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Recommended Reading
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Christ Alone

The Uniqueness of Jesus As Savior
 By: Stephen Wellum
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Historians and theologians alike have long recognized that at the heart of the sixteenth-century Protestant Reformation were five declarations (or “solas”) that distinguished the movement from other expressions of the Christian faith.

Five hundred years later, we live in a different time with fresh challenges to our faith. Yet these rallying cries of the Reformation continue to speak to us, addressing a wide range of contemporary issues. The Five Solas series will help you understand the historical and biblical context of the five solas and how to live out the relevance of Reformation theology today.

In Christ Alone, Stephen Wellum considers Christ’s singular uniqueness and significance biblically, historically, and today, in our pluralistic and postmodern age. He examines the historical roots of the doctrine, especially in the Reformation era, and then shows how the uniqueness of Christ has come under specific attack today. Then, he walks us through the storyline of Scripture, from Christ’s unique identity and work as prophet, priest, and king, to the application of his work to believers and our covenantal union with him to show that apart from Christ there is no salvation. Wellum shows that we must recover a robust biblical and theological doctrine of Christ’s person and work in the face of today’s challenges and explains why a fresh appraisal of the Reformation understanding of Christ alone is needed today.

Recommended Reading for August 12 & 13, 2017
Sermon: "Solus Christus: Christ Alone"  |  Chris Johnson
Acts 4:7-12, Colossians 1:15-23

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Crazy Lazy
A warning against laziness
 By: Alistair Begg
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Laziness is often seen as a bit of a joke the stereotypical student who thinks each day has one 9 o' clock; the prolific procrastinator; or just the ordinary person quick to make excuses when a hard job comes along. We are all too comfortable with laziness, too sleepy ourselves to notice the dangers a lifestyle like this brings. In Crazy Lazy, a book short enough even for the laziest of readers, Alistair Begg urges us to take laziness seriously. He delves into the book of Proverbs to warn us of the devastating effect it has on ourselves, our relationships with others and our relationship with God. This book not only show you that laziness if not of God, but will challenge you to tackle it head on, and encourage you that a life lived today can be so much more fulfilling than one constantly postponed until tomorrow.


Recomended Reading for October 14 & 15, 2017
Sermon: "Crazy Lazy"  |  Chris Johnson
Proverbs 24:30-34

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Don't Waste Your Life
 By: John Piper
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John Piper writes, "I will tell you what a tragedy is. I will show you how to waste your life. Consider this story from the February 1998 Reader's Digest: A couple 'took early retirement from their jobs in the Northeast five years ago when he was 59 and she was 51. Now they live in Punta Gorda, Florida, where they cruise on their 30-foot trawler, play softball and collect shells. . . .' Picture them before Christ at the great day of judgment: 'Look, Lord. See my shells.' That is a tragedy.

"God created us to live with a single passion to joyfully display his supreme excellence in all the spheres of life. The wasted life is the life without this passion. God calls us to pray and think and dream and plan and work not to be made much of, but to make much of him in every part of our lives."

Most people slip by in life without a passion for God, spending their lives on trivial diversions, living for comfort and pleasure, and perhaps trying to avoid sin. This book will warn you not to get caught up in a life that counts for nothing. It will challenge you to live and die boasting in the cross of Christ and making the glory of God your singular passion. If you believe that to live is Christ and to die is gain, read this book, learn to live for Christ, and don't waste your life!

Recommended Reading for September 9 & 10, 2017
Sermon: "How To Find Fulfillment"  |  Chris Johnson
Ecclesiastes

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Faith Alone
The Doctrine of Justification
 By: Thomas R. Schreiner
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Historians and theologians have long recognized that at the heart of the sixteenth-century Protestant Reformation were five declarations, often referred to as the ‘solas’: sola scriptura, solus Christus, sola gratia, sola fide, and soli Deo gloria. These five statements summarize much of what the Reformation was about, and they distinguish Protestantism from other expressions of the Christian faith. Protestants place ultimate and final authority in the Scriptures, acknowledge the work of Christ alone as sufficient for redemption, recognize that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone, and seek to do all things for God’s glory.

In Faith Alone—The Doctrine of Justification renowned biblical scholar Thomas Schreiner looks at the historical and biblical roots of the doctrine of justification. He summarizes the history of the doctrine, looking at the early church and the writings of several of the Reformers. Then, he turns his attention to the Scriptures and walks readers through an examination of the key texts in the Old and New Testament. He discusses whether justification is transformative or forensic and introduces readers to some of the contemporary challenges to the Reformation teaching of sola fide, with particular attention to the new perspective on Paul.

