Monday, 31 August 2009

Up-2-Date [31-08-09]

Not just important, not even just VERY important. "Of FIRST importance."
Why should anyone be led by you?
Mentoring revisited
Commitments of what kind?
The preacher's greatest temptation
What does it take to be in ministry?
The preacher's second greatest temptation
The end of youth ministry time management - Busyness vs. effectiveness
Obama - Hero worship (Part 1)
John Piper on reading and studying the Bible
God's word, good exposition, great joy, much strength
16 considerations about entering the ministry
Youth pastor skills 501 - Dealing with needy moms

Labels: , ,

Saturday, 29 August 2009

How theology should be done

Knowing God - Theology made relevant in Discipleship today
IDMC 2009 @ Covenant EFC

Session 5 - How theology should be done

- the architecture of theology (biblical, systematic, relevant, contemporary, practical, ref. M.Erickson)
- defining the theological task

How theology should be done: Back to basics

A. The necessity of theological vision
- the cultivation of a right and high view of God
- developing a theological framework (3 anchors - God is good; God is in control; God will bring it to pass)

B. The necessity of theological foundation
- the thinkability of God is a grand and profound notion
- divine revelation as the key to theology!

C. The necessity of theological contemplation
- at the heart of theology is thinking more godly about God
- theology leads to doxology!

D. The necessity of theological pedagogy
- theology must be pedagogical
- the narrative as a profound theological pedagogy

E. The necessity of theological holism
- theological holism is integrating truth with life
- four basic building blocks to holistic theological integration (orthodoxy, orthopraxis, orthokardia, orthokoinonia)

F. The necessity of theological humility
- theology as an unfinished task
- theology as a holistic task (ref. G.Cole "Thinking Theologically")

- the need for theological leadership (Jer 9:23-24; Jn 17:3)

The chief task (of theologizing) ... takes us to grand discovery of the very heart of God - that we might meaningfully and gratefully worship Him in every arena of life.
Theology leads to doxology; thinking about God leads to knowing and loving Him.
God is good; God is in control; God will bring it to pass.
Knowledge puffs up, but theology that is done well humbles.

Labels: , , , , ,

Developing a biblical worldview

Knowing God - Theology made relevant in Discipleship today
IDMC 2009 @ Covenant EFC

Session 6 - Developing a biblical worldview

- importance of worldview
- definition of worldview
- what then is a Christian worldview?

Worldview: From default to design

A. Your theology of the WORLD (community)
- 1 Jn 2:15; Jn 3:16
- To be IN the world but not OF the world!

B. Your theology of WORK (calling)
- Neh 5:19
- Don't confuse your name card with your calling card! (servant & child)

C. Your theology of WEALTH (consumption)
- Matt 6:24
- Life on earth is neither a PARTY nor a CURSE; life on earth is a STEWARDSHIP!

D. Your theology of WELFARE (compassion)
- Deut 15:11
- While compassion supersedes commitment, yet often it is commitment that precedes compassion!

E. Your theology of WHAT'S TO COME (consummation)
- Matt 24:25, 28
- Don't just be AWAKE - be also ALERT!

- developing a biblical worldview
- your theology of the WORD

We don't try to be disciples; we train to be disciples - Bill Hull
Our behaviour either confirms or betrays what we believe (really believe, not just what we believe).
Where you live determines how you live.
It is not the important things that make a significant life. A significant life in Christ determines the important things e.g. loving people.

Labels: , , , , , ,

The pursuit of godliness

Knowing God - Theology made relevant in Discipleship today
IDMC 2009 @ Covenant EFC

Session 7 - The pursuit of godliness

- re-defining godliness

Three keys to godliness as seen in 2 Peter 1:3-4

A. See what God has granted (2 Pet 1:3a)
- most important faculty of leadership is to SEE
- we must see that godliness is possible
- 3 lessons in this passage: adequacy from God, privilege of God, grace in God

B. Know what God has revealed (2 Pet 1:3b)
- theology is not just propositional, but person-based (revelation)
- true versus empty knowledge
- key response to Him: allegiance, happy surrender
- glory of His power, excellence of His grace

C. Believe what God has promised (2 Pet 1:4)
- knowing God: the life of God in the souls of man
- message to the 21st century church: I'm hurt, I doubt, I can't, I'm too busy

- the pursuit of godliness

The depth of our life determines the quality and breadth of our ministry.
Godliness is God-centeredness, centering God in the center of our lives. Godliness is not just piety, but the life of God in us, a hunger and passion for things pertaining to God.

