FeaturedThe Gospel and the Ministry
An Open Letter to Faithful Expositors Who are Filling Up the Afflictions of Christ
An Open Letter to Faithful Expositors Who are Filling Up the Afflictions of Christ

An Open Letter to Faithful Expositors Who are Filling Up the Afflictions of Christ

Colossians 1:24, “I now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up in my flesh what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ, for the sake of His body, which is the church”- Can you feel the apostle Paul’s heartbeat here? He was at that time imprisoned (Acts...

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Gospel Hope for the Discouraged PastorFeatured
Did You Know That Charles Spurgeon Struggled with Depression?
Did You Know That Charles Spurgeon Struggled with Depression?

Did You Know That Charles Spurgeon Struggled with Depression?

A Surprising Truth It comes as a surprise to some that Charles Spurgeon had a lifelong battle with depression. His reputation as a famed and powerful preacher, his cheery wit, and his cigar-smoking manliness might lead us to imagine there could never be a chink in...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
4 Lessons for Pastors from the Life and Ministry of John Calvin
4 Lessons for Pastors from the Life and Ministry of John Calvin

4 Lessons for Pastors from the Life and Ministry of John Calvin

Life Intertwined with Ministry On April 25, 1564, about a month before his death, Calvin wrote his last will and testament. In it, he identifies himself as “minister of the word of God in the Church of Geneva.”1 He served in this role for nearly half of his life....

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Get Ready for Preaching through the Incarnation and the Second Coming
Get Ready for Preaching through the Incarnation and the Second Coming

Get Ready for Preaching through the Incarnation and the Second Coming

The glory of “God with us” shines brightest when lit beneath the things most seemingly God-abandoned. That is why I love Advent. Advent has the power to turn over the inconceivable to discover the unimaginable. I especially love preaching Advent. No literary work...

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Pastoral CareFeatured
Fighting Pastoral Covetousness with Contentment in Christ
Fighting Pastoral Covetousness with Contentment in Christ

Fighting Pastoral Covetousness with Contentment in Christ

There’s something in us that discounts our current circumstances: our lives, our location, our role, our life. We look at others and want more. It’s sin, of course, a direct violation of the tenth word: You shall not covet your neighbor's house; you shall not covet...

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Pastoral CareFeatured
Tips for Seminary Students: Maintain Your Joy in Ministry
Tips for Seminary Students: Maintain Your Joy in Ministry

Tips for Seminary Students: Maintain Your Joy in Ministry

I want each of you to maintain your joy in ministry. Let joy be a hallmark of your service to Christ’s church, and let your joy winsomely commend the faith to unbelievers. At times, maintaining your joy will be difficult. Heartache, setbacks, and discouragement...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Romancing The Call: How Our Lord Jesus Renews Our Passion For Ministry
Romancing The Call: How Our Lord Jesus Renews Our Passion For Ministry

Romancing The Call: How Our Lord Jesus Renews Our Passion For Ministry

Domestic problems, a crises of trust in institutions, an uptick of domestic violence, apparent devaluing of human life, a military spread too thin, widespread cynicism and record low opinion polls of politicians and other national leaders…but why focus on the...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
The Importance of Preaching the Theology of Suffering
The Importance of Preaching the Theology of Suffering

The Importance of Preaching the Theology of Suffering

Learning Obedience by Suffering One of the most mysterious statements about Christ in the Bible appears in Hebrews 5:8: “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered.” The Holy Spirit had just asserted that Christ, though tempted...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Two Things Pastors Can Learn from Spurgeon’s Preaching
Two Things Pastors Can Learn from Spurgeon’s Preaching

Two Things Pastors Can Learn from Spurgeon’s Preaching

2 Things Pastors Can Learn from Spurgeon's Preaching from Crossway on Vimeo. Preaching Christ Spurgeon was very concerned that his preaching address the needs of the people where they were at. He was actually highly wary of having sermon series, saying most...

