Archive for May, 2011
Wednesday is June 1 and June 1 begins our 90 days of listening through the New Testament together. For an overview of the plan, visit the landing page or download the brochure.
In Sunday’s message, “Partners in Crime,” Ryan pointed out how normal it was in the first century for believers to hear the word read out loud, evident when Paul wrote in Colossians 4:16, “when this letter has been read among you, have it also read in the church of the Laodiceans.” Hearing was the main way that Christians received the Word of God for many centuries. God, in His wisdom, chose to reveal Himself in words at a time before the printing press was invented. We can assume, then, that hearing is not only a legitimate but an important means of receiving God’s Word. It also happens to be particularly neglected in our time.
Some will read the Scriptures out loud, perhaps with their spouse or children. Others will listen in the car or at the gym with an iPod. If you’d prefer to read instead of hear the Scriptures, that’s just fine, but listen if you can.
Last week we introduced the plan on the blog and outlined a number of ways to obtain audio. Visit our 90 Days Through the New Testament landing page for more details, including instructions for how to obtain audio, a listening schedule, and help for how to pray as you read.
In the days ahead our schedule page will be updated with audio links all the way through August. For now, here are links for audio in the ESV narrated by Max McLean through the month of June using Bible Gateway’s helpful audio player.
- June 1 Matthew 1-4
- June 2 Matthew 5-6
- June 3 Matthew 7-9
- June 4 Matthew 10-11
- June 5 Matthew 12-13
- June 6 Matthew 14-16
- June 7 Matthew 17-19
- June 8 Matthew 20-21
- June 9 Matthew 22-23
- June 10 Matthew 24-25
- June 11 Matthew 26
- June 12 Matthew 27-28
- June 13 Mark 1-3
- June 14 Mark 4-5
- June 15 Mark 6-7
- June 16 Mark 8-9
- June 17 Mark 10-11
- June 18 Mark 12-13
- June 19 Mark 14
- June 20 Mark 15-16
- June 21 Luke 1-2
- June 22 Luke 3-4
- June 23 Luke 5-6
- June 24 Luke 7-8
- June 25 Luke 9-10
- June 26 Luke 11-12
- June 27 Luke 13-15
- June 28 Luke 16-18
- June 29 Luke 19-20
- June 30 Luke 21-22
This Sunday, Ron introduced a plan for DSC to listen through the New Testament together in 90 days.
With the exception of Sunday mornings, the majority of our Bible intake is through reading, made wonderfully possible by the wide availability of the printed Scriptures. But this means we don’t hear the Word of God read very often. Passages like Romans 10:17 remind us of how normal it was to speak of hearing the Word of God during the time when the Scriptures were written, “So faith comes by hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.”
So, from June 1 to August 31, we will listen to the New Testament together for an average of 12 minutes a day, with July 1 and August 1 as catch-up days. In addition, this summer’s Sunday sermons will be a series of New Testament book overviews which follow the books we’re reading together.
Of course, you can certainly read through the New Testament with us, but if you do plan to listen, here are some ways to obtain audio:
- MP3 CD from Faith Comes by Hearing – These are available at no cost at the Information Center and through the church office.
- ESV Online – Listen for free on a computer or mobile device
- Faith Comes by Hearing – Download audio for the ESV
- Bible.is – Listen for free on a computer or mobile device
- ESV Hear the Word Audio Bible – Purchase MP3s from Crossway for 49.99
- Mouth – Read the New Testament out loud.
If you have never listened to the New Testament before, we encourage you to try this out as a fresh way to integrate God’s Word into your daily routine. This is good for spouses to do together, and it’s good for parents to do with children.
Brochures and reading plans are available at the Information Center and through the church office. We will also post a pdf of the series brochure in a follow up post next week on the blog.
In the gospel of Matthew, Jesus made it abundantly clear that we won’t know the day or hour of his return until he returns: Concerning “the day or the hour,” Jesus says, “no one knows” (Matthew 24:36, 25:13)
So how is it that Harold Camping and his followers could so certainly and earnestly expect the return of Christ on exactly May 21? How could they say, “The Bible guarantees it”? Can the Bible really be understood, or is it just a bag of unclarity and contradiction?
Ahead of May 21, W. Robert Godfrey published a five part series explaining how Camping reads the Bible and how Camping came to read the Bible that way: “The End of the World According to Harold Camping” Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5.
