I Could Have Been One Of Planned Parenthood’s Victims
My existence stood in the way of my mother’s dreams of escaping poverty. But, unlike so many, she decided to give me life.
My mother never graduated from college. She gave up her academic dreams to marry my father and raise me and my siblings. Although my existence was unplanned, my parents never made me feel it was unappreciated. They are the bravest people I know, and they made it clear that I was, and still am, loved.... Continue Reading
Children: What Should We Do When They Stray?
Whenever I am counseling the Christian parents of a rebellious child, there are five things that I always remind them of.
When I hear about the spiritual straying of the children of believers, I remember that everyone of us needs the same thing–the grace of God in the Gospel. I remember the power of the message of Christ crucified. I remember that part of my task, as a minister of that Gospel, is to remind Christian... Continue Reading
God’s Rest for God’s People
This wonderful rest — from which, in one sense, every other blessing we could ever desire on earth or in heaven flows — is nothing less than the rest of God Himself.
One of the surprising things about the Gospel is that Almighty God Himself invites us into His own rest! Most of us would probably give some money to someone suffering with a disease or to a newly released prisoner, but we would be less likely to invite him to live in our homes. But that... Continue Reading
Institutional and Theological Instabilities Threaten Evangelicalism’s Future
Conservative Evangelicalism seems to have invested more time and money over the last decade in building up a celebrity culture and publishing a disproportionate amount of fluff.
If you want an engaging preacher or a flashy conference, you turn to the evangelicals. If you want to know how to think, for example, about marriage, euthanasia, fertility treatment, issues of church and state — matters which are part of a pastor’s daily diet and which are becoming more, not less, complicated — then... Continue Reading
5 Reasons the Church Should Embrace Science
Science needs your insight, your unique background, your God-given giftings, your prayers as you collect and analyze data.
How better to solve the questions and problems we face than to combine scientific inquiry with the ability to petition the creator of the universe? Christians who pursue the sciences are in the unique position to do just this. Science can be one more tool we use to serve God and to serve our world... Continue Reading
There Are No Accidents With God
God has decreed all that has ever happened and ever will happen and ultimately brings about all things he has purposed.
God in his sovereignty even overrides our sins. Maybe you really blew it. You feel like your sin has wrecked your life. Maybe you are suffering long-term consequences for a bad mistake. Remember there are no accidents with God. God is not the author of sin and he doesn’t tempt us to sin. But even... Continue Reading
Reports of Evangelical Christianity’s Demise Are Overblown
Despite alarming evidence of decline, a recent Pew survey of religion indicates that the total number of evangelicals in America is holding steady.
Evangelicals, of course, believe that church growth and decline is ultimately in God’s hands. If America goes fully secular, we will receive that as part of God’s providential plans. But the clamor about the imminent death of traditional faith, in the short term, is much ado about nothing. Devout and secular Americans alike have... Continue Reading
China Doesn’t Want To Suppress Christianity, Just Control It
The real fight is not over whether China will become a country with a significant Christian presence, but who will control the burgeoning churches.
The Vatican knows this well. I have been told by insiders that the strategic thrust of Pope Francis’s diplomacy is all directed eastwards, towards the emergence of China as a great religious power. Chinese relations with the Vatican have long been fraught because of conflicts over the control of the Church, and in particular the... Continue Reading
Getting To The Root
Debates about any and all aspects of Genesis 1-3, like debates about the rest of the Bible’s content, are all rooted in the authority upon which we entrust our reasoning.
He who is God’s word made flesh trusted God’s written word through the power of God’s Spirit, and this has produced salvation. God’s word can and should be trusted. The First and Second Adam (1Cor. 15:45-49) reveal this. Who will you trust? We are given various historical examples and descriptions of sin in Scripture.... Continue Reading
MP: Use Anti-Terror Powers On Christian Teachers Who Say Gay Marriage Is ‘Wrong’
New Extremism Disruption Orders should be applied on those who “teach” traditionalist Christian views about marriage in the classroom
Simon Calvert, Deputy Director of the Christian Institute said: “I am genuinely shocked that we have an MP supporting the idea of teachers being branded extremists for teaching that marriage is between a man and a woman. “This is exactly the kind of thing we’ve been warning about. “The Government says we’ve got nothing to... Continue Reading
Meet The Filmmaker Exposing Planned Parenthood
How a 26-year-old founded the undercover operation to take down the abortion giant
“The videos, which claim Planned Parenthood profits from selling fetal tissue, caused public outrage and launched nationwide rallies. As many as seven states, including Texas, have planned hearings or investigations into Planned Parenthood.” For years, a group of pro-life activists and politicians have waged a fierce political and brand war with the Planned Parenthood... Continue Reading
6 Reasons We Shouldn’t Use Hymnals Anymore
...and why I don't find any of those reasons compelling.
