Piper on Children, God's Commands, and the Gospel

John Piper has written a helpful post at the Desiring God blog titled "Why Require Unregenerate Children to Act Like They’re Good?"

Piper answers the question in the title of his post with three points.

  1. For children, external, unspiritual conformity to God’s commanded patterns of behavior is better than external, unspiritual non-conformity to those patterns of behavior.
  2. Requiring obedience from children in conformity with God’s will confronts them with the meaning of sin in relation to God, the nature of their own depravity, and their need for inner transformation by the power of grace through the gospel of Christ.
  3. The marks of devotion, civility, and manners (“please,” “thank you,” and good eye contact) are habits that, God willing, are filled later with grace and become more helpful ways of blessing others and expressing a humble heart.

I think many parents with young children struggle with this issue. Piper offers wise counsel so make sure to read the entire post.

Gospel Growth

Audio from the 2009 Matthias Media conference is available to download at peoplegrowth.org. The conference was titled "Gospel Growth = People Growth" and focused on how gospel growth happens in people and through people. Below is a list of topics addressed at the conference.

  • D.A. Carson - Ministry, Motives, and Mentors (mp3)
  • David Helm - The Personal Work of Gospel Witness (mp3)
  • Mark Dever - The Four Ps of Evangelical Ministry (mp3)
  • Phillip Jensen - Biblical Theology of Ministry 1: The Aim and Method of Ministry (audio unavailable)
  • Phillip Jensen - Biblical Theology of Ministry 2: All God's People as Prophets and Disciple-Makers (mp3)
  • Phillip Jensen - What is Training? People not Programs (mp3)
  • Marty Sweeney - Obstacles to Training (mp3)
  • David Helm - The Pastor's Work of Gospel Training (mp3)
  • Tony Payne - Training and Gospel Resources (mp3)
  • Phillip Jensen - How a Training Mentality Leads to Gospel Workers (mp3)

The Trellis and the Vine

Tim Chester has written a review of The Trellis and the Vine, a new book on church ministry. Some of my fellow elders have ordered copies and I'm looking forward to borrowing the book from them when they're finished reading it.

Make sure to watch the video below of Mark Dever recommending The Trellis and the Vine.

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-FYKog12ld4&color1=0xb1b1b1&color2=0xcfcfcf&hl=en_US&feature=player_embedded&fs=1]

(If you're reading this in an RSS reader you may need to click through to the blog to see the video clip)