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Letters To The Hearts Of Pastors' WivesFeatured
Participating in the Life of the Church as a Pastor’s Wife
Participating in the Life of the Church as a Pastor’s Wife

Participating in the Life of the Church as a Pastor’s Wife

I’m from the South. I don’t know what it’s like where you live, but I grew up with the very idea of a pastor’s wife being freighted with expectations and assumptions. When my husband was in seminary in the South-- before we were married--I went to a “how to be a...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Why Your Sermons Should Address Believers and Unbelievers
Why Your Sermons Should Address Believers and Unbelievers

Why Your Sermons Should Address Believers and Unbelievers

Why Your Sermons Should Address Both Unbelievers and Believers from Crossway on Vimeo. Trinitarian Transformation All biblical preaching should accomplish several things. Number one: it should speak to the believer in such a way that it urges him to be conformed to...

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Letters To The Hearts Of Pastors' WivesFeatured
Five Ways that Susie Spurgeon Encouraged Her Husband
Five Ways that Susie Spurgeon Encouraged Her Husband

Five Ways that Susie Spurgeon Encouraged Her Husband

Faithful pastors are busy. However, occasionally God uniquely gifts a man for extraordinary work in ministry. That man cannot be fully imitated, but he can be learned from. Charles Spurgeon was such a man. Spurgeon authored 135 books, 63 volumes of sermons, and was...

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Letters To The Hearts Of Pastors' WivesFeatured
Five Lessons in Perseverance for the Pastor’s Wife
Five Lessons in Perseverance for the Pastor’s Wife

Five Lessons in Perseverance for the Pastor’s Wife

After nearly a decade as a pastor’s wife, I have experienced the unique roller coaster ride that is pastoral ministry. I find much joy in being married to a pastor, but it is certainly not without unique challenges. I want to offer my fellow pastors’ wives five...

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Letters To The Hearts Of Pastors' WivesFeatured
When You’re the Loneliest Member of Your Church
When You’re the Loneliest Member of Your Church

When You’re the Loneliest Member of Your Church

I’m not very good at friendship. I used to be the kind of friend who was as comfortable listening as unloading, but fifteen years of being a pastor’s wife has muddled my ability to be the kind of friend I’d like to be. At twenty-four, I started out with wide eyes,...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Don’t Let Go of God’s Sovereignty over Your Worst
Don’t Let Go of God’s Sovereignty over Your Worst

Don’t Let Go of God’s Sovereignty over Your Worst

Helpful but Hopeless In times of tragedy and suffering, well-meaning pastors and friends frequently offer a religious word that momentarily appears helpful but proves hopeless in the end. As sufferers wrestle with how a loving, good God could allow such painful,...

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Letters To The Hearts Of Pastors' WivesFeatured
Four Truths to Hold on to When Your Pastor Husband is Discouraged
Four Truths to Hold on to When Your Pastor Husband is Discouraged

Four Truths to Hold on to When Your Pastor Husband is Discouraged

“Can you please pray for us right now? He’s so discouraged. I don’t know how to help him. I don’t know how much of this I can bear. For that matter, I don’t know how much of this he can bear.” My shoulders shook as I quietly sobbed in my laundry room. With the door...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
What My God Says That I Will Speak: Faithful Preaching in 2 Chronicles
What My God Says That I Will Speak: Faithful Preaching in 2 Chronicles

What My God Says That I Will Speak: Faithful Preaching in 2 Chronicles

A Plethora of Prosperity Do you remember that song in 2009 by Toby Keith called I Wanna Talk About Me? The song title gives away the lyrics, "I wanna talk about me, I wanna talk my, I wanna talk about number 1 oh my me my..." and on and one it goes. Though this...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Reading Stations Making Room for A Lifetime of Reading
Reading Stations Making Room for A Lifetime of Reading

Reading Stations Making Room for A Lifetime of Reading

INTRODUCTION The following transcript comes from a classroom experience on “applied theology,” or “pastoral theology.” The lecture that day went to the matter of how to incorporate reading deeply and widely into the ministry, and why such a strategy is important....

