Because of Jesus the sin we cannot forget God does not remember. —Tullian Tchividjian
The Daily Discovery (March 6, 2015)
ARTICLES I LIKE FROM AROUND THE WEB:
(Click title to go to full article)
Same-Sex Attraction and the Life-Giving Freedom of the Gospel – “In this latest episode of The Gospel Coalition podcast, Trexler shares his inspiring story of countering lifelong SSA with the life-giving freedom of the gospel. Helping Trexler tell his story and work through its implications is Sammy Rhodes, a Reformed University Fellowship (RUF) campus minister at the University of South Carolina, where Trexler worked as an intern.”
Passionately Pleading with God is a Good thing! – “Do you passionately plead with God in prayer? Pleading is a good and necessary part of our Christian lives. We understand adoration, confession, supplication, and thanksgiving are good marks of a vibrant prayer life, but pleading is often neglected.”
3 Final Reflections on the Inerrancy Summit – “Sadly, my time at the Inerrancy Summit has drawn to a close. Because of other commitments, I was only able to give it two days, but I am very grateful for the time I was able to spend there, and was delighted to meet so many of those who attended. As I wait for my flight home, I wanted to close out my time with a few reflections.”
Justification, law, and grace – “Since the inception of this ministry I have been approached by many concerned people who are convinced that they have sinned one too many times and have forfeited their salvation. They were being continually antagonized about their sin by a voice within. In every case, after some careful questioning, I learned that each of them have been part of a church or denomination whose doctrine of justification is a blend of grace and law, faith and works.”
Theology Thursday – Theism (introduction and background) – “The truth is that arguments like this are nothing but foundations of sand. They get us nowhere with atheists because most atheists see them for what they are. We can make presuppositional arguments all day about the Bible being an authority and being able to stand on its own. Those arguments are true, but if one doesn’t acknowledge the Bible as an authority, then they aren’t going to accept the Bible as the final word on anything simply because we insist on it.”
John MacArthur – Shepherds’ Conference 2015 | The Inerrancy Summit | General Session 1
The Error of “Friendship” Evangelism
Acceptance of Homosexuality in Christianity
“If you alter or obscure the Biblical portrait of God in order to attract converts, you don’t get converts to God, you get converts to an illusion. This is not evangelism but deception.” – John Piper
I’m Shocked That You’re Shocked
The surrounding culture has shifted, the remaining effects of Christianity on the culture are ebbing and most people don’t want to be at odds with the people in the office, their family, or the social circle. This is why the mainline churches such as the Presbyterian Church USA have abandoned much of historic Christian teaching. They recognized in the early 20th century that the culture was shifting and they shifted to keep up. Ironically, in so doing, they signed their death warrant and now they are losing congregations and members at an unsustainable rate. If the church is only saying that Oprah is saying, why go to church when Oprah says it so much better?
Worship is More Important Than Your Small Group
I love small groups. Don’t misunderstand me. They serve a real purpose in most churches, but their importance cannot and does not supersede our gathering together in corporate worship. We are the church. Worship is what we do. We gather together to meet with God, to hear His Word, to partake of His sacraments, to offer Him prayers and praise, to give our offerings, to confess our sins, to hear once again His assurance of pardoning grace, to dwell with Him. And we do this together every week. It becomes the very pattern of our lives. And though routine, it is the most important and glorious aspect of our lives.
“You Are Quite Wrong”
I used to celebrate that the emergent church has gone the way of the buffalo. With Rob Bell jumping the shark and Brian McLaren’s “marriage” of his son to another man it had outed itself as at best a reincarnation of old-school 20th century liberalism and at worst another vehicle for moving large numbers of people out of the church. But the reality is, the ethos and theologically unorthodox impulses haven’t disappeared. Even more nefariously these impulses have been incorporated as a part of modern evangelicalism’s already sickly emaciated theological assumptions. Perhaps the greatest lasting rhetorical aspect of the emergent methodology was its constant insistence that it was only asking innocent questions.
Biblical Womanhood is Often NOT Biblical
Most materials and sermons I got from Christians in my girlhood emphasized that the only way a girl or woman could be pleasing to God was to be a doormat to other people. Meaning, many hallmarks of codependency are present in this teaching, such as: It is biblical or good for a girl or woman to be passive. Getting one’s needs met is selfish; showing or feeling anger is wrong and un-Christian. One should always care about other people’s feelings, needs, and wants more than one’s own.
What Difference Does an Inerrant Bible Make?
