Regeneration

Ephesians 2:1 NASB And you were dead in your trespasses and sins,

Ephesians 2:4-5 NASB But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, [5] even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),

2 Corinthians 5:17-19 NASB [17] Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. [18] Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, [19] namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.

Ephesians 2:8-9 NASB For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; [9] not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

Ephesians 1:19-20 NASB and what is the surpassing greatness of His power toward us who believe. These are in accordance with the working of the strength of His might [20] which He brought about in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead and seated Him at His right hand in the heavenly places,

John 3:3-6 NASB Jesus answered and said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” [4] Nicodemus *said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born, can he?” [5] Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. [6] “That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

1 Peter 1:23 NASB for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God.

John 1:12-13 NASB But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, [13] who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

1 John 3:9 NASB No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God.

1 John 4:7 NASB Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.

1 John 5:1 NASB Whoever believes that Jesus is the Christ is born of God, and whoever loves the Father loves the child born of Him.

1 John 5:4 NASB For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world–our faith.

1 John 5:18 NASB We know that no one who is born of God sins; but He who was born of God keeps him, and the evil one does not touch him.

Galatians 4:4-5 NASB But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, [5] so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons.

2 Corinthians 5:18-20 NASB [18] Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, [19] namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation. [20] Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.

John 1:12-13 NASB But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, [13] who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

Titus 3:4-5 NASB But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, [5] He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit,

Romans 8:23-30 NASB And not only this, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons, the redemption of our body. [24] For in hope we have been saved, but hope that is seen is not hope; for who hopes for what he already sees? [25] But if we hope for what we do not see, with perseverance we wait eagerly for it. [26] In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; [27] and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. [28] And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. [29] For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; [30] and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.

Ezekiel 37:1-14 NASB The hand of the LORD was upon me, and He brought me out by the Spirit of the LORD and set me down in the middle of the valley; and it was full of bones. [2] He caused me to pass among them round about, and behold, there were very many on the surface of the valley; and lo, they were very dry. [3] He said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord GOD, You know.” [4] Again He said to me, “Prophesy over these bones and say to them, ‘O dry bones, hear the word of the LORD.’ [5] “Thus says the Lord GOD to these bones, ‘Behold, I will cause breath to enter you that you may come to life. [6] ‘I will put sinews on you, make flesh grow back on you, cover you with skin and put breath in you that you may come alive; and you will know that I am the LORD.'” [7] So I prophesied as I was commanded; and as I prophesied, there was a noise, and behold, a rattling; and the bones came together, bone to its bone. [8] And I looked, and behold, sinews were on them, and flesh grew and skin covered them; but there was no breath in them. [9] Then He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they come to life.”‘” [10] So I prophesied as He commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they came to life and stood on their feet, an exceedingly great army. [11] Then He said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel; behold, they say, ‘Our bones are dried up and our hope has perished. We are completely cut off.’ [12] “Therefore prophesy and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold, I will open your graves and cause you to come up out of your graves, My people; and I will bring you into the land of Israel. [13] “Then you will know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves and caused you to come up out of your graves, My people. [14] “I will put My Spirit within you and you will come to life, and I will place you on your own land. Then you will know that I, the LORD, have spoken and done it,” declares the LORD.'”

 

Just the gift for the child in you life this Christmas

Just the gift for the child in you life this Christmas,
the, “Heroes of the Faith” Series from, The Banner of Truth Trust.   On Sale Now!

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This is a picture of all three books next to a ruler and a copy of the the Westminster Confession of Faith, for scale.

The initial Series Set includes: Ignatius, Irenaeus, and Polycarp.  These three, compellingly written and illustrated books, will captivate the attention of the child in your life.  What a wonderful way to spend storytime with them.  There are few other stories more worthy of telling children.  Learning about the early Church Fathers from these brief, colorful, books will stick with your child or grandchild over their lives.  They will know how these men lived out what they believed.  I recommend the entire set.
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Sinclair Ferguson manages to condense his vast knowledge down into stories that will edify children, and the adults reading to them.  The gospel message is proclaimed so simply that your children will hear it and see how it was lived out by these Church Fathers, Heroes of the Faith.  The illustrations are colorful and skillfully done.  Alison Brown’s illustrations will help bring history to life.
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Each hardcover book has a Timeline in the back, and a, “Personal Word to the Parents About Heroes of the Faith” from Sinclair Ferguson.  The books are printed in the U.S.A. and the font size is 15/18pt in size.  These books are well made and should last for years properly taken care of.  I hope you enjoy reading them to your kids and grandchildren as much I enjoyed reading them for the review.

