There are times in the Christian life when it seems like God is far away, when it doesn't feel like the Lord is near. We know Jesus promised to be with us always, but sometimes it just doesn't seem that way. To be sure, God's people throughout history have experienced this. More than a few… Continue reading Nearness to God and Public Worship (Nye)
Christopher Ash's Listen Up: A Practical Guide to Listening to Sermons is a helpful pamphlet aimed at giving Christians some lessons in listening. This book is only thirty pages long and written at a popular level, so any Christian could benefit from it. In it, Ash gives seven ingredients for healthy sermon listening and he… Continue reading When to Hear a Sermon (Or: When Not to Hear a Sermon)
In the wake of the Reformation, the radical reformers (the Anabaptists) emphasized a pure church - they wanted a church that consisted exclusively of regenerate people who lived holy lives. Calvin, Luther, Ursinus, and other such reformers quickly distanced themselves from this unbiblical view of the church. Today too some people withdraw from the church… Continue reading A Perfect Church Or I Quit
In the early church, one thing Cyprian stressed over and over is the importance of Christians being united with an assembly of other Christians (a.k.a. a/the church). Some Christians were tempted to leave the assembly because of persecution; others were tempted to leave because some sect was pulling them away. Today, the reasons for Christians not uniting publicly with other… Continue reading Lone Ranger Christians?
William Lane wrote several penetrating comments on Hebrews 10.25a. This goes hand-in-hand with an earlier post of mine on Keller's exhortation to go to (and stay in!) church. Of course, this opens the door to the Patristic, Scholastic, and Reformation extra ecclesiam non sit salus (outside the church there is no salvation). Here's Lane: Whatever… Continue reading Do Not Forsake the Assembly