“Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them.”

“Unless the Gospel is Preached” — Alistair Begg Click Below to Download your Image: Apple Devices:iPadsiPhones Other Devices:Android PhonesAmazon FireMicrosoft Surface Social MediaFacebook BannerFacebook PostTwitter PostInstagram Post Desktop ComputerLargeSmall

In a performative age, brazenness gives an illusion of strength. For most of the year, a friend in England and I have debated whether his country’s politics are becoming more American. Much of it had to do with the roiling scandals around Prime Minister Boris Johnson. My friend was constantly telling me, “This time, Boris is done for,” but I was never quite sure. Ultimately my friend was right, and Johnson’s Conservative Party forced his resignation. But critics agreed that he stuck it out as long as he did because, as many put it, “Shamelessness is a superpower.” A sense…

“This is what the LORD says— your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel: “I am the LORD your God, who teaches you what is best for you, who directs you in the way you should go.”

While praying and turning wrenches, I discovered a rich Christian life. Ten years ago, I found myself at a vocational fork in the road. I had spent years praying and dreaming about pastoring a church—studying theology, writing sermons, visiting hospitals, and interceding with folks toward this goal. But like many millennials, I was tight on cash. With a growing family, I had to think frankly about the feasibility of seminary, how little money I’d make as a pastor, and how very little progress I felt I’d made in the Christian life. How was I to lead others down a path…

The Dutch illustrator’s bold and simple work shaped “the biblical cosmos of images” for millions. Kees de Kort, an artist who gave generations of Dutch and German children their first indelible impressions of Bible stories, has died at home in the Netherlands. He was 87. De Kort sold more than 33 million children’s Bibles worldwide and became so popular in the Netherlands and Germany that “De Kort” is sometimes understood as a synonym for “children’s Bible.” For many modern Europeans, “the biblical cosmos of images is unthinkable” without his work, according to the German national newspaper Die Zeit. De Kort’s…

T. B. Maston’s views on integration were controversial at his seminary. Today, they deserve a fresh hearing. In the years before the Civil War, the major evangelical denominations divided into regional factions based in part upon their views of human enslavement. The DNA of each new Southern denominational tradition was imprinted with racism, casting a long shadow over their subsequent development. The Southern Baptist Convention (SBC) was formed under these circumstances in 1845, and for most of its history, the Southern part was at least as important to the Convention’s identity as the Baptist part. Southern Baptists were a thoroughly…

Tolkien’s kingdom of Númenor is a cautionary tale for us today. A charismatic demagogue seduces a mighty empire, winning power with promises to restore past glory. A people betray their founding principles, apostatizing from the faith of their fathers to pursue dreams of immortality. Their great city teeters on the brink of civil war. A faithful remnant is hounded as traitors by a mob hellbent on ruin. Neither a summary of Old Testament prophets nor of yesterday’s New York Times, these are some of the stories in J. R. R. Tolkien’s The Silmarillion—the lore bible of Middle-earth. Long overlooked, the…

In today’s hybrid work culture, Christians should recommit to the biblical rhythms of work and rest. Over the past few years, many of us have unfortunately become familiar with descriptors like the Great Resignation and the Great Disengagement. Even if you have not heard these terms, you are likely familiar with their meaning. The former describes the onslaught of people quitting their jobs due to all sorts of current socioeconomic and mental health reasons, while the latter points to people keeping their jobs but having a profound sense of emotional disengagement with their work. Sometimes referred to as “quiet quitting,”…

Only walking in the Spirit can renew our fleshly thinking into a kingdom mindset. This piece was adapted from Russell Moore’s newsletter. Subscribe here. Have you ever said something and then, moments later, cringed with shame as you replayed it in your mind? If so, you’ll know the sort of feeling I had a couple weeks ago. I was talking with an expert on social media polarization who was not a Christian. She made an insightful and compelling case about why so much radical, crazy content gets traction, including within the church. The algorithms recognize, she said, how emotions work….

Dear Friend, I recently noticed in a Scottish newspaper a letter from a Free Church minister in which he maintained that an increase in ferry breakdowns is a sign of “God’s displeasure” for sailing between the mainland and the islands on Sundays. The Free Church is calling on the ferry operators to “cease their breaking of the Lord’s Day for the sake of their business and the community as a whole” because it is the desecration of the Sabbath! It got me thinking about the fourth commandment. You may be interested to learn that I regularly hear from Seventh-day Adventists…

“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor … to grant to those who mourn in Zion—to give them a beautiful headdress instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the garment of praise instead of a faint spirit; that they may be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he may be glorified.” (Isaiah 61:1, 3) What can transform despair, mourning, sackcloth, and weeping into light, gladness, honor, and joy? Who brings about changes like this—in a city, in a life,…

