Viewing posts tagged Teachers

Teaching the Teachers

2 Week Bible Training for Thai CCC Ministers of the Gospel.  Some of the books used are only available in English.  So, guess who gets to “help the staff with their homework” each day…?

I’m not qualified by any standard of graduating from this and that place, so my job was not officially, “teaching,” but technically reading the English books before class, and then teaching, I mean, telling the staff what the books said.  There you have it.

The first week we discussed the basis of systematic theology and the doctrine of the Word of God.

The second week was all about the Gospel and the foundations of it, and the response to it.  The character of God, God’s standard for all mankind, our sinful rejection of our Maker, our sinful nature, and God’s righteous judgment and wrath towards us, the love of God at the cross of Christ, atonement, repentance, faith, new birth/regeneration, Biblical assurance of salvation based on the promises of God, the witness of the Holy Spirit, and the witness of new-creation life in us.

Basically, all the stuff that I teach all the time, and all the stuff I will spend a lifetime teaching – (as I spend a lifetime learning).

Praise God for the continued opportunities I have all the time to teach and preach Jesus.  May  these two weeks bring about life and ministry change – not just head knowledge.


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Platt: Are We Designing Church for Comfort or the Cause?


We need to explore different ways to multiply the Gospel more effectively that are not dependent on large budgets, staff, and buildings.


David Platt admits that his own congregation is “wrestling” with the way they look at what the Gospel demands of them. “We certainly have a long way to go, but this is a journey worth taking for the sake of God’s people accomplishing God’s purpose for God’s glory,” Platt, senior pastor of The Church at Brook Hills, Birmingham, AL, says.

He shares his hopes and misgivings for ministry in Radical: Taking Back Your Faith from the American Dream(Multnomah Books/Random House, 2010). Church Executive asked him a few questions, and he responded with some provocative answers:

More is being said recently by pastors that we have converts but not disciples, that too many Christians are nominal in their faith, that they love the label of being Christian but don’t want to live out the life of being a Christian. Does any of this resonate with your concerns?

Sure. The commands of Christ that we deem “radical” are in reality normal for any follower of his.

What does it mean to be radical about our faith and replace it with what is comfortable?

We have a tendency to design our Christian lives and our churches around what appeals to personal comfort and preference when the Gospel actually beckons us to die to these things. Our lives and our churches are never intended to be designed for more pleasure and ease in this world, but for the sake of treasure in eternity.

Given that, how then should it play out in our crowds, buildings, and budgets?

We stop designing church to appeal to our comforts, spending our millions of dollars on buildings that can house crowds and support programs designed around ourselves. This is not Christianity. We have come up with strange methods for following a Savior who didn’t even have a roof over his head. We need to explore different ways to multiply the Gospel more effectively and efficiently, in ways that aren’t depending on large budgets, staffs, and buildings.

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Why Jesus Had to Die

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Can you remember the most painful moment of your life?

There are different types of pain. There is physical pain. Perhaps you’ve had a horrible fall and broke an arm or a leg, or worse. It’s an interesting thing how the human body will sort of “shut down” temporarily when it’s in a state of shock, so that it doesn’t feel the pain as severely.

But there are other kinds of pain that can actually be worse than physical pain: the pain of rejection, betrayal, or abandonment, for example. When a husband says to his wife, “I’ve been unfaithful to you.” When a wife says to her husband, “I want a divorce!” When the child says to the parent, “I don’t want to live the Christian life.” Or when you are betrayed by a friend, perhaps someone you’ve done so much for. It cuts like a knife.

Hebrews 12:3 says, “Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted.” To consider means “to think over, ponder, or compare.” So let’s consider what the cross was to Jesus himself. For Jesus, the cross was a fate worse than death. Indeed it was death, and a very cruel one at that. It can’t get much worse than that, but for Jesus…

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The Identity of a Biblical Man

The following – all credit to Mars Hill Church.

We’re going to take a look at biblical manhood over the next few weeks on the blog, beginning with this article from Pastor Mark.

Men are prone toward chauvinism or cowardice: too much or too little.

The key is to understand the Gospel. The perfect man is Jesus. The man who we were supposed to be like is Jesus. Our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, comes into human history to live life as the perfect man—God-man to be sure, but perfect man nonetheless.

Men, you and I need to take our cue for masculinity from Jesus. The key to masculinity is this: Jesus takes responsibility for himself (he works a job), and he also takes responsibility for me. The cross is where Jesus substituted himself and died in my place for my sins. My sins are my fault—not Jesus’ fault—but Jesus has made them his responsibility.

This is the essence of the Gospel. If you understand this, it will change how you view masculinity…

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The World is Filled With Boys Who Can Shave

the following all credit to Mars Hill Church.  Visit them here:


The world today is filled with boys who can shave.

