A word for every preacher this weekend

More from E. M. Bounds. I found this personally challenging as I prepare to preach tomorrow at Jubilee Enfield. Please pray for me that I will preach in the power of the Holy Spirit. If you are preaching tomorrow too, then join me in "urgent prayer for Gods presence." We may excuse the spiritual poverty of our preaching in many ways, but the true secret will be found in the lack of urgent prayer for God’s presence in the power of the Holy Spirit. There are preachers innumerable who can deliver m … [Read more...]

Spurgeon on the vital place of prayer

I came across the following two quotes about Spurgeon's view of prayer on a website I was reading. They both struck me so strongly that I wanted to check the sources. Thanks to Logos Bible Software I was able to find the source of the first.But the second quote eludes me, as although it is often cited online and even in books, I've not been able to corroborate the veracity of the story. Anybody know where it comes from? A certain preacher, whose sermons converted men by scores, received a r … [Read more...]

“The character of our praying will determine the character of our preaching.”

I have been very slowly working my way through E. M. Bounds' Complete Works On Prayer. It is packed full of passages which, like the quote I will share below, challenge me profoundly. But Bounds has a way of convicting me without leaving me feeling condemned.We have a choice when we read passages like the one that follows. We can either dismiss them, saying the authors lived in a different time, and that the pace of modern life prevents us from really praying as they did. Or we can make a … [Read more...]

King David: As shrewd as a serpent?

When I read 1 Samuel 29 I have a number of unanswered questions. At the top of the list is "Would David really have fought against King Saul alongside the Philistines he had been hiding with?"It is hard to imagine that the answer would have been yes.David told the Philistine king he would have been a loyal subject and fought his fellow Hebrews. The king believed him, but others reminded him of David's long-forgotten past as a slayer of Philistines, and their view prevailed.This is the same … [Read more...]

Piper responds to Patheos authors’ disagreement over Romans 7

John Piper has responded to what he calls our "gracious demurring" on the man of Romans 7 during the conference here and here, and my previous post on the subject.I love that he took the time to explain his position further, and that we are all able to discuss these matters as brothers and friends.  He is totally right when he says: I doubt that when it comes to a positive description of what the Christian life should be, and what it normally is, the three of us would differ significantly. I … [Read more...]

“The church is looking for better methods, God is looking for better men”

E.M. Bounds was not overly enamored with church growth methods or management techniques. He believed real power comes from a different source: the Holy Spirit anointing a man. Those who want to reject the celebrity preacher culture do need to beware that they don't also reject the way God works by raising up men to do his work: We are constantly on a stretch, if not on a strain, to devise new methods, new plans, new organizations to advance the Church and secure enlargement and efficiency for … [Read more...]

Suicide Prevention: What the Church can do

This month’s Patheos Book Club includes the book, “Preventing Suicide: A Handbook for Pastors, Chaplains and Pastoral Counselors.” By Karen Mason.It is a timely book, and an important book. It has been encouraging to me to see a significant shift in the approach of the Christian community to issues of mental health in recent years.  So, for example, in a recent survey of 1000 Protestant pastors conducted by Lifeway showed 0% of their sample believed medication should never be used to treat me … [Read more...]

Could Piper be wrong about the man in Romans 7 and does it matter?

The three sessions in Romans with John Piper yesterday were food for the soul. They were enjoyable, engaging, and illuminating. In fact they were life-changing.  Nothing I am going to say in this article should in an way take away from that. And I would urge everyone reading this article to take the time to watch the entire series of five talks from this conference online. Three of them are available already:Scripture: The Kindling of Christian Hedonism Free from Judgment, Fighting Sin, … [Read more...]

How I realized I don’t love the Bible as much as I need to

When you are listening to a sermon, sometimes you should write copious notes. Other times you should just capture a few key thoughts. Other times you should just listen as the Spirit of God drives the Word home to you. Last night here at DGNatCon was one such night for me.In fact I believe it was Lloyd-Jones who once said that he was disappointed if people weren’t writing notes at the beginning of his sermon, but that he believed he had failed in his task if by the end they had not all put t … [Read more...]

There is nothing sadder than a rudderless leader

I know I may make a few enemies by this post, but I am going to say it anyway:There are many pastors who should not be leading God's people because they are not conscious of being led by God themselves1 Samuel 28 reveals a desperate King who no longer receives God's guidance. Whatever makes us think we will fare any better than Saul if we are not led by God? The message of the Bible is that if we do things our own way we will fail dismally. If we listen to God and follow him we will … [Read more...]


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