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Christianity Today’s cover story digs into LifeWay and Ligonier Ministries’ research on what American evangelicals really believe.
As I was recently teaching through the book of Ezra, I was reminded of what takes place when God, in His abundant mercy, restores His sinning people. One of those things that takes place is confession. As you study Ezra 9-10, you discover 5 wonderful truths about confession. The first 3 have to do with the “private” side of confession, and the last 2 deal with what takes place “publicly” in confession.
These truths have provided a framework for me to help those I’m pastoring and counseling. They have guided me to make sure confession is being done in a biblical way. In this blog I can only briefly list these things. I hope you will take the time to look up the text beside each point, and I pray they will be helpful in guiding you through the issue of confession as you further develop them and guide those you are counseling.
The truth is pastors’ kids are just regular kids. They give grief. They sin. They must be taught to treasure God and love his Word. They do, however, have unique pressure placed on them that often leads them to begrudge the church. As parents, then, we should put strategies in place to help our children love the church rather than resent it.
Though still a work in progress for our family, here are five strategies we’re employing toward this end.
There do, however, seem to be three main areas of concern with which ministers are faced when contemplating the prospect of preaching through the Proverbs. The first is that after chapter 8, the remainder of the book is a conglomeration of different Divinely inspired wisdom maxims that don’t seem to flow in any particular order. Certainly, there are themes that are clustered together, but many times it isn’t obvious why one or two Proverbs surface in the midst of two or three clusters of others. The second is that the Hebrew language is quick difficult to interpret at points (which is why our English translations vary so greatly), especially in the latter chapters of the book. The third, and perhaps, most difficult challenge is that of knowing how to consistently and naturally preach Christ and redemptive-history from the Proverbs. Here are some resources with regard to preaching the Proverbs that I have gathered as I prepare to tackle the challenge and jump into the deep end of the pool.
The Lord, like any friend that is closer than a brother, refuses to give an idiot keys to a car that he is not fit to drive. And so I get angry. I try to pry them out of his powerful hands. I throw a fit. I rant. I rave. I call him evil and wrong and mean for not giving me the key to comfort.
He doesn’t budge.
And I’m glad.