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Discernment Without and Within

Discernment Web

With the potential for the entire world to stream into our minds and hearts by means of the internet, it is safe to conclude that there has never been a time when Christians needed discernment so much as at present....

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When Satan is in the Church...


I sometimes fear that there is a willful naïveté in the church with regard to the presence and power of Satan. One doesn't have to look far into the Gospels, the Acts of the Apostles, or the New Testament Epistles to discover the reality of the spiritual forces of darkness and to develop a theology of the assault tactics of the evil one. But it might surprise some to see...

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Of Priests, Pastors, and Prophets

With the five hundred and third anniversary of the inception of the Protestant Reformation upon us, it will do us good to remember that the Reformation was not simply a defense of sola Scriptura and the rediscovery of the doctrine of justification by faith alone–it was a reformation in worship and ecclesiology. Since Rome had rooted its sacerdotalism (i.e., priesthood) i...

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Pastor to Pastor

A man preparing for pastoral ministry needs not only the scientific tools to learn the multi-variegated aspects of theology--he also needs the skill of experienced men to teach him how to weave them into the fabric of his ministry to a congregation. It is one thing to know the doctrine of God with scholastic and categorical precision; it is quite another thing to know how ...

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The Shoulders of Giants, the Counsel of the Wise

shoulders web

If the church is to be rooted in the timeless truths of God’s word, it needs leaders who are standing on the shoulders of giants in whom the Spirit of God was at work. If pastors are to navigate the overwhelming challenges of an increasingly secular and antagonistic society–not to mention the internal attacks from strong willed and self-seeking individuals within the c...

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Cancelling the Weapons of "Cancel Culture"

In recent years, our society has rapidly embraced what has come to be known as the "cancel culture." If someone has said or done something--at any point in his or her life--that cuts across the grain of the suppose moral rectitude of society, he or she is swiftly excoriated to the point of irremediable social ostracization. An immediate sentence is determined by the masses...

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The Mystery of Godliness

Paul teaches that Jesus Christ is the source of all godliness. There is no godliness apart from Him. His Person and saving work is the singular and exclusive source of that godliness that God requires and provides. Our God gives what He requires of Himself by coming in the Person of Christ. ...

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The Rarest Commodity

We live in a world of rare commodities. Men and women spend the better part of their lives seeking after valuable artifacts. Every summer, we would take our boys to ruby mining attractions in the Blue Ridge Mountains. When our youngest son was five or six, he was obsessed with gems. Over the years, Judah amassed a collection of gems that he had either discovered on his own...

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Augustine, Psalm 32, and the Grace of Justification

Lately, as I have been reading through Augustine's Expositions of the Psalms, I have been struck afresh by how central God's free, unmerited, saving grace in Christ is throughout his theology. Though he is not always clear about justification being a legal act on the part of God, Augustine, nevertheless, makes numerous statements about the acceptance of a sinner before t...

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Teaching a Barber to Pray

Peter the Barber is one of the most interesting figures in church history. He was not like so many othersof whom we have accounts in the annals of church historya theological giant. He did not start any charitable organization or initiate a movement to liberate an oppressed people. He was Martin Luther's barber (and, apparently was quit committed to the bowl cut!). In 1535...

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