Daily Archives: July 12, 2013

Do Not Be Surprised… This ‘n’ That (12 July 2013)

  • Let’s start with what’s really important: Twinkies are back.
  • Wow, Charles Wesley really had to hate Calvinism to write 15 stanzas about it.
  • I admit, I’m kind of shocked that the book Jesus Calling is still going so strong. But then, I guess people never tire of looking for “more” outside of the Bible. I wrote about this book two years ago (here and here), but Julia over at Steak and a Bible has good article addressing it.
  • Here’s your weekly dose of adorable.
  • This was a close contender for this week’s dose of adorable.
  • Please pray for this family.
  • Okay, tell me how this is news: A woman gets dumped. She orders carry-out, asks the restaurant to write something nice on the container because she was dumped, and then gets all self-esteem-y  and misty-eyed when some restaurant employee—who has never even met her—writes with a Sharpie on Styrofoam, “You’re worth it!” Really? I can’t comment any further because I’m bound to say something mean.
  • Can we “lift up” God’s name?
  • Here it comes, folks. A baker in Colorado could face up to a year in jail for refusing to bake a cake for a gay wedding.
  • Evolutionists are mad because Ball State University hired another professor who believes in Creationism (bringing it to a grand total of two?).
  • “The trouble with all false evangelism is that it does not start with doctrine . . .”
  • Phil Johnson on what true, biblical manliness looks like.
  • The Cripplegate concludes its ‘Why Seminary?’ series.
  • Don’t miss this Kindle deal!
  • The devotional impact of limited atonement.
  • “The Bible’s teaching is that sin is indeed a breaking of relationship with God, but that broken relationship consists in a rejection of his kingly majesty.”
  • Dr. Daniel Wong is a professor at The Master’s College. He and his family experienced firsthand persecution at the hands of the Communist party. Listen to his story and ponder what will happen when (not if) such persecution comes to America:

http://www.donotbesurprised.com/2013/07/this-n-that_12.html

Weekly Apologetics Bonus Links (07/05 – 07/12)

Here are this week’s recommended apologetics links. Enjoy.

Source:

DOMA and the Rock

In 1996, when Bill Clinton signed the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), I grieved with my people. I was an atheist then, and lived in a monogamous lesbian relationship, working as a tenure-track professor specializing in English literature and Queer Theory.

Now, some 17 years later, in the summer of 2013, the Supreme Court has delivered its historic DOMA decision. I am now a Christian, married to a man who serves God as a pastor, and I homeschool in the Classical Christian tradition the two youngest of my four children. And again, I grieve with my people.

Read More: http://www.desiringgod.org/blog/posts/doma-and-the-rock

Where can a Christian go to have his generational curses broken?

A Twisted Crown of Thorns ®

Some people have crept in to Evangelical churches and are stealthily spreading a teaching which has become quite lucrative with its draw strings. They claim that Christians remain cursed until those curses are broken and to have yours broken, you have to part with a hefty sum called “seed money” deposited at the foot of a particular “anointed man”. Furthermore, notes Kato Mivule[ a Ugandan pastor]….

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Usually, those who are deemed cursed are the poor, weak, destitute, unemployed, sick, and those facing various challenges of life.

One of the remedies for “breaking” the curse is to give “seed” money to preachers so as to “break” the curse. The teaching has become very popular given the current global economic malaise, that poor Christians will take the little savings they have and “sow the seed” into the ministries of these predatory preachers.

The popularity of these “breaking the curse” teachings caught…

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Top Ten Reasons Not To Join A Reformed Baptist Church.

A Twisted Crown of Thorns ®

If you are church shopping [this article was first published in OCTOBER 2011] or looking for a local Christian fellowship a Reformed Baptist Church may not be your cup of tea 🙂

Well you see, Dr. James White has (honestly) noted that in a Reformed Baptist Church…

  1. You don’t get to leave after every sermon feeling good about yourself. You may even desire repentance.
  2. You don’t get to hear the sermons in the same way you may be used to. It’s frequently verse by verse, maybe not even relevant to your current situation.
  3. You don’t get to be entertained. We don’t want to entertain you.

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Why Pastors Should Blog

Much of what Christians contribute online, even from pastors, is little more than an ungodly attempt at self-deification in the pseudo-society of social media. I do hope that’s not why I blog – and if it is, the extent of my readership is a fitting parable to the futility of seeking deification in God’s world. Notwithstanding these ever-present pitfalls, I think pastors should blog today to fulfill that ancient function of pastoral ministry, writing.

