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Are People Afraid of Your Church?

Posted on Jan. 02, 2010

Should people be afraid of the church? Actually, yes! In a day and age where we have all been taught to make people feel comfortable about our churches, here is some biblical thinking on the matter from Jim Savastio. There is a clear biblical pattern that when God is at work, people fear. In Timothy 5:19-20, 19, Paul instructs Timothy that the normal rebukes for sin in the church should produce fear and that, “Those who are sinning rebuke in the presence of all, that the rest also may fear.”

In Acts 2:43, during the time of a great outpouring of grace upon the church we read, “Then fear came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were done through the apostles.”

In Acts 5:5,10-11 fear gripped the community when it was learned that Ananias and Saphira died after being found lying, “Then Ananias, hearing these words, fell down and breathed his last. So great fear came upon all those who heard these things….10 Then immediately she fell down at his feet and breathed her last. And the young men came in and found her dead, and carrying her out, buried her by her husband. 11 So great fear came upon all the church and upon all who heard these things.”

In Acts 19:16-17, when the power of God was exercised against men with evil spirits, fear fell upon all, “Then the man in whom the evil spirit was leaped on them, overpowered them, and prevailed against them, so that they fled out of that house naked and wounded. 17 This became known both to all Jews and Greeks dwelling in Ephesus; and fear fell on them all, and the name of the Lord Jesus was magnified.”

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Another Reason to Love the Church

Posted on Jan. 01, 2010

Gresham Machen Reminds Us of Another Reason to Love the Church

“Is there no refuge from strife? Is there no place of refreshing where a man can prepare for the battle of life? Is there no place where two or three can gather in Jesus’ name, to forget for the moment all those things that divide nation from nation and race from race, to forget human pride, to forget the passions of war, to forget the puzzling problems of industrial strife, and to unite in overflowing gratitude at the foot of the Cross? If there be such a place, then that is the house of God and that the gate of heaven. And from under the threshold of that house will go forth a river that will revive the weary world.” (Christianity and Liberalism [1923], 180-81)

Gresham Machen Died 72 Years Ago Today, January 1 - He was fifty five. Darryl Hart remembers this compelling and insightful statement,

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How Do I Find Time for This Elder Discipleship?

Posted on Dec. 29, 2009

I know from some conversations that some are thinking, “How do I make time for this?”

Here are five points to consider:

First, your heart has to be in it. You have to be convinced that this is what you need at this time in your life. If it is, don’t let the opportunity pass. All good things require discipline, difficult decisions and energetic stretching of the hours of the day. It is worth it, but your heart has to be in it or the efforts will fall off.

Second, we would want you to be able to set aside 3-4 hours per week to read the books and meet with the group once per week. Some will finish the books and some will not. The books are generally not very thick so the book list is really not as massive in terms of sheer reading as it looks. There are more books than there is reading. Having the books as resources will also be a valuable asset for many years to come.

Third, for many men, it is easy to find 3-4 hours of reading per week if they refrain from surfing the internet, looking at blogs and chasing news stories one link at a time and watching funny video clips and other things. These things really add up. You may actually have more time in your schedule than you think because of misplaced priorities, time wasters and lawful research that may be better put aside.

Fourth, I recommend that men set aside specific times to do the reading. Two hours twice per week with no interruptions would be a nice way to do it, or some variation of that.

Fifth, have your children do the reading with you as part of their school. This will give lots of opportunity for you to discuss meaningful things around the dinner table and while you are sitting in your house, walking by the way, lying down and rising up.

Click Here for more information

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Free Online Copy of “Charity and its Fruits” is Available

Posted on Dec. 26, 2009

Check out this free online version of “Charity and it’s Fruits” by clicking on this link.

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Family Tensions and Holidays - Check this from Russell Moore

Posted on Dec. 24, 2009

Here is some very practical wisdom from Russell Moore on “A Word about Family Tensions and the Holidays.”

He says, “human depravity doesn’t go into hibernation between Christmas Eve and New Year’s.” I liked how he identified how temptation comes to us at holiday gatherings, “God will allow you to be tested. He’ll refine you, bring you to the fullness of maturity in Christ. He probably won’t do it by your fighting lions before the emperor or standing with a John 3:16 sign before a tank in the streets of Beijing. More likely, it will be through those seemingly little places of temptation—like whether you’ll love the belching brother-in-law at the other end of the table who wants to talk about how the Cubans killed JFK and how to make $100,000 a year selling herbal laxatives on the Internet.” Read the whole article and be improved.

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A Sobering Christmas Eve

Posted on Dec. 23, 2009

It’s Tyranny Eve.

It’s the Nightmare before Christmas.

It’s an Economic Winter wonderland.

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Elder Discipleship Update

Posted on Dec. 23, 2009

Next Tuesday evening at 8:00-10:00 Eastern Time, we will be having our first online “Elder Discipleship” discussion. We are starting with a focus on Jonathan Edwards collection of lectures on 1 Corinthians 13, “Charity and it’s Fruits.”

If you have not yet signed up, click here to register. 

I would like to give you some details for our meeting. 

First, let me direct you to the updated detailed reading schedule we have posted here. You will notice that we have scheduled discussion for each book on the reading list. Each reading assignment is identified by the date corresponding with Monday of that week…

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“Tyranny Eve”: Early Morning Christmas Eve Gathering on Capitol Hill to Protest Health Care Reform B

Posted on Dec. 23, 2009

Go to for more information.

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Fall Intern Class Book Vote - Father, Son, and Holy Spirit by Bruce Ware

Posted on Dec. 22, 2009

Hands down, the favorite of this intern class was Father, Son, & Holy Spirit: Relationships, Roles, & Relevance by Bruce Ware.

FYI: it was also the favorite of the Spring class.

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The Grace of Charity in the Heart

Posted on Dec. 22, 2009

Our first “Elder Discipleship” reading is from Jonathan Edwards, Charity and Its Fruits. Here is one of Edward’s statements on the importance of love in the church,

“The ordinary influence of the Spirit of God, working the grace of charity in the heart, is a more excellent blessing than any of the extraordinary gifts of the Spirit.”

Charity and Its Fruits, Jonathan Edwards, p28

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