Mark Talbot, a professor of philosophy at Wheaton College in IL, USA, addresses some of life’s deepest issues from a biblically informed Christian perspective.
After I was paralyzed...
Mark tells the story of his paralyzing accident, his sense of God's love that immediately followed it, and its subsequent blessings in his life.
Should Christians expect to suffer in this life?
While we should expect to suffer in this life, we can find hope in the fact that God will always bring good out of our suffering.
The psalmists provide us with breathing lessons for exhaling our pain and grief to God and then inhaling his promises as well as remembering what he has done for us in the past.
Great suffering and deliverance with three Old Testament saints
The stories of Naomi and Job show us that while suffering can make us think that life will never again be good, God may restore us. And even if, as with Jeremiah, God doesn’t restore us in this life, he can help us to persevere. No matter what we understand, God is always working in and through every circumstance.
Living in the light of our Lord’s resurrection
After Mark offers some advice on the sort of help we need to understand Scripture, John and Mark address the question: Given the suffering in our world, how should we live in order to shine a light on the truth of the Christian story?
Tell me the story again!
Mark and John wrap up their discussion of When the Stars Disappear, Mark's first volume in his Suffering and the Christian Life series, by reflecting on what the Christian story offers us and then recounting its four parts. Mark summarizes the purpose of his first volume as clarifying that, no matter how deep anyone's suffering is, Scripture records instances of suffering that are at least as deep, which is a sign for Christians that God is always with them and will walk with them through even the worst of times.
A Light in the Darkness
Over the years, I have invested much time and concerted effort searching, reading, and applying myself in order to understand the reasons for the pain and suffering I endured in my formative years. In my most recent iteration of this search I landed at the conclusion that in my creaturely finite-ness there will always be unresolved questions and a deep sense that there is something more (than what meets my eye). Then I discovered Dr Talbot's podcast which has helped me to break down anew and reshape my understanding of this problem of pain -- allowing me to unearth some of my faulty theology and presumptions about what constitutes the good life. Having listened to the podcasts I recognize now that the settled happiness and security that I long for can point me to and reflect a greater reality than my present one, creating a deeper communion and dependence on God. These longings will one day be fulfilled but for the moment, adopting, as C.S. Lewis put it, an attitude of "cheerful insecurity" may be just the ticket. I am grateful for this podcast and usually listen to each of the episodes several times. I expectantly await each new episode. Thank you, Dr Talbot.
Since reading Mark Noll’s popular book on Church history “Turning Points,” I have begun to apply the concept of examining history through critical turning points not only to broader history but also to my own life. Without a doubt, one of the critical turning points in my life was taking Philosophy 101 with Dr. Talbot at Wheaton College.
In a culture where it feels like we’re always in rush, Dr. Talbot presents a more methodical, careful approach to life. Instead of focusing on the volume of things I could read, I shifted to focusing on the quality of the material and how well I could actually understand it. It seems like a change that should have been obvious, but the pressure to consume (even good things) seems to be relentless in this day and age.
I am grateful to have had the privilege of being a student of Dr. Talbot’s, and I am thrilled that this resource is available to the public. Dr. Talbot combines a high level of academic scholarship with genuine pastoral care. This rare trait of his is evident in this podcast, and I cannot recommend this resource highly enough.
Life Changing Material
This material got me through the hardest season of my life. Dr. Talbot is gifted and anointed in bringing serious issues and concerns about suffering in the Christian faith to the light. His teachings completely changed the way that I thought about what God was bringing me through and gave me the strength to carry on to wait for the beautiful fruit that has come since.