Archive for March, 2008

Last week I read this in John MacArthur’s book Truth for Today and it convicted me and helped me to increase my passion for lost people. He suggested the following five steps to increase your passion for lost people:

First, study Christ’s great love, compassion, and tender mercy. You can study great men and women in church history, but ultimately you must understand the heart of Jesus. As 1 John 2:6 says, “He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.”

Second, study sin: its guilt, power, and penalty. That will make you aware of how we have all fallen prey to the subtleties of the world. Romans 12:2 says, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.” Let it remind you to be preoccupied not with worldly things, but with evangelizing the lost.

Third, study sinners. Try to cultivate love and sympathy for them, not bitterness. Note that the most zealous evangelists are often new converts.

Fourth, study Scripture. See what it says about hell, death, judgment, and salvation.

And finally, pray for God to give you a passion for evangelism.

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The Psalms are divided up into five “books.” The books are not evenly divided. Yet each one of the “books” ends with a doxology.

The end of “book one” is Psalm 41 which concludes “Blessed be the LORD, the God of Israel, from everlasting to everlasting! Amen and Amen!” The psalm ends this “book” with joy that God is enthroned, eternal, and enduring.

How could book one not end with praise to God? For in it we learn that God

  • watches over the righteous (Psalm 1)
  • will gain the final victory through the divine Messiah(2)
  • is with us in the morning and in the evening (3-4)
  • is willing and able to forgive sin (Psalm 6 and 32)
  • is just (7)
  • is majestic (8)
  • delivers us from enemies and preserves us in times of trouble (9, 20, 34, 35, 40)
  • will raise us up again one day (16)
  • is our Shepherd, the one who guides and protects and will return with righteous judgment (22-24)
  • is our light and our salvation (27)
  • answers prayer (28)
  • is glorious (29)
  • is our joy (30)
  • is our refuge (31)
  • is our security (37)
  • is our help even in sickness and in other trying moments of our lives (38, 41)

Therefore, “bless the Lord, o my soul and all that is within me, bless His holy name!”

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From Baptist Press:

Posted on Mar 25, 2008 | by Jeff Robinson LOUISVILLE, Ky. (BP)–R. Albert Mohler Jr., president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, received good news March 24 from the results of his recent surgery: A tumor removed from his colon is not cancerous.

Mohler, 48, underwent surgery March 20 to remove what was believed to be a pre-cancerous tumor, but he had to await the results of pathological testing to learn whether the tumor was malignant.

Mohler made the announcement during Tuesday morning’s chapel service March 25, to the applause of those attending. He expressed gratitude to students, faculty and friends for their prayers and to God that the tumor was discovered before it turned cancerous. Doctors found the tumor during a routine colonoscopy in February.

“I am very thankful the pathology report came back yesterday clear,” Mohler said. “As it turns out, this is a tumor that turns malignant 100 percent of the time, but was found before it had turned.

“I am now a walking infomercial for all the medical tests. We are living in an age, by God’s providence, in which we have been given incredible opportunities and incredible services by medical technology and medical personnel which can make a huge difference.”

Mohler said the health crisis is a reminder of the uncertainty of life in a fallen world, of a believer’s dependence upon a sovereign God and of the importance of praying for one another.

“We do not know what is within us at any given moment,” Mohler said. “I had no perception, no spiritual wisdom, to know that I had a tumor that was growing inside me. That is a reminder that we can think we are in control, but we don’t even know what’s going on inside ourselves.”

Mohler said he is working his way back into his presidential duties.

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Blog update

I have not been blogging the last few days simply because I have been ministering to a dear friend and his family as he is dying and heading to glory. I have not had to time to sit down to write much of anything.

But here are some noteworthy articles that have been posted by others which I think are worth our reading and thought:

Has the notion of sin been lost?

What do Americans think about sin?

Two upcoming books (here and here) I would definitely get and one I would not.

R.C Sproul talks with Ben Stein (and his upcoming movie Expelled).

For your lighter pleasure. See the video of my son Stefan (I wish) and some others practicing their latest (absolutely incredible) soccer moves.

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For the music 

Here the bells ringing
They’re singing that you can be born again
Here the bells ringing
They’re singing Christ is risen from the dead

The angel up on the tombstone
Said He has risen, just as He said
Quickly now, go tell his disciples
That Jesus Christ is no longer dead

Joy to the word, He has risen, hallelujah
He’s risen, hallelujah
He’s risen, hallelujah
Hear the bells ringing
They’re singing that you can be healed right now
Hear the bells ringing, they’re singing
Christ, He will reveal it now

The angels, they all surround us
And they are ministering Jesus’ power
Quickly now, reach out and receive it
For this could be your glorious hour

Joy to the world, He has risen, hallelujah
He’s risen, hallelujah
He’s risen, hallelujah, hallelujah

The angel up on the tombstone
Said He has risen, just as He said
Quickly now, go tell his disciples
That Jesus Christ is no longer dead

Joy to the world, He has risen, hallelujah
He’s risen, hallelujah
He’s risen, hallelujah

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Here is  a helpful chart showing the 11 recorded post-resurrection appearances of Jesus in the NT.  I am not sure that I understand #1 as this was just the announcement of His resurrection,  so I think #2 is actually the first appearance. Other than that a helpful chart!

May God grant you a blessed Resurrection Sunday!  He is not here!  He has risen as He said!

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John Piper answers the question: What has God accomplished by raising Jesus from the dead? In answering the question he urges us to let these truths revive our passion for the supremacy of God over all things!

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