Fellowship. It’s such a rich and meaningful word in the Bible, and yet a somewhat generic catch-all term in the vernacular of modern Christians. What is fellowship? In Scripture, fellowship is a word used to describe the common life that Christians enjoy with one another, as those who have been brought into a reconciled relationship with God through Christ by grace. Entire books have been written to flesh out this one word, given the depth and breadth of its use in the Bible.
If we were to do a study together of the concept (not just the word itself) of fellowship in the NT – at least as it concerns fellowship between Christians – we would see five major themes emerge from that study. … Continue reading
I am convinced that one of the sweetest and most valuable expressions of God’s grace in the life of a Christian is that of good, godly, truthful friends. The second wisest man ever to have lived seemed to agree when he said: The sweetness of a friend comes from his earnest counsel (Prov 27:9).
Some of the most beneficial conversations in my life have been the hardest conversations I have ever been a part of. On many occasions throughout my life, it has taken the honest and loving rebuke of a good, godly, and truthful friend to help me see some way that I need to change; and nearly every time, what my friends have had to point out in my life have been things I would have never seen with my own two eyes.… Continue reading
There is a simple and deadly serious command to parents, specifically to dads, found in Paul’s letter to the Colossians that I’d like to focus briefly on in today’s post. The verse is Colossians 3:21 and it reads, “Fathers, do not exasperate your children, so that they will not lose heart” (NASB).
So simple and yet so serious.
In this portion of Colossians 3, the Apostle Paul is helping Christians understand what it means to live under the Lordship of Christ in their earthly relationships, and at home in particular. In Colossians 3:17, he tells us that we are to do “everything in the name of the Lord Jesus,” and beginning in 3:18 he expands upon what he means by the word “everything.” Everything includes the things we do at home. … Continue reading
Last month by God’s grace, I reached my five-year anniversary as the preaching pastor of my local church and surpassed a decade of vocational pastoral ministry. I realize that this is not an incredibly long time and that compared to many faithful pastors, I’m still a snot-nosed kid with all kinds of things yet to learn. Yet, I actually find it astonishing that I’ve made it this far. Truly, this is all of grace. I say that because I’ve come to realize that being in ministry poses a myriad of threats to a man’s spiritual health.
I remember hearing it said somewhere that ministry will either make you a better man, or a far worse one. … Continue reading
Planting and waiting. That, I am learning, is the essence of biblical ministry. It is perhaps the most important lesson I have been learning over the last few years, at least as it concerns my life as a pastor.
Of all the things that I long to see happen in, around, and as a result of my ministry, I have no power whatsoever to make happen. I cannot save a single soul. I cannot make a single Christian more like Christ. I cannot cause a single saint to endure to the end of his life in faithfulness to Christ.
Beyond these things, I cannot heal a single marriage. … Continue reading