Category Archives: Church Issues

Evangelicals and Catholics Explain What Marriage Is and Why It Matters

Time to look past past the misleading headlines and dig into the substance of the Evangelicals and Catholics Together statement on marriage.

Also posted in Christianity, Future of the Church, Life & Culture | | 11 Comments

Awesome God in a Boring Church

Is it possible that our worship services have become so much about ourselves that we find it difficult to “get outside” our “petty concerns?”

Also posted in Christianity | | 3 Comments

Why Mike Wittmer Thinks You Should Be a Worldly Saint

“Worldly Saints” may seem like an oxymoron, but it’s the perfect title for what God calls Christians to be.

Also posted in Book Reviews, Christianity, Interviews | | 1 Comment

Does Christianity Affirm or Deny the World? Yes!

Faithful Christian living involves a paradox: our faith is both world-affirming and world-denying. World-affirming in that we believe the world’s structures are fundamentally good, a part of God’s good creation now longing to be restored. World-denying in that we believe the world’s systems are pervasively evil, firmly opposed to God and His loving rule and awaiting His judgment.

Miss the goodness of the world structurally, and you start to think the physical creation is bad, so God must be going to do away with it all in the end. The Christian mission becomes “getting people to heaven,” since the world is going to the other place. Miss the badness of the world systemically, and you start to think sin is not as serious as we’ve made it out to be, so tinkering around with things in pursuit of improvement is all that is needed. The Christian mission becomes “make the world a better place.”

Careful Christian thinking holds these two truths in paradox, never allowing one truth to drown out the other, never allowing the extreme position of one side to lead us to the other. To miss one side of this paradox or the other is to distort the beauty of Christianity.

Becoming Worldly Saints by Michael Wittmer pushes even deeper, reminding us that world-affirming and world-denying Christianity are two sides of the same coin. We won’t deny what needs denying unless we affirm what needs affirming, and vice versa. After all, we were made for this world. “We are  earthlings, …

Also posted in Christianity, Theology | | 2 Comments

Revisiting 5 Evangelical Trends in This Decade: 2011-2020

At the beginning of this decade, I predicted several trends in evangelicalism. How are they playing out right now?

Also posted in Discipleship, Future of the Church | | 13 Comments

John R. Sampey and a Legacy of Christ-Centered Bible Study

In 1914, some were complaining that Sunday School lessons lacked a “redemptive” focus. Here’s what John Sampey proposed.

Also posted in Baptists, Christian Living, Discipleship, Discipleship - LifeWay, Seminary, Southern Baptist Convention | | Leave a comment

When Your Church is In Trouble: Tell the Truth, Face the Future

Now that I’ve assessed the state of my church and how it got here, how do I move forward with my congregation?

Also posted in Christianity, Uncategorized | | 1 Comment

Assessing the State of Your Church and How It Got There

If a pastor walks into a church and seeks to understand “what time it is” organizationally, what kind of diagnosis should he expect?

Also posted in Christianity, Future of the Church | | 1 Comment

Would You Skip Church for Football?

A whopping 83% of churchgoers say, “Nope. I won’t skip worship to watch football.”

Also posted in Christianity, Uncategorized | | 14 Comments

Your Mind is a Spin Machine

Our moral thinking is much more like a politician searching for votes than a scientist searching for truth.

Also posted in Christian Living, Christianity, Life & Culture, Politics | | 6 Comments