There is an ancient teaching called Gnosticism which has, throughout the centuries, constantly sought to wriggle itself into the life of the church. At its essence, the idea is that there is a fundamental division between the spiritual and the physical. The Gnostic believes that he is saved by the possession of special knowledge. The physical world however, along with the body, is fallen and beyond saving or repair.
Many variations of this idea have surfaced and resurfaced in the history of christianity, with each following version tending to be more and more subtle and sneaky. And our day is indeed no exception¹. But how can this be so?? Don’t we live in a day of peak theological growth? Before a false teaching even appears, we already have a good book published on the issue! We have hundreds of sermons, articles, websites and magazines being put out every week defending and defining the Gospel of Jesus!
I am filling out an application to the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. One of the questions on the application was, “Please explain your understanding of the gospel of Jesus Christ”. I found it deeply refreshing to rinse my mind once again in that which is the heart of all that I believe and think. Continue reading
One of the most compelling characteristics of the biblical gospel message is its profound uniqueness. Through the years, as I have struggles with questions of faith, religion and truth, as I have put the biblical message under my own criticism and scrutiny, I have been astounded at the particularity and specificity of this message. Despite its hundreds of misrepresentations, it is a story that is truly distinct, a worldview that stands apart.
We live in a world where there basically seem to be two categories of people: the religious and the secular. The religious people, which actually make up the vast majority of humanity¹, believe in the importance of serving God, following his will and seeking to please him. To them life revolves around the question of life after death, or heaven. The secular person is generally urban, educated and career driven. Priorities in life that stand out to this population is personal freedom and fulfillment. The idea that truth can be dictated by a single source or system of thought is strongly opposed. Secular people in our time often admit to have some sort of spiritual values but these are very vague, loosely held and ever-evolving.
One of the inevitable aspects of living in a Genesis 3 world is the fact that life is full of challenges, trouble, trials and conflict. The impact of sin has been such that it has infected every single aspect of life in such a way that we simultaneously love it and suffer from it every day. Life is indeed a battle.
Unless we allow the Word of God shape our thinking and approach the toughest parts of life, we will have a very hard time growing and deepening in any long lasting sense. Here are three central biblical truths that can help us stand firm and come out victorious in our day to day battles. Continue reading
We spend our lives thinking about many things. But how often do we think about how and why we think? I am reading a book these past few days which has really stimulated my thinking and challenged the way I see much of what surrounds me these days. Al Mohler’s The Conviction to Lead is a book that really reflects the depth and breadth of life that this man has lived, and the incredible amount that he has been able to accomplish is such a relatively short time.
As I read Mohler’s discussion of the key components of effective leadership, I can’t help but notice the utter absence of it in the world that surrounds me. Mohler explains that effective leadership is rooted in an active, passionate and convictional approach to life. You don’t have to look very far to see that there are not very many people who live this way.