Archive for the ‘ Preaching ’ Category

Citizen Behavior: The Christian Call To Obedience (Part 1)

Last Sunday we looked two short verses; Philippians 2:12-13.  Yet, despite their shortness we saw that Paul packed some weighty truth deep within his words.

Paul called for the Philippian believers to live our their lives of obedience in a particular manner.  They were to “work out their own salvation” realizing “it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.”

Heavenly Citizens are to be marked by obedience which means they work out their own salvation.  The fact that God works in us to desire this and then gives us the power to grow like Jesus is meant to produce hope that chance can actually happen.

We are to kill sin and grow like Jesus.  Yet, this is fueled by the Spirit of God who uses our “working out our salvation” as the means by which He brings our salvation “to completion at the day of Jesus Christ” (Phil. 1:6).

You can follow this link to hear the audio.

This Sunday we will look to Philippians 2:14-18 and see Paul draw to a conclusion his last exhortation to right gospel behavior.


God, Marriage, and Family :: Galatians

I am working through some new books right now.  The spring semester is over and my summer classes won’t kick up until late June.  So, to take advantage of a couple of weeks break in my class reading I am taking in these books:

God, Marriage, and Family: Rebuilding the Biblical Foundation
by Andreas Kostenberger and David W. Jones

Galatians – Reformed Expository Commentary
by Phillip Graham Ryken

God, Marriage, and Family is a must read.  Kostenberger and Jones handle the subjects with great scholarly care, yet they temper their writings with a gentle pastoral hand.  Very easy to read and a great encouragement for the Christian of what marriage and family ought to be based upon the Scriptures.

Phillip Ryken’s commentary is a great commentary for the book of Galatians.  It flows in the vein of expositional commentaries and makes a great compliment for the person working through this book in their devotional time.  Easy to read, yet in depth and very helpful.  Ligonier Ministries rated this commentary in the #1 spot in their best commentaries blog series.  I highly recommend.

Teach Your Children Well

Check out these two sermons by Alistair Begg.  If you don’t normally listen to Alistair Begg he is a scottish pastor preaching in Cleveland, OH.  Begg preaches expositionally coupled with great wisdom and insight.

In these two sermons he looks at Proverbs 22:6, “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.”

His preaching on this matter is encouraging and piercing all at the same time.  You will definitely find yourself thanking God for the encouragement to stay the right course in your child rearing, and you will find yourself thanking God for the correction to your child rearing that will come from his teaching.

Take time and listen, you will not be disappointed.

Teach Your Children Well, Part 1
Teach Your Children Well, Part 2

Paid Loafers and Social Parasites

Below is a quote concerning how a gospel preacher should spend his time.  He is to devote himself to the full labor of study, prayer, and preaching.  I find myself agreeing with the quote, but stopping to give pause to this one sentence:

If we devote ourselves to this labor, there will be little time or energy for other things.

Now, it is true, lazy preachers that milk the pulpit for monetary gain, and neglect their duty of being a workman for God are in err.  But my question is how far is this to go?  The quote seems to imply that a gospel preacher is to have no to very, very little recreation time.  A work ethic of this nature would seem to inevitably lead a gospel preacher down the road to a ruined family, and a burned out ministry.

What do you think (especially my minister friends)?  Is an 8 to 5 mindset right, studying with a purpose during these hours so you can have family time, recreation time, etc. the right path?  Or should you be devoting yourselves to this labor so that “there will be little time or energy for other things?

I would also like to hear how you have struck the balance and weighed the issue as well (I have an idea in my head on what the right path should be, but I would like to hear your input nonetheless).

“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.” 2 Timothy 2:15

It is easy for preachers to become paid loafers and social parasites, wasting their days in pleasure, recreation, and bumming around with open palms and an expectant look. Sadly, the religious hucksters and hirelings of the world have earned their reputation. Let no gospel preacher do so!

The pastor has no boss within sight. He is not required to keep regular office hours. And no one checks up on him to be sure he is working. That is as it should be. Yet, the very fact that a church treats her pastor as she should, makes it possible for the pastor to abuse his office, neglect his work, give himself to idleness, or to providing luxuries for himself and his family; when he should give himself relentlessly to study, and prayer, and preaching. If we devote ourselves to this labor, there will be little time or energy for other things.

The Main Objective Of Preaching

The main objective of preaching is to expound Scripture so faithfully and relevantly that Jesus Christ is perceived in all his adequacy to meet human need . . . The preacher’s purpose is more than to unveil Christ; it is to unveil him that people are drawn to come to him and receive him.
– John Stott, Between Two Worlds