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What I Read Online – 09/10/2013 (a.m.)

10 Sep
    • We are in some respects under far greater advantages for gaining knowledge, now in these latter ages of the church, than Christians were formerly; especially by reason of the art of printing, of which God has given us the benefit, whereby Bibles and other books of divinity are exceedingly multiplied, an persons may now be furnished with helps for the obtaining of Christian knowledge, at a much easier and cheaper rate than they formerly could.
    • Despite its similarities, however, it is not like the previous (Mosaic) covenant (Jer 31:32). First, the NC will not be broken (Jer 31:32). Israel’s history is one of repeated covenant breaking, but in the NC God ensures that it will not
    • First, we are confronted with the necessity of faith.
    • Second, we learn that since all members of the NC are regenerate, then pastors and churches, to the best of their ability (though admittedly imperfectly), should diligently work to ensure through their church membership process that only those who give a credible profession of faith should become covenant members (yes, I am a baptist).
    • Finally, we learn that all of God’s promises, including those made to Abraham, find their yes in Christ
    • Any model of ministry that circumvents the responsibilities of the church, no matter how well-meaning, is simply sub-biblical.
    • Pastoral burnout is a deadly serious issue that can be significantly diminished by a proper model of ministry in which the congregation is empowered to do the work of the church.
    • The risen Christ has given teachers and shepherds to his church “in order to equip the saints for the work of ministry.”
    • we give theological and philosophical foundations for ministry through instruction—whether from the pulpit on Sunday mornings or in classes on Wednesday evenings. It’s vital for people to be grounded in Scripture and sound doctrine as they seek to do ministry.
    • Pastors cannot micromanage every detail of every ministry in their church
    • We asked four churches to tell us how they equip their people to evangelize. Here are their responses. Answers from University Reformed Church, Sterling Park Baptist Church, the Village Church, and the Church at Brook Hills.
    • It’s the beginning of our story, and the beginning is sometimes as important as the end. But that reality, and more importantly our first parents’ existence, has been and continues to be challenged and denied by some voices even within the church.
    • By “historical Adam” we mean this: if there had been surveillance footage of the garden of Eden, it would have captured dust from the earth in motion, taking the form and shape of the first male human being. It would have captured a single set of footprints all over the garden and, at some point, would have captured two sets of human footprints and audio of a conversation between a couple and a serpent (among other things).
    • Peter is recalling one of the most earth-shattering experiences from his walk with Jesus when he was with him on the Mount of Transfiguration (see Matt. 17:1-13). In recounting the event, Peter is concerned to tell us that he was an eyewitness (v. 16) and heard God the Father’s voice from heaven (v. 18). Immediately after mentioning this historical event, with what initially seems like a jarring segue into describing the process of divine inspiration, Peter tells us that Scripture is not produced from man’s interpretation or will (v. 20-21) but by God himself through the Spirit. Why? The historicity of the events of Jesus’ life are inseparably tied to Scripture’s truthfulness.
    • God’s word not only causes historical events to occur, but also has authority to cause events that deviate from the otherwise regular pattern and laws of nature.
    • Under what we could term “theological scientism,” there are a number of alarming consequences.
    • First, divine authorship offers no guarantee of truth.
    • Second, divine authorship carries no more authorial weight than mainstream scientific conclusions.
    • For some helpful resources on digging deeper into this issue, here is one place to start: “Resources on the Historical Adam.”
    • Pursue opportunities you think would fit you, your gifts, and the kind of position you seek.  Pray that God would keep you faithful where you currently serve and pursue to talk to other Pastors who know you and let them know what you sense the Lord is leading you to do.  Pray for contentment where you serve while pursuing to prepare for the next place.
    • However, in most cases I believe the lack of clarity for the next ministry post is the Lord’s way of saying, “Stay put and be faithful until I move you.”
    • Pastor Johnston and wife and daughter find that they must return to the United Kingdom because of a provision of American immigration law preventing a disabled adult dependent from being granted long-term resident status in the United States.
    • Only a god who has not condescended to be Lord could be reduced to a pure concept. The true, triune God, who is the Lord, has come from the infinite to the finite. He has condescended, covenantally, so that we might have “fruition” of him. Apart from that condescension, there is no hope of knowing him; he would only be, at best, “a mere thought-entity.” But since he has condescended, and since the One who condescended is the cosmic and redemptive Lord, we are guaranteed, for eternity, to have true and certain knowledge of him. Whether we suppress that knowledge (in Adam) or rejoice in it (in Christ), in either case we know him. And that knowledge is, in either case, indicative of our covenant status before him. (71)

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

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Posted by on 10/09/2013 in Current Issues

 

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