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Showing posts from March, 2011

The Making of a Galaxy

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How they give us those awe-provoking photos:

Use of edgy material to promote church

Why should ministers take care with the words they use?

Consider what Christ had to say to the Pharisees in Mt 12:34–37:
You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak, for by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.Among the requirements of those who oversee God's people are "above reproach," "self-controlled," "respectable," and "must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace" (1 Tm 3:1–7).

None of this is true of the man who uses his pulpit for shock purposes. Yet, as A Little Leaven points out, parents are now having to explain to their children and to their lost friends why their pastor a…

PSA: An Important Message from Peter Weller

Funny Study Bible Ad

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(HT: Dan Phillips)

Kids play the darnedest games! - Islamic Edition

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(HT: Veritas Domain)Why, you ask?  Innocent games, you protest?
To be fair, the first video is from Pakistan, and the second a feature on Palestinian media.  Yet, I can't help but think that there are more similarities than differences.

Is Eternal Life Always Eternal?

John MacArthur answers.  Praise Father for your security tomorrow!

FF: Super Lifeguard Brothers

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BBC discussion: Anti-Christian discrimination in foster care

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Perhaps you heard about the UK's stance against Christians couples who want to participate in the foster care system.

Here is an excellent interview with British panelists that will give you a sense of the debate:




(HT: Dan Phillips)

SC: Audio Update

If you have not yet checked, the sessions from the Shepherds' Conference are now posted.

For those keeping track of the Pisteuo page, I've updated it with the seminar sessions.

Keep an eye out for notes in the coming days.

FF: Those Ridiculous Speed Signs

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Happy St. Patrick's Day

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Here's to hoping you come through the day alive:

FF PSA: Please drink Red Bull responsibly

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SC: Grace Advance #shepconf

Grace Advance from Grace Community Church on Vimeo.

Overview information from http://www.gracechurch.org/:
The Need for Grace AdvanceGrace Community Church has always been engaged in the effort to both provide and equip pastors for the church around the world. Over the past twenty-five years we have trained men at The Master’s Seminary for the global ministry of faithfully building the church. This emphasis has defined our church, and has been multiplied many times over as our graduates carry this same commitment to pastors and leaders around the world. Our objective has been to provide leadership for existing churches with an occasional opportunity for the establishment of new local assemblies. In recent years however, it has become obvious that the current trend is for the establishment of new churches. In forty plus years of ministry, this kind of activity stands unparalleled. As we survey the ecclesiastical landscape, the only conclusion that we can draw is that the sudden surge is…

SC: Updated Shepherds’ Conference Audio and Notes #shepconf

The 2011 stuff is not yet available, but I finally finished the updating of the 2010 stuff.  I also changed the intro to read the following:
A lot has changed at the Shepherd's Conference site since this March 2009 posting, with the current result being improved usability.  For instance, new users no longer need to create a Shepherds' Fellowship account in order to download media.   If this trend continues, I believe this post is will become obsolete.  I'm okay with that... really.  Yet, this still remains among the most popular posts on "Pisteuo," possibly because the format may be more clear to some.  As such, I am cleaning up what remained of the 2010 info and will begin the process of posting 2011. Of course, I had a bit of trouble when I first created this post in that I could not link to the audio files for 2001-09, though there are direct links to the notes. Since many messages are repeated and updated throughout the years, I have let this sit as is.  If th…

SC: Opening Day #shepconf

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From God-honoring music, preaching, and BBQ(!), we had a wonderful opening day at the Shepherds' Conference.  As always, it is amazing to see the servant-hearts in action as the international contingent of pastors come for refreshment, encouragement, and edification.

It's always a treat to see Dr. Greg Harris getting his tennis shoes polished.  And to see Dr. Snider making a bee line for the expresso cafe.

Of course, there is always the Shepherds' Shop, which afforded me an opportunity to spend the $50 gift certificates within minutes of receiving them.  Among the items I obtained was my official conference knife because, well, every shepherd needs to shear his sheep from time to time.


It was also uplifting to see the strength of the first session speaker.  Phil Johnson, who had recent back surgery and was even written out of the lineup of speakers, showed his grit and dedication by preaching a full session.

There were many other great messages for folks, but sadly, I had …

Is the LDS church unified?

Mormon missionaries will cite the number of Evangelical denominations as a sign of a false faith.  The reasoning is that if we had a true faith, we would not be so dis-unified.

That is, the assumption is that different denominations vary in great degree as to core beliefs (the nature of God, the person of Christ, man's universal need for salvation, regeneration by grace through faith, etc.).  There is much more to say about this.

However, while it's important to point out this misunderstanding, don't before gently testing the extent of that logic.  4Mormon.org posted a helpful list(HT: DefCon) demonstrating the same disunity stemming from the so-called "restored gospel:"

FOUNDED BETWEEN 1830 AND 1844 Pure Church of Christ, Wycam Clark, 1831 The Independent Church, Hoton, 1832 Church of Christ, Ezra Booth, 1836Church of Christ, Warren Parrish, 1837The Church of Jesus Christ, the Bride, The Lamb's Wife, George M. Hinkle, 1840Church of Christ, Hyrum Page, 1842Chu…

Responding to Rob Bell's deceptive claims

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I don't like using the word "deception" because I don't know Rob Bell's heart.  I think that we as Christians too often shoot ourselves in the foot with our heresy rifles.  Hey, he may well believe what he teaches in the Nooma videos and elsewhere as being sound reality.  He may well believe God honors his work.

Yet, the claims he repeats are based on distortions of reality.  They are popularized on the Internet, but not by sound scholarship.  Unfortunately, while he cites historical events, these references are robbed of context and basis in reality.  In the process, he demonstrates a complete loss of faith in the Bible, rejected any sense of Christ-centered worship, and embraced universalism.

James White explains:




He is deceived, and thus, deceiving.  How much further does he have to go before we are comfortable calling Rob Bell a false teacher?  I don't want to broad-brush, but is it time to warn young people that this is not an author and speaker to follo…

The Four Indispensable Qualities of Good Preaching

Heather and I are enjoying a wonderful evening at the 25th annual Master's Seminary spring banquet.  (Well, I hope we are, as I am writing this post a couple of weeks in advance!)  Such a heritage is found in the many godly pastors and teachers who have come out of the seminary over the years, those who have been so moved by the Spirit to be faithful to preach the Bible to people who hunger and thirst for the Word of God.

If there is an online recording after this evening I can link to, I'll post a heads up.  On the note of preaching, though, I wanted to highlight a well-worded post by Keven DeYoung.  The short of it: good preaching must have veracity, clarity, authority, and authenticity.

Amen, brother.

FF: Keeping the streets safe from bad influences

After all, we're all basically good people... right, Dr. Sproul?

A majority of professing evangelicals agree with the statement that human beings are basically good, a clear repudiation of the biblical view of human fallenness. The irony here is that while we decry the baleful influence of secular humanism on the culture, we are busy adopting secular humanism’s view of man. It is not so much that the secular culture has negotiated away the doctrine of original sin, as that the evangelical church has done so.
R. C. Sproul, Willing to Believe: The Controversy over Free Will
(Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 1997), 20. I'm an optimist by nature, but theology and real life must meet.  It helps us in our dealings with Craigslist, for example.

We cannot blame the culture's eroding influence on the church if we are unwilling to adopt the Bible's authoritative declarations concerning man, sin, etc.  Nor can we blame sinners for acting like sinners in their dealings with us.