Ten Ways Pastors Can Be Bad Bosses
Bad pastor bosses lack leadership skills and they lack relational skills.
Most pastors have no formal training in either. Yet they are expected to lead and relate the first day they begin serving a church. Indeed, many pastors are expected to be bosses of full-time or part-time personnel even though they may have never led anyone. So what is the difference between a good pastor boss and a bad pastor boss? We will address the good pastor bosses later. For now, I will share with you our conversations with those who served under bad pastor bosses.
Why Churches Should NOT Fear the “Nones”
Religious researcher Rodney Stark debunks several myths about “nones,” Millennials, and religion in his book The Triumph of Faith
In a culture that preaches anything but the Christian Gospel, Millennials thirst for churches that provide ageless truths revealing the meaning of life. Thus the Church need not fear the seeming growth of “nones” in America. This represents an opportunity rather than a danger, since it simply requires that the Church pursues its central mission to “make disciples of all nations” by preaching the Gospel.
Why Orthodoxy Matters
Orthodoxy is an act of love. Loving truth leads to communicating truth with the goal of living in unity in the truth.
Many think it’s an old guy term, and I would agree. That is part of its appeal. Orthodoxy is concerned with what the true church has historically affirmed and denied about the first principles of God and salvation revealed in his word. God didn’t just give us his word; he made us a church. The divine authority of his word leads to churchly confession. We aren’t just concerned about what God’s word says; we pursue the understanding of what it says.
A Just Silence
Brothers and sisters, let's make sure that in our zeal for the execution of justice, we don't fasten burdens around the necks of others that we and they were never meant to carry.
There comes a point where the destruction, death, and evil of the world around us can begin to take a very tangible toll on our hearts and lives. In light of our limits, and in light of God's very own place as the ruler and righteous judge of the universe, we have to be willing to place the injustices and evils of this world into the hands of Him. Let's make sure that our attempts to be guardians of justice is not an attempt to claim for ourselves what ultimately belongs to God alone.
Briarwood Presbyterian Church Seeks Lawmakers’ Approval to Establish Police Force
Briarwood Presbyterian Church calls this a way to create a safer campus in a fallen world.
“They will conduct their own investigations,” explained Rowe. “They will conduct their own security. They will make their own arrests and instead of calling on the local law enforcement agency to take over the particular situation they're trying to control, they will do that themselves. All they will utilize from their other law enforcement agencies is their lock up facilities.”
Contentment in a Discontented World
Christian contentment is based upon dependence not independence.
We can be content, because life’s circumstances do not dictate to us. We live in Him. Christian contentment is based upon dependence not independence. Paul is no Stoic. He is not acting as though he is above his circumstances which have no effect upon him. Rather, in the midst of the difficult circumstances, he is trusting in God and looking to Christ in whom He has all things. He is not independent; he is Christ-dependent. For me to live is Christ. It is not being self-satisfied or self-fulfilled; it is being Christ-satisfied and Christ-fulfilled. And this makes contentment possible.
Every Component of Worship, Every Week?
Should fellowship, ordinances, Scripture reading, giving, corporate prayer, preaching, and singing be present in every service?
While certainly you should baptize converts as soon as is practical, if there aren’t people coming to faith every week, then there won’t be baptisms at every worship service. Finally, with communion Paul makes it clear that while the church in Acts 2 celebrated it every time they gathered, that there is liberty there as well. In 1 Corinthians 11:25-26, he says “as often as” you practice it, which would be a strange phrase for him to use if it was celebrated at every corporate gathering. Taken together, the New Testament models singing, prayer, and preaching at every corporate worship service, with the priority placed on preaching.
Regret or Repentance? (Poirier)
The Apostle talks about the difference between regret (worldly sorrow) and repentance (godly sorrow) in 2 Corinthians 7:9-10.
"Finally, regret and repentance differ with respect to others and oneself. Regret or worldly sorrow leads either to self-righteousness or self-condemnation. When we beat ourselves up, we also beat others up. We resent others when they wrong us, and we are quick to take offense and point out their faults. Repentance, on the other hand, leads to Christ’s righteousness. We rejoice that we are not condemned. WE glory in Christ’s perfect obedience and love, and soon, like Christ, we too mourn over the sins of others and seek to help them be reconciled to God (Ps. 51:12-13)."
On the Right Side of History?
Are you on the right side of history? It depends on which history? Fallible, human, hope-dashing history, or God’s certain glorious history?
A Christian view of utopia does not depend on flawed human creatures or imaginative visions but on the plans of an all-powerful God against whom no human opposition can stand. If God is for us, says the text, nothing can be against us—not times of weakness or even death, because “in all these things we... Continue Reading
The Role of Tradition (and Bias) in Science
Science, for all of its wonderful benefits, is still a deeply human endeavor.
