If you have been around Christian circles for any length of time you have no doubt been admonished at some point “you have to redeem the time” meaning that you need to quit loafing and get busy. The days are evil, in other words, time is short and life is fleeting, so get to work. You may have read this, you may have heard this from the pulpit, you may have had someone tell you this in private, you may even have said it to yourself (or someone else). But I’m sorry to say, if you think Ephesians 5:16 is about industriousness and time management, You’re Using It Wrong!… Continue reading
Note: This is the conclusion to a four part series addressing the practice of Church Discipline over the course of the life of the Church. The previous posts may be accessed in order here, here, and here.
Perhaps one of the most significant changes in the landscape of the Protestant Reformation by the time of the 19th century was the various expressions of the faith which had come into their own. For example, the Baptists had grown from the Anabaptists and English Separatists of the Continental as well as English Reformations.1 These early Baptists held that church discipline was a practice necessary within a redeemed community and applied the practice rigorously in the New World which makes them a good starting place for examining the practice of church discipline and restoration in the contemporary church.… Continue reading
The church in New England is hurting, and unreached New Englanders are dying. In New Hampshire—my home state—it is estimated that less than 2% of the population are professing believers; a number which the International Missions Board considers to be “an unreached people group”. With a total population of 1.3 million, that means there are only 26,000 Christians in the Granite State. The other states are not in much better shape. However, it was not always this way.
Two hundred years ago, New England was the center for Christian ministry and learning, as well as the launch point for global missions.… Continue reading
Have you ever been reading through the Old Testament and stopped to ask, how does this affect me? Yeah, me too so recently I took the opportunity to consider a pronouncement Israel made to his sons while on his deathbed recorded in Genesis 49. What I would like to do for you today is provide some background material related to the verses 8-12 and then turn very quickly to a couple of ways you might apply the information to your own walk. In other words we are going to be talking about application of the Bible to your life!
Turning focus specifically to Genesis 49:8-12, addressing Judah, the first observation: this section turns toward the future.… Continue reading
“Come and listen to a story ‘bout a man named Jed,…”1 Well, not really; rather come and read a story about God’s grace and how it is visible in the history of my local church. By the way, I just want to go on record up front as saying that my local church is the absolute best church anywhere. I know you may disagree and frankly I hope you do because I really hope you think your local church is the best church anywhere!