Weekly Once-Over (09.18.2014)

Look And Live: From one who bears the fang-shaped scar, I urge you this weekend to attend corporate worship not merely to sing or merely to listen, but to look — to gaze. Look and live.

You Can't Catch Sin Like A Cold: So, when we are around obvious sin, those people and places, we can’t catch their sin. We can choose their sin, but that is a matter of decision, of belief, of theology. If we hold fast to Jesus there is no risk of that sin invisibly taking hold of us like a flu bug might. How freeing! We no longer have to keep our distance or live in cultural quarantine. We can engage those people with grace and freedom without fear. Because we are near Jesus we can be near to anyone without fear that they will make us more like them than like Him.

Theological Impatience: Theological impatience is one of the most troubling features of our generation. Examples of impatience in everyday life abound – measuring your progress against that of the person in the adjacent supermarket queue, tutting at the slowness of a microwave dinner – but far more inisidious is the way this everyday impatience now manifests itself in the way we do theology. Assuming, as we are often told, “the means is the message” (that is, the physical way in which you communicate something forms an important part of what you communicate), we would expect that: if theology is done in blog comments and tweets and Facebook posts, then it would be surprising if that did not make us theologically impatient.

Biblical verses Systematic Theology?: This is what gives Systematic Theology its finality. Biblical Theology asks, What did the patriarchs say, or Moses, or the prophets or Paul or John? Systematic Theology asks, What does the Bible say?

What Is The 'Abomination of Desolation'?: A wise preacher dealing with this passage may find particular value in focusing on this point. When Jesus gives instruction concerning future events, his purpose is not to satiate our curiosity or answer all or our speculative questions. Instead, his purpose is to protect and guide and instruct his people. Jesus gave relatively little attention to the question "When?" and much toward the question "How shall we live faithfully?" Preaching on such texts today should be shaped by Jesus’ concern for the welfare and endurance of his church.

Christianity Is Not Going Away: The quiet religious revival in New York City is mostly below the radar screen. But it showcases how Christendom, although it ebbs and flows, after 1700 or so years, is not going away.

Friendless Millennials In A Digital Age: She is hitting the nail square on its head. Young people vaguely know about stuff, but they often do not truly know those around them. Much of that comes from our connectedness on the Internet, and specifically social media.

A Failure Of Worship: The addict is not merely following deeply-ingrained habits and physical desires, but seeking the escstasy of worship. The problem is not the desire to worship—we are created to be worshippers—but the idolatrous object of that worship. The addict looks elsewhere—anywhere—for what can be found only in God. The addict’s foremost failure is a failure of worship.

Should We Kiss Evangelism Goodbye?: What my dad and mom thought about me as I was growing up meant a lot. Their thoughts and opinions could crush or lift me in a moment. The truth is that we seek approval from others all the time. As you get to know someone, you might pick up that they need to hear the gospel of adoption, that God the Father offers an undying approval in his Son Jesus. This can radically change people’s view of God, and thrill them with the hope of a Father’s love. Don’t kiss your evangelism goodbye; just give it a facelift.

Kids And Missional Communities - Family Meals: Sometimes families feel like they shouldn’t hold their Family Meal on Sundays, since we’ve already done one church event that day. But there’s no such thing as too much church family on one day, and many of our Missional Communities have found great success with a Family Meal that starts at 5pm on Sundays.


photo credit: JohRo2012 via photopin cc