The Other Side of “Proof-Texting”

Prooftexting

 Grant Osborne, author of The Hermeneutical Spiral writes that “the basic evangelical fallacy of our generation is ‘proof-texting,’” which he describes as “that process whereby a person ‘proves’ a doctrine or practice merely by alluding to a text without considering its original inspired meaning” (Osborne, G.R., 2006). This error as Osborne describes it has played into the propagation of numerous “folk theologies” which have no grounding in Biblical truth (Olson, R., 1999). While acknowledging the value of Scripture memory programs, Osborne also cites the potential problem of utili … [Read more...]

C.S. Lewis’ “Secret Society”

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C.S. Lewis once referred to the Church as “a sort of secret society to undermine the devil.” Instead of exploding onto the scene of a lost, dying and sinful world, he saw the people of God rather emerging somewhat stealthily, subtly and surprisingly amidst a failing culture. Amidst a World War 2 ravaged world, Lewis questioned why the work of God did not land as did the Allies on the Beaches of Normandy: “Why is God landing in this enemy-occupied world in disguise and starting a sort of secret society to undermine the devil? Why is He not landing in force, invading it? Is it that He is not str … [Read more...]

Jesus & the Personality Test.

 One interesting tool in team-building within any organization, including the family, is a personality assessment. My favorite is probably one of the simpler ones – the Smalley-Trent Test. In it, people taking the test are scored on a range of four key personality types based on various animal-types, including the following:The “Lion” – This represents the person with a strong personality who is prone to take the lead in any given situation. What matters is who is in charge.The “Golden Retriever” – The represents the individual who is empathetic, caring and concerned about the … [Read more...]

One Thing God Finds Irresistible.

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I have often pondered the question: What does God find irresistible? In other words, what attitudes and dispositions in man is he the most drawn to? Yes, I recognize that man is basically sinful and alienated from God. Still, the fact remains that God had to start somewhere as he began his plan of redeeming mankind. What characterized the key people he chose? One cannot consider such a question without taking note of two people who evidently captured God’s attention, one man and one woman. … [Read more...]

5 Ways to Connect with God.

Touching God

The Bible is a book of connections – connection with God and connection with our neighbor. It began with a man in deep and meaningful connection with God – personal, close, intimate, and consistent. Within just a few chapters of the Bible’s beginning, however, man forfeited this significant place of relationship when he allowed sin to enter the Garden.Most of Scripture after the Fall describes a roller-coaster of men’s weak attempts at getting to know the God of the universe. Throughout their stories and experiences, one thing stands clear. There is a God calling man back into meaningful re … [Read more...]

Pascal and Pentecostalism.

Touching God

The first time I walked into a Pentecostal church as a sixteen-year-old, I didn’t know quite what to expect. Entering First Assembly of God (AG) in Columbia, South Carolina that Sunday morning in 1975, was different than anything I had ever experienced; I could feel a sense of excitement, freedom, and spontaneity. Then, I heard something I had never heard before in a church service … voices projected other than the pastor’s; audible gifts of the Spirit operating amidst seasons of worship, prophecies, prayers for healing and, yes, speaking in tongues. And, on that day it honestly was the speak … [Read more...]

Does God Need to Move … or Do I Need to See?

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For years as a Pentecostal Christ-follower, I have been taught by example to pray that God would “move”, that God would “work”, and even in some cases that God would “show up” on the scene of my needs and opportunities. Now, after several years of praying and following, I am beginning to think that while God can certainly “move”, “work” and “show up” in any way or at any time or in any form he sovereignly desires, that the critical need of the hour is not for me to try and compel God to do anything, but more so for me to have my eyes opened to see what he already is doing so that I can get in s … [Read more...]


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