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Letters To The Hearts Of Pastors' WivesFeatured
Boundaries: A Helpful Tool to Grow in Grace and Love Others with the Grace of God
Boundaries: A Helpful Tool to Grow in Grace and Love Others with the Grace of God

Boundaries: A Helpful Tool to Grow in Grace and Love Others with the Grace of God

Once again, my talkative upstairs neighbor accosted me. It was easier to let her inside and continue with what I was doing than to try to have a brief conversation in the hallway. I was cooking dinner and simultaneously nursing a baby. Our toddler was dropping raw...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
The Dignity and Demands of the Pulpit: Advice to a Young Pastor
The Dignity and Demands of the Pulpit: Advice to a Young Pastor

The Dignity and Demands of the Pulpit: Advice to a Young Pastor

My beloved son, there is something that I want to talk to you about today. It has been on my mind as I have observed our evangelical Christian culture. The matter that I seek to address is that of “the pulpit.” The “pulpit” is a word that signifies more than a...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
If Paul Experienced Ministry Pressure—So Does Your Pastor
If Paul Experienced Ministry Pressure—So Does Your Pastor

If Paul Experienced Ministry Pressure—So Does Your Pastor

It is well documented that the apostle Paul had a hard ministry. He didn’t exactly have an ivory palace gig where he studied the ancient writings of Moses and churned out volumes of commentaries. Instead, he was God’s chosen instrument for the work of spreading the...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Lessons from the Life and Ministry of Anne Dutton
Lessons from the Life and Ministry of Anne Dutton

Lessons from the Life and Ministry of Anne Dutton

INTRODUCTION Among English Baptists of the eighteenth-century, Anne Dutton was known as “the most theologically capable and influential Baptist woman of her day.”[1] Anne Dutton’s hymns, poems, letters, and writings have had a tremendous influence on Baptistic life...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Three Lessons from the Ministry of Martyn Lloyd-Jones
Three Lessons from the Ministry of Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Three Lessons from the Ministry of Martyn Lloyd-Jones

INTRODUCTION The greatest need for the Church today is to have faithful men who will proclaim the whole counsel of God. Instead of feeding the sheep, preachers today have often sought instead to entertain people. This article aims to look at the life and preaching...

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The Gospel and the MinistryAcademic WorkFeatured
Is God Calling You to Church Planting: Two Questions That Can Lead to the Voice of God
Is God Calling You to Church Planting: Two Questions That Can Lead to the Voice of God

Is God Calling You to Church Planting: Two Questions That Can Lead to the Voice of God

Where is the source of the “voice“ that is calling you to church planting? For some, the “Macedonian call” to plant a church is seen in the same way as a call to an existing, already formed Christian community. Yet, this is not the call to the apostolic-like...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Seven Reasons I’m Thankful for Hospital Visits and Funeral Services
Seven Reasons I’m Thankful for Hospital Visits and Funeral Services

Seven Reasons I’m Thankful for Hospital Visits and Funeral Services

I don’t know many pastors who took up preaching because they loved preaching funerals. That certainly wasn’t on my radar as a seminary student. I also don’t know many pastors who genuinely enjoy making hospital visits. People tell me all the time they hate...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Five Surprisingly Effective Ways to Improve Your Preaching
Five Surprisingly Effective Ways to Improve Your Preaching

Five Surprisingly Effective Ways to Improve Your Preaching

I am a pastor who loves to preach. I find joy in proclaiming God’s Word to people. The thrill of watching people’s eyes light up as the truth of God comes to life is addictive. There are just few things that compare. So when I see articles and posts on preaching, I...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
5 Biblical Portraits of Biblical Counselors, Part 2
5 Biblical Portraits of Biblical Counselors, Part 2

5 Biblical Portraits of Biblical Counselors, Part 2

In my last two posts, I’ve pondered the relationship between truth and love in biblical counseling. You can read the first post at Truth and Love: Sharing Scripture and Soul. You can read the second post at 5 Biblical Portraits of the Biblical Counselor.   Couplets...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Five Biblical Portraits of the Biblical Counselor
Five Biblical Portraits of the Biblical Counselor

Five Biblical Portraits of the Biblical Counselor

In my previous post, Truth and Love: Sharing Scripture and Soul, I addressed the question, “Does the Bible teach that in biblical counseling relationships are tertiary?” I was responding, in part, to a blog post I had read by a fellow biblical counselor, Donn Arms,...

