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World Champion Speaks Out Against Homosexuality
World pole vault champion Yelena Isinbayeva has spoken out against homosexuality amid protests over new laws in her native Russia.

Facebook Use Makes People Feel Worse About Themselves
In other news, the Pope celebrated Mass on Sunday.

The Christward Collective
Here’s a new blog for you to bookmark. “The Christward Collective is an attempt to help introduce the reader to various aspects of theology, together with the experiential benefits that ought to flow from them. Whether systematic, biblical, exegetical, historical or pastoral theology, we are seeking to help further equip believers for growth in their relationship with Christ and other believers. In short, we long for all believers to care deeply about theology and to see the “cash value” of diligently pursuing such study. This site is a place where “doctrine and life meet.” Nick Batzig kicks off with a post about the use of the Old Testament in the New.

A Tale of Two Fathers: Education and the State
R.C. Sproul Jr. with an effective illustration that “might help us see through the fog of battle in the education wars.”

The Call to do Good and the Call to Work
Matt Perman wants Christians to see their daily work as a substantial part of their good works.

Avoid Bulimia Acadamosa
Three ways to avoid binge and purge studying from Marc Cortez.


$100 of Old Testament Freebies

Buy Jesus on Every Page before August 31 and receive:

  • Old Testament Introduction Course. My 63-lecture, 450+ page introduction to (almost) every book in the Old Testament. Each Old Testament book is summarized and analyzed, with many Christ-centered applications.
  • Cross Reference – Angel of the Lord Video Curriculum and Study Guide: 10-video series on Christ’s appearances as the Angel of the Lord in the Old Testament, together with pdf of Study Guide.
  • God’s Home: A mini-novel with nine chapters that looks at the Christ-centered meaning of the Tabernacle from the perspective of a young Jewish girl, Jerusha. Also comes with study questions.
  • God’s Food. A five-part Bible Study on the Messiah-centered significance of the Jewish sacrificial system.
  • Jesus on Every Page Digital Posters: 8 Digital Posters presenting the content of the book in graphical form.
  • Jesus on Every Page Study Guide Answers.

Just email your digital receipt or a scan of your shop receipt to jesusoneverypage@gmail.com

JesusOnEveryPage.com


18 Sermon See-Saws

Preaching can be biblical without being balanced, without being biblically balanced. Biblical balance is extremely difficult to achieve because the preacher is so liable to imbalance. Factors which cause imbalance include:

  1. The preacher’s personality: happy or sad, optimistic or pessimistic, introvert or extrovert
  2. The preacher’s experience: the preaching he heard growing up, his conversion, professors, present trials
  3. The preacher’s models: the kind of preaching he is listening to
  4. The preacher’s preferences: academic, historical, practical, devotional
  5. The preacher’s gifts: may be very talented teacher but a poor evangelist
  6. The preacher’s fears: if I preach this then so-and-so will get mad, leave, etc.
  7. The preacher’s isolation: detached from the people, he becomes detached from real life.

A preacher is riding 18 see-saws all the time! He must balance between:

  • Old Testament and New Testament
  • Teaching Christians and evangelizing the unconverted
  • Young Christians and old Christians
  • Churched unbelievers and unchurched unbelievers
  • Old and young – different concerns and language
  • Conviction of sin and free offer of the Gospel, law and Gospel
  • Challenging the hypocrite and comforting the trembling believer
  • Narrative, doctrinal, practical, devotional parts of the Bible
  • The different persons of the Godhead
  • Ancient truths and modern life
  • Biblical illustration and modern illustration
  • Heaven and hell, promise and threat
  • Textual exposition and thematic teaching
  • Calm/quiet/slow and passionate/loud/urgent
  • Indicatives and imperatives
  • Helping to live now and preparing for eternity
  • Respecting tradition and reformation
  • God’s sovereignty and man’s responsibility

How can you help the preacher achieve biblical balance?

1. Prayer: He has so many difficulties to overcome and so many balances to achieve.

2. Patience: Don’t judge him on one sermon but over a period of weeks and months. Sometimes he may have to be unbalanced to correct a problematic imbalance in the congregation.

3. Persuade: If imbalanced over the medium-to-long-term, try to gently and calmly persuade him.


8 Ways our View of the Bible Impacts Preaching

Nothing is more important for the long-term health of a Church than its preaching, and nothing more impacts preaching than a preacher’s view of the Bible.

1. The Bible is the Word of God

If we don’t believe that the Bible is the Word of God, we will put human opinion and our own ideas on the same level as the Bible.

If we believe the Bible is the Word of God, we will treat it with reverence and respect. We will not dare to treat any other book or any human opinion on the same level.

2. The Bible is Inspired by God

If we don’t believe that every word of Scripture was inspired by God, we will not spend much time looking at the individual words in the Bible. We’ll tend to skim over the surface paying little attention to the details of the biblical text.

If we believe that every single word was breathed out by God, we will pause and study every precious Word of God.

3. The Bible is Perfect

If we don’t believe that the Bible is perfect and without error, we will set ourselves up as critics above the Bible rather than students under the Bible. By highlighting the Bible’s so-called “problems” we will weaken confidence in the Bible.

If we believe the Bible is inerrant, then we will stick with the Bible whatever any other source says. We will see “problems” in the Bible as problems rooted in our ignorance or misunderstanding. We will come humbly to this precious book and seek to learn as pupils.

4. The Bible is Sufficient

If we don’t believe that the Bible is sufficient in the areas it claims to be sufficient, we will not study it intensely for answers to questions of faith and life. Instead we will turn primarily to human wisdom.

If we believe that the Bible is sufficient for matters of faith and life, we will want to study every part of it, knowing that somewhere in this book is the answer to every question we need an answer for.

5. The Bible is Authoritative

If we don’t believe that the Bible is authoritative, we will not proclaim, “Thus saith the Lord!” Instead, we will venture our opinions, we will make suggestions, we will offer advice. We will put doctrine and ethics up for debate and discussion, especially in areas that cross our wills.

If we believe the Bible is authoritative, we will reflect that authority in our preaching – not with proud arrogance but with bold and courageous confidence in what God has said, just as Jesus did to astonishing effect (Mark 1:22)

6. The Bible is Clear

If we don’t believe the Bible is perspicuous (clear) then we will not preach clearly and simply. We will often use words such as “mystery” “difficult” “who knows?”

If we believe the Bible is clear in its message, then our preaching will be clear, simple, structured, and memorable. We will strive to be as clear and simple as possible even when our subject is the most profound subject or truth.

7. The Bible is Relevant

If we don’t believe the Bible is relevant, we will treat it like a historical document and speak in past tense third person. Or we will just preach the week’s newspaper headlines.

If we believe the Bible is relevant, we not begin with “What does this mean for me?” but “What did this text mean when it was originally written?” But we will not stop there. We will go on to ask “What is its message to us today?” If that was what God meant in that situation, how do I apply that to my situation today?

8. The Bible is Powerful

If we don’t believe the Bible has any power in it, we’ll study it little, preach it little, feel it little, and care little about the results.

If we believe the Bible is powerful, sharper than any two-edged sword, we’ll study it intensely, preach it passionately, feel it deeply, and look for/expect results (1 Cor. 1:18; Rom 1:16)

Summary

A high view of preaching can only exist where there is a high view of the Bible in the pulpit and in the pew.