All tagged Sola Gratia

Sola: Revisiting the Substructures of the Reformation

One of my favorite eras of church history is undoubtedly that of the Reformation. I am so intrigued by the events that led up to that fateful day when Luther ignited the fire that would soon sweep across all of Europe. Though many historians much smarter than I would be quick to correct that notion, citing several heralds of Reformational doctrine long before Luther’s influence came to the fore.

The Faithful Saying of Sound Doctrine: A Sermon from 1 Timothy 1

In 1 Timothy 1, after alluding to what “sound doctrine” is not, Paul moves on to expound what “sound doctrine” is. And in contrast to the fraudulent and counterfeit doctrine being proclaimed by these false teachers, “sound doctrine” is chiefly concerned with sinners. Paul knew this deeply because his life is a living testimony to the “sound doctrine” of God.

Sour Grapes & Stale Crackers

I’m a lifelong Baptist and I’ve always been in church. Both my grandfathers served as pastors at various points in their lives, and my dad still ministers at a Baptist church in upstate South Carolina. Consequently, my understanding of the faith and practice of Christianity didn’t come with much in the way of liturgy. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing or something of which I’m resentful — it’s just a fact.

Going Spelunking: The Cavernous Grace of the Gospel

The opening verses of Ephesians 2 are among the most significant in all the pages of Scripture. In a mere ten verses, the apostle Paul upends nearly every presupposed notion about religion, the church, and the believer’s life in Christ. In this text, the Spirit of God, through the pen of a stubborn apostle, single-handedly dismantles any and all preconceived notions about how the Christian life is supposed to work.

The Gospel Doesn’t Blow Smoke

Perhaps the most unfamiliar thing I’m going to have to get used to now that I’m a Pennsylvanian is the concept of burning trash. I never really thought about trash men and the weekly garbage pick-up system before. It just wasn’t a thing that crossed my mind that often, if at all. But now that I’m living in a location that doesn’t have access to such a benefit, I am obligated to live out whatever latent pyromaniacal tendencies might exist in my subconscious.

Welcome to the First Church of Mount Everest

Our society is runs on achievement. It’s the fuel that powers our motivational motors. As long as we’re getting ahead of the next person, we’re fulfilling our purpose. Everything is a competition and this life is our playing field. I don’t think there’s a more pristine example of this than the recent phenomena of “overcrowding” on the highest point of elevation in the entire world: Mount Everest.

It’s Not Up to You

You have to believe me when I say that it’s not my intent to carry on eviscerating children’s television. I’m only in my late-twenties but I fear my online persona at times comes across too curmudgeonly. Nevertheless, the vocals from my 2-year-old’s favorite Disney Junior show recently assaulted my eardrums . . . and my theology.

The Colossal Gospel of God: A Sermon from Ephesians 2

There are several portions of the Bible, for one reason or another, that stand out from among the rest. These passages are usually ones we would call “pillars of the faith.” Such is what the first ten verses are of Ephesians 2, in which the apostle Paul relays a gloriously grandiose picture of God’s colossal gospel.

#39: On My Testimony of Salvation

In this episode of Ministry Minded, I share my salvation testimony, the story of how God drew me to himself. It’s not that I suppose my testimony is crucial to tell; rather, I think each of our stories are equally important. No testimony of salvation is “better” or greater than the other.

Obedience That’s Already Finished

The rich young ruler’s inquiry to the Lord Jesus in Mark 10:17–22 (along with Matt. 19:16–22; Luke 10:25–28) remains increasingly prescient for us today. I would say that it’s most likely the hottest burning question on everyone’s tongue, even if it’s not explicitly admitted; that question being, “How do I secure a spot in heaven?”