Pentecost, Pastoring and Intentional Friendships

Here are three of my latest articles: "So You Want to Make Disciples?" for In Touch Conversions usually result from deliberate, genuine friendship building. This involves intentionally inserting ourselves in environments where unbelievers are present. It includes leveraging our natural human talents to find common ground and build friendships. It requires patience, not trying to “close the deal” but coming alongside, seeking a person’s good, and learning to grow in relationship. "6 Ways to Pastors Can Equip Churches To Engage Cultural Issues" for ERLC When pastors fail to equip their people to think biblically about issues, they cede authority to the high priests of culture: the talk show hosts, cable news hosts and online opinion-makers. People will go somewhere to have their consciences formed. Why isn’t the church their first choice? "From Every Nation Under Heaven" - for In Touch The promise of Pentecost is that the gospel reverses this curse, undoing the confusion of the Tower...

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Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus

Nabeel Qureshi grew up in a Muslim home, but came to faith in Christ after a search for meaning and truth. He tells his conversion story in a new book,  Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus: A Devout Muslim Encounters Christianity. I had the chance to interview Nabeel today for my weekly Leadership Journal blog. This is one of the questions I asked him: What finally drove you to a point of decision between Islam and Christianity? What was holding you back—and what finally drove you forward? The first thing that had to happen was that someone had to show me the truth about Christianity. Only when I saw the truth would I be able to assess whether I would follow it or not. David didn't just tell me why he believed in the gospel, he showed me how we could be confident it is true and therefore everyone should believe it. The historical evidence he provided...

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Don’t Be the Hero of Your Own Story

I recently wrote this for my weekly teen Crosswalk.com devo:  If you and Abraham were in Heaven, relaxing over a sweat tea in rocking chairs (I know Heaven isn’t like Cracker Barrell, but that’s the best I can do right now), I think he would tell you that his little weekend trip to Egypt (Genesis 12:10-13:4) was one of the dumbest moves he made. I’m not saying this lightly, because for me to say anything this man of faith did was dumb is like me chiding Aaron Rogers for not throwing a tight enough spiral. But Genesis clearly portrays Abraham’s move as being misguided at best. Think about how it played out. He almost lost his wife to Pharaoh. He caused God to send plagues on Pharaoh, which I’m sure made that world ruler’s day. He also picked up Hagaar in Egypt. We all know how that worked out in Abraham’s family. And it...

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The Most Misunderstood Woman in the Bible | Kyria

I was pleasantly surprised to find that an article I wrote for the Kyria online magazine (Christianity Today) was among it's most popular articles. This was one I enjoyed writing, a sort of contrarian take on the typical depiction of Job's wife: Her name was never revealed and yet she may be the most infamous woman in the Bible. Augustine labeled her "the devils accomplice." Calvin called her "a diabolical fury."And the contemporary understanding of Jobs wife hasnt improved on Calvin or Augustine. Its difficult to find a book or sermon treatment of the life of Job that doesnt include the usual condemnations toward his wife. It has become a standard joke to pity Job, as if his wife was yet another cross God called this man to bear.If the Proverbs 31 woman represents a model of Christian virtue, the wife of Job occupies the role of least desirable, sharing space...

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