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Wednesday, October 29, 2008

No longer here....

If you ever read this blog.... then stop and read this one instead... www.newcastlehilton.wordpress.com

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Chandler on gospel motivations...

Matt Chandler, pastor of the Village Church Dallas, comments on things that disturb him about church planters and the conversations that he is having.... a timely reminder to check our priorities... see the rest on his blog

The truth is I didn’t become the pastor of a church in the suburbs of Dallas because I had a grand vision for growing a dynamic, life-transforming, church-planting, Gospel-preaching, God-centered church. I took the position because after a great deal of conversations, prayers and fasting, my wife and I felt it was the direction God, through the Holy Spirit, was leading us. I came to The Village because I thought that by doing so I would get to see more of Him, experience more of Him, sense more of Him, see more of me die, more of my flesh perish, the old man in me lose more power…He is the great end that I am after. He is why. In 1 Timothy 4:10 Paul writes “For to this end we toil and strive, because we have our hope set on the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially of those who believe. I love that verse. We toil, yes. We strive, yes, but where is our hope? What, or rather, who is the goal? I love preaching the Gospel and I love planting churches but I do those things because in them there is this unbearable weight of His presence. This crushing majesty that makes me want to cry, sing and scream all at the same time.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Keller on church plants...

The vigorous, continual planting of new congregations is the single most crucial strategy for 1) the numerical growth of the Body of Christ in any city, and 2) the continual corporate renewal and revival of the existing churches in a city. Nothing else--not crusades, outreach programs, para-church ministries, growing mega-churches, congregational consulting, nor church renewal processes--will have the consistent impact of dynamic, extensive church planting.

Is he right?? What does he mean by church planting? I think in Australia when we say church planting we mean small struggling one man show? Is that necessary?

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

The Sola Panel | Don’t wait ‘til you say goodbye

The Sola Panel | Don’t wait ‘til you say goodbye

Posted using ShareThis

Friday, July 11, 2008

Why can't you guys just agree and get on with helping the world?"

Ray grew up as a Catholic and speaks openly and frankly about the differences between the Roman Catholic Church and the Protestant Church. Listen to the main body of the talk here.

Let it go through to the keeper....

Been spending stacks of time with people lately. I love getting out of my office and spending more time with people. The question I am constantly faced with as i do that is: "How much do I let go through to the keeper?"

My tendency is to whack everything on the head that errs on the side of erroneous thought. However, experience has taught me this is not always the most loving approach or the most effective approach.

The present circumstance is that I spending time with some blokes who are:
(a) brand new Christians, one of whom has been converted in an environment that leans heavily on experience; or
(b) have recently joined us from completely different Christian stables.

Hence, the issues that come up again and again are issues of godliness (I don't think I've ever had the Bible open on the table in Cafe before with f-bombs flying from the same table); or theological issues to do with God's sovereignty, the work of the Holy Spirit, the place of exorcisms in a Christians life, understanding suffering, God's role in evangelism, the place of works and preaching in evangelsim and so on.

And I'm constantly finding myself asking the question of God: which ones should I be letting go through to the keeper? When do you tackle an issue head on, when do you let it go and pray that God will complete his work in people, when do you try and deal with the issue from another angle? When do you wait for it to come up in the preaching program or at Bible Study?

When I think about my own walk with God it encourages me that God will do his work in people in his own time. I often find myself longing for the same patience God had with me.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Puzzling verses in a masive chunk of Scripture...

The gospel of Luke is a wonderfully rich narrative. I have chosen to preach next weekend on Luke 11:14-12:12. Jesus is on his way to Jerusalem and the hostility towards him is on the rise. In this chunk of Scripture Jesus doesn't hold back. He has super Jesus like insight into their hearts and proceeds to pulverize the Pharisees and the crowds with his truthful rhetoric.

Near the end of this section of Scripture are these words in Luke 12:8-12...

8"And I tell you, everyone who acknowledges me before men, the Son of Man also will acknowledge before the angels of God, 9but the one who denies me before men will be denied before the angels of God. 10And everyone who speaks a word against the Son of Man will be forgiven, but the one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven. 11 And when they bring you before the synagogues and the rulers and the authorities, do not be anxious about how you should defend yourself or what you should say, 12 for the Holy Spirit will teach you in that very hour what you ought to say."

Questions I have about these verses:

1. Is he speaking to the disciples or should we assume that his words now reaching the ears of the Pharisees?
2. What does it look like to blaspheme the Holy Spirit? Are the Pharisees guilty of this? Surely, they are already guilty of blasphemous words against the Son of Man (cf. Luke 11:14-28). What else do they need to do to blaspheme agaist the Holy Spirit?
3. Is this a danger for the disciples; and do we see an example of both blaspheming the Son of Man, and blaspheming the Holy Spirit in the testimonies of Peter and Judas??

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Genesis 1 Wordle

At the request of Justin...

The Wordle Game

Justin is playing the Wordle game. The challenge was to Wordle your sermons @ Wordle.net

Here are my last 2 talks:

Luke 10:1-24

Luke 10:25-42