He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things?" - Romans 8:32

Friday, July 31, 2009 

Want to Reach the Nations: Go to UAB

UAB Ranks No. 3 in the Nation for Student Diversity in Princeton Review’s “Best Colleges”.

UAB also ranked No. 11 nationally for having the "Happiest Students," a list in the Quality of Life category.

So you see, joy + Kingdom Advancement = UAB.

Friday, July 24, 2009 

Creative & Convicting - Isaiah 58

Jon Foreman, lead singer of Switchfoot, also has some great solo stuff out there (shout out to Kevin Qualls!). This song is basically the idea of Isaiah 58 set to music.

I hate all your show and pretense
the hypocrisy of your praise
the hypocrisy of your festivals
I hate all your show

Away with your noisy worship
Away with your noisy hymns
I stop up my ears when your
singing ‘em
I hate all your show

Instead let there be a flood
of justice
An endless procession of righteous
living, living
Instead let there be a flood
of justice
Instead of a show

your eyes are closed when you’re praying
you sing right along with the band
you shine up your shoes for services
but there’s blood on your hands

you turned your back on the homeless
and the ones that don’t fit in your plans
quit playing religion games
there’s blood on your hands

Ah! let’s argue this out
if your sins are blood red
let’s argue this out
you’ll be white as the clouds
let’s argue this out
quit fooling around

give love to the ones who can’t love at all
give hope to the ones who got no hope at all
stand up for the ones who can’t stand up at all
instead of a show
I hate all your show

Wednesday, July 08, 2009 

Twisted Half-Truths

We appeal to men as if they had all the ability to receive Christ at any time; we speak of His redeeming work as if He had done no more by dying than make it possible for us to save ourselves by believing; we speak of God’s love as if it were no more than a general willingness to receive any who will turn and trust; and we depict the Father and Son, not as sovereignly active in drawing sinners to themselves, but as waiting in quiet impotence “at the door of our hearts” for us to let them in...

It needs to be said with emphasis that this set of twisted half-truths is something other than the biblical gospel. The Bible is against us when we preach in this way; and the fact that such preaching has become almost standard practice among us only shows how urgent it is that we should review this matter. To recover the old, authentic, biblical gospel, & to bring our preaching & practice back into line with it, is perhaps our most pressing present need.

- J.I. Packer, In My Place Condemned He Stood, pp.113-14

Tuesday, July 07, 2009 

Stop Thinking About Yourself!

Dear Me:

The glory of the Gospel is that it was accomplished outside of us on the Cross and that the righteousness that counts for me in heaven before the Holy Judge is a righteousness outside of me. Christ is my righteousness. In Christ his righteousness is commended to the Father. I stand clothed in Christ—his righteousness is my only hope.

One of the hardest things in dealing with introverted, introspective, depressed, and insecure people who every time you give them a promise divert this way and deflect that way and can’t wear it. Ultimately, there is only one answer for them—the miracle : “Would you please stop thinking about yourself? Lets pray that God will set you free from the curse of the condemning mirror and begin to think of Christ.

Your measuring up will never happen on planet earth. You will never be good enough. Ever, ever, ever. Relax, you will never be good enough. There is One who has been good enough and only One. And He has died as to climax to that obedience such that your sins have been taken and the righteousness you so long to have has been provided perfectly in Christ before the Holy Judge.

God looks you upon it and says ”I count you perfect and all that are in you my Son and you may be in Him by simply falling on Him.”

- John Piper

Saturday, July 04, 2009 

Allowed to Raise Some Missions Questions?

Jonathan Leeman writes:

A country can only export what it manufactures. That's a pretty basic principle. But now apply that principle to the topic of missions: if generations of American churches have been characterized by pragmatic church growth principles, what would you expect to see characterizing their overseas missions endeavors?

Okay, so maybe American missions work is driven by the same kind of pragmatism that characterizes so many American churches. Is that really such a big deal? Well, stop and consider the differences between planting pragmatically-driven churches in America versus planting them in most Majority World contexts. Such churches in America have the luxury of building themselves upon the foundations of a culture imbued with several hundred years of Christian influence and ethical norms. Fill a room with nominal Christians, as pragmatically-driven churches do, and you still have a dame that looks half way decent. She'll dress up alright.

Now build that same church with those same pragmatic principles, yielding once again a room filled with nominal Christians, but do it in a country with strong traditions in polygamy, or animal sacrifice, or ancestor worship, or Islamic chauvinism, or Hindu castes, or nepotistic social structures, or so on. Build it on the shoulders of leaders who didn't grow up in Sunday School and were not groomed in seminary classrooms with tall genealogical trees, where orthodoxy, even if it's doubted, has been defended in book after book after book. What should we expect of this church? I've been around the Majority World block enough times to suspect something very different, indeed.

Philip Jenkins and now others have checked the stats and told us that global Christianity is moving South and East. But are they talking about "Christians" saved by grace alone through faith alone in Christ alone? Some would probably tell me that these questions are rooted in arrogant, West-centric assumptions. But am I allowed to raise questions?

- I say Amen to those questions & post it to peek your interest to this heartily recommended e-journal from 9Marks

Friday, July 03, 2009 

Men be Men: Do Missions

Danny Akin in one of his messages at the SBC annual meeting:

“How is it that this spiritual crime is being so perpetuated? Who is guilty of this sin being perpetuated? Too much of the fault falls at the feet of men. Recently, I did some research and discovered that, among our wonderful Journeyman program, today the International Mission Board has 331 journey girls on the field, but only 126 men. There are 2 1/2 times more of our sisters on the mission field as there are our brothers.

I was informed a couple of months ago that in West Africa, one ofour most difficult regions, there are today 50 journeymen—48 are females, only two are men. You say, “Where are the men?” They are sitting at home in their boxer shorts and T-shirts playing video games—that is where the men are. The fact of the matter today is that the median age of those who are addicted to those things (video games) is 34 years old.

“Gentlemen, what are we not doingto inspire our sons and grandsons to dream of doing something great for Jesus? What is it we’re not doing that would cause them to want to give their life for Christ and the nations and put their life on the line for that which really matters? You say, ‘This is a new phenomenon.” No, unfortunately it is not; when Lottie Moon (Southern Baptists’ most famous missionary, a woman who labored in China in the late 19th century) was on the mission field and she would write back home, she would write some scathing letters.

Here is just one of them: “I am trying to do the work that could fill the hands of three or four women and in addition, I am doing the work that ought to be done by young men. I must add that the work is suffering and will continue to suffer for the want of a man living on the spot.”

- from Jeff Robinson at The Gender Blog

Wednesday, July 01, 2009 

9Marks E-Journal on MISSIONS


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