Biblical Theology and Church Picnics

Michael Johnson
Biblical Theology and Church Picnics

Early on in Piper’s pastorate, he articulated some theological reasons for having church picnics:

If picnics don’t have to do with God we may as well close up shop. Eitherallwe do has to do with God or he is not God. “Whether you eat or drink, orwhateveryou do (like picnics), doallto the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31).

Here are his main points:

Meeting as a church out-of-doors is an affirmation and celebration of God as creator of the world;

Informal togetherness,... Continue Reading

Four Ways We Forget the Lord

Josh Etter
Four Ways We Forget the Lord

David Powlison has written that "the only way we ever sin is by suppressing God, by forgetting, by tuning out his voice, switching channels, and listening to other voices. When you actually remember, you actually change. In fact, remembering is the first change."

Here are four examples from the Bible of how we actively forget God:

  1. By forgetting God's past works of salvation: "then take care lest you forget the Lord, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of... Continue Reading

Hearing with Faith on Sunday

Jonathan Parnell
Hearing with Faith on Sunday

Charles Spurgeon writes,

. . . the real reason why God's people do not feed under a gospel ministry, is, because they have not faith. If you believed, if you did but hear one promise, that would be enough; if you only heard one good thing from the pulpit here would be food for your soul, for it is not the quantity we hear, but the quantity we believe, that does us good—it is that which we receive into our hearts with true and lively faith, that is our profit (excerpted from "The... Continue Reading

12 Ways to Glorify God at Work

Josh Etter
12 Ways to Glorify God at Work

Mark Twain once said, "Work is a necessary evil to be avoided."Although there may be days when we feel like he got it right, we know God has ordained work as a stewardship of his created world (Genesis 1:28; 2:15). He has designed work for his glory and our good. But how might we glorify God at work? This list is not exhaustive, but here's at least 12 ways —

1. Believe that all legitimate work is holy or unholy before God based on our faith, not the nature of the work itself.

... Continue Reading

What Tone Should Preachers Aim At?

John Piper
What Tone Should Preachers Aim At?

Phillips Brooks who died in 1893—and who along with Jesus, Paul, John Stott, Dick Lucas, and other preachers never married—most famously said that preaching is “truth through personality.”

This personality factor raises the question of preaching tone. What should a preacher aim at in the tone of his preaching?

By “tone” I mean the feel that it has. The spirit it emits. The emotional quality. The affectional tenor. The mood.

Personalities Are Like Faces

Every personality has a... Continue Reading

It's Rarely Romantic at the Time

Jon Bloom
It's Rarely Romantic at the Time

If you’re a romantic (and I think you should be) you love the book of Ruth.

This short story almost seems like it was made for film. It has all the components of a great romance: tragedy, loyalty, courage, virtuous love, unlikely lovers, a great obstacle, the triumphant moment, the happy ending, and the hand of Providence guiding it all. It’s a feel-good read.

But I don’t think Naomi, Ruth, and Boaz experienced it as romantic until they saw it all in retrospect.

Just think of... Continue Reading

The Origin of C. S. Lewis's Mere Christianity

Michael Johnson
The Origin of C. S. Lewis's Mere Christianity

C. S. Lewis on “mere Christianity”:

I hope no reader will suppose that “mere” Christianity is here put forward as an alternative to the creeds of the existing communions—as if a man could adopt it in preference to Congregationalism or Greek Orthodoxy or anything else.

It is more like a hall out of which doors open into several rooms. If I can bring anyone into that hall I shall have done what I attempted. But it is in the rooms, not in the hall, that there are fires... Continue Reading

Francis Chan on Making Disciples and Knowing Christ

Jonathan Parnell

In this video, Francis Chan talks about the experience of Christ's fellowship when we're out there making him known:

(Watch on Vimeo)

Here are some past saints who have felt the sufferings and joys of proclaiming Christ:

Is God Fair?

Michael Johnson
Is God Fair?

Romans 9:14-18—

What shall we say then? Is there injustice on God’s part? By no means! For he says to Moses, "I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion." So then it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God, who has mercy. For the Scripture says to Pharaoh, “For this very purpose I have raised you up, that I might show my power in you, and that my name might be proclaimed in all the earth.So then he has mercy on whomever he wills, and he... Continue Reading

God's Wisdom, Your Relationships

Paul Tripp
God's Wisdom, Your Relationships

God’s Word really does open up to us the mysteries of the universe. It really does make us wiser than we could ever be without it. And yet, having said all this, it's sad that we don’t take more advantage of this wisdom God has given us. It's sad that we don’t think his thoughts after him, that we don’t require ourselves to look at life through the lens of his revelation. It's sad that we swindle ourselves into thinking that we are wiser than we are. We're not irritated by... Continue Reading