Monday, July 27, 2009

Free Books

You can sign up to win over $80 in free books this week at Passion for Preaching. Check out their Christmas in July book giveaway that includes two great books and a $50 gift certificate from WTSBOOKS.

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Thursday, July 16, 2009

Big Truths for Young Hearts

I've posted a book review for Big Truths for Young Hearts at Passion for Preaching. I hope that you will check it out, especially if you are a parent.

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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Infidelity, Grace, and A Christian Response

In light of Mark Sanford's recent confession of infidelity, I admit that my first reaction was very negative. I continue to be saddened by the situation and feel incredible sorrow for the entire Sanford family (as well as the woman involved), however, I am reminded that but for grace, there go I as well. Before we cast stones, let us remember that only God's grace protects us from making sinful blunders, and as soon as we grow confident in our own abilities to resist sin, we will become susceptible to that sin in our own lives.

I am reminded of the need also for accountability. I doubt that Mark Sanford shared with his wife and closest friends that he was tempted into this sin before it ever happened. Instead, this was a "secret" affair. The old adage goes, secrets don't make friends and friends don't make secrets. The only secret you should keep from your spouse should involve cake, candles, and gifts. Other secrets are harmful and potentially deadly to your marriage.

Lastly, I am humbled by the forgiving spirit of his wife. What an example to the world of what forgiveness looks like. I believe that Mark Sanford should honor his wife's commitment to forgiveness by resigning from his position and devoting his time to reconciling with his wife and family. He should also honor the integrity of his position and the people of his state by stepping down.

Be in prayer for the Sanford family and for all families that they could and would resist the temptation to sin and stray.

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Friday, June 12, 2009

Sermon Videos

If you haven't checked out our new website at, you should. It's still got some bugs to be worked out, but it is coming along. On our new site, you can see sermon videos. Below I've pasted the sermon from May 31st, and if all goes well, I'll get the video from this past Sunday up today.

May 31st, 2009 Sermon from Malvern Hill Baptist Church on Vimeo.

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Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Beauty of Silence

In a new article by Albert Mohler he examines the inherit value of silence to human culture, and especially to children.  Here is my favorite excerpt, which he quotes from Susan Hill:

If children do not learn to focus and concentrate in a pool of quietness, their minds become fragmented and their temperaments irritable, their ability to absorb knowledge and sift it, grade it and evaluate it do not develop fully. Reading a book quietly, watching a raindrop slide slowly down a windowpane or a ladybird crawl up a leaf, trying to hear the sound of a cat breathing when it is asleep, asking strange questions, such as, "Where do all the colors go at night?" and speculating about the possible answers — all of these are best done in silence where the imagination can flourish and the intricate minutiae of the world around us can be examined with the greatest concentration.

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Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Worshiping God Because of His Creation

Francis Chan's book, Crazy Love is one that I would heartily recommend to you.  Today, I'm going to type a selection from his book that inspired me to worship God.  I hope and trust that it will do the same for you.
Did you know that a caterpillar has 228 separate and distinct muscles in its head?  That's quite a few, for a bug.  The average elm tree has approximately 6 million leaves on it.  And your own heart generates enough pressure as it pumps blood throughout your body that it could squirt blood up to thirty feet.  (I've never tried this, and don't recommend it.)

Have you ever thought about how diverse and creative God is?  He didn't have to make hundreds of different kinds of bananas, but he did.  He didn't have to put 3,000 species of trees within one square mile in the Amazon jungle, but he did.  God didn't have to create so many kinds of laughter.  Think about the different sounds of your friends' laughs--wheezes, snorts, silent, loud, obnoxious.

How about the way plants defy gravity by drawing water upward from the ground into their stems and veins?  Or did you know that spiders produce three kinds of silk?  WHen they build their webs, they create sixty feet of silk in one hour, simultaneously producing special oil on their feet that prevents them from sticking to their own web.  (Most of us hate spiders, but sixty feet an hour deserves some respect!)  Coral plants are so sensitive that they can die if the water temperature varies by even one or two degrees.  

Did you know that when you get goose bumps, the hair in your follicles is actually helping you stay warmer by trapping body heat?  Or what about the simple fact that plants take in carbon dioxide (which is harmful to us) and produce oxygen (which we need to survive)?  Im' sure you knew that, but have you ever marveled at it?  And these same poison-swallowing, life-giving plants came from tiny seeds that were placed in the dirt.  Some were watered, some weren't; but after a few days they poked through the soil and out into the warm sunlight.

Whatever God's reasons for such diversity, creativity, and sophistication in the universe, on earth, and in our own bodies, the point of it all is His glory.  Gods art speaks of Himself, reflecting who He is and what He is like.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Bad Language in the Pulpit

I encourage you to click over to PassionforPreaching and check out my latest article there titled, Exposition and Explicatives that deals with the issue of bad language in the pulpit. Ephesians 5:4 says "Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving."
Needless to say, I believe that this imperative applies to pastors and preachers as well as those who sit in chairs and pews. After all, teachers will be judged more harshly than those who do not teach (James 3:1).

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