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
Thursday, 19 April 2018 21:45

Pastors Churches: Don't Celebrate Brokenness

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Have you noticed the latest buzz word tossed around Christian circles?

Brokenness.

Listen, and you will hear it. Songs in worship gatherings and on Christian radio contain it. Churches use it on their websites to describe their culture to potential visitors. Pastors and leaders stand on stage and...

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Prophecy can be perilous. Take the example from Ezekiel 13. God’s Word comes to Ezekiel to prophesy against the prophets of Israel: “Woe to the foolish prophets, says the Lord God, who follow their own spirit and have seen nothing!” (13:3). These false prophets say...

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Wednesday, 18 April 2018 15:15

The Leader and Abuse of Power

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In Matthew 4, Jesus was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. Throughout the account, the nature of Satan’s temptation is toward the abuse of power.

Satan first entices Jesus to turn a stone into bread. Jesus had fasted for forty days up to this point. His...

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Wednesday, 18 April 2018 15:10

Navigating Through Difficult Seasons

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Apparently, I’m middle-aged. At least that’s what the folks who categorize these things tell me. As I move deeper into middle-agedom, I’ve slowed down. I’ve lost hair. I talk about the good old days more and I have a growing desire to yell “get off my lawn” for...

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I just watched the new Rob Bell documentary. It’s entitled The Heretic. Here’s a better title for it: The Fundamentalist: Rob Bell Walks Through Airports. I’ll explain what I mean below, and encourage you to look for the early April podcast I just recorded with Isaac...

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Tuesday, 17 April 2018 15:05

God’s Shepherding Ability

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Ever struggle to make decisions? I sure do. Recently, someone came to me for advice on making a pretty big decision in their life, and I want to share with you a key thought that came out of the conversation.

Here it is: “Have more confidence in God’s shepherding ability than in your...

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Tuesday, 17 April 2018 15:05

Living By The Prophet's Words

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Prophets like Moses and Paul, John and Isaiah had amazing encounters with the Lord. But we are to step out in faith without having similar experiences. You should not expect that God has to prove that what has been written is required of us by an additional vision, appearance, voice, or impression.

W...

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Monday, 16 April 2018 15:15

Be Countercultural and Enjoy Your Work

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The Bible in its ancient context was a profoundly countercultural document. Its creation account revealed a single, omnipotent ruler. There were no shenanigans; there were no death matches with other gods. There was only Yahweh. It presented a lofty vision of humanity created in God’s own...

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Monday, 16 April 2018 15:10

Shooing Flies in the Pulpit

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I had a strange experience recently.

As I preached our 7:45 Sunday worship service, a fly buzzed up to the pulpit. He landed near my Bible. He jumped on the microphone. He sat on my shoulder. That thing was everywhere! The little fly was a big distraction.

I have preached in many churches where...

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Sunday, 15 April 2018 15:15

My Left Knee

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I hyper-extended my left knee playing pickup basketball 22 years ago. At that time it was the worst pain I’d ever experienced. (I have since had a kidney stone, and let me tell you: I’ll take the knee.) One moment I was guarding my man, and in the next, somehow he was jumping into my...

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Sunday, 15 April 2018 15:05

Drawing Near To God Through Sanctification

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Eve opened her eyes, surrounded by the lush green landscape that made up the garden where she and Adam had lived since being created. Everything was good. Life was spectacular. However, it wasn’t just the abundance of plant life and animals that made their life so good. They were in the...

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Sunday, 15 April 2018 15:05

Links For The Church (4/16)

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The Powerful Purpose of Marriage

Tish Hedger helps us view marriage "from God's vantage point." She explains "oneness" through a scriptural overview. 

Worry: A Barometer of Our Faith 

Worry shows us what we believe about God and who we are. Michael Kelley writes this helpful post on how to...

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Saturday, 14 April 2018 15:15

God's People Need Lifting Up

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"Lift them up forever."-- Psalm 28:9

God's people need lifting up. They are very heavy by nature. They have no wings, or, if they have, they are like the dove of old which lay among the pots; and they need divine grace to make them mount on wings covered with silver, and with feathers of yellow...

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Thursday, 12 April 2018 15:05

The Beatitudes for Today

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Matthew 5:3–12 “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be...

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Thursday, 12 April 2018 15:05

The Quiet Faithful Life of Ruth Lee

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Ruth Lee.

I’ve heard that name since I can remember remembering. My sister was given her middle name because of Ruth Lee. Her name is echoed in our family stories and probably will be until the day I die.

She was the thin-framed woman who lived across the street from the wild Knefley family. My...

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Wednesday, 11 April 2018 15:15

Preachers, Let's Stop Stepping on Toes

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I grew up in a context where the preacher was expected to “step on toes.” If you didn’t step on toes, you weren’t really preaching. However, I started to understand that stepping on toes was nothing more than behavior modification. I found that it was easy, sometimes sinful,...

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I hope you will find out that we have not failed the test. But we pray to God that you may not do wrong—not that we may appear to have met the test, but that you may do what is right, though we may seem to have failed. For we cannot do anything against the truth, but only for the...

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Wednesday, 11 April 2018 15:05

Men, God’s Control, and Self-Control

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Twenty-five years of counseling has led me to realize that many people spend ninety-five percent of their energy focusing on things they cannot control and five percent of their energy focused on the things they can control. A major key to living with joy, contentment,...

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Tuesday, 10 April 2018 15:05

The Gospel and Your Time

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We live in an age where adults are trying to stop the unstoppable—the onward march of time. With only so many hours in a day and a limited amount of years in a lifetime, preserving and elongating one’s life has become high priority through trends like extreme fitness, nutritional...

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Tuesday, 10 April 2018 15:05

9 Spurgeon Quotes on Fear and Faith

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According to Charles Spurgeon (here and here), Psalm 56:3—“When I am afraid, I put my trust in you”—holds a tension and, yet, a resolve that is uniquely characteristic of the Christian’s experience of fear. 

1. Spurgeon gives voice to inner complexities.

Notice,...

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Tuesday, 10 April 2018 15:05

How We Ought To Speak

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The book of Colossians has much to say regarding the speech of those who are now in Christ. As God's chosen people, there is a clear and biblical manner in which we ought to speak. Paul tells the church at Colossae to put away slander, obscene talk, and to abstain from lying...

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Monday, 09 April 2018 15:15

Grocery Store Theology

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When you walk into most grocery stores, the very first section you come to is the fruit and vegetable section. I don’t know why this is. I have heard that grocery stores will purposely place the “must have” items in the back so that people have to walk the whole store to get them....

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Monday, 09 April 2018 15:10

How Do You Evaluate a Pastor?

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I recently read an interesting comment by a seminary president about the ministry. He said that the hardest thing about being a pastor today is the confusion about what it means to be a pastor.

If this is true, and I wouldn’t rush to argue with him, think about how unsettling and unacceptable...

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Sunday, 08 April 2018 15:15

When the Real You Suddenly Shows Up

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"And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand."-- Mark 3:25

It seems every week now brings with it a new revelation of a pastor's or other evangelical leader's moral implosion. Whether it's the next step in the seismic shifts of our culture's #MeToo moment or simply...

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Sunday, 08 April 2018 15:05

Humanity’s Fall and God’s Redemption

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Do you feel it – that gnawing desire for more that often diverts you onto a quest for contentment in all the wrong places? Maybe you feel that insatiable lust for attention or approval that enslaves you to vanity and fear of man? Maybe you feel that sideways glance mixed of envy and greed as...

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