Here’s this week’s list of good reads, gathered from around the web. Check out the list, there’s bound to be something there that interests you.
1. “Statement Regarding Mental Disorders, Medicine, and Counseling from ACBC” by ACBC
In light of the many criticisms that Biblical counseling receives this is a beautiful statement on the balance, care, compassion, and humility that the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors is aiming for. I am thankful for this statement as it is yet another indicator of the growth and development of the Biblical Counseling movement.
2. “Will Christians Be Secretly Raptured?” by Jeramie Rinne
The Gospel Coalition ran this piece in light of the hype around the new Left Behind movie. Rinne challenges the premise of the film saying, “It may come as a shock to learn that many Bible-believing Christians today doubt the rapture, and that most Christians throughout history had never even heard of it.” I recognize that belief in the rapture is a dominant eschatological view in American Christianity, and yet I find nothing in Scripture to support it. So I commend this article to you as at least thought-provoking. Read and consider, friends.
3. “Joan or John?” by Russell D. Moore
Moore does an excellent job of navigating this difficult and sensitive subject. How would you respond, how would your church respond, to someone who became a follower of Christ after gender-reassignment? Moore’s answer may not be perfect (though I am not sure what a perfect response looks like in this case), but it is a helpful way to navigate the question at hand.
4. “75 Signs You’re Growing in Grace (Tweets from Scotty Smith)” by Kevin Halloran
A great list highlighting examples of how you can identify you’re growing in grace. This is a great list and a helpful way to think about your growth as a follower of Jesus Christ.
5. “Dr. Anthony Bradley on Policy and Personhood” by The Henry Center
The Henry Center gives a recap on what sounds like a brilliant lecture from Dr. Bradley. Bradley urges us to recapture the idea of personalism, which calls us to love people simply because they are people. He rebukes the trend of Evangelical tribalism which views people as the collection of their ideas and beliefs, and responds to them based on who closely their beliefs align with my own. This is such an important issue that I would encourage folks not simply to read this article but to listen to Dr. Bradley’s lecture when it is posted.
6. “The Walking Dead: Brokenness Will Find You” by Dave Dunham
With the return of the new season of The Walking Dead this Sunday, my column at CAPC has also returned. Here is the first piece, a recap of last season exploring in particular how we, like the characters in the show, cannot escape the brokenness of the world, and how that is not an all together depressing reality.
7. “Ask a (Celibate) Gay Christian” by Julie Rogers
Rachel Held Evans, whom I do not agree with on many things, has done a tremendous job in inviting Julie to answer these questions on her blog. Julie is a faithful follower of Jesus, writer for the Spiritual Friendship blog, and who also happens to be self-identified as gay. She remains celibate because she wants to be faithful to Jesus. Read her questions here and be informed, encouraged, and humbled. Pray for Julie and the many like her who continue to struggle with same-sex attraction while also desiring to follow Jesus and be part of His church.
8. “Love Is all You Need” by Brett & Kate McKay
Insights from the longest longitudinal study of men ever reveals that significant role of relationships in cultivating a meaningful, successful, and happy life. “It was the capacity for intimate relationships that predicted flourishing in all aspects of these men’s lives.” Check it out.
9. “The Church of Saint John Coltrane” by Gayle Gilman and Jeff Swimmer
I have yet to watch this 28 minute documentary on “The ecstasy of jazz, raising consciousness towards a love supreme,” but I am very anxious to check it out. I LOVE jazz (thanks dad), and I love Jesus. Theologian Bill Edgar, a jazz pianist, has written elsewhere about the theology of jazz as a way to embrace the divine – this documentary looks to say similar things with the particular music of John Coltrane. Check it out.