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2020's Top 10 articles

It's not surprising that three of 2020's top articles addressed the coronavirus and governments' responses to it. But, in a blast from the past, C.S. Lewis also takes up a couple of spots. Other than that, the year's most popular articles are as different as different could be, united only in recognizing that God is working through it all. Without further adieu, here are Reformed Perspective's top articles for 2020, starting at…. #10 - The hidden meaning of "The Chronicles of Narnia" It's been recently discovered that C.S. Lewis, seemingly just for his own private entertainment, linked each of his famous Narnia books to one of the 7 planets as medieval cosmology understood them. #9 - Netflix’s “The Baby-Sitters Club” sells transgenderism to its preteen/teen audience The streaming giant brought a much-loved pre-teen/teen girls' book series to the small screen but "updated" it with transgenderism. #8 - The Regulative Principle and church lockdowns Is live-streaming the equivalent of in-person worship of God? What does the Regulative Principle tell us about that? And if it is not the equivalent, how should that impact our interactions with our elected leaders, and the message we would want to communicate to them? #7 - C.S. Lewis's Apologetics: a Reformed assessment C.S. Lewis's second entry on our Top 10, this time we're examining his approach to apologetics from a Reformed and presuppositional perspective. #6 - 3 ways of confronting the problems of diminishing attention spans through the reading of the Great Books Like even this article title, the Great Books stretch us. If you want to give reading "the Great Books" a try, this article includes a listing of 50 of them to choose from (with links to download a half dozen for free). #5 - Solomon on smartphones and the pull of pornography King Solomon didn't know smartphones but had insights into the power and pull of sexual temptation, which he shares with young men in Proverbs 7. Older men, and young and older women, can also benefit from the wisdom shared here. #4 - Twice a Sunday needs to happen Chris deBoer encourages a more creative approach to getting people back in the pews and singing God's praises together: if the government restricts church attendance to 50%, then let's double our services! Or let's come out with some other, similarly creative, way to come together again, twice each Sunday. #3 - TikTok passes 2 billion downloads A social media platform that was already big in 2019 became enormous in 2020... and parents who wanted the basics were checking out this primer. #2 - Calvinism in the time of coronavirus Written at the beginning of the Coronavirus crisis, it reminded us that we can be comforted knowing that, no matter what craziness might be going on out in the world, our Lord remains in control! #1 - A great-grandma 100 times over...and counting Our top article of 2020 is a short but sweet story about God's abundant blessings – 100 times over! – to this grand great-grandma....


The Top 10 articles of 2019

It's said that the Internet is causing people to have shorter attention spans. If that's true, you can't look to our most popular articles of 2019 for proof, as many are among the longer articles we published. You'll quickly notice there are 11 articles on this "Top 10" list, and we want to assure you that's not a matter of bad math, but interesting statistics. The difference between 10 and 11 is so close, that they are repeatedly swapping spots. So, rather than have to update the list as they swap spots yet again, we're including both, as 10a and 10b. Now, what got thousands of folks reading each of these articles? Maybe it was the diversity. One of the fun things about a magazine that writes about all that God is up to is that we get to tackle all that God is up to! Without further ado, here is our Top 10 countdown for 2019. 10b. Original Sin: Luther's other life-changing doctrine (15 minutes) Harma-Mae Smit contributed an article that takes some effort but amply rewards it. We know Luther for his rediscovery of the Doctrine of Justification - that it is not by our works, but by faith in Jesus that we are justified. But Luther's understanding of our sinfulness was every bit as important. 10a. Countering Tim Keller's case for evolution (15 min) Keller is a much-respected writer because when he gets it right – when he treats God's Word as authoritative – he gets it really right. But when he gets it wrong, as he does in his treatment of the opening chapters of the Genesis, he gets it really and horribly wrong. 9. A sad tale of a wealthy millennial's moral confusion (8 min) E. Calvin Beisner read about a young man who was wealthy and felt guilty about it. Should we feel guilty when we are blessed? Or should we feel gratitude? A series of accompanying questions make this a great one for discussions on socialism, the 10th Commandment, social justice and more. 8. Porn addiction isn't just a guy thing (8 min) This article got no attention when it was first posted a year or two ago. But when it was reposted this year, thousands checked it out. Why? Maybe it's because we now recognize that even as pornography-use remains the sin that Christian men don't own up to, it is that much the harder for Christian women to look for and get help in this battle. 7. Reformed Harmony: a new tool promotes friendship...and sometimes marriage (10 min) Sharon Bratcher tells RP readers about this online forum created specifically for Reformed singles. What a great idea! 6. Public doubt: Josh Harris abandons God, and Hillsong's Marty Sampson struggles (5 min) It was big news when Josh Harris turned his back on God, and was almost as big when a prominent Christian musician went public with his doubts. So what's a Christian to do when they have doubts? 5. Should introverts be expected to act like Extroverts? (5 min) It takes all kinds to make up the Body of Christ. But we are the same Body, and that means that some type of togetherness is a must. 4. #chairchallenge highlights male/female divide (2 min) The chair challenge is a fun craze circulating the Internet which most women can do, and most men can't. It's fun, but it's also significant, living as we do in an age that denies there are two genders and that even if there are, denies they are different. 3. That morning I listened to Kanye West (8 min) In December 2018 Kanye West was featured on a song with XXXTentacion singing vulgar lyrics. Less than a year later he released his album Jesus is King and Rev. Wes Bredenhof had a listen...and liked what he heard. 2. Charles Darwin's grave mistake (12 min) On the 137th anniversary of Darwin's death, Christine Farenhorst shared how the Christian world honored him. 1. Cremation: why and why not? (8 min) In the past cremation has been done as an act of rebellion. But is that what it has to symbolize? Or might this be an area of Christian liberty?...


