Northern Illinois UMC Pro-LGBTQ Ordination Policy Ruled “Out of Order”

If such disobedience can even be reversed in Northern Illinois, then it can be reversed in in less liberal annual conferences, as well.

This episode shows that despite all the high-profile antics of individuals defying our covenant standards, we have not reached the place where theologically liberal United Methodists enjoy free rein to say and do whatever they want in defiance of what they call our “discriminatory” disapproval of sex outside of man-woman marriage. Not even in as... Continue Reading

A Pastoral Letter to Myself (In the Case that I Fall)

If you should sin in such a way that you are no longer qualified to serve in pastoral ministry, please put the following counsel in practice

“Your repentance should be as public as your sin (not in the sense of parading it, but in the sense of making it evident); and, if at some point you have a public platform of which people outside your local church are aware and talking about your sin, it may need to be addressed in an... Continue Reading

How a Christian Movement Is Growing Rapidly in the Midst of Religious Decline

We believe that INC Christianity is significantly changing the religious landscape in America – and its politics

INC Christianity is led by a network of popular independent religious entrepreneurs, often referred to as “apostles.” They have close ties, we found, to conservative U.S. politicians, including Sarah Palin, Newt Gingrich, Bobby Jindal, Rick Perry and more recently President Donald Trump.   In August of 2011, more than 30,000 people cheered wildly as the... Continue Reading

Pastors Should Beware of These Common Dangers

Though not exhaustive, I’ll list five of the most common dangers to pastors

“Relying on self proves to be the highway to spiritual calamity. Indeed, to state it again, trusting in one’s power and abilities and character to do God’s work will most assuredly give birth to a catastrophic disaster. The ministry of the Lord demands that the man of God utterly die to self — daily!”  ... Continue Reading

Christ Covenant Church Calls Reverend Kevin DeYoung as Senior Pastor

Dr. Mike Ross, who has been senior pastor at Christ Covenant Church for more than a decade announced his plans to transition into new areas of ministry early in 2016

In addition to his primary responsibility as senior pastor at Christ Covenant Church, DeYoung has also been named Assistant Professor of Systematic Theology at Reformed Theological Seminary in Charlotte, beginning June 1, 2017. He was formerly a Chancellor’s Professor for the Seminary. In his new role, De Young will be a residential, voting member of the... Continue Reading

The Necessity of Godly Leadership

Nothing destroys a church quicker than unholy men at its helm and nothing grants it more strength than godly men leading even as they follow Christ.

Our churches need godly leaders who preach not to tickle ears or to satisfy the critical listener, but aim at heart-change. Oh for men who dare to be courageous for the sake of Christ, not shrinking in the face of challenge or melting when confronted with difficulty. The church demands servants who gladly embrace the... Continue Reading

Making A Pastoral Apology

A sincere apology should include three elements.

Take full responsibility. It was, after all, your decision or your action that caused the hurt. If there were reasons for your actions, state them, but do not use them as excuses. And don’t pass the blame—or even share the blame. If you’re a leader, others might have been involved in the mistake, but they... Continue Reading

Singing from the Same Page

Singing the same songs unites us in a shared faith.

When personal words fail, how glorious is it to be able to rely on the words of Scripture and the text of a well-worn hymn to give voice to the truth of the gospel and to unite our hearts in hope. It behooves us to ensure that the people we shepherd are well prepared and... Continue Reading

How Should Pastors Want to Be Remembered When They Are Gone?

Dear brothers and fellow pastors, do not lost sight of for whom and what we labor to preach Christ and shepherd his people.

Begin now to consider how you wish to be remembered.  Will you want a tombstone like John Wesley (just outside Bunhill Fields) and so many others with monuments and flowery words that articulate all you accomplished for Christ?  Or, will you wish to be forgotten if it meant that Christ would not be forgotten to future generations?... Continue Reading

10 Mistakes Churches Make with Special Needs Families

How can churches better serve the special needs community?

What mistakes do Churches make when it comes to special needs families? Inaccessibility: Difficult to access main sanctuary or other facilities and services. Inflexibility: Resistance to adjust service times and format, youth activities. Impatience: Frustration with inevitable service disruptions, but also staying with the family through difficult seasons. Insensitivity: Comments, conversations, and decisions that unintentionally wound special needs (SN)... Continue Reading