Archives For Bible and Church

I was recently reading about Westboro Baptist Church and thinking to myself, “I wish they didn’t have ‘Baptist’ in their name.” The problem is that most people don’t understand how loosely knit, how varied, Baptist churches can be from each other.

Unlike some other Christian denominations, Baptists are autonomous and operate independently. This includes the massive number of churches gathered under the “Southern Baptist Convention” umbrella. Each church is run by it’s own local congregation, elects it’s own pastor and elders and can therefore vary drastically from one to another in both doctrine and organization.

So what does it mean to be a Baptist? Here are a few things: Continue Reading…

Some people, maybe you, consider the Bible to be a source of good advice. However, there are also plenty of examples of bad decision-making. For the class I teach we covered a few good examples and how we can learn from them.

In each of the cases below, the underlying premise is that God is the source of all wisdom and distancing ourselves from His council increases the chances of big mistakes. As a bonus, I’m including the notes from the follow-up class where we covered a few good examples to compliment the bad. Continue Reading…

My class last night seemed to enjoy an illustration I gave so I decided to share it here. The class is the first of 5 I will teach called “Getting a better spouse,” which is a poor name, but the goal is to make our families stronger by improving the husband and wife relationship. The common denominator of all the people in the class is that we all have kids and as any parent knows, sometimes life seems incredibly busy. Also at times it can feel like our kids are the center of our families and all life revolves around them.

As parents its critical to admit that one of our most important job is to raise our children properly (cf Proverbs 22:6, Deuteronomy 6:6-7). But that doesn’t mean the children become the center of the family. They need to learn that the world does not revolve around them. Therefore the class’s goal will hopefully help draw the mom and dad together. Doing this helps the whole family.

But… the husband/wife relationship is not the most important relationship in the family. The most important is the parent/God relationship. God invented the family and He

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The answer is simple. Don’t start by preaching, don’t start with morality. Don’t start by trying to be angelic. Start by caring for others. Jesus said,

34 “So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. 35 Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.” John 13:34-35

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The language of the Bible. Paul spoke Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic. Possibly other languages too, but these three we can be certain of. When he traveled around on his missionary journeys, he invariably came to visit people who did not speak one of those three languages. In these cases, one of two things happened – either God enabled the people to understand him (aka speaking in tongues – and by the way, this is the true meaning of tongues, not spouting gibberish as you roll around on the floor) or He provided an interpreter.

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Measure character

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The standard we are to measure by is the character of Christ, not the character of others. Paul had to address this problem in writing to the Corinthians: “We do not dare classify or compare ourselves with some who commend themselves. When they measure themselves by themselves they are not wise.”
From “The 33 laws of Stewardship” by Dave Sutherland and Kirk Nowery, chapter 20, The Law of Secret Spirituality.

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