“Hymnals are intended to be a collective statement of faith for the denomination or group that adopts it. The theological content of our singing is certainly stronger when we have a primary resource that’s been examined, vetted, and solidified on that basis.” A year ago yesterday I wrote a post about hymnals. A lot of people read... Continue Reading
4 Things It’s Okay to Say When You’re Hurt
Here are four things it’s okay to say about reconciliation when you’ve been hurt
“Sometimes, people who have been hurt badly in the past resort to patterns of forgiving everyone, or forgiving no one — both in a desperate attempt to find safe intimacy. Even if you haven’t been hurt badly, it’s okay (actually, it’s wise) to take time to detox from the hurt of the relationship.” Vulnerability... Continue Reading
Don’t Waste Death
My cousin’s death reminded me of a hard truth: death shouldn’t be wasted.
“When death comes knocking, we’re tempted to suppress the pain. We numb the pain with drugs, sex, entertainment, and alcohol. But when the smoke clears and the buzz fades, the fact remains that we’ve lost someone we dearly care about, and we can’t escape this sobering reality.” For a while, I’ve dreaded the inevitable... Continue Reading
The Nature of Brooding
A recent study shows how walks in nature can have an observable effect on a person’s negative thoughts, including anxiety and brooding
“Brooding, which is known among cognitive scientists as morbid rumination, is a mental state familiar to most of us, in which we can’t seem to stop chewing over the ways in which things are wrong with ourselves and our lives. This broken record fretting is not healthy or helpful.” Coleridge said something along the lines of how sentimentality... Continue Reading
5 Reasons To Keep The Kids In
Here are five reasons --with a few caveats-- why you should keep your children in worship
“In the New Testament, there is–by way of good and necessary consequence–the example of parents having their children in the gathered assembly. The Epistles were written by the Apostles to churches to be read before the entire congregation. In the epistle to the Ephesians, the Apostle Paul directly addresses the children in the congregation.” At... Continue Reading
Summary of By the Waters of Babylon: Worship in a Post-Christian Culture
Christians wrestle with how we should relate to the culture of unbelievers around us
“According to missional authors, in order for worship to be authentic for believers and understandable for unbelievers, churches must evaluate their cultural context and contextualize worship to that culture. Since the West is post-Christendom culturally, churches must avoid allowing their worship to be shaped by forms nurtured during Christendom and instead shape their worship according to the... Continue Reading
Gay Rights May Come at the Cost of Religious Freedom
Anti-discrimination statutes are conflicting with laws designed to preserve freedom of conscience
“I do anticipate the kinds of claims,” said Douglas NeJaime, a law professor at UCLA. “The kind of claim that you saw in Hobby Lobby—you could see similar kinds of claims in the same-sex marriage context: The employer objects to providing benefits to the same-sex spouse, claiming that it makes the employer complicit in the... Continue Reading
After Outrage, What?: From Outrage to Outreach
What can Christians do other than be sickened and saddened by the destruction of little, defenseless children, and the sale of their body parts?
The way forward for the protection of human life is to significantly decrease the demand for Planned Parenthood and other abortionists. That can only happen when the church, in earnest and en masse, determines to spend the time and the money to minister to women who, for a variety of reasons, have been convinced that... Continue Reading
Baphomet: The Satanic Tradition of Abortion
Before Christ was born, Satan killed millions of children in hopes of thwarting Eve’s promised Messiah. Now, after Christ, our children feel the wrath of a sore loser.
