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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How to Approach a Wolf: Part 2

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angry_wolfTwo weeks ago I introduced the topic, “How to Approach a Wolf,” having come right off the Strange Fire Conference. One of the main criticisms was that these kinds of conferences are unhealthy for the church and only sow disunity. I argued that I disagreed, but more than just disagreeing, I think there’s actually a biblical mandate for the pastor to confront error. If you missed that post, go back and read it, because it will be difficult to understand the context of this post without it. In fact, Tim Challies, a friend of Grace Church, and an established blogger, took the time to compile the most common criticisms of the Conference, and allowed Pastor John to respond to them in a Q&A type format.… Continue reading

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How to Approach a Wolf: Part 1

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not-to-do-listThere are certain things you should never do. Some such things might be obvious, like don’t stick your head in a lion’s mouth, or perhaps less obvious, like walking and texting at the same time (believe it or not, you can get fined for this in Los Angeles County). I remember growing up, being seven years older than my brother, I had the physical advantage to easily pin him down while holding his hands above his head with one hand, and tickling him mercilessly with the other. Completely helpless, he’d often do the only thing he could do in retaliation – spit.… Continue reading

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