Top 10 articles of 2018

The top ten posts of 2018 show that Reformed folk have had wide-ranging interests this past year... #10. Movie Review: “I survived ‘I Kissed Dating Goodbye’” I Kissed Dating Goodbye was huge in Christian circles, selling more than a million copies. This year a documentarian, along with the author himself, critiqued the impact the book has had over the last two decades. It's a very good documentary, if an overly critical one, and if you read to the bottom of the review there's a link there to where you can watch it for free. #9. Why do we suffer? Buddhism vs. Christianity The readership for this article keeps growing. It didn't make it to the Top 10 back in 2017 when it was first published, but every month hundreds more would track it down, giving it a place on the list in 2018. #8. Is recreational marijuana sinful? This is another 2017 article. It returned to the Top 10 when Canada legalized marijuana and this question became a pressing one for the Church. #7. War through the eyes of a child: Alice Kuik shares her memories of World War II Little Alice didn’t know her parents were hiding Jews in their home. But she did understand the Nazis were watching their whole family. #6. When we have to parent our parents Sharon Bratcher offers some help and encouragement for caregivers. #5. What’s next? The growth of Statism in Canada ARPA Canada’s André Schutten on the government requiring citizens to comply with its State ideology. #4. Should we baptize our infants? Resources that make the case On the evening of Sept. 27, 2018, two Reformed pastors debated "Should we baptize infants as well as adults?" Reformed Perspective holds to a paedobaptism position, and in preparation for the debate, we shared a list of some of the very best resources available in defense of infant baptism. #3. Ronald Reagan's challenge to his dying atheist father-in-law Thirty-six years after Reagan wrote this private letter to his father-in-law, God used it to challenge hundreds of thousands of others. #2. Chick-fil-A is always closed on Sunday...except when an ox falls in a pit This was an encouraging story about how a restaurant chain in the US recognizes that the Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath (Mark 2:27). **** And the number one post of 2018 was... #1. Is Jordan Peterson the champion we've been looking for? Jordan Peterson was all over the Internet in 2018, and in many of the interviews and appearances, he sounded quite like a Christian, talking with respect about Jesus, or speaking of "the Word become divine." He also emphasized personal responsibility, telling his 20-something-year-old followers that if they really want to change the world, it starts with self-discipline – you can't refashion society if you can't even manage to put your socks in the laundry. It was old-fashioned common sense that's becoming increasingly uncommon outside of the Church. To top it off, he'd continue talking, even when he was getting attacked for what he believed. His courage was admirable and unusual, and it made many in his audience hope all the more that he was Christian – here, finally, was someone displaying the courage of a David before Goliath, or a Daniel in the lions' den. But as Joel McDurmon explains in his article, Peterson isn't a Christian at all. The reason he sounds like one is because he is a Jungian and he believes that the world's myths tell us something important about Man. In his view, the tales of Thor, the 12 labors of Hercules, the voyage of Odysseus, and yes, also the life of Jesus, have stayed with us because they all capture something important about who we are. Peterson respects the Bible more than other myths, because of its greater impact on the world. But he doesn't believe it to be God's very words. Peterson doesn't believe that Jesus died for his sins; despite how he often sounds, he is not Christian. And instead of pointing people to Christ, he is telling them to pull themselves up by their own bootstraps....


