Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Review: Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament series

The Zondervan Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament is an exceptional series. I picked up James a couple of years ago and was blown over by it. This series is helpful for those who, like me, have had Greek in seminary, know the importance of the original languages, but through the busyness of ministry have neglected to keep it up. The ZECNT serves as a kind of prompt to help you remember what you studied and ease back into using Greek.

But it does more than that. It offers great exegetical insights into the text. Unlike other exegetical commentaries, it does not overwhelm you with interaction from other critical sources. You don't read page after page of interaction with other commentaries and monographs. That is not to say this series ignores other material. It simply keeps the focus on the Greek text. For this reason, I can't recommend this series highly enough.

Zondervan recently sent me a copy of the newly released Ephesians commentary. I plan on preaching through Ephesians in 2011 and this will be a much used resource. Thumbing through it I can already see this will be a helpful resource to enrich my study and sermon preparation.

This may be one of the best new commentary series available. Even though it deals with the Greek text, those with little to no Greek backgrounds will benefit from it greatly.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A Month of Thanksgiving: 30 Scriptures

I intended to post a Scripture every day this month. I even have a Scripture selected for each day. But events and negligence ruined that. So instead, I'm going to post all thirty for your thoughtful reflection.

  1. Psalm 69:30 (ESV) I will praise the name of God with a song; I will magnify him with thanksgiving.

  2. 1 Chron. 16:34 (ESV) Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!

  3. Psalm 30:4 (ESV) Sing praises to the Lord, O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name.

  4. 2 Cor. 9:15 (ESV) Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!

  5. 1 Thes. 5:18 (ESV) give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

  6. Romans 6:17 (ESV) But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed,

  7. 2 Cor. 2:14 (ESV) But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere.

  8. Ephes. 5:4 (ESV) Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving.

  9. Col. 4:2 (ESV) Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.

  10. Psalm 56:12 (ESV) I must perform my vows to you, O God; I will render thank offerings to you.

  11. 1 Chron. 29:13 (ESV) And now we thank you, our God, and praise your glorious name.

  12. Psalm 92:1 (ESV) It is good to give thanks to the Lord, to sing praises to your name, O Most High;

  13. 1 Cor. 1:4 (ESV) I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that was given you in Christ Jesus,

  14. Col. 3:17 (ESV) And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

  15. Psalm 107:15 (ESV) Let them thank the Lord for his steadfast love, for his wondrous works to the children of men!

  16. Hebrews 12:28 (ESV) Therefore let us be grateful for receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken, and thus let us offer to God acceptable worship, with reverence and awe,

  17. Jonah 2:9 (ESV) But I with the voice of thanksgiving will sacrifice to you; what I have vowed I will pay. Salvation belongs to the Lord!"

  18. Philip. 4:6 (ESV) Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.

  19. Psalm 140:13 (ESV) Surely the righteous shall give thanks to your name; the upright shall dwell in your presence.

  20. Isaiah 12:1 (ESV) You will say in that day: "I will give thanks to you, O Lord, for though you were angry with me, your anger turned away, that you might comfort me.”

  21. Psalm 9:1 (ESV) I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart; I will recount all of your wonderful deeds.

  22. Psalm 35:18 (ESV) I will thank you in the great congregation; in the mighty throng I will praise you.

  23. Psalm 86:12 (ESV) I give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart, and I will glorify your name forever.

  24. Psalm 97:12 (ESV) Rejoice in the Lord, O you righteous, and give thanks to his holy name!

  25. Psalm 100:4 (ESV) Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name!

  26. Psalm 118:1 (ESV) Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!

  27. Psalm 75:1 (ESV) We give thanks to you, O God; we give thanks, for your name is near. We recount your wondrous deeds.

  28. Psalm 118:28 (ESV) You are my God, and I will give thanks to you; you are my God; I will extol you.

  29. Psalm 145:10 (ESV) All your works shall give thanks to you, O Lord, and all your saints shall bless you!

  30. 1 Cor. 15:57 (ESV) But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Think: A Review

John Piper is a personal hero. I've read many of his books, listened to dozens of his sermons, watched his videos, and attended his conferences. I always learn and am inspired when I sit under the teaching of John Piper.

Think is a good book and I found it helpful. I don't think that Think will end up on a Piper "must read" list. This book will not appeal to a wide audience. In fact, Piper states so much in the conclusion of the book. However, having said that, I do believe this book should be read by college students and other "thinkers" or people being challenged on an intellectual level. It is not so much an apologetic as it is an antidote to blindly accepting humanistic assumptions. And it is a call to Biblical thinking which is sorely lacking today.

The best chapters in the book are:
  • Chapter 3- Reading as Thinking... for help in how to read and understand the Bible.
  • Chapter 5- Rational Gospel, Spiritual Light... for understanding the relationship between human comprehension of the Gospel and the Divine unveiling of the Gospel to man.
  • Chapter 6- Love for God: Treasuring God with All Your Mind... for unpacking the Biblical command to love the Lord your God with all your mind.
  • Chapter 8- The Immorality of Relativism... for exposing the sinfulness and corruption of relativistic thinking.

Some of my favorite quotes:

"Thinking is indispensable on the path to passion for God." (p. 27)

"...at the bottom of human irrationality ("darkened in their understanding") and at the bottom of spiritual ignorance ("the ignorance that is in them") is hardness of heart. That is, our self-centered hearts distort our reason to the point where we cannot use it to draw true inferences from what is really there." (p. 63)

"What does it mean to love God "with all your mind"? I take it to mean that we direct our thinking in a certain way; namely, our thinking should be wholly engaged to do all it can to awaken and express the heartfelt fullness of treasuring God above all things." (p. 83)

"...relativism only looks humble but is inherently a cloak of pride. It works like this. Truth with a capital T- Truth rooted in God's objective reality and word- is a massive, unchanging reality that we little humans must submit to. Coming to know this truth is the humble task of putting ourselves under this reality and submitting to it. Understanding is literally taking the humble position to stand under the truth and let it be our rule." (p. 112)
Below is a video of Piper introducing Think.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

He's Alive! TBC Sermon Series

November 7
John 20:1-23
He's Alive! Rejoicing in the Resurrection

November 14, 2010
John 20:24-31
He's Alive! Believing in the Resurrection

November 21, 2010
John 21:1-25
He's Alive! Restored by the Resurrection

Come worship with us at Tremont Baptist Church every Sunday at 10:30 a.m. as we celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ together.

A Month of Thanksgiving: November 4

2 Corinthians 9:15 (ESV) Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

A Month of Thanksgiving: November 3

Psalm 30: 4 (ESV) Sing praises to the Lord, O you his saints, and give thanks to his holy name.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A Month of Thanksgiving: November 2

1 Chronicles 16:34 (ESV) Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!

Monday, November 1, 2010

A Month of Thanksgiving: November 1

I love Thanksgiving. It is one of the last (mostly) pure and (relatively) uncommercialized holidays we have left.

For the month of November, I am going to post a Scripture a day related to the theme of Thanksgiving.


"I will praise the name of God with a song; I will magnify him with thanksgiving."
Psalm 69:30 (ESV)