I suppose this is essentially a modern fulfillment of the biblical principle “your sins will find you out . . ."
The deal is all of Christ for all your nothing.
… for if this plan or this undertaking is of man, it will fail; but if it is of God… —from Acts 5:38-39
It has been asked in a variety of ways from the outside and the inside since the so-called "young, restless, and Reformed" tribe hit the threshold of unignorable visibility: Can this movement be sustained? Is it just a fad? What are your concerns, fears, and…
The ministry of preaching cannot be divorced from the ministry of soul care; in fact, preaching is actually an extension of soul care. There are a host of reasons why it is important for pastors who want to preach meaningfully to know their flocks as well as they can, but here are three of the most important.
Of course we should be glad when any purveyor of smut shuts down or suffers a setback. But we should not delude ourselves. The culture of porn is financially rich and dangerously addictive.
Jared Wilson, director of content strategy at Midwestern Seminary and Managing Editor of For The Church, shares why he authored “The Prodigal Church: A Gentle Manifesto Against the Status Quo” at the For The Church Conference in Columbus, Ohio on Tuesday, June 16.
There is a gospel spring beneath the deathly depravity of Judges 19.
The eternal God is your dwelling place, and underneath are the everlasting arms… —Deuteronomy 33:27
Natalie was one of my deaconesses. I say "was" because she passed away in January. One of my first memories of Natalie was at a funeral, actually, one of the first of the many I have officiated in my five years in Middletown. I don't even remember who it was for—it was not…
In the religion news headlines this week is the story of a pastor who has decided the Bible condones homosexuality. His church, it seems, has determined to see how they might live in a tension between those who agree and disagree. Dr. Mohler has a reflective piece on the situation. It is likely not a coincidence that the pastor in question has a son who has recently come out…
We familyolaters take what most of us consider the most important thing in our lives and give it the weight of our worship in a way that is both dishonorable and unsustainable. And we end up living "Thus saith the family" rather than "Thus saith the Lord."
The rainbow symbolizes the gospel, for God has "laid down his bow." To turn it into a symbol of pride, then, is sadly and truly to test God into taking it up again, to invite his wrath.
What kind of "stuff" does God use for his extraordinary work?
I relished this bit from Charles Spurgeon's revival sermon, "The Story of God's Mighty Acts":
A friend who called to see me yesterday, tells me that the lowest and vilest men, the most depraved females in Belfast, have been visited with this extraordinary epilepsy, as the world calls it; but with this strange…
Monday. What to do with these Mondays of ours?
"The Lord is in his holy temple; let all the earth blog about how cool he is with, you know, whatever your deal is, man."
In church, after all, no one can hear you tweet.
Too often our creativity and intelligence don’t adorn the gospel, but obscure it.
The pastor should give no harbor to about-talk that avoids to-talk.
Is Jesus smart? Does Jesus know the way the world actually is? Can he be trusted in this moment to give us sound counsel?
We sometimes expect pastors leaving under bad terms to leave a bad taste in the church’s mouth, but we don’t really think about what can go wrong when an otherwise good pastor leaves under otherwise good circumstances.
A word to my brother-pastors, who every week labor in preparing to teach the Bible in the weekend gathering while the dark cloud of the new cultural downgrade hangs over them:
Brothers, let's not go about our weekly sermon preparation and personal discipleship in sackcloth and ashes. Let's get into the vineyard of God's word, get some holy sweat worked up, whistling while we work, lifting our hearts…
"The only thing of value the church has to offer is the gospel."
… or buying Twitter followers or gaming the analytics to inflate website stats, etc.
At least 5 things:
1. It's dishonest.
No, it's not illegal. But neither are lots of unethical, dishonest things. The asumption that people make when they see "Bestseller" labeled on a book or 600,000 followers on your Twitter page is that you came by those accomplishments the straightforward way: attracting…
We are aiming for awe of God.
Christians should have nothing to do with utilitarian arguments against abortion.
