Archive for April, 2006

T4G “Rap” Up

In the future I will leave blogging conferences to the experts because I neither found the time or the energy to carry-out such a task. Thankfully you can see a wonderful recap of each session here and plenty of photos here. Highlights for me were Lig Duncan’s message on “Preaching the Old Testament” which was simply the best I have ever heard on the subject by a mile (he can rap too, see picture). I got to hang-out and worship with Dr. Purgatorio who is such a cool guy and very encouraging to be around. I briefly met Dr. Fide-O Robertson as well and managed to get away before anyone saw me conspiring with him. I caught-up with old friends and some new ones. I will remember this conference for a long time to come. I began the week preaching a very forgettable sermon that left me ministerialy depressed but ended the week greatly encouraged and ready to pursue, renew, and reshape my life as a minister of the wondrous Gospel.

T4G Day One

The session kicked off tonight in grand fashion and was meaningful, deliberate, convicting, and worshipful (and any other positive adjectives you might think of). Mark Dever preached the opening session on “The Pastor’’s understanding of his own role.”” His text was from 1 Corinthians 4 and his points were:

“Three Marks of a Real Minister”
1.Cross-centered message
2.Cross-centered life
3.Cross-centered followers

I needed to hear this sermon in a big way and the Lord has certainly renewed some dormant thoughts, attitudes, and convictions that have gathered dust in my life. All praise to Christ.

The conference is a sea of church leaders from wall to wall. The fellowship is very close…literally. I have enjoyed seeing old friends from seminary and blog celebrities. For a real blog recap see Tim Challies here.

If you see me please introduce yourself, I would love to connect with as many of you as possible. Now here are some candids from the day:
Eric Bancroft who is in competition with C. J. Mahaney for slickest scalp (what’s the deal with shaved heads and Sovereign Grace Ministries anyway?).

Marc “Purgatorio” Heinrich

Allen “Country boy will survive” Cagle

Ben Holland chatting with new friend Zach.

“A Mighty Fortress is Our Tavern”?????

My wife will tell you that I have a special skill that is totally useless. I can take almost any popular tune and rewrite the lyrics in almost a split second. I especially love to take cherished love ballads and recast them into the farcical drivel that they truly deserve. Somewhat related is the common misnomer that many of the great hymns were actually pub songs from the old country rewritten with a more biblical lyric. Someone even told me once (with a straight face) that “A Mighty Fortress is Our God” was originally a bar tune. The wife and I once saw the lapsed Lutheran, Garrison Keilor, at the Hollywood Bowl where we sang the old song in German right after he repeated the same historical faux paux. Thankfully Gene Edward Veith sets the historical record straight,

“For the record, Luther did not take “bar tunes” and put biblical words to them. That legend comes from a comical misunderstanding. Someone apparently heard a music historian referring to Luther’s use of the “bar form,” which refers to a stanza structure, not to what drunks sing in a tavern. Luther did borrow and adapt tunes from earlier hymns, medieval chants, and contemporary composers, but a good number of his melodies were his own original compositions.”

See the full article here.

On the road with T4G

Some of us will be here all week soaking up sermons, ministry insight and fellowship at the T4G Conference. I will be blogging the conference at Expository Thoughts. Be sure to check out Challies who will also be blogging the conference. You can also find the official blog of the conference here. If you’re going drop us a line.

An elder’s children: believing or faithful?

Dr. Andreas Kostenberger has posted an article on the thorny issue of Titus 1:6 “children who believe” (NASB, ESV, NIV, NLT) or “faithful children” (NKJV). His article is from his forthcoming commentary on 1-2 Timothy, Titus in the new revised edition of The Expositor’s Bible Commentary. For a similar take see Dr. Bill Barrick’s helpful insight on Titus 1:6 here.

For a differnet take on this issue see the note on Titus 1:6 in The MacArthur Study Bible or his commentary on the same.

Shepherd’s Conf. Resources

Notes from the recent Shepherd’s Conference are now on the web here. Notes from earlier years can be found here.

HT: Nathan Busenitz

The Pastor As Theologian

Al Mohler has written, “Every pastor is called to be a theologian. This may come as a surprise to some pastors, who see theology as an academic discipline taken during seminary rather than as an ongoing and central part of the pastoral calling. Nevertheless, the health of the church depends upon its pastors functioning as faithful theologians–teaching, preaching, defending, and applying the great doctrines of the faith.”

See the full article here.

Does God need a PR man?

I found this article from the New York Times Magazine interesting for the fact that it sees something unusal about God needing a public relations person. The article is about PR agent Larry Ross but the author notices something about Rick Warren (one of Ross’s clients) that many evangelicals fail to grasp:

“Warren’s book “The Purpose-Driven Life” has sold more than 25 million copies, making it the best-selling hardcover book of nonfiction ever published in the United States, and some say Saddleback has more in common with Google or Starbucks, at least in scope, than the typical church. Warren has a public and a brand to manage.”

As for Ross the article asks the obvious question:

“The Kingdom of God itself is a client of sorts. Publicity, marketing and branding are his ministry. So the real question becomes, Why does God need someone to sell him?”

New preaching articles from IX Marks

Of note for expositors in the new IX Marks newsletter:

Dever, McKnight, the Atonement and a question few are asking

Long story short: Mark Dever has posted an excellent article on the atonement which has Scot McKight in a huff. Others like Phil Johnson have caught-on to McKnight’s obvious hypocrisy but the whole thing presents a question that few are asking: Would McKnight have these problems with Dever’s explanation and defense of penal substitution if he (McKnight) did not hold to his various source critical views of the Gospels? I do think it matters and the two are related. Dever notes this in his article and Denny Burk asks a similar question in the comment thread of McKnight’s post. Burk questions, “I would be interested to hear you respond to Dever’s suggestion that you have rejected “Mark’s theologizing” of Jesus’s words in Mark 10:45.” So would I Denny because there is a source critical approach to the text of the Gospels that appears to be driving McKnight’s theology. Until such an issue is dealt with this argument will continue to be played by different sets of rules and on different playing fields.

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