Archive for August, 2009

500 days of summer is awesome

I finally got to see the movie I posted about a few days ago.  I loved it, I absolutely loved it.

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Coop on writing books

Coop has a good post on writing which riffs off Bill Kinnon’s post on the same subject.  I have written one thing that comes close to being a book.  The CoveringAndAuthority.com website could well have been book with a little more research and little more filler.  Well…I’d have to have some kind of name to get published as well.

Robby Mac did something similar with Post-charismatic.  He had a great website and it was turned in to a book.  I did purchase the book and it was good but the website disappeared.  I think this was a mistake.  Now the book has passed largely out of view.  The content could have lived on and improved over time.

CoveringAndAuthority.com doesn’t get a lot of traffic, maybe 500 visitors a month.  however 500 visitors a month over one year reaches a lot more people than a good book run, as most books don’t sell more than 99 copies.

It is however in the top 10 if not the top result for several google searches for things like “covering theology”, “submission to church authority”, “biblical submission to authority.”  I get email or comments just about every month from someone who is dealing with this false teaching in a church somewhere.  I’m really happy with how things have turned out.

Someone once asked me if I read any good Christian books lately.  I said “yes: Ephesians and Colossians.”  My friend gave out a faint laugh.  Lets face it, most books are crap.  Whatever good points they have could have been summed up in 10 pages. 

I don’t want to come across as anti-intellectual but knowledge has become an idol.  Knowledge is good, but not if we neglect love while we pursue it.

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It’s love it’s not Santa Claus

I have a confession to make.  I really want to see this movie. I enjoy honest love stories. I also enjoy how some movies and commercials insert the best parts of old 80′s tunes you’ve forgotten about.

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Why bother with preaching?

Dash linked up this post.  In the author appeals to 2Tim 4:2 to say that we can’t get all we need from private bible study we also need to hear someone preach.

2Ti 4:2  (TNIV) Preach the word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.

The word most often translated preach is Kerusso and sadly it doesn’t convey our modern concept of preaching.  It simply means to proclaim something, to announce it. 

Alan Knox has written a couple of great posts on the subject.

Just Semantics (preach)
Preaching in the Old Testament: Introduction
Preaching in the Old Testament: Genesis-Micah
Preaching in the Old Testament: Joel-Daniel
Preaching in the Old Testament: Conclusion

The NRSV and HCSB get 2Ti 4:2 right on this point as they render Kerusso proclaim rather than preach. 

Sadly we read the scriptures through the lens of conventional church experience.  We look at 2Tim 4:2 and assume that Timothy is standing up in front a crowd of people who are listening silently.  Be prepared in season and out of season means keep a good sermon in your back pocket.

Looking at this passage assuming Timothy is in a house church, which he would have been, it looks a lot different.  Being prepared to proclaim the word meant to be ready in every potential interaction to bring the scriptures in to the conversation.  Be patient with it, you have to earn peoples trust before you can challenge people deeply.  Use careful instruction by gently moving people away from the self-destructive concepts they have in their head.  Stay faithful to the truth of the gospel.  Be ready to correct, rebuke and encourage people along the way.

The word is best proclaimed in a relationship of mutual love and trust. 

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If we majored on what was major

About a week ago I searched through all the places where love is mentioned in the New Testament.  I’m still trying to wrap my ahead around what I found.

Paul said it was greater than faith and hope and that it should be our highest goal.

Peter said it was the most important of all.

Jesus said it was equal to loving God.

John said that following the command to love defines us as Christians.

As someone with an affinity for biblical theology I get very excited when I see themes pop up in scripture, especially themes that transcend different authors and types of literature. 

Love is a very big deal. 

In all my ministry training love isn’t mentioned much.  In all the books I’ve read and conferences I’ve attended love isn’t a big theme.  Even with the missional movement and organic church movement I don’t believe love is a big theme.  I think some people in these movements do love a lot.  I believe simpler forms of church make it easier to love. 

I wonder if all the tension over missional/attractional is something of a red herring.  Maybe our churches aren’t growing (or multiplying) because that is our goal and we know very little of sacrificial love.

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How important is love in the life of the church?

Jesus

Mat 22:37  Jesus replied, "’You must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, and all your mind.’ 
Mat 22:38  This is the first and greatest commandment. 
Mat 22:39  A second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ 
Mat 22:40  The entire law and all the demands of the prophets are based on these two commandments."

Paul

Col 3:12  Since God chose you to be the holy people He loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. 
Col 3:13  Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. 
Col 3:14  Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony.

1Co 13:13  Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love. 
1Co 14:1 Let love be your highest goal! But you should also desire the special abilities the Spirit gives—especially the ability to prophesy.

Peter

1Pe 4:8  Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins. 
1Pe 4:9  Cheerfully share your home with those who need a meal or a place to stay. 
1Pe 4:10  God has given each of you a gift from His great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another. 
1Pe 4:11  Do you have the gift of speaking? Then speak as though God Himself were speaking through you. Do you have the gift of helping others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then everything you do will bring glory to God through Jesus Christ. All glory and power to Him forever and ever! Amen.

John

1Jn 2:7  Dear friends, I am not writing a new commandment for you; rather it is an old one you have had from the very beginning. This old commandment—to love one another—is the same message you heard before. 
1Jn 2:8  Yet it is also new. Jesus lived the truth of this commandment, and you also are living it. For the darkness is disappearing, and the true light is already shining. 
1Jn 2:9  If anyone claims, "I am living in the light," but hates a Christian brother or sister, that person is still living in darkness. 
1Jn 2:10  Anyone who loves another brother or sister is living in the light and does not cause others to stumble.

(All passages NLT)

Love is more important than knowledge, more important than programs or buildings, more important than worship or teaching, more important than missions or outreach.  The only thing more important than love is God, and He is love.

Why is it we structure our lives and our churches to make it so much easier to do all these other things and leave so little room to love others?

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One more reason to be in a house church

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