You can purchase your set from the Banner of Truth

or you can buy them individually from Christianbook.com

Irenaeus of Lyons: The Man Who Wrote Books ISBN-13: 9781848710948

Polycarp of Smyrna: The Man Whose Faith Lasted ISBN-13: 9781848710924

Ignatius of Antioch: The Man Who Faced Lions ISBN-13: 9781848710931

Check out the rest of the pictures on my flickr page.

 

The Real Problem is Islam and True Believers.

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Cartoon credit, John R. Houk© March 1, 2013

A friend of mine asked me for a response to this article he read on the net.  Here was my response.

Well, he does what we all do and addresses the issue from his presuppositions. I did the same thing when I wrote my article on the topic. I disagree with him on some points. I think he, like so many others, misses the elephant in the room. Fundamentalist Islam is an evil ideology. Even the so-called moderate Islam, is false and satanic, just like Mormonism, and any other false religion. The only Islam that is not a danger to us is the Islam that doesn’t adhere to the Quran, Hadiths, or Islamic scripture. Just like liberal Christians, Jack-Mormons, and Roman Catholics who are RCC in name only.  The main difference is that Non-violent Muslim voice seem to be in the minority.

In the article there is the lack of a solution to the problem. We as Christians, should be wise and compassionate. It is fine to love people and to want them to be free from oppression. Noting that, why do we have policies that directly prejudice the Christians from those countries, by keeping them out? Why is it our responsibility to bring the Muslims here? Why are their brother Muslims not taking them in? Why are we being guilted by the media and shamed by liberal Christians for being unloving? Seems like Satan’s opinion via his servants is that we should bring them in. Why can’t they stay and fight against the so called Islamic extremists who are ruining their homes? I think we should bring in the Christians who are fleeing certain death. I think we could talk about bringing in women, children, elderly, and handicapped people fleeing from the true Muslims. We would have to put them in internment camps and secure them until it could be determined if they are a threat. If we could determine that they are not fundamentalist Muslims, then I don’t have a problem letting them in through the normal immigration process.

The claims that the alien with Israel was treated well with no other conditions is wrong. When people wanted the rights of an Israelite, they had to become circumcised, believe the God of Israel, and obey Israel’s laws. They became naturalized Israelites. Other sojourners were treated well as long as they peacefully obeyed the laws and were not enemies of Israel. Israel never accepted an enemy in the camp blindly and identified them as, “refugees.” This kind of madness is pure liberal delusion. Fundamentalist Islam is the enemy.  People who are, “true believers” are the enemy of America and her citizens.  Christians are not the only citizens of America. We have the duty of warning people in love that they about to cut everyone’s collective throats. It is not unloving to keep out murdering satanists. Since you can’t easily tell the difference between a fundamentalist Muslim soldier in civilian clothes and an oppressed refugee, we shouldn’t just fling open the doors and the coffers to let them in. Since we are compassionate and loving, we should let the fleeing Christians in. We should look for solutions, like air strikes against the fundamentalist Muslims all over the world, including the ones that are causing the exodus. We should shut down all travel all over the world from and to Islamic countries. We should declare war on fundamentalist Islam everywhere. If the liberals are so quick to declare what the ancient Israelites would do, let me do the same, they would go out in spring with their king and wage war against them with God empowering them to strike down all of the evil of fundamental Islam so that it doesn’t spread. This isn’t out of fear as the liberals would have you believe, but out of a hatred of evil, and a desire to honor God. Of course that would require national repentance and conversion to Christianity. I don’t see that happening anytime soon. I don’t hate Muslims, but I hate fundamentalist Islam. I’ve read the quran. It is an evil lie. “True believers” of Islam are sold out to evil and though it is true that they could hear the gospel and repent, it is also true that they are, and have been, and will continue to kill everyone that fails to convert. So to reiterate, I think he misses the boat a bit, just like so many others do. The real problem is the evil of fundamentalist Islam, not conservative Christians.

If you remove microaggressions and triggers from the Bible?

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Let’s examine what the our favorite Bible verses would look like if we removed microaggressions and triggers from them.

[Matthew 23:27 NASB]
“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs which on the outside appear beautiful, but inside they are full of dead men’s bones and all uncleanness.

Now let’s see what it would look like without microaggressions and triggers.

[Matthew 23:27 NASB]
“to you, scribes and Pharisees,  For you are like washed  which on the beautiful, but inside they are full of bones and all.

[Acts 2:38 NASB]
Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

Now let’s see what it would look like without microaggressions and triggers.

[Acts 2:38 NASB]
Peter said to them, “, and each of you be baptized in the name of for the forgiveness of your ; and you will receive the gift of the Spirit.

