“When the bottom falls out and disappointments come, you will learn what you believe, what you love, and what you treasure.”
– Ligon Duncan III
“People do not drift toward Holiness. Apart from grace-driven effort, people do not gravitate toward godliness, prayer, obedience to Scripture, faith, and delight in the Lord. We drift toward compromise and call it tolerance; we drift toward disobedience and call it freedom; we drift toward superstition and call it faith. We cherish the indiscipline of lost self-control and call it relaxation; we slouch toward prayerlessness and delude ourselves into thinking we have escaped legalism; we slide toward godlessness and convince ourselves we have been liberated.” – D.A Carson
“The unsaved sinner loves a salvation from hell. The true Christian loves a salvation from sin. Everyone desires to be saved from the pit, but it is only a child of God who wants to be saved from every false way.” – Charles Spurgeon
“The church is looking for better methods. God is looking for better men, for people are God’s methods.” – E.M. Bounds
“We can stop pleading with God to show us the future, and start living and obeying like we are confident that He holds the future.” – Kevin DeYoung
“Ultimately, preaching accomplishes its spiritual purposes not because of the skills or the wisdom of a preacher but because of the power of the Scripture proclaimed (1 Cor. 2:4–5).” – Bryan Chappell
There are two ways to get enough: one is to continue to accumulate more and more. The other is to desire less. — G.K. Chesterton
If we are united to Christ, then we are united to him at all points of his activity on our behalf.
- in his death (we were baptized into his death),
- in his resurrection (we are resurrected with Christ),
- in his ascension (we have been raised with him),
- in his heavenly session (we sit with him in heavenly places, so that our life is hidden with Christ in God), and we will share
- in his promised return (when Christ, who is our life, appears, we also will appear with him in glory)(Rom. 6:14; Col. 2:11-12; 3:1-3)
This, then, is the foundation of sanctification in Reformed theology.
It is rooted, not in humanity and their achievement of holiness or sanctification, but in what God has done in Christ, and for us in union with him. Rather than view Christians first and foremost in the microcosmic context of their own progress, the Reformed doctrine first of all sets them in the macrocosm of God’s activity in redemptive history. It is seeing oneself in this context that enables the individual Christian to grow in true holiness. – Sinclair A Ferguson
“A man is what he is on his knees before God, and nothing more.” – Robert Murray M’Cheyne
“The problem is that contemporary people think life is all about finding happiness. We decide what conditions will make us happy and then we work to bring those conditions about. To live for happiness means that you are trying to get something out of life. But when suffering comes along, it takes the conditions for happiness away, and so suffering destroys all your reason to keep living. But to “live for meaning” means not that you try to get something out of life but rather that life expects something from us. In other words, you have meaning only when there is something in life more important than your own personal freedom and happiness, something for which you are glad to sacrifice your happiness.” ― Timothy Keller – Walking with God Through Pain and Suffering
“If God had perceived that our greatest need was economic, he would have sent an economist. If he had perceived that our greatest need was entertainment, he would have sent us a comedian or an artist. If God had perceived that our greatest need was political stability, he would have sent us a politician. If he had perceived that our greatest need was health, he would have sent us a doctor. But he perceived that our greatest need involved our sin, our alienation from him, our profound rebellion, our death; and he sent us a Savior.” – D.A. Carson
“The fatal flaw of human wisdom is that it promises that you can change your relationships without needing to change yourself.” – Paul David Tripp
The ultimate test of our spirituality is the measure of our amazement at the grace of God. –D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones, (1899-1981)
It is difficult to see how Christianity can have a positive effect on society if it cannot transform its own homes. – John MacArthur Jr.
“I asked God for strength, that I might achieve.
I was made weak, that I might humbly learn to obey.
I asked for health, that I might do greater things.
I was given infirmity, that I might do better things.
I asked for riches, that I might be happy.
I was given poverty, that I might be wise.
I asked for power, that I might have the praise of men.
I was given weakness, that I might feel the need of God.
I asked for all things, that I might enjoy life.
I was given life, that I might enjoy all things.
I got nothing that I asked for, but everything that I hoped for. Almost despite myself, my unspoken prayers were answered.”
― Bryan Chapell, Praying Backwards: Transform Your Prayer Life by Beginning in Jesus’ Name
“If you don’t feel strong desires for the manifestation of the glory of God, it is not because you have drunk deeply and are satisfied. It is because you have nibbled so long at the table of the world. Your soul is stuffed with small things, and there is no room for the great.” ― John Piper, A Hunger For God
“Jesus calls all sinners to repent. True repentance is not a nebulous response of sorrow; it requires definite actions. Repentance so transforms the mind that it results in a changed life. Repentance does not merely say “I’m sorry” (similar to what we say when we accidentally step on someone’s foot). Rather, true repentance says from the heart, “I’ve been wrong and grieve over my sin, but now I see the truth, and I will change my ways accordingly.”
