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Showing posts from April, 2010

The single (and only) intent and meaning of the biblical A/author is the ONLY meaning of a biblical text.

I like what Walter Kaiser says. I think I'm wholeheartedly committed to this viewpoint. He summarizes his view that there is only ONE meaning in Scripture and it is the meaning that the A/author (my way of saying both the human author and the divine Author) intended in some helpful axioms. 1. God’s meaning and revelatory-intention in any passage of Scripture may be accurately and confidently ascertained only by studying the verbal meanings of the divinely delegated and inspired human writers (138) 2. Only one verbal meaning is to be connected with any passage of Scripture unless the writer of the text gives literary and contextual clues that he has several aims in view for this exceptional passage (e.g., the two or three questions asked at the beginning of the Olivet discourse (138). 3. That single, original verbal meaning of the human author may be ascertained by heeding the usual literary conventions of history, culture, grammar, syntax, and accumulated theological context. And i

Man's 'free-will' and God's utter sovereignty—foes or friends?

I recently received this question from a friend from church: Question: I don't understand the relationship between freewill and God's plan. How do the two fit together? Any scripture and comments you have on the subject would be helpful. Thanks. My Answer : That is a great question and one that many people struggle with because there are so many issues involved. First of all, with an issue like this, we must remember first that God is perfectly good and has all (infinite) wisdom and understanding. Isaiah 55:9 9 "For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways And My thoughts than your thoughts. Romans 11:33-34 33 Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways! 34 For WHO HAS KNOWN THE MIND OF THE LORD, OR WHO BECAME HIS COUNSELOR? So, we must first understand that whatever God says HE fully and totally understands. We may not fully understand it becau

Lead me to the Rock that is higher than I.

Tonight I'm preaching Psalm 61 and the thrust of the psalm is being led by God to Himself who is our refuge and tower of protection. I found a few YouTube videos that may help put the images in perspective. Watch here and here . I love what Spurgeon says... How infinitely higher than we are is the salvation of God. We are low and grovelling, but [the protection/salvation of God] towers like some tall cliff far above us. This is its glory, and it is our delight when we have once climbed [onto] the rock and claimed an interest in it; but while we are as yet trembling seekers, the glory and sublimity of salvation appall us, and we feel that we are too unworthy even to be partakers of it; hence we are led to cry for grace upon grace, and to see how dependent we are for everything, not only for the Savior, but for the power to believe on him.

Will You Be Judged at the Great White Throne Judgment? Everyone Standing at This Judgment Will Be Damned.

Last night I preached one of the hardest sermons a preacher could ever teach. It wasn't hard because there were so many varying interpretations but it's hard because it such an unpopular message nowadays to proclaim. That message is on the Great White Throne judgment . I titled it: " Will your works damn you at the Great White Throne Judgment ?" I believe that this judgment is for non-believers only and that no believers will be at this judgment (Rom 8:1; John 3:18, 36). Nevertheless, this is one of the scariest portions of Scripture because there is no hope for the lost at this time. There is no second chance. The eternal Lake of Fire is the inevitable and sure outcome of this judgment for all who stand before the bar of God and are carefully scrutinized according to their every work to see if they can enter eternal bliss. I preached this last night at a Rehab center and opened with a 10 minute anecdote on a man who died and was judged and condemned at the Grea

Look...I have teeth.


Step back and look at the big picture.

"To study John's gospel in detail for the first time is like becoming heir to an ancient, beautiful tapestry. Its artistry astounds. And the closer we examine it, the more we are awed by mysteries hidden from the casual observer. To understand the part we must stand back and comprehend the whole. And when we investigate its background and history, its value and uniqueness—even its message—acquire an entirely new depth" (Gary M. Burge, "Interpreting the Gospel of John," in Interpreting the New Testament: Essays on Methods and Issues , ed. by Black and Dockery [Broadman & Holman], 383).


“Let the pastors boldly declare all things by the word of God, of which they are constituted administrators. Let them constrain all the power, glory, and excellence of the world to give place to and to obey the divine majesty of the word. Let then enjoin everyone by it, from the highest to the lowest. Let them edify the body of Christ. Let them devastate Satan’s reign. Let them pasture the sheep, kill the wolves, instruct and exhort the rebellious. Let them bind and loose, thunder and lightening, if necessary, but let them do all according to the word of God.” —John Calvin

A preacher's reminder. A needed checkup to faithfully exposit God's Truth.

Some good soul food for the day... The preacher is a herald; his work is heralding the King's message. . . . Now the herald does not invent his message; he merely transmits and explains it. It is not his to criticise its wisdom or fitness; this belongs to his sovereign alone. On the one hand, . . . he is an intelligent medium of communication with the king's enemies; he has brains as well as a tongue; and he is expected so to deliver and explain his master's mind, that the other party shall receive not only the mechanical sounds, but the true meaning of the message. On the other hand, it wholly transcends his office to presume to correct the tenour of the propositions he conveys, by either additions or change. These are the words of God's commission to an ancient preacher: "Arise, go unto Ninevah, that great city, and preach unto it the preaching that I bid thee." The preacher's task may be correctly explained as that of (instrumentally) for

Psalm 59 - How to pray when enemies surround your house.