Read More: http://thecripplegate.com/why-pastors-blog/

What Biblical manliness looks like

Biblical manliness is about authentic character. It’s not about bravado, and it’s not about boyishness. Going out into the woods with a bunch of other men, putting on war paint, making animal noises, telling scary stories around a campfire, and then working up a good cry might be good, visceral fun and all, but that has nothing to do with the biblical idea of manliness.

Read More:

http://teampyro.blogspot.com/2013/07/what-biblical-manliness-looks-like.html

The Twin Temptations of Pragmatism and Authoritarianism

By Jonathan Leeman | 7.12.2013 Print

It is easy for church leaders to look only to their left or only to their right in seeking to avoid the errors of others. Something I have learned from watching Tim Keller is the importance of looking in both directions. Hence, the man always seems to have a “third way” on offer.

When the topic turns to philosophy of ministry or church practice, it has been the tendency of 9Marks writers like myself to look leftward toward the squishy tendencies of mainstream evangelicalism. This is a response to the evangelicalism of my youth that was constantly anxious to avoid slipping too far rightward toward some type of authoritarian fundamentalism.

Many things in life are binary, and there is no third way. But I do believe there are errors both to the right and to the left of a biblical philosophy of ministry. On the left are the errors of pragmatism, and on the right are the errors of authoritarianism. What’s most striking to me is what they share in common.

Read More:

http://www.9marks.org/blog/twin-temptations-pragmatism-and-authoritarianism

Ministry Means War: 10 Lessons Seminary Never Taught Me

During the unholy morning hours of June 6, 1944, U.S. Army paratroopers jumped from their airplanes into the occupied countryside of northern France, miles inland from the beaches at Normandy. My father was one of those soldiers. As a member of the rough and ready 101st Airborne, my dad had the best combat training available in the free world. He had studied in vivid detail the topographical features of the French countryside. Training had coached him on the deadly perils of anti-aircraft fire; the shock of jumping out of an airplane into the yawning darkness; the proper way to land, roll to avoid injury, gather, and engage the enemy; and how to handle hundreds of other battlefield eventualities. Dad had undergone enough drills on weapons and tactics that he could repeat the steps in his sleep for decades to come.

But June 6 was not a drill; it was war. He was not quite prepared for the relentless ferocity of the German machine guns, the exploding mortar shells, or the omnipresent and deadly Bouncing Betty mines. Basic training had given him wonderful training, but it could not have simulated the sights, sounds, smells, and overall horrors of war. Only one thing could acclimate him to the battlefield: war itself.

Ministry, likewise, is war. And only war can prepare you for the heat of battle. Will you fight, or will you run in the face of the menacing realities of ministry? Only the front lines of Christian ministry called the local church will answer that question for you.

My father’s son attended one of the finest theological seminaries in the world, the theological-ministerial equivalent of Army Ranger or Navy Seals school. They taught his boy great theology. By God’s grace, they lashed his heart and ministry to an inspired, inerrant Bible and centered his eyes on the story of redemption that beats intensely at the Bible’s heart. It was rigorous and wonderful preparation for war. But it was not war.

Two years ago, I left that great theological training camp. In the months since, it has been my privilege to serve as pastor of a wonderful, patient group of godly people in Birmingham, Alabama. Together we are learning the difference between life and ministry in theory and life and ministry in reality. I have learned much, and I have much more to learn. Here are 10 things no theological seminary, no matter how faithful and competent, could have prepared me for in real-world ministry:

Read More:

http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/tgc/2013/07/12/ministry-means-war-10-lessons-seminary-never-taught-me/

The Christian’s Triumph in Christ

Possessing the Treasure

by Mike Ratliff

17 But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed, 18 and having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness.  (Romans 6:17-18 NASB)

I have a nephew, Travis,  who has been battling brain cancer for last several years. He and my daughter are about the same age and used to play together when they were little. They were close. He is married and has two young boys. He is a believer as is his wife, Jennifer. I got an email today from my brother-in-law, Travis’ dad, which stated that the doctors at M.D. Anderson had basically reached the end of what they could do medically for him. What they could do would not prolong his life by much, but most certainly would add a great deal to his suffering…

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Worst, Most Ridiculous ‘Worship Song’ Ever. Ever.

Zwinglius Redivivus

This sort of sacrilegious bile has no place in any service of worship. HT Michael Acidri.

