For the past few weeks, I have been preaching at Good Hope Baptist Church in Iva, SC, as they begin searching for a new pastor. Truly, it is a unique church: rural, agrarian, historic—and contemporary. Unlike any congregation I’ve ever been part of, this one meets in a metal, multi-purpose building, worships with a praise band (a really good one, … Read More
Do churches serve the same function as the Plastic Surgery Center? Do churches focus primarily on enhancing external appearances?
(This week’s blog postings are adapted from the theme address, “Preaching Under Pressure,” presented at the EK Bailey International Conference on Expository Preaching in July.) The church is struggling because the numbers are declining, the people are demanding, and the leaders are disillusioned. Pastors and church leaders are frustrated by the pressure of declining numbers compounded by the increased demands … Read More
(This week’s blog postings are adapted from the theme address, “Preaching Under Pressure,” presented at the EK Bailey International Conference on Expository Preaching in July.) demands Declining numbers are only one factor in the church’s struggle. The church is also struggling because the people are demanding. We live in a consumer-driven culture, where we want what we want when … Read More
(This week’s blog postings are adapted from the theme address, “Preaching Under Pressure,” presented at the EK Bailey International Conference on Expository Preaching in July.) struggling Despite the myths we may hear, there has never been a “golden age” for churches in America. There have been times when the church has been stronger and other times when it was under … Read More
Preaching under pressure is not new, and it is not unique to you and your church.
I enjoyed being a pastor. I counted it a privilege of the highest honor to shepherd the flock of God. I loved the congregation with blood, sweat, and tears. I felt–and treasured–the eternal weight of the pastoral task. Each morning I awoke to an inaudible but ever clear trumpet call as I reengaged the battle for souls. Nothing matches the … Read More
There’s been lots of discussion in the evangelical blogosphere relating to Rob Bell’s new book, Love Wins. Early promotion for the book gave the impression that Bell is a universalist, but his defenders insisted we should wait until the book comes out before passing judgement. Well, the book is now out, and it looks like the early critics were pretty … Read More
The practice is ingrained so deeply in the Christian that perhaps we never question it, but we should: why do we sing at church? What does music have to do with worship? In his book, The Air I Breathe, Louie Giglio writes, “I think that all music—not just Christian music but all music—is worship music, because every song is amplifying … Read More