In Part 1, Godfrey shows the connection between Camping’s educational background and his method for reading the Bible:
Camping was a bright and studious man who had been educated as an engineer. In the 1950s he owned a very successful construction company which built churches as well as other significant buildings. This educational background is critical to understanding Camping. His education was not in the liberal arts or theology. He had not been prepared to read literature or ancient texts. He knew no Greek or Hebrew. He was not formally introduced to the study of theology. His reading of the Bible, as it evolved over the decades, reflected his training in engineering. He reads the Bible like a mathematical or scientific textbook.
In addition, Timothy Dalrymple has written a helpful response to those who propagated and believed this false teaching, “A Letter To Harold Camping and Those Who Expected Judgment Day.”
In light of all this, it’s good for us to remember that there is nonetheless a day and an hour when Jesus will return. Until then, according to Matthew 24-25 we are to be wakeful, ready, faithful, wise, and watchful for his coming.
In Sunday’s sermon, “Work unto the Lord,” Ryan preached from Colossians 3:22-4:1, where Paul addresses the relationship between slaves and masters. In the first half of his message, Ryan developed three points at length to clarify what Paul did and did not mean by addressing “slaves” and “masters”:
- Roman slavery was not exactly the same thing as American slavery
- These categories (slave/master) are descriptive not prescriptive
- What is prescriptive in this passage goes beyond cultural norms
Both are image bearers. In God’s sovereignty, both have a unique station in life. Both have the same Master in heaven. Both are serving the Lord Christ.
We do well to understand the meaning of “slaves” and “masters” in Paul’s context and listening to Ryan develop his three points will help. But we can’t miss the significance of Paul’s instructions for us. In our immediate context, this text speaks into the boss/employee relationship, even if the parallel is not exact. In whatever our station, we are to work obediently, honorably, heartily, worshipfully, expectantly, and with love.
But Paul’s instructions also speak to our concept of vocation itself. In his article, “Hands On,” Doug Wilson thoughtfully fills out Bible’s teaching on the essential dignity of all work:
All craftsmanship, diligence, and hard-working hands are from the Lord. The work might be close and tight, like cunning embroidery, or it might take place on a large and grand scale, like designing and building a suspension bridge. . . . Hands on the keyboard writing a poem or a novel. Hands framing a house. Hands on a drafting table, designing the next generation of space shuttle. Hands under the hood of a car. Hands creating a glorious watercolor. Hands ministering to the sick. Hands picking up the living room. Hands making love. Hands holding a scalpel and removing a tumor. Hands skillfully typesetting a book. Hands pushing a lawn mower. Hands buttoning up a small child’s coat. Hands cutting hair. Hands cradling a hunting rifle. Hands arranging a table setting and bringing a platter of hot food. Hands positioned perfectly on a basketball while playing “horse” in the driveway. Hands laying brick. . . . We are to give ourselves to handiwork because we are His handiwork.
On the subject of vocation, we recommend the following books:
- God at Work: Your Christian Vocation in All of Life, Gene Edward Veith, Jr.
- Luther on Vocation, Gustaf Wingren
- Redeeming the Time: A Christian Approach to Work and Leisure, Leland Ryken
- Business for the Glory of God: The Bible’s Teaching on the Moral Goodness of Business, Wayne Grudem
Also, a number sermons are available for download on the topic of “work and vocation” on the Messages part on this site.
We’re excited to share about the launch of a new website for, Redemption Church, DSC’s first church plant. This site is very well done. Lord willing, Redemption Church will launch on January 22, 2012, which is only eight months away.
Help get the word out about Redemption Church’s new site by participating in their recently announced book giveaway:
In celebration of our new website and our up and coming church plant we want to give you the chance to win some great books, and for locals a pair of David Crowder tickets.
Over the next few months you will have the chance to win any or all of these books. All you have to do is like our FaceBook page, follow us on Twitter, subscribe to our RSS Feed, or share about this giveaway on your blog. Once you have done that fill out the form below and we will pick a our first winner in one week.
This week’s giveaway is a Tru Tone ESV Study Bible.
Here’s a list of all the books we are giving away:
Christ Formed in You by Brian Hedges
Church Planter by Darrin Patrick
Collected Writings on Scripture by D.A. Carson
Desiring God by John Piper
ESV Bible Commemorative Edition
For the City by Darrin Patrick & Matt Carter
God is the Gospel by John Piper
Holman Christian Standard Bible
In My Place Condemned He Stood by J.I. Packer and Mark Dever
Note to Self by Joe Thorn
One to One Bible Reading by David Helm
Proclaiming a Cross-Centered Theology by Mark Dever et. al.