You might be familiar with the classic story The Pilgrim’s Progress, a Christian allegory written by John Bunyan. It tells the fictional tale of Christian, who navigates many challenges on his way to Celestial City. But did you know that Bunyan wrote a sequel to his story, The Pilgrim’s Progress, Part II? In it, the main character, Christiana, embarks on her own journey and learns, as Christian did, about the perseverance that the Christian life requires. In a recent adaptation for children, Little Pilgrim’s Big Journey Part II follows the same storyline as Bunyan’s sequel but uses simplified language that’s…

The appellate ruling sides with the Christian Medical and Dental Society and a Catholic hospital system that opposed the federal rule. The Biden administration has received another setback from a federal court—this time at the appellate level—in its effort to institute transgender rights even at the expense of freedom of conscience. The US Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans blocked last Friday a Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) rule that required doctors and hospitals to perform gender-transition procedures, as well as abortions. The unanimous opinion by a three-judge panel upheld a 2021 permanent injunction by a…

The National Association of Evangelicals focuses on the impact of the changing environment. The National Association of Evangelicals unveiled a sweeping report on global climate change, laying out what its authors call the “biblical basis” for environmental activism to help spur fellow evangelicals to address the planetary environmental crisis. “Creation, although groaning under the fall, is still intended to bless us. However, for too many in this world, the beach isn’t about sunscreen and bodysurfing but is a daily reminder of rising tides and failed fishing,” reads the introduction of the report, penned by NAE President Walter Kim and released…

A selection of articles on the late leader’s global legacy. When Mikhail Gorbachev first took his place as the leader of the Soviet Union in 1985, many people, including CT writers, assumed he would “continue [the Soviet government’s] campaign against religious believers regardless of who leads the country.” But perceptions about his faith changed as the fall of the Soviet Union transpired and visits to the Crystal Cathedral and the tomb of St. Francis of Assisi sparked debates about his thoughts on religion. While some Chistians speculated about Gorbachev’s relationship to end times prophecy, CT writers looked for new signs…

Amazon’s “Rings of Power” series adds to what Tolkien termed the “Cauldron of Story,” where sub-creators mix up the stew of God’s creation. I’ve read the Lord of the Rings so many times I have sizable swaths of it memorized. It doesn’t require much to get me reciting lines about the sound of horns echoing dimly in dark Mindolluin’s sides, or to call out a foul dwimmerlaik for his deeds and trespasses. I’ve loved Tolkien since I first read him. I always will. And I know I’m not alone. That kind of love for Tolkien is behind a lot of…

Slavic broadcasters take different approaches as legal and societal efforts to combat propaganda impact worship and evangelism. A new language law in Ukraine has complicated ministry to Russian-speaking citizens. Comparing restrictions to the Soviet era, one Christian broadcaster is relocating to Budapest, Hungary. “I don’t want our staff busted on the air for reading the Bible in Russian,” said Dan Johnson, president of Christian Radio for Russia, which operates New Life Radio (NLR) from Odessa on Ukraine’s Black Sea coast. “We were expecting bombs to wreck our radio operations, but it turned out to be this law.” Last month, Russian…

But it doesn’t mean what you think it means. A recent LifeWay Research study asked American Protestant pastors if women in their congregations were allowed to take on six specific leadership roles. Views on preaching were predictably split, but roughly “9 in 10 pastors say women could be ministers to children (94%), committee leaders (92%), ministers to teenagers (89%), or coed adult Bible study teachers (85%) in their churches,” according to Aaron Earls. Fewer (64%) said women could be deacons. The question of where a woman can serve in church “has been debated for centuries with biblical scholars in different…

His theories of conversion and competition shaped widely held views of church growth and decline. Rodney Stark, the influential and controversial sociologist who argued for rational choice in religion, died last month at age 88. Stark made the case that religious conversion, commitment, and cultural vitality should be understood in terms of costs and benefits. He rejected the common assumption that people practice a religion because they agree with the theology, arguing creedal affirmations are secondary to social connections. And he rejected academic accounts of belief as “false consciousness” or fundamentally irrational. In more than 30 books published across seven…

When leaders admit wrongdoing, we should respond with quiet sobriety, not clapping. Yesterday, I finished a 17-year ministry at Southern Hills Baptist Church in Sioux City, Iowa. Our attendance was the highest it’s been in a long time. I did what I’ve done week after week, Sunday after Sunday, since August 28, 2005: preach a text of Scripture. After church, we had a potluck dinner and enjoyed warm fellowship. Members expressed love for my wife and me, sorrow that we were leaving, and prayers for our future. We received a basket of cards with some generous gifts and messages that…