Apostasy and Pastoral Preparation for the Conflict Ahead

If pastors aren’t preparing God’s people for the conflict that is already upon us, then we aren’t doing our jobs.

We really do face a conflict in days ahead. Many Christians still mistakenly believe that electing the right politicians will somehow save them from the cost of discipleship. But it is becoming clearer every day that such will not be the case. The presidency of Donald Trump may have brought a welcome respite from some... 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

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

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

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

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

We Shepherd Sheep, Not Beasts of Burden

People should never feel that we are angry with them when we preach.

When it comes to motivating our people, we may need to be firm, yet we should always be gentle. We do not need to breathe fire, nor do we need to yell at them. Back in the day people might have been motivated that way, and in some circles maybe they still are. But that... Continue Reading

Loving the Church, For Better or Worse

The church showed me acts of kindness and fellowship that I recall with affection to this day.

I love the church. I fully endorse Calvin’s way of putting it (and the shadow of Cyprian that lies behind it): “For there is no other way to enter into life unless this mother conceive us in her womb, give us birth, nourish us at her breast, and lastly, unless she keep us under her... Continue Reading

Stewardship and the Call to Ministry

As you look to future ministry, begin today the process of preparing for the work that God has placed before you!

If you are convinced that God has called you into His service, then you must be faithful to the task he has placed before you. Imagine the horror of Isaiah hearing the call of God to proclaim the truth and then choosing to walk away into the Judean desert the first time he ran into... Continue Reading

On the Millennial iGen Front Lines

We have found three guiding principles for making disciples among generations steeped in sexual confusion and brokenness.

Most millennials have been discipled by the culture into a “live and let live” mindset when it comes to sexual expression. The result is that warning often feels like hate, rather than love. However, we have to keep Jesus’ interaction with the rich young man in mind (Mark 10:17-22). Verse 21 says that Jesus looked... Continue Reading