Charles Spurgeon Bobblehead with the Apostle PaulAnnouncing a new title from Cross-Points Books: Lessons from the Apostle Paul’s Prayers by Charles Spurgeon.

Why study and pray the prayers of the Apostle Paul? One word: transformation. Of the many benefits we have in learning from Paul, a few stand out:

We see how the Holy Spirit wants us to pray.

Scripture provides a wealth of prayers inspired by the Holy Spirit, each of them giving a glimpse into the unsearchable wisdom of Almighty God. These prayers should shape our priorities and our entire outlook on life.

So often, we pray such small, self-centered prayers instead of asking how God would have us pray. As we read and pray Paul’s prayers, God will work His purposes in us as we contemplate what Paul prayed for and why. Paul prayed for the eyes of Ephesian hearts enlightened (Ephesians 1:18) and rejoiced in the rich fellowship he had with the Thessalonian church (1 Thessalonians 3:9–13). When was the last time you prayed for either of those things?

Spurgeon illustrates why we want to pray according to God’s priorities: “A man might try to fill us and fail, but God, who made us, knows every corner and cranny of our nature, and can pour in joy and peace till every portion of our being is flooded, saturated, and overflowed with delight.”

We can pray along with Paul confident of God’s answers.

Praying God’s prayers according to God’s priorities means we can be sure of God’s answers. This doesn’t mean He will answer as we expect, but it does mean God will answer prayers according to His will as He promises (1 John 5:14). Since Scripture is His revealed will, praying Paul’s prayers guarantee God’s answers.

Spurgeon Paul Prayers 2Let this sink into your soul. As you earnestly pray for God to strengthen your faith to grasp the depths and riches of Christ’s love (Ephesians 3:14–19), God will answer you—He wants you to experience the profundity of Christ’s love.

“Expect great things, expect things beyond all expectation,” Spurgeon writes. “Your largest hopes shall all be exceeded. Hope, and hope, and yet hope again, and each time hope more and more, but the Lord will give you more than you have hoped for.”

Our minds will be enlightened and affections stirred.

As we contemplate the prayers and petitions of the great apostle, God’s Spirit will illuminate the prayers and shape the desires of our heart. Instead of merely praying for circumstances and our to-dos, our hearts will pray for things like the filling of our minds with “the knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God…” (Colossians 1:9–10). As we pray prayers like this and see God answer us, our hearts will be drawn into deeper delight and communion with our Father.

As you pick up Lessons from the Apostle Paul’s Prayers, let the Holy Spirit mentor you in prayer as you enter into Paul’s prayer closet. This isn’t a comprehensive study on Paul’s prayers, but rather eight sermons working through rich nuggets from Paul’s prayers. Don’t read this book to finish; read to change. Note helpful verses and quotes and incorporate them into your daily prayer routine. Put down the book and get on your knees. Cry out to God in worship, dependence, and intercession. He will hear you and He will answer.

The prayer of Paul in Philippians 1:9–11 is our prayer for this volume:

“And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.”

Buy Lessons from the Apostle Paul’s Prayers on Kindle or paperback.

The Editors at Cross-Points Books
Schaumburg, IL
January 2018

Learn more about the book series Rich Theology Made Accessible.

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Be Wise (1 Corinthians): Discern the Difference Between Man’s Knowledge and God’s Wisdom

Free Warren Wiersbe Commentary - 1 CorinthiansThe early church in Corinth was falling apart. Sin was rampant, divisions were growing, and the congregation was living no differently than the world around them. What had corrupted this once vibrant church? The apostle Paul immediately understood the symptoms: The people had traded God’s perfect wisdom for faulty human knowledge.

Part of Dr. Warren W. Wiersbe’s best-selling “BE” commentary series, Be Wise has now been updated with study questions and a new introduction by Ken Baugh. A respected pastor and Bible teacher, Dr. Wiersbe shares a wealth of insights on living wisely.

Download the book here.

Browse other deals on Wiersbe’s BE Series.

