Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

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Vehicles of God’s Pursuit, the Necessity of Persistence in Evangelism…

June 7, 2013

Some further thoughts on apologetics and evangelism.

The Urban Witness

“5What then is Apollos? What is Paul?  Servants through whom you believed, as the Lord assigned to each. 6 I planted,Apollos watered, but God gave the growth. 7Soneither he who plants nor he who waters is anything, but only God who gives the growth. 8He who plants and he who waters are one, and each will receive his wages according to his labor. 9For we areGod’s fellow workers. You are God’s field,God’s building.” I Corinthians 3:5-9

The “Go ye therefore” commission that animates the heartbeat of the church should echo ever louder in the mind and heart of the believer.  Our individual obedience to this command and to all it entails is a chief evidence of our own interaction with the power of the Gospel.

God does not need the assistance of man in the task of Evangelism.  This God has written His law on the hearts of men, He…

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Theological Inception, waging war within a hostile mind…

June 4, 2013

Some thoughts on apologetics.

The Urban Witness

Their inclination to hide is as old as the garden, they retreat from God not in fear but in contempt, not behind bushes but beneath ignorance and indifference.  Why then do we hide when we possess so great a catalogue of grace?  May God grant us strength to resist denial and courage to say what Peter would not, ‘yes I am His disciple.’ -R. Nash.

There are common phrases in the evangelical world, rallying cries of evangelism that find their root in Scripture.  “We must reach the nations,” “we must preach to unreached people groups.”  These phrases are supplemented by organizations that highlight our mission to “Go into all the world, making disciples of all the nations;”  to “be my witnesses…to the ends of the earth.”   We spend millions of dollars, give thousands of sermons to millions of agreeable souls, all focused on the mission we’ve been given and…

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Worried About Witnessing? Don’t be….

April 19, 2013

Some thoughts on witnessing.

The Urban Witness

A member of your church tells you that he really wants to share his faith, but is afraid to do so. How would you respond to him?

I would first say that he should be very encouraged and thankful that he has a real desire to share his faith. A real mark of a believer, someone who has been born again by the “living” and abiding word of God is and should be a desire to proclaim the excellencies of “Him who called us out of darkness and into light.”(I Pet. 2:9) Indeed it is for this reason we have been called, to be a witness to all the nations. (Matt 28:19) I would then say that I understand the fear that comes with that calling, it is a natural foe that we all must face but one that we have been empowered to defeat to the glory of God…

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The Necessity of the Word to Salvation: Inclusive vs. Exclusive…

April 14, 2013

The Exclusivity of the Gospel of Christ.

The Urban Witness

 

One of the enduring mysteries of the Christian faith surrounds the nature and rational behind God’s revelation of Himself to His Creation.  “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims His handiwork,” (Ps. 19:1) and yet God’s action of revelation did not cease with the heavens and the earth.  Nor did God rest solely on the bearers of His image in creation.  God spoke this creation into existence by His Word.  He spoke to Adam and Eve in the Garden, issuing commandments from day one, precepts to secure the prosperity of His creatures within His creation to and for His Glory.  When that creation fell, God spoke the words of both judgment and promise.  Pain would come and toil would increase with enmity toward the speaking serpent, but salvation also was declared from the inception of sin.  God continued to speak directly to His creation…

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The Kingdom of God is…

April 2, 2013

XPISTOSThere has been much written in recent years about the Kingdom of God. However, with all its recent attention, there remains much left to be understood concerning the topic. The Kingdom, both as a doctrine and as a reality, is pregnant with intellectual tension and real life application. Consider these truths: The Kingdom has arrived in Christ, and yet we are to pray for it to come on earth as it is in heaven. (Matthew 6:10) As Christians we are citizens of the Kingdom, and yet we are still living in a world gripped by evil. (1 John 5:19) We are to seek the Kingdom above all else, only then will our earthly needs be met. (Matthew 6:33) The Kingdom will come with much prayer, the Kingdom will come with great certainty, and it will be gifted to those who suffer persecution for the sake of righteousness. (Matthew 5:10) Many of the above statements seem contradictory and yet they are all accurate, as believers how do we make sense of these truths?

As a matter of introduction, we are going to briefly examine the scope of understanding concerning the Kingdom of God. Like many of the systematic doctrines of the church, the Kingdom of God does not lend itself to easy definition. Furthermore I am under no illusions that I will be capable to give any newer definition to the topic that what has already been given.

Over the next several posts we are going to examine the Kingdom of God, or as gospel writer Matthew refers to it, the Kingdom of Heaven. This series will be brief and is meant to spur thought and further study. Were the sky parchment and the oceans ink there would not be enough room to expand upon this topic to its conclusion. Our effort will be to examine four texts in the gospel of Matthew and ask, What does this passage say about the Kingdom of God/Heaven? And how is this truth applicable to our faith?

 

Post one: The Kingdom of God is: Greater than its Current Appearance…

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Joy Comes in the Mourning…

March 30, 2013

Some thoughts before Easter morning.

The Urban Witness

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.”

Scripture, time and again, affirms two truths; We live in a world of denial. We live in a world that is in the grips of the evil one. These two statements are more than coincidental. Satan’s main goal is to get us to live in denial; denial over our sin, denial over God’s existence, denial over the truth and power of Scripture. The world buys into his philosophy and makes it a way of life. When bad things happen, when tragedy strikes the easiest thing to do is to seek comfort in the insufficient arms of denial.

This tactic stretches all the way back to the garden; Satan deceived Eve, planting a seed of denial, “surely you will not die…”. Eve and Adam bought the lie and in turn bought our slavery to sin. And when they sinned, they did…

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February 5, 2013

The Offensive Defense: Peter, Malchus, the Preacher and Christ…

The Urban Witness

“Then Simon Peter, having a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s servant and cut off his right ear. (The servant’s name was Malchus.)  So Jesus said to Peter, “Put your sword into its sheath; shall I not drink the cup that the Father has given me?”’ -John 18:10-11

We are called to preach in an era of irrational relativism and religious apathy.  The enemies of the church, be  they secularists, muslims, atheists or liberals, are increasingly hostile to the gospel and its followers.  Whether we like it or not, as Christians, we are constantly confronted with the cohorts of culture that seek to take captive our freedoms and hinder our mission.  The world is ambivalent to God, hostile toward His Son, and antagonistic to His message.  In light of these facts what is to be the Christian response?

John 18 is a prime picture of the fallen creation.  Man, once…

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