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You know how you feel when sifting through old memorabilia or clothing? These photos and ticket stubs and trophies and T-shirts stir up cherished memories of past conquests and hopeful dreams. You give thanks to God for answered prayers, wonder why you ever thought some things were so important, and remember those moments that shaped everything else to follow. 

That’s a little like sifting through more than 1,100 resources planned, produced, and published by our editorial staff in 2016. Articles I had nearly forgotten hit me in fresh ways in light of new ministry scenarios. Videos we recorded months ago drew out surprising emotions as if I were watching old home movies featuring friends and family. Interviews made me wonder why I pursued certain questions with such assurance of events that did not play out as expected. 

This list reflects my choices as editorial director for our best resources from 2016. It’s not exhaustive, but it reflects our exhausting efforts in this drama-filled year to serve church leaders in shaping their life, doctrine, and teaching. As explained in The Gospel Coalition’s foundation documents, we pray that God would work in and through us “to renew the contemporary church in the ancient gospel of Christ so that we truly speak and live for him in a way that clearly communicates to our age.” In that spirit I hope you’ll read, watch, listen, and share these cherished mementos from the last year.  

Related:


Honest Talk About Marriage

Interview with Matt and Lauren Chandler

Matt and Lauren’s frank discussion about unmet expectations in our most intimate relationship caught me off-guard in this particularly popular podcast.

Love Your Neighbor Enough to Speak Truth

By Rosaria Butterfield

Only Rosaria could have written with so much clarity and gravity about the stakes of this debate: “If I were still in the thick of the battle over the indwelling sin of lesbian desire, Jen [Hatmaker]’s words would have put a millstone around my neck.”

Following Jesus Far from Home

By Mary Willson

Speaking at our National Women’s Conference, Mary offered a model for how to apply the God-inspired words of 1 Peter to our own troubled times.

The Story of Iran’s Church in Two Sentences

By Mark Howard

A conversation with my friend Mark opened a window into one of the most encouraging works of God in our time.

Is Black Lives Matter the New Civil Rights Movement?

By Mika Edmonson

Westminster meets Ferguson in this stirring lecture. Be sure to read Albert Mohler’s response.

N. T. Wright Reconsiders the Meaning of Jesus’s Death

Review by Michael Horton

The most important questions about Jesus’s atoning work on the cross deserve a long review by a world-class theologian.

The Southern City that Lies Forgotten

By Jason Cook

When everyone else has lost hope, the church will be there, and the gospel of Jesus Christ will prevail.

How to Raise an Alien Child

By Jen Wilkin

We can’t teach our kids to fit in. If we want them to follow Jesus, they must learn to stand out.

How Nostalgia Fractured Our Republic

Interview with Yuval Levin

Levin’s book has already popped up on many “best of 2016” lists, and you’ll hear why in this interview. Recorded before the presidential election, it’s only more relevant as we head in 2017. On related matters, listen to Washington University law professor John Inazu make his case for confident pluralism.

What’s a Time in Ministry When in Your Weakness God Demonstrated His Faithfulness?

By Alistair Begg

No matter how famous or popular the pastor, ministry is a story of our weakness and God’s faithfulness. Read others in this moving series and ponder carefully these two related resources:

Turning 40 While Single and Childless

By Bethany Jenkins

The gospel frees us to discuss and ultimately face our greatest fears.

Seasons of Waiting: Walking by Faith when Dreams Are Delayed

By Betsy Childs Howard

Four years ago when I planned a TGC imprint with Crossway for women authors, I hoped we’d be blessed to publish such edifying works.

Following Jesus in an Age of Authenticity

Interview with Russell Moore and Tim Keller

With a basic grasp of these cultural dynamics, you’ll understand the serious discipleship challenges of our age. For a much more in-depth exploration, pick up Keller’s remarkable book Making Sense of God.

How I Learned to Separate Meat from Bone in the Charismatic Tradition

By Jason Cook

The article opens, “God called me to be a pastor while sitting under the preaching ministry of Creflo A. Dollar.” How could you not be hooked? Be sure to read Jeff Robinson’s companion article.

Europe’s Backdoor for Drugs, Sex Trafficking, Jihadism—and the Gospel

By Brian Jose

Learn about how the world’s first self-declared atheist state has become a church planting engine.

You Are Not Your Sexuality

By Sam Allberry

The world needs to hear same-sex attracted Christians share their experiences of God’s goodness.

What I’ve Learned from Being Isolated and Allergic to Everything

By Johanna Watkins

Can anyone but Jesus prepare you to endure such hardship? See more of Johanna’s story in this archived Facebook Live event. On the subject of suffering, I couldn’t edit our review of the new video game That Dragon, Cancer without crying.

Why Grace Is Hard for Me as an Asian American

By Jeremy Yong

The gospel of grace strikes all of us in slightly different ways depending on our particular background and struggles.

Greater Threat to the Church: From the Outside or Inside? 

Interview with Ross Douthat

Tune in for more than an hour of stimulating discussion with The New York Times columnist on the state of the church and culture. Watch to the end for particularly crucial insights on parenting and technology.

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