Monday, August 26, 2013

All Around the Web - August 26, 2013

HT: The Blaze

Thom Rainer - Seven Reasons Every Pastor Should Have a Blog
  1. Heavy doses of communication are vital in any relationship. This reality is powerfully true in the pastor/congregation relationship. Healthy churches have healthy pastor/members relationships. Healthy relationships are enhanced through ongoing communication. And the blog is an incredible way to communicate regularly. For this reason, I am very grateful for the Internet age.
  2. The pastor is able to present those most important emphases or visionary matters. The sermon just does not allow sufficient time to do all the communication a pastor needs to do. If done well, the blog can serve as an ongoing forum for communicating the most important matters in the church and to the church.
  3. No pastor can communicate with every member one-on-one. Church members can feel neglected if they do not get some type of communication from their pastor. Admittedly, a blog does not replace in person communication, but it certainly is better than no communication at all. I have heard from numerous church members who tell me that they really feel like they know their pastor through the blog.
  4. A pastor can do pastoral care via the blog. One of the most powerful blog posts I ever read was by a pastor who ministered to the entire church after the death of three teenagers in a car accident. While he spent hours of in-person pastoral care with the family of the teenagers, many others in the church were hurting. He reached out to them magnificently through his blog.
  5. A blog can be an outreach ministry. The first place a prospective guest visits is the church web site. That is why it’s mandatory for churches to have a quality site. If the church’s home page has a link to the pastor’s blog, many will read that article as well. Guests, both Christians and non-Christians, are more likely to visit your church if they feel like they know something about the pastor.
  6. The blog can allow for expansion on the sermon. Most pastors preach around 35 minutes a week. That is an incredibly short time to communicate God’s Word. The blog allows for an expansion and more detailed communication of the sermon.
  7. A blog is highly affordable. In fact, it can be free. There are no longer any financial barriers for any pastor who is serious about entering the blogosphere. It’s time for all of you to take that plunge!

Albert MohlerThe Wrath of God Was Satisfied: Substitutionary Atonement and the Conservative Resurgence in the Southern Baptist Convention

Current controversy over the nature of Christ’s atonement for sin points to a truth many younger evangelicals may not know, i.e., the substitutionary nature of Christ’s death on the cross was a major issue in the Conservative Resurgence that took place within the Southern Baptist Convention in the last quarter of the twentieth century.

The issue of biblical inerrancy stood at the forefront of Southern Baptist debates during those years of conflict and controversy, but other issues drew major concern. Moderates and conservatives in the Southern Baptist Convention were divided over controversial issues, including abortion rights, the exclusivity of the Gospel, and the nature of the atonement. As might be expected, most of these debates followed the same or very similar lines of division. As in the Reformation of the sixteenth century, to be divided over the formal principle of the authority of the Bible was, inevitably, to be divided over the material principles of doctrine as well.

In its earliest phase, modern theological liberalism developed open antipathy to the substitutionary nature of the atonement. Theologians such as Friedrich Schleiermacher, the father of theological liberalism, rejected the claim that the death of Christ is substitutionary or vicarious. Christ did not die in the place of sinners, bearing the wrath of a righteous God, Schleiermacher insisted. Instead, Christ’s death and resurrection demonstrated God’s love so that human beings might rightly love him. Albrecht Ritschl proposed a similar form of the moral influence theory of the atonement—Christ died as a revelation of the depth of God’s love toward sinners.

Fox News - California Gov. Brown signs transgender-student bill

California Gov. Jerry Brown signed a controversial bill into law Monday afternoon allowing the state’s transgender public school students to choose which bathrooms they use and whether they participate in boy or girl sports.

The law would cover the state’s 6.2 million elementary and high school kids in public schools.
Supporters say the law will help cut down on bullying against transgender students, The families of transgender students have been waging local battles with school districts around the country over what restrooms and locker rooms their children can use.

"Now, every transgender student in California will be able to get up in the morning knowing that when they go to school as their authentic self they will have the same fair chance at success as their classmates,” Masen Davis, Executive Director of Transgender Law Center said.

While California is the first state to pass a law of this magnitude, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Washington and Colorado have all adopted policies designed to protect transgendered pupils.
Not everyone is on board.

Eric Metaxas - Staring Down the Well |

Aslan is in august company. In his book, “Reasonable Faith,” William Lane Craig of Biola surveyed the various attempts to find the “historical Jesus.” There was “[David] Strauss’s Hegelian Jesus, [Ernest] Renan’s sentimental Jesus, [Bruno] Bauer’s non-existent Jesus, [Albrecht] Ritschl’s liberal Jesus, and so forth.”

As Craig put it, “apparently unaware of the personal element they all brought to their research, each writer reconstructed a historical Jesus after his own image . . . each one looked down the long well of history and saw his own face reflected at the bottom.”

The same is true of Aslan. For Aslan, Loconte says, events like the “Arab Spring” are part of “an unequivocal march towards freedom.”

Thus it should come as no surprise that when Aslan looks down the long well of history he sees “Jesus the Zealot for Political Liberation.” It doesn’t matter to Aslan that the evidence for this interpretation is virtually non-existent.

Nor does Aslan account for Jesus’ extraordinary influence throughout history. There was no shortage of revolutionaries in first-century Palestine. Like Jesus, they died at the hands of the Romans. Unlike Jesus, that was the end of the story for them.

John Stonestreet - Define the Relationship 

Bradford Wilcox of the National Marriage Project recently wrote in The Atlantic about a study that concluded when couples move in together, women have different expectations than their male partners.

The majority of cohabitating men said they weren’t “completely committed” to their relationship’s future, compared to just 26 percent of women. When asked whether they were “almost certain” about their relationship’s future, 52% of men said no and 39% of women said yes.
When these same questions were asked of married couples, the disparity vanished—both spouses were almost equally committed.

Sounds like somebody is getting a raw deal. But that’s exactly what cohabitation is for women. It’s a way for men to risk very little and get exactly what they want without making any commitment. And other stats have reveal that cohabitation is one of the best ways to ensure a failed marriage.

For the most part, this is a good discussion between Senator Rand Paul (one of my senators) and John Oliver of the Daily Show on the issue of Obamacare and free market among other issues.

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