Psalm 34:8

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It’s a Sad Day in the SBC

So Paige Patterson is now President Emeritus at @swbts.

It’s a sad day in @sbc land, as the trustees merely expedited his retirement and gave him all the benefits, including another title (Theologian in Residence) and a free place to live for the rest of his life.

Their decision is less than a slap on the wrist for his tasteless, irresponsible remarks, and possible criminal behavior (from his time at SEBTS). The trustees’ vote says a great deal about their devotion to Patterson as opposed to their devotion to Jesus and the SBC (and common decency!).

If only the @sbc would rescind their invitation for him to preach at next month’s annual meeting…. (But I’m not holding my breath).

God, forgive us as a denomination! Extend your grace and mercy as we are so undeserving!

(Note: I posted this on Facebook a few minutes ago 5/23/18)
 

Can & Should You Take The Bible Literally? Inerrantly? All of it? Some of it? Which portions? Why?

Such was the question posted by a Facebook Friend. It’s a great question — or series of questions. Here’s my response to his post.

 

For an “academic” answer to your question, I’m an inerrantist. I take it at face value as I read it, trying to take into account the author’s original message to the original audience in the original historical context in the genre it was written. And – not wanting to get into a translation debate – this requires that you use a modern language translation if you don’t know the original languages.

History (much of the OT, the Gospels and Acts) describes what happened.
Didactic (teaching like we find in the NT epistles) prescribes how things are supposed to happen.
Poetry (Psalms) uses imagery and figures of speach.
Apocalyptic (parts of Daniel and Revelation) uses very picturesque language and more figures of speech.

We can easily run into problems when we read an apocalyptic or history passage through a didactic lens. Taking into account the context (historical, culture, and genre) — as best as possible – will give us a proper theological framework to understand the passage in question.

Having said all of this, you don’t have to be an academicians, have a bunch of advanced degrees, and be fluent in the original languages to get the message God wants you to hear.

Adding to what [another commenter] said above, read [the Bible] as a love letter from a holy, merciful, just, gracious God Who relentlessly pursues His people in covenant.

 

Just as I posted my response, I saw an excellent article that was linked by the commentor. You may want tocheck it out!

Annual Church Egg Hunt Was a Success!

2018 Egg Hunt We had a great time flying kites and hunting eggs on the front lawn of our church this morning! As always, we had a breeze and the sun made the day absolutely beautiful!

Everybody’s baskets were overflowing to the point that we had to provide additional bags to hold the almost 1000 eggs collected by kids young and old!

2018 Egg HuntNext, we gathered under our front porch and I presented the Easter Story, using Resurrection Eggs. Finally, everybody enjoyed hot dogs, chips, and cookies.

Yes, it was a great time and we were glad for the turnout! We hope to see many more people at our next annual egg hunt!

A Small Tribute to Billy Graham

I have watched many people give their tribute to “America’s Pastor”, Billy Graham. Tears have welled up in my eyes as I have heard TV News Show hosts tell about how their lives have been affected by Dr. Graham. Some even used their celebrity to preach the Gospel. On TV.

This is my tribute.

During my Junior Year(?) at UNC-Chapel Hill, several student ministries began to meet together to plan for Billy Graham to come deliver a “lecture series” in Carmichael Auditorium (where basketball games were played back in the day). It was during that time that I witnessed a secret key of the success of Dr. Graham’s ministry.

Leighton Ford was Billy Graham’s brother-in-law and was involved in Billy’s ministry. Leighton’s son Sandy (Graham’s nephew) had been a student at UNC-CH. Sandy underwent surgery for a rare heart disease in November, 1981 and died soon after his surgery. He had just turned 21. I heard that Sandy had been involved in InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, which probably laid the foundation for the rest of this story.

My timing may be off, but as I remember it, about two years later, a former roommate of mine was asked to spearhead the lecture series. He coordinating with student leaders of InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, The Navigators, and Campus Crusade for Christ. I was involved with “Crusade” throughout college, though not the particular event. But even as an outsider to the event, I saw a glimpse of behind-the-scenes picture that few others in America have ever seen, or known of.

This “secret”, “behind-the-scenes” “key to the success of Billy Graham’s ministry was very simple. At the conclusion of each lecture, an altar call would be given and students would begin making their way down to the area in front of the platform. The first students who began to “walk the aisle” were not going down to the floor-level of the auditorium to be saved. Instead, these were the students who were already Believers and had been trained on how to lead another student to Christ. They were the students who would help new converts to complete the information on the “contact cards” and turn them in to other event-coordinated students. Then the magic happened.

Dr. Graham insisted that every student who made a decision and filled out the contact information on the card be contacted in person by a another student who had been trained in follow-up. Within 24 hours. Every day of the event. There were thousands of students in Carmichael Auditorium each night.

This “secret” wasn’t the crowds that made decisions. The secret was that the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association was about making disciples, not counting decisions. The key isn’t getting someone to pray a prayer, walk an aisle, or be baptized. The key was that the decisions being made weren’t the end of the ministry; they were the beginning of the ministry. The goal was to plug these decision-makers into the ministries sponsoring the event so that the new converts would become disciples.

I have heard that the follow-up plan used on our campus was the same that was used wherever Billy Graham preached.

 

For this, among other things, I thank God for the Biblical wisdom of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association.

 

 

The Real Problem of Mass Murders

Pray for Parkland
 

Dare I say it?
 

It isn’t a “Gun Problem”.

Really, it’s not.
Prove it? Sure! Genesis 4:8 – Cain didn’t kill Able with a gun. We don’t know how he did it; we just know he did it. He did it before guns were invented. And he did it long before the founding of the NRA.
 

It isn’t a “Mental Health Problem”.

Really, it’s not.
Yes, mental illness is a real thing. Mental illness can be mild, or it can be very ugly. And yes, we need to be concerned about those who are not mentally healthy. But not all mentally unhealthy people have psychotic tendencies. And not all killers are mentally ill.
 

It isn’t a “Public Schools Problem”.

Really, it’s not. Neither is it a “Video Games Problem” or a “TV Violence Problem”.
 
 

It’s a Spiritual Problem; it’s a Heart Problem.

At the very deep root level, it really is!

And we will continue to see violent outbursts and murder unless/until hearts — not laws — are changed.

2Chronicles 7:14
And lest someone say that this Bible passage was written only to Israel and Judah and America: yes, I agree. But there is a practical application to any and all whom God calls “My people”. He invites us to pray. And He promises to answer.
 

So let’s pray.

 
 

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