• Blessed Are Those Who Hunger and Thirst for Righteousness Article by Dan Doriani

    FROM TABLETALK | June 2017

    The first four beatitudes all describe the needs of a disciple. “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness” is the last in the series (Matt. 5:3–6). Jesus first said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven” (v. 3). To be poor in spirit is to know one’s spiritual neediness and dependence on God (Ps. 34:6; Zeph. 3:12). This beatitude leads to the second. The poor in spirit mourn their poverty (Matt. 5:4). They mourn their own sin first, then mourn all sin. This is a blessed mourning, since God will comfort those … View Resource

  • To Be Blessed Article by Brandon Crowe

    FROM TABLETALK | June 2017

    Bless your heart.” “Have a blessed day.” “God bless this house.” “Let us say a blessing.” The words bless, blessed, and blessing are thrown around quite a bit in everyday conversation. So, when we read about the blessed ones in the Beatitudes (Matt. 5:3–12), the impact of the concept of blessing may get lost in translation. What sort of blessings are in view in the Beatitudes? Are these principles we are to strive for? Are they spiritual realities that are al-ready true? Are they unattainable ideals? Such questions are closely related to the approach one takes to the Sermon on … View Resource

  • Absorbing and Applying God’s Word Article by Robert Ingram

    FROM TABLETALK | May 2017

    In The Horse and His Boy, C.S. Lewis, there is a certain refrain: “In the presence of the Tisroc (may he live forever), the only acceptable response was the enforced litany, ‘To hear is to obey.’” Lewis repeats this refrain to convince his readers that the culture of Calormene, and in particular the capital city of Tashbaan, was one of unquestioned obedience. Tashbaan is reminiscent of all that we envision of a premodern tenth-century Arabian kingdom. Immediate and full obedience to the bidding of the Tisroc (may he live forever), whether feigned, fearful, or willing, was the expected cultural … View Resource

  • Every Thought Captive Article by Burk Parsons

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2017

    In our day, many Christians have a view of church history that is a popular, but unfortunate, caricature. They believe the church started in the first century, but then soon fell into apostasy. The true faith was lost until Martin Luther recovered it in the sixteenth century. Then, nothing at all significant happened until the twentieth century, when Billy Graham started hosting his evangelistic crusades. Regrettably, we form caricatures of history on account of our ignorance of history. Too often, our historical awareness is sorely lacking. What’s more, we don’t fully know where we are, because we don’t know where … View Resource

  • Reformed Piety and Practice Article by R. Scott Clark

    FROM TABLETALK | April 2017

    When Martin Luther (1483–1546) entered the Augustinian convent at Erfurt in 1505, it was a considered decision and the fulfillment of a vow he had made when he cried, “St. Anne, help me! I will become a monk.” So he did.  Luther entered one of the most rigorous and observant orders; the rule of the Augustinian monks was demanding. It required them to have all food and clothing in common. They were committed to a life of poverty and severe self-denying piety. Required hours of prayer included predawn services and services at 6 a.m., 9 a.m., noon, 3 p.m., just … View Resource

  • What Is Shaping You? Article by Nancy Guthrie

    FROM TABLETALK | March 2017

    There’s a section in department stores these days called “shapewear.” It’s in both women’s and men’s clothing. These stores are banking on our concern with the shape of our bodies and our willingness to invest in garments that promise to give us the shape we’re looking for. But when we read Paul’s letter to the church in Rome, we discover it’s not what is shaping our bodies that he is most concerned about. He’s concerned about what is shaping our perspective, our priorities, our pursuits, and our opinions. He writes: Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed … View Resource

  • Caring for Widows Article by R.C. Sproul

    FROM TABLETALK | February 2017

    In biblical terms, to be religious does not necessarily mean you are godly. To be religious can mean simply that you’re involved in the trappings of religion, that you may be a member of a false religion. Yet, the Scriptures sometimes speak of religion in a positive sense, in the sense of practice that is the fruit of true faith in Christ and commitment to His Word. The Apostle James focuses on religion as the practice of those who have true faith in Jesus, and he says that true religion demonstrates the presence of saving trust in the Lord (James … View Resource

