C. S. Lewis on Selfishness vs. Self-Interest. John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods, says business is under attack today. Speaking to the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce last month, he said, "Humanity has been lifted up by business and yet it has been completely hijacked by its enemies who create a narrative that business is selfish, and greedy, and exploitative. " Business provides good context for thinking biblically about selfishness, self-interest, and greed.
Are all business people selfish? Certainly not. But we are all capable of being selfish. There are selfish teachers, physicians, pastors, and firefighters. C. Proper Place for Self-Interest Lewis never disparaged the place of heavenly rewards, but he saw that the paradox of reward might be a stumbling block for some. Certainly, a sole focus on rewards might pander to selfishness. Tyndale, as regards the natural condition of humanity, holds that by nature we can do no good works without respect of some profit either in this world or in the world to come. . . . F.L.E.E.—A Strategy for Pursuing Sexual Purity. We're supposed to flee from things that can kill us. Active volcanoes, oncoming traffic, and snakes come to mind. So should sexual immorality. To Christians in a sexually confused culture, Paul issued this clear order: "Flee from sexual immorality" ( 1 Corinthians 6:18 ). That is, flee from the dangerous enjoyment of sexual pleasure outside of God's wise design for its enjoyment in marriage.
So how are you doing at fleeing? Maybe you are fleeing sexual immorality. Thankfully, God is committed to our sexual purity. What's your plan for the next encounter with temptation? Here's a strategy: F.L.E.E. It's biblical, it's hard to forget, and it fits on a napkin. The seductress of Proverbs 9:17 says, "Stolen water is sweet, and bread eaten in secret is pleasant. " This is why the first step in our flight is to fill ourselves with Jesus Christ, who says, "I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst" ( John 6:35 ).
So, are you hiding? Welcome to Your Ultimate Gluten-Free Guide | Ultimate Gluten Free. #! Gossip, Accountability, and the Myth of Pastoral Infallibility. I recently read a series on gossip written by the pastor of a local church. In it, he defines gossip as “secret slander. Or as one lexicon defines it, gossip is ‘providing harmful information about a person, often spoken in whispers or in low voice, with the implication that such information is not widely known and therefore should presumably be kept secret.’” In the series, he describes at length all the harm that can be done by engaging in this kind of talk, whether or not it’s the truth about a person, and he calls on people to Jesus Christ’s standard of perfection – only godly speech always. At face value, this sounds great, albeit unrealistic. But this series has a sinister undertone.
Let me explain. We live in the real world. We have to accept that people at all levels are going to screw up, mistreat one another, break laws, and then try to cover it up. The Bible provides one model for confronting wrongdoing in Matthew 18. This pastor has shot himself in the foot. 5 Mindsets of “Addictive” Thinking | Biblical Counseling Coalition Blogs. Extend the Same Grace You Preach. I did it for years. I was good at it, but I didn't know it. It shaped how I preached and how I sought to pastor people. If you would have questioned my theology, I would have been offended.
I was an ardent defender of the "doctrines of grace. " I knew them well and could articulate them clearly, but at ground level something else was going on. How does this happen? No one preaches the law more than one who thinks he's keeping it. Resources We Need But there are two specific places where a pastor is tempted to devalue grace. When you devalue this grace, you think it is your job as a pastor to manage people's lives. Maturity in the body of Christ is never the fruit of such pastoring. The goal is not a congregation uniformly conformed to the lifestyle of the pastor, but one that is progressively conformed to the likeness of Jesus.
Rest in Grace There is a second grace pastors are tempted to devalue. Rest in grace for a pastor is a war. Copyright © 2014 by the author listed above. How to Miss the Point: A Guide to Dimwitted Discourse. People have valued reasoned, fair disagreements and good listening skills for far too long. It is high time we dispense with those boring and outdated formalities! After all, why respect the laws of logic when you can enjoy the adventure of following your own passions?
When you get the point, you can only either agree or disagree. How boring! On the other hand, when you miss the point, you open up a fallacy-filled wonderland where conversation and emotions are set free to frolic! If you wish to dispense with the authoritarian laws of logic (which care nothing about you!) And transcend the boundaries of social courtesy, then here are some suggestions for you to try on your entirely subjective journey. 1. 2. 4. 5. 6. 7. 9. 10. 11. 13. 14. 16. 17.