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If you received this link by email, please accept our apology for a tech glitch. This deal expired March 17th.

Paul CopanFree until March 17, 2018.

That’s Just Your Interpretation: Responding to Skeptics Who Challenge Your Faith Kindle Edition
by Paul Copan (Author)

In our relativistic society, Christians more than ever are bombarded by tough questions about their faith. Author Paul Copan has observed that many of these questions emerge as “anti-truth claims” that are part of today’s skeptical mind-set.

Christians defending their faith often hear slogans and questions such as:
Ž It’s all relative
Ž Everything is one with the Divine; all else is illusion
Ž The Gospels contradict each other
Ž Why would a good God create hell?

This book provides incisive answers to slogans related to truth and reality; theism, pantheism/Eastern religion, and naturalism; and doctrinal issues such as the incarnation and truth of Scripture. Each of the twenty-two chapters provides succinct answers and summary points for countering the arguments.

Copan’s book is accessible for all Christians who want to defend the plausibility of Christianity in the marketplace of ideas. It also includes helpful summary sections, additional resources, and additional documentation in the endnotes for review and discussion.

Download the Kindle book.

Also free for a limited time: Calvin on the Christian Life by Michael Horton

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Hard-Earned Conviction

John Calvin, a man adored by some and maligned by others, stands as a legendary figure in Christian history.

In Calvin on the Christian Life: Glorifying and Enjoying God Forever, author Michael Horton writes that Calvin “arrived at his convictions not out of ivory-tower speculation or monastic contemplation, but out of constant crises, tests, disappointing setbacks, and personal suffering.”

Deepen your understanding of Calvin’s theology and ministry, and explore the heart of his spiritual life: a confident trust and unwavering joy in the sovereign grace of God.

Download the Free Ebook

Fill out a brief survey to download a free digital copy of Calvin on the Christian Life: Glorifying and Enjoying God Forever today.


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Calvin Prayer CoverRelated Book: The Chief Exercise of Faith: John Calvin on Prayer

“There’s nothing else like Calvin’s treatment of prayer… Calvin is both theological and practical, and as usual, he is very comprehensive. This is a rarity—deep theology with a spiritually elevated tone and savor that makes the reader want to pray.” —Timothy Keller

A History of Western Philosophy and Theology John FrameReformed Theological Seminary has released free audio on iTunesU of John Frame’s course Legacy: History of Philosophy and Christian Thought.

This course covers the same material as his book A History of Western Philosophy and Theology which is available on Amazon (Hardcover and Kindle) as well as the Westminster Theological Seminary Bookstore. Read a description of the book:

A History of Western Philosophy and Theology is the fruit of John Frame’s forty- five years of teaching philosophical subjects. No other survey of the history of Western thought offers the same invigorating blend of expositional clarity, critical insight, and biblical wisdom. The supplemental study questions, bibliographies, links to audio lectures, quotes from influential thinkers, twenty appendices, and indexed glossary make this an excellent main textbook choice for seminary- and college-level courses and for personal study.

Related: 19 Free eBooks from John Frame and Vern Poythress (PDF)

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Word Biblical Commentary SeriesZondervan is offering Kindle deals on the Word Biblical Commentary series until March 4, 2018. Most titles are $8.99 for Kindle. Browse titles here. ranks many of the titles as top commentaries:

  • Genesis by Gordon Wenham
  • 1-2 Chronicles by Raymond Dillard
  • Ezra/Nehemiah by W.G.M. Williamson
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  • Psalms 1-50 by Peter C. Craigie
  • Lamentations by Duane A Garrett
  • Daniel by John Goldingay
  • Hosea–Jonah by Douglas Stuart
  • Galatians by Richard Longenecker
  • Colossians, Philemon by Peter T. O’Brien
  • Pastoral Epistles by William D. Mounce
  • Hebrews by William Lane
  • 2 Peter/Jude by Richard Bauckham

View the Kindle deals here.

