Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making an appeal through us; we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God (2 Corinthians 5:20).
My wife, Sharon, and I have been traveling for the Thanksgiving holidays. We are very happy to be spending the holidays with our family. As we were driving along I-40 between Chattanooga and Nashville, we decided to stop at Wal-Mart. After shopping for a few minutes we walked up to the check-out clerk, a young lady who sheepishly asked me, “You’re not going to get mad if I wish you ‘Happy Holidays’ instead of ‘Merry Christmas,’ are you?”
Continue reading Does “Happy Holidays” make you angry?
Peer Accountability – Sanctification through Community
Paul charged the Ephesian church elders: “Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood” (Acts 20:28). His warning is not to guard the flock from the devil, but from toxic leaders within the church: “…savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves men will arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them” (Acts 20:29-30). Here we discern two aspects of guarding the flock. First, church leaders must exercise sober caution in the initial placement of leaders in ministry. Paul places the responsibility for dealing with toxic leadership squarely upon the bishops and elders of the church. He warns, “Do not lay hands upon anyone too hastily and thereby share responsibility for the sins of others; keep yourself free from sin” (1 Timothy 5:22). When the bishops of the church fail to guard against toxic leaders, they become complicit toxic leaders.
Continue reading Chrism, Charismata, and Character