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
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Technology is useful in the church. For example, I recently Skyped into my congregation’s Sunday gathering when I was too sick to attend. I was strengthened by what I heard, and they happily avoided my virus.

But technology is not valuable in every circumstance. I’m thinking particularly...

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Thursday, 27 April 2017 15:00

Ordinary is Big Enough in God’s Eyes

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For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to do something “big” for the Lord. Once God saved me in college, ordinary was something I wasn’t willing to settle for. But as adulthood settled in, ordinary was all I saw around me. I worked desk jobs. I did the same thing every day....

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Wednesday, 26 April 2017 15:15

Is Singleness a Problem - or an Opportunity?

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You will not find a biblical text that encourages you to check out of kingdom work because you’re presently unsatisfied.

Sometimes in church life, you hear “problem” language linked to singleness. “How do we solve the problem of singleness?”

Don’t get me wrong. I...

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Sermon, prayer, song, postlude. The worship service ends and the scramble begins—get the children, get the jackets, head for the door. It’s time for lunch.

Though we exchange brief "how-are-yous" with the folks in our pew, our pleasantries make it clear we’re not sticking around....

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Wednesday, 26 April 2017 15:05

Jesus and the Broken-Hearted

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The other day I was reading this wonderful encounter between Jesus, a Pharisee, and a sinful woman. As always, Jesus continues to destroy my preconceived notions and challenge my spiritual realities.  Here’s the passage: 

One of the Pharisees asked him to eat with him, and he went...

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Tell me if this sounds familiar to you. College freshmen Joe joins your church. He’s on fire for Jesus. He wants to give his life to the Lord, which means devoting it to unreached peoples in the hardest parts of the world. Joe can hardly stand middle-class, American Christianity and its...

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Tuesday, 25 April 2017 15:15

Sister, You Can Do Hard Things

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“It’s just not for me, I guess,” she said, shaking her head with resignation. The words fell from her mouth with a splat; they were deflated and her heart was fit to match. Between us sat an open Bible, a well-worn dictionary, two pens, and plenty of scratch paper. We worked...

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Tuesday, 25 April 2017 15:00

Bearing with the Failings of the Weak

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A confident man once invited the most inexperienced person in the church out for evangelism at a local park. On the drive over, they prayed and strategized a few conversation starters. The inexperienced member remained a bit fuzzy on what passages of Scripture to reference, and as he gazed out the...

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One of my hobbies is photography. While my iPhone does a good job, the Digital SLR I have takes much better pictures. If you aren’t familiar with the lingo, it is one of those cameras that allows you to change its lens. Being able to change the lens is important because each lens offers a...

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Monday, 24 April 2017 15:05

If the Church Won't Change

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I became a Christian at the age of 15. At the invitation of a local youth pastor, I began attending a small, rural Southern Baptist church in our small town of about a thousand people and immediately immersed myself in all the church had to offer. Sunday nights? I was there....

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Sunday, 23 April 2017 21:40

Creating a Culture of Hospitality

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Church doesn’t just happen on Sunday morning and Wednesday nights. We all know that. In our busy and self-isolating culture, we have to make intentional, personal contact with each other if we want to be a real community. But how do we do it? Let me suggest one centuries-old method: invite...

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Sunday, 23 April 2017 21:35

Links For The Church (3/20)

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Sparks, Marriage, and Christ

In this piece, Warner Aldridge shares four passages of scripture that equip husbands to love their wives. 

How Brainy Women Benefit the Church

"Whether in our homes, schools, or churches, we are called to honor and facilitate women’s intellectual development as...

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Sunday, 23 April 2017 15:15

8 Departure Dangers from Gospel-Centrality

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"Only let us hold true to what we have attained."-- Philippians 3:16

There are lots of distractions from and temptations to discard a commitment to gospel-centeredness. Here are just 8.

1. The Devil's Accusation

Every now and then I will hear some variation of this accusation from the evil one: "How...

