One of the greatest convictions that has gripped me over the past couple of years is the power and priority of writing, not just for “writers” but for all of us regular folk. Historically speaking there are a thousand reasons to put your thoughts and convictions to pen and paper. I have mentioned these before. As I have given this issue more indepth thought in the past few weeks from a distinctly christian perspective its significance shines all the brighter.
We live in a digital age. What that means in a large sense is that we live in an age of mass information. Our ability to produce, communicate and store information grows exponentially, as does our exposure to it. We live in a world that is teaming with voices, words and ideas.
John MacArthur opened the 2015 Shepherds Conference yesterday with the powerful reminder that one of the most foundational and determinative aspects of the christian worldview is how one relates to the Bible. What a christian believes to be true about the Bible will go on to have a massive impact on their entire faith because everything we believe comes from the text of this one book.
We live in a time where there seems to be so much variety in how people approach the Bible. One can find dozens of different churches and denominations which all claim to follow Jesus and believe the Bible. Yet, when it comes down to defining what they believe the Bible to be and how it actually fits into their christian life, they all may have a new and different response.
One of the most puzzling sections of the Bible to me as a new christian was the book of Proverbs. Did you ever run into that dilemma? It just seemed so random; a collection of short sayings, strung into chapters which seemed to have no structure, flow or centrality.
Some time later, while attending a Bible study seminar at Word of Grace Bible Church, pastor Alexey Kolomiytsev said something about Proverbs and its richness which helped me see it in a new light. I don’t even remember exactly what he said but it suddenly dawned on me.
What is true wisdom?
I really like John Piper’s response when people come up to him and tell him how great they thought his sermon or book was, and how much it impacted them. His response is usually along the lines of, “I know, wasn’t that great?! I was so convicted or strengthened by that message as well!” I’m not sure where I heard or read this, but it really stuck with me.
Its always an interesting challenge to learn to respond correctly to praise and positive feedback in the world of ministry. I can see this challenge in the leaders around me at our church, as well as in my own life. At first glance, Piper’s response might seem prideful. Isn’t he using the church teaching spotlight to endorse and praise his own work? Isn’t he bragging about his own preaching? Continue reading
The past couple of months, I have had the privilege in putting together a small class on the history and method of proper Bible study with a group of young men at our church. Overall, it has been a very enriching time. Here are some thoughts I have over the first few sessions.
I Believe In A God Who Has Spoken
Not only have we been created in His image, with the ability to know and understand him, but also he himself has spoken powerfully to us, pouring his whole life into rebuilding a relationship with us.
He has communicated himself in the word which has powerfully stood the test of time, and has stood apart from any other supposed “source of truth”. He has given us a book which speaks to the deepest aspects of who we are an what our problem is, in a message that is so powerful and so different than any other message in the universe.