Labels: , , , , , , , ,

Friday, 28 August 2009

Five features of theological rootlessness

Knowing God - Theology made relevant in Discipleship today
IDMC 2009 @ Covenant EFC

Session 4 - Five Features of Theological Rootlessness

- a superficial faith without a deep theological foundation

A. The de-doctrinization of Christianity
- anti-intellectualism: doctrine as a dirty word (disappearance of evangelical theology)
- the marginalization of theological education (theological competence, not credentials)

B. Zeal without knowledge
- the rise of biblical illiteracy
- biblical exhortation vs. biblical exposition
- an inherent weakness in Bible study groups

C. The secularization of spirituality
- the seduction of Christian animism and superstition
- the subversion of postmodernity (fideism, nihilism)

D. The presumptuousness of faith
- the problem is not with an experiential faith but with a presumptuous faith!
- four types of faith (God can; God will; God must; "God, you are" faith)

E. The compromise of worldview
- the rise of religious pluralism (ontological vs. philosophical pluralism)
- the atrophy of biblical discipleship

- the intellectual contours of faith - why bother?

We cannot understand the good news if we do not understand the bad news. - Francis Schaeffer
In the contemporary revelation of ideas, what engages the Christian mind is no longer "what's true" but rather "what works".
Faith is not a leap in the dark; faith is a walk in the light!
The health of the soul is dependent on the nobility of the mind.
What one generation neglects, the next generation rejects.
The genesis or engine of transformation is not social activism, but the power of the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Labels: , , ,

The Grandeur of God

Knowing God - Theology made relevant in Discipleship today
IDMC 2009 @ Covenant EFC

Session 2 - The Grandeur of God

A. A beginner's theological contemplation
- Your knowledge, capacity, power increases

B. Contours of inevitability
- Omnipresence is not merely a theological description of mastering the space-dimension but also the time-dimension!

C. God as the Almighty Creator
- Creation ex-nihilo
- Imago Dei

D. The Grandeur of God
- A theological reflection on Psalm 8
- Theology of a singing God (Zeph 3:17)

- How Great Thou Art

The grandeur of God ... not for what He can do, but for who He is (a God of love).
Love is bringing about power under measured control.
The chief attribute of God is love (1 Cor 13:13).

Labels: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The Theocentricity of the Scriptures

Knowing God - Theology made relevant in Discipleship today
IDMC 2009 @ Covenant EFC

Session 3 - The Theocentricity of the Scriptures

- the centrality of the Word of God in Discipleship (Lk 24)
- the fallacy of an anthropocentric orientation

A. The Theological Premise
- The central theme of the Scriptures is ... (covenant, ref. W.Kaiser)
E.g. Why did Jesus come from heaven to earth? (for the glory of God)
- The Scriptures were written with a theological premise
E.g The theology of the Pentateuch

B. The Theocentricity of the Scriptures (from a man-centred approach to a God-centered approach)
E.g. the theology of Isaiah 40:31 (trustworthy, everlasting God)
E.g. the theology of Psalm 1 (approval of God, judgment day)

C. Seeing the God-picture (3 spectacles to see with)
- the story and the surprise
- the speech and the silence
- the symbol and the structure

- from the WORD of God to the GOD of the Word

The Bible is not a book of messages, but a book of meetings; not propositions, but an invitation to know Him.
The defining attribute of God is holiness (Isa 6; Deut 6:4-6).
The approval of God is of ultimate importance in life.
Obedience is the greatest expression of stewardship.

Labels: , , , , , , ,

Thursday, 27 August 2009

Knowing God

Knowing God - Theology made relevant in Discipleship today
IDMC 2009 @ Covenant EFC

Session 1 - Knowing God
The Potter and the clay (Jer 18:1-17)

3 fundamental things to note about KNOWING GOD:
  1. It does not begin with a clever mind (v.1-2)
  2. It cannot happen with a stubborn will (v.3-17)
  3. It will not deepen with a presumptuous heart (v.3-8)
- A fresh encounter with God

A few quotes to reflect on:
Theology is a biblical, devout contemplation of God, the chief aim of which is to learn to think more godly about God, in order that we might know and love Him. - Edmund Chan
Surrender is not giving up, but giving in to God. - Edmund Chan
My life in my hand is a pain and a problem. My life in God's hand is a power and a possibility! - E. Stanley Jones
Related articles
Missions - Keeping up with ... (Time magazine interview with E. Stanley Jones, 24 Jan 1964)

Labels: , , , , , , ,

Saturday, 22 August 2009

Sermon - Heb 10:19-25 - Chronicles of Koinonia

Sermon on Hebrews 10:19-25 - Chronicles of Koinonia.

