But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.  1 Peter 3: 14-16

For the Church - Apologetic Report
Wednesday, 16 August 2017 15:15

From Mumbling to Singing

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We all know the feeling of standing in a corporate worship setting where it seems the congregation has replaced singing with mumbling. Maybe some of us have been mumblers ourselves. I’ve even experienced this in settings in which good doctrine is being sung. In these situations, pastors and...

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Wednesday, 16 August 2017 15:10

3 Things I Know About Church Planting

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Since revealing the news that I’m going to be planting a church, I’ve been asked several times, “How does that even work?” “Do you even have a building yet?” “Who will come?” If I'm honest, part of me wants to give them all the answers as if I...

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Wednesday, 16 August 2017 15:05

The Advantages of On-Campus Seminary

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This week is significant for many seminaries across the country. Orientations, student move-ins, and syllabi abound. A year and a half ago, I sat in a banquet hall, hearing the ins and outs of what seminary life would be like, and wondered if I'd made the right decision in uprooting our...

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Tuesday, 15 August 2017 15:05

A Beautiful Union For Broken Hearts

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I will never forget my first heart break.

One moment still vividly comes to mind. I curled up on the couch, laid my head in my best friend’s lap, and tears poured for what seemed like hours. The thought struck me then, that I used to lay my head in my parents’ laps when I was scared or...

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Tuesday, 15 August 2017 15:00

Sunday is End-Times Warfare

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Mrs. Spencer sits in her pew, the same one she sits in every week, and takes out her Bible. She knows the time will come when the pastor will announce today’s text. Until then, she waits. The “Welcome” does not really apply to her because the young pastor wants to make the guests...

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Monday, 14 August 2017 15:15

What Church Revitalization Really Means

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Four times a year, the Oxford English Dictionary updates its entries, adding hundreds of words each year. Long the gold standard of the dictionary world, the OED has to update quarterly because of the massive influx of words created today. Words or phrases that, twenty years ago, would be...

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Monday, 14 August 2017 15:10

An Arranged Marriage

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It’s a fascinating story. A father sends his servant on a trip of over 500 miles to find, convince, and retrieve a bride for his son. The servant goes and carries out the wishes of his master. Through much providence, God leads the servant to identify “the one.” “The...

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Monday, 14 August 2017 15:05

A Shack to Impress God

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I mean that the heir, as long as he is a child, is no different from a slave, though he is the owner of everything, but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by his father. In the same way we also, when we were children, were enslaved to the elementary principles of the...

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Sunday, 13 August 2017 15:15

Hijacked by the Gospel

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Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own.—Philippians 3:12 (ESV)

"Christ Jesus took hold of me" (NIV)

"Christ Jesus first possessed me" (NLT)

"I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus" (NASB)

"I am...

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Sunday, 13 August 2017 15:05

Who Are You, Lord?

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And they came to Bethsaida. And some people brought to him a blind man and begged him to touch him. And he took the blind man by the hand and led him out of the village, and when he had spit on his eyes and laid his hands on him, he asked him, “Do you see anything?” And he looked up and...

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Sunday, 13 August 2017 15:00

Links For The Church (8/14)

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4 Reasons Why You Shouldn't Teach Your Kids to be Colorblind

Trillia Newbell proposes that children shouldn't be taught to ignore color, but to celebrate it and become colorsmart. She writes that though sin builds divides within races, the gospel is for all people of all colors. 

The...

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Saturday, 12 August 2017 15:15

I Will Remember My Covenant

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"And I will remember my covenant."-- Genesis 9:15

Mark the form of the promise. God does not say, "And when ye shall look upon the bow, and ye shall remember my covenant, then I will not destroy the earth," but it is gloriously put, not upon our memory, which is fickle and frail, but upon God's...

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Thursday, 10 August 2017 15:10

Worship as a Feast

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I love to eat. There’s nothing like going to a new restaurant to enjoy all of the delicacies the chef spent the day prepping and cooking fresh for me. I love it when the meal is balanced with seasonings, spices, and textures that satisfy your palate as well as your hunger. I love the...

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Thursday, 10 August 2017 15:05

The Grace That Saves Also Sustains

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My iPhone has an app on it that measures how much I exercise. Some days, I do really well and the app plots a point near the top of a graph. Other days, I don’t do so well and the app plots a point near the bottom of the graph. Most weeks, my graph looks like a roller coaster ride with some...

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My son just turned three and is in the stage of life where his response to everything I say is “why?”. Sometimes I have patience and calmly explain something for the hundredth time, yet other times my patience wears thin and my response is “because, buddy, that’s just how it...

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Wednesday, 09 August 2017 15:15

The Weight of Pastoral Glory

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“I am not able to carry all this people alone; the burden is too heavy for me.” - Numbers 11:14

I am called to pastor. I love God. I love the church. I love the Scriptures.

I am called to pastor, but sometimes, I wish I was not.

I love the people in my congregation. Some might...

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Did I Make the Right Decision? 

Some days I wonder. 

Toward the end of my MDiv, I was planning to apply for a PhD program to continue my education. But, the closer I got toward graduation, the more deeply I sensed a call into the local church. This crystalized one night over dinner with my...

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In September we did something crazy: we planted a church on the other side of our city.

Or maybe that doesn’t sound crazy. But hold on. We planted by literally dividing our church in half, and we did this as a relatively small and young church.

We didn’t grow to 800 and send out 30. Our...

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Tuesday, 08 August 2017 15:05

I've Been Dancing With Her Ever Since

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A good man leaves an inheritance to his children’s children… Proverbs 13:22

Stories are powerful. They have a unique way of speaking to us and shaping who we are. Stories are indeed a means of discipleship. That is why I believe storytelling is essential to the flourishing of...

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Tuesday, 08 August 2017 15:00

Seeing and Preaching the Gospel of Jesus in Jonah

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I have occasionally written on the importance of seeing the Gospel of Jesus in the Old Testament–specifically seeing God's plan of redemption woven throughout biblical history–all of which point ultimately to the birth, death, and resurrection of Christ. But in the past,...

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Monday, 07 August 2017 15:15

The Pulpit Call

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You’ve probably been there.

Whether it’s in a big stadium while attending a conference, or a small, rural church while attending a church service, most of you have experienced what many have nicknamed “The Altar Call.” The preacher has just gotten up and spent thirty or forty...

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Americans have lost their way on what is considered to be right and wrong. According to a recent poll by Gallup, about half or more of all Americans believe that abortion, homosexuality, and sex outside of marriage aren’t sinful. But the trend isn't new.

Even in early Christianity,...

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Monday, 07 August 2017 15:05

Brothers, We Are Not Amateurs

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Few men have shaped the 21st-century church more than John Piper, and few of his books have proven more helpful than his Brothers, We are not Professionals. Piper was right. Ministers are not to be professionals, and his call for radical, sacrificial, selfless ministry is spot on. Yet, when it...

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Sunday, 06 August 2017 15:15

Jesus Never Ends

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Jesus is patient and kind; he is not envious or boastful; he's not arrogant or rude.

He did not insist on his own way but following his Father's will, left the glory of heaven to empty himself and serve us and sacrifice himself for us.

Jesus isn't irritable or resentful.

And Jesus keeps no record of...

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Sunday, 06 August 2017 15:05

70 Prompts for Praising God

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A list of praise-worthy truths—to You, God:

  1. The world changes, but the Christian hope stays the same (Heb. 13:8).
  2. You are present to protect us—guiding us straight through this life to eternal joy (Ps. 16:11).
  3. Even before we fell, You had plans to lift us up in Christ (1 Pet. 1:20; Eph....

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