Blind Spots

Recently I sat down at lunch with a church leader. Stop me if you’ve heard this one. The elders (deacons for your Baptists) were having trouble agreeing on a vision for their church. The pastor was trying to lead them in one direction and  some elder says in so many words the most hard-headed sentence ever to leave the walls of a church business meeting: “We never did it that way before. Why can’t we … Continue reading

God in Your Own Image

Creating a god in your own image can have many temporal benefits. Such a deity would reflect your views and sanctify your behavior. He or she might even make your own behavior look better in comparison. The ancient Greek and Roman gods, who could be extremely nasty and selfish beings, are good examples of this benefit. The gods of other pagan cultures were no better. These various gods and the God Who revealed Himself in … Continue reading

The Feeding of the 5,000 Migrants

Earlier this week someone posted a meme of a church marquee with the message, “A Caravan of 5000 Migrants Confronted Jesus. So, He Fed Them.” This reminds us of the assertion made by many that Mary, Joseph, and Jesus were “homeless.” No, they were never homeless. They had to leave their home and travel to Bethlehem due to a government decree by Caesar Augustus that required everyone to be registered in their home town. They … Continue reading

A Cult Cocktail … Scripture with a Twist

Most false teachers use something our late friend and former Jehovah’s Witness, Harry Brooks, often called a cult cocktail … Scripture with a twist. It is a simple way to deceive potential recruits and to gather followers who have some respect for the Bible, but who don’t know it very well. Like talented magicians, false teachers, gifted in the art of word manipulation, employ a verbal sleight of hand that is often difficult for the … Continue reading

Truth-like Substance (Screwtape Letters Part 2)

In the first two letters, Lewis plants in Screwtape’s correspondence some philosophy and some ecclesiology.The philosophy is about the precariousness uses of argument. Screwtape dissuades Wormwood from using reason at all to corrupt his patient. “The trouble about argument is that it moves the whole struggle on to the Enemy’s own ground. He can argue too;” Oh yes he can. And so can his strongest saints. Witness all the times in the book of Acts, … Continue reading

Spiritual Disciplines and the Appearance of Wisdom

Writing to the Colossians in the First Century, the Apostle Paul warned about certain spiritual disciplines that had “the appearance of wisdom” (Colossians. 2:23) but, in fact, conflicted with sound biblical teaching and were very harmful to the Christian life. False teachers were in this case Gnostics, who crept into the church and claimed special “spiritual knowledge.” They gained influence in the church because what they were teaching felt “right” and “good” and oh so … Continue reading