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Thought Crimes and the Silencing of Dissent: Part 1

abThe Justice Behind Political Correctness Human experience has always shaped human language—how can it be otherwise? We experience something for the first time and so root around for the best words to articulate it. That way we can share something of it with others. But if that experience is genuinely groundbreaking, we must invent new words. With the last century’s rate of change showing no sign of decelerating in ours, it is no surprise that neologisms must to be forged almost on a daily basis.  "Internet cafe," "biometric," and "vlogger" would have been meaningless to our grandparents and many of our parents! But the opposite is also true. Life and society get shaped by our language and stories. Or as Oscar Wilde put it, “Life imitates art.” It’s harder (though not impossible) to conceive of something if we lack the vocabulary to describe it. Our stories mold the expectations in our lives....

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Truth Matters

We live in an age when truth has become increasingly subjective and perspectival. What is truth for me may not be truth for you. As a result, the whole notion of absolute truth has died, and, in terms of the conventional definition, there is no more truth; all that is left is varying points of view. Not that this is entirely new. Over a generation ago, apologist Francis Schaeffer lamented the very same phenomenon he perceived already in his day and felt compelled to coin the term “true truth” (as if there were false truth!) to affirm emphatically that truth still existed. That truth, Schaeffer maintained, is grounded in the one God who “is there and is not silent,” having revealed himself in the Lord Jesus Christ who died on the cross for our sins and came back to life again. The Christian gospel thus gives meaning to our lives...

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Divine Sovereignty and Human Responsibility

What does the Bible say about divine sovereignty and human responsibility? Much high end research has been done on this challenging topic. This paper is a mere summary of the work done by many scholars, but it may be helpful for some because a) it is brief, b) it uses simple straightforward language, and c) it addresses a matter of theological importance. D.A. Carson, How Long, O Lord? (IVP, 1990) J.I. Packer, Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God (IVP, 1986) Summary: People sometimes feel that a belief in the all-powerful God of the Bible necessitates a kind of philosophical fatalism. For instance, people ask, “If God is all powerful and all loving, why do people suffer?” Or, again, people ask, “If God is all powerful, why pray?” These questions are at root confusions about the relationship between the sovereignty of God and human responsibility. According to the Bible, the sovereignty of God and human responsibility are both...

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Sermon Video: How Faith in Jesus Can Give You New Life

Below, on March 27, 2016, Josh Moody preached an Easter message on “How Faith in Jesus Can Give You New Life” in the sermon series “Four Steps to New Life.” Taken from John 20:24-31, this message’s aim is to get you to doubt your doubts and only put faith in what is really true and can give you life to the full—the Risen Christ. The sermon looks first at Thomas and then at us. Discussion questions about this sermon can be found here. ...

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Top 10 Books of 2015

Alec Hill, President Emeritus of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship/USA, joins God Centered Life Ministries today to share his Top 10 Books of 2015.  1.  Deep Down Dark: The Untold Stories of 33 Men Buried in a Chilean Mine, and the Miracle That Set Them Free by Hector Tobar (Picador, 2015) In 2010, a Chilean mine collapse trapped 33 men for more than two months. Though the rescue story is exciting, the essence of the book is how the men bond together when all seems hopeless. My favorite character is Jose Henriquez, an introverted 54 year old laborer, who becomes known as “el pastor.” Gathering the men for daily confession, prayer and Scripture teaching (from memory – he had no Bible), Jose becomes the quiet glue that holds the community together.   2.  A Fragile Stone: The Emotional Life of Simon Peter by Michael Card (InterVarsity Press, 2007) Full disclosure: I love everything that Michael Card writes. In this simple –...

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Reading the Bible

by Josh Moody In my prized possession is a letter from John Stott. He was replying to say that he supported me, as the new President of the Cambridge Inter-Collegiate Christian Union, in my desire to revitalize the daily Bible reading and prayer life of the Union. Hardly radical stuff. Or is it? Then, and again now, I sense that there is a renewed need for us to emphasize the basic daily habit of “Reading the Bible.” My observation is that it is becoming more common for us to be so distracted by other “spiritual content” that we focus less on the actual Bible and more on “devotionals.” The reason for this is not just because we are living a more fast-paced lifestyle than in yesteryear (a complaint that you can read about each year, going back hundreds of years), but more because we are experiencing a reality predicted by the late great...

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How Much Has Changed?

The following article was written for Evangelicals Now and published in their news publication for November 2015. Yet another survey of American religious beliefs has come out recently. This was a telephone survey of 1,000 adults that purports to show that most Americans (no surprise here), including those who do not affiliate with a denomination of one kind or another, believe in a “Creator” (Christianheadlines.com October 8, 2015). This brings up a host of questions, as well as possible encouragements or otherwise. For instance, how much should we take as ‘gospel truth’ a survey of 1,000 people over the phone? If we want to get serious about what is going on in terms of trends we would do well to read the very brief but authoritative book by Mark Chaves entitled American Religion: Contemporary Trends (Princeton 2011). The trouble with books about trends is that they are quite rapidly out of date, but the advantage...

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