Want To Hang Out? And Maybe Win Logos 5?

Gospel eBooks is hosting a Google Hangout tonight on the subject of Jesus On Every Page. I’ll be interviewed by Kim from Thomas Nelson and you’ll also have a chance to join the discussion via video and social media.

Why not visit the official Facebook event page, click join, and invite your friends to come too.  That’s also where you’ll be able to ask me your questions, chat during the Hangout, and where the giveaways will happen, including the opportunity to win Logos 5! (See more details below).

In the meantime, for 48 hours only, you can buy a Kindle or eBook version of Jesus on Every Page for only $4.99.

Giveaway Information

You have to join the Hangout event to find out how to participate in the Giveaway.

GIVEAWAY #1 (5-10 winners)

A “Jesus on Every Page” digital prize pack valued at $100. Here’s what’s included in the prize pack:

  • Old Testament Introduction Course. David’s 63-lecture, 450-page introduction to (almost) every book in the Old Testament. Each Old Testament book is summarized and analyzed, with many Christ-centered applications.
  • Cross Reference – Angel of the Lord Video Curriculum and Study Guide: 10-video series on Christ’s appearances as the Angel of the Lord in the Old Testament, together with pdf of Study Guide.
  • God’s Home: A mini-novel with nine chapters that looks at the Christ-centered meaning of the Tabernacle from the perspective of a young Jewish girl, Jerusha. Also comes with study questions.
  • God’s Food. A five-part Bible Study on the Messiah-centered significance of the Jewish sacrificial system.
  • Jesus on Every Page Digital Posters: 8 Digital Posters presenting the content of the book in graphical form.
  • Jesus on Every Page Study Guide Answers.

GIVEAWAY #2 (5 Winners)

David Murray Products

Will be a David Murray physical prize pack valued at $33. Here’s what’s included in the prize pack:

GRAND PRIZE (1 Winner)


Will be the latest version of the best bible-study software available. One person will receive a LOGOS 5 Starter Pack (valued at $295).

A Rookie Pastor’s First Impressions

In this guest post, a new pastor discusses the lessons he’s learned in his first few months in pastoral ministry. 

I recently made the transition from the seminary desk to the church pulpit. It has been one of the most joyful experiences in my life, but also one of the most humbling as I have had to hit the “reset” button on my expectations and assumptions. I imagine I’m not the only seminarian turned pastor who has had to do this, nor will I be the last. So below are some of my “first impressions” to highlight things that can be neglected, but shouldn’t be.

1. Knowing the Bible: So much of the “ministry of the Word” is spontaneous and informal. It’s great (and necessary) to study and know the finer points of exegesis, but you don’t always have that luxury. Be well acquainted with the promises, commands, and threatenings of the Bible.

2. Means of Grace: Study and pray to be convinced of the efficacy of the means of grace. Reading, preaching, praying, and administering the sacraments is an act of faith!

3. Prayer: Be prepared to pray…and to pray, and to pray. Not only privately but with individuals, families, elders, deacons, in prayer meetings, hospitable rooms, and with the community—be fresh, eager, zealous, and particular.

4. Teach: In seminary we focus on preaching (and rightly so!). But teaching is an important part of being a pastor (i.e. catechism, profession of faith, prayer meeting, Sabbath schools, book studies, etc). Learn how to teach, ask questions, and facilitate discussions and not make the classroom another pulpit.

5. Recognize the wounded: I’m pretty convinced that wherever you go you’ll have to deal with sheep who have been injured by the church, or by someone in the church. In our day, it seems, most have a history with a church and many carry baggage. Learn how to gently shepherd the neglected and wounded.

6. Spiritual immaturity: Many don’t know theological distinctions or how to draw lines of contour throughout the whole of the Bible. Be prepared to shepherd a flock who need the “basic principles of the oracles of God,” and love them for it! We don’t exist for perfected saints, but to perfect the saints.

7. Avoid being opinionated: You will probably be asked your opinion on everything. It’s okay to be silent, not every opinion is worth expressing. Pray that the Lord would teach you when to speak and when to be silent. In my opinion, the more opinionated you are, the less credibility you’ll retain!