― Joel R. Beeke,
“Love without truth is sentimentality; it supports and affirms us but keeps us in denial about our flaws. Truth without love is harshness; it gives us information but in such a way that we cannot really hear it. God’s saving love in Christ, however, is marked by both radical truthfulness about who we are and yet also radical, unconditional commitment to us. The merciful commitment strengthens us to see the truth about ourselves and repent. The conviction and repentance moves us to cling to and rest in God’s mercy and grace…. ” Tim Keller
“Human beings by their very nature are worshipers. Worship is not something we do; it defines who we are. You cannot divide human beings into those who worship and those who don’t. Everybody worships; it’s just a matter of what, or whom, we serve.” – Paul David Tripp, Instruments in the Redeemer’s Hands
What I have come to understand is that the process of maturation not only has no switch, but it runs both ways. I need not only to grow older in the faith, but to grow younger as well. Jesus said that unless I become like a child, I will not enter the kingdom of God (Matt. 18:3). This means we find our way to the kingdom less by the adult work of mapping and climbing and carrying and struggling and more by resting. The kingdom is found, maturity is reached, when we realize our utter dependence on His grace. He carries us, He washes us. He scrapes away the barnacles of our cynicism, scrubs away the stains of our self-sufficiency. And like the strange case of Benjamin Button, with each day we grow older we grow younger, cleaner, purer. This is the path He has laid before us. We should traverse it less like heroic explorers and more like a child frolicking in the Hundred Acre Wood.” – R.C. Sproul Jr.
“If Christmas didn’t happen, if God really didn’t become human, then the joy of Christmas, the partying and all that, is only temporary and the suffering of this world is permanent. But if Christmas really happened, and God really became a human being at Christmas, and he really broke into this world to redeem us, then the suffering of this world is temporary and the joy of the new heavens and new earth is permanent.” – Tim Keller
“Christian humility is not thinking less of yourself, it is thinking of yourself less.” –Tim Keller
“The final perseverance of the saints is one of the grand and distinctive blessings proclaimed by the Gospel, being an integral part of salvation itself, and therefore any outcry against this doctrine is an attack upon the very foundations of the believer’s comfort and assurance. How can I go on my way rejoicing if there be doubts in my mind whether God will continue to deal graciously with me and complete that work which He has begun in my soul? How can I sincerely thank God for having delivered me from the wrath to come if it is quite possible I may yet be cast into Hell?”~ Arthur Pink, “Eternal Security”
“Just about everybody in America likes Jesus, but few like him for who he truly is.” – Kevin DeYoung
“Jonathan Edwards once said: ‘God is glorified not only by His glory’s being seen, but by its being rejoiced in.’ It is not enough to say, ‘I guess he is God, so I have got to knuckle under.’ You have to see his beauty. Glorifying God does not mean obeying him only because you have to. It means to obey him because you want to — because you are attracted to him, because you delight in him….Look at Jesus. He was perfect, right? And yet he goes around crying all the time. He is always weeping, a man of sorrows. Do you know why? Because he is perfect. Because when you are not all absorbed in yourself, you can feel the sadness of the world. And therefore, what you actually have is that the joy of the Lord happens inside the sorrow. It doesn’t come after the sorrow. It doesn’t come after the uncontrollable weeping. The weeping drives you into the joy, it enhances the joy, and then the joy enables you to actually feel your grief without its sinking you. In other words, you are finally emotionally healthy.” – Timothy Keller
“Till sin be bitter, Christ will not be sweet.” – Thomas Watson
“Peace is the opposite of security….Peace means giving oneself completely to God’s commandment, wanting no security, but in faith and obedience laying the destiny of the nations in the hand of Almighty God, not trying to direct if for selfish purposes. Battles are won, not with weapons, but with God. They are won where the way leads to the cross.” – Dietrich Bonhoeffer
“[A] common reason why many do not hold perseverance is an incorrect view of the nature of SAVING FAITH. They regard faith as nothing better than a feeling or impression. As soon as they see a man somewhat impressed with the preaching of the Gospel and manifesting some pleasure in hearing about Christ—they set him down at once as a believer! Now this is a mischievous error, and I am afraid sadly common in many quarters. The history of all revivals proves that there may often be a great quantity of seemingly religious impression, without any true work of the Spirit. Saving faith is something far deeper and mightier than a little sudden feeling. It is an act not of the feelings only—but of the whole conscience, will, understanding, and inward man. It is a mighty work on the heart, which none but He who made the world can effect, and a work which will abide and stand the fire.” – J.C. Ryle
“The idea that God is above law can be explained in another particular. The laws that God imposes on men do not apply to the divine nature. They are applicable only to human conditions. For example, God cannot steal, not only because whatever he does is right, but also because he owns everything: There is no one to steal from. Thus the law that defines sin envisages human conditions and has no relevance to a sovereign creator. Another aspect of the human conditions presupposed by the laws God imposes on man is that they carry with them a penalty that cannot be inflicted on God. Man is responsible because God calls him to account; man is responsible because the supreme power can punish him for disobedience. God, on the contrary, cannot be responsible for the plain reason that there is no power superior to him; no greater being can hold him accountable; no one can punish him; there is no one to whom God is responsible; there are no laws which he could disobey. The sinner, therefore, and not God, is responsible; the sinner alone is the author of sin.” – Gordon Clark