Where is the “Therefore” (or Why Woody Allen Doesn’t Make Any Sense)?

Tim Keller: The modern man or woman says, “We can know nothing about whether there’s a God, what the meaning of life is, whether human nature is sinful or not, the nature of moral absolutes, life after death. We can’t know these things,” and then says, “But racism is wrong, violence is wrong, but sexually you can do whatever you feel is right for you.” In other words, morality is not based on a therefore. Morality is not based on any convictions about the nature of things. Therefore, all modern moral prescriptions are baseless. For example, if you say racism […]

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Three Ways the Church Must Pray (and One Reason Why)

Did you hear the one about the five year-old boy who wanted a new baby brother? His father, knowing his wife was in the early stages of pregnancy, told his son to pray every day for 6 months and then he would have a baby brother (and maybe a sister). The young boy prayed daily for two months, but soon quit, unconvinced that his prayers had any tangible effect toward his goal. Six months later, the mother gave birth to twins. The boy’s dad said to him, “Now aren’t you glad you prayed?” The boy hesitated a little and then looked up […]

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The Church Collapses if it Fails to do These Two Things

The church I grew up in was a veritable bee hive of activity, particularly for students. A typical Sunday looked like this: Sunday School at 9:30 Worship at 11:00 Ensemble at 3:30 Choir at 5:00 Snack Supper at 5:45 Bible study at 6:00 Evening worship at 7:00 Fellowship at someone’s house at 8:00 When you consider all of the other age-related and need-based ministries taking place, and all of the other business-type activities required to run the church, it be can be difficult to sort out what, exactly, a church is about at its core. Indeed, when churches become overly focused […]

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What Kind of Messiah do you Want?

Mark 8 is a major turning point in the gospel’s narrative. For the bulk of 8 chapters, Mark works to establish the identity of Jesus. Who, exactly, is this man who so many seem to love and yet so many seem to despise? Finally, in Mark 8:27 and following, Mark shares a conversation Jesus had with His disciple’s about His real identity. 27 Jesus went out with His disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi. And on the road He asked His disciples, “Who do people say that I am?” 28 They answered Him, “John the Baptist; others, Elijah; still others, one of the prophets.” […]

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Making Peace

I’ve fought a lot of battles in my last 20 years of ministry, and I’ve learned a lot of lessons as a result. For example: Some parents of teenagers are not OK with the use of clips from “The Simpson’s.” The only way for someone to get saved is if they are given the opportunity to walk down the aisle and ask me about it right after I preach. $6000 annually for donuts is a wise investment in student ministry. Let kids choose their own roommates for camps and retreats. If you like your Bible study curriculum, you can keep […]

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Crank it Like a Chainsaw: The Insufficiency of Pop Christianity

You may think my 9 year-old son is moderately tone-deaf when you listen to him sing, but he only rivals his father in our household when it comes to being a music lover. His interests are not broad, but laser-focused on one genre: Christian rap. What white boy in a Christian home in middle Tennessee isn’t a Christian rap fan? I once asked Lecrae on Twitter if he knew many of his fans were 35 year-old white men, and he promptly (and publicly) replied, “I know.” It’s a true story that reveals just where my son gets his current passion […]

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Right in Our Own Eyes

I’m struggling to find the logic behind these three facts I discovered over the course of a year or more while reading the news. And the only logic I can find is that we simply want to do what is right in our own eyes. It’s sometimes a crime to kill an unborn child and sometimes not. Doctors can assist in the taking of your own life, but the government shouldn’t use drugs to end the life of one judged to death for taking life. We are killing babies for their brains and growing tiny human brains in a lab. In Judges 17, […]

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Seeking Justice in an Unjust Manner is to be Equally Unjust

It seems like every day I’ve visited a news website over the last week or so, I’ve seen a headline warning about the violence that will certainly follow the decision by a grand jury in Ferguson, Missouri. Certain, that is, if the jury chooses not to indict the officer. Here are the headlines I’ve seen today. FBI: FERGUSON DECISION ‘WILL LIKELY’ LEAD TO VIOLENCE… STATE OF EMERGENCY DECLARED… University issues students tips on demonstrating… ‘If You Do Not Have A Gun, Get One Soon’… I don’t pretend to know the slightest thing about this case, nor do I pretend to know […]

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Two Lessons from the Josh Shaw Ankle Controversy

According to NBC Los Angeles: A USC football player and co-captain admitted on Wednesday that he lied when he said he hurt his ankles while jumping off a second-floor balcony to save his drowning nephew from a pool, the player said in a statement from his attorney. Senior cornerback Josh Shaw first told USC’s Ripsit Blog that he jumped off the balcony on Aug. 23, landed on the concrete and crawled into the pool to rescue the child, suffering the sprains as a result of the jump. But on Wednesday, Shaw admitted that the story was “made up,” and school officials called […]

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Five Lesser Known Southern Expressions

You may have never heard or understood these five lesser known southern tendencies related to our (superior) command of the English language. In the South, you don’t just go to “THE grocery store,” but you go to “THE Bi-Lo” or “the THE Piggly Wiggly” or “THE Publix.” In the South, you presume the person you’re talking with has the astonishingly accurate ability to finish your thoughts for you. For example, “So after I dropped the kids off at school, I went to the Bi-Lo and bought fruit AND ALL.” In the South, instead of saying, “I was once able” you say “I […]

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