Five hundred years after the Reformation, the doctrine of justification by faith alone still needs to be understood and proclaimed. In Faith Alone you will learn how the rallying cry of “sola fide” is rooted in the Scriptures and how to apply this sola in a fresh way in light of many contemporary challenges.

Recommended Reading for July 29 & 30, 2017
Sermon: "Sola Fide"  |  Chris Johnson
Galatians 3:1-14

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God's Glory Alone
 By: David Vandrunen
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Historians and theologians have long recognized that at the heart of the sixteenth-century Protestant Reformation were five declarations, often referred to as the "solas": sola scriptura, solus Christus, sola gratia, sola fide, and soli Deo gloria. These five statements summarize much of what the Reformation was about, and they distinguish Protestantism from other expressions of the Christian faith. Protestants place ultimate and final authority in the Scriptures, acknowledge the work of Christ alone as sufficient for redemption, recognize that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone, and seek to do all things for God’s glory.

In God’s Glory Alone—The Majestic Heart of Christian Faith and Life, renowned scholar David VanDrunen looks at the historical and biblical roots of the idea that all glory belongs to God alone. He examines the development of this theme in the Reformation, in subsequent Reformed theology and confessions, and in contemporary theologians who continue to be inspired by the conviction that all glory belongs to God. Then he turns to the biblical story of God's glory, beginning with the pillar of cloud and fire revealed to Israel, continuing through the incarnation, death, and exaltation of the Lord Jesus Christ, and culminating in Christ's Second Coming and the glorification of his people. In light of these wonderful biblical themes he concludes by addressing several of today's great cultural challenges and temptations—such as distraction and narcissism—and reflecting on how commitment to God's glory alone fortifies us to live godly lives in this present evil age.
 

Recommended Reading for August 26 & 27, 2017
Sermon: "Soli Deo Gloria: Glory to God Alone"  |  Brad Hayen
Psalm 8

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God's Word Alone
The Authority of Scripture
 By: Matthew Barrett
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Historians and theologians alike have long recognized that at the heart of the sixteenth-century Protestant Reformation were five declarations (or “solas”) that distinguished the movement from other expressions of the Christian faith.

Five hundred years later, we live in a different time with fresh challenges to our faith. Yet these rallying cries of the Reformation continue to speak to us, addressing a wide range of contemporary issues. The Five Solas series will help you understand the historical and biblical context of the five solas and how to live out the relevance of Reformation theology today.

In God’s Word Alone—The Authority of Scripture, scholar and pastor Matthew Barrett looks at the historical and biblical roots of the doctrine that Scripture alone is the final and decisive authority for God’s people. He examines the development of this theme in the Reformation and traces the crisis that followed resulting in a shift away from the authority of Scripture. Barrett shows that we need to recover a robust doctrine of Scripture’s authority in the face of today’s challenges and why a solid doctrinal foundation built on God’s Word is the best hope for the future of the church.


Recomended Reading for August 19 & 20, 2017
Sermon: "Sola Scriptura:Scripture Alone"  |  Brad Hayen
2 Timothy 3:14 - 4:4

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Grace Alone
Salvation as a Gift of God
 By: Carl. R. Trueman
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Historians and theologians alike have long recognized that at the heart of the sixteenth-century Protestant Reformation were the five solas: sola scriptura, solus Christus, sola gratia, sola fide, and soli Deo gloria. These five solas do not merely summarize what the Reformation was all about but have served to distinguish Protestantism ever since. They set Protestants apart in a unique way as those who place ultimate and final authority in the Scriptures, acknowledge the work of Christ alone as sufficient for redemption, recognize that salvation is by grace alone through faith alone, and seek to not only give God all of the glory but to do all things vocationally for his glory.

2017 will mark the 500th anniversary of the Reformation. And yet, even in the twenty-first century we need the Reformation more than ever. As James Montgomery Boice said not long ago, while the Puritans sought to carry on the Reformation, today “we barely have one to carry on, and many have even forgotten what that great spiritual revolution was all about.” Therefore, we “need to go back and start again at the very beginning. We need another Reformation.”[1] In short, it is crucial not only to remember what the solas of the Reformation were all about, but also to apply these solas in a fresh way in light of many contemporary challenges.

