For years I have trained others to be “theologically driven and pragmatically informed.” I was seeking to develop disciples who who be able to fight the bent of much of the pop-church culture of being “pragmatically driven and only slightly theologically salted.”
Training my students at the seminary and disciples in the church was a reminder to me to develop my own views of ministry from the Scripture out rather than from culture or tradition. It still is.
That’s part of what I hope happens for you as you come back and read the weekend links I post here. The Church needs theology. I’m going to try to be more focused on three broad categories: Theology, Practice, Pop-Culture. My hope is that you will be both encouraged and challenged by the offerings here.
On a personal front: I crossed the 200 mile mark for the Spring on my 40 pound department store bike. One mile today was my fastest this year at 16.2 miles per hour. Building strength and hoping to do a 60K in June and a 60 mile trip in July or August. Think I’m going to need a faster bike though. Trying to keep both body and mind sharp as I enter my 7th decade. Never thought I would live this long.
What is Your Capacity for Mystery? —John Piper (Twelve minute video that is powerful in its simplicity and profound in its implications.)
A “Solution” to Same-Sex Marriage that Solves Very Little (Interesting article on what is happening down in Mississippi. This gets the state out of marriage licensing but does nothing to protect marriage as something that happens between heterosexual couples only.)
Was the Holy Spirit Not on Earth Before Pentecost? —Jared Wilson (A great illustration about what happened at Pentecost and what was made possible because of Pentecost.)
Thinking Theologically about Memorial Day —Kevin DeYoung (These issues are not just memorial day issues but Veterans Day, Labor Day and issues like having flags in sanctuaries. Some good thoughts. “Allegiance to God and allegiance to your country are not inherently incompatible” [but they could be].
Journaling in Your Bible —CrossWay Books (I like a Bible with wide margins. I want to write my observations, prayers, questions, puzzles, quandaries, historical background notes and have them in front of me as I work my way through a book to help me interpret it. These two options from CrossWay Books are a good alternative for you if you are like me. The New Inductive Study Bible [NASB Update] is also good and includes book introductions to books and other helps for study.)
Seven Reasons I Wrote a Book on Prayer —Edmond Sanganyado (I have preordered this book purely on the motives of the writer and my own crying need to learn how to pray better.)
Encouraging Christians in Pakistan (A bold business man builds a 140 foot cross in downtown Karachi.)
Where You Live Changes What You See When You Read the Bible —Trevan Wax (I think Trevan overstates the particular case and understates the value of listening to alternatives, but it is worth noting and being careful about your biases when you study the word of God. I make a similar point in the essay I wrote for A HEART FOR THE COMMUNITY (John Fuder and John Costellanos, editors.)
Pop-Culture and Politics
A Modest Proposal on School Pension Crisis from a Former Teacher (Some interesting ideas here on fair pension reform for school teachers in Illinois.)
Seth Godin and the Tribes We Lead —TED talk (Helping leaders to think conceptually about how to connect to tribes of people, people who live for the things you live and think about all the time.)