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Showing posts from February, 2008

The All-Sufficient Tool to Counsel the Fool

For a counseling paper I wrote on the "fool" in the book of Proverbs and how we as biblical counselors can adequately help them from God's Word. Here is part of my conclusion (and plea!): It behooves the biblical counselor to take this issue to heart and call the foolish man to turn from his simplicity and folly. Let it never be forgotten that “this ‘turning’ is a turning from loving ‘simple ways’ (1:22), that is, a life apart from Yahweh, to the ‘fear of the LORD’ (2:5) and his discipline (3:11-12). The ultimate motivation is spiritual. To love the Lord for His sake is the core of wise counsel (1:7; 2:5; 3:9-12).” [1] The Scriptures really do contain all the information necessary to “life and godliness” (2 Pet 1:3). [2] May the practical and sobering words of Louis Goldberg be etched on our minds as we remember the centrality of the Word of God in all our counseling sessions: Folly, however, does not even begin to satisfy the heart hunger of man, and offers nothing to s

The Church's responsibility to demon possession today

I had a great class discussion yesterday on the Christian's response and counseling methods in relating to demon possession. Here are a few points as to the church's mode in dealing with demon possession: 1. This is the Lord's work, not ours. 2. Believers do not have the right to take authority in Jesus’ name over the forces of evil (Jude 9, 2 Pet 2:10-11) 3. Only unbelievers can be possessed by demons (Col. 1:13; 1 Cor. 15:54-57). 4. The gospel is the critical tool in dealing with demons (Rom. 1:16). 5. Believers are not immune from the clever satanic temptation and opposition (Job 1:6-2:10; Matt. 16:22-23; Lk. 22:31; 32; 2 Cor. 12:7). 6. Sometimes God uses Satan as an instrument of judgment or chastisement (1 Sam. 16:14-15; Lk. 22:3; Jn. 13:27; 1 Cor. 5:5; 1 Tim. 1:18-20). 7. Believers are are instructed not to rebuke Satan and demons, but to resist them (1 Pet. 5:9; Jas. 4:7; Eph. 6:13). 8. In sum, “Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. L

Youth Group Day

Hey CCC Youth!!!!! This is for you! In case you weren't at youth group last night, we have a 6 flags magic mountain trip planned and we want YOU to come. Here are the details: Date : THIS Saturday, March 1, 2008 Time : Meet at CCC Parking lot at 9am How much : $25 (you won't find tickets cheaper anywhere...guaranteed!) Return time : Back to CCC at 7 pm Lunch info: We will go to our apartment and have lunch there to save $$! Please call or email me today if you want to go!

Learning from the Master

One of the things that always intrigues me when I read the gospels is the compassionate nature of Jesus. Not only is this instructive and thought-provoking, but it is also convicting. In Matthew 9, we have another such occasion where Jesus demonstrates his compassion: Matthew 9:36-38 36 And seeing the multitudes, He felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and downcast like sheep without a shepherd. 37 Then He said to His disciples, "The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. 38 "Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest." The three principles I glean from this text are as follows: I. We must have compassion for lost people. I notice as I read Matthew's gospel that Jesus had compassion (9:36; 14:14; 20:34) on people who were in bondage to illness, distress, and, most of all, sin. It says in v.36 that Jesus saw the peopel and he felt compassion for them. How often do we see people living in distress, caught

A compliment for a preacher

One of the worst things a preacher can hear after a sermon is a mere "that was the best message you've ever preached" because after a few weeks of saying that same familiar line, the preacher doesn't believe you anymore. On the other hand, one of the best compliments a preacher can receive is one where the person comes up and says, "I now understand God's Word clearer now because you have told me what the text means." This happened to me last night. I went to a local rehabilitation center where I often go to preach (yes, only to preach, not to enroll for rehabilitation!) and preached last night on Mark 15:42-16:8. This was the same text I preached from Sunday night at church. I told them I had the joy of preaching through the whole book of Mark and wanted to give them the climactic event of the life of Christ. At any rate, at the end of the hour-long sermon, one guy raced up to me and, after introducing himself, said "I have never heard the Bible ta

Spurgeon on preaching

“Keep to the gospel, then, more and more. Give the people Christ and nothing but Christ….We have only one remedy for them; preach Jesus Christ, and let us do it more and more. By the roadside, in the little room, in the theatre, anywhere, everywhere, let us preach Christ. Write books if you like and do anything else within your power; but whatever else you cannot do, preach Christ.” ~Charles Spurgeon

A little Saturday evening humor

Tonight I saw this clip and thought it was hilarious. This is what not to do at an ice hockey game if they ask you to sing the national anthem! :=) Enjoy!