Historically, a guy would go through two life phases: boy, then man. The transition from boy to man was comprised of five sociological variables that happened almost simultaneously or in very close succession: Leave your parents’ home (Gen. 2:24); finish your education or vocational training; start a career-track job, not a dead-end-Joe one; meet a woman, love her, honor her, court her, and marry her; have children with her.

But here’s what’s happened. Rather than moving from boy to man by this succession of sociological transitions, we’ve created something called adolescence. It’s a third life stage in the middle between boy and man. We don’t know what to call them so we just call them “guys.” These are boys who can shave.

Today, adolescence starts somewhere in the teen years and continues indefinitely. There is no foreseeable end. The problem with adolescence is guys don’t know when they’re ever going to grow up and be men, and no pressure is exerted on them to do so.

Is it when you’re 16 and you can drive? Or 18, when you can vote and join the military? Or 21, when you can drink? Is it when you graduate from college after you’ve worked on your undergrad degree for seven or eight years? Is it when you get married? Is it when you have kids? Is it when you buy a house? No one knows. So, we are left with indefinite adolescence and a Peter Pan Syndrome epidemic where men want to remain boys forever.


So where do you go? Go to Scripture. Go to Scripture. …

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Why Men Are Cultivators, Warriors, And Sages

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Why Men Are Cultivators, Warriors, And Sages

The following is excerpted from the sermon “Men and Masculinity“, from the original 2001 Proverbs sermon series, as part of our look at biblical manhood here on the blog. In it, Pastor Mark discusses three specific aspects of a man’s identitycultivatorwarrior, andsage– as found in scripture.


A man is created to be a cultivator. God creates the earth and all of creation, which at that time, according to Genesis 2, is untamed, wild land. But there’s one part of creation that is tamed: the Garden of Eden. There are orderly trees and shrubs; it’s cultivated. And God puts the man, Adam, in that garden and he tells that man to fill the earth and subdue it, which is a lot of work. God tells him to be fruitful and increase in number and cultivate the whole earth. You will find that men, because they’re made in the image and likeness of God, are cultivators. They love to create something. And once something is made, they like to cultivate it and nurture it so that it continues to progress.

Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger

Some guys do this with their car. Even if the car is running fine, they have to take it apart. They put it together, it doesn’t go fast enough, so they take it apart and then make it go faster. That’s what guys do. Other guys are always working on the house, and running to Home Depot is like going to Mecca. Or maybe they’re into computers and electronics and are always updating their equipment. “It’s not big enough.” “It’s not fast enough.” “The speakers aren’t big enough. “We need to upgrade.” Upgrade, upgrade, upgrade. That’s the chant of a man. Men do this because they’re cultivators. They want to build things. And once they’re built, they want them to improve and keep moving, keep going. In addition, they’re supposed to cultivate their wives – love, nurture, encourage, build – so that the woman becomes like Psalm 128 says, “a fruitful vine.” They’re supposed to cultivate children and give them wisdom and discipline, and pour into those kids, and see those kids progress. They’re supposed to pour into their business. They’re supposed to pour into their physical body. They’re supposed to pour into their home, into whatever it is that God has given them.The problem is, if a man doesn’t love God, he cultivates the wrong things. He cultivates sin. He nourishes and nurtures rebellion and death. Cultivation can be bad, like the creation of the tower of Babel. It could be good, like Noah building the ark out in the middle of the desert. When the man sins against God in the things he cultivates, God doesn’t just curse the man, he curses the ground under the man. What that means is, everything under the man’s dominion now starts to fight against him. Whatever it is you’re trying to cultivate, you will find that it always fights against you. A lot of guys say, “Well, pretty soon I’m going to have all my bills paid, and my car will be running, and my house will be done. Whew. I’ll be done.” And it never comes together. Humpty Dumpty always comes off the proverbial wall. You never get it all together. You never have enough money. You never have enough hours. You just can’t ever get on top of it. Why is that? Because God has cursed everything that’s under the man. Why did he do that? Because he loves the man.

God cursed his branches.

When the man is trying to subdue and harness everything under his dominion to do what he desires for it to do, and it all fights against him, it teaches him about God: The ground is doing to the man what the man does to the Lord. The man asks, “Why is this so hard? Why is everything fighting me? Why is it in rebellion?” And God says, “Because you’ve sinned, and you’re doing the same thing to me.” So the man starts to understand the gospel as he’s working. The more a man works and takes responsibility, and becomes a husband and a father, and buys a home, and runs a business, the more likely he is to make sense out of the gospel. Because he’ll feel what it’s like to have something rebel against you when you’re trying to bring order out of chaos.

All credit to Mars Hill.  Continue Reading at Mars