Perhaps we should call it “Faux Pastoring,” with the second word pronounced “pah-ster-ing.” You know, the committing of those little violations of accepted social norms while pulpit preaching. I have been made painfully aware that I have done all but one of the following, which will be left unidentified so I can always say, “I would never do that.”
- Spitting spit while speaking spontaneously (saying that loudly will guarantee you do it).
- Mispronouncing words like “Illyricum.”
- Knocking over the glass of water.
- Having your fly down.
- Preaching from sermon notes out of order.
- Waving your hands enthusiastically then hitting the pulpit mike.
- Keeping your fingers on your temples for way too long while telling the church to think.
- Telling a story that distracts the congregation because they cannot quit tittering about it.
- Rhythmically moving your head side to side but never looking in the middle.
- Panicking because you misinterpreted your wife’s horror over what a child did for something you said, then stuttering for the next five minutes as you try to self-analyze on the fly.
Prepared myself for our study on the Parable of the Talents in Matthew 25:14-30. In comparing it with the Parable of the Minas in Luke 19:11-27, one chief difference is apparent. The master gave differing, great amounts of money to a few in the former while giving equal, basic amounts to many in the latter. Now let’s put them together. We have differing yet great opportunities as His disciples to use the equal, basic gospel knowledge given to many. The key is to believe by faith in the goodness of our Lord by investing this knowledge where we have opportunity. Anything short of this is laziness and unbelief.
Struck me deeply when I read it. The list in Revelation 21 of those that will find themselves outside the heavenly Jerusalem – a list with such descriptions as “abominable,” “murderers,” and “sorcerers” – begins with “the cowardly.” As I read somewhere else recently, the opposite of faith is not so much doubt but fear.
The more you feed self, the more self will eat you.
While speaking about caring for the needy to a church this weekend , I stated:
“Reformed Presbyterians, rightly so, believe that there is a Biblical principle that helps us regulate our worship. The Regulative Principle of Worship is that as we worship we must take great care only to do as the Bible commands.
However, there is also a Biblical principle that insists that our worship is to regulate us. That Other Regulative Principle of Worship is that as we worship we must take great care to do for the needy as the Bible commands.”
Every time we worship, the Lord is examining us in how we care for others. See Psalm 82.
A significant issue in Muslim evangelism is how to translate the phrase “the Son of God” to them. Muslims react so negatively to this concept that some Arabic versions of the Bible are substituting other phrases for it. Christianity Today had an article about this recently. For a superb and studied response to this that shows how Christ’s sonship and our adoption are of the essence of the gospel, read David Gardner’s Reformation21 article.