Integrity in Christian Leadership

The lesson is simple: even with solidly conservative theology, we sadly often find moral compromise in our ranks.

As leaders, we will often face situations that reveal what is in our hearts. When we are pricked, our people will see our hearts, and they need to see us bleed integrity—either true holy character or humble repentance. If there is one thing that the Protestant evangelical world needs right now, it’s men and women... Continue Reading

How is the Holy Spirit Our Helper?

By faith the heavenly Paraclete, the heavenly attorney, will save his people.

Jesus is the one with whom we need to be united, but the Holy Spirit is the only one who can unite us to him! There are certain things the Father does, certain things the Spirit does, and certain things the Son does. While they don’t do different works, they do different things in every... Continue Reading

Pastor, Don’t Avoid Uncomfortable Topics

It takes courage to preach the whole counsel of God.

Pastors, your people want you to go there. They are hungry for clear, compassionate, biblical teaching on the difficult topics facing our culture and their own families. Sexuality. Gender. Racial reconciliation. Hell. God’s wrath. Tithing. Church discipline. Divorce. Greed and materialism. War and violence. Charismatic gifts. Christ’s exclusivity.   Few pastors jump at the chance... Continue Reading

The One Book: Gospel Fear by Jeremiah Burroughs

A book that causes us to reevaluate something at the core of our identity as a child of God is a gem indeed.

Burroughs (1599-1646) exemplifies the Puritanism of the times well, with a deep love for his flock supplemented with powerful and theologically rich preaching. In fact, Thomas Brooks called Burroughs the Prince of Preachers for his passionate exposition of the Word to his flock. Published 28 years after his death by a group of friends who... Continue Reading

Jesus Is the True and Faithful Gardener Who Cares for Your Soul

He gives himself to the cultivation of the souls of his people through his atoning sacrifice and continual intercession.

Since “a garden was the place wherein we fell…therefore Christ made choice of a garden to begin there the greatest work of our redemption,” Jesus is the second Adam. It is fitting, therefore, that his work of undoing all that Adam did should begin in a Garden.   The Scriptures tell us that the Son... Continue Reading

The Man They Need You to Be

Letter to Myself as a Young Pastor

Ministry is going to be tough. If you stay faithful to the gospel, you will be attacked, maligned, misunderstood, and criticized. The temptation will be to defend yourself at all cost. After all, no one likes to have his name dragged through the mud—trust me, I know.   Playwright T.S. Eliot wrote, “In my beginning... Continue Reading

Hope and Holidays

Temporal rest makes us restless for eternal rest.

The ‘labour-then-rest’ mode of living points forward to the bigger narrative of our lives, and the even grander scheme of the cosmos, in which being forever with the Lord will entail resting from the rigours and nuisances of sin-beleaguered labour here.   If all the year were playing holidays, To sport would be as tedious... Continue Reading

Is the life you are living well-pleasing to God?

The Word of God tells us that we cannot compromise on the truths found there.

We must do some self-examination. Is the life we are living well pleasing to God? Are we in bondage to our flesh or are we walking in repentance? Let us honestly assess ourselves here, asking God to show us the truth. We must then repent of all He shows us then seek to become Spirit-filled... Continue Reading

Matthew 7:1

“Who are you to judge?”

What kind of “judging” is Jesus talking about? As in all cases, the context is a great help in understanding what Jesus is getting at. This text is in the Sermon on the Mount, which demonstrates the nature of true righteousness versus superficial religion. In this text, Jesus is concerned about the hypocrisy of the... Continue Reading

The Myth of Sexual Orientation

We should not uncritically accept and embrace an anti-biblical and secular concept of sexual orientation.

Why would a child of God who has been justified by the blood and righteousness of Christ alone, adopted into God’s family, and freed from slavery to sin by the powerful regenerating work of God in their life fight to apply such an abominable label, homosexual, to themselves? Our Lord bled and died not only... Continue Reading

Fighting for Our Children in a Transgender Age

Why we must help them understand God's good design.

