Consider Christ’s love

Three words are of great importance in any ongoing, vital relationship. Yet these words can often become trite, routine, and meaningless because they are used in unthinking habits. When first spoken, they are powerful and motivating. They thrill the heart and excite and inflame passions. Yet years later, though still spoken, they can become trivial […]

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Look on Christ

Look on [Christ] in what respect or particular you will; cast your eye upon this lovely object, and view Him any way; turn Him in your serious thoughts which way you will; consider His person, His offices, His works, or any other thing belonging to Him; you will find Him altogether lovely. [John Flavel]

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What is sin?

What is sin? Sin is acting without believing God (Rom. 14:23; Heb. 11:6) Sin is not doing what is the right thing to do — acts of omission (James 4:17) Sin is acting rebelliously against God’s Law (1 John 3:4) Sin is doing anything unrighteous — acts of comission (1 John 5:17) Sin is wicked.  […]

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The mortified man

Christopher Love, The Mortified Christian: A truly mortified man is like a warrior:  he will either kill or be killed.  He will kill his sins or else his sins will kill him.  Now examine yourselves in this:  are you only fencers, to sport and play with your lusts, or are you warriors who fight with […]

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Genuine repentance

Zachary Crofton, quoted by J. I. Packer, A Quest for Godliness: [Repentance] is a habit, power, principle, spring, root, and disposition; not a bare, single, and transient action.…Repentance is different and distinct from all penitential acts.…Repentance is not the work of an hour, or a day: but a constant frame, course, and bent of the […]

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Grab bag

Some helpful articles from around the internet: Jon Bloom offers “Seven Ways to Pray for Your Heart.” David Murray reminds us, “All things for good.” Sin too?  All sin is evil. No sin is worth it. It’s always better that we not sin. However, sin is also part of the “all things” that God works together […]

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Consider your own death

What would you do and how would you act if you considered your imminent death?  Specifically, what kind of evangelist would you be if you were convinced of your soon physical demise? Such a consideration would likely stimulate you and me to greater boldness in evangelism, which was the point of Joseph Alleine, a Puritan […]

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A Prayer for New Year’s Day

This morning, Tony Reinke quoted this prayer from one of my favorite devotional books, The Valley of Vision.  It is fitting for the advent of a new year: O Lord, Length of days does not profit me except the days are passed in thy presence, in thy service, to thy glory. Give me a grace […]

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Grab bag

Some helpful articles from the last week:  Here are two helpful resources on Mormonism: Russell Moore writes how “How Christians Should Engage Latter-day Saints.” The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary hosted a panel discussion on the topic, “The Mormon Moment?  Religious Conviction and the 2012 Election” (audio | video) George Lawson writes that, “Reliable Source Reveals […]

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The Puritans on love

We live in a culture and time that weighs the emotive value of love as much more important than the volitional value of love.  It has not always been this way: “Often the Puritans would decide to get married before they knew who they were going to marry.  They would decide it was time to […]

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Knowing Christ alone in ministry

John Flavel: “I determined to know nothing,” that is, to study nothing myself, to teach nothing to you, but “Jesus Christ.” Christ shall be the center to which all the lines of my ministry shall be drawn. I have spoken and written of many other subjects in my sermons and epistles, but it is all […]

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Grab bag

Some helpful articles from the last couple of weeks: A long time ago I began recognizing a changing trend in counseling.  Women were battling with lust and pornography too, as Carolyn McCulley affirms in her recent post, “Lust:  Not for men only.”  She writes:  “We have a message of hope and redemption in the morass […]

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The Old Guys

Many years ago, another pastor challenged me to find a mentor:  “You need someone ten or fifteen years older — someone who has been through the next phase of life — to build into you.” Sometimes it’s hard to find a man like that. That’s when “old guys” can step in.  Those are men who […]

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Book of the Month — a Rare Jewel

The book of the month in our church bookstore is Jeremiah Burroughs’ work, The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment. I first read this book several years ago over the period of several months in my devotional time.  It was a blessing and challenge to be exhorted towards contentment every morning for those 10-12 weeks. As […]

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Grab bag

A few things spotted recently around the web: John Piper’s 8-month leave of absence ended at the end of December.  Last Sunday he resumed preaching with the sermon, “Our Deepest Prayer: Hallowed Be Your Name.”  He also wrote an article entitled, “Why I Am Full of Hope About Bethlehem’s Future,” and while it is written […]

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