Christ has overcome the power of Hell and unleashed the power of grace, but as we endure these final days before Jesus’ Return, Satan is violent and venomous in his final throws. He seeks to exterminate children, to abuse children, and to deny children love, hope, and the knowledge of God. In modern America, Satan’s... Continue Reading
Be Kind, But Savvy, Too
A church that is selling out to the modern notion of niceness won’t be an effective one, but a seriously enfeebled one.
The calls for Christians to be nice are heard most often in discussions about the gay rights movement. The world accuses Christians of being mean, and some conservative Christian leaders are following suit. While still officially holding to orthodox teachings about sexuality and marriage, they’re starting to sound like LGBT activists when it comes to... Continue Reading
Las Cruces, NM Police Investigate Explosions Near Calvary Baptist, Holy Cross Churches
Explosions about a half hour apart shattered the serenity of morning services at two Las Cruces churches Sunday, but caused no injuries and only minor damage.
“It was a real bomb, I saw all the parts,” said Cavalry Baptist member Dennis Llewellyn, who said he was outside the church when the explosive went off. Llewellyn said he was a former special forces member with the Marines and recognized bomb parts that included an Eveready battery. He and fellow church member Mike... Continue Reading
A Prayer for When You are Lonely
This prayer is for the lonely at heart to seek God at the throne of grace:
So many people are lonely and seek to fill that loneliness in ways that could never fill their need. They think the cure to their loneliness is found in change or things or shallow relationships. Or maybe they seek to fill that void through shopping, social networking, blogging, keeping busy, hobbies, the gym, clubbing, or... Continue Reading
God Often Does His Best Work in the Darkness
Take heart – God is using the summer heat of trials to bring you to the highest maturity.
Trials remind us of what is already true: we are desperately dependent on God. We cannot function apart from God. We cannot make it to heaven apart from the sustaining grace of the God who raises dead men. God takes us through trials to decrease our self-confidence and increase our confidence in him. Being... Continue Reading
Living with a Sense of Eternity
By living in the light of the return of Christ and the coming judgment, Calvin became deeply conscious of the brevity of time and the length of eternity.
Calvin sought, personally, to develop a balance of contempt for the present life with a deep gratitude for the blessings of God and a love and longing for the heavenly kingdom. The sense that the Lord would come and issue His final assessment on all and bring His elect to glory was a dominant motif... Continue Reading
The Lost World of Adam and Eve: A Response
Responding to John Walton's newest book on the historicity of Adam and Eve
Walton has provided an example of what happens when one gives extra-biblical texts magisterial authority over the text of Scripture. His basis for interpreting the text of Genesis comes from ancient people who were polytheistic, believed in the ultimate source of the power of magic, and wrote much of their history in the form of... Continue Reading
Christian, Pro-Life, and Black: Advocating for ALL of Life
It is an inaccurate and pejorative stereotype to say African Americans do not care about life in the womb
Christians of all races must be concerned with life “from the womb to the tomb” (and beyond!). This is why Christians of any race cannot support Planned Parenthood as long as it conducts abortions. Believers must do this while continuing to creatively address other important issues. The struggle is for the right to life and the... Continue Reading
Nothing In, Nothing Out
We brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
When you are thinking of the judgment: We check everything at the grave. When the multi-billionaire John D. Rockefeller died, his assistant was asked, “How much did he leave?” “Everything,” he replied. Why not print this verse and stick it on everything you have or want: “We brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing... Continue Reading
Keeping Gossip Out of Prayer Requests
How do we keep gossip out of our prayer ministries?
Anyone can be tempted to gossip. But we can avoid it if we slow down and evaluate whether we are the right person, with the right motivation, talking to the right audience with the right information. A good prayer request comes from the good stored up in a good heart, and one day, we’ll all... Continue Reading
This Is The Last Post You Will Ever Need To Read On Why They Don’t Sing In Church Anymore
This is NOT the last post you will ever need to read on how to get churches to sing once again, but we do need long-term conversations on this
We may not be able to turn the tide in the rest of our culture, but with intentionality over the next generations, we can change the culture of singing in the church. This is not a non-essential of faith. This is not adiaphora. This is important stuff. If the ancient principal of lex orandi, lex credendi is true, if... Continue Reading