[Mark 15:24 NASB]
And they *crucified Him, and *divided up His garments among themselves, casting lots for them to decide what each man should take.

Now let’s see what it would look like without microaggressions and triggers.

[Mark 15:24 NASB]
And they , and divided up garments among themselves, casting lots for them to decide what each should take.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11 NASB [9] Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, [10] nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. [11] Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God.

Now let’s see what it would look like without microaggressions and triggers.

1 Corinthians 6:9-11 NASB [9] Or do you know that the will inherit the kingdom of ? Do be deceived; neither nor , nor , nor , nor , [10] nor thieves, nor the , nor , nor , nor , will inherit the kingdom of . [11] Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the and in the of our .

Acts 7:55-60 NASB But being full of the Holy Spirit, he gazed intently into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God; [56] and he said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened up and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” [57] But they cried out with a loud voice, and covered their ears and rushed at him with one impulse. [58] When they had driven him out of the city, they began stoning him; and the witnesses laid aside their robes at the feet of a young man named Saul. [59] They went on stoning Stephen as he called on the Lord and said, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit!” [60] Then falling on his knees, he cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them!” Having said this, he fell asleep.

Now let’s see what it would look like without microaggressions and triggers.

Acts 7:55-60 NASB But being full of the  Spirit, he gazed intently into heaven and saw the glory of , and  standing at the right hand of ; [56] and he said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened up and the  of standing at the right hand of .” [57] But they cried out with a loud voice, and covered their ears and rushed at him with one impulse. [58] When they had him out of the city, they began him; and the witnesses laid aside their robes at the feet of a young named Saul. [59] They went on Stephen as called on the and said, “, receive my spirit!” [60] Then falling on knees,  out with a voice, “, do not hold this against them!” Having said this, fell asleep.

Are we getting the picture yet?  When you start acting as the thought police, making up rules for society that are totalitarian, rules that have as their authority the fallen sin nature of man, rules that require complete adherence, so much so that you must be silent, then you remove God, His will, sin, human sinfulness, the atoning work of Christ, and the gospel from the God’s word itself.  We must never consider fallen human desires to be accepted over and above what God has declared and decreed in His Holy Word!

It is not a God given right to go through life and never experience trauma or shame.  Nobody should demand or expect this.  Because we live in a fallen sinful world, there will be sin.  You will have to deal with it.  You must deal with it.  Making laws against everything that is potentially offensive to someone is ridiculously ludicrous.  We need to hear that we are sinners.  We need to understand how transcendently holy, good, righteous, and authoritative God is.   We need to contrast our lowly, sinful, unrighteousness, and sinfulness, to God.  We need to be offended and traumatized.  This is how God’s Spirit brings us to new life, repentance, and faith.  Remove microaggressions and triggers from society, and you get a silent, malignant, homogeneous, sinful, tumor.  The truth is offensive to those who reside in a lie of self-deceptive idolatry.  Don’t have the golden calf of microaggressions and triggers.  Don’t enthrone yourself as the god of your life.  Repent and believe, on and in, the finished work of the resurrected, Christ Jesus, our Lord and Savior.

The Crossway, E.S.V. Men’s Devotional Bible, Not Your Typical Devotional Bible.

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If you’re like me, you steer clear of devotional Bibles.  I have found that most of them offer very little in the way of useful or relevant information.  Most of the time it is just happy, slappy, Osteenesque, self-help mumbo jumbo.  Rather than aiding, it usually distracts and is discouraging.  I wonder to myself, “Who could be helped by this nonsense?”  Seriously, who writes this twaddle?  It is not just men’s devotionals that suffer this malaise either.  Women have the same nonsense foisted upon them, perhaps even worse.

So imagine my curiosity when I heard that Crossway was going to make a devotional Bible.  We’ve come to trust them and the E.S.V. over the years.  One of the quickest ways you can incur my scrutiny is to exclaim, “Ahem, over here!  We have a devotional Bible for your consideration Sir!”  Oh, now that is cause for inspection isn’t it kids?  When they offered one for review, I gladly accepted.  I wanted to see for myself what works had been wrought under the cover of night…

I was delighted to see that it far excelled the usual fare.  No cotton candy, no fluff-n-stuff, no silly self help guru quotes, no Sarah Young extra-Biblical revelation, just sound exposition, and application.  The devotional articles explain the text.  They properly connect the heart and the head, as they engage both in a real, and valuable way.  

We are told in the Introduction that the goal was, “…for the heart to be strengthened by grace…” Hebrews 13:9.  You might wonder what that means in the context of a Men’s devotional Bible.  What it means is that the book introductions,  devotional articles, and supplemental articles, are theologically accurate and connected to the text you are reading.  All people have a theology.  