It is now considered “standard practice” to treat gender-dysphoric children with puberty blockers, cross-sex hormones and surgery. But is it really a good idea to turn children into lifelong medical patients? We are talking about powerful drugs with negative side effects, not to mention surgeries that amputate healthy body parts.    From a young age,... Continue Reading

Grievance Scholars Expose the Trojan Horse of Social Justice in Faith & Academics

The Grievance Studies affair, also referred to as the “Sokal Squared” scandal, was the fourteen-month investigative whistleblowing project.

The mission was to create bogus academic papers and submit them to academic journals in the areas of cultural, queer, race, gender, fat, and sexuality studies. The authors’ intent was to expose problems in “grievance studies,” a term they apply to a particular approach to studying these academic topics that proceed from a radical political... Continue Reading

The One Book: B. B. Warfield’s Revelation and Inspiration

How much of Warfield’s writings will one have to read in order to gain an accurate understanding of him?

Revelation and Inspiration is a worthy place to start, because in it you will not only discover Warfield’s understanding of how God is providentially, and thereby supernaturally, bringing about what he eternally decreed, but also that this is unavoidably joined to and corresponds with the very character of his entire creation, in both its sinless and sinful conditions,... Continue Reading

Why Satan Is No Friend of the Family

If family truly comes from the mind of God and plays such an essential role in his world, don’t you think this explains why there are so many attacks on the family?

It’s pretty clear that Satan is going to be no friend of the family. Think about all that Satan can disrupt if he disrupts family. He disrupts our task of bringing more of God’s image-bearers into this world while also eroding the most basic and foundational social structure that supports and strengthens human beings so... Continue Reading

The Number One Lie the World Tells Our Kids Today

When ESPN bestowed on Jenner the highest of all their awards, the message was clear: human autonomy and individualism stand above all other virtues in modern society.

At the risk of oversimplification, I think understanding the nature and danger of elevating human autonomy is a starting place for helping kids understand the modern worldview, which counters Christianity. Underneath the message of so many songs, the moral of so many movies, the principles of so many causes, and the promises of so many... Continue Reading

3 Reasons Why Christians Should Lay “R.I.P.” to Rest

"Rest in peace" gives the sense that the deceased are "in a better place"—a place of rest and peace.

I’ve noticed something of a concerning trend over the past several years. It is the way in which believers speak about culture-impacting individuals at their deaths. Instead of simply expressing appreciation for their life and achievements, it has become commonplace for Christians to use the shorthand “R.I.P.” (rest in peace) on social media when speaking of individuals... Continue Reading

Jeremiah 29:11

The context of Jeremiah 29:11 indicates that it is not meant as a blanket promise of worldly blessing.

This verse contains comforting words, to be sure. But what does Jeremiah mean? Some have taken this verse and applied it to themselves and others in an unqualified way. “God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life,” they say. “He has mapped out the course of your life, and you only have... Continue Reading

Does God Want Everyone to Be Saved? (1 Timothy 2)

What does this verse mean in light of the fact that, in the end, not all will be saved?

Paul tells Timothy not only that the congregation needs to pray; he also tells him for whom they should pray: “for all people.” Included in the “all people” would be those spreading error within the church. For them, the church ought to pray that God might grant them repentance (2 Tim. 2:25). But they must... Continue Reading

The Biblical Story of the Body

I want to encourage you as we look together at what the Bible has to say about the story of the body, starting at creation and culminating in the resurrection body.

The doctrine of creation tells you what you are: A body/soul unity. God made the body of Adam from the dust of the ground. It was a biodegradable corpse, but then into this corpse, he breathed the breath of life. So the life of Adam is a body/soul union.    There is a good, better, best pattern... Continue Reading

6 Things You Should Know About Faith and Mental Illness

A robustly biblical theology of the cross and resurrection fixes our hope on Christ, who knows our suffering more than we do and who has overcome it objectively.

When the focus is on Christ, who is proclaimed to us in the gospel, we can pray with honesty, casting ourselves on God’s mercy. We aren’t coming to a judge, or even to a therapist, but to our heavenly Father who has accepted us in his Son. We’re not rubbing a lamp and making a... Continue Reading

The One Book: Revival and Revivalism by Iain H. Murray

Of the more than 300,000 books published annually in US, how is one to sort through such a smorgasbord of literary titles and select only the choicest delicacies?

