Tag Archives: gospel

Moving away from Japan?

I have read on numerous sites about the dilemma of sending people into Japan to aid with the recovery effort from the destruction wrought by the Earthquake and Tsunami.  This is no doubt due to the radiation fears from the failing nuclear facilities.

I have read about missionaries moving even farther away from the destruction zone even though they were outside the radius area that was evacuated because of radiation fears.

I know what I am about to say might offend some people. And I will not argue with anyone who says my reflections are easy to make while living in the relative ease of Tennessee. Nevertheless here goes…

What I see demonstrated in the life of Jesus Christ is a move towards suffering. Jesus came into our world of suffering. He did not move away from it. He put himself squarely into the heart of it. Jesus not only put himself at risk, but he did finally lay down his life for his others (Mark 10:45).

In order to follow Jesus Christ we must take up our cross and follow him and we must be willing to lose our lives for his sake.

“Jesus told his disciples, ‘If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it’ (Matt 16:24-25) .”

Most of us know that Japan has been historically a nation hardened to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Here is a once in a lifetime opportunity to show the love of Jesus Christ and I am not sure if it is going to seized and taken by Christians.

Jesus said in John 15:13 “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.”

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Posted by on March 18, 2011 in Uncategorized


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Do YOU want to be known?

It is easy for pastors to get caught up in desiring praises from their peers.  For starters, pastors do not get their final grade cards until the judgment.  Oh, but we long for just a sneek peek at that report.  Many pastors who see little fruit or no visible fruit long to find confirmation of their pastoral ministries.  And the temptation for many is to find their confirmation through the recognition of peers.  Thoughts like the following sweep over us: if more people would read my blog…if more people would recognize me publicly as the pastor of that great church in town…if I could just be invited to speak at this event or this conference…then I’ll be known and I’ll receive some confirmation of my ministry.

And the truth is this: we have already been “noticed” by the One who matters most, namely God.  Because of Jesus, the following is true of every Christian: But if anyone loves God, he is known by God (1 Corinthians 8:3). This, of course, has nothing to do with our own merits.  We are known by God because we are in Christ.  And we are in Christ because of grace.

So who cares if I am known by man, when I am already known by God.

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Posted by on April 16, 2010 in Uncategorized



Shouldering Heavy Burdens

Westwood Baptist Church lost a wonderful member this week.  His name was Lewis Baker.  Not only did he serve the church well, but he served in the Firefighter Profession for 51 years.  For over thirty years he was the Chief Instructor at the Tennessee State Fire School where he trained many of the state’s firefighters.

I was asked to co-officiate his funeral with a fireman chaplain.  I had been prepared to expect a massive turnout with respect to firefighters.  Truly, over half of those present at the funeral were indeed firefighters from all over the state.  The processional of cars to the cemetery had around 60 fire vehicles.  Half the city of Murfreesboro stopped that afternoon as we made our way to the cemetery.

Although I am generally nervous before I preach every funeral, this one I was especially so because I wanted to serve the Lord, Lewis, and his family well.  As I was begging the Lord for his help that day to help me through the burden (a good burden), I was overwhelmed as the Lord brought to the very forefront of my soul, the burden that Jesus carried all by himself when he paid the debt of my sin on the cross.

My Savior knows how to carry burdens.  And my Savior knows how to see me through mine.


Posted by on March 6, 2010 in Uncategorized


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Around the Blogosphere

At the Together for Adoption site, they have posted summaries of the speakers who spoke this past weekend at their conference in Franklin, TN.  The audio will be up shortly. 

Beginning at 5 PM Central time, Trevin Wax will be live-blogging the Southern Baptists, Evangelicals, and the Future of Denominationalism conference hosted at Union University in Jackson, TN.

Russell Moore explains how David Letterman can teach us about the Gospel.

William Mounce on double-tongued deacons and translation theory.


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Posted by on October 6, 2009 in Uncategorized


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