They perhaps don’t know it, but they do.  Theology is important.  Without accurately understanding who God is and who we are in relationship to Him, how would we know if we were worshipping the one true God or an idol we had constructed?  These articles accomplish the goal of strengthening the heart by grace, through facilitating our learning Biblical truths.  

The Bible I was sent arrived undamaged.  

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It was a hardback volume that is case bound.

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It included a dust jacket.  For those of you who have been reading my blog for a while, you know how I feel about dust jackets.  (hint, I don’t like them.  Completely a personal preference thing.)  The spine is sewn to increase flexibility and durability.  This, in my opinion is a necessity.  Glued bindings on a book that is meant to be used extensively are a horrible idea.  Publishers that do that are only interested in selling cheap product to be replaced over and over.  If you had to transfer your notes, underlines, and highlights, every 6 months to a new Bible, you’d be perturbed.  Thanks to Crossway’s experience as a Bible publisher, they know better.  Usually when a publisher has work done in China the product quality begins to suffer.  It seems Crossway has been able to keep the quality control standard high, while having this Bible printed and bound in China.

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The hardback edition I was sent does not have any ribbon markers.  The cover matches the dust jacket in a satin finish, black color.  The only writing on the cover is on the spine where it says, “ESV Men’s Devotional Bible, Crossway” in gold print.

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The spine has been rounded.  There are understated black decorative head and tail bands.  The page corners themselves have not been rounded and there is no page edge gilt.

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The inside paper liner matches the cover in color.  There is one presentation page followed by a couple title pages and publishers information/copyright page.

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After that, there is the table of contents.

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An interesting print feature in this Bible is the use of gold colored text for things like, titles, headings, chapter headings, and page numbers.  It is and unassuming gold color, so it adds just the right amount of pop without glaringly drawing your attention away from the text.

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Drop caps are utilized at the beginning of each supplemental article. I found that this sets the article apart from the pages of Biblical text so you can spot them easily.  At the bottom of each devotion the page number of the next one is indicated.  Since there are 365, a person could use them as a daily reading plan and read from one to the next daily.

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The Biblical text is arranged in a double column, paragraph format, in black text.  The text of the Bible is consistently inked and printed in an 8.5 pt. Lexicon font.

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The devotionals are printed in a 7.5 pt. Gotham font.  The text is dark black and contrasts nicely against the bright white, 36 g.s.m. paper, with an opacity rating of 83.   Line matching was not employed however, the opacity of the paper is sufficient to limit the ghosting effect.

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There are no cross references and very limited footnotes.  This is not intended to be used as a reference Bible or study Bible.  It adheres to the title of Devotional Bible very strictly.  It far exceeds every devotional Bible I have ever read. The devotions are gospel focused and faithful to the truths of God.

I’ve included a list of the contributors.  As you can see, with men of God like these, sharing their hard won knowledge and wisdom with us, we can be edified and encouraged.

 

Devotion Contributors Article Contributors Article Title
Christopher Ash Thabiti Anyabwile A Man’s Inner Life
Alistair Begg Bryan Chapell The Message of the Bible
Jon Bloom Greg Gilbert Life in the Local Church
Mike Bullmore Dave Harvey Calling
Kevin Cawley Kelly Kapic Communion with God
Bryan Chapell Dave Kraft Leadership
Sam Crabtree Tom Nelson A Man’s Work
Andy Davis Ray Ortlund Fathering
Jason DeRouchie Michael Patton Doubt
Dan Doriani David Powlison A Man’s Identity
Zack Eswine Tim Savage Marriage
Greg Gilbert Ed Welch Pornography
Aaron Golstein Jared Wilson The Gospel and Daily Life
Graeme Goldsworthy
Jim Hamilton
John Hannah
Justin Holcomb
Paul House
Kent Hughes
Ryan Kelly
Julius Kim
Dave Kraft
Michael Lumpkin
Jason Meyer
Gary Millar
Paul Miller
Andy Naselli
Tom Nelson
Doug O’Donnell
Dane Ortlund
Rob Plummer
Mike Reeves
Phil Ryken
J.J. Seid
Jay Sklar
Colin Smith
Scotty Smith
Sam Storms
Brian Tabb
Eric Thoennes
Joe Thorn
Stephen Um
Miles Van Pelt
Jared Wilson
Todd Wilson
Fowler White
Bob Yarbrough

Don’t forget to check out the pictures on my flickr page.

Pick up your copy on Amazon or Christianbook

ISBN-13: 9781433548413

Dimensions: 8.38 X 5.38 (inches)