Tim Keller - Favorite Christian Biographies

In The Gospel Coalition’s article On My Shelf: Life and Books with Tim Keller, the influential pastor shared the 15 Christian biographies that have most shaped his life and ministry:

15 Christian Biographies that Have Influenced @TimKellerNYC Click To Tweet

Favorite posts we recommend:

10 Christian Books about Overcoming Anxiety and Worry

Here are ten Christian books about overcoming anxiety and worry that the Cross-Points team recommends.

1. Gospel Hope for Anxious Hearts: Trading Fear and Worry for the Peace of God by Charles Spurgeon

 “The man who is full of care, is ripe for any sin, but he who has cast his care on God stands securely, neither shall the evil one be able to touch him!” —Charles Spurgeon

Is true peace possible in our anxious world?

From his time until the present day, Charles Spurgeon’s sermons have captured the hearts and imaginations of listeners and readers alike. Drawing from this rich tradition, Gospel Hope for Anxious Hearts leads readers from fear and worry to the peace of God that passes all understanding in Christ Jesus. Readers will be challenged and empowered for overcoming anxiety through the healing balm of the gospel. Read 40 quotes from Gospel Hope from Anxious Hearts.

2-3. Anxious for Nothing: God’s Cure for the Cares of Your Soul and Found: God’s Peace: Experience True Freedom from Anxiety in Every Circumstance by John MacArthur

Anxious for Nothing Description: Stress has become part of our daily lives. We worry about our jobs, our relationships, and our families. And while there’s no lack of remedies for anxiety, no solution seems to offer true peace of mind.

John MacArthur, Jr. believes that peace is not only possible, it’s a divine mandate. Drawing from a rich legacy of teaching and ministry, MacArthur puts aside cultural cures to uncover the source of our anxiety and stress. Based on solid Biblical insights, Anxious for Nothing shares how we can overcome uncertainty, defeat doubt, and be truly worry-free.

In Found: God’s Peace, trusted pastor and teacher John MacArthur tackles this vital question head-on. Throughout the book, MacArthur shares principles to help you overcome uncertainty, defeat worry, and experience true freedom from anxiety.

As Pastor John MacArthur writes, the key to worry-free living is to replace worry with prayer, right thinking, and action. Here he draws on rich biblical truths to show us how.

4-5. Running Scared: Fear, Worry, and the Rest of God and When I Am Afraid: A Step-by-Step Guide Away from Fear and Anxiety by Ed Welch

In Running Scared, Edward T. Welch investigates the roots of fear in the human soul and the ramifications of living in the grips of anxiety, worry, and dread. Welch encourages readers to discover for themselves that the Bible is full of beautiful words of comfort for fearful people (and that every single person is afraid of something). Within the framework of thirty topical meditations, Welch offers sound biblical theology and moment-by-moment, thoughtful encouragement for life-saving rescue in the midst of the heart and mind battlefield of rampant panic-stricken responses. This comprehensive primer on the topic of fear, worry, and the rest of God will have readers retreating to scripture for invariable constancy, stalwart care, and robust comfort, instead of as Welch terms it hitting the default switch by responding with characteristic human independence, control, and self-protectiveness.

If you are tired of dealing with anxiety and worry on your own, then CCEFs When I Am Afraid: A Step-by-Step Guide Away from Fear and Anxiety is for you. As you go through each set of meditations by biblical counseling expert Edward T. Welch, anxiety will gradually yield to hope, peace, and rest. Of course, this is a lifelong process, but going through this devotional guide, either on your own or with a small group, will kick-start the process and bring lifelong change.

6. Overcoming Fear, Worry, and Anxiety by Elyse Fitzpatrick

Elyse Fitzpatrick, coauthor of Women Helping Women (a GoldMedallion 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–lifeexamples of how others, including Elyse, cast their cares upon God and experience His strength and love.