At the end of the day, inerrancy is inseparable from Christology. If Jesus didn’t teach this view of Scripture, the argument would be over. The issue is not the sacrosanctity of a book, a “paper pope,” or bibliolatry. The issue at stake is the integrity of the person and work of Jesus. He can save us only if He is sinless, and He is sinless only if all of His teaching—including what He teaches about Scripture—is true.
Shades of Grey: 3 Ways to Deal with Ethical Dilemmas
Many a debate about ethical systems gets illustrated by the Corrie Ten Boom conundrum posed as Nazis knocking on your door to inquire whether you are hiding innocent Jews in your home. You can either tell the truth and sacrifice the lives of your refugees, or you can lie and, assuming you have the world’s most gullible Nazi at your door, spare the lives of those you have committed to protect. This scenario captures a classic question of which sin is the greater, and it presumes that there is no other option.
The Church and the Individual Christian
Second, this distinction between the purpose and responsibilities of the Church and the various callings and responsibilities ofindividual Christians frees the individual Christian from the burden (often placed upon them by others) to ‘transform’ their workplace, culture, or government – or to find uniquely ‘Christian’ ways of doing ordinary tasks. Christians are called to obey God at all time and in all things. They are to do all things from faith (Romans 14:23) – for the purpose of bringing glory to God (1 Corinthians 10:31), and as service for the Lord (Colossians 3:23). However, they are not called to these tasks in an effort, or for the purpose of, transforming the world into the new heavens and new earth.
10 Things You Shouldn’t Say to a Pastor Right After the Sermon
Pastors often take 10 to 20 hours to prepare a sermon. They pray for God to speak through them. They preach with conviction and fervency. And then they hear one of these sentences. These ten responses are close approximations of what pastors have actually told me. I am sure there are many more.
Reflections on Genesis 3:15
The significance of this passage can scarcely be overstated. In one short statement the underlying theme and meaning of history is laid bare. Whatever one says about the history of mankind, therefore, whether they’re looking at the specks of some seemingly insignificant incident, or the grand movements of a mighty nation, if this overarching perspective is fundamentally absent from their thinking, the task of making sense of human experience, whether it be the past or the present or the future, will inevitably fail to reflect the deep currents of reality. As a result, the historian’s work of collating data into a meaningful whole will inevitably run astray.
In the Old Testament a young man was considered an adult at age 13—once He was a “bar mitzvah”. He was to have memorized the Torah and was to be able to speak to its wisdom. He began to make his own choices, guided by a Minion of Jews including his father and relatives. If […]
The dreadful loneliness of life without Scripture
by Marsha West
Dr. Peter Jones, who is Director of truthXchange and Adjunct Professor of New Testament at Westminster Seminary, examines former megachurch pastor and emergent guru Rob Bell’s misleading defense of same-sex marriage. For one thing, Bell picks and chooses between Bible texts that seemingly agree with him, and those that do not. Jones says “he dismisses Paul’s teaching as mere letters from 2000 years ago that no longer apply, and then chooses a 3500 years-old text with which he agrees, namely Genesis 2:18.” Jones goes on to say that, “In a sentimentalizing interpretation of this foundational text, Bell launches into an emotive appeal for companionship, perfectly suited to his Oprah-taught audience.”
The Difference Between Outrage and Accountability
Yes! “For the Christian, shame and outrage can never be ends in themselves. While we value accountability, Christian accountability should always be oriented toward reconciliation and restoration – and seasoned with humility and love.”
Five Really Dumb Christian Copouts
by Bill Muehlenberg
The fact that there are a lot of really dumb, unhelpful, and just plain unbiblical things being said by so many Christians today is quite telling. It is an indication of how poorly we are doing in getting contemporary believers to actually think carefully, study Scripture regularly, and resist the worldview of the surrounding secular culture.
So much of what we hear some believers saying nowadays is indistinguishable from what the average pagan on the street is saying. How we have come to such a place where the Christian mind has so greatly shrunk, if not disappeared altogether, is not something I can here explore.
think 1But it is a tragic reality nonetheless. ‘Let my people think’ is the crying need of the hour. To get believers to move beyond mere emoting, and to actually think for the glory of God is absolutely vital in this day and age. But it seems to be as rare as it is vital.
I love how Thomas Sowell once put it: “The problem isn’t that Johnny can’t read. The problem isn’t even that Johnny can’t think. The problem is that Johnny doesn’t know what thinking is; he confuses it with feeling.” The examples of this inability to think, to reason, and to remain faithful students of Scriptures are sadly all around us.
