December 6, 2023
Success in ministry

Should We Find Joy in Our Ministry Achievements?

“Do not rejoice in that this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.” (Luke 10:20) Over the years, I have heard various missionaries and Christian leaders say that these words of Jesus indicate that he intends that his disciples should find their joy and satisfaction not in their ministries but rather in their personal salvation (justified status with God). I found a recent example of this thinking in a book I am reading, The Emotionally Healthy Leader. Jesus sends out seventy-two disciples two by two. When they return, they are excited to report significant numerical impact and that the demons submit to them in his name. Jesus affirms their activity of kingdom building, but he also reminds them of something more important: “Do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven” (Luke… Read the whole post
Book Reviews

Review of the God Ask

It’s been a long, long time since I have had any training in partner development.  More than 30 years have passed since I went through “candidate school” and first “raised my support” as we called it back then. This year, at part of my Individual Growth Plan, I wanted to learn some new skills in this area, and decided to read The God Ask: A Fresh, Biblical Approach to Personal Support Raising by Steve Shadrach.  I ended up listening to it as an audio book over a period of a few weeks on my morning runs and walks (see previous blog post).  What a valuable resource!  I wish I had read it ten years ago, although I guess that would have been impossible, since it was only published in 2013.… Read the whole post
Book Reviews

Review of What is Biblical Theology?

  Review of James M. Hamilton Jr., What is Biblical Theology?: A Guide to the Bible’s Story, Symbolism, and Patterns. Wheaton: Crossway, 2014.In Jackson Wu’s book, One Gospel for All Nations, he states, “Missionary training must emphasize biblical theology, not simply systematic theology.” (25). I could not agree with him more. I was delighted when I came across James Hamilton’s book, What is Biblical Theology? because here was a short (128 pages) clear explanation and example of biblical theology. Hamilton makes it clear that, “by biblical theology [he] does not mean ‘my theology is more biblical than yours.’” (Kindle location 136). The author states, “To do biblical theology is to think about the whole story of the Bible. We want to understand the organic development of the Bible’s teaching so that we are interpreting particular parts of the story in light of the whole.” (Kindle location 102) He further notes,… Read the whole post
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