Salvation is for us but ultimately about God.
God can save us, one by one. He can bring the awakening that we need, with all the good side-effects that would follow from it. We’ve always known that, based on Scripture; and now, with each new headline, we can also feel its truth as never before.
I’ve noticed in my own heart is that my definition of ministry success is often determined by what other people think of me. Strong influence, wide recognition, and powerful spiritual authority can be good things. Those things can be leveraged for tremendous impact in God’s kingdom. But often my heart can gravitate towards those things quicker than they do the ultimate goal: honoring Christ.
It would make the preacher’s job a lot easier if these tough words appeared in the mouths of the wicked. Then we could just brush them aside -- "Nothing to see here, folks." So, sure, I get why people don’t preach these psalms. But here are four reasons why you should . . .
What is the relationship between theology and the church?
To mention the idea of a church disciplining its members strikes tenderhearted and naive Christians as weird, mean, and legalistic. So how do we work at keeping the biblical admonition to church discipline from seeming weird?
The power of an effective pulpit ministry is not determined by the rhetorical ability with which one preaches. Nor is it authenticated by the size of the congregation to which one speaks. The power of an effective ministry is determined by the faithfulness with which one seeks clearly, consistently, and courageously to proclaim the whole counsel of God.
Has God clearly impressed upon your heart and life in some way that the only course of life and action for you is to serve the Lord, even to the final drop of blood and the last breath of your lungs in laboring hard for the advance of the gospel? If not, please do something else.
What happens when someone gets lost in the crowd of church? They feel more like a number than a family member.
I’m not against strategies and tools. But what I’ve learned in the last few years is that Jesus hasn’t hidden anything from us. He is not at the Father’s side hoping we are clever enough to unlock the mystery of a healthy church.