Here are five of the more appalling things I hear all the time from some clueless Christians who seem to just follow what the worldview of secular humanism dishes up instead of what the Word of God actually teaches. These five are just mindless clichés and useless Christian copouts:
4 Signs Your God Is Too Small
by Erin Davis | 3/05/15
God is big.
He is so big that:
He measured the waters of Earth in the palm of His hand (Isa. 40:12).
He marked off the skies with the distance between His thumb and little finger (Isa. 40:12).
He made doors to shut in the oceans (Job 38:8).
He holds the stars in His hand (Rev. 1:20).
How big would God really be if I could control Him like a puppet on a string?
Yep, God is big and yet, in the Bible what we know about Him is just “the outskirts of his ways” (Job 26:14). We can’t even scratch the surface of understanding just how big He really is this side of heaven.
Maybe that’s why I tend to treat Him like He’s small. I reduce His power and His love to something tiny and insignificant. Or, more often, I think I’m the big deal around here. Then things tend to get really out of whack. With that pattern in mind, I thought I’d hammer out four ways to know when our concept of God is too small.
Do Liberals Stifle Intellectual Diversity on Campus?
NPR hosted a fascinating debate at George Washington University on this proposition: “Liberals are stifling intellectual diversity on campus.” All for debaters were liberal, but two of them argued in favor of the proposition (Greg Lukianoff, Kirsten Powers) and two of them against (Angus Johnston, Jeremy Mayer). Students in the audience were polled before and after the debate about their agreement with the proposition. This allows everyone to see what people’s views were coming in and whether they were persuaded to adopt a different view as a result of the debate. Here are the results:
Ana Marie Cox, having come out as a Christian, goes on “Morning Joe”
Ana Marie Cox wrote a compelling testimony several days ago titled “Why I’m coming out as a Christian.” She is a liberal/progressive writer, and she shares that she has been most reluctant to announce her new found faith for fear that Christians won’t accept her. Happily, she reports that the opposite has happened since her article came out. Watch above.
Dana Loesch also interviewed Cox for The Blaze. Watch below.
What Is Expository Preaching? An Interview with Dr. Steven J. Lawson, Part 1
What Is Expository Preaching & What Are Other Challenges Facing Evangelicals Today? An Interview With Steven J. Lawson, Part 2
This is part two of a three-part blog series where we asked Dr. Steven J. Lawson some questions about expository preaching, current issues facing evangelicals today and Expositor magazine.
What Not to Say to the Pastor Before the Sermon – Rainer on Leadership #104
Podcast Episode #104
I recently wrote a blog post on what church members say to their pastors right before they preach. It was surprisingly popular so we went a bit deeper into the discussion today.
Some highlights from today’s episode include:
- It makes it really difficult to preach after someone has criticized you just moments before the sermon starts.
- Many pastors are focused on the message right before the service.
- This is typically an issue more in smaller churches than larger ones.
- The mindset of a pastor right before preaching is typically one of prayerful focus.
The six points from the blogpost that we cover today were:
- The time right before pastors preach is a time of prayerful focus for them.
- If you speak to the pastor at that time, consider giving a word of encouragement or prayer support.
- Consider holding back any criticisms of your pastor right before the sermon.
- Consider holding back your request of your pastor to make an announcement.
- Consider asking someone other than your pastor to handle a problem right before the sermon.
- If possible, consider introducing people to your pastor after the sermon.
If you have a question you would like answered on the show, fill out the form on the podcast page here at ThomRainer.com. If we use your question, you’ll receive a free copy of Autopsy of a Deceased Church.
- Six Observations about Speaking to Pastors Right Before They Preach
- How to Make Announcements in Worship Services
The post What Not to Say to the Pastor Before the Sermon – Rainer on Leadership #104 appeared first on ThomRainer.com.
Treasure In Heaven
Q. I love your web site and visit regularly. Any idea what we would use treasure in heaven for? I know we can store it up, but I wonder why we would need it. continue reading
Doubting My Salvation
How Could He Do That?
Q. It seems that my wife can not believe that a loving God who gave his only Son, to pay for the sins of man,could condone the act described in Rev.21:8-9. She rejects “fire and brimstone” threats and wonders whether there is a deeper meaning to all this. continue reading
Our Time is Short
Truth2Freedom Blog Disclaimer:
This blog is an aggregator of news and information that we believe will provide articles that will keep people informed about current trends, current events, discussions and movements taking place within our church and culture.
A headline link on this blog post doesn’t necessarily mean that there is agreement or approval with all the views and opinions expressed within the headline linked article. Caution is also warranted with regards to the advertisements and links that are embedded within the headline linked article.