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Weekend A La Carte (May 18)

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My gratitude goes to Harvest USA for sponsoring the blog this week to let you know about their free video courses for parents. Sponsors play a crucial role in keep this site going, so I am thankful for each and every one.

What It Takes to Survive Ministry

Darry Dash: “If you don’t think pastoral ministry will be hard, you’re wrong. Of course, it’s not the only hard vocation. Our congregations are filled with people who fill challenging roles. Pastoral ministry comes with many joys. My point, though, is this: it’s also filled with hazards and difficulties. If you suffer from idealism, pastoral ministry will beat it out of you.”

The Power of Prayer

“Sometimes, to protect a passage of scripture from the abuses it receives from those who twist it, we add so many qualifications that we eliminate not only the false teaching but also the profound truth it communicates.” That’s a bad thing! Doug offers a common example here.

The Dog’s Game

Kristin tells a story and describes what she learned from it. “I have thought about the dog and the man many times over the years. When I feel myself growing weary and frustrated with people who are repeatedly toying around with God and Scripture, claiming the label Christian while digging in their heels and living precisely as they please? I am learning to pause, pray, and walk away.”

Why Do Christians Do Bad Things?

“There are generally two basic forms in which this question is asked. First, most Christians have at some point asked themselves, ‘If I’m a true Christian, why do I keep sinning?’ Second, Christians and others have asked questions like, ‘How could Christians have committed such atrocities during the Crusades?’ The two questions are different, but they have essentially the same theological and biblical answer.”

Does It Matter Whether Seminary Education Is in-Person or Online?

Michael Kruger explains why in-person is generally best, but online is also necessary. “At RTS, here’s what we have learned. It’s the combination of both residential and online education that seems to work best. While we have intentionally placed the priority on residential, the online courses provide a wonderful supplement. In other words, the online program is not replacing our residential degree but enhancing it.”

Greet One Another With a … What?

“How is this exhortation still relevant to us today, in the West? The Bible must not be re-interpreted according to current cultural trends. However, part of accurately interpreting God’s Word is to recognize that it was written into a specific culture and context. And so it is important to recognize that a command to specifically ‘kiss’ one another may not translate seamlessly to American culture today.”

Flashback: In the Name of Jesus

When we say, “In Jesus’ name,” we pray in the name of the one who has been exalted to the highest place, the one who has had bestowed upon him the name that is above every name…

God’s commands are not designed to rob you of life or to plunder your freedom, but to graciously protect you from harm.

—Paul Tripp

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    Weekend A La Carte (May 18)

    A La Carte: What it takes to survive ministry / The power of prayer / The dog’s game / Why do Christians do bad things? / Does it matter whether seminary education is in-person or online? / Greet one another with a … what? / and more.

  • Free Stuff Fridays (Zondervan Reflective)

    This week the giveaway is sponsored by  Zondervan Reflective. When writers write, they are getting in touch with the image of God in them. This is true in some way of all artistry, but writers especially create worlds, characters, histories, and transformation–all ex nihilo (“out of nothing”). In The Storied Life, veteran author Jared C. Wilson…

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    A La Carte (May 17)

    A La Carte: Deep mercy for our dark insanity / The Rock / God will give us more than we can handle / When cynicism sets in / The judgment of getting exactly what we want / The life of Paul Kasonga / and more.

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    A La Carte (May 16)

    A La Carte: When intrusive thoughts come / How a horse saved orthodoxy / The brevity of life / Bad therapy / Acts of kindness aren’t random / Does John’s Last Supper chronology differ from the other gospels? / and more.

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    A La Carte (May 15)

    A La Carte: My pastor made me wait to enter ministry and I’m grateful / How could a good God… / How should a wife respond to her husband’s bad authority? / Sing your heart out, Christian / Does Jesus’ view of grace offend you? / Preaching the Psalms as a book / and more.

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    A La Carte (May 14)

    A La Carte: When God takes his time / Biblical priorities / God is doing something / Broken pieces / Loosening my grip / Since God’s call is effectual, how can someone be a false convert? / and more.