Published December 16th, 2016 by

This is the first discipline I wanted to examine as part of my series in the Spiritual Disciplines: devotion to the Apostles’ teaching. In the last installment, we looked at the purpose of the disciplines and now that we’ve laid a foundation we can look at each one individually beginning with the corporate disciplines — those things Christians do together.  These will be brief descriptions with links to more in-depth treatments or discussions. In choosing a place to focus on corporate disciplines, I landed on Acts 2:

And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers.

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Published September 10th, 2016 by

haykinBack in June of this year, Nancy Guthrie messaged to tell me that she was reading a review copy of a forthcoming book and I was quoted in it! Well, that was exciting news. I wrote Good Mr. Baxter about 25 years ago and it has remained in obscurity for the most part. I was just happy to see that someone read it and found something of value. You can find my semi-immortal words on page 49 of Dr. Michael Haykin‘s Eight Women of Faith!

This is my mini-review of his biographical sketches of eight historically significant Evangelical women, in one volume.… Read the rest

Published May 5th, 2015 by

Let’s talk about Fierce Convictions: The Extraordinary Life of Hannah More? Poet, Reformer, Abolitionist by Karen Swallow Prior. Dr. Prior is a Professor of English at Liberty University in Lynchburg, VA. She is also the author of Booked: Literature in the Soul of Me (T. S. Poetry Press 2012) and a contributing writer for Christianity TodayThe AtlanticIn Touch, Her.meneutics and Think Christian.  Ms. Prior is a member of the Faith Advisory Council of the Humane Society of the United States, living out a fierce commitment to her family of dogs, horses, and chickens in rural Virginia, along with her husband, Roy.… Read the rest

Published February 10th, 2015 by

I know it may sound cynical and even presumptuous to impute motives, but I have to come clean. Any time I see a move towards classical liberal theology, from a more conservative view, I have the same thoughts as Michael Bird does. But, he is able to articulate it in a clearer and more memorable fashion:

I think Langford fails to recognize that what drives much of liberal theology is not so much rationality, but culture, the attempt to make Christianity palatable to the reigning cultural zeitgeist. That is why I’ve often thought of liberal theology as theological form of “Stockholm syndrome,” where liberal theologians identify with the values of their cultural captors in order to survive under adversity or strive to impress their contemporaries.

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Published October 11th, 2014 by

Blogging is a dangerous business for the Christian to engage in: particularly when commenting on culture, politics, religion, art, humor, sexuality or other volatile subject matter.

One can come off sounding self-righteous and condescending, as I often do — being boorish. Then, there’s also guilt by association: “That’s fine coming from the religion that gave us the Inquisition, the Crusades and the Salem Witch Hunts.” From the other direction, you open yourself up to insults by, so-called Christians, who want to hunt down witches, launch a crusade against the infidels or turn you over to the inquisitors! Indeed:

Sufferings must be the Churches most ordinary lot, and Christians indeed must be self-denying Cross-bearers, even where there are none but formal nominal Christians to be the Cross-makers… Richard Baxter

I was studying Paul’s letter to the Romans and reached for Karl Barth’s classic commentary.… Read the rest

Published October 8th, 2014 by

512YfhhKXNL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_Alexander Strauch’s Biblical Eldership (BE) packs the most thorough exposition of relevant passages concerning elders in the Bible into one volume, while offering a spirited and compelling apologetic for the practice of non-clerical, plural leadership in the local church. But, it’s not just for church leaders – all readers will find a clear and well-reasoned appeal to all Christians to practice a humble, relational style of Christianity modeled after Jesus Christ. And, even if you do not find Alex Strauch’s model or paradigm ultimately convincing and advocate a monarchical episcopacy or congregational form of church government, I guarantee you will be challenged, inspired and equipped to take your ministry, whatever it may be, more seriously and you will serve with greater passion and effectiveness.… Read the rest

Published May 8th, 2008 by

 

redesign2It took nearly twenty years, but my short biography of Richard Baxter is in publication and you can get your hands on a copy of it on at Lewis and Roth, using PayPal, VISA© or MasterCard. It’s only $9.95 and a nominal charge for shipping and handling, so how can you go wrong? Most of my sales have been by money order or personal check and you can find that order form right here.