Which Generation Do You Live For? Each summer, from roughly Memorial Day to Labor Day, blue-collar vacationers converge on Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, and make it one of America's largest summer tourism destinations, second only to Orlando. It's a slice of NASCAR and rural Americana, served on the plate of Deep South beach town. For many, just the name of the city immediately conjures up the feel of sand and sunburn, and with it the scent of second-hand liquor, SPF-50, and Old Spice-masqued sweat.
It's a lovely place to have your life changed. In the midst such chaos, and that of other similarly gruff beach towns, Campus Outreach (and other college ministries like Cru and Navigators) is quietly building a new generation of in-the-trenches gospel advancers at its summer projects. At least that's the goal. Myrtle Beach makes memories---often bad ones. Beginning at the end of the previous page, and moving into page 38, Coleman calls for fresh evangelistic action. Here is where we must begin like Jesus. Extra Refills | LA Family.
Culturewatch - Exploring the message behind the media. Author: Mark Meynell Keywords: Political ideology, power, propaganda, media, reality, human nature, trust, love, community Film title: The Hunger Games Director: Gary Ross Screenplay: Gary Ross, Suzanne Collins & Billy Ray, based on the book by Suzanne Collins Starring: Jennifer Lawrence, Josh Hutcherson, Liam Hemsworth, Elizabeth Banks Distributor: Lionsgate (USA/UK) Cinema Release Date: 23 March 2012 (USA/UK) Certificate: PG-13 (USA); 12A (UK) Contains intense threat, moderate violence and occasional gory moments Book title: The Hunger Games Author: Suzanne Collins Publisher: Scholastic, 2008 Book title: Catching Fire Publisher: Scholastic, 2009 Book title: Mockingjay Publisher: Scholastic, 2010 Buy The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mockingjay from Amazon.co.uk Buy the boxed set from Amazon.co.uk or from Amazon.com This is the first part of Mark Meynell's consideration of The Hunger Games trilogy.
Whatever words they use, the real message is clear. The trilogy's narrator is Katniss Everdeen. A man who lives with chronic suffering shares about real freedom. « The Works of God. June 21, 2012 by John Knight Have you registered for Desiring God’s November 8 conference The Works of God: God’s Good Design in Disability yet? You should! For example, Mark Talbot will be speaking on Longing for Wholeness: Chronic Suffering and Christian Hope. He has some credibility on the subject; he’s been living with chronic pain since he was a teenager. One would expect that he would primarily long for freedom from that pain. Yet, after decades of pain, he can write about freedom like this: God sets us free, even in the midst of extraordinary trials! Dr. Like this: Like Loading... Gospel-Centered Parenting. Grace for my Heart | Dave Orrison's thoughts on grace and more.
Home. Harvest Bible Chapel: “Where Have the Elders Gone?” « Blood Stained Ink. Three weeks ago, on June 27th, I published an article under the title: Harvest Bible Chapel: Is Dissent the Same as Rebellion? Since that time, the article has amassed nearly 3000 “page views” with over 100 comments continuing to address all manner of differing concerns [Editor: Page views now over 5000. Comment count now over 170.]. Amongst these concerns, however, appears to be a growing interest in the general whereabouts and circumstances related to the departure of several long-term and/or founding elders. Now, today, Twitter brings us this news from one-time elder, Gordon Zwirkoski, and Grace Community Bible Church, formerly known as Harvest Bible Chapel – Grayslake. Click to enlarge.
Zwirkoski describes the church as “strong and sweet, faithful and true,” while at the same time describing Mike Bryant as a “faithful man both in season and out of season.” Like this: Like Loading... Anne with an E.
JOYFUL EXILES. Are Your Sermons Too Long? Here’s a bit of wisdom from the Prince of Preachers on sermon length: Brethren, weigh your sermons. Do not retail them by the yard, but deal them out by the pound. Set no store by the quantity of words which you utter, but strive to be esteemed for the quality of your matter. It is foolish to be lavish in words and niggardly in truth. There is no intrinsic value in an overlong sermon. Sometimes congregations expect preachers to keep it short, and those congregations need to be conditioned over time to allow longer expositions. A final word from Spurgeon: Do not overload a sermon with too much matter.
