Archive - 2011

Steve Jobs (1955-2011)

Many of us have good reason to appreciate the creative genius and entrepreneurial spirit of Steve Jobs, who just passed into eternity. God highly endowed this man with common grace and we can only hope that in his final chapter he found true rest in God’s saving grace.   Jobs was very much aware of his mortality, having overcome pancreatic cancer in 2003.  He spoke movingly about it in the second half of this 2005 commencement address he gave at Stanford University (my wife’s Alma mater).

Here are a few choice quotes from his speech (transcript here):

“No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it.”

“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure – these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. ”

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life.”

ReformedCast Interview on Thriving at College

Yesterday it was a pleasure to be interviewed by Scott Oakland, the Host of ReformedCast. The approximately 45-minute interview discussed a variety of themes in Thriving at College.

Next week Scott will be interviewing Joe Thorn about his book Note to Self.

Glorifying God at Work

Great thoughts by John Piper, divided into nine headings:

  1. Dependence
  2. Integrity
  3. Skill
  4. Corporate shaping
  5. Impact
  6. Communication
  7. Love
  8. Money
  9. Thanks

HT: Matt Perman

Interview with David Sitton

David Sitton is a guest right now at the Desiring God Conference. Here’s a lengthy interview I did with him a few years ago:

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Check it out.

Ecclesiastes: Life in a Fallen World

The book of Ecclesiastes presents a realistic, nuanced view of life in a fallen world — a life full of many wonderful pleasures, but one that is often marred with deep frustration. In it we find instruction on how we, as believers, ought to exercise godly enjoyment in our work, family, and the rest of creation–while finding ultimate meaning only in God (not his gifts). We learn that God is sovereign over this messy world, and that the guilty will not always go unpunished.

My latest Boundless article has been titled When Life’s Unfair. It seeks to unpack four aspects of life in a fallen world:

1. Bad stuff happens, and it’s not always caused (directly) by sin.

2. Don’t bother trying to figure it all out, because you can’t.

3. Instead, enjoy what God gives you, because you’ll soon be dead.

4. So fear God, and keep His commands, because a real judgment is really coming.

Here’s the opening:

Mike did everything right at his company, but lost his job and hasn’t been able to find a new one in nine months. His co-worker Tom is deceptive and manipulative, regularly taking credit for the work of others and angling for praise. A good schmoozer, he’s since been promoted. It sure seems that bad things happen to good people. Why do some of the godliest Christians experience the worst hardships imaginable — a surprise lay-off, years of joblessness, a mysterious illness, infertility, financial loss, the death of an infant — while some of the most corrupt people seem to have everything going for them?

Read the rest.

Steyn and Mohler on Canadian Infanticide Case

Albert Mohler and Mark Steyn offer their reflections on Katrina Efferts killing her newborn baby and avoiding jail time.

Katrina Effert Infanticide Case in Canada

Katrina Effert will not even face jail time for killing her newborn infant.

Jonathon Van Maren, communications director for Canadian Center for Bioethical Reform, writes on the outrageously horrific case of Katrina Effert, a 19 year old woman who secretly gave birth to a baby boy in her parents’ home,  and then strangled the baby, discarding his body over the fence into the neighbor’s yard.  Ms. Effert was originally charged in 2005 with second-degree murder, and a jury in Wetaskiwin found her guilty in the fall of 2006. That verdict was overturned by Alberta’s Court of Appeal in 2007.

Eventually, the conviction for  murder was ‘downgraded’ by an Edmonton Court of Queen’s Bench judge to infanticide, and in lieu of jail time she will now merely serve a suspended 3-year sentence.

Writes VanMaren:

In her argument, the judge stated that “while many Canadians undoubtedly view abortion as a less than ideal solution to unprotected sex and unwanted pregnancy, they generally understand, accept, and sympathize with the onerous demands pregnancy and childbirth exact from mothers, especially mothers without support.”

Read the whole thing.

What Is the Mission of the Church?

Kevin DeYoung and Greg Gilbert have just published what looks like an absolutely outstanding book on an increasingly controversial subject in our day. What Is the Mission of the Church?: Making Sense of Social Justice, Shalom, and the Great Commission is on a 66-69% discount from WTS books until Saturday, September 10, 4 PM, EDT. A single copy of this 288 page paperback book is going for $5.99 and a case of five is selling for $4.99/each.

The publisher’s description reads:

Social justice and mission are hot topics today: there’s a wonderful resurgence of motivated Christians passionate about spreading the gospel and caring for the needs of others. But in our zeal to get sharing and serving, many are unclear on gospel and mission. Yes, we are called to spend ourselves for the sake of others, but what is the church’s unique priority as it engages the world?

DeYoung and Gilbert write to help Christians “articulate and live out their views on the mission of the church in ways that are theologically faithful, exegetically careful, and personally sustainable.” Looking at the Bible’s teaching on evangelism, social justice, and shalom, they explore the what, why, and how of the church’s mission. From defining “mission”, to examining key passages on social justice and their application, to setting our efforts in the context of God’s rule, DeYoung and Gilbert bring a wise, studied perspective to the missional conversation.

Continue Reading…


This looks like a great movie, and it opens at 900 theaters nationwide on September 30.

See Andy Naselli’s post for more information.

Thinking About Grad School? Part 2

Boundless has posted part 2 of the two-part series I wrote on grad school deliberation.  Here’s how part 2 opens:

Marriage is a live issue for men and women everywhere who consider grad school. If you’re in a relationship, should you delay marriage until you’ve completed an advanced degree (as Chris assumes in Part 1)? If you are married, should you not go to grad school? If you hope to meet someone and get married, will grad school serve as a roadblock?

Read the rest.

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