Why did God create man with the ability to sin? I suspect this is a question that you have asked at some point in your life. I know I have. It is a variation of the age-old “problem of evil.” Is there an answer to this question? And how might it apply to other kinds of God-ward questions beginning with “why”?
In his Institutes of the Christian Religion, John Calvin gives a very good two-part answer to the question of why God made man with the ability to sin. I thought I’d pass it on to you in this post, as I have found it helpful, and I believe it is relevant to the other why questions of life.… Continue reading
About six months ago, I stopped wearing a tie when I preach (at least at my home church). It was an intentional, considered decision. One that I made prayerfully with reverence and out of love for God and the people and church that I am privileged to serve. For me I feel that the most reverent thing I can do is not wear a tie when I preach.
Let me explain. The church I serve was recently seriously injured by someone who sought and was admitted into leadership, all the while (over a period of several years) expertly concealing that he functionally rejected sola scriptura in favor of “capital F” Fundamentalism.… Continue reading
There is a well-known song from my childhood from the TV show “Sesame Street,” in which 4-objects would be shown on the screen—3 being the same and 1 being different, like 3 shoes and a hat. The narrator would then sing …
“One of these things is not like the other. One of these doesn’t belong. Can you tell which thing is not like the other, By the time I finish this song.”
As a 3-6 year old, this was very exciting, and I always guessed perfectly before the end of the song (my mom always said I was a smart child, haha 🙂 ).… Continue reading
Thanksgiving occurs every day and has since creation itself. Setting aside one special day as our American Thanksgiving merely formalizes a national observance. Unfortunately, many people merely use the time as a means of feasting and celebrating without giving true thanksgiving and praise to the Creator Himself. In order to expand true thanksgiving within any group (as small as one’s family or as great as one’s community), at least one person of true faith must call others to the highest giving of thanks there can ever be: offering heartfelt praise and worship to the Lord of heaven and earth.
Universal Call to Giving Thanks Based on a Universal Cause
One of the most well known of psalms closes by focusing on the universal cause for giving thanks to the Creator and King of all creation.… Continue reading
Our church is in a very odd place; nearly five years after originally being planted, we are essentially in the process of replanting the church. One of the great oddities of our area is that it is very transient, people move in and out of the area frequently. In fact, I am told by several pastors who have been in this area 20 years or more, that a church needs to grow 15%-30% a year on average to keep pace with shrinkage from families moving away.
And last year we were hit especially hard, with roughly 3/4 of the church moving away. … Continue reading