To the contrary, many of the studies cited as bomb-proof evidence for the public dangers of secondhand smoke have been heavily criticized for years. What is really interesting is the role that tradition (presuppositions received from the past and present medical communities) played in influencing the studies’ findings. In each case, the unintentional bias toward a... Continue Reading
The ‘Mother of the Books’: A Case Study of the Consequences of a Seminal Muslim Idiom Translation
The study uses David Owen’s Sirat al-Masih to demonstrate that ‘ideas have consequences’ that extend far beyond the reach of the original document.
Under the umbrella of pragmatism, Owen spoke about using “Islamic style,” but as this study demonstrates, it actually morphed into Islamic thought forms and into a promotion of an Islamic worldview. It appears that he has served the Islamic agenda more than a Christian one…. The case study calls for a higher level of accountability... Continue Reading
Trump’s Supreme Court Pick: Religious Freedom Defender Neil Gorsuch
Scholarly Denver judge who ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby would fill Scalia's seat as the court's only Protestant.
Princeton University professor Robert P. George praised his friend Gorsuch as a finalist on Trump’s short list last week, saying: He is intellectually extremely gifted and is deeply committed to the (actual) Constitution and the rule of law. He will not manufacture “rights” or read things into the Constitution that aren’t there or read things... Continue Reading
New Research Debunks The ‘Ball And Chain’ Myth
Experts say married men are happier and healthier than single men.
Researchers Bradford Wilcox, a professor and the director of the National Marriage Project at the University of Virginia, and Nicholas Wolfinger, a professor at the University of Utah, examined recent sociology studies focused on the cost and benefits of marriage for men. They found a clear takeaway: Marriage is good for men in “every conceivable... Continue Reading
You Cannot Keep Religion Out of the Supreme Court
Every person interprets the world through a particular religious grid, whether it be through the Bible, or Islam, or Social Darwinism.
The real issue about the new Supreme Court nominee is not his credentials nor his record, but rather his religion — not his religious affiliation, but his world and life view which is the outworking of his religious views. As religion determines who a man is, so religion determines what a man thinks. Religion will... Continue Reading
The Execution of Lady Jane Grey
On February 12, 1554, 18-year-old Lady Jane Grey was beheaded after a nine-day reign as Queen of England.
I pray you all, good Christian people, to bear me witness that I die a true Christian woman, and that I do look to be saved by no other mean, but only by the mercy of God, in the blood of his only Son Jesus Christ: and I confess, that when I did know the... Continue Reading
Preaching As For The Free
The message of the gospel preacher is encouraging for those who have been freely, graciously saved and who are being gradually, graciously sanctified—brought into conformity to Christ.
The gospel preacher has given himself over to bring the good news of free salvation in Christ, through faith alone, to those held captive by sin and death. The gospel preacher does not impose himself upon the brokenhearted. He heals them. He does not put sinners in additional bondage, he liberates them. He does not add additional locks to the doors. He unlocks them.
Is Jesus Knocking at the Heart of the Unbeliever?
The unbeliever will not seek. The unbeliever will not knock.
When we are converted to Christ, we use language of discovery to express our conversion. We speak of finding Christ. We may have bumper stickers that read, “I Found It.” These statements are indeed true. The irony is this: Once we have found Christ it is not the end of our seeking but the beginning.... Continue Reading
Are You on Track if You Lead a Church of Less Than 100?
Most of the time church planting is a long, hard slog
“Pastors and planters should know the statistical realities of the average church instead of assuming they are a disappointment if they don’t match the atypical success stories they see at conferences or read about in books.” Every church leader or pastor desires ministry to be fruitful and to influence their community. But we need... Continue Reading
Do Christians “Go To Heaven” When They Die?
My answer is: Immediately, yes. Eternally, no.
The intermediate state for the Christian is immediate transition upon death into the presence of Christ in heaven, during which time we experience holiness (no longer being at war with the flesh, although final glorification awaits the resurrection), happiness, a heightened sense of consciousness, and knowledge of Christ in its fullest. But the “intermediate” state... Continue Reading
Christian Public Health Expert Fired for Belief Homosexuality Is Sin Settles Suit for Nearly $250K
"I am grateful this trial has finally ended," Walsh said in the statement
“Walsh, an accomplished public health expert, was invited to be the commencement speaker for Pasadena City College’s class of 2014. Some students, however, reportedly objected to his selection and highlighted videos of his sermons online and complained to the school about his religious views.” Dr. Eric Walsh, a Christian public health expert and lay... Continue Reading
Who Is to Blame for the Greatest Myth in the History of Science and Religion? These Two Guys
In the mid-nineteenth century there was no separate profession of science
“That distinction falls to American scholars from the nineteenth century: (1) Andrew Dickson White (1832-1918), the founding president of Cornell University, and (2) John William Draper (1811-1882), professor of chemistry at the University of New York.” Ronald Numbers grew up as the son of a fundamentalist Seventh-day Adventist minister, attending Adventist schools and being taught young-earth creationism... Continue Reading
Is The New York Times Ignorant About Religion?
