The New Testament reminds us that though Paul may plant and Apollos may water, it is God who gives the increase (1 Cor. 3:6). Perhaps nothing demonstrates this quite like the history of revivals throughout the world…As God sovereignly gave the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, so He sovereignly commands the blessing that attends the gospel … Continue reading Revival, Then and Now
It is legitimate to speak of “receiving grace,” and sometimes (although I am somewhat cautious about the possibility of misusing this language) we speak of the preaching of the Word, prayer, baptism, and the Lord’s Supper as “means of grace.” That is fine, so long as we remember that there isn’t a thing, a substance, … Continue reading Sinclair Ferguson on Who Grace Is
A common, but often quiet difficulty in the Christian life is discerning how to have an appropriate response when faced with difficult circumstances or afflictions. When we read Scripture, we may sometimes get the sense that submitting to God’s will in light of persecution came easy to apostles like Paul. But is this true? We need … Continue reading What Submission is Not
Love is not God. But God is love. So what does it mean for God to be love? It does not necessarily mean that God is simply loving. Judaism and Islam and Mormonism teach a God who loves. But when Christians teach that God is himself love, they are saying that real love itself has its origin … Continue reading Defining “God Is Love”
Last week I was shocked to learn the news of a pastor I highly respect was fired for several instances of pastoral misconduct. When I read the statement prepared by the eldership of his church, I couldn’t believe it. I just listened to this guy preach a deeply encouraging sermon at a conference I recently attended. … Continue reading Witnessing Confessions, and Making Them Our Own
“Love on people.” “Doing life together.” “Being Missional.” “Life on Life Discipleship.” “Being Disciple-Makers.” You’ve probably heard at least one of those phrases used by someone in a Christian gathering this week. Some of the phrases are downright creepy (seriously, can we just cut “love on _______” from our Christianese vocab?) These kinds of phrases are not … Continue reading Are You Really A Disciple-Maker?
We have many reasons why we should be willing, even grateful, to step into relationships in which we are met with differences, criticisms, and even opposition and negativity. Continue reading How Negativity Refines Us