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Jun 2013 9 Jun 9, 2013
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Many charismatics and proponents of deliverance ministry often speak of ancestral sin and the generational demonic spirits that they believe frequently accompany it. Appeal is made to Exodus 20:5-6 - "You shall not worship them [i.e., false gods or idols] or serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing loving kindness to thousands,...Read More

Jun 2013 8 Jun 8, 2013
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In Romans 12:6 Paul says this about the spiritual gift of prophecy: “Having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, in proportion to our faith.” Some have argued that the word “faith” (literally, “the faith”) refers to those objective truths embodied in the gospel tradition (as, for example, in Galatians 1:23 and Philippians 1:27). In other words, on this view Paul is referring to the reveal...Read More

Jun 2013 7 Jun 7, 2013
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From John Owen’s incredible treatise: The Death of Death in the Death of Christ. “The Father imposed His wrath due unto, and the Son underwent punishment for, either: 1. All the sins of all men 2. All the sins of some men, or 3. Some of the sins of all men. In which case it may be said: a. That if the last be true, all men have some sins to answer for, and so none are saved. b. That if the second be true, then Christ, in their stead suffered for a...Read More

Jun 2013 6 Jun 6, 2013
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What reasons does Jesus give to us for not being anxious? There are eight of them. (1) Worry is unlawful (v. 24). To see this point, we have to go back into vv. 19-24. In brief, worry is a violation of the first commandment: “Thou shalt have no other gods before me!” Worry is idolatry! When you worry you become a slave to whatever it is that you fear. Anxiety is an idolatrous dependence on something other than God. To worry is to serve and subject yourself t...Read More

Jun 2013 5 Jun 5, 2013

It is indescribably disheartening to see how many Christians continue to live beneath their privileges as children of God. I’m not talking about material or financial privileges or even physical privileges. I’m talking about the joy, freedom, peace, and confidence that are ours in Jesus and because of what he’s done for us. It truly grieves me that so many Christians experience so very little of these blessings. They muddle through life fearful rather t...Read More

Jun 2013 5 Jun 5, 2013

[Once again the Resurgence blog has asked permission to post an abbreviated version of one of the chapters from my book, Tough Topics. This time they’ve chosen the topic: What did Jesus mean when he said, ‘Judge not, that you be not judged’? If this interests you, I suggest you read the much longer chapter in the book. Short of that, here is the edited version from Resurgence.] Whereas it comes as no surprise that most Christians have at least one favo...Read More

Jun 2013 4 Jun 4, 2013

We left off in the previous article after the third of six observations related to Paul’s prayer in 2 Thessalonians 3:5. There the apostle prayed: “May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ.” (4) My fourth observation concerns the reality of the love of God for you and me. Having dealt with victims of virtually every imaginable form of abuse or sin, both rich and poor, both well known and anonymous, I’v...Read More

Jun 2013 4 Jun 4, 2013

Part of the genius of Jonathan Edwards’s conception of the will and genuine human freedom is the way in which he can affirm how the latter is compatible with necessity. Here’s how he did it. If a person should choose evil in consequence of that necessity which is external to his will and imposed upon him by constraint of natural forces, he is absolved from moral responsibility. But if he behaves unlawfully because of a necessity that is in his will and consi...Read More

Jun 2013 3 Jun 3, 2013

“May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ” (2 Thess. 3:5). As I noted in the previous post, Paul’s aim in this prayer is to remind us that if we hope to endure and press through seasons where all we can think of is quitting, we need to experience the reality of God’s abiding affection for his children. So let me make several observations, some of which are in the form of a question, some are principles...Read More

Jun 2013 2 Jun 2, 2013

I dare say that all of us, at some time or other in the course of our Christian lives, reach the point at which we feel we can’t go on any farther, any longer. The obligations and responsibilities and duties that lay ahead of us are simply overwhelming. The demands placed on us by work and family and church feel insurmountable and suffocating. The expectations that well-meaning friends put upon us are unrealistic and the burden is simply too much to bear. We feel p...Read More