Donald Sterling, Secret Conversations, and the Image of God

By now you've heard reports about the reprehensible and racist comments of Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling. This is a news story that now transcends sports, with repeated calls for boycotts of Clipper games, demands for punishment for Sterling, and even admonishment from President Obama. Update: The NBA has made the decision to ban Donald Sterling for life and the Board of Governors will vote to force Sterling to sell the Clippers franchise. They also fined him $2.5 million dollars. If you are an NBA fan like me, you’ll know that Donald Sterling is a known curmudgeon, a highly ineffective owner, and a generally un-liked fellow. So we might be tempted to consider what he said to be merely the rantings of an out of touch, stuck-in-the-1950's old man. We might ask why should Christians care what the owner of an LA sports team says? But I think we should care, for...

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Preaching about sexuality in a post-Christian context

A few weeks ago I wrote an op-ed for CNN countering the narrative that to preach a faithful, biblical sexual ethic is turning young people away from the Church. To continue that conversation, I had the opportunity to interview my good friend, Dean Inserra, founder and lead pastor of City Church, Tallahassee, Florida. What I love about Dean is two things: He's unflinchingly biblical and yet winsome and loving in his approach. He pastors in a cross-section of college students from Florida State, Bible belt Christians, and political types in Florida's capital. He says, "The Church is one of the few places, if not the only place, in society where people from all spheres of influence come to gather." ...

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A Subtle, but Powerful Way to Love Your Spouse

There are all sorts of big and small ways to show love to your spouse. One of the easiest, but powerful ways to demonstrate this is to talk about them positively in public. This one reason I am so grateful for Angela. She has to live with my sinful tendencies, my human weaknesses, and my annoying quirks. There is a lot of material from which she could easily draw when talking with her girlfriends or other friends. And yet Angela has always talked well about me in public. It's a small thing, but it's a big thing to me. If she has a problem with me, she tells me. But never does she send a message through passive-aggressive shots delivered while in public. I appreciate and love her for that and I try very hard to return the favor. I'm amazed at how often I hear good, faithful Christian couples undermine each...

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Preparing Our Hearts for Easter

How should Christians prepare their hearts this Easter? I asked this of Andreas Kostenberger, research professor of New Testament and Biblical Theology at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest and author of the new book, The Final Days of Jesus coauthored with Justin Taylor. It's a terrific resource, harmonizing the gospel accounts of Jesus' arrest, trial, death, and resurrection. What advice would you give Christians in preparing their hearts this Holy Week? Take Easter week as an opportunity to reflect on the essence of your faith, on what the gospel is all about. Make sure you understand the key elements of the biblical story of Jesus' final days on earth so you can pass it on to others, especially to the next generation. That's why I'm particularly excited to use The Final Days of Jesus as a tool with my own children as we read through what happened each day of Easter week –...

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