I’m not sure how these people have avoided being expunged from the Church. It speaks volumes that they’re even allowed to ‘perform’ this garbage.

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The SBC’s 60 Year Decline! Beyond the Blame Game

At the most peaceful and drama-free SBC in recent memory, there was one bit of news that had things stirred up – a fresh set of evidence that the SBC’s statistical decline was not just a blip. It is a real problem. We are a shrinking denomination. One seminary professor has described it as a “free-fall.” While that may be hyperbole, it is not wholly inaccurate.

And, of course, as soon as the statistics were published, the blame-game began. It ought to surprise no one that bad news like this is used to point the bony finger of blame within the SBC. We see it all the time in Washington. The Republicans blame the Democrats and Democrats blame the Republicans. It is natural (though in the Bible, natural is not a good thing) to blame “them” for the problems that occur.

– See more at: http://sbcvoices.com/the-sbcs-60-year-decline-beyond-the-blame-game/

Iris Scans Are The New School IDs

Kids lose their school IDs but they don’t often lose their eyeballs. That’s one of the reasons why a growing number of schools are replacing traditional identification cards with iris scanners. By the fall, several schools — ranging from elementary schools to colleges — will be rolling out various iris scanning security methods. …. Click here for full story

Christian Group Petitions Oxygen Media To Cancel ‘Preachers of LA’

A new reality television show about pastors in Los Angeles, scheduled to release this fall, is already stirring up controversy. A preview video published at the end of June shows Ferraris, Bentleys and lavish mansions, along with the pastors defending their wealth. …. Click here for full story

Major Papers Reject Pro-Life Ad – Image Of Baby ‘Too Controversial’

A national pro-life organization is outraged after three major American newspapers rejected a pro-life ad as “too controversial.” “It seems as though it is okay to talk about the issue in general, but when you actually put a face to the discussion, then it becomes controversial,” …. Click here for full story

‘Evolution vs. God’ Movie So Popular It Crashes Evangelical Leader’s Website: ‘It’s Going to Take Down Evolution’

Evangelical leader Ray Comfort is making waves in both Christian and science circles with his new “Evolution vs. God” movie. After releasing the 38-minute short film online on Tuesday, Comfort said that downloads were so rampant that his website crashed ……. Click here for full story

Questions about Angels and Demons: Can a Christian be demon possessed?

The Bible does not explicitly state whether a Christian can be possessed by a demon. However, since a Christian is indwelt by the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:9–11; 1 Corinthians 3:16; 6:19), it would seem unlikely that the Holy Spirit would allow a demon to possess the same person He is indwelling. This is sometimes a controversial issue; however, we strongly hold to the belief that a Christian cannot be possessed by a demon. We believe there is a distinct difference between being possessed by a demon and being oppressed or influenced by a demon. Demon possession involves a demon having direct control over the thoughts and/or actions of a person (Luke 4:33–35; 8:27–33; Matthew 17:14–18). Demon oppression or influence involves a demon or demons attacking a person spiritually and/or encouraging him/her into sinful behavior (1 Peter 5:8–9; James 4:7). Notice that in all the New Testament passages dealing with spiritual warfare, we are never told to cast a demon out of a believer (Ephesians 6:10–18). Believers are told to resist the devil (1 Peter 5:8–9; James 4:7), not to cast him out.

It is unthinkable that God would allow one of His children, whom He purchased with the blood of Christ (1 Peter 1:18–19) and made into a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17), to be possessed and controlled by a demon. Yes, as believers, we wage war with Satan and his demons, but not from within ourselves. The apostle John declares, “You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the One who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world” (1 John 4:4). Who is the One in us? The Holy Spirit. Who is the one in the world? Satan and his demons. Therefore, the believer has overcome the world of demons, and the case for demon possession of a believer cannot be made scripturally.[1]

 


[1] Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

Questions about False Doctrine: Is there any validity to the Zeitgeist movie?

The “zeitgeist movie,” which is available for viewing on the Web—http://www.zeitgeistmovie.com, is essentially a baseless conspiracy theory focused on attacking the Christian faith and the government of the United States. What is interesting, though, is that while nearly all the assertions put forth are in the movie are completely wrong, the end fear promoted by the movie is correct and backed by Scripture (depending on one’s view of biblical eschatology).