In my view, the NYT’s progressive columnists are not as attuned to the role of faith in public life
“And given that the conservative establishment portrays The New York Times as the embodiment of all that’s wrong with elite media culture, critics and watchdog sites regularly blast the NYT for bias and even ignorance. Is The New York Times really ignorant about matters of faith?” This question arises from time to time, as... Continue Reading
Homeschool Family Sues NYC After Being Subjected to 60-Day Investigation
"Because social services is being told by the central office of homeschooling 'No, this child has not registered,' they then say this is educational neglect."
“Even though Acevedo sent a notice of intent to homeschool her son to the superintendent via certified mail, it was never registered in the central office, therefore, her son accrued unexcused absences. After so many weeks of absences, Acevedo’s son was referred to a truancy officer and social services for investigation.” America’s premier homeschool... Continue Reading
Sex Is Not Sexual Intimacy
A sensitive, humble, and patient approach is required in pursuing sexual intimacy
“We often adopt a shallow view of what sexual intimacy is. Out of ignorance or laziness, we take on this view from the world through past experiences, advice, and the media. We then sprinkle it with a little ‘righteousness’ and hope it will do.” Sexual intimacy is only a form of intimacy, and in order... Continue Reading
Washington Floral Artist To Ask U.S. Supreme Court To Protect Her Freedom
Washington Supreme Court says government can force people to create artistic expression, participate in events with which they disagree.
A Washington floral artist says she will ask the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse a decision Thursday by the state’s high court that concluded that the government can force her—and, by extension, other Washingtonians—to create artistic expression and participate in events with which they disagree. Related Case: State of Washington v. Arlene’s Flowers | Ingersoll... Continue Reading
When Assurance of Salvation is Fleeting
In a world filled with sin, the flesh, and the devil, assurance of salvation is the soft feather bed on which the Christian rests.
Dear struggling Christian, if our gaze is always within, assurance will remain fleeting. No doubt, we need to examine our lives and test the fruit, but true assurance, lasting assurance, secure assurance comes from looking to Christ and our union with Him. We want to see evidence of Christ’s grace in our lives, but we realize these evidences not by seeking after them, but by gaining a greater grasp on Christ. How do we gain this greater grasp of the King of Glory? How do we look to Him more? God has granted His means of grace to the struggling Christian for this very purpose.
The Most Important Reformer You’ve Never Heard Of
Today, the name Peter Martyr Vermigli, highly esteemed during the Reformation, rings very few bells.
Vermigli is the ideal Reformer to introduce to children on the anniversary of the Reformation, because he lived in several countries of Europe, leaving an impact on the continent as a whole. It has often been said that the pivotal religious movements of the sixteenth century are best described as Reformations rather than the Reformation. The rediscovery of the biblical sources and particularly of the gospel and the desire to return to the purity of biblical teachings were common denominators, but each country had, in some ways, a different and distinct Reformation. Vermigli participated in many of them.
Why You Don’t Read Your Bible
The excuses to put off reading the Bible are apparently endless--and often astonishingly pathetic--but the underlying reason is often spiritual despair.
While declining to read the Bible is hardly an exegetical strategy, it is still an act of despair before Scripture. Far more importantly, it is a temptation to every one of us--no matter how studied or long in the Bible-reading habit we may be. "The word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and spirit, of joints and marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart" (Heb. 4:12).
Women in Scripture: Lydia
Lydia's story also gives us hope for those whom we earnestly desire to come to Christ.
Lydia exhibited her newfound faith in word and deed. She and her household were baptized, and she opened her home to Paul and his companions. This was not a small thing. During their time in Philippi, Paul and Silas's preaching resulted in the deliverance and conversion of a demon-possessed girl, which was rewarded with beating and imprisonment. Also, the Jews had not given up pursuing Paul as a traitor to their faith. Yet, Lydia was willing to count the cost for the sake of her brothers in Christ and receive them gladly into her home.
The Evil of Sin
Every sin is a rejection of God’s goodness and a misuse and mutation of God’s gifts.
The point is simple: the evil of sin lies not only in transgressing a standard but in receiving something good from God yet using it in rebellion against him. Let us repent. Let’s repent of receiving God’s abundant and good gifts without living in constant gratitude. Let’s repent of using those gifts for our selfish and prideful desires rather than his glory. Let’s repent of worshiping the gift rather than the Giver.