Note: This article was originally published on ABWE’s blog. “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded … Continue reading Is ‘Obedience-Based Discipleship’ Biblical?
Once, after hearing a very gracious, gentle, nuanced pastor preach a particularly bold sermon warning against false teachers, I commented to him, “It’s good to see a vertebrate in the pulpit.” To my surprise, he replied, not skipping a beat, “I call it having evantesticles.” (He also knew that puns are my love language.) This … Continue reading How Not to Make Friends and Influence People
Issues of same-sex attraction, the Christian identity, and sexual orientation have once more made it to the fore, and a growing contingent of believers are wondering if the whole thing is a matter of semantics. Terms like “gay” and “orientation” used in the context of professing Christians have drawn much ire from various discernment voices. … Continue reading Against Concupiscence
There’s a running gag in our family that occurs every time we dine together as an extended family. My father, a creature of habit, always blesses the meal and thanks God “for the hands that prepared it”—covering all the bases, as it were. After the “amen,” my wife and mother frequently chime in that it … Continue reading The Futility of Thanksgiving
Whether we owe it to the spirit of the age or to the quirks of our own subculture, we evangelicals generally disdain labels. We prefer to be “Christ-followers,” not Christians; “gospel-centered,” not Baptist, Protestant, or Reformed. This isn’t always a bad thing. Labels carry baggage. And besides that, our primary commitment is to Scripture, not … Continue reading How Covenant Theology Clarifies Justice Issues
“Everyone we meet is on a spiritual journey.” I recently came across this statement printed on a brochure for an evangelistic Bible study. When I see language like this used in church and ministry contexts, my response is twofold. On one hand, it is true that we must start with the unbeliever on his own … Continue reading What Should We Do With ‘Persons of Peace’?
Blogging gets a bad rap. For some, it’s a hobby at best. For others, it’s an art, or even a divine calling. How should Christians approach this craft? My friend Benjamin Vrbicek, a far more gifted writer than me, is tackling some of these very questions in a forthcoming book for Christian writers. Benjamin’s most … Continue reading 7 Tips for Aspiring Christian Writers
Right now, conservative evangelicals are at an impasse on the issue of boldness. A few months ago, I observed that today there is greater stigma attached to speaking the truth in a tone that seems slightly unnerved or terse than speaking dangerous falsehoods sweetly, politely, and deferentially. A number of controversies over the last few … Continue reading The Source of Biblical Boldness
If you ever want to see what a room full of tired men looks like, go to the closest pastors’ conference. Of course, in any room full of pastors, you’re bound to find a mix, from fresh graduates to veterans, fauxhawks to receding hairlines—each gray head a crown for a lifetime of leadership and love. … Continue reading Hill Gods and Culture Wars du Jour
Ever since our exile from Eden, mankind has been in a mad dash after fig leaves like they’re going out of style. We trade divine approval for human head nods to relieve our inner shame. And in our evangelical empires, this often takes the form of avoiding “guilt by association” at all costs—lest the real … Continue reading Christian Politicking and Innocence By Association