Articles by Joe Rigney

The Shadrach Option

Joe Rigney
The Shadrach Option
Shadrach and his friends, along with the early Christians, recognized the idolatrous claim for what it was, and they refused to go along. They defied. They said, “No.” And here’s the clincher: They did so because they were seeking the good of the city.
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When to Baptize Our Believing Children

Joe Rigney
When to Baptize Our Believing Children
Baptized members, in a congregational church, must be able to stand in the assembly of saints on their own two feet. Which has implications for when we baptize our believing children.
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Jesus Poured Out His Joy for You

Joe Rigney
Jesus Poured Out His Joy for You

In your presence is fullness of joy and at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Psalm 16:11

Have you ever stopped to consider that the reason Psalm 16:11 is true for you is because it was first true for Jesus?

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The Cravings Beneath Your Conflict

Joe Rigney
The Cravings Beneath Your Conflict
Mimetic desire means wanting something because someone else wants it first. When the object that we both desire can be shared between us, it produces friendship and camaraderie. When only one of us can possess the object, it inevitably produces envy, rivalry, and conflict.
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He Descended into Hell?

Joe Rigney
He Descended into Hell?
Where was Jesus’s human spirit after his death? His body was in Joseph’s tomb, but where did the souls of the righteous wait before the ascended Christ pioneered the path to heaven?
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Envy and Rivalry in Ministry

Joe Rigney
Envy and Rivalry in Ministry

And behold, I saw a white horse. Its rider’s name was Success, and Envy followed him.

Envy is a movement killer. And if you ask me, it is probably the fundamental danger facing the Young, Restless, and Reformed movement in…

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Christmas and the Things of Earth

Joe Rigney
Christmas and the Things of Earth
This is what the Incarnation is all about: God restoring to us the ability to see him, to hear him, to know him, to enjoy him everywhere.
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What’s in a Name?

Joe Rigney
What’s in a Name?
The Scriptures are a gold mine of life and wisdom. But acquiring this gold requires labor and effort. We must look and look and look again until we see what’s there. We must pay attention to those little connecting words that link one statement to the next.
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To Name the World

Joe Rigney
To Name the World
We don’t think about the mysterious power of speech enough. But words matter. The world was established by the word of the living God, by the God who is himself the Word. This same God has created us in his image and given us the awesome and wondrous gift of speech.
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Putting on the Brave Face

Joe Rigney
Putting on the Brave Face

Coaching tee ball is hard. And not just because it’s like herding a pack of wet cats. Or because five-year-olds generally prefer digging in the dirt to fielding grounders. Or because twenty minutes in, the main thing on half of…

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When Envy Turns Deadly

Joe Rigney
When Envy Turns Deadly

Holy Week is a wonderful time for meditation and reflection. In addition to prayerfully considering the actions of Jesus in his triumphal entry and his temple cleansing and cursing, it’s worth reflecting on the actions of some of the other…

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When Laughter Is An Act of Defiance

Joe Rigney

When you finally get the news, you hope you’ll be ready. You never know until the moment arrives, until you’re finally confronted with the long-awaited reality.

A few weeks ago, my mom called to tell me that my father’s long…

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Be the Smile of God to Your Children

Joe Rigney

He’s a squirmy one, he is. If I don’t watch him, he’ll wriggle off the bed. But he doesn’t want to. He’s enjoying the tickle fight too much. I can’t blame him. Those giggles make this father’s heart want to…

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Recovering the Lost Art of Chivalry

Joe Rigney

They say that chivalry is dead, that the medieval ideal of the humble knight is laid low in the dust. They were saying the same in C.S. Lewis’s day. And Lewis, rather than lamenting the loss of chivalry, sought to…

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Envy Hunts in a Pack

Joe Rigney

Picture your bathroom. Now picture your toilet. Now, you know that space behind the toilet, the disgusting place where nobody goes? The place that, if you should happen to drop your toothbrush, it means that you’ll just have to buy…

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Why Envy Is a Danger for the YRR

Joe Rigney

And behold, I saw a white horse. Its rider’s name was Success, and Envy followed him.

Envy is a movement killer. And if you ask me, it is probably the fundamental danger facing the modest movement called Young, Restless Reformed

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‘Les Misérables’ and the Law of God

Joe Rigney

Victor Hugo’s Les Misérables is again a topic of conversation, and for good reason.

Christians, in particular, have rightly celebrated the portrayal of the beauty of mercy and grace in this moving 150-year-old tale. Most of the theological analyses have…

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The Story-Teller Who Entered In

Joe Rigney

God is an Author. This world is his story. We are his characters.

I first heard of the analogy sitting in a college philosophy class, and I’ve used it ever since. I find it personally fruitful and pastorally helpful in…

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So Where Was God?

Joe Rigney

The question is always the same. Where was God?

After the initial shock and horror subsides, after the news crews go home, we’re always left with the same question: So where was he?

Did he know ahead of time what…

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Confronting the Problem(s) of Evil

Joe Rigney

Introduction

Where was God?

The question is always the same.

After the initial shock and horror subsides, after the news crews go home, we're always left with the same question: Where was God? 

Did he know it was going to…

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Psalm 111: Delighting in the Works of God

Joe Rigney

Psalm 111:2 reminds us of a fundamental principle: Delight leads to study. A Lover can recall every feature of his Beloved’s face. A mother knows every dimple, hair, and birthmark on her baby’s body. When we recognize something as full…

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To See the World As It Really Is: C. S. Lewis on Education

Joe Rigney

Having examined the form of education that Lewis rejects, we turn now to a brief summation of his own view. The following tenets are not the whole of Lewis’s educational paradigm, but instead form some of the nonnegotiables that Lewis…

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Where Do We Find Jesus in the Old Testament?

Joe Rigney

For me, one of the most exciting elements of Scripture is its use of typology. Put simply,

[Typology is] the idea that persons (e.g., Moses), events (e.g., the exodus), and institutions (e.g., the temple) can — in the plan of…

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C. S. Lewis vs. Modern Education (Part 2)

Joe Rigney

We’ve seen, in Part 1, that Lewis’s critique of modern education begins by highlighting the marginalization of value statements, the separation of fact and value, and the creation of men without chests. However, Lewis is not merely lamenting the…

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C. S. Lewis vs. Modern Education (Part 1)

Joe Rigney

Part of my goal in writing these posts is to commend the Narnian stories as a component of Christian discipleship. In doing so, I’m not merely contending that we can read them profitably as Christians, but that C. S. Lewis…

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