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

9Marks - Apologetic Report

Sleepy. That’s the word that comes to mind when I used to think of members’ meetings. Now, I came by this impression honestly—having grown up in a rather typical and small Baptist church. The only members’ meetings I’d ever sat through involved tedious budget...

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Wednesday, 16 January 2019 22:19

6 Reasons You Should Preach through Obadiah

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“Please turn in your Bibles to the table of contents.”

This is how I spared my congregation from embarrassment when I preached my first sermon from the obscure book of Obadiah. Nestled in the uncharted backwaters of the Minor Prophets, Obadiah’s missive to Edom is like a rare...

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Wednesday, 16 January 2019 01:53

Building a Healthy Church Amid Nominal Christianity

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The practice of meaningful membership is at the heart of what it means to be a faithful church in a nominal Christian culture.

Authors: Daniel Gardner

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Monday, 14 January 2019 17:00

Episode 71: On Canceling Church

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Dear Baptist Pastors,

Let’s have a heart-to-heart conversation on baptism and church membership. To my paedobaptist brothers, this article is not for you, though you are certainly welcome to eavesdrop. You may even find something edifying and instructive in this piece. As I’ll mention in...

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Scroggins, Clay. How to Lead When You’re Not in Charge: Leveraging Influence When you Lack Authority. Zondervan, 2018. 240 pages.

Leadership styles vary according to the needs of different organizations. Leading a tech company, for instance, differs from leading a battleship. Battleship...

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Thursday, 10 January 2019 04:04

Our Greatest Need Is Spiritual, Not Physical

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The most powerful tool that American churches and missions agencies possess is not their finances, but the good news that has been granted to them. And so, as they come to us, I pray they would be most moved not by physical brokenness, but spiritual brokenness.

— Ken Mbugua

Authors:...

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Wednesday, 09 January 2019 08:01

6 Reasons You Should Preach through Amos

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In this series, certain books will grab a preacher’s attention without much convincing. And then there are books like Amos that often go unnoticed and unpreached. Has anyone had a church member recently ask, “Hey, when are you going to finally preach a series through Amos?” Anyone...

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Imagine your five-year-old son playing with some friends from the neighborhood. One boy, from a Muslim family says, “I’m Muslim. What are you?” The boy from a Jewish family quickly responds, “I’m Jewish.” The boys then turn to your son and ask, “What about...

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My friend Brad is a pastor in England. His wife, Megan, is lying in a hospital bed, unconscious, a few days or even hours from death.

The story began last Friday, when she, almost nine months pregnant and healthy, got a small cut, leading to a Group A Strep infection. Her brain swelled, causing...

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Thursday, 03 January 2019 00:26

Why and How Should Pastors Cultivate Contentment?

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We grow in contentment through a long process in the university of Jesus.

Authors: Daniel Gardner

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Tuesday, 01 January 2019 10:20

You Can’t Preach Christ Without Preaching Depravity

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Depravity isn’t exactly en vogue these days. You don’t hear friends at coffee shops talking about the blackness of their hearts. We don’t put verses about human sinfulness on coffee cups, or surround them with filigree in inspirational memes.

We want to hear uplifting verses,...

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Thursday, 27 December 2018 01:21

Must a Preacher Preach the Gospel in Every Sermon?

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As preachers, we must proclaim the gospel in every sermon. But that doesn’t mean our sermons from Galatians should sound exactly like our sermons from Genesis.

Authors: Daniel Gardner

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David E. Fitch, Seven Practices for the Church on Mission. IVP Books, 2018. 141 pages, $12.00.

David Fitch’s most recent publication, Seven Practices for the Church on Mission(a simplified version of his earlier book Faithful Presence),argues that “presence is the way God works....

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Friday, 21 December 2018 01:33

Best Books for Pastors in 2018

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We asked pastors around the world a simple question: what books did you read in 2018 that helped you be a better pastor? We’ve curated their responses below. (See our 2017 list here.)

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God Is: A Devotional Guide to the Attributes of God, by Mark Jones

“Mark Jones somehow...

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Thursday, 20 December 2018 04:20

2019 Reading Plan

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What books do you plan to read in 2019? In this brief video, Mark Dever gives you a plan for reading through nine 9Marks books in 2019.

Authors: Daniel Gardner

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Wednesday, 19 December 2018 21:20

Belonging Before Believing?

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Two reasons “belonging before believing” is a bad idea:

—It’s theologically impossible. —It gives people what they want—community, acceptance, love—and thus potentially undermines their perceived need for Jesus.

Authors: Daniel Gardner

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Wednesday, 19 December 2018 13:00

4 Reasons You Should Preach through Joel

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I know this will cost me some 9Marks street cred, but the first book I preached to our new church wasn’t the Gospel of Mark. We went to Acts instead, but even that wasn’t the first book we finished. We took a detour halfway through and spent a month walking through Joel. Though I...

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If we invest in social issues without ever explaining the gospel, then we’ve failed the test of love. What my neighbor needs most isn’t food, but the gospel. To meet that larger need, we may meet temporal needs—but never to the exclusion of our main calling.

—Mike McKinley

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In pastoral ministry, your time loosely clusters around the public ministry (preaching and teaching) and personal ministry (pastoral care and counsel). Between the two, personal ministry is where you spend most of your time. It involves conversations after church, brief words of encouragement...

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Thursday, 13 December 2018 22:12

4 Reasons You Should Preach through Hosea

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The most minor thing about the Minor Prophets is their place in the life of the church today. Many of our people have never waded through the prophets’ robust theology of the God who disciplines his children and calls them to repentance. As a result, the word-pictures and often dismal future...

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The existence of an eternal Hell is not a character flaw of God. It “amens” his glory because in Hell, we see sin for the horrid, blasphemous folly that it truly is.

Authors: Daniel Gardner

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Tuesday, 11 December 2018 22:51

Book Review: The Storm-Tossed Family, by Russell Moore

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Russell Moore, The Storm-Tossed Family: How the Cross Reshapes the Home. B&H Books, 2018. 320 pages, $22.99.

 

Even the title of Russell Moore’s latest book, The Storm-Tossed Family, suggests that this is not just another book on the family. The range of what Moore covers is...

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