Worthy of double honour — Expository advocating

Bible“Paul was telling the truth when he said that preaching the gospel is folly, but he also says, “God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise” (1 Cor 1:27).

A commitment to expository preaching takes a firm belief in the power of God’s Word and a humble recognition that the God-appointed means of preaching is better than whatever impressive or efficient model we might devise. God will build his church through expository preaching, and it takes a committed fool to believe it and do it…”

– encouragement from the Southern Blog.

‘An Excellent Documentary on Exodus’

patterns-of-evidenceBoth Andy Naselli and Joe Carter draw attention to an upcoming documentary on Exodus. Each of them has a link to the trailer.

The murders at Charlie Hebdo: are we really Charlie?

Dr Mike Ovey“It feels like we are at war. Doesn’t the flood of reaction to the mass murders at Charlie Hebdo, especially over recent days, look like a drawing-together before a common enemy? The ‘I am Charlie Hebdo’ mantra implies unanimity, a very clear sense of ‘us’: this was a war-crime by ‘them’ against all of ‘us’. …

But who is the ‘us’ and who is the ‘them’?…”

– Mike Ovey in London writes this opinion-piece on the Oak Hill blog.

Using Charlie Hebdo to attack Christianity

david-robertson“You could almost hear the collective groan throughout the Western World: “Oh no, here we go again,” as reports came in of yet another massacre done in the name of militant Islam.

Without even reading the newspapers you know that the responses will be the same – people demonstrating in solidarity, governments and columnists telling us not to demonize all Muslims and a general sense of outrage being exploited by various right wing groups.

All understandable. However I have been surprised by another aspect that shows a more complex and worrying side to our society…”

– David Robertson (Minister at St Peter’s Free Church in Dundee) is currently in Oz. He shares his observations of some responses to the Paris terrorist attack.

Theological extremism in a Secular age

Albert Mohler“One of the fundamental problems among Western elites is that they cannot understand a theological worldview – particularly the theological worldview of Islam. Being basically rational and secular in their own worldview, Western elites find it almost impossible to understand the radical actions taken by Islamic terrorists…”

Albert Mohler looks at the motivation for the attacks in Paris, and notes that there is no warrant “for Christians to enter into any kind of irresponsible and intentionally offensive form of satire”.

When big is not beautiful

John Chapman“To evaluate any piece of evangelism there are some questions which need to be asked:

1. Were there outsiders present?
2. Was the gospel truly preached?
3. Was it preached in categories which could be readily understood by those who were listening?
4. Were people able to listen with ease, or did the ‘atmosphere’ inhibit listening?

Over the last couple of years, I have spoken at several meetings where the large number of people present, in my opinion, has inhibited people’s ability to listen to the gospel with ease…”

– Originally published in The Briefing back in 1990, this wisdom from John Chapman is as helpful as ever. Thank God for Chappo.

Lord Carey ‘wrong to support State-sanctioned suicide’

Bp George Carey“Apparently the UK is ‘closer than ever’ to introducing legislation which will permit the terminally ill to end their lives at a time and place of their choosing. Lord Falconer’s Assisted Dying Bill simply will not die: it is deemed to be the virtuous and noble solution to the problem of unbearable suffering; the only ethical and justly moral response to a heartless society which insists on sustaining lives which simply no longer wish to be lived. We treat dogs better.

Former Archbishop of Canterbury Lord Carey is amongst the signatories to a letter demanding that the political parties pledge to giving this Bill parliamentary time after the General Election, in order that the issue might be finally resolved. By “resolved”, they mean, of course, that the Bill must be passed, or the issue has not been “resolved” to their liking and will simply need to be revisited until Parliament votes correctly. The only settled conclusion that is acceptable is the one which concludes a settlement in favour of ‘assisted dying’. The argument is teleological; the trajectory is locked…”

– UK Christian blogger ‘Archbishop Cranmer’ weighs in on the hot issue of ‘euthanasia’.

Related:

On the elimination of the suffering – Dr Megan Best. (SydneyAnglicans.net.)
Euthanasia lives again – Social Issues Executive of the Diocese of Sydney.

From Bishop of Tasmania John Harrower:
Euthanasia resources.
Depression, disability & ‘safe’ euthanasia
.
A Response to Giddings & McKim’s euthanasia proposal.

Five reasons to plant your life in a church and stay there

Hershael York“Not every pastor has the option to stay in the same church for a long time. God might call him somewhere else, a church filled with unregenerate or unresponsive members might force him to leave, or health needs of family members might dictate a move.

I do not mean to lay false guilt on those who have legitimate reasons to leave a church or go elsewhere. I do, however, mean to encourage pastors to default to staying rather than leaving, even in the face of problems. Here’s why…”

At The Southern Blog, Hershael York encourages ministers to consider a longer pastorate.

Getting Justification by Faith right

luther-doorIt’s vital to understand Justification by Faith correctly.

At The Australian Church Record, Matt Olliffe seeks to clarify the issues after a response to an article he posted on the ACR website.

“This essay seeks to vindicate the teaching that according to Paul, we are not justified before God at the judgment by our faithfulness, but by faith as ‘trust’, ‘reliance’, or ‘dependence’ on God and his promises for final salvation in Christ.”

Read it here (PDF file) from The Church Record.

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