My friend Steve Kneale has frequently pointed out that we are not commanded to “read the Bible every day.” That’s a shock for a lot of us evangelicals because we grew up believing that was the command. That’s not to say that reading the Bible isn’t a good, helpful and enjoyable thing for many. Nor… Continue reading How can we help people to let Christ’s word dwell in them richly?
What exactly does it mean to be a pastor or an elder in a church? First of all, you will notice that I am in effect using the words “pastor” and “elder” interchangeably because we are essentially talking about the same thing. An elder is someone who carries leadership authority within a family/clan/tribe linked to… Continue reading Do you take the role of pastor/elder seriously enough?
In his book “Nine Marks of a Healthy Church,” Mark Dever makes Expositional Preaching his first and most important mark of healthy church life. I want to suggest that Dever is right to give expositional preaching such a central position, but that he does not go far enough. Why is Expositional Preaching so important? Dever… Continue reading Expository Worship
It was just after I’d preached my first placement sermon whilst studying at Oak Hill and the pastor of the church, Joe Kapolyo came over to me to give me a little bit of feedback. “Well I’ve got some good news for you. It wasn’t perfect.” My initial mental response was “Well if that’s the… Continue reading Pastor: Preach grace to yourself
First of all, I think we can rule out two extremes. We cannot take the egalitarian approach but nor can we endorse the traditional Brethren approach and a number of traditional approaches which in effect fail to recognise that women are equal in nature. We should recognise that sadly churches have got this badly wrong… Continue reading Male and female leadership questions (5) Implications for church life
We are now in a position to see how the boundaries function together in order to create theological principles which should shape church practice. We’ve seen that there are both permissions and restrictions for women in Paul’s letters in terms of leadership and teaching. We’ve also seen that these relate to Creation and The Fall… Continue reading Male and female leadership questions (4) Pulling things together theologically
When Steve Chalke infamously used his punchline comparing Penal Substitution to “cosmic child abuse” a lot of people picked up on how offensive this was towards God. I think Chalke’s defence would be that it could not be offensive to God because the God he believed in had not punished his son on our behalf… Continue reading Be careful with your offence
It’s probably a book of the Bible rarely preached on as a sequential expository series. People tend to focus on individual proverbs in isolation. However, when I spent time with a local church working through Proverbs as a teaching series, we found it deeply helpful and encouraging. So, if you are looking for a future… Continue reading Teaching Proverbs
I mentioned the other day the conversation I had with Dan James about Haggai 2. One of the things I’ve been challenged about increasingly is the importance of preaching to the affections. This is an old puritan phrase meaning that our preaching should speak to the whole person not just to the intellect. We don’t… Continue reading “Do you want to be clean?” Preaching to the affections from the Old Testament
One well known preacher allegedly once said that if we are to preach the Gospel properly, so that it’s full force is heard, then we are likely to be accused of being anti-nominans. An anti-nomian (against law) is someone who believes and teaches that the law only applied before Christ, we are now under grace… Continue reading How not to be a heretic – preaching the negatives