Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Five Kinds Of Deep Preaching

How many times have we heard parishoners say they are not being spiritually "fed" by the preaching in their home church? Scott Chapman does us all a favor by addressing the issue in his article,"Five Kinds of Deep Preaching".

Lets see how each of us fare by placing Chapman's grid over the message we last preached. Read the entire article for an explanation of his points.


>Biblical Depth

>Intellectual Depth

>Experiential Depth

>Cultural Depth

>Application Depth


Thursday, July 8, 2010

Offending the Bible- Believing Religious

Ouuuuuuuuch! Tim Keller is a prophetic truth teller in this assessment.

"Jesus' teaching consistently attracted the irreligious while offending the Bible-believing, religious people of His day.

However, in the main, our churches today do not have this effect.

The kind of outsiders Jesus attracted do not bother coming to our churches, even our most avant-garde ones. We tend to draw buttoned-down, moralistic people. The licentious and liberated or the broken and marginal avoid church.

That can only mean one thing.

If the preaching of our ministers and the practice of our parishioners do not have the same effect on people that Jesus had, then we must not be declaring the same message that Jesus did."

- Dr. Tim Keller


Monday, July 5, 2010

Churches Grapple With Welcoming Sex Offenders

Back in May I did a post about the conflicting topic of sex offenders that is increasingly confronting the local church. While many ministers would like to be simply dismissive of the issue or just flatly deny that it is a pressing issue for congregants, our culture is unwilling to do either. For this I am truly grateful.

The Saturday headline of the Washington Post read,"Churches grapple with whether to welcome convicted sex offenders". My brothers, we Ignore this issue to the peril of the innocent and vulnerable among us. Note that I took the liberty to highlight two significant portions for emphasis.


"All are welcome" is a common phrase on many a church sign and Web site. But what happens when a convicted sex offender is at the door?

Church officials and legal advocates are grappling with how -- and whether -- people who have been convicted of sex crimes should be included in U.S. congregations, especially when children are present:

-- Last month, a lawyer argued in the New Hampshire Supreme Court for a convicted sex offender who wants to attend a Jehovah's Witnesses congregation with a chaperone.

"What we argued is that the right to worship is a fundamental right and the state can only burden it if it has compelling interest to do so, and then only in a way that is narrowly constructed," said Barbara Keshen, a New Hampshire Civil Liberties Union attorney for Jonathan Perfetto, who pleaded guilty in 2002 to 61 counts of possessing child pornography.

-- On Monday, the Seventh-day Adventist Church added language to its manual saying that sexual abuse perpetrators can be restored to members only if they do not have unsupervised contact with children and are not "in a position that would encourage vulnerable individuals to trust them implicitly." Garrett Caldwell, a spokesman for the denomination, said the new wording in the global guidelines tries to strike a balance between protecting congregants and supporting the religious freedom of abusers in "a manifestation of God's grace."

-- On Thursday, a law took effect in Georgia that permits convicted sex offenders to volunteer in churches if they are isolated from children. Permitted activities include singing in the choir and taking part in Bible studies and bake sales.

The Rev. Madison Shockley, pastor of Pilgrim United Church of Christ in Carlsbad, Calif., which publicly grappled with whether to accept a convicted sex offender three years ago, said he hears from churches several times a month seeking advice on how to handle such situations.

"The key lesson for churches is this: The policy, however it winds up, must be a consensus of the congregation," Shockley said. "I talked to so many pastors who decided they're going to make the decision because they know what's theologically and spiritually right -- and that's absolutely the wrong thing to do."

Shockley's church will soon commission a minister to address the prevention of child sex abuse; the church also distributes a 20-page policy on protecting children and dealing with sex offenders....

Read the full article:


Equipping The Saints With Focused Gender Distinction

The new 9Marks eJournal addresses relevant topics associated with Pastoring Women.Here are some of the highlighs and click on thier site for the full journal.

> Why Complementarianism is Crucial to Discipleship
> How Pastors Can Equip Women for Ministry
> Older Women Discipling Younger Women
> Wise Words for Young Mothers