Tag Archives: Articles on Church

All the Members are Necessary to the Body

All the Members are Necessary to the Body

This entry is part of 7 in the series Diversity and Unity in the Body of Christ You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Last week, I made the point from Paul’s discussion in 2 Corinthians 12 that all members of the church, because of their diversity, make up the unity of the body of Christ. And Paul specifically defends that notion beginning inverse 17 by considering, what would the results be if every member of the body had exactly the… Continue Reading

All the Members Make the Body

All the Members Make the Body

This entry is part 6 of 7 in the series Diversity and Unity in the Body of Christ You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

In his first letter to the Corinthian Christians, the apostle Paul emphasizes the functional diversity and spiritual unity of the Body of Christ. But Paul knows that based on how things naturally work, diversity of function within the body might lead to some people within body thinking that because their giftedness is different than others, then… Continue Reading

Identity in Christ Creates Unity

Identity in Christ Creates Unity

This entry is part 5 of 7 in the series Diversity and Unity in the Body of Christ You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Unity in the Body of Christ comes  due to the fact that Christ baptizes each believer with the Holy Spirit into his spiritual body. This is true for all Christians from the moment of their salvation and forevermore. And if this is difficult for us to wrap our minds around, Paul gives us one more… Continue Reading

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 46: The Persecution of the Early Church and Spread of the Gospel

Bible Narratives Devotional, Week 46: The Persecution of the Early Church and Spread of the Gospel

This entry is part 46 of 50 in the series Bible Narratives Devotional You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Week 46: The Persecution of the Early Church and Spread of the Gospel Weekly memory verse: Acts 1:8 – “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” Weekly hymn:… Continue Reading

Bible Narratives Devotional Week 45: Jesus Ascends and Sends the Holy Spirit

Bible Narratives Devotional Week 45: Jesus Ascends and Sends the Holy Spirit

This entry is part 45 of 50 in the series Bible Narratives Devotional You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Week 45: Jesus Ascends and Sends the Holy Spirit Weekly memory verse: 1 Corinthians 15:21–22 – “For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive.” Weekly hymn: “Jesus Lives, and So… Continue Reading

Spiritual Unity in the Church

Spiritual Unity in the Church

This entry is part 2 of 7 in the series Diversity and Unity in the Body of Christ You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

In 1 Corinthians 12, Paul notes the beautiful of the church’s diversity, as the Spirit of God gifts each individual believers with particular functions within the greater church. But then with that as his foundation he moves on in verse 12 to his primary concern in the chapter: “For just as the body is one… Continue Reading

Love for Christ & Scripture-Regulated Worship 7: Loving What Christ Loves

Love for Christ & Scripture-Regulated Worship 7: Loving What Christ Loves

This entry is part 7 of 8 in the series Love for Christ & Scripture-Regulated Worship You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

I am forming an argument for Scripture-regulated worship from two pillars: the authority of Christ and our love for him  (Part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, & 6). If Christ is Lord, then we should obey him. But we should also obey Christ because we love him. The way Christ exercises authority in the church is through the apostles, and… Continue Reading

The Church and Christian Cultural Involvement

The Church and Christian Cultural Involvement

This entry is part 11 of 13 in the series Citizens and Exiles You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Last week, I made the case that the church’s mission is narrow and unique; it is not cultural or societal transformation, but rather the exclusively redemptive goal of making disciples. Nevertheless, because members of churches may certainly be involved in various cultural endeavors as citizens of the common kingdom, the church does have a secondary… Continue Reading

The Church’s Unique Mission

The Church’s Unique Mission

This entry is part 10 of 13 in the series Citizens and Exiles You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Thus far, I have attempted to establish a biblical basis for individual Christian cultural activity, but when Christians gather together as local churches, the picture narrows to a certain degree. This is due to the fact that not everything Scripture commands of Christians as individuals applies in the same way to local churches as institutions.… Continue Reading

The church’s mission is not societal transformation

The church’s mission is not societal transformation

The church’s primary responsibility in this age is gospel proclamation and making disciples. Members of the church are destined to reign over a restored earth when Jesus returns. But in this age before Jesus comes again, the church’s mission is not cultural or societal transformation. This does not mean the church has no concern for… Continue Reading

