What I Read Online – 06/28/2013 (a.m.)

28 Jun
    • It’s helped me to grow as a worshipper
    • It’s helped me to see our gathered worship as a priority
    • It’s helped me to love the people I serve more
    • . It’s helped me to discover a wealth of helpful worship-related resources and leaders to learn from
    • Our slightly tongue in cheek trailer for the new book “Saving Eutychus: How to preach God’s word and keep people awake”…
    • Winston Smith sits down and gives us some things to consider whenever we are dissatisfied with our sex life in marriage.
    • Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words can never hurt me.” Really? Let’s not kid ourselves. Words are potent
    • Why do we gossip, slander, condemn, accuse, slash with sarcasm, joke crudely, boast, and lie? Every toxic word traces to some sort of pseudo-savior—something that the heart is clinging to more tightly than Jesus
    • Words are transformed through what Thomas Chalmers called “the expulsive power of a new affection.” For our words to become life-giving, and for toxic words to fade from our vocabularies, this new affection must be Jesus. Hearts taken by the beauty of Jesus will yield beautiful words
    • God’s name is who He is. And Yahweh or YHWH acts as a synecdoche—the part representing the whole
    • Using God’s name in a frivolous or insincere way is wrong
    • Created to Praise
    • I didn’t know what it meant, but I liked it. These words about the Word, obvious in their loveliness and yet pulsing with deeper meaning, have orbited in my heart since I was a boy. Who was this John, I wondered, and who was this Word? John, of course, knew Jesus personally. Can you imagine writing something like that about someone you’ve eaten dinner with? Either John was off his rocker or Jesus was God. I whispered those words as I lay under my Star Wars sheets staring at the glow-in-the-dark stickers on the ceiling: “The Word was God. In him was life…in him was life…life. God. Word. Life.”
    • Jesus dealt with many of the religious leaders of His day so forcefully because of their hard-hearted hypocrisy. Other people who were cognizant of their sin and ashamed of it—these He addressed with love and encouragement.
    • Among many other things, I think Christ’s example teaches us how we are to deal with those with whom we disagree. Sometimes we must be forceful and sometimes we must be gentle—forceful with the wolves and gentle with Jesus’ lambs.
    • Now, the judgment of charity assumes in a Christian dispute that the brother or sister with whom we are disagreeing is disagreeing honestly and with personal integrity
    • The gospel frees us to work from a position of acceptance versus in pursuit of acceptance. The first leads to rest, the latter to restlessness.
    • One of the great myths we all fight is that if we take frequent time off, we will be less productive. The opposite could not be more true. We all have limited physical, emotional and spiritual capacities. On a scale of one to ten, we are most productive when we are operating from the overflow of our emotional barrel rather than from the bottom of the barrel
    • The best way to gauge whether you are working from a position of rest is to ask, “What is my relational capacity?” Am I often frustrated, impatient, anxious or angry? If so, you are operating below a five. When I am working from a position of rest, I find myself filled with love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. When I am working in pursuit of acceptance, I find just the opposite takes place in my soul. The gospel reminds us that Jesus is enough, more than enough, so rest.
    • This text admonishes preachers and theologians to deep personal piety. There is an undoubted connection between the person (in this case Paul) who has a message, and the message itself (the whole counsel of God). To paraphrase Paul’s teaching, the whole counsel of God must be proclaimed by men who are clothed in humility, bathed in tears, and who have endured through difficult trials
    • the most profound and crucial need is for a person with disabilities to be made right with God by understanding he or she is a sinner in need of God’s forgiving grace in Christ.
    • The most important thing the church can do is to avoid the presupposition our culture makes—that people with disabilities are a different kind of people
    • The church desperately needs people with disabilities in its midst to be reminded that God hardly ever does things the way we expect
    • We, though we remain broken and sinful, are invited to the King’s table. We are given a status and honor beyond what we deserve or merit, just as with Mephibosheth. As we grasp this truth, and as those who live with radical brokenness are brought into fellowship with God and His people, the goodness of God is made manifest before the watching world
    • We live in a culture that avoids, rejects, and hides weakness and brokenness. Disability reminds us of what we wish (and try desperately) to deny—that we are all disabled in some sense, whether it is spiritual, emotional, relational, or physical. Our friends who live with outward physical disability cannot hide their brokenness as easily or as successfully as the “normal” population. I tell people that the gift my daughter brings to the church is her presence. Her simply being among God’s people reminds us that before God we are all deeply and profoundly needy people and God’s grace is rich for us when we embrace this truth. This is her gift to the church
    • As a pastor who ministers in a hostile culture, I am convinced that preaching must boldly proclaim the one-and-only gospel and theologically rich doctrine.




    • Preachers who minister in a culture that is hostile to the gospel must take pains to proclaim the gospel of God concerning His Son as we teach the whole counsel of Scripture. We do so with boldness, clarity, and joy, for there is no other message that contains God’s power unto salvation.
    • Our words to one another about one another not only describe reality. They also create reality
    • One major way we give life to others with our words is by not using any
    • All our words tumble out impelled by one of two motives. I am using words either for myself or for you. All my speech is either fueled by self (no matter how smiling it is) or by love (no matter how painful it is).


