Month: January 2012

Put Off the Flesh Put on Christ

Introduction Colossians 3:5-17 falls within the broader section of Colossians 3:5-4:6 in which Paul gives instructions on living the Christian life. Based on their death and resurrection with Christ and the hope of future life with Him, Paul encourages the Colossians to continue eliminating sinful behaviors from their lives and cultivating Christian virtues. In Colossians 3:5-11 Paul is dealing with the sins of the past. Here Paul calls the Colossians to make a decisive break with the sinful tendencies they have carried with them in their Christian lives. In Colossians 3:12-17 Paul calls the Colossians to a holy lifestyle, consistent with their new identity in Christ. Believers have been chosen by God and stand before him as his beloved holy ones. They are to live up to what they are in Christ. Explanation of Colossians 3:5-16 “Put to death what is earthly,” in Colossians 3:5, is possible because believer have died with Christ (2:20; 3:3), so they can get rid of sinful practices (Rom. 6:11; 8:13). The language of putting to death indicates that Christians have to take severe measures to conquer sin. Calvin calls this putting to death mortification.[1] Watchfulness and prayerfulness against it will be the first steps (Matthew 26:41), with self-discipline following (Matthew. 5:29-30). Sexual immorality refers to every kind of sexual activity outside of marriage. Five of the items that Paul lists have to do with...

Read More

The Sincerity of Our Profession

John Flavel, from On Keeping the Heart: The sincerity of our profession much depends upon the care we exercise in keeping our hearts. Most certainly, that man who is careless of the frame of his heart, is but a hypocrite in his profession, however eminent he be in the externals of religion. . . . It is true, there is great difference between Christians themselves in their diligence and dexterity about heart work; some are more conversant with, and more successful in it than others: but he that takes no heed to his heart, that is not careful to order it aright before God, is but a hypocrite. “And they come unto thee as the people cometh, and they sit before thee as my people, and they hear thy words, but they will not do them: for with their mouth they show much love, but their heart goeth after their covetous.” Here was a company of formal hypocrites, as is evident from that expression, as my people; like them, but not of them. And what made them so? Their outside was fair; here were reverent postures, high professions, much seeming delight in ordinances;” thou art to them as a lovely song:” yea; but for all that they kept not their hearts with God in those duties; their hearts were commanded by their lusts, they went after their covetousness. Had they...

Read More

Book Review: How Do We Know the Bible is True? and Answers Book For Teens

We live in a day when the Bible is under attack by New Atheists and theological liberals who question the authority truthfulness and sufficiency of Scripture. Many of these voices whether in print, television or online mock or belittle the Christian faith. Often times these voices are the one’s calling for others to be tolerant, but they themselves refuse to be tolerant of Christianity. How Do We Know the Bible is True? edited by Ken Ham and Bodie Hodge seeks to answer questions and objections raised by those who attack the Bible. This book covers topics such as the inerrancy and reliability of the bible, the resurrection, contradictions in the Bible, meaning of life, miracles and biblical interpretation. How Do We Know the Bible is True? is aimed more towards adults while Answers Book for Teens Your questions God’s Answers is written for teens. I recommend adults read How Do We Know the Bible is True as it will help answer many questions that many Christians have. I recommend teenagers read Answers Book for Teens to be able to answer questions and or issues friends, or teachers may asking. Both books are very helpful and will help teenagers and adults to know the Truth, to contend for the Truth, to defend the Truth and to proclaim the Truth of God’s Word. While adults will appreciate the style of How...

Read More

Sex, Speaking the Truth in Love and the Gospel

Introduction           Recently there has been a buzz in the Christian blogosphere about how Christians should think and talk about biblical sexuality. While much of the conversation has been helpful, even clarifying, and I’ve benefited from some of it, I haven’t seen anyone thus far take on the topic head on. My main concern and the thrust of this article is to explore the relationship between Romans 14:13 and Ephesians 5:29 by exploring to what degree contemporary preaching and teaching on sex violates those passages and conclude by suggesting ways in which Christians can speak to one another about sex without being a hindrance to fellow believers, while faithfully communicating God’s Truth to a post-modern culture. Romans 14:13 and Ephesians 4:29             Notice the word-play: passing judgment. Paul urges the weak to stop criticizing the strong, and the strong to cease finding fault with the weak. Both parties should decide not to place any hindrance in the way of their brothers. On the contrary—for the negative implies the positive—each group should help the other to become a more effective witness for Christ. In view of the fact that both parties love the Lord, repose their trust in him, and wish to walk in his way, it would be wrong to hour tone another’s feelings by insisting that there be absolute unanimity with respect to every aspect...

Read More

Book Review Gospel Wakefulness by Jared Wilson

Have you ever read a book and thought this book tells your life story? When I read Gospel Wakefulness by Jared Wilson this is exactly how I felt. Jared explains that “Gospel wakefulness means treasuring Christ more greatly and savoring his power more sweetly” (Wilson, 24). This book covers topics such as brokenness, affections, worship, hyperspirituality, spiritual disciplines, sanctification, depression, gospel confidence, the gospel-wakened church and fixing our eyes on Jesus Christ. As I read this book I felt like Jared put to words what I experienced when I was a teenager and in my early twenties. This is not to say that I do not continue to experience Gospel Wakefulness. My teenage years were very hard for me personally as my parents got divorced and there was a lot of family turmoil and what not that continued on into my mid-twenties. Through all the mess of my family life the Gospel sustained me and I grew closer to God while many of my friends who went through the same things fell away from Jesus. I’m convinced that the reason I did not fall away was because the Lord awakened me to the power of His grace. Gospel Wakefulness for me was just as Jared described it “Treasuring Christ more greatly and savoring his power more sweetly” (Wilson, 24). As I finished this book I reflected on what I...

Read More