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Ministry BurnoutFeatured
My Story of Ministry Burnout: Idolatry, Unbelief, and the Gospel
My Story of Ministry Burnout: Idolatry, Unbelief, and the Gospel

My Story of Ministry Burnout: Idolatry, Unbelief, and the Gospel

Fairly recently Lifeway Research conducted an in-depth examination of the problem of ministry burnout and concluded through its research that only ten percent of pastors left the ministry because of burnout.[i] Whether it’s ten percent or more, ministry burnout is...

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What Biblical Counseling Is NotFeatured
What Biblical Counseling is NOT: Simply Spiritual
What Biblical Counseling is NOT: Simply Spiritual

What Biblical Counseling is NOT: Simply Spiritual

What Biblical Counseling is NOT: Simply Spiritual At some level all our problems are theological. A more controversial statement cannot be made in the realm of counseling, but it's a statement that I truly believe. Since we live in God's world everything about us,...

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Strategic Issues in CounselingFeatured
Strategic Issues in Counseling: Consider the Personality of Your Counselee
Strategic Issues in Counseling: Consider the Personality of Your Counselee

Strategic Issues in Counseling: Consider the Personality of Your Counselee

God has given to each of us a unique personality, an essential component of the way we express ourselves. Personality tests attempt to categories us, but each of us is at some level unique. This individuality requires counselors be sensitive and attuned to the...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Three Ways to Let the Fire of the Sermon Warm Your Own Heart
Three Ways to Let the Fire of the Sermon Warm Your Own Heart

Three Ways to Let the Fire of the Sermon Warm Your Own Heart

I have preached a lot of sermons. I may only be 36 years old, but I have been preaching for fourteen years. Over those years I have preached multiple sermons per week. It is safe to say I have logged some significant preaching hours. One of the biggest lessons I...

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Strategic Issues in CounselingFeatured
Strategic Issues in Counseling: Consider the Context of Your Counselee
Strategic Issues in Counseling: Consider the Context of Your Counselee

Strategic Issues in Counseling: Consider the Context of Your Counselee

When Sarah’s mother passed away, it stirred up in her all kinds of fear and anxiety. She had been living with her mom now for almost thirty years and depended on her for a lot of things. Suddenly she was going to have to be responsible for her whole life. I could...

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Strategic Issues in CounselingFeatured
Strategic Issues in Counseling: Consider the Age of Your Counselee
Strategic Issues in Counseling: Consider the Age of Your Counselee

Strategic Issues in Counseling: Consider the Age of Your Counselee

Time changes us all. Or rather, we all change over time. As a young man I was impetuous and impulsive, but over time I find myself much more careful, slow to act even. As a young man I was far more gregarious and extroverted, but now I tend to be more introverted....

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Strategic Issues in CounselingFeatured
Strategic Issues in Counseling: Consider the Development of Your Counselee
Strategic Issues in Counseling: Consider the Development of Your Counselee

Strategic Issues in Counseling: Consider the Development of Your Counselee

I had totally messed up this case. It wasn’t intentional; I had tried to be helpful and give lots of instruction, listened sympathetically, and assigned homework that I thought best fit the situation. Every week the counselee came to our appointment without any of...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Stuck in a Rut: Responding to Emotional and Spiritual Inflexibility
Stuck in a Rut: Responding to Emotional and Spiritual Inflexibility

Stuck in a Rut: Responding to Emotional and Spiritual Inflexibility

By the time couples, individuals, and parents make their way to the counseling table, they often consider themselves to be stuck in patterns of thinking and doing that seem unalterable. For the biblical counselor, identifying not only the symptoms (presenting...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Three Keys to Saying and Doing the Hard Things in Ministry
Three Keys to Saying and Doing the Hard Things in Ministry

Three Keys to Saying and Doing the Hard Things in Ministry

It was John Lydgate (followed by Abraham Lincoln and Bob Marley) who said something that all ministers must understand and take to heart: “You can please some of the people all of the time, you can please all of the people some of the time, but you can’t please all...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Five Ways to Have a Marathon Mentality for Ministry
Five Ways to Have a Marathon Mentality for Ministry

Five Ways to Have a Marathon Mentality for Ministry

I was always better at sprinting than running long distance--back in the days when I actually ran...in high shcool. My wife, by way of contrast, was and is a marathon runner. One of the things that I've noticed as I have watched her run over the years is that she...

