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Archive for the ‘worldview’ Category

sj&g

Many of us in the church have heard, or read,  a lot about “social justice” recently. Words such as “intersectionality,” “identity politics,” “white privilege,” and racism have been thrown around quite liberally.

This Leftist ideology (which some call Cultural Marxism) has made its way into the evangelical church through several popular websites, authors, pastors, and thinkers. In my opinion, it’s deadly and could have a devastating effect. In fact, we’ve already seen a few fractures which may take awhile to heal – if ever.

A document has been written and published to bring clarity to these issues. The Statement on Social Justice and the Gospel was written by John MacArthur, Voddie Bauchum, Phil Johnson, and James White among others. It’s well-written, well-thought out and, most importantly, thoroughly biblical.

Part of the introduction says,

“Specifically, we are deeply concerned that values borrowed from secular culture are currently undermining Scripture in the areas of race and ethnicity, manhood and womanhood, and human sexuality. The Bible’s teaching on each of these subjects is being challenged under the broad and somewhat nebulous rubric of concern for “social justice.” If the doctrines of God’s Word are not uncompromisingly reasserted and defended at these points, there is every reason to anticipate that these dangerous ideas and corrupted moral values will spread their influence into other realms of biblical doctrines and principles.”

Please read it. You can also sign it if you’re so inclined (I did). This is an important time for the church in the United States.

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education

I had the privilege this morning of hearing Pastor Rick Elzinga preach on “What the Bible Says About the Education of Children,” which is a paper written by the Elders of Southwest Hills Baptist Church. Here is a summary of his sermon in one sentence: Children are a gift from the Lord; they belong neither to the parents, the church, or the state, and as such parents are responsible to bring them up in a way that’s pleasing to God, which obviously includes their education.

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open-Bible

How do we know what’s right and wrong? How do we know that abortion is wrong? How do we know that all human beings have dignity, value, and worth? How do we know that there are two sexes – male and female – which are assigned to us by God at our conception? How do we know the true spiritual condition of mankind (lost, sinful, and fallen)? How do we know how we can be right with God?

There are a number of answers, and almost all of them are wrong. Human reason and logic can’t give us the answers. Neither can intuition, personal experience, or tradition. As Christians, we rely on revelation. God has revealed Himself to us and He has spoken to us in His Word. The reason we know anything, and can know anything, is because God has revealed it to us.

When we think about any issue or question, whether inside the church or not, our first question needs to be “What does the Scripture say?” In other words, we need to ask what God thinks about it. This ought to be our first instinct, not our last. God’s Word – what He has to say – is authoritative in every area of life. That instinct, however, is in short supply in today’s church. We seem to take our cues from just about any other source than God and His Word.

It ought not be so, as illustrated by the following two passages. The apostle Paul has been arguing in the early chapters of the book of Romans that everyone is sinful and, therefore, deserving of God’s wrath (1:18-3:20). He then proclaims that justification by faith alone is the answer to the question of how sinful man can be right with a holy God (3:21-31). In 4:1, he says, in effect, “What about Abraham? How was he justified?” In order to give his answer, he appeals to Scripture, when he says, “What does the Scripture say?” (4:3). A quotation from Genesis 15:6 follows: “Abraham believed God and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.” Paul cites Scripture to make his case and bring the discussion to an end – the matter is settled.

The second passage is Matthew 19:3-9. Some Pharisees challenged Jesus about whether or not a man could divorce his wife. Instead of quoting an influential rabbi or two, Jesus went straight to the Scripture to give the authoritative answer. He said, “Have you not read?” in verse 4. In other words, “What does the Scripture say?” The Lord Jesus asked this question many times during His ministry. He continually appealed to God’s Word as the final authority in all matters.

The church needs to remember and recover this crucial principle. We know what’s right and wrong, what’s true and false, because we read it in God’s Word – because God says so. There’s nothing wrong with believing and saying that. In fact, if we’re going to be faithful Christians, that’s exactly what we’ll do.

 

 

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This evening, I had the privilege of preaching on Psalm 11. Here is a summary of my sermon in one sentence: When crisis comes (and it will), the righteous should trust God, be faithful, and be courageous for the glory of God.

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nashvillestatement

Having read the Nashville Statement carefully and with prayer, I gladly signed it. The statement represents the biblical teaching on human sexuality which the Christian church as held for two thousand years. In other words, there’s nothing new in it. It’s a reminder of God’s Law and a proclamation of His gospel.

Human identity and sexuality is widely misunderstood in our day. Homosexuality, same-sex marriage, and transgenderism are only the start – there’s more to come. Because of that, a number of Christian scholars and leaders met in Nashville, Tennessee to write a statement that clearly presented the Christian position.

The need for a statement like this became apparent immediately as reactions began to roll in. The statement was panned, and even vilified, by many on the Left (and even some who consider themselves evangelical Christians), and praised by many on the Right. As the church, we need to think clearly on these issues, and the Nashville Statement is a good step in the right direction.

I use you to read the Nashville Statement here.

I would also suggest that you read a piece by Rosaria Butterfield on why she signed the Statement. You can read it here.

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th-309

“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)

Al Mohler writers a letter to American Christians called “Letter from Berlin: The Letters of History and the Heresy of Racial Superiority.” It’s especially important to think about after what happened in Charlottesville, Virginia last weekend. You can read it here

Joe Carter has written an FAQ on Charlottesville, which can be read here. It’ll help give you a basic grasp of the situation.

The Wall Street Journal has a well-reasoned, well-written editorial about our culture and its response to Charlottesville, focusing on identity politics, in specific. You can read it here.

Does our job matter? Does God have anything to say about in His Word? Yes, our job does matter (including the way we do it), and yes God does have quite a bit to say about it in His Word. Dan Doriani has written a helpful article called “12 Basic Principles for Faith and Work.” You can read it here.

Mindy Belz, of WORLD, says plants needs pruning, but so do we as God’s people. Read her excellent piece here.

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The title describes the purpose of this short book: Why Christian Kids Need A Christian Education. Douglas Wilson, pastor of Christ Church in Moscow, Idaho and one of the founding fathers of the Classical Christian Education movement, makes his case in 71 pages.

Wilson doesn’t get to his point right away, but spends much of his time (and ink) laying the groundwork. He does this by dealing with issues that need to be understood and embraced before the question can be answered. A few of these are knowing what a Christian worldview is and what it isn’t, the nature of education, and what everyone knows – Christian or not.

Wilson pleads for Christian parents to consider the disastrous results of government education and do something about it. Hopefully this book will help you do that.

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