Here are two very important questions to consider when we think of the faith journey; “What triggers a decision to be born again, a decision of the non-yet-Christian, or is it God’s decision?”
The second question is even more controversial, “Is belief in Jesus enough to be born again?”
The Spiritual Journey
It’s been my observation that the spiritual journey generally has these elements or stages, although they may not necessarily happen in this order. (more…)
How does a Calvinist evangelize?
That was the question asked of me in a Q and A session after I spoke at a church a few weeks ago. My answer was one I’ve given many times before. “Evangelism for a Calvinist is like being a good real estate agent – our only obligation is to list and show. We don’t have to close!”
By that I mean my only obligation and privilege is to introduce people to Jesus and show them what it means to live like Jesus and for Jesus. I don’t have to “get them saved”. That’s the Holy Spirit’s responsibility. Believing that takes all the pressure off. To illustrate, I went on to tell this story. (more…)
Based on how you live your life, what you’re passionate about, how you care for others and spend your discretionary time and money, would your spouse, your children, or your closest friends characterize you as a Christian – or a serious follower of Jesus?
Remember the cartoons on TV when you were a kid, when the bad guys were being chased by the police? They always seemed to have a convenient bag of nails to throw out of their car, in hopes of flattening their pursuers’ tires.
Whenever I ask the question which I posed at the beginning of this blog, of someone who knows intuitively they are not a serious follower of Jesus, that’s the feeling I get. They often want me to define, explain and debate with them. I think they sense God getting close – ready to catch them, and transform them into someone they’re not sure they really want to be. Out come the theological tacks.
I know their fear. For the first three decades of my life, I thought I had God right where I wanted him. He was close enough to be a comfort, but distant enough as to not be terribly inconvenient. (more…)
Christian leaders and pastors have been speaking out lately against a new, fast growing genre’ of novels which have been labeled, “mommy porn”. The most popular title is 50 Shades of Gray. The three book series has sold more than 65,000,000 copies! It’s filth! (At least, that’s what I’m told by people I respect.)
However the greatest danger to the church and you and I personally, isn’t porn or sex – it’s beige, religious Christianity. Jesus himself warns us of this sin by way of his warnings to the church at Laodicea, when he said, “So because you are lukewarm – neither hot nor cold – I am about to spit you out of my mouth.” Rev. 3:16
Nobody wakes up one morning and makes the decision to be a lukewarm Christian.
“So, I have a theory. I think we Christians who were once on fire for God often slowly and unconsciously drift toward religious activities, even good ones because they’re relatively convenient and culturally acceptable forms of obedience. It’s a “faith” we can schedule into our busy lives.
It’s a form of spirituality that we can measure ourselves and others by. It’s familiar and predictable and it still leaves 95% of our waking hours just for ourselves.” (more…)