How do you know that you are really a Christian? The trouble with Christians is that they tend to look at themselves too much. The trouble with looking at yourself too much is that you will eventually freak out. Why? The longer you look at yourself, and I mean truly look at yourself, you will be… Continue reading Assurance, Justification & Sanctification
Why do Christians struggle with assurance of their salvation? In the last post I explored the Bible’s teaching about salvation generally. In this post I want us to go a little further and think about how that salvation works. At the heart of the Gospel, at the heart of salvation, is the doctrine of justification. What… Continue reading Assurance & Justification
Saved by “Faith”? Faith is a fairly important concept in the Bible. True faith is amongst the highest of virtues and false faith among the most dangerous of pitfalls. It seems prudent, therefore, to make sure that we understand what “faith” means. How can we discern the difference between true faith and false faith? It… Continue reading Assurance & Faith
One of the greatest reasons why so many Christians today do not experience the peace that comes through the assurance of salvation can be summarised in one simple question. Can I truly be a Christian even if I fall to the same sin over and over again? The answer to this is “yes”. It is possible… Continue reading Assurance and Habitual Sin.
We all doubt our salvation. Sometimes people ask me what pastoral issues I’ve most often encountered in ministry. It is not a difficult question to answer. By far, the greatest concern for most people in the church is the question as to whether or not they are truly saved. Assurance of salvation has trumped all… Continue reading When you doubt your salvation.
In my last post, I spoke about the danger of zeal without knowledge. Ironically, those who feel most strongly about the church's health can very often become a hindrance to it. If we are passionate Christians, the onus is on us to make sure that our passion is both formed and informed by a solid… Continue reading What does it mean to be biblical?
Are you a passionate Christian? Are you passionate about evangelism? Are you passionate about holiness? Are you a threat to the health of your church? Does that last question seem out of place to you? I’ve started to notice a strange phenomenon in the Christian life: the most zealous people in the church can often… Continue reading Pitfalls in the Pursuit of Godliness
No. Let me explain. Normally when you hear this question, the answer goes something like this: "Yes you can be a Christian and not go to church because being a Christian is not about religion but about having a relationship with Jesus. You don't have to earn your relationship with Jesus, he gives it to… Continue reading Can you be a churchless Christian?
Last night in our Bible overview series at Bethesda Baptist Church we were considering the effects of sin in our world and in our lives. This morning I came across this excellent post on Tim Chester’s website and I reblog it here to help you defend yourself against the deceitfulness of sin.
The Puritan John Flavel identified six arguments which Satan uses to tempt as long with model responses. Here I’ve abridged and updated what Flavel says. See if you can spot the voice of temptation in your life and identify how you should respond.
- The pleasure of sin
Temptation: Look at my smiling face and listen to my charming voice. Here is pleasure to be enjoyed. Who can stay away from such delights?
The believer: The pleasures of sin are real, but so are the pangs of conscience and the flames of hell. The pleasures of sin are real, but pleasing God is much sweeter.
- The secrecy of sin
Temptation: This sin will never disgrace you in public because no-one will ever find out.
The believer: Can you find somewhere without the presence of God for me to sin?
- The profit of sin
Temptation: If you just stretch…
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