On Christian Books & Marriage (and a great 48-hour book sale)

trippI’m not married.  I don’t even see it on the imminent horizon for myself. But it’s something I’ve waited for, have tried to prepare myself for, and have written my fair share of poetry about throughout the years (here’s a sampling of my passion for it, my confusion about it, my fears about it, and my desire for it).  The Westminster Bookstore is having a 48 hour sale ending at 3pm on Friday, April 16th.

There are two books that this sale affects, but there are three books I’m mainly talking about in this post, so don’t stop reading until I get to the third.  The main book being promoted in this sale here is Paul Tripp‘s new book, What Did You Expect?: Redeeming the Realities of Marriage.  The second book is not a new one, but it is one of WTSbooks’ “favorite books on marriage”, and that is John Piper‘s This Momentary Marriage: A Parable of Permanence.

Continue reading

A Great Deal from the Westminster Bookstore

Just wanted to drop a quick note to let everyone about a great deal I saw at WTSBooks.com. I’ve long said that Westminster Theological Seminary’s Bookstore is the best bookstore I know of.  Between classes, it where we’d go to have fun.  It was like a candy store for all those theologically-inclined individuals.  They’re dirt-cheap (more often than not cheaper than Amazon) and usually have some good deal going on.  And this one is no exception.  Two brand new books.  $14.49.  Here’s the link:

You Can Change/ What Is The Gospel (Two Pack)- WTSBooks.com

I’m most excited about this first book, You Can Change: God’s Transforming Power for Our Sinful Behavior and Negative Emotions by Tim Chester.  A little while back I read a book he wrote with Steve Timmis, Total Church: A Radical Reshaping Around Gospel and Community.  That book changed my entire perspective on the Church, the Gospel, preaching, and simply living life as a Christian.  It put many of the pieces together in my mind concerning the Church and spirituality and their place in society.  I became convinced that these guys “get it”.  They have such a full understanding of the Gospel in a corporate context, so I’m so pumped to see Chester’s thoughts on the Gospel on an individual level.  Here’s the trailer for the book:

Continue reading

“Letting Seminary Doctrinally Change You” & Controversy – GoingToSeminary.com

Remember “that” article I was talking about last week?  The one that may begin some “controversy” at GoingToSeminary.com?

Well, it’s up now.

It’s part one of two on a little series I’m writing on doctrinal changes while in seminary.  As I said then, I’m more concerned about this next article than this one.  If it even comes out.  In an hour and a half I have been called upon by the “Vice President of Advancement” and “Associate Professor of Systematic Theology” of Westminster Theological Seminary, David Garner to grab some lunch.  I have no idea what the topic of conversation is (and the one time I’ve asked, he never answered), but I’m optimistic.  He has always been one of my favorite professors I ever had and has one of the most pastoral, worshipful, Christ-centered hearts I’ve ever seen in a man.  I look up to him greatly as a pastor, preacher, teacher, husband, and father.

But, he is very much on the side of the issues at Westminster that I am not.  So I’m wondering what this is about.  I haven’t been that vocal against WTS have I?  I feel like whenever I have I’ve always made it clear that this is my opinion and I that I know I’m still young, arrogant, and don’t know anything.  I don’t know.  We’ll see.  I may let you all know.  But, in the meantime, read and enjoy the article “Letting Seminary Doctrinally Change You” at GoingToSeminary.com.  Here it is:

Letting Seminary Doctrinally Change You

Check out the rest of my Going To Seminary posts.

Controversy, Controversy, Controversy at GoingToSeminary.com

old lady

Update: The two posts mentioned in this article are now up. “Letting Seminary Doctrinally Change You” and “Seminaries & the Nature of Truth“.

Yep, it’s a double-post sort of day.  (let’s just say I’m making up for Labor Day.)  But this is a personal one.  I’m asking for some prayer.

At publication time for this post, the site GoingToSeminary.com is currently changing servers, so it’s down.  It was just bought by the somewhat Lutheran and fully online Rockbridge Seminary, sold by my good friend (and former campus minister) Ryan Burns of Design Simple.

As some of you know, I am a Contributor for the site, and my articles have tended to be pretty weighty.  I don’t know why.  It hasn’t been purposeful.  I suppose when I think of seminary it tugs at my urgent pastoral heart more than the light, fun, twentysomething heart; and this has been evident in the posts.  From what I can tell, my last article “Realizing Seminary’s Not For You” has received more comments than any other single article that I can find on the site, and those comments were fiery.  I got blasted from every side (and defended by many – thank you all, by the way).  A couple of people even compared me to an unfaithful Israelite who saw the giants in the Promised Land and got scared.  Another, in light of my severe disappointment in Westminster Theological Seminary as an institution, said that apparently I don’t know good doctrine when I see it.  In short, it caused some controversy.  I really try not to seek such controversy, and I never thought that post would spurn such heated discussion.

But –

Tomorrow’s another story.  Tomorrow my new article is going live on the site and I’m fairly sure this one will ruffle some feathers.  In fact, I’m shocked Rockbridge went ahead and decided to post it.  Kudos to them.  It will be very easy for this article to be misunderstood on both sides: those that think I go too far, and those that think I don’t go as far as I am in fact trying to go.

The article is a discussion of how to let seminary doctrinally change you.  To do this, I very consciously employ postmodern thought into my own thinking and advocate others do so as well.  It’s very touchy and I am not wholly confident that I phrased myself as articulately as a more experienced writer may have been able to.  I guess we’ll see over the next couple of days.

But, I’m actually not as concerned with this article as I am with the follow-up article I am about half-way through writing.  In the first article I lay out the responsibilities for the seminarian in this respect; in this second one, I talk about the responsibilities of the healthy seminary institution.  And in doing so I am directly taking Westminster to task for how they have abandoned the principles I lay out in this first article.  I’m sort of doubting Rockbridge would run it on the site, but who knows?  Westminster’s a competing institution and Rockbridge is marketing themselves as a seminary for the 21st century, so we’ll see.

All that to say, look for my article tomorrow at GoingToSeminary.com, and please pray for me if you could.  I’m still young and arrogant, and I need the spiritual support.  I’ll also link to the article tomorrow.  Until then . . .