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Tag Archives: teaching

A Little Fire, a Great Forest

Ever since there have been people, there have been opinions. And ever since there has been more than one person, there have been diverse opinions. Diverse opinions often clash. Harsh language is as old as the Fall. Debates are nothing new. Believers have always been urged to guard our speech, and few (if any) of us have ever maintained a clean record in that regard. It is unbelievably easy to let careless words slip now and then. History is full of well-intentioned people who needed to learn when to put a sock in it. So really, this is a very old topic.

But now we have smartphones. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on July 29, 2013 in James

 

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The Offensiveness of Truth and the Truth about Offense

Seeker-friendly. That title alone is enough to induce a bitter taste in the mouths of a lot of Bible-believing Christians. While no one will argue against increasing accessibility for those who want to be saved, that goal has been pursued in a lot of unhelpful ways. Too often, churches have compromised or abandoned their message in order to avoid accidentally offending someone. Too many preachers have focused so hard on making their hearers feel comfortable that they neglect to actually say anything of substance.

In reality, there is an inherently offensive dimension to the Gospel. Self-righteous, independent humans don’t like being told they’re lost sinners who must cast themselves on the mercy of a God they’ve never seen, and thereafter obey Him. People overly concerned with being nice and inclusive chafe at the idea that there is only one Way to the Father. Naturalistic intellectuals will scoff at the idea that some God-Man will come in the sky and set up a thousand-year kingdom. God Himself, speaking of the first coming of His Son, said, “Behold, I lay in Zion a stumbling stone and rock of offense…” (Rom 9:33). He knew that many pride-blinded sinners would not be willing to receive Him.

Thus, it is more than fair to say that the Gospel — undiluted and straightforward — is offensive to the unredeemed human heart. It may even be fair to say that a presentation of the Gospel that does not strike that chord of, “Wait… what?!” very well may have missed the way Scripture speaks of it.

Truth is often offensive. Messengers and leaders in the Body of Christ ought not to shrink back from being truthful for fear of bothering someone.

However, and equally importantly, not all that offends is truth. Messengers and leaders in the Body of Christ (especially the younger ones) do well to take this seriously. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on April 25, 2011 in My Two Cents, Theology

 

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Hermeneutics Pt. II – Interpretation

Last week, we looked at the first step in good hermeneutics, observation. Observation is very simply just taking one’s time to see what the passage in question actually says. We have to resist the tendency to begin assigning meaning to things yet, but simply write down what we actually see in the Scripture.

Our example passage was Genesis 2:18-22. We ended up with a simple bullet list like this:

  • God said it was not good that man should be alone.
  • God said He would make the man a helper comparable to him.
  • God brought the animals to Adam to see what he would call them.
  • Adam named every living creature.
  • There was no helper comparable to Adam found among the animals.
  • God caused Adam to fall into a deep sleep.
  • God took a rib from Adam’s side and closed up the wound.
  • God took the rib He had taken, and made it into a woman.
  • God brought the woman to the man.

Ideally, this first step of observation should include a lot more of the biblical context, but for the sake of space on this blog, we’re taking on just a few verses at a time.

Now it’s time to start asking the question, what does this mean?

Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on May 11, 2010 in Bible, Theology, Women in Ministry

 

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Best. Sermon. EVER.

I’m working on a post on Genesis 1-3 right now, to continue the series on exegesis of passages pertaining to women’s role in ministry. Hopefully that will be out in a day or two.

In the meantime, I want to highlight what is perhaps the clearest, most inspiring, all-around gripping sermon on night and day prayer I have ever heard. I’ve heard a lot of them in the past seven years. All of them have been really, really good. And I’m not exaggerating about this one.

Stephen Venable rocked FCF this Sunday with his message. Download the mp3 by clicking here. Get the notes (Word Document) by clicking here. Or go directly to IHOP-KC’s website and watch the video archive here. I was at the 6:00pm service. It rocked.

Go. Listen. Watch. Read. Get inspired to pray and worship more. And then do it more.

 
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Posted by on April 27, 2010 in Intercession, Intimacy with God

 

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See you at Bartle Hall

The onething conference begins today… plan on this blog being relatively silent for the next few days. Although, of course, saying that, who knows but that I’ll suddenly be prolifically inspired? We shall see.

At any rate, if you are in Kansas City, swing by the Welcome Center and say hi. If you are not in Kansas City, webstream the conference. It’s free.

 

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The Post You’ve All Been Waiting For

Okay, maybe not all of you… but The Post Some of You Might Be Kind of Interested In, Assuming You Remembered It’s Coming is a much less compelling title. Anyway. This is the post where I intend to unveil the “mystery study subject” that I’ve been kind of cagey about lately. Drumroll please… Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on October 5, 2008 in Bible, Theology

 

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Corey Russell Tells It Like It Is

It has been far too long since I’ve heard Corey Russell preach. Well, not any more. He spoke at FCF tonight and it was brilliant. Go listen to it. It’s actually a lot along the lines of what I posted yesterday, but because it’s a full sermon and not a short blog post, it’s a lot more thorough. Plus it was delivered by the one and only Corey Russell. It definitely deserves a listen.

A couple of noteworthy quotes that made me really happy:

[On the subject of fellowshipping with the Holy Spirit] “We’ve got a billion dollars in our belly… and we’re living on twenty cents a day.”

[On the subject of struggling for righteousness in our own strength] “We’re trying to wield a William Wallace sword with a Minnie Mouse spirit.”

Go download it from the IHOP MP3 store… it will probably be a day or two until it’s up, but it’s worth waiting for.

 
 

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