Month: July 2007

The Centrality of the Home

My wife and I are reading “Family Driven Faith: Doing What It Takes to Raise Sons and Daughters Who Walk with God ” by Voddie Baucham. This is a result of hearing probably one of the most stirring sermons we have ever heard. If you are a parent or plan to be {well, actually, everybody should listen to this}, then you must listen to this sermon, “The Centrality of the Home” by Voddie Baucham.

Buckle up your seat-belt…

Bock on Piper’s Book on Paper

Darrell Bock weighs in on John Piper’s forthcoming book “The Future of Justification: A Response to N.T. Wright” and Piper’s dialogue with N.T. Wright on justification by faith…

A good biblical dialogue needs two good conversation partners, who work hard to understand each other and make their case biblically. Piper’s look at justification does this with a superb tone and a careful presentation of his case. He and Wright exchanged communication before this book went public. Piper appeals to the wisdom of the ages on justification, a wisdom deeply rooted in Scripture. Wright argues his approach is also deeply rooted in Scripture as seen through a fresh appreciation of the first century context of Paul’s writing, a context we too often underestimate. This dialogue is important for the church; Piper has put us in a position to hear both sides of the debate and understand what is at stake. He has served us all well by enabling the reader to be put in the place of considering what Scripture says as he or she listens to this conversation and to our God. Iron sharpens iron, and Scripture is a sword that cuts between the soul and Spirit. Be prepared to be sharpened by a careful dialogue about what justification is.

–Darrell Bock, Research Professor of NT Studies, Dallas Theological Seminary

{HT: JT}

Imparting To the Next Generation…

I am doing a Bible study on Wednesday mornings with a few of the men in leadership at the church where we are looking at the book of Judges {yes, at 6 A.M. we are tackling this book!!}. I have been reminded of the need for the next generation to “know the LORD…” {Judges 2:10} and the drastic results that occur when they do not know Him.

So, as I put the boys to bed last night {Zechariah- 8 yrs, Jamin- 5 yrs, and Asher- 20 months}, Zechariah came into our room about 10 minutes after they were to be in bed asleep. He asked if he could turn the lamp on for a few minutes. I gave him the “okay, but be quick” parental reply.

This morning I asked what he wanted to do when he turned the lamp on. He told me he wrote out a prayer. So, I will reproduce what he wrote, 8 year-old mispelled words in all. I praise God for the work that is being done in Zech’s heart:

“Dear Lord,
I pray Asher that he wood lern to live your way. and that Jamin to. and that mom and dad wood not fall away. Dear Lord I pray for all my frinds that thay wood not fall away either. and I pray for evry body that thay wood not fall away. and in Jesus name we pray amen.”

Obviously Zech needs help with spelling, but I rejoice that God is working in his life!

Let this be an encouragement for you, if you have children, to continue to plant the Word of God in their hearts and lives {Mark 4}. Here are a few prayers that I pray for my boys often:

Incline their hearts to Your Word and not to getting gain…Psalm 119:36
Hide Your Word in their hearts that they might not sin against You…Psalm 119:11
Unite their hearts to fear Your Name…Psalm 86:11
Open their eyes to see the light of the knowledge of the glory of God as it shines in the face of Jesus Christ…2nd Corinthians 4:3-6
May they love you with their heart, soul, mind, and strength…Deuteronomy 6:5
Satisfy them in the morning with Your steadfast love…Psalm 90:14

Pastoral Preaching

The Expository Thoughts blog had these thoughts on preaching:

1. Preaching great sermons should not be a cover for poor shepherding (1 Peter 5).
2. Beware of preaching that is not applied personally.
3. Beware of preaching that is not applied publicly.
4. Don’t make an idol out of a theological system especially if it prevents you from making specific conclusions about special issues in the text.
5. Preaching that encourages pure doctrine to the exclusion of pure religion is sub-christian (James 1:27).
6. Learn to preach in weakness, fear and in much trembling….the opposite is a kamikaze pride (1 Cor. 2:3).
7. Show the congregation that your preaching is dependent on the Holy Spirit (1 Cor. 2:4-5).
8. Learn to embrace anything (e.g., “thorn”) that will keep you from exalting yourself (2 Cor. 12:5-7).
9. Don’t hide behind terms like “missional” and “contextualization” in order to justify worldly desires and carnality (2 Cor. 1:12).