I’ve been reading about the Thomas Chantry trial at Thou Art the Man, and the shameful cover-ups of his abuse of young boys. Such a similar story to so many others, so many broken lives, so many years, so much harm, so much evil behavior from those who claim to represent Christ. Continue reading “Thoughts on conspiracies and conspiracy theorists, inspired by the Thomas Chantry trial”
What did God even mean when He said He had “led captivity captive”?
This is a truth from Psalm 68, which Paul reiterated in Ephesians 4. Our Lord Jesus Christ, when he defeated the enemy, took into exile the very concept of exile.
Here’s the joy for the people of God. The answer to the question in the headline is, if you have trusted in Jesus Christ for your salvation,
No! You are not and cannot be exiled from God. He is your Father and loves you.
There is great joy in that.
Note: You can share this poster on Facebook here.
In Quieting a Noisy Soul, author Jim Berg declares that the cause of the noisy soul is your sin: your unbelief, your discontent, and your guilty conscience (and as it turns out, your pride and your stubbornness). Throughout his nouthetic counseling teachings (nowadays called “Biblical counseling”), he assumes that the situation or person the counselee would have thought was causing the noisy soul is not a legitimate concern, but is instead simply the catalyst for sin in the heart, “a lust for more.” Continue reading “Cleanse your guilty conscience, get grace, and other solutions to the noisy soul (a response to Jim Berg, Part 3)”
Jim Berg claims that this nouthetic counseling program Quieting a Noisy Soul presents the solutions to anxiety, despair, obsessive compulsive behavior, panic attacks, anorexia, bulimia, and other problems.
Part 1 of this series covered the Problem (the noisy soul) and the Cause of the problem according to Jim Berg’s nouthetic counseling: your sin, specifically, your unbelief and your guilty conscience. “Noisy souls,” says Berg, “are self-absorbed souls.” Continue reading “The Solutions to the Noisy Soul – a response to Jim Berg – (Part 2)”
It’s one thing to hear or read Berg’s teachings through the ears of one who has sinned—for example, one who has traumatized another. It’s quite a different thing to listen or read through the ears of one who has been sinned against, that is, the oppressed. Continue reading “Quieting a Noisy Soul by Jim Berg – A Response (Part 1)”
Diane Langberg, preeminent Christian psychologist, counselor, and writer, has said many times, “Trauma is the mission field of the 21st century.” I’d change it slightly to say traumatized people are the mission field of the 21st century (since you can’t give the gospel to trauma, but you can give it to traumatized people), but I understand her point.
Why is it that one of the foremost evangelical Christian counselors of our day is saying this? Because especially in the complacent, comfortable Western world, trauma is increasing at exponential rates.
In the U.S., this would be in part because our government has been sending young men and women into combat without any letup for the past 15 years. Though I’d be up to a robust debate about the morality of this situation, that’s not the point here. The point here is that in the war environment they are being traumatized. Continue reading “An absolute must if you want to deeply help others in the church”
Yesterday I posted Part One of this study of some Scriptures that can be hard to understand, in response to a heartfelt letter from a reader. The questions I said I wanted to address were:
- If any unbelieving spouse wants to keep living in the house, does that mean the believing spouse has no choice but to let him stay?
- Can the believer actually make the unbelieving spouse holy?
- Does a believer staying with an unbelieving spouse mean the children will be born again?
- Should the believer persevere with the unbelieving spouse in hopes that she will be the cause of his salvation?
Some time ago I received this letter from a reader:
The scripture that caused more pain, confusion and hopelessness in my two-decade bondage in an abusive marriage was this one from 1 Cor.7:13-16.
“If you’re a woman married to an unbeliever and he wants to live with you, hold onto him. The unbelieving husband shares to an extent in the holiness of his wife…otherwise YOUR CHILDREN WOULD BE LEFT OUT; as it is, they also are included in the spiritual purposes of God. . . . For how do you know O wife whether YOU WILL SAVE your husband.”
Ohhh, the pain, the staggering confounding pain these verses have caused.
That was a trick question. In the teaching of logic it’s called a false dilemma.
Because you really don’t have to be either one. Continue reading “Are you the prodigal son or the older brother?”
Every year I take a writing retreat at The Evangelical Institute of Biblical Studies (link to website) in Greenville, SC. Affectionately called “EI,” it’s a tiny two-year Bible school (with an optional third year) that sits atop the highest mountain in Greenville County, with a lush campus and gorgeous views.