To know Christ and to make Him known

At the very center of Christianity is a Person: Jesus Christ. We know this in our theology but sometimes I wonder if we know it in our mission and value statements, especially in our experience. What moves me and motivates me as a pastor, and personally as a believer, is to see everyone in my sphere of influence have such a personal encounter with Jesus Christ that they would be ruined for empty substitutes. Continue reading

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Posted in Faith, Love, Sonship | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

How do we relate to the Ten Commandments?

My wife and I saw this meme on a billboard while we were traveling yesterday and it got us to talking about how we, as followers of Christ, relate to the Ten Commandments. This particular meme was originally push-back to Ted Turner’s infamous “Ten Voluntary Initiatives” in the 90’s. But my point here is not about this particular meme but about the premise of the argument itself. Continue reading

Posted in Faith, Grace | Tagged , , , , | 15 Comments

The skinny on indoctrination

Indoctrination is the process of teaching a person or group to accept a set of beliefs uncritically. Indoctrination is being taught what to think, whereas critical thinking is being taught how to think. It is my contention that our society, as a whole, doesn’t teach the latter at all. In fact, it’s tacitly forbidden. Continue reading

Posted in Faith | Tagged , , , | 17 Comments

Evangelizing Evangelicalism

If you’ve been following my blog for awhile you know that I can be somewhat of an iconoclast with regard to popular evangelical teachings. I love my evangelical heritage, embrace it fully, so I don’t do this just to stir things up. I do so because I believe that too many of our doctrines actually do damage to our understanding of God and of ourselves. And I’m not alone in this assessment. So, it is in this light that I want to share a recent video from John Crowder. Continue reading

Posted in Doctrine, Faith, Reformation | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments

Encountering Jesus changes everything

I don’t believe you can have an encounter with Jesus and not be fundamentally changed—without becoming more loving, gracious, patient, kind, self-giving, understanding, faithful…. On the other hand, when people tell me they know Christ but remain ungracious, hateful, unforgiving, vindictive, factious…I know they’re lying (to themselves, probably). Continue reading

Posted in Faith, Grace, Love, Sonship | Tagged , , , , , | 7 Comments

Why there never can be an online Church

While there are a lot of helpful things we can do online as members of Jesus’ Church, it can never be the local church. I personally love writing and blogging, but make no mistake about it, nothing can replace actual human contact. Technology is great for processing and sharing information, but it’s terrible at making real human connections. Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 19 Comments

Why we need to (properly) understand Christian history

I saw this video (below) posted by Wanda at SmartChristian.net that briefly describes the positive influence Christianity has had on the world. I believe that having a good understanding of history is important, so I thought it would be good to post it here, too. I will also review some of my own thoughts on the subject and share what others a lot smarter than me have to say about it. Continue reading

Posted in Christian apologetics, Faith | Tagged , , , , | 11 Comments