Last night I preached Psalm 59 which records David's prayer to God when Saul sent men to surround David's house to kill him. That historical situation is recounted in 1 Samuel 19:11ff. Amazingly, David's prayer reflects a man who begs God for refuge, asks God to destroy the wicked, and resolves in his own heart to praise God in song. Psalm 59 is quite amazing in the structure (which baffles commentators across the board) and in its dealings with the problem of evil (=theodicy). In this prayer, David transitions from: 1. Deliver me, O God! 2. Destroy them, O God! 3. Delight in my praises, O God! Feel free to listen here .

a new hair style.

The only problem was, Elizabeth wasn't a big fan... HT: Todd Bolen

Preach the gospel as if it all depends on you; yet know God is the One who changes the sinner's heart.

Because it is my responsibility to share the gospel as if souls could die before the sun goes down I must evangelize with urgency. Meanwhile, because it is God’s sovereignty that opens the sinner’s heart to hear the word, accept the word, understand the word, and believe the Word, I evangelize with confident trust that God’s sovereign purposes shall be accomplished. Last night I had the wonderful privilege of meeting and sharing the gospel with a man at a BBQ. It was quite a lengthy conversation and this fellow knew Scripture—or, I should clarify and say that he knew some ‘random’ Bible verses yanked out of context to suit his own purposes. At any rate, he told me that all roads lead to the same ultimate destination. He told me that God speaks to him and that he also believes in reincarnation. Fundamentally, he finally agreed with the statement I posed to him that all relations essentially teach the same thing: man must work hard and do good to attain the best that the divine has to of

Barnett - Word Filled Family Book Review

Just posted a book review on our church website of John Barnett's book, Word-Filled Families: Walk in Truth . It is an excellent book that definitely deserves a close examination by every husband, wife, and parent. Read my full pdf review here . Here's my conclusion: In conclusion, I wholeheartedly commend this book to everyone who is married, considering marriage, engaged, with or without children (whether they haven’t been born yet (!), whether they are young children, teenagers, or out of the home) as this book will be a great encouragement and tool to convict you of sin and give the practical solutions to implement the recommended truths to your Christian life so that you can have a word filled family and, most of all, glorify the God who made you and created you to make much of him and model His relationship with you in your marriage (and, by extension, family).

Parenting checkup...

Here are four helpful principles to remember: 1. Discipline must be firm, fair, and consistent. 2. A parent must know where his or her children are and what they're doing at all times, and be with them as much as possible. 3. Children need to see love demonstrated between the father and mother, and see genuine love lived out before them. 4. A family must be cohesive, regularly spending time together. John Barnett, Word Filled Families , 179.

Psalm 58:10 - Rejoice at the Destruction of the Wicked?

Does the Bible really say that the righteous will rejoice at God's vengeance upon the wicked? Yes, it does. First of all, the Bible no where advocates or condones people rejoicing over the downfall of the enemy because of personal vengeance . All vengeance must be left to the LORD (Deut 32 and Rom 12). Nevertheless, when the Christian has a God-centered perspective, it is absolutely reasonable—yes, required—that believers rejoice at the destruction of the wicked. (Again, this is not personal vengeance or gloating that the wicked are finally cast into hell.) But in my sermon last night I provided seven reasons why the righteous will rejoice at the judgment of the wicked: 1. God commands it (Rev 19:1-10) In a mysterious way, God commands believers to rejoice because His judgments are poured out upon the wicked. Just read Revelation 19:1 (which immediately follows Rev 17-18 and the cataclysmic destruction of Babylon, the false religious system and the false political system durin

Ladies...Can I have your attention, "He's NOT available yet..."

The resurrection of Jesus Christ affects every theological category.

The literal, physical, bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ is incredibly important . It affects all doctrines… Bibliology (=Bible) – Jesus’ resurrection is announced and proclaimed as undeniable historical fact in the true, inerrant, and inspired pages of Scripture. You deny the resurrection, you deny God’s Word as true and therefore make God a liar. Theology Proper (=God) – Jesus’ resurrection reveals the absolutely unstoppable and unsurpassing power of God who can raise the dead to new life! Anthropology – Jesus had to die and conquer death because man is so sinful and helpless that he can’t conquer death in his own strength Christology – Jesus’ resurrection shows that He Himself has the power to rise from the dead—proof of his deity! Pneumatology – Jesus rose from the power of the Holy Spirit who is God and able to raise Christ from the dead. Angelology – The angels at the tomb were faithfully announcing that Jesus was not there—He had RISEN, just as he said! Soteriology (=sa

Shall we dialogue on Sunday morning? Do you preach via monologue or dialogue?

These last few weeks have submerged me in the wonderful realm of preaching the Bible. More specifically, though, I've been grappling with the idea of expository preaching and if there is an occasion where "dialogue"—verbal, interactive dialogue—is acceptable during the Sunday morning church service (note my qualification of the Sunday morning service only; I deliberately have excluded such studies as the Sunday evening service, mid-week service, a home community group, etc.). In my thinking, reading, and consideration of God's Word, I am convinced that preaching via monologue is the best way to communicate on a Sunday morning. One of the quotes I came across was from Jack Hughes. Enjoy! Many pastors are struggling to keep their churches from becoming like the church of Sardis. They try biblical exposition, but something doesn’t seem to be working right. They faithfully preach the word, but contrary to the promise of God in Isaiah 55:11, the word of God seems to come b