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

The Christward Collective - Apologetic Report
Monday, 18 September 2017 21:22

What Are You Waiting For?

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One of the downsides of living in the technological age is that we are constantly overwhelmed with what we allow to stream into our minds and hearts from our newsfeeds, social media debates, conversations about world affairs, social agendas, personal opinions and every sort of religious and...

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Thursday, 14 September 2017 22:17

The God-Centered Gospel

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The Bible from beginning to end is the story of God. There is but one living and true God (Deuteronomy 6:4; Is. 45:5-7; 1 Cor. 8:4), an infinite, all-knowing Spirit (John 4:24), perfect in all His attributes, one in essence, eternally existing in three Persons–Father, Son, and Holy Spirit...

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Sunday, 10 September 2017 20:48

Biblical Encouragement

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“How are you doing? Really doing? How are you handling your hard week?” she asked. Then she followed those questions up with, “Can I pray for you right now?”

Encouragement--we would recognize it anywhere. It’s like a gentle push forward when we’ve run out of...

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Tuesday, 05 September 2017 00:02

Rise Up

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Whenever our congregation ordains new officers (i.e. elders and deacons), I love to sing the hymn, “Rise up, O Men of God"...well, except for the words. It’s a high energy hymn and one with a stirring tune (we sing it to Festal Song), but have you really ever studies the words...

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Friday, 01 September 2017 05:49

You Know You're Preaching When...

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Preaching is an important gift from God. How important is preaching? Jesus is a preacher.1 The truth that Jesus is a preacher should point you to the weight of preaching. You can see the value Jesus placed on preaching when in His earthly ministry He said to His disciples, “Let us go on to...

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Sunday, 27 August 2017 23:41

More Than God

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When I was a kid I would often go fishing with my dad. Our fishing trips usually started at the tackle shop. For a little boy, a tackle shop is a nearly magical place filled with colorful lures, live bait, and trophy fish mounted on the wall. Everything in the store had the ability to send me into...

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Wednesday, 23 August 2017 08:07

Confessional Millennials?

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Confessionalists value unity; Millennials celebrate individualism. Confessionalists cherish tradition; Millennials love innovation. Confessionalists are guardians; Millennials are liberators. The combination of these words seems like an oxymoron. But does it make sense to completely separate...

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Thursday, 17 August 2017 21:55

Don't Waste Your Commute

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We live in what has to be the most frenetic society in all of human history. It seems as though things are just getting faster and faster, and the pressure to fill our schedules with non-essential activities is becoming more and more demanding. The impact of such a dynamic is not easy to measure;...

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Monday, 14 August 2017 22:34

Jesus and the Book of Job

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The book of Job presents the preacher with a myriad of homiletical challenges. First there’s the book’s sheer length, weighing in at a hefty 42 chapters. Then you have the cyclical and repetitive aspects of Job’s conversations with his three older friends which make up the...

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Tuesday, 08 August 2017 04:19

A Spiritual Brotherhood

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A number of years ago, Sinclair Ferguson made the observation that "the Puritan movement of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries...underlines for us the significance of spiritual brotherhood in the movements of the Holy Spirit." The more we study the writings of the great pastors/theologians of...

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Wednesday, 02 August 2017 03:37

Preparing to Entertain

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The first Sunday on which I invited guests for lunch after church, the oven settings failed. We all arrived at the house, anticipating the mouthwatering aroma of baked ham and instead opened the door to . . . nothing. The oven was cold, the ham even chillier, and my smile of welcome instantly froze...

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Monday, 31 July 2017 02:24

Conflict in the Church

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Conflict regularly occurs in the church. If experience doesn’t teach this reality, then we only need turn to the pages of the New Testament for verification. Paul and Barnabas separate (Acts 15:36-41), divisions arise in Corinth (1 Corinthians 1:10-17), accusations are hurled at apostles (2...

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Wednesday, 26 July 2017 00:51

Pictures of Jesus

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Why does God give us so many pictures of believing in Jesus? Why not just some philosophical treatise on faith, or some systematic theology of faith? Why illustrations? And why so many?

First, because faith is so hard. Unbelief comes naturally to us; faith is unnatural. Faith is so hard it has...

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H.G. Wells’ 1898 novel, The War of the Worldsopens with these words:

No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man's and yet as mortal as his own; that as men busied...

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Sunday, 16 July 2017 22:25

The Patient God

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Augustine once said, “God has promised forgiveness to the repentant, but He has not promised tomorrow to those who delay repentance.” This is a sobering truth--a much needed reminder that we are called to repent of our sin as soon as God has convicted us of it. It is also a sobering...

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Monday, 10 July 2017 20:22

Promises Made, Promises Kept

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Most believers have a favorite promise in Scripture that they have memorized and cling to during hard times--often even more than one. Personally. I have always been partial to Isaiah 40, in which we read, “Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen...

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Saturday, 08 July 2017 08:40

Discovering Christ in the Psalms

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Athanasius once made the following statement about the book of Psalms: "While the entire Holy Scripture is a teacher of virtues and of the truths of faith, the book of Psalms possesses somehow the perfect image for the soul’s course of life." The Psalter has a unique place in Old Testament...

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Wednesday, 05 July 2017 06:26

The Aesthetics of Worship

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In my last post, I set out a series of questions--including the following--regarding the content of music in worship:

Is there (or should there be) a palpable difference between the aesthetics of worship and other opportunities for singing together? Does the context of a coffee house, campfire,...

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Friday, 30 June 2017 04:33

The Scent of the Gospel

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I’ve often heard that the sense of smell is the sense most closely related to the memory. A particular smell has a powerful way of effecting our recollection of a vivid memory. Every now and then, I’ll smell something and in my mind I’m instantly sitting at the round table in my...

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Thursday, 29 June 2017 02:53

The Extra Ministry Mile

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In his outstanding series of talks to young men preparing for ministry, Charles Spurgeon cited a theologian who famously said, "Study yourself to death and then pray yourself alive again." One can take this sentiment, reshape and reform it into a dozen others, in order to encourage young men who...

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Monday, 26 June 2017 04:47

A Spiritual Barometer Check

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True knowledge of God manifests itself in love for all the saints. Growing maturity in Christ evidences itself in growing love for His people. Does an individual possess a lot of knowledge regarding doctrine and theology? Great, we can never gain enough knowledge of doctrine and theology. Let us...

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Thursday, 22 June 2017 04:41

Do They Know You By Your Suit?

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Speaking on the matter of Christian freedom John Calvin said, “This is a slippery place, and there is great danger of falling on either side.”1 Too true! Christians face the duel temptation of excessive rule-making and inappropriate freedom-flaunting when it comes to matters that...

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Monday, 19 June 2017 02:19

The Bittersweet Parting

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“Parting is such sweet sorrow." This is one of William Shakespeare’s most oft-quoted lines. What few realize is that it was uttered in the context of Juliet saying goodnight to Romeo “till it be tomorrow.” The sorrow of that parting was sweetened by the knowledge that it was...

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Are you planning on attending the PCA General Assembly June 12-16 in Greensboro, NC? Stop by the Alliance booth (#3605) to say hello, find out what’s new, and receive free audio from Liam Goligher, Bible teacher on the Alliance’s No Falling Word broadcast.

The Christward...

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Wednesday, 07 June 2017 23:46

Sons and Servants

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Martin Luther, the great Reformer, said, “A Christian is free and independent in every respect, a bondservant to none.” In the very next sentence he stated, “A Christian is a dutiful servant in every respect, owing a duty to everyone.”

We see this reality throughout the...

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