The Not-Yet Transfigured Jesus

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Matthew 17 provides an interesting string of events in Jesus’s life on earth. The first event Jesus takes Peter, James, and John with Him and transfigures into His glorified state. Witnessing this was memorizing. Peter offers to commemorate this event with three shrines, one for Elijah, Moses, and Jesus. Afterwards, Jesus comes down from the mountain and encounters a man whose wants mercy and help for his demon possessed child. The stories should be familiar among all of us. But I fear, the message conveyed by this chapter often loses Matthew’s message. These events communicate an important truth. Keeping with Dr.… Continue reading

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Implications or Applications?: Preaching Biblical Narratives

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Some preachers produce abundant applications (or, implications?) for their congregations from biblical narratives, whether they are Old Testament historical narratives like Judges 4 or New Testament Gospel narratives like Mark 3. Other preachers insist they should offer only theological and practical implications. Still others refuse to recognize any implications or applications from Scripture narratives. They declare, “Biblical narrative is only descriptive, not prescriptive.” Which practice is best? Which practice is legitimate and in keeping with sound biblical interpretation?

New Testament Teaching

No matter what the topic, one should always begin with the Scriptures themselves. What does the Word of God teach?… Continue reading

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Is Mockery Compatible with The Great Commision?

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I try never to get in online arguments. I don’t think they are a good witness, I don’t think they are productive and I don’t think they change anyone’s mind. In other words, I think they are counterproductive.  (I readily admit that I am not perfect in this, but I’m trying. I’ve committed Proverbs 26:17 to memory and to heart.)  So many times I won’t engage in debate, but make a general statement that is directed at no one in particular that I believe to biblical wisdom.

This is what I was doing when I tweeted what I thought was an exceedingly non-controversial statement “Fulfilling the great commission and mocking the lost are mutually exclusive activities.” But apparently, I was wrong, according to the internet, Stephen was stoned for mocking unbelievers, Paul mocked unbelievers during his Aeropagus address, and Jesus was a regular mocker of unbelievers during his earthly ministry.  … Continue reading

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Biblical Genealogies: A Sample Meditation

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Our previous blog post (March 2) discussed the purposes for biblical genealogies. Now, please read the genealogy found in 1 Chronicles 1:17–27,

    17 The sons of Shem: Elam, Asshur, Arpachshad, Lud, and Aram. And the sons of Aram: Uz, Hul, Gether, and Meshech. 18 Arpachshad fathered Shelah, and Shelah fathered Eber. 19 To Eber were born two sons: the name of the one was Peleg (for in his days the earth was divided), and his brother’s name was Joktan. 20 Joktan fathered Almodad, Sheleph, Hazarmaveth, Jerah, 21 Hadoram, Uzal, Diklah, 22 Obal, Abimael, Sheba, 23 Ophir, Havilah, and Jobab; all these were the sons of Joktan.

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Lessons from Ruth

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All of last semester, I had the privilege of walking my youth through the book of Ruth. It is a short story, but in it are simple and profound truths. Diving deep into its contents you will find themes of working faith, repentance, kindness, covenant faithfulness, loyalty, redemption, modesty, and integrity. In each of these, you will find encouragement for your soul and blessing to live the life of a godly man or woman.

Last Wednesday, I gave my students some concluding truths from the book of Ruth that I would like to share with you today.

God Works in the Ordinary, So Be Ordinary.Continue reading

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