Archive | Theology/Bible

What is the role of women in ministry?

Todd Wagner is the pastor of Watermark Community Church in Dallas, Texas. He was my pastor for several years when I was a student in seminary, and I am very grateful for his ministry. In the video above, he gives a quick answer to the question, “What is the role of women in ministry?” It is a concise, eight-minute summary of biblical manhood and womanhood, and I commend it to you.

Eric Metaxas has stimulating interview with Owen Strachan about “The Colson Way”

Owen Strachan is the author of the fantastic new book The Colson Way, a book about the life and influence of the late Chuck Colson. Last week, Owen visited “The Eric Metaxas Show” to talk about the book (listen above). This is a stimulating conversation about an important book and person. Listen to the podcast. Get the book. Continue Reading →

Dueling articles on transgender at The Public Discourse

There is an important conversation going on at The Public Discourse—two articles with dueling views on transgender. Jennifer Gruenke makes the case for a biological basis for transgender identity. Greg Brown responds with a strong counterargument exposing some critical weaknesses in Gruenke’s essay.

I am with Brown on this one, and I commend his careful response to you. I would add just a few brief observations of my own about Gruenke’s article: Continue Reading →

Culpable Ignorance: You have no excuse for not knowing what abortion is.

The third video exposing Planned Parenthood was just released today (see below). It is the worst one yet as it depicts the actual carnage of abortion. It is difficult to watch, but everyone who supports the legality of this barbarism is morally obligated to watch it. It is clearly a human being that has been torn apart and killed in utero. If you did not know that before, you will know after seeing this video. The images don’t lie.

If you support this kind of thing being legal and don’t watch the video, your ignorance of the horror will not absolve your indifference. One of Jesus’ last utterances from the cross helps us to understand our responsibility in light of these videos. Unfortunately, the connection is often missed because his words are widely misunderstood. Continue Reading →

A word to pastors preaching in the aftermath of Obergefell v. Hodges

I am a pastor. I preach the word of God regularly to the congregation that I serve. And this morning I am thinking about and praying for other pastors across the country who will be ascending the sacred desk tomorrow morning to deliver a message to God’s people. Some of them are wondering what to say in the wake of a Supreme Court decision that seems designed to marginalize our ancient faith. I don’t know that I have anything particularly earth-shattering to offer here, but I would like to encourage you pastors in several specific ways as you prepare. Continue Reading →

Jim Hamilton on the Song of Songs

James M. Hamilton, Jr., Song of Songs: A Biblical-Theological, Allegorical, Christological Interpretation, Focus on the Bible (Scotland: Christian Focus, 2015). 154pp. $14.99.

Jim Hamilton has recently published a stimulating commentary on the Song of Songs. Readers familiar with Jim’s work know his passion for doing whole Bible theology. Likewise, this volume exposits the Song with respect to the overall storyline of scripture. In short, it’s a work of biblical theology.

One of the big questions that any commentator on the Song has to answer is what this book is all about. Is it to be interpreted literally or allegorically? Is it about human love only or about Christ’s love for his church? Jim’s answer to those questions is “yes.” It’s not an either/or thing but a both/and thing. The Song depicts real human love, but that love serves to illustrate Yahweh’s covenant with Israel. Yes, the Song is about the King’s love for his bride, but it is also about Christ’s love for the church.

This is an accessible exposition of the text and highly recommended for anyone trying to understand the message of the Song. Purchase it here.

New Podcast on Same-Sex Attraction, Temptation, and Sin

Whenever I speak on the topic of homosexuality, it seems that one question keeps coming up: “Is Same-Sex Attraction Sinful?” How you answer this question has tremendous practical implications, not only for those who experience SSA but also for those trying to minister to them.

I recently sat down for a brief interview with Heath Lambert to answer this very query. In short, my answer to the question is “Yes, it is.” If you are interested to hear how and why, you can download it here or listen to it below. You can sign-up for the excellent ACBC podcast here. Read about it here.

How pastors save their people (and yes, they really do save them).

“Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; persevere in them. For by doing this, you will save both yourself and the ones who hear you.” -1 Timothy 4:16

This verse has caused problems for many readers of scripture. It sounds a little unorthodox to hear Paul tell pastor Timothy that Timothy can “save” the people he preaches to. Indeed, some commentators have tried to avoid this difficulty by suggesting that the word translated “save” isn’t talking about eternal salvation. But I think that interpretation is incorrect. We have to work with what the text says, not with what we think it ought to say. Paul routinely uses this term to talk about eternal salvation (e.g., 1 Tim. 1:15, 2:4; 2 Tim. 1:9, 4:18; Titus 3:5), and there’s no reason to read it any differently here. Continue Reading →

Bruce or Caitlyn? He or she? Should Christians accommodate transgender naming?

How should Christians respond to transgenderism in general and Bruce Jenner’s “transition” in particular? I think Christians are at their best when they recognize a need for both compassion and truth-telling. Compassion for those who experience painful alienation from their own bodies and truth-telling in the face of fictional accounts of gender identity.

As I have written before, transgenderism is a denial of God-ordained differences between male and female (Gen. 1:26-27). It is an untruthful suppression of the sexual binary that God has encoded into every cell of our bodies. When a person feels their gender identity to be out of sync with their sexual identity, the problem is not with the body but with the mind. To steal a phrase from Sam Allberry, the conflict is evidence of how sin distorts us not of how God made us. Thus, it is unloving and contrary to human flourishing to deny or obscure these truths. Continue Reading →

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