Red like Blood by Joe Coffey and Bob Bevington
Redemption by Mike Wilkerson
Reverberation by Jonathan Leeman
Taking Hold of God by Joel Beeke and Brian Najapfour
Total Church by Tim Chester and Steve Timmis
If you have questions about DSC’s church planting strategy, visit our new Church Planting FAQ page.
In Sunday’s sermon, “A Home Pleasing to The Lord,” Ryan preached from Colossians 3:20-21, where Paul gives these instructions to children and to parents: “Children, obey your parents in everything, for this pleases the Lord. Fathers, do not provoke your children, lest they become discouraged.”
At the conclusion of the service, Ryan referenced an article by Matt Schmucker, “39 Lessons, 20 Tips and 10 ‘Dont’s’ For Parenting.” Print, read, and hand this article around. Here are a few of Schmucker’s lessons, tips, and don’ts, to whet your appetite for this wise counsel.
Lessons About Ourselves:
- To be a faithful steward of your children you must abide in Christ (John 15:5: “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”).
- “Trickle down theory” – Mom’s daily devotion naturally trickles down to encouragement and instruction in the Lord for the children.
- Not listening to your children causes you to misjudge them (James 1:19-20: “Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires”).
20 More Tips for Raising God-honoring Children
- The saying goes, “When mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.” We believe daddy is actually the problem. From a complementarian’s viewpoint one needs to conclude the above saying with, “And if daddy ain’t happy in the Lord, ain’t nobody happy.”
- In a stay-at-home-mom scenario, dad tends to back away from discipline when mom has been with the children all day. In one sense this is wise as he has not observed the rhythm and rhyme of the day. However, dad needs to catch up and jump in.
- Talk to both good and not-so-good parents; you’ll learn lessons from both.
Ways To (Wrongly) Provoke Your Children
- Make it a habit to discipline your child while angry.
- Make it a point to scold your child – especially in public. Mockery and ridicule work well.
- Deliberately embarrass your child in front of his/her friends. Name calling really gets their attention.
Of course, our text in Colossians lined up nicely with Mother’s Day. We’re grateful for God’s wise design for the family and for mothers. For the very reason that motherhood is honorable, motherhood can also be a difficult subject. For some women who have lost children, or long to be mothers, Mother’s Day is a reminder of loss and unfulfilled longings. This is a reality in a fallen world, and one Christians mean to address with the comfort of the gospel. On this subject, Wendy Alsup has a helpful post for all us us, “For Moms, Former Moms, and Wannabe Moms.”
Finally, here are a number of helpful resources on parenting, many of them available at the Resource Center:
- Shepherding a Child’s Heart, Tedd Tripp
- Instructing a Child’s Heart, Tedd and Margy Tripp
- Your Child’s Profession of Faith, Dennis Gundersen
- Hints for Parents, Gardiner Spring and Tedd Tripp
- Gospel Powered Parenting: How the Gospel Shapes and Transforms Parenting, William Farley
- Big Truths for Young Hearts: Teaching and Learning the Greatness of God, Bruce Ware
- Age of Opportunity: A Biblical Guide to Parenting Teens, Paul Tripp
- Pastor Dad, Mark Driscol
Clarus is Latin for clear, bright, or radiant. From April 29-May 1, believers from Albuquerque, NM, and the surrounding Southwest region gathered at Desert Springs Church for Clarus ’11, a Regional Conference of The Gospel Coalition.
This year’s theme, “Scripture: God Speaks,” focused our attention on the subject of the Bible, God’s Word written. Our speakers, G.K. Beale and Carl Trueman, both professors at Westminster Theological Seminary, approached this theme from a variety of angles: what Scripture says about itself, how Christians have understood the nature of Scripture throughout history, the effects of meditating on Scripture, the need to defend Scripture, how the Scriptures persevere us in suffering, how Jesus fulfilled Scripture, why and how Scripture is meant to be preached, and how Scripture shapes Christian marriage.
- “The Effects of Meditating on God’s Word” (Ps. 1)
- “How to Guard the Good Deposit of Scripture” (2 Tim. 1:13)
- “The Centrality of Scripture in Marriage”
- “Receiving and Resounding God’s Word” (1 Thess. 1:6-10)
- “The Prophetic Word: What Preaching Is (and Is Not)”
- “Scripture’s Authority: An Ancient Doctrine”
- “A Clear and Present Word: Luther and the Clarity of Scripture”
- “Like Sheep without a Shepherd” (Mark 6:30-44)
While the heart of Clarus are these sessions, conference attendees interacted with a number of organizations and went home with books gifted from five publishers. We’re thankful for their partnership and commend these Scripture-grounded ministries to you.
Finally, some pictures. The following photos represent something of the rich weekend we shared together: