Strange Fire – A Charismatic Response to John MacArthur


See also the following posts: Strange Fire – A Charismatic Response to John MacArthur My review of the book Strange Fire: MacAthur accuses charismatics of being like Mormons John Piper responds to John MacArthur’s Strange Fire Conference RT Kendall responds to MacArthur’s Strange FireChristians have a long history of disagreeing with each other over doctrine. There is nothing new about that. Sometimes that disagreement can get quite heated. So for example, in the time when Wesley a … [Read more...]

Strange Fire: John MacArthur claims no good has come out of the Charismatic Movement


I've just listened to most of the first session of the Strange Fire Conference. My connection was spotty, so I missed some of it.I know that wisdom would probably dictate that I should wait, listen to it all, even read his book, then respond to it as a whole.But, my brothers have just been insulted. How can I not rise to their defence immediately?As I suspected there was no attempt to demonstrate from Scripture that the charismatic view of matters like prophecy was wrong.MacArthur did … [Read more...]

Why cessationists are wrong about prophecy


Later today the Strange Fire conference hosted by John MacArthur begins. A few weeks back I expressed my concern about some of the publicity for this event seeming to accuse all charismatics of being blasphemers. This event also prompted Terry Virgo to share a video about how Lloyd-Jones encouraged him as a young charismatic.I will be watching at least some of the event online. But one thing I am not expecting to hear is a novel or convincing argument from Scripture. I just want to state … [Read more...]

How will you react when others do well: selfish jealousy or selfless love?


We saw just a couple of chapters ago that Saul's son Jonathan was the darling of Israel, having boldly led the charge to defeat an enemy. He was strangely silent in the whole account of Goliath, where David eclipsed both Jonathan and his father.Saul had already demonstrated he was a a selfish leader so it is perhaps no surprise that instead of welcoming David as the saviour of God's people he was jealous of him, especially when the people sang "Saul has struck down his thousands, and David his … [Read more...]

To live is Christ, to die is gain


I am very grateful to God that, despite Mat Chandler's brain cancer diagnosis, God has spared him for the sake of his family, and for more service.I will never forget him preaching at Jubilee Church still with a closely cropped head of hair because of chemotherapy.He explained to us then that he will never be free of what is effectively a sword hanging over his head. He lives each day as a man who may die tomorrow. Yet with a steely gaze, staring down the congregation as though we were … [Read more...]

How King David reminds us of Christ Jesus


Yesterday's post began to introduce us to King David, who I argued was possibly the greatest character other than Jesus in the Bible. Jesus himself does call John the Baptist the greatest in status, but David's story is given in great detail for a reason.David's story is so appealing for many different reasons. Generations of boys are excited by story's of great battles, and glorious victories, none more so than the one we see in 1 Samuel 17. Which of us don't love the story of the mocking … [Read more...]

What kind of leader should we choose?

David Kills a Lion I Samuel 17:34-36

In 1 Samuel 16 our gaze begins to turn from the failed leadership of King Saul to the emerging leadership of the future King David.David is probably the greatest character in the Bible other than our Lord himself. Certainly more chapters are devoted to his story and his songs than to anyone else. In 1 Samuel so far we have seen rather mixed examples of leadership.  In David's life we will see a much better model of leadership, and we will not see the signs of a selfish, failed leader we have … [Read more...]

Eight Marks of a leader in terminal decline


In 1 Samuel 15 we see a further worsening of Sauls leadership. There is now no way back for him. Yesterday we discussed six leadership errors he made. Today it just gets worse.We must judge Saul in the context of his time when he was called to exercise God's judgement.He disobeyed a clear instruction from God (1 Samuel 15:8) He kept the best for himself rather than God (1 Samuel 15:8) He took praise to himself by setting up a monument (1 Samuel 15:12) He tried to cover up his sin by a … [Read more...]

Marks of an unwise, selfish leader (1 Samuel 14)


In 1 Samuel 14 we see the further evidence of the decline of Saul's leadership. We sometimes talk of losing your leadership capital. Well Saul seemed to mortgage the lot in this chapter. What did he do wrong?He was passive and lacked initiative. Jonathan should not have had to be the one to decide to lead the attack against the enemies. Saul left a leadership vacuum his son filled. It's sad that his own son felt he couldn't discuss his idea with his own father. We can only guess the reason, … [Read more...]

How to learn when to lead and when to follow

There are some passages in the Bible that always make me think of a specific sermon I once heard on them.  For me 1 Samuel 14 will always remind me of a sermon my friend Joel Virgo preached in 2009, entitled The Armor Bearer.  His point, was in many ways similar to the one I made a few days ago.  I urged people not to aim to be the "number one" leader unless it is very clear that is what God is calling them to. Joel made the point that in many ways the real hero of this passage is Jonathan's arm … [Read more...]