8. Be a churchman: If you’re Presbyterian, like me, you’ll be a pastor and a presbyter. You can be asked to do committee or commission work and you’re responsible to help examine, license, and ordain others for the ministry. Know how to do this by not checking yourself out of church courts in your seminary years. Attend, observe, learn, and ask questions.

9. Long-term: Don’t be nearsighted. The foundation of the church is laid, but it’s being built up. It’s okay everything isn’t perfect, people may not know like the should, elders aren’t flawless, and deacons may not be charitable. That’s the church!

10. Know your vision: You and your church exist for one reason. In the words of Cotton Mather, “Exhibit as much as you can of a glorious Christ. Yea, let the motto upon your whole ministry be: Christ is all. Let others develop the pulpit fads that come and go. Let us specialize in preaching our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Check out

The Science of What Makes an Introvert and an Extrovert
Utterly fascinating.

Six Questions that Will Radically Change Your Marriage
So simple. So obvious. So neglected.

What Does Regeneration Have To Do With Evangelism?
Tom Ascol explores how our view of regeneration impacts the way we do evangelism.

The Psychology of Happiness
A Christian psychologist wrestles with the most common question in her practice “How can I be happy?”

Redefining What A Bible College Is And Can Be
The only time I wish I was a teenager again is when I read about Reformation Bible College.

Happy Birthday Dear
I believe R C Sproul Jr.’s profound reflections on the loss of his wife and daughter will one day be gathered together into a book and become a Christian classic.

Check out

What advice would you give to an abused wife?
Phil Monroe: “Sadly, pastors and church leaders have not always dealt well with victims of domestic abuse. One of the reasons for this is that when victims get the courage to speak up, they are often frazzled, emotional, confused, and no longer able to be flexible. In contrast, the offenders are often self-righteous, well defended, logical, and armed with scripture to point out the sin of their victim spouses.”

This is your brain on Facebook
The social affirmation that comes when people like your status updates is addictive, which might help explain why people tend to spend so much time on Facebook.

What Zambia and Russia teach us about Homosexuality and Gay Rights Debate
Thabiti makes some very important points in this post.

The Joy of Praising Others
Interview with Sam Crabtree, author of the excellent book, Practicing Affirmation.

Sexual Immorality and Five Other Reasons People Reject Christianity
People don’t just reject Christianity for intellectual reasons (HT: Alex Chediak).

The Laborers are Few
Hope you are following Tim Challies’ visit to the poorest parts of Scotland where 20 Schemes is doing such vital Gospel work. Here are the two previous posts: A Dispatch From Edinburgh, and What is a Scheme? It’s heartbreaking to see a nation with such a blessed spiritual heritage in such a terrible state.

12 Ways Sin Helps Us Understand the Bible

Is there any greater help to interpreting and understanding the Bible than a deep sense of one’s own sin?

1. When I feel my sinfulness, I am much more motivated to search the Scriptures for grace to help in my time of need.

2. When I am convicted of my sin, I doubt my own wisdom and rely more upon the Holy Spirit.

3. When I see my sin, I understand the character of God better – His frightening holiness and His refreshing love.

4. When I’m confronted with my sinful inability, I have no doubts about my need of sovereign electing grace.

5. When I grasp how bad my best deeds are, salvation by faith without works becomes fascinating and utterly compelling.

6. When I’m utterly condemned, all new perspectives on justification look ridiculous and I get a far deeper insight into the old but ever new perspective of justification by faith alone.

7. When I mourn my spiritual deadness, the resurrection of Christ is not only a doctrine but my only source of life.

8. When I sense my immeasurable guilt, I have no difficulty whatsoever in grasping the existence and eternality of hell.

9. When I absorb the enormity of my enmity, substitution is no longer a theory of the atonement but my only and enthralling hope.

10. When I see the untrustworthiness of my heart and mind, the inerrancy of Scripture becomes a matter of life or death.

11. When I perceive the deceitfulness of my own heart, I understand so much better how to minister the Word to other similar hearts.

12. When I behold the ugliness and vileness of my sin, my eyes are opened to behold more of the glory and beauty of Christ.

A deep sense of sin gives deep insights into the deep things of the Bible