During every era of church history men and women have proclaimed, apart from Scripture, “God told me,” “God revealed to me,” and “God said to me,” as if these “revelations” are equal to the authority of God’s revealed Word in Holy Scripture. Why do we do this? Why do we seek additional revelation from God? Why do we desire
As long as sin has existed, there has existed the wicked desire to degrade, diminish, and devalue others. In our sinfulness and depravity, we act hatefully toward others. The Bible says that human beings are made in God’s image and likeness (Gen 1:26–27), meaning that, in some limited way, God has made us to be like Him
The fall of Satan and his angels is shrouded behind a veil and cloaked in mystery. Throughout the history of the church, Christian orthodoxy has regarded the devil and his minions as angels who were created by God but fell into sin and misery. William Gouge (1575–1653) wrote, “The devils by creation were good angels, as
Why am I not preaching with conviction? Why do I preach as though I don’t even believe the message I’m delivering? It’s a question many preachers have asked themselves as they drive home and ponder their 40-minute monologue in the pulpit. In this mental wrestling match, a preacher searches for his own sanity, at times at a
Today, there seems to be a large amount of confusion surrounding the doctrine of repentance. What does it mean to repent? How do you do it? Is it required for salvation? Is it a work? It is important for us that we have a right understanding of repentance, but in order to do that, we first need to understand the problem of sin.
In May Liverpool Football Club won the Champions League – soccer’s biggest domestic club trophy. It is worth millions of dollars, and the final game draws huge numbers of viewers - 400 million worldwide to be exact. To put it in perspective the Super Bowl figures amassed under half that amount.
Nothing on earth is more glorious than pastoral ministry. And nothing on earth is harder. Pastoral ministry is the shepherding of souls to glory. It is supernatural work. By definition, there can be no weightier, heavier labor on the planet. No stakes are higher than these: that you would lead the people of God to know the living God. This is, as
If you love the church, you must believe that God’s people deserve men who will be faithful shepherds in the midst of a frantic culture. No matter what era you peruse throughout history, faithful shepherds are always in demand. But is every man claiming “compulsion to lead the church” a man that should be trusted? We must
It’s fairly well-established that our culture in the West can be called “post-truth.” By this formulation people commonly mean that life in a “postmodern” age means that we steer clear of absolutes in our thinking and our speech. We don’t speak of what is true for all peoples at all places in all times; we speak of what is true for
Angels have not always existed. Numerous biblical passages affirm that God, in the beginning, created all angels. Job alludes to angelic choirs filling the heavens with praise to God in the event of creation, “when the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy” (Job 38:7). Though spiritual beings,
As a child, I was taught by my mother to value all speech. That every argument must be weighed, its logic tested, its validity evaluated, and the cogency of its thesis either received, nuanced, or rejected. Human speech is mysteriously and wondrously unique because it is one of the qualities, which we share with God
In Ephesians 3:4, the apostle Paul wrote of “the mystery of Christ,” expounding upon how something hidden for centuries could be brought to light—the revelation of Jesus Christ. We still ponder this mystery even today. We ask questions like: How could God exist in human form, yet still maintain in the fullness of His Deity? What
An old sermon illustration that makes its way around from time to time goes like this: There was a young preacher who was not lazy, just conceited. He frequently boasted in public that all the time he needed to prepare his “great sermons” was the few short moments it took him to walk from his parsonage, to the church just next door.
You really have one job in ministry, when it all boils down. You need to be faithful to God. In order to be faithful to God, you will need to stand your ground. You will need to recognize that the essential nature of Christian ministry is conservative. That is, we have a gospel and a Bible and a tradition of fidelity that
With each passing beatitude in Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount in Matthew 5, it becomes more and more clear that a person cannot be a genuine Christian without have their attitudes and actions completely and radically transformed from the inside out. Regardless the extent of your exegetical gymnastics, there is no possibility
Some years ago we did things a little differently at our church than we do now. We had a band that was filled with hired guns and we paid them to play the lights out every Sunday. To illustrate: our guitarist would tour the world with a famous boy-band, then roll in on Sundays to put on a show for our church – true story.