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The Gospel and the MinistryFeatured
Church Planting Mathematics: Four Benefits of Adopting the 10 X 100 > 1 X 1000 to Church Planting
Church Planting Mathematics: Four Benefits of Adopting the 10 X 100 > 1 X 1000 to Church Planting

Church Planting Mathematics: Four Benefits of Adopting the 10 X 100 > 1 X 1000 to Church Planting

I’m not shy about the fact that math is not my strong suit. I barely made it through algebra 1 in the formative years of my education. However, I have an important mathematical equation that may be of help to the church planting movement. Several years ago, one of...

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FeaturedThe Gospel and the Ministry
Four Practical Ways to Faithfully Shepherd God’s People
Four Practical Ways to Faithfully Shepherd God’s People

Four Practical Ways to Faithfully Shepherd God’s People

“You need to know your people and they need to see you as their pastor. It’s important.” Bill said this to me on the weekend before I was installed as pastor. Bill was in his late seventies at the time. I was not yet thirty. “Everyone today says that visits are a...

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FeaturedThe Gospel and the Ministry
Passionate Proclamation: Persuading and Pleading for the God’s Glory
Passionate Proclamation: Persuading and Pleading for the God’s Glory

Passionate Proclamation: Persuading and Pleading for the God’s Glory

Passionate Proclamation: Persuading and Pleading for the God’s Glory “I thought I was going to get a dry lecture!” I really didn’t know how to respond to a pastor friend of mine who said this to me after listening to me preach for the first time. He knew I was an...

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FeaturedThe Gospel and the ChurchThe Gospel and the Ministry
Five Resolutions for a Christian Communicator
Five Resolutions for a Christian Communicator

Five Resolutions for a Christian Communicator

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the calling of a Christian communicator. This could be your duties as a writer, whether blogs or books or articles. Or it could be your task as a preacher or teacher, whether in small group, pulpit ministry, or classroom. To...

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FeaturedThe Gospel and the Ministry
Three Thoughts to Consider Before You Enter Ministry
Three Thoughts to Consider Before You Enter Ministry

Three Thoughts to Consider Before You Enter Ministry

Matthew 10:38-39, “And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it” Has God called you to the ministry? After being raised by Christian parents and...

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FeaturedThe Gospel and the Ministry
Three ways to share the gospel in the midst of hostility
Three ways to share the gospel in the midst of hostility

Three ways to share the gospel in the midst of hostility

It should not surprise any mature believer that the good news of Christ does not seem like good news to the hearer—while it does reveal the love of God, in reality it brings conviction and an awakening that is generally not accepted in an intolerant world—it’s...

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The Gospel and the Ministry
4 P’s in Navigating Cultural Leadership: Parlance, People, Places, and Press

4 P’s in Navigating Cultural Leadership: Parlance, People, Places, and Press

Exegetichism: What a great word! My friend just coined it in a recent conversation. We were talking about four p’s that exist within every insider church culture: parlance, people, places, and press. As we talked about how he felt a little out of place not knowing...

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The Gospel and the Ministry
The Secret To Becoming Irrelevant: Spend All Your Time Trying to Be Relevant

The Secret To Becoming Irrelevant: Spend All Your Time Trying to Be Relevant

The Peace and Love Hippie Hostel is one of Paris’ most budget-friendly, a dingy sanctuary for under-showered backpackers. It was there that I met Derrick. Derrick didn’t believe in organized religion. Derrick didn’t believe in unorganized religion. Derrick believed...

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The Gospel and the MinistryThe Gospel and the Christian Life
What You Don’t Like About Your Church (And why that’s good)

What You Don’t Like About Your Church (And why that’s good)

I have this conversation quite often with members of my church and with believers outside of my church. It is usually sparked by a discussion of something this person doesn’t like about our church or about the church they attend. Now, let’s assume the disagreement...

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