The Five Key Factors in Every Christian’s Sanctification

Growth in Christlikeness is a lifelong, active progression. We are holier on the day we die than we were on the day we came to Christ. We are holier on the day we die than we are on the day before we die. Yet this long progression is peppered with seasonal lulls, drudgery, and complacency. We know we are never as Christlike as we ought to be or even as we want to be. Yet while our lack of holiness …

The Damning Devastation of a Single Coddled Sin

We can never be ambivalent. We who are Christians have no right to allow any sin to persist. We must go hard after every sin and to pursue each one until it has been completely crushed, for even one sin left alone is enough to do terrible damage to our souls. A recent study of one of my favorite old authors showed me the damning devastation of a single coddled sin. Here are nine things to consider in times you …

Become a Patron

Lay Aside Your Cheap Running Shoes

One of the pleasures of diverse reading is finding unexpected connections between unrelated books. I found one of these recently as I was reading Shoe Dog by Phil Knight (a book about the founding and growth of Nike) and Devoted to God by Sinclair Ferguson (a book about the Christian’s growth in holiness)—two books I thoroughly enjoyed. The books and authors could hardly be more different, yet in this one way they agreed. While most of Shoe Dog is focused …

Devoted to God

Christians are called to the most difficult of all tasks. Over the course of our lives we are to be sanctified, to grow in holiness, to begin to act like and look like Jesus. We are to stop being what we once were, to put aside old dreams, desires, and habits, and to start being something new, to put on new dreams, new desires, and new habits. This work begins the moment of conversion and ends only with death. Between …

Keep a Close Watch on Yourself!

It happens with alarming, distressing regularity. And it hurts every time. It hurts every time we see a person we love or admire fall into a great sin or deny a precious doctrine. We are always left asking ourselves how it happened. What went wrong? How did we not see this coming? How did they not see this coming? Every one of these situations is unique and uniquely complicated. And yet there is always an inevitable, terrible simplicity as well. …

Do You Have the Faith to be Faithful?

Children are mimics. Children are mimics because human beings learn by imitation. We learn to speak by hearing our parents speak. We learn to do dishes by watching mom and dad do dishes. We even learn to love (or not love) Jesus by seeing our parents love (or not love) Jesus. In both vice and virtue, children will begin to look like their parents. Parents quickly come to realize the importance of setting a good example, of being worthy of …

Be a Living Example of God’s Living Love

Art comes in many different forms. Visit a museum or art gallery and you may see sculpture, pottery, calligraphy, and, of course, paintings. Though each of these is beautiful and valuable in its own way, the Bible commends another form of art, one that is more important and more enduring. It is a living art. Francis Schaeffer said, “No work of art is more important than the Christian’s own life, and every Christian is cared upon to be an artist …

Things Christians Just Don’t Get To Do

This one began with a conversation, with a statement within that conversation: “Christians don’t get to hold a grudge!” It’s just not an option, not a vice we can allow ourselves. But it’s not the only thing Christians don’t get to do. There are other kinds of behavior that God rules out, that God describes as being nothing less than sinful rebellion. Sadly, this doesn’t always stop us. Some of these behaviors continue despite God’s insistence that they are unfittinng …

Do You Set an Example in Your Conduct?

Today I want to scare you a little. At the very least I want to intimidate you. Actually, I want the Bible to scare and intimidate you, to set a challenge so difficult that you’ll know you can’t possibly meet it on your own. This is a challenge for any Christian, but I’m directing it particularly at younger Christians, at people in their teens or twenties. I’ve been working on a series of articles that takes a look at some …

Lay Aside Every Suitcase

On August 3, 2016, Emirates airlines flight 521 crashed at Dubai International Airport. The pilots had just set down the plane when they received a warning that they had landed too late—they would run out of runway before the plane could come to a safe stop. They initiated the go-around procedure which would allow them to lift off, circle the airport, and try again. The plane rose off the runway and began to climb, but then suddenly sank back down …