Authentic biblical spirituality always produces service and zeal in the life of a Christian. For instance, many consider Jonathan Edwards only as a theologian and pastor and give no credence to the fact that he was constantly concerned with the spread of the gospel around the world. They see his deep commitment to
The church, an institution whose existence transcends present history, struggles to offer its members its own chief good: transcendence. The church is not made by men. It was not created by an agency. It has no earthly origin. The church is the brainchild of God. The church has existence for one and only reason: God dreamed it into being.
There is no shortage of church planting resources available today. From articles and books, to conferences and trainings, to entire ministries—all devoted to multiplying churches around the globe. In preparing to plant our church, I had gorged myself on every kind of resource I could find, and soon became overwhelmed.
John Hooper, an English Reformer and pastor was severely persecuted for his unwavering stand upon the truth of Scripture which eventually led to his being burned at the stake. In 1555, three weeks before his martyrdom, John Hooper wrote the following in a letter: "You must now turn all your thoughts from the peril
In the text above I believe we have a biblical mandate to read Christian biographies. Remember that Hebrews Chapter 11 gives the example of heroes of the faith, which is meant to encourage us to “run with perseverance the race that is set before us” (Heb. 12:1). It behooves us, therefore, to remember past leaders who still speak God’s word
The fullness of the Christian life and all that it entails can never be experienced without the jaw-dropping moment in which God’s glory becomes everything to a believer. If you’ve not had such a moment, much is in store for you to experience. It is the most humbling moment of your existence to find that so little is actually
When most people think of the Protestant Reformation, their minds often latch onto the image of Martin Luther nailing his 95 Theses to the door of the castle at Wittenberg on October 31, 1517. From there, other names such as Calvin, Beza, Knox, and Zwingli are not too far behind. But what if I were to tell you that the
Critical to the Protestant Reformation was the recovery of the great doctrine of justification by faith. Martin Luther believed this doctrine was the doctrine on which the Church stands or falls. I will not assume that everyone understands the meaning of the word justification. But by justification, both Reformers and
Inerrancy means that the Bible, in its original manuscripts, is “without error in all that it affirms.” For the first sixteen centuries of church history inerrancy was accepted. People believed that the Bible was written by men, but men who "spoke from God" and were "moved by the Holy Spirit" (2 Peter 1:21). With the Age of
In 1947, writing a foreword for his friend Philip Hughes, Martyn Lloyd-Jones wrote, “There is no subject which is of greater importance to the Christian church at the present time than that of revival. It should be the theme of our constant meditation, preaching and prayers.” He described his daily prayer for revival as “an unusual
The church of Christ is a global church. From the inception of Reformanda Ministries it was our desire to reach as many people as possible with the good news of Jesus Christ. We are pleased to announce that in partnership with Soldados de Jesucristo, Reformanda is launching a new Spanish language initiative called
Prosperity is hot topic in the church. Does God care if a pastor drives a nice car or lives in a nice home? Does God command that all who follow Him take a vow of poverty and starve their families in a protest of earthly comfort? Bible teachers sell millions of books and accumulate mass amounts of wealth, are they in the same
In 2016, I officiated the marriage ceremony of my son, Jake, and his bride, Christa. In one part of the sermon I emphasised the permanent nature of the union. Here's an excerpt... In marriage God is joining one man and one woman together for life, because marriage is God’s design and God's doing just like all of creation is God’s design
Andrew Fuller (1754–1815) wrote, “A life of faith will ever be a life of prayer.” Central within the pastoral framework of the eighteenth-century Calvinistic Baptists was dependence upon the Holy Spirit and prayer as the primary means of Christian growth. Fuller’s friend, John Ryland, Jr. (1753–1825), concurred as he reflected