A few weeks ago we canceled Sunday worship at PBC. I absolutely hated doing it. We canceled because of weather, and I was raised to think that weather has no relationship to what must be done. Furthermore the amount of snow we got would have been characterized as an invalid excuse to be late for work amount of snow in Colorado, where I spent all of my adult life prior to moving to L.A. for seminary. It was hard, others didn’t like it, and it discolored to whole week.… Continue reading
In late November of last year, I wrapped up what turned out to be a two-year and two-month study of the book of Romans; a letter that many students of the Bible have regarded as the Apostle Paul’s magnum opus and one that a particular pastor even calls “the greatest letter ever written.” (His words, not mine. Given that I’m just not sure how to square those words with the plenary inspiration of the Bible, I’d rather call Romans “one of the greatest letters ever written.” But I digress.)
After spending over two solid years in a single biblical book, it can become easy to lose sight of the forest for the trees. It was for that reason that I decided to cap off our study of Romans with a simple outline that I hoped the folks at our church could store away in their minds for further meditation upon the truths we explored in our study. Some have shared that this outline was helpful to them, so I thought it may be worth passing on to you.… Continue reading
Every one of us has presuppositions and those presuppositions exist in our thinking all the time. The word presupposition derives from the verb “presuppose,” meaning, “to suppose or assume beforehand; take for granted in advance” (see dictionary.com).
Recently the debate over the “Wall” in America turned to interesting discourse. ***Please note, I am not making any commentary on whether or not there should be a wall *** But, it revealed presuppositions. Some people said, “Trump is holding America hostage over this wall.” This is a reference to him not signing the budget failing to include the “wall” funding. However, note, this is rhetoric that presupposes there should be no wall built and he should “work with Pelosi.” This discourse reveals their presupposition.… Continue reading
I pastor a small church in the Northern Virginia town of Haymarket. It is an insanely financially prosperous area. The average household income in our zip code is north of $150K a year. Everything around here is shiny, upscale and new (unless of course it’s historical). Even the side walk in town is new, they tore up the perfectly good (and seemingly not very old) sidewalk along the main street to install a brand new and more aesthetically pleasing red brick walkway. I grew up on the Northside of Pittsburgh, and even though we moved to a small apartment “out where the rich people lived” when I was in high school, none of this is familiar.… Continue reading
Before the holiday season (Thanksgiving and Christmas), I began a series of blogs concerning self-control. Once the holidays hit, I was doing what was necessary to keep my head afloat with ministry (discipleship and shepherding) and family (my father-in-law found out he had cancer in his jaw and we spent much of December with him in the hospital, post-surgery). All of this has now died down to a normal roar and I can now finish this self-control series. Thank you for your patience.
Let me summarize what we have seen: in the first post we looked at self-control’s definition. Without a proper definition, we cannot know if what we are doing or pursuing is God’s design.… Continue reading