    • Just as the character of a culture is reflected in its architecture and art, the character of a culture is reflected in its language
    • The Internet did not exist when the Bible was written. But the biblical principles for Christian communication apply to online interactions just as they govern real-life interpersonal relationships and face-to-face conversations. Whether we are speaking in person, on the phone, in a letter, or online, Scripture provides us with God-honoring parameters for how we are to communicate with others.
    • Speaking the truth addresses the content of what we say.
    • Speaking the truth in love addresses the way in which we speak
    • In our evangelism, Paul’s instruction to speak the truth in love helps us remember that the goal of apologetics is not merely to win arguments, but to win people. And in practicing biblical confrontation with fellow believers, this same principle reminds us that the goal is restoration. After all, as Paul made clear, the goal of our speech is to edify others.


    • The Ten Commandments draw a straight line from love of God to love of neighbor
    • The gospel-set mind realizes the line in the law runs the other way as well. When we bear false witness against our neighbor, we are bearing false witness about God. When we lie to or gossip about our brother, we are implicitly testifying that God is not our God, that He does not care about honesty or justice. If we claim allegiance to God but tear down our brothers, we declare God a liar.


    • Both praise and prayer are appropriate and necessary responses to God’s revelation of himself to us. He has spoken to us, and we, in turn, speak to Him.
    • First, we must remember that God is our Creator.
    • Second, we must remember that God is our Redeemer.
    • Finally, we must remember that God will bring all things to their consummation—we must remember that all things have a purpose for God’s glory and our good
    • We’re doing it again! The Gospel Coalition’s second National Women’s Conference will take place June 27 to 29, 2014, in Orlando, Florida. Registration will open August 1. We look forward to sharing this event with thousands of women from across the nation and around the world.
    • “individualization of sex”—the assumption that sex exists for my fulfillment, my wants, my needs, my pleasure. But sex, Tripp explains, is designed to connect to the most significant things of life—worship, relationship, and obedience. “If it’s about these things,” he observes, “then it can’t be about just me.” It’s vital, then, for Christ’s people to hold up the beauty of Christ-honoring sexuality along with a loving warning that “disconnected” sex is as dangerous as it is distorted
    • 1. Corporate Worship Is Word-Centered.


    • 2. Corporate Worship Is Gospel-Centered
    • 3. Corporate Worship Is Congregational
    • 4. Corporate Worship Is for the Church
    • 5. Corporate Worship Is Led.


    • 1. Is it appropriate to have visual arts, like skits, in a morning worship service?


    • 2. What about baby dedications?


    • 4. Should a congregation recite creeds together
    • 5. Should we have multiple services divided by musical preference?
    • The two truths that touched me the most to convince me of the truth of the gospel were the Old Testament prophecies about Christ and especially His deity (for example, Isa 9:6), and the emphasis on grace and love in the New Testament
    • Typology is that study of Scripture which understands certain Old Testament events, persons, and institutions as historical and yet symbolic anticipations — or previews, prefigurements — of realities later realized in the New Testament
    • First, it seems there is some grounding in the vocabulary of the New Testament authors
    • Our warrant for typological interpretation rests also on the authority of Jesus, who frequently identified himself with some Old Testament event that foreshadowed him in some way
    • Our fourth line of evidence, providing warrant for typological interpretation, is, simply, the Old Testament itself
    • I should mention one further factor in this connection, a larger consideration that sheds light on the typological interpretation of the Old Testament, and that is the overshadowing context of covenant and promise that dominates the Old Testament
    • In this light, to hear that the work of some trendy representative of the angst, insecurities and obsessions of middle America somehow represents the kind of paradigm shift that comes along once in a millennium in self-evidently laughable
    • And that is why church historians play such an important role and our cynicism is such a boon. Church history keeps things in perspective. Through reading the texts and studying the actions and events of the past we can truly say that we have seen it all before. Thus, whatever it is that the latest guru is suggesting, it definitely will not work as well as expected, probably will not work at all, and anyway it will be a hundred years or more before we can say whether it made a real difference or not.


    • Also in the wake of the Reformation came the founding of The Society of Jesus, the Jesuits, an order of priests that would play a critical role in the history of Christianity. And among the Jesuits, few have had so great an impact as Francis Xavier who is considered by Catholics to be the greatest missionary since St. Paul. Even today pilgrims travel to Goa, India, to venerate him at the Basilica of Bom where his body lies, or to the Church of the Gesu in Rome, where his arm is on display. Francis Xavier’s arm, enshrined in the mother church of the Society of Jesus, is the next of twenty five objects through which we can trace the history of Christianity.
    • Francis Xavier’s arm aptly represents Rome’s entrenchment in their false gospel and the rising power of the Jesuits in their crusade to eradicate Protestantism and all other threats
    • Francis Xavier’s arm was used to teach, but it was used to teach a false gospel that denied the central doctrine of justification by grace alone through faith alone
    • First of all, you should, I think, talk to your children about this. No matter how you shelter your family, keeping your children from knowing about the contested questions about marriage would take a “Truman Show”-level choreography of their lives. That’s not realistic, nor is it particularly Christian.


Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

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Posted by on 28/06/2013 in Current Issues


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