  • Toward a Christian View of Economics Article by Albert Mohler

    FROM TABLETALK | February 2017

    Regrettably, many American Christians know little about economics. Furthermore, many Christians assume that the Bible has nothing at all to say about economics. But a biblical worldview actually has a great deal to teach us on economic matters. The meaning of work, the value of labor, and other economic issues are all part of the biblical worldview. Christians must allow the economic principles found in Scripture to shape our thinking. Here, then, are twelve theses for what a Christian understanding of economics must do. 1. It must have God’s glory as its greatest aim. For Christians, all economic theory begins … View Resource

  • Biblical Success Article by Iain Duguid

    FROM TABLETALK | January 2017

    What does it mean to succeed? We typically think success involves reaching particular personal and professional goals—prospering financially, being respected by peers, raising a solid family, and so on. We measure success in terms of receiving honor, reaching the top, being admired, getting rich, or being noticed. Meanwhile, failure means being poor or insignificant, being unpopular or disliked, or being the object of shame. Even in ministry, we often rate “success” as a large or rapidly growing congregation, combined with a reputation as a fine pastor or preacher, while “failure” means a small or shrinking flock or having to leave … View Resource

  • Faithfulness and Fruitfulness Article by Nicholas Batzig

    FROM TABLETALK | January 2017

    Richard Greenham, one of the renowned Puritan theologians of the sixteenth century, was well loved in his day for the spiritual help he was to many believers in England, as well to his fellow Puritan ministers. Quite a number of Puritan pastors would send their congregants to Greenham for what they considered to be the more difficult “cases of conscience.” Nevertheless, Greenham expressed regret over not seeing much fruit in his own congregation in Dry Drayton—the exceedingly small rural town in which he pastored—during his almost twenty-one-year ministry there. Reflecting on the spiritual state of his congregation, Greenham spoke of … View Resource

  • True Success Article by Burk Parsons

    FROM TABLETALK | January 2017

    Well done. Great job. Good work. As children, we loved to hear words of encouragement from our fathers, mothers, grandparents, teachers, and coaches. I fondly remember my father’s approving smile and my mother’s loving embrace when I did a good job. Truth be told, as adults we still want to be told we’ve done well. We love to be encouraged when we’ve been successful. God has given us an inherent desire to be successful. We want to be successful men, women, parents, grandparents, employees, students, and Christians. We want to succeed not only because it feels good to succeed, but … View Resource

  • Vocational Success Article by Eric Watkins

    FROM TABLETALK | January 2017

    Whether in the areas of parenting, relationships, or our vocations, we all srive for success. Vocational success lies at the heart of the American dream, which teaches that if one works hard enough and long enough, he will most likely succeed. But how do we measure success from a distinctively Christian point of view? Is it by how much money we make? How many things we own? Is it in the number of people who think of us as successful? In Matthew 25:14–30, Jesus tells the parable of three servants, the first two of whom were found faithful, but the … View Resource

  • When I Don’t Feel Successful Article by J.R. Vassar

    FROM TABLETALK | January 2017

    Since Adam and Eve bit on the first temptation, failure has been a part of our human experience. As God’s image bearers, we are capable of remarkable things. But as fallen image bearers, we are simultaneously capable of terrible things. From small mistakes to colossal meltdowns, we are all too familiar with the pain and shame of failure. But, in His grace, God redeems the failures of His people, and He will use them to shape and form our lives. The Beauty of the Gospel The human heart craves justification. This is why we make excuses, shift blame, or look … View Resource

  • Why You Probably Don’t Need a Quiet Time Article by Donald Whitney

    FROM TABLETALK | January 2017

    You’ve always believed you should have what evangelicals commonly call a “quiet time.” Sometimes called “daily devotions,” a quiet time typically consists of Bible reading and prayer. Beyond these, the event can be highly individualized in terms of timing, duration, location, and content. Many add meditation on Scripture to their reading of it. Others will include some form of journaling. Some will append a brief devotional reading from another book. Generally, the goal is to feed the soul and commune with God. Lately, however, your devotional habits have languished. In light of the struggle, privately you’ve been doing a little … View Resource

  • Mothers in the Church Article by Jen Wilkin

    FROM TABLETALK | December 2016

    One of my favorite books as a child was the classic by P.D. Eastman, Are You My Mother? It’s the story of a baby bird who falls from his nest and goes in search of his mama. I would anxiously turn the pages as he asked a hound dog, an old car, and a host of other creatures and objects his soulful question: “Are you my mother?” As the little bird goes along searching, he passes right near his mother without being aware. The text reads: “He did not know what his mother looked like. He went right by her. … View Resource