Amid Calls for Cancelation, Promise Keepers Stands Strong
"We're teaching men to lay down their lives, to be godly leaders...It's amazing that anybody would be threatened by that."
USA Today’s Mike Freeman, a columnist for the paper, is the latest to bet that the NFL will back him in his absurd quest to cancel a Christian conference for daring men to act like… men! In today’s world, that’s apparently a shocking enough concept that Freeman thinks Dallas’s AT&T Stadium should call off the... Continue Reading
Same-Sex Attracted Identification is Not Above Reproach
This year’s PCA General Assembly will be focusing on the core issues around the question of same-sex-attracted (SSA) men and ordination to sacred office.
As of today, I am even more persuaded that an SSA-Christian man is not qualified for/not called to sacred office. He is not above reproach. Such a man has established as part of his identity a sin that is against nature (Jude 1:7; Rom 1:26). This identification may be nothing more than a confusion of... Continue Reading
Let’s Be Sure Our Worship Songs Do Not Contain Error
Worship, and especially corporate worship, is perhaps the highest calling for a church and Christians.
The hymns and songs we sing need to be biblically, doctrinally, and theologically correct because they are expressions of what we believe about God, the Father, God, the Son, and God, the Holy Spirit. They also express what we believe our relationship to be to each of the three in one. Words are important and... Continue Reading
The Unbiblical – and Common!! – Way to Handle Reports of Abuse in the Church
On abuse in the church, “A Cry For Justice,” gives an outline of what typically (and sadly!) happens when a victim goes to her pastor or church leadership for help.
The authors note that they have seen this scenario played out in real life more than a few times. And I believe them because I’ve seen it before and/or heard of it before. Please, don’t take reports of abuse lightly! Take them seriously – and get this book to help you walk through these tough... Continue Reading
How Is Social Media Undermining the Mission of the Church?
The church today, more than ever, needs to boldly fulfill the call to preach the gospel and exercise discipline to preserve the integrity of Christ’s Great Commission.
Much of social media behavior today functions to undermine the design and authority of Christ’s church in the opening and closing of the kingdom according to these keys. And many of our problems come because the church has not been faithful to exercise the key that shuts the kingdom of heaven against those who stand... Continue Reading
Key Signs of an Abusive Pastor #3: Overly Critical and Harsh with Others
Spiritually abusive pastors typically lead through fault-finding
The New Testament is not unaware of the problem of pastors who are overly critical and harsh with their sheep. In the long list of qualifications, Paul is keen to mention it: “Therefore an overseer must be . . . not violent but gentle” (1 Tim 3:3; cf. Titus 1:7)…Paul believes gentleness matters very much. No... Continue Reading
When the Abused Become Abusers
What is wrong is when the abused become abusers, the oppressed become oppressors, and the victims become the victimizers.
Notice that for Frankl, the abused can become abusers and the oppressed become oppressors because they can fall prey to a “danger (in the sense of psychological hygiene) [that] is the psychological counterpart of the bends.”7 For him, it’s not that external factors in such cases bring out what is already in people (i.e., their... Continue Reading
What Do Pastors Do with Power? Owning and Using the Uncomfortable Gift
Faithful, healthy pastors, and their churches, handle power differently than the world does.
Spreading power around, and pushing it out, is very different than giving into grabs. Power, like money, can be acquired justly or unjustly. It can be earned or seized. It can be given or taken, whether outright or through manipulation. Mature pastors, and congregants, know this. Healthy churches give their pastors space to take proactive... Continue Reading
Reformed by the Word: One Church’s Journey
Some can be won by your Christ-like love, even if they don’t understand your God-centered doctrine.
I became schizophrenic in my preaching. One Sunday, I’d preach on the sovereign holiness of God, because that’s what the text said. The next I would try to entertain with a skit or other ‘clever’ innovation. But the Word of God would not let go. I didn’t know it at the time, but God was... Continue Reading
Three Cheers for Cultural Christianity
Cultural Christianity would provide us with a theological-moral, socio-political vocabulary and framework without which no cooperation could be possible...
That cultural Christianity in Middletown, Ohio, however poorly practiced and (likely) heterodox, influenced Vance (decades later) to take his faith more seriously is a good outcome, and one that contradicts the mood and narrative of Ortlundism. Among other things, Vance’s testimony discusses how his newfound Catholicism is spurring him on to be a committed, loving... Continue Reading