Ponder the conversion of Paul, the sovereignty of Christ, and what Paul's sins have to do with your salvation.
Paul said that God “set me apart before I was born,” and then on the Damascus road “called me by his grace” (Galatians 1:15). This means that between Paul’s birth and his call on the Damascus road he was an already-chosen but not-yet-called instrument of God (Acts 9:15; 22:14).
This means that Paul was beating and imprisoning and murdering Christians as a God-chosen, soon-to-be-made-Christian missionary.
Lord, they themselves know that in one synagogue after another I imprisoned and beat those who believed in you. And when the blood of Stephen your witness wa…
One my my continual needs for self-control comes from being the oldest of 10 children and then 35+ years of mothering. I feel very comfortable telling people what to do, speaking as if I know what’s best. Others call it bossy. My fight for self-control in this area has two parts—reminding myself who God is and then preaching that to myself.
I fight bossiness by reminding myself that God is God and I’m not. So however convinced I am of the best course for someone else, I might be wrong. (When I forget to remind myself, God graciously does it by proving me wrong.)
I must say, the older I am, the more young people there are who think I might have some wisdom. What comes most naturally is to s…
Today a year ago, my father and grandfather were reunited. William S. H. Piper and Elmer Albert Piper were both preachers and both Bible-saturated.
My father said several times to me that he felt his father could pick up and recite from memory any place in the New Testament that you started for him.
And I have several of my father’s Bibles. They are at places so densely marked they are hard to read.
It is an amazing thing what happens to a life that is utterly devoted to an objective reality outside itself. Periodically the experience is enjoyed of total self-forgetfulness in the wonder of that Other Reality.
One does not know one is having such an experience until after…
This is the 1-year anniversary of my dad's dad dying.
So I thought it would be a good day to commemorate him through this 10-minute video that was made for the pastors conference last month.
In it, my dad walks around the neighborhood and the house he grew up in and talks about the memories of his father that this brings up.
In Monday’s Wall Street Journal, Harvard Law School Professor Alan Dershowitz wrote about some Muslims' love affair with death. It raises the question of how Christian martyrdom is different. He writes:
“We are going to win, because they love life and we love death,” said Hassan Nasrallah, the leader of Hezbollah. He has also said: “[E]ach of us lives his days and nights hoping more than anything to be killed for the sake of Allah.” Shortly after 9/11, Osama bin Laden told a reporter: “We love death. The U.S. loves life. That is the big difference between us.”
“The Americans love Pepsi-Cola, we love death,” explained Afghani al Qaeda operative Maulana Inyadullah. Sheik Feiz…
Since all humans are created in the image of God (Genesis 1:27), and the work of God’s law is written on every heart (Romans 2:15), and the heavens are telling the glory of God to everyone who can see (Psalm 19:1), and God has put eternity in man’s heart (Ecclesiastes 3:11), and by God’s providence every person is set to grope for God (Acts 17:27), and in God we all live and move and have our being (Acts 17:28), it is not surprising that even people without eyes to see the glory of Christ nevertheless have glimpses into the way the world really is, and then don’t know what to do with them.
Stephen Dunn is a Pulitzer Prize winning poet and not a Christian. “I think of God as a metaphor. …
In the notes that we posted from my talk last week at Resurgence I asked,
But how should we regard these errors [Wesleyanism and Arminianism] in relationship to the teaching office of the church and other institutions?
The answer I gave was not precise enough. Here is what I said:
Here’s my rule of thumb: the more responsible a person is to shape the thoughts of others about God, the less Arminianism should be tolerated. Therefore church members should not be excommunicated for this view but elders and pastors and seminary and college teachers should be expected to hold the more fully biblical view of grace.
What is not precise here is the implic…
Your life hangs on how you relate these two statements:
- “If anyone sins, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ, the Righteous” (1 John 2:1).
- “Sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you” (John 5:14).
Do you experience the first one weakening the second?
Or do you experience the first one joyfully empowering the second?
Your life hangs on your answer.
What kind of man would send his wife and 12-year-old daughter to Kenya by themselves?
The answer I wish I could give is: The kind of man who was smart enough to marry such a woman.
But, alas, when I married her I didn’t know that’s what I was getting.
So all I can answer is: A thankful man.
What about those hungry fellows who promised not to eat till they ambushed Paul?
We read about them in Acts 23:12, “When it was day, the Jews made a plot and bound themselves by an oath neither to eat nor drink till they had killed Paul.” It didn’t work. Why? Because a string of unlikely events happened.
- A boy over heard the plot.
- The boy was the son of Paul’s sister.
- The boy had the courage to go to the Roman centurion guarding Paul.
- The centurion took him seriously and brought him to the Tribune.
- The Tribune believed him and prepared “two hundred soldiers, with seventy horsemen and two hundred spearmen” to take Paul to safet…