A Sidekick's Blog

Those Dastardly Young People Leaving Church

May 30, 2015
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Read this one first, then it’s follow up at https://hipandthigh.wordpress.com/2015/05/26/the-real-reasons-why-youth-are-leaving-church/

It’s not what you think, I promise.

hipandthigh

hipsterThe last few years have seen a crush of hand-wringing, panicked stricken articles and books bemoaning how today’s youth are abandoning traditional churches and Christianity altogether once they reach college age.

The authors of these garment rending laments are often self-appointed pop cultural analysts who believe they are on the front lines of the modern culture war assailing Christians everywhere. They are anyone from parachurch apologists to popular youth personalities, and they are sounding the alarm about the exodus of young people from Christianity who were raised in loving Christian homes whose parents took them to church regularly, taught them the Bible, and in many cases enrolled them in Christian schools or homeschooled them.

Once they leave home for the first time, those fresh young people are genuinely exposed to the “real world” and their naivete is dashed up against the rocks of secularism. They come to recognize the folly of religious…

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What Walter Chantry Really Said in 1966

May 18, 2015
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Even as the Reformation is making inroads back into the Southern Baptist Convention, this is still as relevant today as it ever was. As long as we have SBC ministers in good standing who cannot even articulate the true gospel of Christ, the need for the rest of us to associate for the greater good remains.


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6 Things Christians Should Stop Saying

May 15, 2015
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A plea against Christian triteness…

Gospel Relevance

We all have that one friend that consistently says cheesy Christians clichés. I think most of us would agree that this is typically, well, very annoying. This is intensified when the sayings aren’t biblical. The motive behind saying them are usually noble, but they often simply aren’t true or helpful.

So, what are some of them?

Stop Saying

Below are six things that Christians should stop saying:

1) Let Go and let God.  This phrase is typically used when in a trial. In a sense, I adore the “letting go” part if that means resting in God’s sovereignty, but when facing trials and tribulations, there are simply a lot of things that we can actually do. We can pray, study Scripture, confess sin, repent of sin, seek help from wise counsel, weep, mediate on Scripture, serve others, etc. “Letting go” has too much of a passive feel to it; it denotes that we…

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Simplify!

May 5, 2015
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I have got to un-complicate my stressed-out life before I work myself into a heart attack or something. Maybe I’m getting too old for all these new beginnings, I dunno.

  • I’m training for a new career as an insurance agent and it’s high-pressure, high-stress, very complicated stuff. I have some prospects, but nothing certain.
  • I quit my lousy-paying job to do this, so I was already behind the eight ball when I started.
  • I have final exams at college this week, and I’m not doing well in two of my classes.
  • I’ve decided to drop out of college for now until I figure out what I’m doing there. Teaching as a second career is off the table.
  • I need a paycheck RIGHT NOW. I’m that close to the edge of oblivion.
  • I owe back taxes and can’t pay them.
  • My shoulder hurts a lot. It might keep from getting a decent-paying job.
  • My daughter is moving half a world away soon, to a third-world country.

Is that enough stress yet?

There’s always Calgon, but with my luck I’m probably allergic to it.

I covet your prayers, dear readers.


It’s All About Me, Right?

May 4, 2015
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Let’s say I’m on a boat on the ocean that was struck in a storm and sank, and I found myself floating on a raft for a couple of days awaiting rescue. On the horizon I see a ship! It looks like it’s getting closer and closer, but then it looks like it’s just going to keep right going past me. Suddenly it turns toward me and I’m rescued!

Am I grateful to the captain of that ship? Oh, yes!

But suppose I assume that the ship is out there only to rescue me. That it has no other reason for being out in the middle of the ocean. Let’s say that I suppose it’s primary mission is saving me. I might tend to think less of her captain even if I am rescued. “What the heck took you so long?”

If I was captain of that ship that had rescued the presumptive, arrogant version of me, I’d order the crew, “See to his medical needs, some dry clothes, a hot meal, then throw his sorry butt in the brig.”

Y’know what? It’s little wonder that so many of those that have been picked up from the Sea of Dead Works are languishing in the brig, so to speak. It’s that arrogant presumption that God’s sole purpose for being is to rescue me, care for me, provide for me, love me, satisfy me, and fulfill me that lands me in the brig – safe, but unhappy; resentful instead of eternally grateful; ashamed instead of humbled; envious instead of content.

When we present the offer of salvation to sinners, we must not do it in a way that leads those who accept it to wind up in the brig with other bewildered souls. It’s not all about saving sinners, it’s all about the glory of God! His ship does not sail the ocean exclusively on a mission to rescue unworthy stowaways. We are sinners, deserving only death and hell. When He rescues one of us, He does so for the glory of His mercy towards the unrighteous, unlovely, filthy, rotten, and undeserving. Those who end up in hell do not do so because He failed to reach them in time. They end up in hell because it is what they deserve, as do I. Even in hell, they remain for the glory of God. They bear testimony to the glory of His holiness, purity, and justice.

The gospel begins and ends with the glory of God, not the well-being and comfort of His enemies! It is good news for the wretched, evil, and undeserving. But it’s purpose is the glory of God, from eternity past to forever beyond time itself.

Perhaps fewer people would respond to the gospel of God’s glory, but at least of that number, fewer will end up in the brig for their arrogance and presumption.

Sorry sinners, it’s not all about you and me. It’s about Almighty, thrice-holy, all-sovereign God. We exist for His glory, whether we are rescued or left adrift to die.

Soli Deo Gloria!


Morality and Education

May 4, 2015
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A further explanation of one of the main reasons I decided to drop out of college for now.

CredoCovenant

In the previous blog, I addressed the second major issue regarding American college education – the promotion and fostering of the autonomous self. Although most social and academic commentators tend to believe that the entitlement mentality of the current generation of students is a relatively recent phenomenon, I believe that this is the fruit of a deeper problem that extends back multiple generations. Over the span of less than 60 years, the mission of college education has dramatically changed. We have abandoned the view that education is a virtuous endeavor (which seeks to train and disciple the mind) and have replaced it with a pragmatic view of education that primarily trains us for future jobs.

Moreover, the morality of education has also taken a rather dramatic shift and this shift has been consistent with the promotion of the autonomous self. Coupled with this moral change, I want to address…

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Imagine

May 1, 2015
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Read the original post! Great stuff. http://www.alta-forma.com/tgc-just-social-or-social-justice/


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