Labels: , , ,

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

The False Gospel of Prosperity Theology
by Albert Mohler (Christian Post, 18 Aug 2009)

"God knows where the money is, and he knows how to get the money to you." That was the message of Gloria Copeland as she was speaking at the Southwest Believers' Convention recently held in Fort Worth, Texas. The event drew the attention of The New York Times and reporter Laurie Goodstein contributed a compelling report about the meeting and its message.

The Southwest Believers' Convention drew a crowd of more than 9,000 to hear an "all-star lineup" of preachers deliver the message of the prosperity gospel. One by one, the preachers and the speakers enticed the gathered thousands by offering them the assurance that God wants them rich -- even fabulously rich.
(read more)

Labels: , , , , , ,

Monday, 17 August 2009

Time well wasted
Why you need downtime and how to spend it.
by John Ortberg (CT, 17 Aug 2009)

  1. The discipline of solitude
  2. Musing
  3. Production enhancement
(read more)

Labels: , , , ,

Sunday, 16 August 2009

National Day Rally 2009

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong focused on four key issues in his sixth National Day Rally speech this year - the economy, healthcare, social harmony and shaping Singapore together. He spent a significant amount of time (40 min) focusing on social cohesion, particularly racial and religious harmony.
He noted the global trend of rising religiosity and that Singapore has also been carried along by this global tide. He acknowledged that religion was a positive force in societies, but warned against the risks of aggressive proselytisation, intolerance and exclusiveness by any religious group.
He also highlighted four guiding principles
  1. All groups must exercise tolerance and restraint
  2. Religion must stay separate from politics
  3. The government must remain secular
  4. The common space that all Singaporeans share must be maintained
Related articles
Observers say race, religion will continue to shape Singapore's politics (CNA, 20 Aug 09)
Race, religion garner biggest public response on REACH (CNA, 20 Aug 09)
PM's 4 basic rules for religious harmony (PMO, 17 Aug 09)
Social cohesion speech timely as complacency may have set in (CNA, 17 Aug 09)
PM Lee speaks of principles of engagement in religious sphere (CNA, 16 Aug 09)
English text of National Day Rally Speech 2009 in Malay (Today, 16 Aug 09)
National Day Rally 2009 highlights (AsiaOne, 16 Aug 09)
938Live Podcast of National Day Rally Speech and Message 2009

Labels: , , , , ,

Get a Bible with all the words

Labels: , ,

Saturday, 15 August 2009

Up-2-Date [15-08-09]

What kind of men are you looking for?
iTunes U
Hybels opens leadership summit with 'Rogue Waves'
'Most religious' college students of 2009 revealed
Christians to rally in Calif. to defend 'Jesus' prayers
Megachurch pastor guides Christians on alcohol, R-rated movies
Five loaves and two fishes
Qualifications of a youth pastor
If you are an atheist, don't talk to me!
Me, myself and God
Bible study/small group vs. a gospel/missional community
Talking about the wrath of God?
Gaming addiction: There is hope
9 things I learnt about God from planet Earth
SM Goh Chok Tong outlines 10 major challenges for next generation

Labels: , ,

Marshmallow test

Labels: , , ,

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Danger: God
What should we think about a deity who gives us sticks of dynamite to play with?
by Mark Galli (CT, 13 Aug 2009)

ack in the early sixties, a book was published with the title, The Suburban Captivity of the Churches. I never read it, but it strikes me as an apt description of American Christianity, and a mirror image of the unnerving God of the church.

The suburbs are not the incarnation of social evil, as some critics would have us believe. But they do tend to shape us (as does the city, as does rural life!). And some of that shaping has not been for the church's best.

Let's take one famous quality of suburban life: safety. I live in a suburb in the Midwest where the biggest news items in the police blotter in our local paper usually have to do with shoplifting or DUIs or the occasional bicycle theft. Murders, rapes, armed robberies and the like—few and very, very far between. It's a safe place to live. Safe is good.

(read more)

Labels: , , , , ,

Saturday, 8 August 2009

National Day Message 2009

Labels: , , , , ,

Saturday, 1 August 2009

Nick Vujicic - Life without limbs

Labels: , , ,