Top 10 RP articles of 2017

At year's end it seemed a good opportunity to review the top articles of 2017. This past year we changed from being a subscription-based print magazine to being a donor-supported multi-media enterprise, and we've seen God bless this transition in many ways, including increasing our reach and impact. Of the more than 300 articles we've published in 2017, these Top 10 11 (a late entry, published after this list was released, slipped in to the #3 spot, so for the sake of simplicity this is now a "Top 11 list") were read by anywhere from 3,000+ to as many as 15,000...though we're not sure about that last number, because the traffic for our #1 article kind of broke the website, and also the counter. We were forced to move to a faster server that could better handle the large number of visitors -  it was a problem we were happy to face because it meant the article was being noticed. So, here are Reformed Perspective's top articles for 2017, starting at.... #11 - Wikipedia: reader beware and Did Adam have enough time to name all the animals? Ties are a sneaky way to fit just one more into this list, with both of these articles registering roughly 3,900 views. The first is an article by Dr. Wes Bredenhof on how, while Wikipedia can be very useful, there are occasions where it can be not only biased but unfair. Thus there is a need for readers to beware. The second article is a fun and thorough response to an objection sometimes raised that there wasn't enough time on the sixth day for Adam to name all the animals. #10 - Jorge’s Heresy Christine Farenhorst relates how the pope has elevated Mary and in so doing diminished the need for salvation through Jesus Christ alone. #9 - Sales as a noble calling Rene Vermuelen was a columnist in RP for more than 25 years, and in this blast from the past he relates how the calling of salesman - sometimes looked down upon - is an area where Christians can let their light shine. #8 - Call me Billy This satirical poem mourns what our society is doing in affirming those who say that their "feelings" can remake reality. #7 - Princeton scientists announce discovery of “sex chromosome” Another satirical take, this time asking how or culture would react if sex chromosomes - XX and XY - had only just been discovered today. Would there be pressure to deny this reality? Of course there would be! #6 - Here’s the problem with just closing your eyes during the sex scenes We know R-rated sexual content is problematic. But sometimes we watch it anyway. This article encouraged readers to consider the psychological and spiritual harm done to the actors themselves when they perform sex scenes. If the harm we're doing to ourselves isn't enough to stop us from watching these sorts of films, then maybe the harm being done to the actors will shake our consciences. #5 - Overpopulation is a myth and we should have known it The overpopulation myth is one that has killed millions - it's why China implemented their one-child policy, and around the world it has had a hand in popularizing abortion. And while this myth is starting to be torn down it does still keeps reappearing in popular media – this lie has staying power. But it's also a lie that Christians should never have fallen for. Those who pushed it viewed children as a curse, seeing a baby as just another mouth to feed, which stands in stark contrast to how God speaks of children as a blessing. Each child is a mouth to feed, yes, but God has also given us hands to work, and brains in which to create - we consume, but God has so made us that we can produce even more than we consume. While Christians should have known better than to believe the overpopulation lie, instead our witness was compromised because too many doubted the Scriptures, and believed the skeptics. This is a mistake we can learn from. #4 - Is Recreational Marijuana sinful? More than 5,000 took in this article which offers up four Scriptural reasons to abstain from smoking recreational marijuana. With legalization just around the corner in Canada, the hope is that this article can serve as a conversation starter for parents and their teenage and older children. #3 - Heaven-bound: What will it be like? We all have questions about what comes next and they can be important to ask. #2 - 21 Things I learned living with teenagers Sarah Vanderguten shares the joy and troubles that come with parenting teens. It's a fun piece that will get any parent, and many a teenager, laughing. #1 – Investigating the Birth Control Pill And the number one article this year is about the birth control pill and how it has an abortive action that many Christians have never heard of. This is an article to pass on to friends and family because this is information that, on the one hand, is almost unknown, and on the other, is literally a matter of life and death....