“Who’s Richard Baxter?” you ask.

The well-known Christian author and authority on the Puritans, J.I. Packer, called him “incomparable” in his zeal and abilities, as well as “…the most outstanding pastor, evangelist and writer on practical and devotional themes that Puritanism produced.”

His detractors called him Scribbling Dick, because he published over 140 works during his lifetime, all the while thinking he would be killed or die by the next Spring.… Read the rest

Published March 29th, 2007 by

Sadie commented on Orrin Porter Rockwell’s piercing eyes — said he “creeped her out.” I thought we would close out LDS week with a gallery of OPR photos, spanning the life of the legendary frontiersman and gunslinger. If you would like to learn a bit more about ol’ Port and his exploits, check out these links:

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Published March 27th, 2007 by

Orrin Porter Rockwell; Man of God, Son of Thunder by Harold Schindler. From the University of Utah Press:

Was Orrin Porter Rockwell a cold-blooded killer or a saint? In this balanced account, Schindler paints the thrilling portrait of a genuinely colorful individual, a unique man of the frontier west. This electrifying, stunningly illustrated biography of the most mysterious and controversial figure in Mormon history won the American Association for State and Local History’s prestigious Award of Merit.

In his fast-paced and lucid style the author pursues the man behind the legend. Was the devoted bodyguard of Joseph Smith and Brigham Young a stalwart pioneer or a vicious murderer of scores of innocent victims?
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Published March 19th, 2007 by

How do you take your Christianity? Anthropo or Theo – centric? It really does make a difference and it comes through in our conversation. God is my starting point… He is transcendent… yet, I often find myself falling back into my old way of thinking, evaluating what He says and does; what He wants me to say and do, by my own subjective notions of right and wrong, good or bad, practical or unhelpful. I’m happy for people like John Piper, who bring me back to the ultimate center of my life — the Person Who alone is the beginning of all wisdom and understanding.… Read the rest

Published March 9th, 2007 by

Man Emerging From StoneOnce in a while you may happen upon something you wish you’d written, but in my case that happens, oh, about fifty times a day! I found this poem by journalist Steve Turner at PoemHunter.com and was impressed by his perceptive wit. Often, we deny verities and creeds so vehemently that our persistent dissention becomes dogma which, ironically, congeals into a creed of our own — a positive confession of our contrarian attitude, systematizing the tenets of our rebellion against any form of alien correction or restraint that might hinder us in our pursuit of pleasure and self-interest. In the end, we may become the bigoted haters that so excited our righteous passions in the first place.… Read the rest

Published March 7th, 2007 by

Unholy Devotion: Why Cults Lure Christians by Harold BussellEveryone has a film, a book, a piece of art that has a revolutionary effect on the way they look at everything. And, if one is fortunate (I would say “blessed”), that may happen many times along this journey we call life.

I first read Unholy Devotion as a young Christian, involved in ministry to people caught up in cults. The book received rave reviews within the apologetics community, so it was required reading for any aspiring counter-cult evangelist !

I had no idea what I was in for. Rather than focus on cultic strategies to deceive the naive or unwitting Christian into joining the Baha’i Faith or Watchtower Society, Harold Bussell identifies cultish tendencies among mainline and evangelical groups that set up otherwise solid believers to cash in their pearl of great price for a worthless counterfeit faith, presenting itself as the genuine article.… Read the rest

Published November 18th, 2006 by

Pastor Steve has been busy here in Nevada County. We’ve been to prayer meetings, a youth meeting and even a Reformation Bible Conference, where Pastor Steve met Dr. Henry Krabbendam. Pastor Steve attended a pastors prayer meeting and spoke at a sports awards banquet for William Jessup University. He’s taught us some African praise songs. And, he’s working on a mission for Bo to come to Uganda. The indications so far point to May 2007, if the Lord wills.… Read the rest