From Reaching the Lost: Evangelism, the Bible study guide from 9Marks.
Evangelism is not:
Personal testimony. Talking about what God has done in your life may encourage Christians and intrigue non-Christians. And there's certainly a place for this in evangelism. But simply sharing about what God has done in your life isn't necessarily evangelism. Evangelism is telling others about what Jesus Christ has done to…
Biblically speaking, what can we learn about pharisaical behavior?
There are lots of websites that exist for the church. This is what it means for us to be For The Church . . .
Eternal love moved the heart of Jesus to relinquish… heaven for earth;
a diadem for a cross;
the robe of divine majesty for the garment of our nature;
by taking upon Himself the leprosy of our sin.
Oh, the infinite love of Christ!
What a boundless, fathomless ocean!
Ask the ransomed of the Lord, whose chains He has dissolved, whose dungeon He…
There is one great sign that you are loved more than you thought.
No, Victoria Osteen is not exactly right when she says we ought to do good for ourselves instead of for God, but neither is she totally wrong. She's derailed and in the ditch, but the right track is in eyesight.
Osteen is not totally wrong, because walking with God is a—let the reader understand—happy thing. It's a different kind of happy, to be sure. But it's…
Whole relationships carry on in the dark sometimes, especially in churches, where everyone is in relationship with everybody's projected version of themselves, with facades.
Salvation by Christ's work is a gift of grace received through faith. This salvation is total (Romans 8:30) and we see its totality in John 6.
Jared Wilson leads session five at the For The Church Conference on the Truth and Shepherding.
As changing views on gay marriage, among others, go to show, secularization marches on. Traditionalists may be on the losing end of historic real estate, at least for now, as well as booed out of the public square for their views on sex. Down the road, though, they still look to possess something else critical.
We think bigness is the way. We think bigness solves lots of problems. We think bigness is safety. We think we can get too big to fail. But it's the other way around.
Someday, Jesus the Redeemer will return to redeem everything. Fully. Completely. Eternally.
If you are only taking notes during the sermon because you feel you must, because you treat the sermon like a lecture or "lesson," I would encourage you to reconsider.
To those who trust in him for salvation, Jesus will never say:
"Go play somewhere; I'm busy."
"Fake it til you make it."
"I just don't think it's gonna work out between us."
"I knew you were a screw-up, but this one really surprised me."
"It's too late."
"I don't care."
"My assistant will get back…
A gospel-centered church will grow into a kingdom-mindedness that is a constant reminder that no local church owns anybody and that what is best for every local church is whatever is best for the expansion of the gospel and worship of Christ.
I love my friend Jesus, because he's sweet in all the ways I deeply need and greatly want.
Complementarianism is not generally about authority/submission, as if they exist in a moral vacuum. It is about what biblical authority/submission look like. Any man who treats his wife in a neglectful or abusive way is no complementarian; he is a walking perversion of manhood in need of repentance.
The art of preaching the gospel falls not only within the category of Instruction but also Exultation.
I wonder how the resolutions of us donut-eaters might stack up to these from Jonathan Edwards.
It's not the strength of the faith that saves, but the strength of the Savior.
"So they departed quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to tell his disciples." - Matthew 28:8
"And they went out and fled from the tomb, for trembling and astonishment had seized them, and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid." - Mark 16:18
"But Peter rose and ran to the tomb; stooping and looking in, he saw the linen…
Not warm fuzzies.
For The Church managing editor Jared C. Wilson preaches on the inevitability of weakness in pastoral minstry and the necessity of the gospel for pastoral ministry at the 2014 Desiring God Pastors Conference pre-conference event.
Our Christ's preciousness is more than deserving to be adorned with the drink offering of our very lives. And it is our willingness to adore him in and through our breaking open that shows we believe this.
This is not the image that most readily comes to mind when we think of pastoral ministry. Nobody flocks to pastor's conferences to learn about this. But it is incredibly important.