Seahawk's Derrick Coleman, "outsiders" and the gospel

This short commercial about Derrick Coleman's (Seattle Seahawks) journey to the NFL has been getting a lot of attention leading up to the Super Bowl. Why? Because he's been deaf since he was three years old. His story is incredible and deeply moving, whether you're a football fan or not. And it got me thinking. Why do we love stories like this? Outsiders becoming insiders. Underdogs coming behind for the win. The weak overcoming the strong. The powerless out-performing the powerful. The bullied overcoming the bully. Clearly these stories are powerful, but why? Because deep down we know we are "outsiders" and remind us of our deep felt desire to be "inside". You may think I'm reading too much into this, but hang with me.

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The ultimate issue underlying the abortion debate (and how to learn more)

Yesterday marked the 41st anniversary of the 1973 Supreme Court decision known as Roe v Wade. The annual March for Life rally - the world's largest anti-abortion rally - takes place on this date every year, nationally, in Washington DC and, locally, at many state capitols. This issue, like no other, evokes the strongest of emotions that make it particularly difficult to objectively consider. Even more, the rhetoric around this debate, such as "pro-choice" or "pro-life" confuses many. Polls indicate that most people do not even understand the basic differences that lie at the heart of this issue and just want it to go away. 

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Former abortion doctor explains late-term abortion to Congress

On May 23rd, 2013, former abortionist (and now pro-life advocate) Dr. Anthony Levantino gave the following congressional testimony regarding the nature of late-term abortions. Early in his career as an OBGYN he performed 1,200 abortions before becoming pro-life. As a forewarning, his description is gruesome. Yet, it is exactly this testimony that must be more fully understood and widely known. There will be a time America looks back in horror that we permitted this as long as we have. You can read the full manuscript here

HT: Justin Taylor

David Wells on how we play god with God

We have turned to a God that we can use rather than to a God we must obey; we have turned to a God who will fulfill all our needs rather than to a God before whom we must surrender our rights to ourselves. He is a God for us, for our satisfaction—not because we have learned to think of him this way through Christ but because we have learned to think of him this way through the marketplace. In the marketplace, everything is for us, for our pleasure, for our satisfaction, and we have come to assume that it must be so in the church as well. And so we transform the God of mercy into a God who is at our mercy.
— David Wells, God in the Wasteland, 114

The real ending to Les Miserables (and life)

The real ending to Les Miserables (and life)

The most recent film adaptation of Les Miserables, by Victor Hugo, came out last week. It is a great work that largely follows the theatrical storyline. Though most are familiar with the musical, Les Mis was originally a 1200+ page novel. I read it for the first time this year. It is probably the best book, outside the Bible, that I've read. It's definitely an investment of time and effort (some parts seem needlessly long, but do contribute to the overall feel of the storyline), but worth it.

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Helpful post-election words from Martyn Lloyd-Jones

The thing that makes the Christian message a Gospel is that it is a proclamation of the good news. It is not just topical comments on the latest scandal in the newspapers or the latest bit of news. It is not that we spend our time in telling kings and princes and presidents and prime ministers how they ought to be running their countries and how they ought to be solving the international problem. We are not qualified to do so . . . What was it the Apostle preached about? Did the Apostle preach politics to these people? Did he say to them that it is about time you banded yourselves together and raised an army to rid yourself of the yoke of the Roman Empire? Did he object to taxation? Did he protest against the various things that were happening? That was not his message at all.
— Quoted in Alistair Begg, Preacing for God's Glory, p26

Reflections (and help) on Halloween

To be honest, I’m indifferent about Halloween. On the one hand, costumes and candy are part of God’s common grace extended to all people to be enjoyed. (Who, after all, would be quick to turn down a roll of Smarties?) Its also one of the few holidays where people actually visit your home (albeit dressed as zombies) without any effort on your part. It’s a creative, relational and tasty holiday.

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Schaeffer on influencing society

As Christians we are not only to know the right world view, the world view that tells us the truth of what is, but consciously to act upon that world view so as to influence society in all its parts and facets across the whole spectrum of life, as much as we can to the extent of our individual and collective ability.
— Francis Schaeffer, How Should We Then Live? 187