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Archive for October, 2018

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In our worship service yesterday, we sang Stuart Townsend and Keith Getty’s song “In Christ Alone.” It’s a song I think is destined to become a classic – the church will be singing it four hundred years from now, in other words. It’s theologically sound and weighty, as well as musically  excellent.

In Christ alone my hope is found,
He is my light, my strength, my song;
This Cornerstone, this solid Ground,
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm.
What heights of love, what depths of peace,
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease!
My Comforter, my All in All,
Here in the love of Christ I stand. 

In Christ alone! – who took on flesh,
Fullness of God in helpless babe.
This gift of love and righteousness,
Scorned by the ones He came to save:
Till on that cross as Jesus died,
The wrath of God was satisfied –
For every sin on Him was laid;
Here in the death of Christ I live. 

There in the ground His body lay,
Light of the world by darkness slain:
Then bursting forth in glorious day
Up from the grave He rose again!
And as He stands in victory
Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me,
For I am His and He is mine –
Bought with the precious blood of Christ. 

No guilt in life, no fear in death,
This is the power of Christ in me;
From life’s first cry to final breath,
Jesus commands my destiny.
No power of hell, no scheme of man,
Can ever pluck me from His hand:
Till He returns or calls me home,
Here in the power of Christ I’ll stand. 

Stuart Townend & Keith Getty Copyright © 2001 Thankyou Music (Adm. by CapitolCMGPublishing.com excl. UK & Europe, adm. by Integrity Music, part of the David C Cook family, songs@integritymusic.com) 

It’s my anthem because it reflects my thinking as a Christian. It’s who I am based on what the Lord Jesus Christ has done for me and in me. To Him be all the glory!

It’s our anthem as the church of Jesus Christ for the very same reason. It’s who we are based on what He’s done for us and in us. In Him alone we live and stand. To Him be the glory!

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Well-Driven Nails

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“The words of wise men are like goads, and masters of these collections are like well-driven nails; they are given by one Shepherd” (Ecclesiastes 12:11).

Here are a few recent articles that I’ve enjoyed and have made me think.

“Your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit” (1 For. 6:19) is a verse taken out of context on a regular basis. Peter Krol, at knowableword.com, provides an excellent example of interpreting a verse within its context. It may mean something different than you think. You can read it here.

Michael Kruger reviews Andy Stanley’s latest book here. Kruger makes the point very clearly that we cannot “unhitch” from the Old Testament and remain faithful to God. In my opinion, we should unhitch from Andy Stanley – he’s on a dangerous trajectory.

According to Karl Vaters, “How do we make more disciples?” is a better question to ask than “How do we make our churches bigger?” If a church focuses on making disciples, rather than getting more people in the pews (or chairs), they’ll do better in the long run. You can read it here.

Biblical elders are vital to the church. Costi Hinn explains why in this article. Good and godly men are are a gift to the church from God.

Does the Reformation still matter? Even though it officially began 501 years ago, the truths of the Reformation are as important as ever. Michael Reeves has a good explanation. It’s a good read, too.

Enjoy!

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“Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!” (Romans 11:33)

Wisdom can be defined as “knowing the best goal and the most effective way to achieve that goal” (hat tip to J.I. Packer). God is wise – the embodiment of wisdom. In fact, His wisdom is perfect, holy, and righteous. He knows which goals are best as well as the most effective ways to achieve them. We can absolutely count on that.

I’m convinced that we will fully appreciate the wisdom of God only when we are in His presence. Then, and only then, will we understand what God has done and why He has done it. Thankfully, we will see that everything God has done was wise – He knew the best goals for us and He knew the most effective ways to bring them about. We’ll say, with all praise to God, “Lord, You did what was best for me (even though I didn’t like it at the time and wanted You to take it away), and the way You did it was the most effective possible – it couldn’t have happened any other way! You knew exactly what You were doing, Lord!”

May we pray for wisdom from the God who is wisdom!

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When we talk about evangelism or how people get saved, the inevitable question is asked: “Why doesn’t God save everyone?” He certainly could do that if it was His desire. The better question, however, is “Why does God save anybody?” He’s under no obligation to save any of us. Because of our sin and sinfulness, we deserve His wrath and not His blessings. God’s grace and mercy alone are the driving motivation behind His choice to save some from His wrath. We should be grateful that God chose to save anyone at all, including us!

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In the process of looking through a box of papers (I was trying to fond something to use in one of my classes), I ran across an article by Wayne Mack called “The Bible’s Answer to the Question: “What is A Christian?”

In short, here is his answer:

  • The Bible declares that a Christian is a person who has been radically changed by the power of God.
  • The Bible declares that a Christian is a person who has become and is becoming increasingly aware of his own unworthiness in the sight of God.
  • The Bible declares that a Christian is a person who believes that Jesus Christ is God manifested in the flesh and the only Savior and substitute of sinners.
  • The Bible declares that a Christian is a person who has repented of his sins and believed on the Lord Jesus Christ.

Mack’s use of Scripture in answering the question is especially important. If we were to ask ten people “What is a Christian?”, we’d most likely get five or six different answers, he says. The only answer that ultimately matters is God’s, and we find it in His Word.

So, using the Bible’s definition, are you a Christian?

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