All Posts (Page 32)

All Posts (Page 32)

Recent Trip to Germany, Ukraine and Romania

HeartCry Ministries (Paul Washer, Director) out of Alabama was the arranger of this ministry trip to Europe. Mack Tomlinson, a long time friend of HeartCry from Denton, Texas asked me to go along with him to preach in both Romania and Ukraine. I added a short trip to Germany and met up with Mack in Bucherest. First stop: Frankfurt, Germany. My plans included this visit at the home of the Gerd Roth family in Huttenberg-Rechtenbach, near Frankfurt all because of…

So What’s the Problem?

A well-known Christian philosopher, Francis Schaeffer, was asked this question: If you had only one hour on a train to tell someone about Christ, what would you do? He answered: I would spend forty-five minutes showing him the problem, and fifteen minutes showing him the solution. Do you have a problem? Perhaps it is not so easy for you to see. If you have good relationships, make good grades, have a family that loves you, and feel hope about the…

Strange Givers: More Outlandishness in Circulating Gods Blessings

I laughed out loud when a well known conference speaker told me that most people give just enough to make themselves miserable. I’ve always tried to be a radical giver. God stirred me up about this many years ago when reading the life of George Muller. I’ve attempted to increase my giving year by year so that a large percentage of the resources He provides come through me rather than stopping with me. An old friend of our family once…

The Bible is God’s Special Revelation

Mankind is dependent upon God for all things, even for the knowledge that God exists. Though God is under no obligation to reveal Himself, He chose to reveal Himself to mankind through creation. God reveals Himself as eternal, powerful, glorious, creative, orderly, loving, all-knowing, sovereign, and worthy of worship. By creating man in His own image, by giving him a soul, self-consciousness, the ability to reason, and a general knowledge of right and wrong, God reveals Himself as personal, holy,…

The Church That Disciplines

Let me tell you why church discipline is important to me. A number of years ago my minister father left my mother after an adulterous affair with his secretary. I’m telling this story with his permission. My father is now 90 years old. This turn of events jarred us. We’ve not seen divorce often in our extended family. All of us are believers, and most of us are in the ministry, for four generations. While my father was working as…

The House Church Way of Life

I still appreciate the institutional church. I’ve spent most of my life in such churches, leading them, speaking to them, attempting to nurture believers in them. I have most of my memories of God’s work in my life related to them. Almost every church I speak to today is an institutional one. I haven’t given up on this model, but I think I have discovered something far better for meeting my expectations of church life and my compelling interests as…

What Does Scripture Teach about the Presence of Christ in the Lord’s Supper

The issue of the presence of Christ in the elements of the Lord’s Supper has divided Christians for more than ten centuries.1 I will (1) examine the three primary views that have emerged (the Roman Catholic view, the Lutheran view, and the view of the rest of Protestantism) and (2) defend a version of the view of the rest of Protestantism from Scripture. Three Views What do the words, “This is My body” (Matt 26:26) mean? Three distinct answers to…

Worth A Lot of Sparrows

Are not five sparrows sold for two cents? And yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear; you are worth more than many sparrows. Luke 12:6-7 At two cents per five sparrows, one dollar’s worth would buy two hundred and fifty of them. Imagine that! I once saw a stack of chicken heads in a Bolivian marketplace numbering about that many, all staring one way, eyes…

Seeking Miraculous Healings: Musings and Cautions

“While John performed no sign, yet everything John said about this man [Christ] was true” (John 10:41). Could anyone doubt that God was powerfully at work through the life of John the Baptist? Jesus said there was none like him (Matt. 11:11) and assigned him a strategic place of importance in the unfolding history of redemption. Like many great saints to follow, he did not do any miracles. Should we consider the miraculous essential to our Christianity? Yes, of course,…

Should I Say More About Meeting in Homes?

I have only six and a half years of experience with a house church model. My inexperience may disqualify me from saying much. Though I don’t want to get older any more quickly, I am anxious to have years of experience so as to speak more convincingly about this concept. I also do not in any way wish to imply that we are experiencing the absolute “right method,” or that, in fact, other meeting patterns could not be even more…

Thoughts on Improving Baptisms

Since water baptism is so important to the churches, I want to put forward a few ideas that may help churches make more of this important symbolic act. What I’m suggesting is in the way of pastoral advice, not doctrine. You can take or leave these ideas, but in my own experience and through information received from many pastors over the years, these suggestions could make this experience much more memorable and effective. Most of these suggestions will apply to…

Vacation Bible School and the Doctrine of Hell

Vacation Bible School (VBS) was nearly upon us, and the children’s ministry workers had gathered for a final preparatory meeting. Anticipation filled the room as we eagerly awaited the opportunity to minister to the precious little souls that the Lord would send our way. Thankfully, we would be using curriculum that faithfully proclaimed the Gospel.  The meeting was progressing well until a “pillar” in the church suggested that we “avoid speaking about hell and judgment and those types of things…