In the discussion of what it means to be Reformed, and in the consideration of what it means to be a Reformed Baptist (or whatever else you wish to call us), I generally find that there is a gap on the spectrum that is overlooked or quickly dismissed, the gap that tends to be brushed over with the suggestion that there are Reformed Baptists who are not quite (or at all) Pipettes or a certain brand of Southern Baptists or Acts 29 types or SGM guys, but who actually – to use Carl’s words – “hold to more traditional forms of worship and polity.”
Perhaps this is an infrequently shared secret of pastoral ministry; that is, how much of it is driven not by faith in the truths of the Gospel and in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ, but driven by fear. It is very tempting for the pastor to load the welfare of the church on his shoulders and when he does, he ends up being burdened and motivated by an endless and every-changing catalog of “what ifs.” This never leads to a restful and joyful life of ministry, but rather to a ministry debilitated by unrealistic and unmet goals, a personal sense of failure and dread.
Twelve Challenges Churches Face by Mark Dever – $3.99
Identity by Eric Geiger – $2.99
The Ever-Loving Truth: Can Faith Thrive in a Post-Christian Culture? by Voddie Baucham Jr. – $2.99
Preaching for God’s Glory by Alistair Begg – 99¢
Nine Marks of a Healthy Church by Mark Dever – $3.99
Preach The Word: Essays on Expository Preaching: In Honor of R. Kent Hughes by Leland Ryken & various – $3.99
The Freedom of Self Forgetfulness by Tim Keller – 97¢
Practicing Affirmation by Sam Crabtree – $2.97
Orphanology: Awakening to Gospel-Centered Adoption and Orphan Care by Tony Merida – $2.99
Compelled: Living the Mission of God by Ed Stetzer and Philip Nation – $2.99
Vintage Church: Timeless Truths and Timely Methods by Mark Driscoll and Gerry Breshears – $3.99
When you come across the word encourage in Scripture, the sense is make strong, usually in regards to strengthening a person’s resolve so that he will press on in following the Lord. When you understand that meaning, you see that every Christian needs continual encouragement as he lives this Christian life. It is helpful to look at the things the Bible points to as sources of encouragement. Here are four that are drawn from the New Testament.