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All in a Week

Last week proved to be quite frustrating. Challenges in scheduling, establishing routine, directing productivity, interacting with family, and going out in public started taking its toll. Rapid circumstantial change combined with a sense of previously unexperienced monotony brought me to a point of undue frustration. Change and uncertainty often serve as an impetus for st...

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The Church after the Coronavirus

The past three weeks have proved to be an unprecedented time of uncertainty for people throughout the world. Concern over the impact of the coronavirus has seized medical professionals, the elderly, those with weak immune systems, business owners, financial institutions, non-profit organizations, and—most significantly—local churches. This past Sunday, pastors and ...

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The Comfort of Justification by Faith Alone

John Owen--often regarded as the Prince of the Puritan theologians because of his prolific academic theological contributions--is best known for his works on The Glory of Christ, Communion with God, The Holy Spirit, The Mortification of Sin, Indwelling Sin, The Nature and Causes of Apostasy, and The Death of Death in the Death of Christ. However, among the many substantia...

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Pastoral Ministry and Pestilence

In the midst of the current worldwide Covid-19 pandemic, an account about the pastoral ministry of B.M. Palmer in the midst of a yellow fever epidemic came to mind. Yellow fever is extremely contagious and far more deadly than Covid-19; yet, Benjamin Morgan Palmer viewed the fulfillment of his pastoral ministry as of greater importance than his own safety. In The Life and...

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The World Attracted to the Church

Martyn Lloyd-Jones once notably explained, "When the church is absolutely different from the world, she invariably attracts it. It is then that the world is made to listen to her message, though it may hate it at first." Nothing is more important for Christian leaders to come to terms with in our day than this truth. History teaches us that when the church has sought to b...

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Hands Outstretched

One of my favorite things to do when leading a worship service is getting to pronounce the benediction over the congregation at the end of the service. A benediction is a divine blessing from Scripture pronounced by the minister in order to equip God's people as He sends them out into the world to live for Christ. The benediction is found throughout Scripture. Consider th...

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The Unique and the Normative in Acts

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...

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Count Your Blessings

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 ...

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God's Extraordinary Work in the Ordinary Family

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...

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From the Books to the People

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...

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