The purpose of this article is to address the first conspiracy theory (out of four) put forth in the movie—that Jesus is a mythological amalgamation of various pagan gods and deities invented by the Egyptians and other cultures. Time will not be spent addressing the two major claims that follow in the movie—that the U.S. government architected and planned the attacks that occurred on 9/11 (with assertions being made that a pattern of such domestic attacks exists in history) and that there is a major banking conspiracy attempting to control the finances of all U.S. citizens and ultimately, the world. In the end, a comment will be made concerning the last theory—that a one-world government is coming.

The allegations concerning Jesus in the Zeitgeist movie can be summarized as follows: The Jesus proclaimed in the Bible is not a historical person, and in fact He never existed. Instead, Jesus is an invention of the biblical authors who painstakingly copied attributes of ancient pagan deities and created a new god to be worshipped. Jesus mirrors various pagan deities in very exacting ways such as the manner of his birth, life, death, and resurrection.

Further, the movie asserts that astrology is the foundation behind much of the writing in Scripture. The end conclusion is that Christianity is a myth—just as all the pagan religions that came before it—and is therefore untrue. To address these assertions, it is helpful to break them down into three groups:

•     The subject of astrology and the Bible.

•     The supposed similarities between Jesus and mythological heroes.

•     The evidence for the truthfulness of the gospel accounts.

The Zeitgeist movie (from the German meaning “spirit of the age” or literally “time” Zeit “spirit” Geist) claims that the Bible is based on astrology and the stars. Perhaps one of the most telling statements in all the Bible regarding the importance God places on the stars is found in Genesis 1:16b: “He made the stars also.” This simple statement reveals the extent of the importance of the stars’ creation. Some biblical commentators have said this brevity of description is deliberate as God wants to in no way give the stars significance. In truth, rather than giving the stars, sun, and moon any value beyond what they were created for, there are a number of places in Scripture that denounce their worship. Deuteronomy 4:19 says, “And when you look up to the sky and see the sun, the moon and the stars—all the heavenly array—do not be enticed into bowing down to them and worshiping things the LORD your God has apportioned to all the nations under heaven.” In fact, Deuteronomy 17:2–5 prescribes a death sentence for anyone found worshipping the creation rather than the Creator.

In Isaiah 47:13 God mockingly asks if the stargazers can actually protect those who follow them from the real Power of the universe: “All the counsel you have received has only worn you out! Let your astrologers come forward, those stargazers who make predictions month by month, let them save you from what is coming upon you.” So the Zeitgeist movie’s claim that the Bible is based on astrology goes against what is written in the Book itself.

In addition to the faulty concept of astrology and the Bible being joined at the hip, the specific statements made in the film about this supposed link disregard historical facts. For example, the movie states that the number 12 in the Bible refers to the 12 zodiacal signs. So the 12 patriarchs, 12 tribes of Israel, 12 disciples of Jesus, are supposed to match the number of the astrological signs. This is out of the realm of possibility as Genesis was written around 1,000 B.C. with the actual events having occurred much earlier. History shows that the division of the stars/constellations into the 12 zodiacal signs did not occur until the Babylonians made the divisions around the fifth century B.C.

The meatier part of the first section of the movie is devoted to allegations of Jesus being nothing but a combination of pagan deities whose attributes the gospel writers borrowed to create their own new god. The main authority used in this portion of the movie, and the first major mythological figure presented as a forerunner of Jesus, is the Egyptian god Horus. If we see that the research on their primary character is flawed, it follows that the same faulty investigation methods/materials will be present in everything else.

The Zeitgeist movie makes these claims about the Egyptian god Horus:

•     He was born on December 25th of a virgin (Isis Mary)

•     A star in the East proclaimed his arrival

•     Three kings came to adore the new-born “savior”

•     He became a prodigious teacher at age 12

•     At age 30 he was “baptized” and began a “ministry”

•     Horus had twelve “disciples”

•     Horus was betrayed

•     He was crucified

•     He was buried for three days

•     He was resurrected after three days

If true, this would certainly be unsettling to followers of Christ. However, examining each point in detail is quite revealing. First, it is true that Egyptian legend has Horus being born to Isis. But where did the trailing name of “Mary” that used in the movie come from? No mention in any Egyptian literature links the name Isis to the name Mary. Isis was also not a virgin. No account of Horus’ birth makes this statement. Isis was not a virgin, but the widow of Osiris, another Egyptian god who conceived Horus with Isis. Finally, Horus was supposedly born during the month of Khoiak (Oct/Nov), and not on December 25th, a fact which does not help their claim of marrying the stories of Horus to Jesus anyway because the Bible never assigns a birth date to Christ.