[1]James Montgomery Boice, “Preface,” in Here We Stand: A Call from Confessing Evangelicals (Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 1996), 12.

Recommended Reading for August 5 & 6, 2017
Sermon: "Sola Gratia: Grace Alone"  |  Chris Johnson
Ephesians 2:1-10

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In My Place Condemned He Stood
Celebrating the Glory of the Atonement
 By: J.I. Packer & Mark Dever

An important anthology that reaffirms the classic doctrine of substitutionary atonement and counters the ongoing attacks against it.

If ever there was a time and a need for an enthusiastic reaffirmation of the biblical doctrine of substitutionary atonement, it is now. With this foundational tenet under widespread attack, J. I. Packer and Mark Dever's anthology plays an important role, issuing a clarion call to readers to stand firm in the truth.

In My Place Condemned He Stood combines three classic articles by Packer-"The Heart of the Gospel"; his Tyndale Biblical Theology Lecture, "What Did the Cross Achieve"; and his introductory essay to John Owen's The Death of Death in the Death of Christ-with Dever's recent article, "Nothing but the Blood." It also features a foreword by the four principals of Together for the Gospel: Dever, Ligon Duncan, C. J. Mahaney, and Al Mohler. Thoughtful readers looking for a compact classic on this increasingly controversial doctrine need look no farther than this penetrating volume.

Recommeded Reading for September 30 & October 1, 2017
Sermon: "Man of Sorrows"  |  Chris Johnson
Isaiah 53:1-12

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Overcoming Fear, Worry and Anxiety
 By: Elyse M. Fitzpatrick
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Elyse Fitzpatrick, coauthor of Women Helping Women (a Gold Medallion Finalist), offers practical advice for conquering the paralyzing emotions many women encounter as they battle difficult, often overwhelming concerns about rebellious children, problems in the workplace or home, health issues, financial difficulties, and more.

In the Bible, God gives guidance and offers the true solution to our anxieties and fears. Overcoming Fear, Worry, and Anxiety accesses this information to help women—

  • Identify the source of fear, worry, and anxiety
  • Transform fearful thoughts into peaceful confidence
  • Discover specific strategies for overcoming anxiety

Women will find comfort and encouragement through real-life examples of how others, including Elyse, cast their cares upon God and experience His strength and love.



Recommended Reading for October 7 & 8, 2017
Sermon: "The Peace of God"  |  Chris Johnson
Philippians 4:4-9

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The Treasure Principle
 By: Randy Alcorn
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Bestselling author Randy Alcorn introduced readers to a revolution in material freedom and radical generosity with the release of the original The Treasure Principle in 2001. Now the revision to the compact, perennial bestseller includes a provocative new concluding chapter depicting God asking a believer questions about his stewardship over material resources. 

Jesus spent more time talking about money and possessions than about heaven and hell combined. But too often we’ve overlooked or misunderstood his most profound teaching on this topic, from his words in Matthew 6. Jesus offers us life-changing investment advice. He actually wants us to store up treasures for ourselves—just not here on earth. Instead, he urges us to store our treasure in heaven, where they will await us, and last forever. We can’t take it with us—but we can send it on ahead!

Readers are moved from the realms of thoughtful Bible exposition into the highly personal arena of everyday life. Because when Jesus told His followers to “lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven,” He intended that they discover an astounding secret: how joyful giving brings God maximum glory and His children maximum pleasure. In The Treasure Principle, you’ll unearth a radical teaching of Jesus—a secret wrapped up in giving. 

Once you discover this secret, life will never look the same. And you won’t want it to be. 

Recommended Reading for September 16 & 17, 2017
Sermon: "Money Isn't Everything"  |  Chris Johnson
Proverbs 23:1-11

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Why God?
 By: Greg Laurie
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Sometimes, in the pain of difficult life experiences, we look to heaven for quick explanations. But we donít always get the answers weíre looking for. When Jobís whole world caved in on him, he didnít understand why God allowed suffering and grief to crash into his life. The prophet Daniel might have wondered the same thing... along with Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. What do you do when questions burn in your heart and heaven seems silent? Hereís how to stay on course and find your way when all the lights go out... and answers seem just out of reach.

Recommended Reading for September 2 & 3, 2017
Sermon: "Seeing God Through Suffering"  |  Chris Johnson
The Book of Job

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