Classic and contemporary excerpts

HARD ASSIGNMENTS

We do not want suffering; we want success. We identify not with those who are low and hurt but with those who are high and healthy. We don’t like lepers or losers very well; we prefer climbers and comers. For Christians, the temptation to be conformed to this world is desperately sweet and strong.

Yet, says the apostle Paul, we are children of God if we suffer with Christ.… God does not give his hardest assignments to his weakest children.

—Cornelius Plantinga, Jr., in Assurances of the Heart

OUR NEW RELIGION

Western culture has made a fundamental change in its religious base. We have exchanged that One who said, “I am the Truth” (John 14:6) for the incredibly expensive doctrine of Freud and the words of all his varied disciples.

Our new religion says with Pontius Pilate, “What is truth?” and teaches that our status is one of “original victim” rather than “original sin.”

—Carol Tharp in a letter to the Chicago Tribune Magazine (Apr. 17, 1994)

A HUMANIST’S LAMENT

Not long before she died in 1988, in a moment of surprising candour on television, Marghanita Laski, one of our best-known secular humanists and novelists, said: “What I envy most about you Christians is your forgiveness; I have nobody to forgive me.”

—John Stott in The Contemporary Christian

KNOWN BY THE ALMIGHTY

Though you are one of the teeming millions in this world, and though the world would have you believe that you do not count and that you are but a speck in the mass, God says, “I know you.”

D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones in The Best of Martyn Lloyd-Jones

INCOMPREHENSIBLE GIFT

Who can estimate the value of God’s gift, when He gave to the world His only begotten Son? It is something unspeakable and incomprehensible. It passes man’s ...

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