Trusting the Good News in the Age of Fake News

The result of Truth Decay is suspicion, general uncertainty, and disengagement and alienation from one another and institutions.

Trust is a fundamental social capital, and as Christians we should lament its decline. But even as the integrity of our news outlets seems to erode before our very eyes–even as we are inundated with fake news–we must never let our faith waiver regarding what we know to be reliable, trustworthy, and true: The Gospel.  ... Continue Reading

A Response to “From Celibate Gay Poster Child to Future Gay Husband”

Those struggling with same-sex sexual attractions ignore the fact that other Christians, celibate or in marital or non-marital relationships, likewise struggle with opposite sex sexual attractions and temptations to sin.

The title of his article, “From Celibate Gay Poster Child to Future Gay Husband,” affords a key and primary clue as to why this happened.  It happened because he never renounced identifying himself with a sinful propensity or proclivity.  He failed to see his sinful bent was condemned by God, the Father; atoned for by... Continue Reading

5 Incredible Revelations From Last Week’s Abortion Hearing In California

Wild criminal proceedings took place in San Francisco regarding legalized abortion where Daleiden and Merritt are on trial for posing as potential buyers of body parts of aborted babies.

While the trial hasn’t started yet, this whole legal process has proved to be a huge mistake for Planned Parenthood, as it has already produced one insanely embarrassing revelation after another for them. Here are the five craziest things uncovered so far in court.   One of the wildest criminal proceedings in the history of... Continue Reading

On a “Need to Know” Basis

Why do we ask why?

When events happen in our own lives, we want to understand. We want to make sense of things. From personal matters like the loss of a job or the death of a child to philosophical complaints like the existence of evil or the unfairness of life, we want to ask God, “Why?” If we knew... Continue Reading

Finnish Politician under Investigation for Citing Romans to Oppose LGBT Pride

The police department said in a news release that the two members of parliament have been accused of “agitating against an ethnic group.”

In June, Räsänen, a member of the Evangelical Lutheran Church of Finland and former chair of the Christian Democrats, took to Facebook to criticize her denomination’s participation as an official partner of the Helsinki Pride parade.    A Christian member of Finland’s parliament is under investigation after she cited the New Testament on social media to voice... Continue Reading

Jesus: Salvation Is Through Faith Alone Because Jesus Is Enough

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith."

Paul there clearly makes faith the instrument of our salvation and contrasts it with works. These are two distinct principles, faith and works (Rom 11:6). Further, Paul knows nothing of two stages of salvation. Paul did not say, “For you are initially saved through faith alone but you will be finally saved through your works. That thought never entered... Continue Reading

The Devil Will Hang on His Own Gallows

There’s a bigger story playing out than just the one we’re watching.

You remember Haman. He’s the villain in the biblical account of Esther, the made-for-film historical drama that played out mainly in the Persian capital of Susa — today, the Iranian city of Shush — in the fifth century B.C. This story is an archetype of the biblical pattern, the grand story in miniature.   “The... Continue Reading

Leaders and 3 Types of Stress

We want to do all we can to avoid “no stress” and “debilitating stress” and to courageously walk into opportunities of “performing stress.”

“There are three types of stress. There is ‘no stress’, which means you don’t care and don’t bring your best. There is ‘debilitating stress’, which is not good for you or your family. And then there is ‘performing stress’, which helps you pull out the best you have in the moment. That is my level... Continue Reading

The Fruit of the Wilderness

Learning to trust God in the wilderness bore lasting fruit.

 I read the Bible more attentively than ever before and learned to love God for who he is and not for what he could do for me. I knew that the Lord would never leave me and would always provide for my needs. People sometimes wander from faith, wondering if God even exists, but those... Continue Reading

Little Greek Gems: Confidence in Prayer – Ephesians 1:18

The work of the Spirit is not a “one and done”, it has lasting, ongoing impact.

If a person professes faith in Christ and there is evidence of the fruit of the Spirit in their lives, you can pray for them with confidence, because you know that the Holy Spirit has already been at work, bringing them to faith, giving them a heart of flesh in place of stone, giving them... Continue Reading

What It Means to Pray ‘Your Kingdom Come’

The Gospels clearly identify two kingdoms, but the division is not between sacred and secular.

The miracles of Jesus are presented as evidence of a battle between two kingdoms: one of God and the other of Satan. Jesus continued, “If it is by the finger of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you. When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own... Continue Reading

What is God Saying to Us?

Christ is the only safe refuge from the coming Day of Judgment.

Hurricanes are warnings to us of the eternal judgment yet to come. They are like warning shots fired across the bow of ships that are sailing in rebellion to God. They are calls to repentance—to turn away from our sin to return to our Creator by trusting His Son, the Lord Jesus, for salvation.  ... Continue Reading

Grandchildren Are the Crown of the Aged

There is such beauty in seeing a grandchild following the Lord.

It’s right and good for grandparents to see that kind of godly grandchildren with a kind of pride. But it’s not the kind of pride that says, “Look at my accomplishment. Look what I’ve done.” It’s the kind of pride that says, “Look at God’s accomplishment! Look what God has done!”   “Grandchildren are the crown... Continue Reading

Tried with Fire: I’ve Got This!

The Lord will put us in situations where we simply do not know what to do.

It is not that we need to depend upon God. We actually do depend upon God moment by moment, for absolutely everything, whether we realize it or not. To remind us of this truth, God may choose to deprive us (either temporarily or permanently) of some gift that we have previously enjoyed. Alternatively, He may... Continue Reading

Was Jesus a person of color? An immigrant? A Palestinian?

Taken together it strikes me as an attempt to redefine Jesus way from the genealogy in Luke 3.

