Author: Grant Castleberry

Dear Engaged Couple

I wrote this short letter as I prepared to officiate my first wedding earlier this summer. As I wrote, I realized that I was writing not just for them but for numerous couples I knew and cared about who were also about to enter into marriage together. This letter is for them and for many others who want their marriage to count for eternity. Dear Engaged Couple, As you prepare to embark on this life-long journey together, I thought I would share a brief word of wisdom. As you know, getting married is serious business. Jesus says that marriage...

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Improving Your Preaching

Earlier this summer I had a conversation with David Prince and he mentioned to me that he was thoroughly enjoying H. Grady Davis’ Design for Preaching. Davis was a Lutheran pastor and then homiletics professor at Chicago Lutheran Seminary, and he published this work on preaching in 1958. Even though the book was written over a half-century ago, I have resonated with Davis and his ideas on preaching. His plea for preachers to unleash the “gospel” and the “Word of God” is still needed today. For example, paragraphs like this have been convicting and inspiring: The Word of God differs from all our...

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Real Christian Leadership

Through my time playing 5A Texas high school football, participating in the Corps of Cadets at Texas A&M University, and later serving as an officer in the United States Marine Corps, and now serving at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, I have encountered some incredibly gifted leaders. Men whose personalities seem larger than life; men that have the unique ability to influence everyone around them, not because of their rank or title, but purely based on their personality and proficiency. Men that people talk about affectionately when they are not around and drive hundreds of miles just to hear them speak and possibly spend a few moments with them. You have probably known these types of men as well; men that inspire in their leadership. Interestingly, over the past twenty years, the study of “leadership” has emerged at the forefront in Western culture. I even took several “leadership” classes in college. And why shouldn’t leadership take such a prominent role? With the direction that Western culture is heading, the church needs all the great leaders she can get. However, despite the emphasis on leadership training, leadership conferences, and leadership books, there is still a great lack of Christian leaders that fit what I described above. A Picture of Christian Leadership I think there are several factors contributing to the leadership void in the church. Part of the problem is...

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Church Series: Church Discipline and the Mercy of the Good Shepherd

Editors note: This is a brand new series on the Church designed to help people think through what the local Church is, and why it is important. The first post in this series was by Dan Darling on 5 Ways You Can Help Your Church. Mike Leake wrote the second post in this series on 7 Ways to Create a Reading Culture in your Church. The third post was written by Dave Jenkins on 5 Reasons We should Gather in Local Churches. Dan Darling wrote the fourth post in this series on the best way to help your church....

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