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Thursday, April 10, 2014
Exercising discernment is not only the duty of pastors and elders. The same careful discernment Paul demanded of church leadership is also required of every Christian.
Wednesday, April 09, 2014
In my previous post on discernment I closed by quoting 1 Thessalonians 5:21–22, which is essentially the biblical recipe for discernment: “Examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good; abstain from every form of evil.”
A Conscience Captive to God's Word
Thursday, April 03, 2014
When Martin Luther was summoned to the Diet of Worms in 1521 and asked to recant his teaching, he replied, "Unless I am convinced by Scripture and plain reason, my conscience is captive to the Word of God. I cannot and I will not recant anything, for to go against conscience would be neither right nor safe. God help me. Here I stand, I can do no other."
Faith Minus Reason Equals Irrational Unbelief
Tuesday, April 01, 2014
Many people mistakenly think of faith as inherently noble. A once-popular song extols the virtue of faith, or believing: “I believe for every drop of rain that falls, a flower grows.”
No one really believes that, of course, but that is not the point.
Farewell to a Faithful Servant
Monday, March 31, 2014
You probably don’t know the name Will Moneymaker—actually, that’s likely how he’d prefer to keep it. For more than eight years, Will has faithfully, quietly served the Lord behind the scenes in the Web Department at Grace to You.
Friday, March 28, 2014
After providing three exegetical reasons for believing that the gift of prophecy continues beyond the apostolic era, John Piper set out to offer some critique of charismatic abuses. The Ask Pastor John podcast addressed doctrinal and emotional abuses in episode 216, and discernment and financial abuses in episode 217. Piper’s constructive criticisms raised several issues that must be addressed.
Fallibility and Female Prophets
Monday, March 17, 2014
In my last article, I started to address John Piper’s comments in episode 215 of the Ask Pastor John podcast. In interacting with his interpretive claims, that post was getting a little long; I decided to show mercy to the reader, bring that article to a close, and pick up here where I left off.
Wednesday, March 12, 2014
In episode 215 of Ask Pastor John, Dr. Piper gets to the crux of the cessationist-continuationist debate. In his view, modern prophecy is not “infallible, Scripture-level, authoritative speaking,” but rather “something that God spontaneously brings to mind in the moment, and—because we are fallible in the way we perceive it, and the way we think about it, and the way we speak it—it does not carry that same level of infallible, Scripture-level authority.” He claims three texts of Scripture to provide “exegetical reasons” for his view.
Biblical Prophecy and Modern Confusion
Monday, March 10, 2014
It’s been nearly five months since the Strange Fire conference, and we’ve been very encouraged to see how many good conversations have started as a result. The conference dealt with a sensitive, deeply ingrained way of thinking, so the potential to hurt feelings and offend friends was very real. I never took that lightly, but I believed it was important to tell the truth about the charismatic movement and proclaim the absolute sufficiency of Holy Scripture.
Dances with Wolves
Monday, March 03, 2014
Any literal shepherd tasked with feeding and leading a flock of lambs would be thought deranged if he regarded wolves as potential pets to be domesticated and amalgamated into the fold. Suppose he actively sought and tried to befriend young wolves, presuming he could teach them to mingle with his sheep—insisting against all wise counsel that his experiment might succeed, and if it does, that the wolves will acquire the sheep’s gentleness and the sheep will learn beneficial things from the wolves. Such a shepherd would be worse than useless; he himself would pose an extreme danger to the flock...
The Responsibility to Rebuke
Thursday, February 27, 2014
Among many pastors and church leaders today there is a popular rationale that proclaiming truth is the viable alternative to rebuking error. Rather than wrestling with false teachers and their heresies, they’re content to cover their eyes, plug their ears, and “stay positive” in their teaching.
Wednesday, February 26, 2014
What would you call a man or a woman who claimed to receive direct messages from God that contradicted the clear teaching of Scripture? Words like charlatan, heretic, liar, and phony probably come to mind. And yet there are many Christians—often earnest but ignorant believers—who follow and even defend such men and women.
When Silence Is Sinful
Thursday, February 20, 2014
Ignore it and it will go away. That seems to be the tactic the charismatic movement has adopted when it comes to false prophets, heretical theology, and phony miracles. Many charismatics simply turn a blind eye to the corruption in their midst, assuming that if it’s not happening their church then it’s not their problem.