My interview with the author of Spurgeon’s Sorrows:
I’ve had three separate trips to the Northeast over the past three years and very glad I avoided this!
Two brothers were well known all about town for being as crooked in their business dealings as they could possibly be, that notwithstanding, they continued to progress from wealth to greater wealth until suddenly one of the brothers died. The surviving brother found himself in search of a minister who would be willing to preach the funeral for his crook of a brother. He finally made an offer to a minister that was hard for the pastor to refuse. “I will pay you a great sum,” he said, “if you will just do me one favor. In eulogizing my brother, I want you to call him a ‘saint,’ and if you do, I will give you a handsome reward.”
The minister, a bit of a shrewd pragmatist, agreed to comply. Why not? The money could help put a new roof on the church.
When the funeral service began, the sanctuary was filled by all the important business associates who’d been swindled through the years by these two brothers. Unaware of the deal that had been made for the eulogy they were expecting to be vindicated by the public exposure of the evil man’s character. At last the much-awaited moment arrived, and the minister spoke. “The man you see in the coffin was a vile and debauched individual. He was a liar, a thief, a deceiver, a manipulator, a reprobate, and a hedonist. He destroyed the fortunes, careers, and lives of countless people in this city, some of whom are here today. This man did every dirty, rotten, unconscionable thing you can think of. But compared to his brother here, he was a saint.”
HT: Doreen Moore
Spurgeon read The Pilgrim’s Progress one hundred times, but how about this?:
HT: Alan Jacobs
That title may cause you to pause a bit, but it shouldn’t.
I should say I am well aware that my schedule allows me to listen to many things most don’t have time for. Then again, you might find that things like the treadmill allow you to double up a bit on things. In any case, I really try to offer here the best of the best.
Well, maybe not quite, but Dostoevsky was on to something!
I was talking with a friend the other about the misguided tendency of Christian conferences to have seminars on all kinds of cutting-edge issues coming from the culture. Don’t get me wrong. I think Christians ought to stay abreast of the latest news and be growing in the ability to navigate the various challenges to the gospel.
What struck me is how impractical it is to mainly offer issue-oriented seminars rather than helping people to learn how to think theologically in a way that is truly grounded in Scripture. Too few Christians have taken the time to do this. When we do have the patience over the long haul to learn the Christian faith well it gives us a discernment we can’t find anywhere else.
I read a lot, and I read books on diverse subject matter. However, if I don’t keep meditating, mulling, memorizing, and going deeper in my understanding of God’s Word my discernment in properly engaging culture will be impaired.