Tag Archives: church
One pro-life outlet that I follow regularly recently did a look back and their top 10 headlines from 2016 and it’s no surprise that 40% of those headlines involved political candidates and the election. Take a look at the list of headlines below and you will realize how broad the issue of life is in our culture. It involves the unborn, the ill, and the aged. The issue of life stretches from the White House to the Church house. This is an issue that touches every aspect of our life and culture and continues to leave a lasting impression on us all.
You probably saw the article a couple of weeks ago decrying the fact that Chip and Joanna Gaines attend a church where they teach that marriage is the union of one man and one woman. The now infamous hit piece by BuzzFeed lamented that this very popular TV couple are conservative, Christian Americans that believe in traditional marriage.
This personal attack on the Gaines has much to teach us about the new reality we live in as part of the sexual and moral revolution.
If you’re not familiar with the story, here’s a short recap from a recent article:
One of the things I’ve appreciated about reformed churches and theology is their willingness to keep “the main things the main thing.” They do not argue over non-essentials. They focus on the Gospel and its power to change people’s lives and allow freedom on non-essentials. That’s precisely what the scriptures call us to. We are not to tout “the traditions of man as though they are doctrine” (Matt. 7:7-13) as the Pharisees did. And this group, unlike any other I’ve known, emphasizes and lives this out. The Baptist churches I’ve known are so legalistic that if you disagree on a non-essential you are labeled a heretic of sorts. “How dare you not adhere to a pre-millennial, pre-tribulation view of the rapture. You’re wrong!” Well, the truth is that regardless of what you believe about the rapture, it doesn’t change whether you are a Christian. So, in truth, it doesn’t matter. Sure, it’s good to know what you believe and understand it. But having a “proper” view of the rapture doesn’t save you, or un-save you. So if someone wants to believe that there’s no literal 7-year tribulation, that’s ok, we are still brothers in Christ and can fellowship and worship under the same roof.
The articles I read criticizing reformed theology badly misrepresents those that adhere to this biblically based theological understanding. There is so much misinformation, and disinformation that it shows a clear lack of understanding of reformed theology and the people that claim it. It also does nothing to further the Gospel. It propagates false myths about Calvinism and creates division rather than unity around Christ. As Christians, we must be about creating unity around Christ and the Gospel over our personal differences over non-essential issues. It’s interesting to me that there is an abundance of articles by Baptists that “warn” people about Calvinism/Reformed Theology but you would be hard pressed to find a single article by a Calvinist warning people about Baptists. I find this curious as I consider keeping the main thing the main thing. Do I believe Baptists are wrong on some things, even important things? Yes. Am I going to denigrate them or warn people about them? Nope. Because I know that Baptists get the Gospel right, and that’s the main thing. So I can let go of the non-essentials and support Baptists in sharing the Gospel.
I’ve grown up in the Baptist church my entire life. I spent my entire ministry in Baptist churches. I have a Master’s degree in theology from a Baptist school. I know Baptist theology more than most due to my life-long desire to study and grow in my theological understanding. And I can say without reservation that I have found more Gospel focus, theological depth, mission’s emphasis, and Great-Commission minded people within reformed theology in the last several years than I have in the Baptist church in my entire life.
This reality of my experience makes the mischaracterization of reformed theology troubling as it reveals most people don’t know enough about reformed theology to make an accurate objection. It also reveals that the persistent myths and false accusations perpetrated against reformed theology are done in error.
Some of the myths and false accusations around reformed theology are:
Last week I posted a few resources for Christian parents to help in raising their kids in the “fear and admonition of the Lord.” I found those resources very helpful for me, personally, as I seek to raise my kids in the Gospel. So, when I came across more resources to help with this holy task, I wanted to share them as well.
Take a look at some of the articles below to learn more about cultivating the Gospel in your kids, the importance of your presence, and how to avoid “provoking your children to wrath.” There’s even a couple of videos at the end of the list that I think are very helpful (the first video is a beautiful animated YouTube song depicting the Gospel.) I hope these are a blessing and encouragement to you as you seek to impart your faith to your children.
10 Tips for Leading Kids to Christ
“This is definitely not an article about “success, and how we have achieved it.” Rather, as the old adage goes, we are beggars telling other beggars where we have found some bread. If you are seeking to influence little ones toward Christ, you might find these ten tips helpful…
Recently, LifeWay Research and Ligonier Ministries surveyed 3000 adults concerning the state of theology in America. The results are a glaring red flag that proves how uninformed and uneducated Americans are concerning theological issues. The researchers only identified about 20% of those they surveyed as evangelicals; many other respondents identified themselves as evangelical. That in itself is a problem.
(See the chart below to view the top 12 questions and answers from the survey.)
As a parent that is deeply committee to imparting my faith to my children, I am always looking for resources to help. I am often overwhelmed by the task of sharing my faith with my kids, teaching them, and training them. I fail daily and need the wise counsel of those who have gone before me.
With that in mind, the following list is some helpful resources for everything from praying for your kids to taking them to church. There’s insight on answering kids’ biblical questions and tips for raising Godly kids. And, at the end is a list of books and other resources that can provide further support in your task as a parent of bringing the Gospel to your children. I hope this is a helpful list of resources that provide encouragement and support for you, mom and dad.
Why Require Unregenerate Children to Act Like They’re Good?
“Here are at least three reasons why Christian parents should require their small children (regenerate or unregenerate) to behave in ways that conform externally to God’s revealed will. I say “small children” because as a child gets older, there are certain external conformities to God’s revealed will that should be required and others that should not. It seems to me, for example, while parents should require drug-free, respectful decency from a 15-year-old, it would do little good to require an unbelieving and indifferent 15-year-old to read his Bible every day. But it would be wise to require that of a 6-year-old, while doing all we can to help him enjoy it and see the benefit in it.”
Our entire culture is designed to attract us to something and sell something to us. Corporations spend billions of dollars to learn exactly the right words to make you buy their product. Marketing and advertising is a billion dollar industry centered around attracting and selling. From television, to the Internet, to billboards, you can’t go an hour without seeing an ad for something. When the church engages in these tactics, it cheapens grace in favor of enticements.
The church is the most expensive purchase in all of history. The bible tells us that Jesus bought the church “with His own blood” (Acts 20:28). The grace that has been poured out on the body of Christ is priceless. When we seek to entice people through the doors of our church with cheap attractions (like door prizes), we cheapen that priceless grace and the Gospel of Jesus.
I posted the church’s sign on social media with my encouragement for people to run far away from such a church. That started a conversation with friends from all over about the intentions of the church and whether having door prizes was a good idea. Some viewed this as a good way to “attract” people to church so they could hear the Gospel. The thought was, get them in the doors and share Jesus with them. If they get saved then it was worth it. The opposing thought was that this church was cheapening grace and the Gospel with enticements.