One of my greatest joys

This Sunday I have a precious opportunity. I have the privilege of finishing up the Gospel of Mark at church this Sunday evening. What a joy it has been for me to preach through this magnificent gospel. How many glorious truths are revealed in our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. It truly is mindboggling when we consider the humanity and the deity of Jesus side by side. These truths are found in this gospel (and in the whole Bible, for that matter). It has been a delight to delve deep into the glorious riches of the person and character of Christ. There have been hard passages to preach - total commitment to Christ, denying self, the crucifixion of our Lord, the literal and physical resurrection of our Savior and the myriads of miracles that He performed. Yet I am more convinced of the truth of this statement now more than ever before: It is better to drive people away with the truth than to keep them comfortable in their sin ... It is better to have them leave because they can’t handle

Take the time to teach and train

Today in my advanced biblical counseling course we discussed the all-too-common problem in today's culture of ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder; or known as ADD). In discussing the problem, I was surprised at the symptoms that can cause a teacher, a parent, an administrator or whoever to put a child on this medication - from making a careless mistake in homework, to having difficulty maintaining attention in something, to difficulty in organizing, or forgetfulness, or a child who often runs or climbs. Most of these sound like normal childhood situations to me. The issue is not which drug to prescribe to the child but rather how parents should deal with these situations. One quote from my professor stuck out to me. He said this (in the context of the parents properly disciplining their children to teach them): Make every disciplinary event an opportunity for the Gospel! Oh how true this is. May we be true to this calling. Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he sh

Practice what you preach

How hard it is for the preacher to apply everything he studies. Moreover, how hard it is for the preacher to apply to his own life that which he expects his people to practice. This weekend I spoke on Godly living from 1 Peter 3. One point of application I really attempted to drive home is the idea of being harmonious with one another; not retaliating; not paying back insult for insult. Listen to how Peter says it: 1 Peter 3:8-9 To sum up, let all be harmonious, sympathetic, brotherly, kindhearted, and humble in spirit; not returning evil for evil, or insult for insult, but giving a blessing instead; for you were called for the very purpose that you might inherit a blessing. It was my goal this weekend to try and live this application out. I knew I would boldly proclaim it to the youth group at our retreat, but I wanted to practice what I preach . If there is one season in life - I believe - in which people need a godly example, it is none other than Junior and Senior high. It is such

A witness for Christ in our culture

I'd covet any prayers from those who read this blog. I leave this afternoon to take my youth group on our annual winter retreat. We're going skiing at Big Bear Resort this weekend. It should be a fun time. But most of all, pray for me because I'm teaching four times on what it means to be a light for Christ amidst this dark godless culture in which we live. I am teaching from Matthew 5:13-16 tomorrow, a Jet tour of Jeremiah on Saturday morning, 1 Peter 3 Saturday night and 2 Corinthians 2-3 on Sunday morning. Thanks for your prayers.

Seminary Life

Before I begin, this picture just made me laugh so I had to post it here. It in no way reflects my theology or is in support for what I'm going to say on this post. But I thought it was humerous. The more I go to seminary, the more humbled I am. More often than not, I wonder as I'm driving to class, "Am I crazy?" I say that to myself because I am investing many hours of study, hard work, class time, and sacrificing brutally on sleep to be reminded each day of how much I do not know. Now I don't say that in a negative way. Just the opposite is true. I am humbled each day that I go to class that God has entrusted to me a monstrous stewardship. And I think that is the correct word for seminary - stewardship. I say this for a number of reasons: 1) I go to many classes to be reminded of how much I don't know in that specific field of study. For example, today I was in Exegesis of Psalms with a brilliant professor and was reminded of how much theology, grammatica

Let's properly prepare for the next president

Is Driscoll really a heretic?

According to some missional churches and pastors, he's approaching quickly. What is the issue? According to some emerging and missional guys, he is using a Dell computer from the podium while teaching. Hahaha. "You're kidding!" you exclaim. "Not at all!" I respond. Darrin Patrick, pastor of The Journey church in St. Louis said this: " Yeah, I knew he used a Dell, but I never thought he would in public. It has really devastated many of our church planters ." Haha. It's just interesting that the guys are making jokes saying that the pastor is not cool or hip because he's using a Dell. Brothers, beware.

What I learn from the Russian Church

We had a speaker in chapel who is the founder and president of Slavic Gospel Association, Dr. Bob Provost. He shared his heart regarding the need for men to be biblically trained to teach and preach because there is an insatiable hunger in Russia for Bible-teaching pastors and churches! He mentioned some of the stark differences between the American church and the Russian Church with some applications that we can glean from them . Here they are: 1) We must develop a stronger appetite for fellowship . What an amazing concept! Scripture says: Hebrews 10:25 not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more, as you see the day drawing near. It is a relality, as sad as it may be, that when the preacher gives the benediction, the church literally empties in no more than five minutes. In Russia, it's not this way. In fact, in Russia, the average church meets three times per week for five hours each time. In each of tho