7. Stressed Out A Practical, Biblical Approach to Anxiety by Todd Friel

You are definitely not the only person on the planet to wrestle with anxious feelings. Billions upon billions of people battle garden-variety stress and anxiety every day. Everyone, to varying degrees, worries.

Jesus Christ is a sympathetic high priest who understands us, and He knows we are prone to worry. He is so thoughtful and kind that His last sermon to the disciples (and us) was dedicated to the subject of anxiety.

Prepare to discover 12 anxiety relievers from Jesus Christ that will get to the root of your anxiety problem and give you the tools you need to replace your anxious thoughts with profound, settled, hopeful joy. Stressed Out: A Practical, Biblical Approach to Anxiety isn’t like most Christian self-help books that promise to fix your “stinkin’ thinkin.’ ”

8. Mindscape: What to Think About Instead of Worrying by Timothy Z. Witmer

Mindscape builds a practical action plan for changing your mental landscape—and your life—based on Paul’s rich exhortation in Philippians 4:8. Author Tim Witmer draws from thirty years of experience in helping worried people apply Scripture to their lives to present a clear, biblical, and deeply pastoral guide to replacing worry with a new way of thinking.

Mindscape is not a self-help book or an academic tome on behavioral theory. It is a real-world guide to the transformation that Jesus works in us as we go to him in faith and ask for his power to change, to listen, and to think differently.

Chapter-by-chapter application questions make Mindscape perfect for personal reflection or small group use.

9. How to Overcome Worry: Experiencing the Peace of God in Every Situation
by Winfred Neely

Do you struggle with worry or anxious thoughts on a regular basis? Does your mind get fixated on the same concern over and over? Do you know you should stop worrying but repeatedly fail to do so?

How to Overcome Worry presents a biblical and practical strategy for this exact problem. Dr. Winfred Neely, who has experienced his fair share of anxiety-inducing circumstances, walks you through Philippians 4:6–7 to help you:

  • Understand the difference between concern and worry
  • Use prayer as a means of grace to overcome worry
  • Cultivate gratitude and thanksgiving as an antidote to worry
  • Navigate changing seasons and circumstances without falling into worry
  • Employ practical strategies for experiencing the peace of God

Worry is one of the top issues in our world today, even among Christians, and this concise and biblical approach will offer real solutions. In His Word, God tells us to stop worrying, pray about everything, and expect His peace. This is a true promise of Scripture, and this book will help you to lay hold of it.

10. The Anxious Christian: Can God Use Your Anxiety for Good? by Rhett Smith

Is anxiety “un-Christian”?

Many Christians believe the answer to this question is yes! Understandably, then, many Christians feel shame when they are anxious. They especially feel this shame when well-intentioned fellow believers dismiss or devalue anxiety with Christian platitudes and Bible verses.

Rhett Smith, Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, helps us understand anxiety in a new way. Rhett argues that, rather than being destructive or shameful, anxiety can be a catalyst for our spiritual growth. Using Biblical thinking and personal examples, Rhett explains how anxiety allows us to face our resistance and fears, understand where those fears come from, and then make intentional decisions about issues such as career, marriage, money, and our spiritual lives.

Allow this book to challenge your view of anxiety, and allow God to use your anxiety for good.

BONUS: Battling Unbelief: Defeating Sin with Superior Pleasure by John Piper

Pastor John Piper shows how to sever the clinging roots of sin that ensnare us, including anxiety, pride, shame, impatience, covetousness, bitterness, despondency, and lust in Battling Unbelief.

When faith flickers, stoke the fire.

No one sins out of duty. We sin because it offers some promise of happiness. That promise enslaves us, until we believe that God is more desirable than life itself (Psalm 63:3). Only the power of God’s superior promises in the gospel can emancipate our hearts from servitude to the shallow promises and fleeting pleasures of sin.

Delighting in the bounty of God’s glorious gospel promises will free us for a less sin-encumbered life, to the glory of Christ. Rooted in solid biblical reflection, this book aims to help guide you through the battles to the joys of victory by the power of the gospel and its superior pleasure.