Posts in Recommendations
Train Your Conscience

"It doesn't do any good to be stricter than God!"

Our study through Romans has brought us to a famous section in chapters 14-15 on how to deal with disagreements between Christians. Some Christians understand that they are free in Christ to do all sorts of things. Some feel bound by their conscience to restrict themselves. This makes for clashes.

For those who want to dive deeper into this issue, the Pastoral Team recommends the book Conscience: What It Is, How To Train It, and Loving Those Who Differ. This book will help you understand what your conscience is, why God has given it to you, and how to relate to other Christians whose consciences are different than yours.

Below is a sampling of some of the best quotes from the book:

"A church that thinks it has gotten beyond last generation’s debates over music and wine will find that this generation’s debates over recycling and child discipline are just as divisive."

"The conscience is your consciousness of what you believe is right and wrong."

"Only the cross can fill that ever-widening gap between your consciousness of what you ought to be and your actual obedience."

"Feeding excuses to your conscience is like feeding sleeping pills to a watchdog."

"A regular diet of Scripture will strengthen a weak conscience or restrain an overactive one."

California Through Artists' Eyes

We make no apologies for our love of California. God has planted us here to make disciples. We love the people of our city and our state.

Grow Your Appreciation for California

The Hilbert Museum of California Art is host to some of the best art pieces representing California history and culture. Everything from surfer culture to citrus groves to Disney. Admission is free and it's walking distance from the Plaza. If you've never been, then make sure to plan a trip. You'll walk away with a greater appreciation for the place we are privileged to call home.

Read Through Romans

We are over halfway through our study in the Book of Romans. It's a long, complicated, and glorious letter. Now may be a good time to re-wrap your heart and mind around it reading the text all by itself.

We have created a PDF copy without the translator headings, verses, and cross-references. Download it and set aside a chunk of time to read it through. Ask the Lord to meet you as you read.

You can also find more study resources here, here, and here.



Listen To Our Spotify Playlist

God Loves Music and So Do We

God is a singing God and His people are singing people. Fortunately, we live in a day and age where there are many talented musicians publishing theologically-rich, God-glorifying songs.

We have pulled some of them together into a Spotify playlist for you to enjoy. Included are a mix of songs we sing on Sundays and other songs we appreciate.

Listen to our curated Spotify playlist.

What's So Great About The Reformation?

October 31, 2017 marks the 500th anniversary of the birth of the Protestant Reformation -- the day Martin Luther nailed his 95 Theses to the door of the castle in Wittenberg, Germany. By doing so he unintentionally sparked a massive change in Christendom. 

But why should that matter to you?

Does the Reformation have any bearing on our lives today? Definitely. What happened 500 years ago profoundly shapes how we read our Bibles and how we worship God in our church.

If you want a quick way to dig into the Reformation, utilize the resources listed below.

Why Did the Reformers Conclude that Reform Was Urgently Needed?
An article by Ligonier on the necessity of the Reformation

5 Questions and the 5 Solas
An article summarizing the historical context of the Reformation and the content of the 5 Solas

Here We Stand
31 short articles on important men and women in the Reformation

5 Minutes in Church History
A professor walks through the life of Martin Luther in bite-sized podcasts for the entire month of October


Grow With Your Pastors

Earlier this month your pastors attended our denomination's annual pastors conference. The Lord works wonderfully at this event each year and now you can get in on it.

All of the messages from the conference are online.

We encourage you to listen in.

If you are looking for recommendations, check these out:

A Heart for the Church (H.B. Charles Jr.)

Power from on High (Jared Mellinger)

The Invincible Church (Jeff Purswell)


Book Recommendations For Romans

Is God Anti-Gay? by Sam Allbery. It's the hot topic of the moment. Christians, the church and the Bible seem to be out of step with modern attitudes towards homosexuality. And there is growing hostility towards those who hold a different view. So is God homophobic? And what do we say, and how do we relate to to both Christians and non Christians who experience same-sex attraction. 

The Difficult Doctrine of the Love of God by D.A. Carson. The only aspect of God's character the world still believes in is His love. His holiness, His sovereignty, His wrath are often rejected as being incompatible with a "loving" God.