Next, the film states that a star in the East announced his birth and that three kings came to bring gifts to the “savior.” However, when stories detailing the birth of Horus are examined, there is no star or three kings who come to visit him. Trying to link this to Christianity fails in any event as the account of Christ’s birth in Matthew has magi (wise men, not kings) coming to Jesus with their actual number not being stated. Clearly, the movie is using the traditions of December 25 and three wise men, not the Bible, to link Jesus and Horus. Finally, the movie calls Horus a “savior.” There are no descriptions of Horus being a savior to anyone or serving in that capacity.

This is an important point: the movie takes extreme liberty in the quick and subtle uses of Christian words and phrases that in no way accurately describe the actual pagan god or his attributes. This is seen again in the statements made of Horus being “baptized” and starting a “ministry.” The only accounts remotely related to Horus and water are the stories told of Osiris (his father who is sometimes combined in ancient accounts with Horus to form one individual) whose body was cut up into 14 pieces by his enemy, Set, and scattered throughout the earth. Isis supposedly found each part of the body and after having Osiris float in the Nile, he came back to life or became the lord of the underworld, depending on which account is read. In any event, stating that Horus was “baptized” is simply playing fast and loose with Christian terminology and is another obvious attempt to link mythology and the Bible.

In addition, Horus had no “ministry.” Horus becoming a teacher at age 12 (mimicking Jesus’ account at the temple as a youth) is nowhere to be found in accounts of Horus; neither are there any statements to the effect that he had 12 “disciples.” According to the Horus accounts, Horus had four semi-gods that were followers and some indications of 16 human followers and an unknown number of blacksmiths that went into battle with him. No accounts of Horus being betrayed are found in his portrayals and he certainly did not die by crucifixion in any account. There is an incident described in one story of Horus being torn to pieces, with Iris requesting that the crocodile god pull him out of the water he was placed into, but the movie does not mention this as it does not fit in with their agenda. Further, the movie puts the account of Horus as originating in 3,000 B.C., which predates the invention and practice of crucifixion, so there is another historical problem that must be overcome.

The claims of Horus being buried for three days and resurrected are not to be found in any ancient Egyptian texts either. Some accounts have Osiris being brought back to life by Isis and going to be the lord of the underworld. But there is no mention of a burial for three days and no mention of his physically coming out of a grave in the same physical body he went in with and never dying again. And there is certainly no account of Horus dying for others as Jesus did.

In the end, the attempt to prove Horus was a picture/forerunner of Jesus simply fails from lack of any historical evidence. The movie continues in this same vein with all the other mythological pagan deities that pre-dated Jesus (Attis, Krishna, etc.) As just another simple example, the Zeitgeist movie says that Hindu’s Krishna was also crucified and resurrected. However, Hindu teachings clearly state that Krishna was killed by an arrow shot from a hunter who accidentally hit him in his heel and after he died, he ascended to be with Brahman. None of the pagan deities, when accurately examined, mirror the Son of God recorded in the New Testament gospels.

Of course, neither does the movie note the following facts:

•     The many archaeological details confirming New Testament accounts.

•     The historically confirmed references to the details of the life of Christ.

•     The early dating of the Gospel accounts during the lifetime of the eyewitnesses.

•     The deep moral convictions of the authors and their commitment to truth.

•     The accounts of the apostles going to their deaths for what they believed.

•     The typology of Joseph and Jesus (used by the film to supposedly debunk the actual existence of Christ) is very well known and accepted by conservative Christian scholars as a foreshadowing of the first coming of Jesus.

•     All the good produced by Christianity (see How Christianity Changed the World by Dr. Alvin Schmidt), which are brushed aside with only the crusades and other like events being highlighted.

It is interesting to note that Christianity is the only faith attacked in the movie—Islam, Hinduism, and others don’t warrant a mention. Though the faith of the producers is not exposed, there is a blurb at the end speaking to the effect that “all is one,” with a clip of noted evolutionist / materialist Carl Sagan saying that the earth is a single organism and that a “new consciousness is developing” that shows all is one. This is paganism, pure and simple.

At the end of the movie, religion is called a distraction engineered by a secret group of people who are using it (along with the media and other mechanisms) to dumb down the population so they will accept with open arms a coming one-world government. This is the one proposition put forth by the movie that is plausible insofar as it is backed by prophetic statements made in both the Old and New Testaments. The books of Daniel, 1 & 2 Thessalonians, and Revelation speak to the ambition of a predicted world ruler who is to come.

