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

Valiant for Truth - Apologetic Report

“If you play with fire, you’re bound to get burned,” is an adage that conveys both great wisdom and warning for would-be pyromaniacs. But the warning is equally apt for theologians in the church. Sometimes they find ideas that they believe are useful, especially in theological...

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One of the most pressing issues in our day is the growth of Islam. Some statistics claim that Islam is the fastest growing religion and that if current growth rates continue that Muslims will surpass the world’s Christian population by the end of the century.

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John Calvin had many friends in his life, but some of his friendships did not stand the test of time and the stress of ministry. One friend in particular, Sebastian Castellio, embraced the Reformation and joined Calvin in Strasbourg to work alongside of him.

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We live in a day and age when activism of all kinds is on display on the internet, cable news broadcasts, and print media. The world’s mentality is, if you want to get something done, you have to protest, march, boycott, or do something to wield power and influence to promote your agenda

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One of the casualties of the modern theological curriculum is the division of the different theological disciplines. In the nineteenth-century theologians created the fourfold division of theology: biblical studies, church history, theology, and practical theology.

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Monday, 16 April 2018 20:31

A Pastor's Reflections: Intangibles

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A retired football player recently made headlines when he was flummoxed by the fact that he was not nominated to the pro football hall of fame. On the one hand, the player has a point. He was one of the NFL’s top players and has the statistics to prove it.

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I can remember that over the course of 24 months I had more than ten families tell me that they were re-locating due to job transfers. When I received the first intimations of these moves, I thought, “Well, that’s ok. God willing we can find some other families to fill the space.”

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I regularly run across statistics that say that thousands of pastors each year leave the ministry and cite burn out as a chief reason. While some have challenged the accuracy of these statistics, it doesn’t change the fact that burn out is a real problem for many pastors.

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Sigmund Freud once famously opined that religion was merely the wishful projection of weak people who were looking for their lost father figure. Freud was echoing the earlier theory of Ludwig Feurbach, who made the same claim.

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I was recently was perusing the newly added movies to Netflix and amidst the usual collection of never-heard-of movies was a title that caught my attention, The Case for Christ. I knew of the book, written by Lee Strobel, but was unaware that there was a movie.

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Monday, 12 March 2018 20:01

A Pastor's Reflections: Isaiah's Job

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Preachers often give thought to the question of how they will get the message of the gospel out to people who need to hear it. The church is, after all, supposed to evangelize the nations.

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I can’t help but wonder how many preachers and teachers spend a great deal of time in prayer before they undertake their sacred task. There is a story about Martin Luther King Jr. that illustrates my point.

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I’ve recently befriended a young man who is in the process of undergoing training for an elite military unit. I’m not only impressed by the challenges of the training but also by the young man’s quiet and humble spirit.

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Monday, 19 February 2018 19:21

A Pastor's Reflections: Widows

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Within any decent-sized congregation there are bound to be some who are widows, usually those that are older, but in some cases, there might be younger widows. In the world outside the church, many might look upon widows as a regular part of life.

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Monday, 12 February 2018 19:17

A Pastor's Reflections: Unsung Heroes

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I regularly receive notices of ministers who have served the church for decades but reach the end of their lives and die. As I read of such men I often wonder who they are and how many lives they impacted for the sake of Christ and his gospel.

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Monday, 05 February 2018 19:17

A Pastor's Reflections: A Tribute

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When I was a recent college graduate I had expressed an interest in attending seminary. I sensed a call on my life to serve in ordained ministry. At the time I was a theological neophyte and was looking for good books to read.

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Over the years I have had many students come into my office and ask me about pursuing doctoral studies. One of the first questions I ask them is, “Why?”

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As Christians we commit ourselves to the truth of God’s word—we profess to worship and believe in the truth incarnate, Jesus Christ, and we devote ourselves to the study of God’s written truth, namely, his word.

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Monday, 15 January 2018 19:31

A Pastor's Reflections: Flaws

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There are preachers and theologians to whom we listen and read. They fill our hearts with joy because they excel at pointing us to Christ. They move us to tears when we hear them preach, or they instill zeal in our hearts when we read their thunderous prose.

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Monday, 08 January 2018 19:31

A Pastor's Reflections: The Inner Ring

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One of the terms that has become popular in the last year is the deep state. In other words, people recognize that there is the recognized government, the executive, legislative, and judicial branches, but that at a deeper level there is a group of people and institutions that truly make the...

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As a professor and minister I regularly evaluate students to determine whether they possess the requisite theological knowledge to pass their exams. After a thirteen week semester students must take their final exam to demonstrate they have mastered the knowledge they have learned.

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Sunday, 24 December 2017 18:13

A Pastor's Reflections: Consider

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On this day as you revel in the cheer of the season, open gifts, celebrate with family, and perhaps take off to the movie theater to catch the latest show, consider that our triune God loved you before the foundation of the world.

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Monday, 18 December 2017 18:13

A Pastor's Reflections: Study Breaks

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Over the years I have read and watched presbyteries review pastoral calls, and one of the regular benefits I’ve seen is a one or two-week study break. It’s fairly common, but what is the study break and what’s the best way to use one?

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Friday, 15 December 2017 02:00

The Members of the Church

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What does it mean to be a member of the church?

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In my college days, I used to play in my church’s softball league. I had a lot of fun playing softball with my fellow teammates. In fact, I played in the fall, spring, and summer leagues—almost year-round.

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