Suffering Women to Learn?

In The Nick of Time
by Deborah Forteza and Kevin T. Bauder

“But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man…”
1 Timothy 2:12

Is it ever right for a seminary to give theological education to a woman? That depends upon what you think the purpose of a seminary is.

Most of our seminaries claim to exist in order to assist local churches in training church leaders. They especially focus on preparing pastors. Even so, nearly every seminary has students that do not enroll with a desire to shepherd a flock or to enter vocational ministry. Some of these students want to be better disciplers; others hope to be good Bible study leaders; and some simply wish to understand the Scriptures better for their own personal growth.

One could argue that if a seminary has been established to prepare pastors, then people who do not intend to be pastors should not be accepted. Few, if any, seminaries are that stringent, however. Who would object to admitting a student who simply wanted to be a knowledgeable and faithful deacon, even if he never meant to become a pastor? Indeed, would it not be unreasonable to deny seminary education to any believer who sincerely desired to study the Scriptures, increase in knowledge, and nourish his love of God?
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God-Focused Conversation and Worship

I am a devoted pursuer of this topic. Sure, I like ice cream, oak furniture, running shoes, fast bikes, tuned skis, ocean beaches, and exotic cultures. I drink Mountain Dew. I enjoy good mountaineering. I sprint after my kids for some fun tickle-tag, and I smooch my wife (an absolute blast). But it is God at the center who brings everything into true joyous praying.jpgharmony. The fuel for my needy, earthy heart is stepping into the mind of God, understanding God, giving glory to God, and serving God. I told Aaron Young, a good pastor pal in Nevada, that I can hardly wait for the God-Focused Conference at Red Cliff Bible Camp. It is a must that I become more God-focused.
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Why Do They Leave Fundamentalism? Part 2

See Part 1.

Retrain Your Conscience?

In his lecture, Joe Zichterman made many references to Christian liberty and Romans 14. We should discuss this topic because the misunderstanding of Christian liberty is an important stone in paving the way for a young fundamentalist (YF) to leave Fundamentalism.

rudder.jpgThe Willow Creek membership manual states, “We do not take stands on controversial issues about which the Bible is silent. Individuals are left to their own consciences before the Lord, rather than depending on the church to tell them what to think or do.” … Unjustifiable dogmatism on disputable matters is a clear violation of the spirit of Romans 14 … . [I]n Acts 15 when the Judaizers were insisting that gentiles be [circumcised] before they could be accepted as full members of the Jerusalem church? Paul told the Galatians later he wouldn’t put up with that for a single minute. You can’t give the impression of dogmatism where Scripture does not allow you to do so (17:48).

Joe used an example from an Amish acquaintance:
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Book Reviews—The Priority and Task of Preaching

John Cheeseman. The Priority of Preaching. Edinburgh: The Banner of Truth Trust, 2006. 27 pp. $2.00/paperback.

(Review copy courtesy of Banner of Truth)

priority.jpgPurchase: Banner of Truth, CBD
Special features: [listing of 38 other booklets in the series from Banner of Truth Trust]

ISBNs: 9780851519456 / 08151519458

LCCN: BV4211.3

DCN: 251

John Cheeseman was ordained to the Christian ministry in 1976. He has served as Vicar of Holy Trinity, Eastbourne, since 2001; and is the author of Saving Grace published by Banner of Truth. He is also a Church Society Trust Director.

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A Christian Leader

In The Nick of Time

For the first time in nearly 10 years, Douglas McLachlan is not my pastor. His retirement service at Fourth Baptist Church (Plymouth, MN) took place last Sunday night. Filled with remembrances and a few tears, it was a fitting conclusion to 18 years of ministry at Fourth.

For a decade, I observed Pastor McLachlan. It was a fascinating experience. With about 15 years of pastoral experience, I had some idea of what to look for. My conclusion is that Douglas McLachlan is one of the best models of pastoral leadership that anyone could ever have.

The first thing most people noticed about Pastor McLachlan was his unique style of preaching. His outlines sometimes bristled with alliteration, and his vocabulary often included words of his own coinage. Though he was sometimes criticized for these peculiarities (and tried to use them less as time went by), those who knew him found his uniqueness to be endearing. His sermons, however, were anything but gimmicks. He studied hard and read constantly. He put considerable thought into what he wanted to say and how he wanted to say it. He was convinced of the value of expository preaching. He aimed to communicate the Scriptures while making himself as unobtrusive as possible. Read more about A Christian Leader

Book Review—The Little Handbook to Perfecting the Art of Christian Writing

Goss, Leonard, and Don Aycock. The Little Handbook to Perfecting the Art of Christian Writing. Nashville, TN: B&H Publishing Group, 2006. 267 pp., $14.99/paperback

(Review copy courtesy of B&H Publishing)

perfecting2.jpgPurchase: B&H Publishing, CBD

Special Features: The back of the book features a sample style guide, which is an excerpt from The Little Style Guide to Great Christian Writing and Publishing, Leonard G. Goss and Carolyn Stanford Goss (Nashville, Tenn.: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2004).

ISBNs: 0805432647 / 9780805432640

LCCN: BR44 .G66 2006

DCN: 808.0662 GOSS

Subject(s): Christian Literature, Authorship, Publishing Read more about Book Review—The Little Handbook to Perfecting the Art of Christian Writing

Why Do They Leave Fundamentalism? Part 1

Is the Grass Greener?

“It’s nice of you to come, but we are not coming to your church. Your music is awful.” That’s what she told him. She was on morphine, lying in a hospital bed after abdominal surgery. He said some kind words that would not be remembered and left his card on her bedside stand. In a couple of hours, this green_grass.gifcard would be confirmation of a conversation she hoped had not actually taken place.

She was my wife, and this event occurred a few weeks into our encounter with a “church growth” type of church. I’ll call it Charity Community Church (CCC). We had visited CCC a couple of times and had asked for prayer in Sunday school for Jenny’s upcoming surgery. We had also been amazed by the music they used for worship. They had a band—with drums—and a real black man who jumped up and down as he led music, clapping and praying. She hoped the conversation hadn’t taken place because she really didn’t believe their music was awful. It simply wasn’t the music we were accustomed to using for worship.
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