It is interesting also that the movie quotes Jesus—someone they say never existed—from John 8:32: “you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free,” although they misquote it and say “you must seek the truth and the truth will set you free.” The producers of the Zeitgeist movie unfortunately do not do this and instead choose to align themselves with very questionable and outright fabricated sources to malign Christianity and label it and all religions as pawns used by a secret organization they claim is currently working to take over the world. One thing is for certain, reaching such a conclusion using faulty materials certainly requires a lot of faith. Much more faith, in fact, than it takes to accept the truth and historical validity of Christianity.

Christians should not be surprised that such unfounded claims are invented in the imaginations of unbelievers and passed along by others as fact, and in reality, they are to be expected. Peter writes in his first epistle, “But there were also false prophets among the people, just as there will be false teachers among you. They will secretly introduce destructive heresies, even denying the sovereign Lord who bought them—bringing swift destruction on themselves” (2 Peter 2:1).[1]

 


[1] Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

Questions about Family / Parenting: How do I survive trying to raise a teenager?

Many Christian parents wonder if they will survive trying to raise a teenager. Teenagers typically share certain characteristics. First, they are going through the stage in life where they believe they know all there is to know and what they don’t know isn’t worth knowing. Second, the hormones and chemicals charging through their brains and bodies hinder them, often rendering them incapable of reasoning as rational adults. They want what they want when they want it, and often don’t have any clue that what they are asking for will hurt them. It is the job of the parent to keep their children safe from themselves as they negotiate this difficult time of life.

Jesus teaches us this is Matthew 7:9–10 when He says, “You parents—if your children ask for a loaf of bread, do you give them a stone instead? Or if they ask for a fish, do you give them a snake? Of course not!” Sometimes children ask for things that look good to them, but which will in fact harm them, so it is the responsibility of the parents to do what is best. We have the same rules—if we ask God for something we think is good, but which God knows is not, He will not give it to us.

Having Jesus in your household is the best way to raise children. “Train a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not turn from it” (Proverbs 22:6). If you have become a Christian by asking Jesus into your heart, then the Holy Spirit is living in you and will teach you all things (John 14:26; 1 John 2:27), and this includes the way we raise our children. Children learn by what they observe from us much more than what we say to them, so being a good example is very important.

The Bible teaches us the importance of discipline. “He who spares the rod hates his son, but he who loves him is careful to discipline him” (Proverbs 13:24). “Discipline your son, for in that there is hope; do not be a willing party to his death” (Proverbs 19:18). “Discipline your son, and he will give you peace; he will bring delight to your soul” (Proverbs 29:17). It is very important to lay down rules and enforce them. When children know that what they are doing is wrong, some sort of punishment should follow, but it should be appropriate for the “crime.” Lying shows that a child cannot be trusted, so maybe until that trust can be restored, time spent out of the house should be very limited. They will want you to trust them again, so they will learn from that. The worst thing we can do is try to become our children’s friend instead of parent.

Discipline should always be carried out with the best interests of the child as the motivation. Ephesians 6:4 says we are not to make our children angry by the way we treat them (this doesn’t mean don’t discipline; it means don’t discipline in anger or frustration), but raise them with the discipline and instruction approved by the Lord. Make sure you are telling your child why the behavior is wrong, why you disagree, and that you are doing it out of love for them. Hebrews 12:7 tells us that God disciplines all His children when we do wrong because He loves us and it wouldn’t be good for us if He didn’t. When children argue about being punished, which they inevitably will, the wise parent replies, “It’s my responsibility to discipline you, and if I don’t, I have to answer to God. And He’s a lot tougher than I am!”

Finally, several things are crucial to survive raising teenagers: a sense of humor, a sense of conviction that you are doing the right thing, reliance on God’s wisdom in His Word, and prayer, prayer, prayer! Not only will these things help parents “survive,” but they will model good parenting which teens will eventually use when they become parents themselves.[1]

 


[1] Got Questions Ministries. (2010). Got Questions? Bible Questions Answered. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

Cold Case Christianity: The Case for the Historicity and Deity of Jesus

In a world filled with people skeptical about the claims of the Bible related to Jesus, it’s sometimes helpful to review the cumulative case for the historicity and deity of Christ. Like all collective cases, the power of the argument rests on the robust assembly of historical evidences. I’ve assembled some of these in this blog post and created a Bible “insert” (a half-sheet printable summary that fits in your Bible) to help you remember the case:

Read More:

The Case for the Historicity and Deity of Jesus (Free Bible Insert)