking a break from the blog for a couple of months, I thought it was time to decide whether it would be best to shut things down or to get started back up. Well, after prayer and reflection, I've decided that I've got too much good stuff going on not to share some insights with anyone who might be interested.

So, going forward, I plan to write on a few of the following themes and topics:

First, Book Reviews. Since the beginning of 2013, I've read more than 20 books and have at least another 20 on the coffee table, waiting to be read. So, I'd like to share some of the incredibly helpful resources and accompanying insights gleaned.

In addition, our church has held or hosted several seminars and conferences since January: the Winter Bible Conference, the PresWIC Annual Women's Conference, our own Women's Retreat and the OneCry University Event for the University of Delaware campus ministries. Great teaching, awesome fellowship, and amazing worship was enjoyed by all who attended these events. If I can pass on even a speck of what I've learned from each of these, I'm sure it will help me and hopefully someone else...

Another thing I plan to do is a periodic round up of article links containing what I've found to be the most thought-provoking and helpful. The bottom of this post will kick things off.

And finally, I'd like to generate a few articles that address my own thinking about how the Church publicly interacts with some of our more pressing contemporary issues.

 To kick things off, below is a round up of some good articles that I've come across lately. I hope you'll enjoy them!

Resource Round Up

From HeadHeartHand: The Problem with Mental Illness David Murray looks at mental illness from both sides: the disease and the sin. The complex mix of physical, mental, and spiritual aspects that are intertwined are examined.

Tim Keller discusses one of the biggest obstacles to revival inside and outside of our churches in an Q&A session with The Gospel Coalition (his answer is probably not what you expect)

From The Aquila Report, T. David Gordon writes about The Politics of Rights and Ressentiment (no, that's not a typo :) Nietzsche introduced the French term to us - you'll have to read the article to find out how it all fits together. It's a very interesting and helpful way of looking at this issue. Enjoy.

Clearly, this IS The Most Important Message. Why do we often avoid it, miss it, or assume it? It's always great to be reminded (can anyone say Gospel Amnesia?).

Jim Hamilton at For His Renown challenges our contemporary Evangelical assumptions that The Song of Songs is primarily about human love in Intended Allegory. From his summary paragraph:
"The Song of Songs is a poetic summary and interpretation of the Bible’s big story: the descendant of David—king of Israel about whom the promises of 2 Samuel 7 were made .... who initiated the new covenant between himself and his bride, the church, and who will return for the grand consummation when the Bride herself, the new Jerusalem, will descend from heaven having the glory of God (Rev 21:9–11)."
Call me boring or a prude, but that sounds way, way more awesome, encouraging, comforting, fulfilling and powerful than the literalistic view that sees The Song of Songs as only about or primarily about human relationship.

The doctrine and reality of sanctification should be a great source of joy to us - not taken for granted. Great article from Rebecca VanDoodewaard!

Towards a More Informed Gender Debate by Bart Gingerich who graduated from Patrick Henry College and serves as a Research Assistant at the Institute on Religion and Democracy. These are his key points, but make sure you read his article, as he does a thorough and helpful job of building them out for us:
1. Make sure your historical picture is accurate.
2. Eschew Whiggery.
3. Beware the bandying of “Biblical.”
4. Look at how you view human society before asserting a position.
5. Avoid caricatures.

I guess that's a pretty good start. Hopefully, I'll have a chance to get some of my book reviews going next... Thanks for reading.