Proclaiming the Kingdom

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Isaiah—Celebrating the Servant Savior

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Isaiah rebukes Israel’s rejection of God’s kingship while sounding forth the everlasting promise of God’s universal kingdom that will come through the peace-establishing, justice-working Servant king, who will reign over transformed ethnic Israelites and Gentiles in the new creation. “And the haughtiness of man shall be humbled,” says Isaiah, “and the lofty pride of men shall be brought low, and the LORD alone will be exalted in that day” (Isa 2:17). God reigns not through proud men but ultimately through this Servant, who moves through tribulation unto triumph. This is Isaiah’s vision for hope.

In the following series of lectures, Dr. Jason DeRouchie teaches through a number of the high Messianic points in one of the Old Testament’s greatest prophetic books (he will be adding to this weekly). Come celebrate the Servant Savior in Isaiah’s proclamation of good news!
read more…

If Your Right Hand Causes You to Sin

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Ten Biblical Reflections on Masturbation

Sexual intimacy within marriage is a beautiful gift from God. It’s an outlet for play and passion, and it nurtures closeness with your spouse, supplying a unique context for giving and receiving love. But as with all God’s good gifts (1 Timothy 4:4), the devil seeks “to steal and kill and destroy” (John 10:10). His perversions are deeply grieving, and the scars can be lasting.

What does God say about masturbation? Here are ten reasons to resist the temptation with all your might.

  1. Raising up godly offspring is a primary way to make disciples. Masturbation belittles God’s passion for global praise.
  2. God purposed that all righteous forms of sexual expression be for the marriage bed. Masturbation removes sexual expression from its only God-intended context.
  3. Preserving sexual expression for the marriage bed nurtures intimacy and a heart of service for one’s spouse. Masturbation undermines both.
  4. Sexual intimacy between a husband and wife points to the love between Christ and his church. Those who substitute masturbation for marital intimacy undervalue God’s glory.
  5. Masturbation outside the marriage bed does not glorify God because evil desire always fuels it.
  6. Jesus urged his followers to guard themselves from lustful masturbation, and Paul called Christians to control their sexual parts in holiness and honor.
  7. Paul declares that the answer to sexual desire is either the marriage bed or self-control, not masturbation.
  8. Masturbation outside the marriage bed witnesses a lack of self-control and is therefore sin.
  9. Forsaking the sin of masturbating can nurture greater God-dependence.
  10. One’s thoughts and actions display what one treasures. It’s impossible to say, “Follow me in masturbation as I follow Christ.”

To read the entire post, follow this link. //PDF//

Ecclesiastes—Finding Joy Amidst Life’s Enigmas

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TITLE: Finding Joy Amidst Life’s Enigmas: A Sermon on Ecclesiastes 11:7–12:1
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(Presented at “Indulge: Spiritual Appetites Need No Bounds,” A Seminar on the Future of Christian Hedonism, Bethlehem College & Seminary, 7–8 October 2016)

Vanity of vanities, says the Preacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity! (Ecclesiastes 1:2)

If ever you have read the questions, confessions, and exhortations in Ecclesiastes, you likely would echo Peter regarding Paul’s letters that “there are some things in them that are hard to understand” (2 Peter 3:16). I have felt this way many times, but in this book I have also found amazing fuel for stoking fires of joy in my soul that have carried me through seasons of pleasure and deep pain. I believe the Preacher has a message that is very practical regarding our pursuit of pleasures in God. (To continue reading or to listen/watch the rest of this sermon, please click here.) 

Five Ways to Help Our Kids After the Election

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We have just witnessed an unprecedented (and unpresidential) presidential election. How are our kids — five-year-olds, ten-year-olds, fifteen-year-olds — processing what has just happened? What are they seeing, thinking, and hearing as they watch the news and talk with their friends?

I am a father of six, with ages ranging from seven to seventeen (three boys and three girls, three black and three white). I am also a husband and a believer in King Jesus. I went to the polls yesterday in grief. Yet my hope is in God (Psalm 42:5, 11).

For more, go here.

Leader and Savior

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A Prayer: LEADER AND SAVIOR (Acts 5:31)

God exalted him at his right hand as Leader and Savior. (Acts 5:31)

Highly exalted are you, O Lord,
Seated enthroned at your Father’s side.
Adorned with power, crown, and sword,
Our hope rests in you––Leader and Guide. read more…

The Radical Book for Kids

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A new book for kids:

I am excited about this new book that releases today: Thornton, Champ. The Radical Book for Kids: Exploring the Roots and Shoots of FaithGreensboro, NC: New Growth, 2016. 272 pp. You can download a sample here

Here is my endorsement:

Super heroes, beasts, enemies, a (not so) secret mission, the greatest love story! This book will shape for youth a big-God worldview and nurture Christ-exalting living. It’s filled with fascinating nuggets, memorable bites, rich theology, clear wisdom, and fun ideas. The pictures and topics are varied and engaging and will both draw your child into God’s world and Word and propel him or her toward maturity, responsibility, and Godliness.

read more…

Why Must I Obey?

A photo by Samantha Sophia. unsplash.com/photos/NaWKMlp3tVs

TITLE: Why Must I Obey?

Have you ever heard a child ask, “Why do I have to obey?” As a father of six kids (ages seven to seventeen), I have perceived this question often in the hearts of my children. I want not only to shape their actions but also to help them recognize the “why” of a Christian ethic. As an Old Testament professor, I wondered how Jesus’ Bible would answer this query, and I find an answer in Deuteronomy. Moses expects that parents who love God (Deut. 6:4–5) and who are calling their children to do so as well (v. 7) will get this kind of question (v. 20). In Deuteronomy 6:20–25, he clarifies for parents how to reply. (To continue reading click here.)

Train Up a Child in the Way He Should Go

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TITLE: Train Up a Child in the Way He Should Go: Reflections on Proverbs 22:6

I have six kids, ages seven to seventeen, and I believe that few callings are as high as shaping them to see and savor the beauties of Christ and to love the nations as he does. In my years of pastoral ministry and parenting, I have regularly encountered confusion regarding the meaning of a well-known verse, “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it” (Proverbs 22:6). Let me offer some reflections on it, considering its lasting significance for the church. (To continue reading click here.) 

The Story of God

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TITLE: The Story of God: How Scripture Fits Together and Points to Christ

SUMMARY: The Bible is precious—all of it, for in it we find detailed the grand story of God pursuing sinners through the revelation of his Son. History is His Story. In this eight part series, Jason DeRouchie walks through the story of the Bible showing how all Scripture fits together and points to Christ. Parts 1–6 overview K.I.N.G.D.O.M., Jason’s acronym for remembering the major movements of Scripture. Parts 7–8 then supply a guide for Christian’s appropriating OT law.  read more…