Six months ago I was ordained as an elder at Grace Bible Fellowship in Sunnyvale, CA. Prior to my ordination, I was required to complete an oral examination. This two-hour, 70-question theological interview and was the final step in a multi-step ordination process that was designed to respect Paul’s admonishment to Timothy: “Do not be hasty in the laying on of hands” (1 Tim 5:22). These elders were not hasty, and I am grateful for their patience and care.
Continue reading “7 Practices for Preserving Unity On Your Elder Team”
In the last article, I discussed how professing believers should apply the parable of the soils to their own lives and the lives of their brothers and sisters. If you haven’t already, I encourage you to read this introductory article to see why it is vital for professing Christians to apply the entire parable to themselves. In this article I want to examine a specific point of application: eight strategies for cultivating a good and honest heart. Continue reading “Eight Strategies for Cultivating a Good and Honest Heart”
Late in 2013 Zondervan released another installment in their Counterpoints series–this particular contribution offering different perspectives on the historicity of Adam. Since their inception several years ago, I have appreciated these multiple-view books. Although I usually come to and leave these books holding firmly to one of the views, I am always grateful to learn, first-hand, how proponents of different positions articulate and defend their views. I am also encouraged to think afresh about my convictions and presuppositions, and nuance my own position if necessary.
In the case of Four Views of The Historical Adam, I come to the discussion as a young-earth creationist who believes in an historical Adam.
In this review, I will discuss a few weaknesses in of each contributor’s argument and methodology. I will then discuss one major weakness that afflicted the book as a whole. Continue reading “Where's the (Philosophy of) Science? A Review of Four Views on The Historical Adam”
I was a college sophomore when I trusted in Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of my sins. The spiritual joy that characterized much of my first few months as a new believer, however, would eventually face significant obstacles. One obstacle in particular that threatened to throw me completely off course was the sad yet steady reality of Christian defection. Continue reading “Ministry as a Means of Perseverance”
In the spring of 1741 Jonathan Edwards visited and ministered to a small congregation in Suffield, Connecticut. This little church was without a pastor for a short time but was blessed with a few excellent servants, including Edwards himself and the great evangelist George Whitefield.
A few months after Edwards visited the church, Elizabeth Hatheway, a member of the congregation, asked Edwards for some spiritual guidance. In response, Edwards wrote this young lady a lengthy letter with 19 points of advice on Christian living. Several years later, the letter was published under the title, Advice to Young Converts. It is currently published along with Edwards resolutions by P & R Publishing.
On point #3, Edwards gives some timely advice on how to listen to sermons.
When you hear sermons, hear them for yourself, even though what is spoken in them may be especially directed to the unconverted or to those that in other respects are in different circumstances from yourself. Let the chief intent of your mind be to consider what ways you can apply the things that you are hearing in the sermon. You should ask, What improvement should I make, based on these things, for my own soul’s good? Continue reading “How To Listen To a Sermon: Eagerness and Examination”