Future Union of the Two Kingdoms

Future Union of the Two Kingdoms

This entry is part 5 of 13 in the series Citizens and Exiles You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

The nation of Israel was a union of the Universal and Redemptive rules of God on earth, but as we saw last week, the nation’s disobedience and indifference resulted in a termination of that union when God’s Shekinah glory departed from the Temple. This does not cancel God’s promise that one day the two kingdoms… Continue Reading

Christians, the Church, and Culture

Christians, the Church, and Culture

This entry is part 1 of 13 in the series Citizens and Exiles You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

Evangelicals today are enamored with culture. Visit any Christian blog or pick up a catalogue of recent Christian books, and you will likely find discussions of the cultural mandate, redeeming culture, forming culture, and creating culture. In fact, I would go so far as to suggest that despite differences among various kinds of evangelicals such… Continue Reading

The Benedict Option: The Christian Option

The Benedict Option: The Christian Option

Perhaps the most remarkable thing about Rod Dreher’s much anticipated book, The Benedict Option: A Strategy for Christians in a Post-Christian Nation, is how unremarkable his proposal really is. Yet it is a profoundly necessary correction for an American Christianity that has lost its biblical moorings and become just as secular as the culture around… Continue Reading

The Center of Christian Unity

The Center of Christian Unity

This entry is part 4 of 8 in the series That They May Be One: Conservatism, Cooperation, and the Center of Christian Unity You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

The purpose of this series is to ask the question of whether a conservative philosophy of worship and culture should affect ecclesiological cooperation. For the past several weeks I have been explaining how I define conservative Christianity. Conservative Christians believe in absolute standards of truth, goodness, and beauty and in preserving certain cultural forms and… Continue Reading

Should philosophies of culture hinder cooperation?

Should philosophies of culture hinder cooperation?

This entry is part 1 of 8 in the series That They May Be One: Conservatism, Cooperation, and the Center of Christian Unity You can read more posts from the series by using the Contents in the right sidebar.

There are several adjectives that I happily use to describe myself and my beliefs. The first is obviously, “Christian,” but there are a lot of people and groups that call themselves “Christian” with whom I have significant disagreement, so I need other adjectives to modify “Christian.” I happily call myself a Baptist Christian, which says… Continue Reading

New book by David de Bruyn: The Conservative Church

New book by David de Bruyn: The Conservative Church

I am very pleased to announce the publication of a new book by David de Bruyn: The Conservative Church. The following is Kevin Bauder’s foreword to the book: In 1 Corinthians 3, the apostle Paul compares the local church to a building—in fact, a temple. He claims to be the chief architect who has laid the… Continue Reading

Crisis in Conservative Protestantism

Crisis in Conservative Protestantism

Carl Trueman offers what he believes are three potential crises in American conservative evangelicalism: Far too much power is exerted by wealthy and influential parachurch organizations. There is an unbearable, kitschy lightness to much that passes for conservative Protestant life and thought. Conservative Protestantism lacks a strong tradition of social thought which might help it… Continue Reading

The unique significance of corporate worship

The unique significance of corporate worship

As I have explained many times before, Christian worship should be defined in terms of the believer’s relationship to God through Christ, and thus worship understood this way applies to the entirety of a Christian’s life. This may give the impression, however, that there is nothing distinct or sacred about corporate worship. Indeed, this is exactly… Continue Reading

How Churches Became Cruise Ships

How Churches Became Cruise Ships

Interesting perspective: Reframing the church as the destination triggered explosive growth in the size of congregations. Logic dictated that larger churches, like larger cruise ships, could offer consumers more choices to address their needs and desires. As a result, church growth went from a byproduct of the mission to its goal, and the programs and… Continue Reading

“Churches” or “Christians” and Culture?

“Churches” or “Christians” and Culture?

Richard Niebuhr’s classic taxonomy in Christ and Culture attempts to articulate various ways of understanding the appropriate response of Christians toward culture: Christ Against Culture Christ of Culture Christ Above Culture Christ Transforming Culture Christ and Culture in Paradox One of the problems with any discussions of Niebuhr’s taxonomy is an equivocation, however, between Christians and churches. In… Continue Reading