The book, Revival & Revivalism by Iain H. Murray (Banner of Truth, 1994), uses the records of participants in both the First Great Awakening (1GA) and Second Great Awakening (2GA) to present a history of revivals in early America and their impact on modern American Christianity.  Murray assesses both revivals through the lenses of history and theology... Continue Reading

Van Mastricht, Edwards, and the Economic Trinity

Where was the scholastic theologian of the Great Awakening influenced by the great scholastic theologian of the Dutch Second Reformation?

As I have been reading through volume 2 of Mastricht’s work, I have been struck by the way in which both men constantly dealt with the importance of the economic Trinity. For instance, Edwards dealt extensively with the idea of the economic Trinity when speaking of the ad extra work of God in redemption.    In a... Continue Reading

Is It Wrong to Draw Moral Lessons from OT Figures?

This use of the Old Testament is certainly in keeping with Paul’s view of inspiration and the use of Scripture.

The God-breathed Scriptures are profitable for doctrine (teaching), reproof (exposing our errors—mental and moral), correction (restoring to an upright position), and instruction in righteousness. This last phrase is particularly interesting. The word Paul uses, usually translated as “instruction” or “training,” literally means “child training”—referring to the patient, repetitive, and illustrative manner in which children learn.... Continue Reading

Iranian Official: Mass Conversions ‘are Happening Right Under our Eyes’

Alavi’s recent observations (May 2019) echo those of church leaders in Iran—as well as other Iranian government officials.

Reportedly, Islamic clerics are expressing serious concern about many young people converting to Christianity. One Islamic seminary leader, Ayatollah Alavi Boroujerdi, remarked that “accurate reports indicate the youth are becoming Christians in Qom and attending house churches.” The seventh-largest city in Iran, Qom is the country’s epicenter for Islamic studies.   As persecution against Christians intensifies in Iran,... Continue Reading

The Proverbs

Proverbs anticipates the One who will vindicate the righteous and reward them for their service.

A single proverb is not designed for every circumstance in this life. We do not expect an uninspired proverb to apply at all times. The same maxim applies to the Spirit-inspired Proverbs of Solomon. Dr. R.C. Sproul uses the English proverbs “look before you leap” and “he who hesitates is lost” to illustrate this point.... Continue Reading

Where Are You Going This Sunday?

A heart changed by God’s Spirit would not ride roughshod over his commands.

What is the greatest commandment? To love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength and all your mind. And the second? Love your neighbour as yourself. Now, how do those two great commandments stack up next to: I preferred basketball to meeting with God’s people to worship him... Continue Reading

What Is the Bible, Anyway?

The Bible is a lamp that guides us through and out of this world.

The Bible is solid food that strengthens the mature. “For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the basic principles of the oracles of God. You need milk, not solid food…” (Hebrews 5:12)   We Christians spend a lot of time reading the Bible, hearing it... Continue Reading

Five Hard Lessons Learned from the Fall of a Once Revered Evangelical Leader

Pray for your leaders, especially for those who have a big platform.

While many have expressed sympathy for the fallen former church leaders, I believe that the Lord is much more concerned for the sheep who have been harmed by their former shepherds’ abandonment of Christ and His church. Woe to such false shepherds (Ezek. 34:2), who fed themselves by soaking up the adulation of the crowds... Continue Reading

Fixing Those Idiots

We need to be more aware of how our words reflect upon our hearts and on our Christ.

Go ahead and scroll through your favorite feed and tell me that people aren’t continually berating, belittling, mocking, and smearing each other. They are, and Jesus has a word for that – murder. Matthew 5:21-22 is absolutely clear that anger and name-calling are the fruit of murderous hearts. To avoid confusion let me say, I’m... Continue Reading

The Church as Incubator

The light of Christ must shine with clarity of God’s truth and warmth of His love.

The heart of Christian discipleship is growing to know Jesus, beholding Him through faith, loving Him who first loved us. To grow in the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ sets the trajectory of the Christian life. Grace points us away from self to Christ. We decrease; Christ increases. Our unworthiness, waywardness, and inability lead us... Continue Reading