Friday, March 7, 2014

All Around the Web - March 7, 2014

Justin Taylor - The OOOOOPSI Model of American Media Outrage Coverage
Do people still use bookmarks in their browser? If so, bookmark this one from Jon Swerens:
  • Opportunity: First, we need a hot-button event that is a proper catalyst for the cycle. Recent examples were supplied by Chick-fil-A, Hobby Lobby, Susan G. Komen, and now, Arizona’s proposed law.
  • Outrage: Next, those on the opposite side of the culture wars make a lot of noise about “fairness” and “bigotry” and “tolerance.” Maybe they have a point, or maybe not, but it’s an important step in the news cycle.
  • Opposition: Then, the national media by and large adopts the definitions brought to them by the outraged. For example, in this week’s Arizona story, the media labeled the bill “anti-gay,” without the scare quotes. Such labeling was a tremendous victory for the outraged.
  • Oversimplification: As a part of its coverage, the media fails to add any nuance to the debate or closely examine the actual facts of what’s being argued, preferring to cover the horse race of two competing interests beating each other up.
  • Overreach: At some point, a mainline media outlet gets too cocky and goes a step too far in its boosterism. Other media momentarily shrink back in embarrassment.

Church Pastor - 7 Helpful and Overlooked Books for Preaching
J. Scott Duvall and J. Daniel Hays, Grasping God’s Word: A Hands-On Approach to Reading, Interpreting, and Applying the Bible (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2012). 

Why is a book on hermeneutics on a list of preaching books? The message of the sermon must be grasped at the interpretive level, so the meaning of the passage is understood and then emphasized by the sermon. Expository preaching and sound hermeneutics go hand in glove. Many preachers run quickly past meaning to supposed “relevance” without taking the time to grasp what the Spirit intended. Accompanied with the very helpful workbook, this is an excellent resource, using either as a refresher or introduction to the discipline of hermeneutics. This is one of the key resources that are required in our church’s leadership training.

Christopher Ash, The Priority of Preaching (Ross-shire, Scotland: Christian Focus Publications, 2010). 
This is a simple and concise treatment of good, biblical preaching. This is a helpful book for pastors new to expository preaching. One significant highlight is Ash’s appendix entitled “Give God the Microphone!” in which he clearly outlines a solid defense for consecutive, expository preaching.

Alec Motyer, Preaching: Simple Teaching on Simply Preaching (Ross-shire, Scotland: Christian Focus Publications, 2013).
This book provides the reader with the opportunity to sit at the feet of a great biblical scholar who has spent his life expounding the text of Scripture. His insights are wise, carefully measured, and warmly pastoral. This is a grandfather of expository preaching to whom you should listen.

Dale Ralph Davis, The Word Became Fresh: How to Preach from the Old Testament Narrative Texts (Ross-shire, Scotland: Christian Focus Publications, 2007).

Davis is a master of expounding OT narrative. Many are familiar with his excellent expositional commentaries of OT books, especially those that concentrate on narrative portions. The Bible is mostly narrative; yet, many preachers struggle to expound this Spirit-given genre. Davis is a great entryway to understanding how to preach narrative with effectiveness, paying close attention to the original context while drawing out its theological relevance.

Michael Fabarez, Preaching That Changes Lives (Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers, 2002).
Application in preaching is one of the most misunderstood and, ironically, misapplied disciplines. The great Welsh preacher, Geoff Thomas, has rightly noted, “Preaching that lacks application is the bane of the modern Reformed pulpit.” Most good preaching books say something about application, yet Fabarez’s work is largely dedicated to helping the expositor “through the matrix of application” (xiv). He builds on J. I. Packer’s dictum that “Preaching is essentially teaching plus application,” showing preachers how to preach in such a way that spurs life-change.

John Stonestreet - Is the Hookup Culture a Myth?
According to writers at the Smithsonian blog, the hookup culture is a myth. A new paper from the American Sociological Society says that college students today aren’t having any more sex than their parents’ generation. Statistics show that they have about the same number of sexual partners as well. Thus the Smithsonian says that hookup culture is a big myth.

But not so fast. While the total numbers of sexual encounters and partners aren’t that different from the previous generation’s doesn’t mean the hookup culture doesn’t exist. In fact, the same study suggests more young adults today report casual, no-strings-attached sex (as if there were such a thing). Most likely, what all of this means is that in 10-20 years, we’ll continue to see the alarming rate of divorce, fractured relationships, and sexual brokenness we do today – or worse. And that’s not good news at all.

The Council of Biblical Manhood & Womanhood - Pursuing Your Wife: Embracing a War-like Posture
Scripture is pretty clear on how men should love their wives—like Jesus loved and served the Church (Eph. 5:24).  Christ, in his pursuit of us, gave his life for us.  Jesus sets the stage from the beginning concerning what this pursuit should look like, so why do we have so many dudes in our churches that are failing in this endeavor?

Because dating and pursuing one’s wife is such an incredibly important issue, we are going to begin a multi-part series here at Manual encouraging you, urging you, and coming-off-the-top-rope-with-a-biblical-manhood-elbow-drop into you to challenge you to raise the bar in how you date and pursue your wife.

There is no close second, bro.

There is no other relationship, in any other environment in this world, which so closely reflects Christ and the Church.  There is no other replacement for you as a husband.  There are no audibles you can call.  There are no other options.  You are option one.  You are the only one that can make her feel loved, cherished, pursued, and valued.  It’s all you.  There’s no one else.  Period.

NPR - 74,476 Reasons You Should Always Get The Bigger Pizza
One day last year, an engineer and I went to a pizza place for lunch. The engineer told me he wasn't very hungry, but he said he was going to get the 12-inch medium instead of the 8-inch small — because the medium was more than twice as big as the small, and it cost only a little bit more. This sort of blew my mind.

So I went big on the pizza-value question. The graph below is based on 74,476 prices from 3,678 pizza places around the country. To see how the price of pizzas changes with size — and how much more pizza you get when you get a large — drag the slider at the bottom the graph.

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