The better question to ask is, “are Jews persons of color?” And of course that depends on how you define “person of color.” POC is an obnoxiously American phrase. It is loaded with division, and in as much as it is true, I suppose it is also obvious. But historically its not a phrase that... Continue Reading

The Diet of Devotion

I need the discipline to embrace a diet of devotion.

Even Christians, after our hearts and minds have been regenerated by Christ, can be distracted constantly by the entertainments of the world, most of which are rife with lies, mirages and selfish indulgence. So what’s the right prescription? One answer is to cut out from our lives the things that so easily entangle us.   A year... Continue Reading

Abundant Life, Abundant Suffering

By faith, we look forward to the day sorrow and sighing flee away.

The Christian life abounds with suffering. That’s what we sign up for when commit ourselves to Jesus, because he has promised it. We should not be surprised when suffering comes because it is part of abundant life in Christ here on earth. The good news? Our suffering is nothing compared to what Jesus has suffered. ... Continue Reading

Wisdom Versus Law—What’s the Difference?

Unlike direct commands (law), wisdom admonitions tend to emphasize reasons and motives for acting wisely.

The wisdom of God given to us in Scripture may be found mainly in the Wisdom books of Job, Proverbs, and Ecclesiastes, although wisdom sayings and admonitions are sprinkled throughout the Bible (for some examples see Matt. 7:24; Luke 16:10, Eph. 5:15-17). Yet, unlike the law given at Sinai to Israel as the chosen people... Continue Reading

Salt and Light: Practical Applications for Today

Your faith in Christ and love for God must be translated into visible terms.

We must be willing to be hated of all men for Christ’s sake. Nor can we bring the light of God’s Word to bear on the life of the world if we retreat into a safe place of our own where we hide from the world and preach only to ourselves. The church is not... Continue Reading

Augustine and a Distracted Heart

Our greatest problem is our own willingness to be distracted.

I’m not sure that a distracted heart can be solved by removing Twitter, Netflix, Reddit, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, or any other platform. My right-hand causes me to sin, so I take it to the butcher block, only to find my left is causing me a bundle of problems itself! Ultimately, we may strip our lives... Continue Reading

Feeling the Ache of Anxiety

The path of the Christian life is one of faithful trust and obedience in the here and now.

Pushing his hearers to reflect on God’s persistent provision for plants and animals, there’s an important question Jesus asks that we must not overlook: Are you not of more value than they? Jesus touches on a doubt that can sneak into our thinking. It’s the lie that God has forgotten about us because he doesn’t... Continue Reading

Helps for Doubting Christians

Doubts need not equal defeat.

God already knows that we are doubters. Our calling is not to pretend we have no doubts, but to trust Jesus even with our doubts. Do you doubt that God can improve your marriage? Have you become content with your anger or rudeness, suspecting that God cannot help? Do you trust Jesus, but puzzle over... Continue Reading

Can You be a Christian without Going to Church?

One reads the scenes in heaven and it’s never, never about being an isolationist.

The Great Commission directed gospel work to be done within the ongoing framework of Christian community. The continual teaching and shepherding toward faithful observance of Christ’s teachings is not done in isolation. Nor is the accountability necessary to hold our spiritual feet to the fire of obedience done alone. We need the body of Christ... Continue Reading

Preacher, Study the Text—But Also Study Your People

A sermon isn’t a TED Talk; it’s a family talk.

Simply put, pastors, consider your people as you preach. Now, this might be easier for me because the church I serve isn’t very large. But even if our church had 500 members, I hope that I’d be active enough in my personal shepherding that I’d be able to consider individuals’ circumstances and spiritual health as... Continue Reading

Which Way Around the Mulberry Trees?

We may at times wish for the kind of personal and personalized guidance that David received when navigating the mulberry trees on the battlefield.

God was involved in the details of David’s life in a way that seems almost prosaic, and far different from our experience. It is one thing for God to thunder from the heights of Sinai, but quite another for Him to tell David which way to circle around the mulberry trees. Does a passage like... Continue Reading

Hope for the Dying

The Work of Harvest USA’s Hope Ministry

Did we help? Did we have an impact? We are never the best judges of the effectiveness or ultimate meaning of our service. We must simply follow where God leads, through good report and bad, trusting him to use what He chooses for His glory.   In 1987 I was serving as minister of a... Continue Reading

Biblical Fathering: On Being Forthright

Fathers are to present Christ as the center of their lives in a forthright manner to encourage their children to imitate them as they imitate Christ.

Raising godly children is a complex task requiring the best efforts of both parents. Men and women are given different attributes, preferences, and gifts that are intended to display part of the picture of God to their children. Together dad and mom are to present a full-orbed picture of our loving, nurturing, holy, and just... Continue Reading

Susannah Spurgeon: A Necessary Woman

Unquestionably, God used Susie to save Charles’s life and ministry.

a   Charles Spurgeon was one of the most important Christian leaders of the Victorian-era and, his wife Susannah (Susie) must figure into any estimation of his significance. Charles himself recognized her value when he wrote that he not only loved Susie but also that she was “necessary” to him. Susie supported Charles unwaveringly, setting... Continue Reading

Smiling at Storms

John Newton: Lost and Found at Sea

Storms come for us all. We can face them with terror or with faith, with unbelief or with belief. If Christ be near, unbelief must be far. The nearness of Jesus drives away doubts. Darkness flees his presence. The question is, have we drawn near to him?   I love words. I’m always fascinated by... Continue Reading

How the Charges Against Paul Frame Luke’s Purpose

With Paul on trial, Christianity is on trial.

Nearly every commentator and overview article highlights a number of major themes that receive exceptional emphasis in Luke’s gospel: the poor, women, Gentiles, outsiders, prayer, the word, and the Holy Spirit. The charges against Paul explain why these themes mattered so much to Luke.   Last week, I presented evidence from both Acts and Luke... Continue Reading