What is Moralistic Therapeutic Deism? Listen to this week’s White Horse Inn where they discuss a video about Teenagers and God. We need to get this!

Click for info on Soul Searching Video


OK, I expect to hear from everyone in the core group on this one. I’m serious! Leave a comment!

 I was thinking about our mission and came up with this statement:

 Our mission at EGF is to glorify God by spreading a passion for Jesus Christ by penetrating Charlotte with the light of the gospel.

 What do you think? If you aren’t in the core group, let us know what you think, too. Thanks!

If anyone is looking for a good book to read on what we are all about. Here it is. I haven’t read the book yet, but have followed Voddie Baucham this last year and know where he stands on this issue. Jim Hamilton says of the book (which I will be reading ASAP), “If you care about the next generation being more Christian than American, you should read this book.” This would be a great Connecting Group Study or just for your own personal benefit. If you would like to start a Connecting Group with this book, let me know.

Here is a great word from Richard Baxter from the 17th century in his work The Reformed Pastor. By God’s grace, this is what I want to be for you at Enjoying God Fellowship:

“It is, you see, all the flock, or every individual member of our charge. To this end it is necessary that we should know every person that belongeth to our charge; for how can we take heed to them, if we do not know them? We must labor to be acquainted, not only with the persons, but with the state of all our people, with their inclinations and conversations; what are the sins of which they are in most danger, and what duties they are most apt to neglect, and what temptations they are most liable to; for if we know not their temperament or disease, we are not likely to prove successful physicians.”

When Christ is Head of the Local Church 

At this point in history it would be rather difficult to provide convincing evidence that Jesus Christ is head of His church. Evidence for a church submitted to His headship would not come from the songs they sing, where the body of Christ chooses to meet, the size and number of church facilities and congregation, or the charisma of the pastor(s). A local church whose members submit to Christ’s headship would be:

1. Founded on the gospel of Jesus Christ-I Cor.3:11
2. Committed to the preaching of God’s Word-Acts 6:4; II Tim.3:16-4:5
3. Governed by Spirit-filled men-Acts 6:1-7; I Tim.3:1-13; Tit.1:5-9; Gal.6:1
4. Committed to “the praise of the glory of His grace”-I Cor.1:30-31; Eph.1:6, 12, 14
5. Defenders of sound doctrine-I Tim.1:3-11; 4:1-11, 13, 16; 6:3; II Tim.1:13; Tit.1:10-14
6. United in the Spirit-Eph.4:1-3 ; I Cor.1:10ff
7. Equipped for ministry and active in it-Eph.4:11-12; I Cor.12-14
8. Suffering for Christ’s sake-Rom.8:18-39; I Pet.1:6-8; 4:12 (in persecution and inner turmoil)
9. Walking in a manner worthy of their calling-Eph.4:1; I Thess.2:12
10. Characterized by and committed to prayer-I Thess.5:17; Acts 6:4
11. Excercised in church discipline-I Cor.5; Mt.18
12. Seeking God’s wisdom in all decisions, major and trivial-Acts 6:1-7
13. Rejoicing in God their Savior-I Thess.5:16
14. And keeping Christ preeminent in all things-Col.1:18

These are just thoughts I have had recently as I have reflected on the condition of many local churches I am personally acquainted with. What will it take for the local church to return to Jesus Christ as its Head?

 -Rev. J. Theodore Helms

 -originally posted at Our Sovereign Joy

Listen to John Piper explain why we don’t need to feel like we have to close the deal every time we tell an unbeliever about Jesus (3 min).

Bob Pratico from Sojourn Church in Huntsville Alabama offers the following (the post is a couple of months old) guideline to determine if you are in fact Missional in your Christian walk:

1) A significant number of your friends are unbelievers. (Unbelievers like to spend time with you. Jesus seemed to spend a lot of time with unbelievers in the gospels and they were apparently comfortable with Him for the most part. Jesus was the friend of sinners – Luke 7:34. It was the religious hypocrites that felt threatened and couldn’t stand Him.)

2) Many of your Christian friends are from other denominations and churches. (You’re comfortable with the whole Body of Christ, not just your local part. You value the rich diversity in the Kingdom of God – 1 Cor 12:12-26)
3) You listen more than you talk. (You want to know where people are coming from and where they’re at. You genuinely seek to understand what people are telling you, not merely use it as an opportunity to mentally formulate what you’re going to say next. Jesus always began interacting with anyone by listening. Luke tells us that at age twelve, Jesus was in the temple with the Doctors of the Law, listening to them and asking questions – Luke 2:46. Before he healed people, Jesus listened to their stories of illness, loneliness, and rejection.)

4) You see no distinction between sacred and secular. (Everything you do in life is enthusiastically for the glory of God – 1 Cor 10:31. You live for and look to Christ in everything you do.)

5) You’re painfully aware of how little you really know and how far you have to go. (You never stop learning. You read a lot. You’re not afraid to say, “I don’t know.” The more you learn, the more you realize just how little you really know. Job learned this hard lesson in Job 38:1 through Job 42:3 – read through all 4 chapters!)

6) You take risk – enough so that you sometimes fail. (You like to push the envelope knowing those that never fail, never live to their full potential. You’re more afraid you won’t use your full potential than you are of failure. The words of Jesus in Matthew 25:28 as translated by “The Message” ring for you: ’Take the thousand and give it to the one who risked the most. And get rid of this “play-it-safe” who won’t go out on a limb. Throw him out into utter darkness.’).

7) You have a long-term perspective. (You understand following and serving Jesus is a marathon, not a sprint. You’re in it for the long haul. You realize evangelization takes time; long-term results are more important than short-term trends. You don’t quit. Heb 12:1 exhorts us to “run with perseverance (endurance) the race marked out for us.”)

8) You tune in, not dial out, the culture. (Your unbelieving friends see you as a part of their culture – not outside it. You stay abreast of where the culture is and where’s its heading. You know how to connect with the culture without necessarily embracing it. Christ’s words in 1 Cor 9:19-22 as translated in “The Message” apply: “Even though I am free of the demands and expectations of everyone, I have voluntarily become a servant to any and all in order to reach a wide range of people: religious, nonreligious, meticulous moralists, loose-living immoralists, the defeated, the demoralized—whoever. I didn’t take on their way of life. I kept my bearings in Christ—but I entered their world and tried to experience things from their point of view. I’ve become just about every sort of servant there is in my attempts to lead those I meet into a God-saved life. I did all this because of the Message. I didn’t just want to talk about it; I wanted to be in on it!”)

9) You differentiate between essential and nonessential. (You know when to fall on your sword and when not to. Not every battle is climactic; many are small skirmishes best fought with patience and love instead of brute force. In Luke 10:41, Jesus gently reminds Martha that some things are more important than others.)

10) You care for the poor (Your care goes beyond writing a check for a tax deduction. You give, not out of a guilty conscience, but out of loving desire. The wealthy loved Jesus until he started to talk about loving the poor (Luke 18:18-23.) In the gospels, Jesus spent far more time with the poor than with the rich. He exhorts us to give to the poor (Luke 12:33). It’s interesting that Paul records the other apostles only request of him to be that he remember the poor (Gal 2:10)

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