Platforms, Blogs, and Why We Write

As my thinking is being sharpened by this ongoing conversation, I propose that we adjust the way we look at platform.

The definition of platform is not “how many people click on your blog.” Properly identifying it as “a body of principles on which a person or group takes a stand in appealing to the public,” I would align myself with the confessions of my local congregation. If we do this, then people don’t get reduced... Continue Reading

Can a Woman be President? A Conservative Perspective

In order to think clearly about this question, conservatives must remember this: Male headship does not mean unilateral male rule

Some conservatives, while vocally adhering to male/female complementarity, are in fact practicing a form of chauvinism. This particular type of chauvinism rests on a hierarchical understanding of gender that extends to all male/female relationships. It is the belief that all men are called to authority and leadership; and all women are called to submission. The... Continue Reading

Restating the (Not Always So) Obvious

Repentance is every bit an act of free grace as justification.

Under pressure one may display a form of outward repentance when faced with the consequences of their sin and even be driven by a fear of Hell, yet remain unregenerate. This is because our ability to repent and believe is impossible unless God initiates the call and enlightens the heart. We enter this world spiritually... Continue Reading

From the Ashes

Have you seen new life rise from the death of your old life?

To grow in faith and bear fruit as a believer, we need to walk through the refiner’s fire. We need to be stripped of our sin. We need all those things that keep us from living for Christ removed. We need to then be molded and reshaped into the image and likeness of Christ. Paul... Continue Reading

Come, Let Us Reason Together

If we, as a denomination, are going to move forward then it is necessary that we have the integrity to name what we believe and to stop hiding behind ambiguous language.

I recall going to presbytery [PCUSA] meetings (I was in North Carolina at the time) and being asked to share bright spots of ministry. To a person, every bright spot was some service project or another. We celebrated hikers’ ministry, renting out a fellowship hall to a church youth group, food banks, you name it.... Continue Reading

Seven Myths of Contextualization

Attempts to contextualize without clear, theologically informed leadership will tend to produce disorder, divisiveness, and distance

“In the past few years, much has been written, advocated, and modeled to help us understand why we should be concerned about leading services in ways that people actually comprehend what we’re doing and saying so that they are impacted in the right ways (Mike Cosper’s Rhythms of Grace is one example). That might mean changing... Continue Reading

Providence and Contentment

Biblical contentment is a spiritual virtue that we find modeled by the Apostle Paul

“For the Apostle, true contentment was not complacency, and it was not a condition, on this side of glory, that could admit no feelings of discontent and dissatisfaction. After all, Paul frequently expresses such feelings in his epistles as he considers the sins of the church and his own shortcomings.”   Blaise Pascal, the famous... Continue Reading

Sex Offenders In The Pews: Let’s Not Be Deceived

Learning about deception is woefully painful. Living in its wake is a nightmare.

“In 2011, a young adult disclosed to me, her pastor, that my own father had sexually abused her as a young child. Three days later, my mother and I were sitting in a police station reporting my childhood hero. How was this possible?”   It’s a cold February day and I’m standing on stage eyeing... Continue Reading

Oh No, Not Another One….

Study Bibles create a need which they then generously fill

There are many comments one could make about the plethora of such Bibles.  The most obvious is that, to any with eyes to see, it is a publishing racket, designed to reinvent markets and thus invigorate income streams.  It helps establish the dominance of particular individuals within the evangelical world. It meets no real need... Continue Reading

But What About Proverbs 18:17?

In the Spirit of Proverbs 18:17-18 I suggest we listen to the cries of those who suffer

I shared earlier that a common component to the Proverbs 18:17 question is a desire not to make an assumption regarding the one being accused. In my personal experience, this concern is voiced after a wife has disclosed her husband’s abuse and the pastor is fearful of accepting her claim as the truth. While we... Continue Reading