The book of Acts is the sequel to the record of the history of the earthly life and ministry of Jesus. Rather than recording what Jesus did and taught during His earthly ministry, Lukes gives us the record of the history of the ascended Jesus through His apostles for the advancement of the Kingdom in the fullness of redemptive history. Acts is, in short, the history of th...Keep Reading
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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 and pronounced on social media in order to ensure its execution. There is no mercy, no call to repentance, and no hope of restoration...The rashness and widespread nature of the execution is, in part, the thing that makes cancel culture so brutal. The bitter and self-righteous speech of those pronouncing judgment gives the unremitting banter a veneer of justice. This is what makes cancel culture such a powerful weapon; yet, I suggest, a weapon to be avoided by Christians. ...
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. ...
May we not fall into ritualistic, Christless, and imbalanced approaches to the means of grace in our churches. How we minister the means of grace in the context of public worship is more important than simply professing to be “an ordinary means of grace church.” May the ordinary means of grace be more than a Shibboleth to us....
There is a clear pattern in Scripture of the way in which God uses the praises of His people for their future deliverances and the evangelization of the nations. May we enter into His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise, knowing that our God is enthroned on the praises of His people. We need His deliverance and the watching nations need His salvation....
By restraining wrong opinions about His person and work...
If you grew up in a Christian home, you almost certainly sang a number of hymns as a child that have stuck with you (for good or ill) throughout your life. I distinctly remember singing the chorus to the hymn, “Count Your Blessings,” with my sister in the back of our parents’ car. The last two lines of the chorus seemed to play on repeat in my little mind: “Count ...Keep Reading
Over the past decade, a barrage of articles and blog posts have been blanketed across the landscape of the internet--promoting and counteracting the idea of radical and extraordinary Christian service. Those who have emphasized radical Christian service have done so in an attempt to thwart the complacent, materialistic, self-focused, inhospitable, and unmerciful lifestyle...Keep Reading
Like so many pastors I know, I have long had a love affair with books. Books are the best of friends, smiling down from where they sit on the shelf––urging you to come and spend time with them. "A good book," as one has put it, "is like a good friend. It will stay with you for the rest of your life. When you first get to know it, it will give you excitement and advent...Keep Reading
I have sometimes heard well-meaning believers--who have recently come to a better grasp of God's sovereignty and the doctrines of grace--make inaccurate or disproportionate statements about God's end in redemption. Many years ago, I watched a man--who was preparing for ministry--go around telling other believers, "The gospel is not about you and your salvation; it's about...Keep Reading
A young church planter in a small town was getting his hair cut by a woman he knew. "You're not like the other pastor whose hair I cut," she said. He asked what she meant. She quickly replied, "You don't talk about your congregants negatively." Apparently, there was a minister who would come in and vent all of his frustrations about different people in his congregation to...Keep Reading
It is not uncommon to come across statements on repentance on social media. Most of these come in the form of atomistic sayings. Some of these statements--though well-meaning--are simply theologically inaccurate. Others lack biblical nuance. Many fail to connect repentance to the good news of the gospel. Still others gives the impression that repentance is a legal and pre...Keep Reading
There is a beautiful picture, in C.S. Lewis' The Voyage of the Dawn Treader--where he portrays the transformation of a sinner by means of the figure of a dragon-like boy being descaled by Aslan. With this symbolism, Lewis depicts what Christ does in transforming those He has redeemed and called to Himself. This symbolic picture is set in the middle of a dialogue between E...Keep Reading
There is so much we do not know about the experience of believers in glory. The Scriptures give us just enough insight to stir up within us an anticipated longing to be in glory. "Being with Jesus" is the most common way in which Christ and the apostles spoke about the believer's eternal happiness. Jesus told His disciples, "If I go and prepare a place for you, I will com...Keep Reading
Talking about the Church is actually quite a difficult task, since Scripture speaks of the Church in a variety of ways. More often than not, individuals have failed to rightly distinguish between the different ways in which the biblical authors speak about the church. This, of course, raises the question, "What is the Church?" In order to give the most biblically robust a...Keep Reading