Saturday, June 1, 2013

All Around the Web - June 1, 2013

John Piper - Christian Adoption: Disavowals and Affirmations |

1. Christian adoption disavows that any state or agency or family is ever entitled to other people’s children.
2. Christian adoption disavows that putting a child in a Christian home justifies taking a child away from his or her non-Christian home.
3. Christian adoption disavows that any coercion or deception or monetary enticement should ever be used to remove children from their birth family.
4. Christian adoption disavows that growing up Western and middle class is necessarily better than growing up non-western and poor.
5. Christian adoption disavows that living with two adoptive parents is necessarily better than living with one biological parent.
6. Christian adoption disavows that children should ever be viewed as commodities to be bought or sold.
7. Christian adoption disavows that adoption is always better than assisting a birth family to raise its children.
8. Christian adoption disavows that biological connectedness is insignificant or negligible in the life of the adoptive child or in the birth family.
9. Christian adoption disavows the romantic notion that the challenges of adoptive parenting are small or painless, and the na√Įve notion that the human flourishing of an adoptive child is guaranteed by sufficient parental love.
10. Christian adoption disavows the inference that the failure of some agencies and persons to act with integrity and wisdom incriminates the vast majority of Christian adoption agencies.

JD Greer - What Counts As Plagiarism in a Sermon? |

1. If I ever preach the gist of another person’s sermon, meaning that I used the lion’s share of their message’s organization, points, or applications, I give credit.

2. If I glean an interpretation of a passage from someone, but the organization of the points, application and presentation are my own, I generally do not feel the need to cite.

3. When I take a direct point or a line or the creative wording of a truth from someone, I feel like I should cite. I obey this rule usually.

4. When I give a list that someone else has come up with or offer some piece of cultural analysis, I feel like I should cite. Again, a list or an organizational scheme is a thought unit. The truths inside that structure may not be unique to that person, but the organization of the presentation of those points is.

5. If I hear a story told by someone else that reminds me of a story of your own, and I tell that story from my own life, I don’t think I need always to identify where I got the idea for that story from originally

Thom Rainer - 7 Steps to Teach Theology in the Local Church |
  1. Don’t assume that your church members don’t care about beliefs. Too many church leaders give up on teaching theology before they even try. “Nobody cares about theology any more,” they think. Not only does this thinking ultimately question the power of the Word, but it also denies reality. It is precisely because people do care about beliefs that they turn to places and people other than the church for their belief system. Where the church fails, somebody else fills the void.
  2. Realize that attending worship and small groups does not automatically lead to doctrinal fidelity. Here, I am NOT suggesting that preaching and Bible study are unimportant to teaching doctrine; indeed, good doctrinal training does not happen apart from preaching and teaching the Word. I am simply arguing that our church members don’t typically hear our teaching and automatically connect the dots to form a biblical theology. Teaching good theology must happen intentionally.
  3. Include basic theology in a required membership class. In some ways, the best time to teach the basics is when a person first follows Christ or first joins the church—when he or she is most focused on a Christian commitment. Capitalize on that enthusiasm by teaching early the inerrancy and authority of the Bible. Show why the exclusivity of Christ is non-negotiable. Talk about the necessity of the death of Christ. Build the theological foundation early, and build it well.
  4. Take advantage of doctrine studies. Churches don’t need to “reinvent the wheel” to teach theology. Case in point, Lifeway Christian Resources has developed The Gospel Project (a journey through the basics of biblical and systematic theology over a three-year period), The God Who Speaks (a study of the doctrine of revelation), and Read the Bible for Life (a 9-session study that equips individuals and churches to understand the Bible better). If we believe that theology matters, why not take advantage of already-prepared material and teach a current study? Plan extensively, promote well, and prioritize this type of study.
  5. Raise the bar for small group leaders who teach the Word. These leaders have a great opportunity—perhaps one of the best in the church—to influence lives through teaching small groups. Few other leaders have such a ready hearing. For that reason, we must hold group leaders accountable to holy living, sound doctrine, and good teaching. We should not be surprised when members view doctrine as boring after lackluster teachers have taught it. There is simply no excuse for allowing untrained, unfaithful, or boring teachers to drain the life out of Bible studies.
  6. Begin in the home. Teach parents biblical doctrine, and then help them teach their own children accordingly. Because Deuteronomy 6:7 and Ephesians 6:4 demand nothing less from believing parents, our churches should work in cooperation with them—not replace them—in teaching theology to the next generation. Provide good resources that teach basic truths at a child’s level without compromising scriptural teachings, but expect parents to do the teaching.
  7. Be willing to start with the few. Just as Jesus did, focus on the few rather than the many. For example, invite a few men to join you in studying theology one morning each week. Give them the Bible and a basic theology textbook, and challenge them to study the week’s lesson. If you prepare and teach well, you will likely be surprised at how interested the men are. Those men and their families will be stronger because they are learning the Word.

Trevin Wax - 9 Things You Should Know About Southern Baptists |

1. The Southern Baptist Convention was organized in 1845 and now includes more than 45,000 churches and 16,000,000 members, which makes it the largest Protestant denomination in North America.

2. The “Southern Baptist Convention” is shorthand for all the churches and individuals who identify as Southern Baptist. Technically, however, the Southern Baptist Convention exists for only two days a year, at the annual gathering. The rest of the year, eleven denominational entities carry out the instructions of the messengers to the Convention. Actions by the Convention are nonbinding on local churches because every church is considered autonomous.

3. An individual becomes a Southern Baptist by joining a Southern Baptist church. A church qualifies as Southern Baptist by contributing to the mission causes of the Convention.

4. Theologically, the Convention holds to a consensus statement (Baptist Faith and Message), but this confession of faith is not binding on any church or individual because every Southern Baptist church is autonomous. An individual church may choose to adopt the BF&M or may create their own statement. Faculty at SBC-owned seminaries and missionaries who apply to serve through the various SBC missionary agencies must affirm that their practices, doctrine, and preaching are consistent with the BF&M.

First Things - If Women Ran the World

Writing for The Atlantic in September of 2012, Hanna Rosin argued that the “hookup culture” so prevalent on college campuses and in the lives of young adults is “an engine of female progress—one being harnessed and driven by women themselves.” She wrote:

To put it crudely, feminist progress right now largely depends on the existence of the hookup culture. And to a surprising degree, it is women—not men—who are perpetuating the culture, especially in school, cannily manipulating it to make space for their success, always keeping their own ends in mind.

For college girls these days, an overly serious suitor fills the same role an accidental pregnancy did in the 19th century: a danger to be avoided at all costs, lest it get in the way of a promising future.

In other words, women have succeeded in becoming the men they hated.

HT: 22 Words
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