Saturday, December 12, 2015

Saturday Lagniappe: Seventeen Articles and Three Videos

God’s Secret Work of Election

If God had waited for me to seek after him, he would still be waiting. No one seeks God (Romans 3:11). No one! Not even you. By nature we run from God. If we seek him, it is only because he has taken the initiative to seek us. I came to Christ because his grace first came to me. Read more

Happy Holidays, Open Doors and the Gospel

We love stories with these themes because in the end true life promises these very things in Christ. The good news of the holiday season isn't ultimately found in sweet, fictional classics that comfort us for a few hours. The grand story of Christmas is that Immanuel came to bring a people to himself and to give them a place free from sin to exult in his all-satisfying love! Before Christ we were "children of wrath" whose only hope of "belonging" was to the prince of darkness (Eph. 2:3). Isolation, rejection, and spiritual poverty were our destiny. We deserved nothing less. But our gracious God sent his Son to die for us, his enemies, so we might be adopted into his family. Read more

The Suburbs of Hell

The real horror, however, in rejecting the God who is there, who shouts his glorious reality in every sunrise and sunset, is that such people are in the suburbs of hell. They are on their way to perdition. Read more

7 Sentimental Lies You Might Believe

The following is a list of seven of the most egregiously assumed truth-claims in popular culture today, with a biblical check for each one. Read more

5 Ultimate Responsibilities of Leadership

Frantic leaders manage too much and lead too little. Doing it all only works on TV commercials and in the movies. Engage in fewer activities – behaviors that matter most. You must know what matters, before you can do it. Read more

The Cowboy and the Shepherd [Video]

This short documentary shows how Southern Seminary alumnus and Texas pastor John Powell learned how to be both a cowboy and a shepherd. Discover how his theological training and his network of supporters from Southern Seminary helped equip him for rural ministry. Watch now

Ministry Shouldn’t Hurt

What to do when the church starts acting like an abusive boyfriend. Read more

King Herod, Baby Jesus, and the Charge of Lousy Exegesis

Have you ever read the New Testament and wondered if the apostles would’ve passed a contemporary hermeneutics course? Sure, they quoted and alluded to the Old Testament, but carefully considering the original context just wasn’t very high on their priority list. Or was it? Read more

The Value of Meditating Upon God’s Word

After reading Scripture, we must ask God for light to scrutinize our hearts and lives, then meditate upon the Word. Read more

Advent Rediscovered by Southern Baptists

Late preaching professor Calvin Miller once quipped to Christianity Today that many Southern Baptist churches "probably could hardly spell Advent" in the early 1990s. Not so anymore. Read more

6 Easy Ways to Undermine Your Leadership on Social Media

You probably see it every week—leaders who undercut their influence by something they’ve said or posted. Sometimes they blow it completely through one or two dumb moves. And sometimes you end up thinking “I’m not really sure I want to follow them anymore” but you’re not exactly sure why. Loss of influence can be subtle, but it’s real. And it’s so easy to do if you’re not careful. Read more

What Greg Thompson Can Teach Us About Living as Christians in Cities [Video]

Occasionally you meet somebody that shines with such virtue that you are, perhaps for the first time, made aware of your own poverty of spirit. Read more

How to Practice Biblical Hospitality

Let’s take a journey through Scripture as we paint a word portrait of biblical hospitality. Read more

Taking a Closer Look at the Holy Spirit

Had Christopher Holmes’s The Holy Spirit been available in August for the start of my theology elective on the doctrine of the Holy Spirit, it would’ve been the first reading assignment for my students. Read more

Middle Class No Longer Dominates in the U.S. [Video]

Middle class Americans now comprise less than half, or 49.9%, of the nation's population, down from 61% in 1971, according to a new Pew Research Center report. For Pew, middle class Americans live in households earning between two-thirds to two times the nation's median income. In 2014, that ranged from $41,900 to $125,600 for a three-person household. Read more
Historically the Episcopal Church in the USA and the various other Anglican entities in the United States have attracted the lion's share of their members from middle-class America. Their decline as denominations is in part the result of the decline of middle-class America and of the shift in middle-class America's attitudes toward organized religion.
Christian Response to Refugees & Muslims Discussed

Christians are missing out on chances to share Christ amid the fearful, hostile discourse on refugees and Muslims currently prevalent, a Southern Baptist religious freedom advocate said at a Capitol Hill discussion. Read more

For the Fall and Rising of Many in Israel

We are witnesses today to one of the rarest of sights, and one of the greatest encouragements to the Christian church. God is calling ministers and missionaries of the Gospel of Christ and they are responding, and they are obeying. Read more

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