America and much of the world have undergone a sexual revolution. The Church and the Family have largely followed. How is it working out? Is there another way?
How are relations between men and women in American society? How about the rest of the world? Are they better than they were one thousand, one hundred, ten, or even two years ago? How are relations between men and women in the Church? Are they as God intended?
Is the Bible a misogynistic book? How can Paul, and the Scottish Presbyterian Preacher James Fordyce (1720-1796, in his Sermons for Young Women), and ministers like me even talk (“mansplain?”) about the differing roles of men and women in the Church? We can, and indeed we must, because the Bible is the word of God, profitable for teaching, reproof, correction, and training in righteousness (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Long after our bodies, and those of our adversaries, return to dust, His Word will remain. In these and all other areas, the Word burns within us (Jeremiah 20:9).
Continue reading “God’s Design for Men and Women in the Church”
Life is exhausting, and ministry sometimes makes it worse. How can Christians be revived on our life’s journey?
Followers of Christ grow weary and sometimes fall away:
- Normal ups and downs of life and ministry – To be human is to encounter sickness, injury, and disappointment. Things break, opportunities vanish, relationships wither, and hopes fade. In ministry, people we love and serve angrily resist and reject. We labor for years with seemingly little effect.
- Major hurtful events and people in our lives – Sometimes even friends and loved ones succumb to the pressure of the world and reject us and our faith. Sometimes they end their own lives.
- Discrimination against and persecution of Christians in the United States (academic, political, economic) – We lose our jobs and other opportunities due to the practice of our faith. Christian schools are threatened with loss of accreditation, and Christians are seen as unfit for political office because of their beliefs. Christians have become criminals simply for reading a Bible passage or saying something that others don’t like. For example, H.R.5 – Equality Act 2019 – LGBTQ rights states “The Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 (42 U.S.C. 2000bb et seq.) shall not provide a claim concerning, or a defense to a claim under, a covered title, or provide a basis for challenging the application or enforcement of a covered title.” Whatever one thinks about LGBTQ rights, religious beliefs would be no defense to prosecution (and persecution). Christians who believe what the Bible states about LGBTQ issues are specifically targeted.
Non-Christians encounter issues one and two, but increasingly Christians are facing problem three as well. It is so easy to despair. Amidst these challenges, how can believers in Jesus Christ be revived?
Continue reading “Reviving the Saints”
Look for God to arise and do great work in our days. But beware, we will get more than we bargained for when He does.
Believers in the Living God since the Exodus have prayed that God would arise, smite evil, and deliver them from their troubles. In His patience, the Lord delays His judgement, giving each man every opportunity to believe. But eventually, He brings to people what they deserve: disaster to the wicked and blessings to the righteous. Asking God to arise is a dangerous business. We may discover, as Habakkuk did, that God’s plan is neither what we like nor what we want. We will also discover, as Isaiah did, that we are not as righteous as we think we are. When God arises, though our salvation is sure, we will encounter pain and trouble, just like those we oppose.
Do you ever wish that God would arise and oppose evil? Do you wish you could see it? How do we know that God will arise? How do we know that the wicked will be punished? Why does it take so long? This article will examine Isaiah 33:1-17 to discover what happens, and what Christians must do, when God arises.
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How to eliminate rotten wood – the thoughts, word, and actions that drag you down, whether they seem big or small – in your life.
The wooden plank on the deck gave a soft “squish” as I stepped down. I pushed a little harder with my heel and the wood collapsed, leaving a hole in the deck, and exposing the dirt several feet below. “Ugh” I thought, and began to check the rest of the deck for rotten spots. In total, only five boards needed to be replaced, all touching each other in the same part of the deck. I looked up. There was a leak in the gutter above the rotten spots, and I recalled seeing a nearly continuous stream of water hitting this part of the deck during several rainstorms over the past several months. While working on the deck, and lying in bed thinking about it, I recognized many parallels between rotten wood and sin in our lives.
Continue reading “Rotten Wood”