Counseling. Desiring God. Podcasts. Kids. Visual Theology - The Attributes of God. A couple of weeks ago I released the first infographic in a series I am titling “Visual Theology.” What I appreciate about infographics is their ability to display information visually. Just as there are many words that can be used to describe any one fact, there are also many ways to display facts. Today I have the second infographic in the series, one that focuses in on the attributes of God. When we talk about God’s attributes we do so to answer questions like Who is God? And What is God like? You can also download this infographic in a high-quality PDF (8 MB). If you have other ideas for theological infographics, please feel free to leave a comment. Recovering Grace: A Bill Gothard generation shines light on the teachings of the Institute in Basic Life Principles (IBLP) and the Advanced Training Institute (ATI)
The Gospel Coalition Blog. "You may run from sorrow, as we have. Sorrow will find you. " — August Nicholson in The Village My wife and I (Ted) were in the mood for a '90s movie, so we rented M. Night Shayamalan's The Village, which actually came out in 2004 but is still a '90s movie in terms of its earnestness and desire to be deep.
It succeeds (in being deep) inasmuch as it always makes me think about the church, and about trends in the church. In a nutshell, it's about a group of academics—all of whom have been deeply wounded by life in a fallen, sinful world—who decide to follow one charismatic leader (William Hurt) into forming an 1800s-style commune on a nature preserve. Utopia will elude humans, because sin causes the dystopia. Recently, my friend Derek shared about what life was like growing up inside the Bill Gothard movement in the 1980s and '90s. The Village and the Gothard arc show that in spite of our best efforts, sorrow still finds us. Here's Derek's story, in his words.  Disclaimer What is the draw? Praying Past Our Preferred Outcomes. It is one thing to be asked to pray for another person.
I'm happy to do it. I want to do it. I must admit, though, I am not always faithful to do it. However, it is another thing to be told what to ask God for in the situation. And while I'm questioning our accepted methods of requesting prayer, I've got to ask, why do we seem to make it our goal to get as many people as possible praying toward our predetermined positive outcome? Praying for a Miracle? I suppose I really began to think about these things during the season in which we were caring for our daughter, Hope, who was born with a fatal genetic disorder. So how were praying for Hope? Not Meaningless or Random If we really believe that God is purposeful in suffering, that our suffering is not meaningless or random, shouldn't that affect how we pray about the suffering in our lives and in the lives of others? What would happen if we allowed Scripture to provide the outcomes we prayed toward?
What Is Prayer? Lions and Levels of Narrative. My husband and I have been together enjoying the Bible reading schedule presented in Don Carson's For the Love of God. It's one of those good plans that takes you through the whole of Scripture. It's also a great way for us to connect with each other around the Word, in the midst of much other individual work, and whether together or apart. We recommend the daily email, which lists the readings and offers Carson's pithy comments on one of the four passages for the day.
Along with the Word itself, of course, a short word from Carson often makes you start the day sitting up a little straighter! Recently we came to 1 Kings 13. We've certainly read this narrative before, but this time its strangeness struck. The Lazy Level You can't help but notice the lion in 1 Kings 13 and wonder what it's doing there in the road . . . which might bring to mind a cross reference or two. The Moralistic Level 1 Kings 13 is about required obedience to God, the lack of it, and the consequences of that lack. Dying To Live – Tullian Tchividjian. We Christians have a remarkable tendency to focus almost exclusively on the fruit of the problem. We do this as parents with our children, pastors with our parishioners, husbands with wives and wives with husbands.
We do this with ourselves. Others do it with us. Like Job’s “friend”, Eliaphaz, we often draw simplistic conclusions about life, ourselves, and others based exclusively on what we see ( Job 4:8 ). The gospel, on the other hand, always addresses the root of the problem. And the root of the problem is not bad behavior. Harold Senkbeil rightly identifies our real enemy: death. “This looks good”, she thought to herself. “My husband and I will be like God Himself,” she reflected. The serpent made sense: it would be much better to know both good and evil than to know only good. “Here, have some.” “This is good stuff. All sinful behavior can be traced back to the death that happened in Eden. It is certainly true that sinful lives are out of adjustment.
Speaking God's Language - redeemer.com.