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Archeological Integrationism

IMG_8690.JPGAs I write these words, I am sitting less than one mile from the Old City in Jerusalem. Yesterday my group spent 12 hours learning, walking, exploring, dare I say bustling through the Old City observing everything from the Holy Sepulchre to the Temple Mount. It was a combination of both culture shock and the collision of my faith with the historical details that have informed it for the past decade. As I prepared for this day, many said to me that I would never read the Bible in the same way. They were wrong: I will never approach my faith in Jesus, the Christ, in the same way. Yet, I still push back against archeological integrationism that necessitates this trip to inform my faith.  (more…)

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A Response to David Murray’s Misappropriation of Common Grace

 

Screen Shot 2018-03-16 at 8.22.37 PMDavid Murray has had much to say about biblical counseling within the past few years since assuming his teaching position at Puritan Reformed Theological Seminary in 2007. Of his publications, he has written mostly within the area of practical theology and now has placed himself within the biblical counseling movement. Most recently, in his article on The Gospel Coalition’s website, “How Biblical is Biblical Counseling?” he identified himself as a family member of the biblical counseling movement with some familial concerns.[2] His concerns have stimulated conversations within the biblical counseling movement of the nature and validity of the term biblical counseling.[3] His critique proved to be helpful in promoting clarity in what biblical does and does not mean as we use it within the context of biblical counseling. However, his article provided clarity in a way that was—most likely—not Murray’s intent. The reason being is that his article has encouraged biblical counselors to think well about their own position and, consequently, Murray’s misrepresentation of it.

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2017 CDT Laguna Hills

The Call to All Christians:

Books that were referenced Competent to Counsel by Jay Adams, Theology of Biblical Counseling by Heath Lambert

Counseling Is An Every Member Ministry (Student’s Outline)

 

How Does Change Happen?

Books Referenced: Transformed into His Likeness;    How does change happen (Student’s Outline)

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Worshipfully Prioritize Your Marriage by Faith!

 

(This post is an addendum to a sermon preached July 16, 2017 at Faith Community Church in Newhall, CA. You can find the PowerPoint here: Strengthening Your Core–Marriage (FCC 7.16.17).)

Below are some practical tools to help you prioritize your marriage by faith:

  1. Digital Boundaries: This means you need a location to keep your phones while at home so that they are not always on you, and always demanding your attention. A simply priority would be that you do not engage technology before you meaningfully engage your spouse.
  2. First Fifteen Minutes Project: Another thing that I encourage couples to all the time is the idea of crystallizing the first fifteen minutes that you are home for each other. This means that the wife stops what she’s doing if she’s home, or the husband stops what he’s doing and you guys take 15 minutes to talk with each other. We have to hang up the phone when our spouse walks in the door. We have to put dinner on hold for a few minutes. This is just a very practical way of saying you matter to me. You’re a priority. Children—be quiet. TV—be quiet. Telephone—be quiet. My spouse is home and they are a priority to me.
  3. 3-2-1-1 Communication Exercise
  4. _Intimacy Inventory.docx

Cultivating Contentment through God-Enabled Obedience

**Sermon preached at Grace on the Ashley Baptist Church in Charleston, SC

The Puritans on Habits and Spiritual Maturity

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Introduction

In the history of the church and particularly counseling within the church, there has been a house, of sorts, that is developing. Faithful, competent men and women are slowly building the house of biblical counseling on a solid foundation.[1] One of these men—Jay Adams—spoke into the some of the load-bearing walls within this house. Jay Adams said one load-bearing wall is that,

Few, if any, recent theologians have discussed the relationship of habit to behavior. Their efforts have been expended on important questions having to do with Adam’s sin, the effects of sin upon the nature of his descendants, and the process by which sin has been transmitted to his posterity. These are all vital questions, as I have noted in the earlier chapter. But so is the matter of habit—especially for counseling.[2]

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Harnessing Technology and Social Media for the Glory of God (Transcript)

“If these qualities are in you, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful.”

—2 Peter 1:8
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Tide of Technology

 I grew up on the opposite side of the United States in Savannah, GA. One of our favorite summer activities was going to the beach, as I am sure many of you would agree with. When you go to the beach you stake out your piece of sand, set up your stuff, pop out the umbrella and then start to hang out. What I quickly learned growing up is that when swim in the ocean you have to keep track of how far out you are going. It is easy to lose track of how far out you have gone, or perhaps how far you have drifted from your spot in the sand. One of the things that most of us do when we are out in the water at the beach is that we keep turning around and checking where our stuff is. (As a Dad admittedly my spot is not as cool as it once was. Now I spend my time looking back for the stroller and kids toys.) What happens is that unbeknownst to us, the tide pulls us in certain ways: sometimes this is very dangerous, too. People can be pulled too far out and have great difficulty getting back to shore, thus putting them in a really difficult position.

Today, I have been asked to speak on technology and social media and I want to start by describing it much like this tide in the ocean. Technology serves much like the tide of the ocean. Often times we are swimming around in technology to the point that we don’t always realize where it is pulling us and how. In fact, some of you are the one’s facing the ocean and you are losing track of how far you have gone. Perhaps, to a great degree of danger. (more…)

Being Squeezed by Life

3879_baloons_Often times in counseling, I use the idea of a balloon. Like a balloon we are squeezed by our circumstances in life: jobs, family, politics, houses, et cetera. These are things that James 1 would describe as a trial (v. 15). But there are also those pressures that come from inside, like the over-inflation of a balloon, they encourage us to ‘pop’. This is the idea of James 1:13 when James refers to those inner solicitations to sin—those enticements come from within. (more…)

Part 1: Gaze on God and Imitate What You See

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“Therefore, be imitators of God, as beloved children.”

—Ephesians 5:1

In 1961, Albert Bandura conducted a social experiment with seventy-two, 3-6 year-olds. The experiment is famously known as the, “Bobo Doll” experiment in which Bandura’s Social Learning Theory (1977) was evaluated. The experiment took seventy-two children and placed them in a room for observation for twenty minutes each. (more…)

King Agag and Your Television: When We Tolerate Sin

King Agag and Your Television

       King Agag and Your Television

We were in the woods near Columbus, GA where I was doing training with the Army and at one of the locations we stayed, there were showers! Hallelujah! When you have sweat for the past few days, a shower is worth its weight in gold. However, there was one catch—the water was cold … really cold. The only way you could take a shower was to acclimate to the coldness and attempt to rinse off the soap and shampoo. But before long, the cold water was not as shocking. We could hop right in, get clean, and continue on with life. After a while, the extremely cold water became normal. And sin has a way of taking something extremely shocking and making it normal.  (more…)