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Saturday, 22 April 2017 15:15

More Than Conquerors

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"Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us."-- Romans 8:37

We go to Christ for forgiveness, and then too often look to the law for power to fight our sins. Paul thus rebukes us, "O foolish Galatians, who hath bewitched you, that ye should not obey the truth? This...

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Thursday, 20 April 2017 15:15

Our Minds Are Like Baking Stone

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Early on in our marriage, I remember attempting to serve my wife by tackling the dishes before she could notice. After my whirlwind of scrubbing and rinsing, I sat down in the other room, enjoying the rare air of doing something good while anticipating its discovery. The atmosphere of...

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Thursday, 20 April 2017 15:00

Reject

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“The stone which the builders rejected, this became the very cornerstone,” and, “A stone of stumbling and a rock of offense” (1 Peter 2:7-8).

This is the One everyone else rejected, even when they saw Him in person and were sometimes two feet from His face. They looked the...

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Thursday, 20 April 2017 12:20

Introducing: The For The Church Podcast

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We are launching a brand new resource this week! Introducing: The For The Church Podcast. Hosted by FTC managing editor Jared Wilson and featuring some of our favorite leaders in church ministry, this new podcast is sure to make a worthy addition to your regular listens. Download, subscribe, enjoy!

E...

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Wednesday, 19 April 2017 15:15

Present Darkness

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In studying for a sermon on depression and anxiety, I came across a great insight: the book of Psalms contains many songs of lament, but the trend of modern church music (and services in general) has largely been focused on the sunny side of life.

We definitely have good reason to emphasize the joy,...

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Wednesday, 19 April 2017 15:10

The Original Jesus Juke

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You know what I’m talking about. The "Jesus Juke" has been perfected round the world by super-holy folks who take an otherwise benign comment and make people feel all guilty for not being more spiritual. “I love watching Tom Brady throw that pigskin on Sunday afternoons,” you say....

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Wednesday, 19 April 2017 15:05

Preachers with Presence

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I listen to a lot of good preachers.

Over the last six years or so, it was not uncommon for me to travel over an hour each way for work purposes. On those journeys, I was regularly accompanied by John Piper or David Platt.  Sometimes Tim Keller or Don Carson were available to make the trip with...

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Tuesday, 18 April 2017 15:30

God Does Not Answer "Selfie" Prayers

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I was looking for a cord for a device I had not used in a while. And I knew exactly where to look. My wife keeps a box where she dumps gadget stuff me and the kids inevitably lose.

I rummaged through the box, but never found what I was looking for. But I did find several digital cameras. I pulled...

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Tuesday, 18 April 2017 15:00

What Christianity Offers

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In Philippians 3, Paul tells us of the righteousness we have by faith in Christ Jesus. It doesn't matter who we once were. All that matters is who are now in Christ. We gladly give up what we once treasured and forsake what we once pursued that was contrary to God. "For his sake I have suffered the...

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Tuesday, 18 April 2017 15:00

The Former is Not The Forever

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In my typical Saturday morning fashion, I sat down in a busy coffee shop to read the Bible. There is something sneaky about communing with God in a room full of people who have no idea that the Maker of the universe knows every word I write in my journal. I love it. Aloneness in a crowd, when no...

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Monday, 17 April 2017 15:10

The Sluggard's Substitute

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“The desire of the sluggard kills him, for his hands refuse to labor.”  - Proverbs 21:25

The book of Proverbs is filled with immense practical truth. Scripture testifies to a strong work ethic; this proverb highlights that. A sluggard who is filled with his desire for sloth...

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Monday, 17 April 2017 15:05

Checking Our Compassion Gauges

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Our culture generally sees compassion as a virtue. We admire and respect compassionate people and even feel that it is our responsibility to be compassionate to some extent. But, the call to be compassionate is more than a cultural value; it is a biblical expectation for all who claim to follow God....

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