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  1. AA says:

    Happy Reformation day!

  2. Jean says:

    What is the difference between a sermon and a lecture?
    What are the elements of a good sermon?

    “I am interested in saving the word “preaching” from the damning reputation of being mere lecture. Preachers are delivering an unseen reality, namely the work of Christ for the forgiveness of sins. They are not merely describing a pastime event nor sharing some colorful theological opinions for your consideration, but delivering the reality of the forgiveness of sins straight into your ear-balls, as Dr. Rosenbladt used to say. They are making the work of Jesus your reality, giving Jesus to you, preaching Him for you.”
    – Rev. Bob Hiller

    For the whole article, use this link.

  3. Jean says:

    “You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life.” (John 5:38-40)

    Here are a couple of short videos (5 and 7 minutes), which unveil Christ in Genesis 1. They are wonderful, by an outstanding OT scholar.

  4. Em says:

    #2-enjoyed the link, Jean
    preaching, lecturing, teaching and more… pastoring… how many men (generic) can fulfill all those roles and for how many souls can they do so?

    and i’ll take radio, eve today – over TV, also 🙂 used to listen to Bob Kelley call the L.A. Rams’ (the real ones) out of town games – his voice irritated the whole family (i was a young teenager) – but summertime baseball on radio? all the family “needed” to hear those games as much as they needed shade – great memories

  5. Em says:

    “A lecture (from the French ‘lecture’, meaning ‘reading’ [process]) is an oral presentation intended to present information or teach people about a particular subject, for example by a university or college teacher. Lectures are used to convey critical information, history, background, theories and equations.” did a search online and i like this one as, for me a lecture is a well organized presentation and, if it is relevant to me, i drink it in…

    even a lecture from a parent works, if there’s no finger-wagging 🙂

    that said, preaching? isn’t that exhortation? oh how we need that – encouraging words, but what might encourage me, might be platitudinous or irrelevant to someone younger … dunno

  6. Michael says:

    I have no quarrel with anything that’s been said.
    I do quarrel with a trend to be reductionistic in preaching and teaching.
    Yes, the overall narrative of the Bible is about Christ and His work on behalf of his people.
    It is not, however, the only thing that must be taught from the Scriptures.
    I have watched some of my Reformed brethren strain to find Christ in every passage of the narrative and the strain gave the hearer a hernia trying to follow it.

    Catechesis is every bit as important and repeating the Gospel over and over again.
    You can do both without harming either.

  7. You don’t have to look that hard if you begin with the assumption that he is there and it is about him.

    But it does come down to, is the OT about Israel and Jesus makes cameo appearances or is it about Jesus and Israel is the background – like in a stage play, the main characters are up front and the background scenery and extras are in the back?

    When you preach / teach from the OT, if you preach that it is about anything other than Jesus, or how it affects his coming or his work, then you have taught / preached a Jewish message and not a Christian message.

  8. I am currently studying Zechariah, surprisingly not to teach but just for the heck of it, and it has convinced me that that the dawn of Christianity is found in Genesis and that when you think about it Judaism emerges in the first century of the NT era as a rejection of God’s earliest promise.. Funny how many have this backwards.

  9. And it is the writer to the Hebrews who is trying to explain that very point.

  10. Steve Wright says:

    When I was a new Christian, age 25, born again and life all new, with sins forgiven (and there were many…)

    I loved, and I mean LOVED learning the Bible and my favorite teachings were the ones filled with cross references, jumping all over the Bible – finding Jesus symbolized in every number, metal, image. I liked to teach Bible studies the same way, as they were interactive and we all could go back and forth with each other.

    I think it is no coincidence that I was young and in good health, also a newlywed with no children as of yet, working a very well paying job and living in a great place in prosperous Orange County, no debts, no problems – and though I was a terrible sinner in my past, I did not come from a lot of wreckage or a broken home (sins were all my stupidity in doing).

    And in that place in life I loved that sort of Bible study.

    When I was a child, I studied like a child, I listened like a child, I taught like a child, but when I became a man I put away the childish things.

    Over 20 years later, I study and teach quite differently today in Lake Elsinore.

    That’s my take and experience…something I tried to express earlier in the week.


  11. Steve,
    “Over 20 years later, I study and teach quite differently today in Lake Elsinore.”

    I wouldn’t brag about preaching a Christ-less message. Well, I should back it off because I am sure you will have Jesus make some kind of a cameo appearance.

    Some of us less mature teachers just go by the words of Jesus – that the old testament is about him and Paul’s admonition to preach Christ and him crucified.

    But hey, at least you congregation will get a great Jewish rendering of Psalms … but no Jesus. 😉

  12. Besides, I am at 35 yrs doing this – so perhaps when you catch up…

  13. This is what happens when people stop finding Jesus in all scriptures. A newsletter in my email from Rick Warren – he is at the far end, but it started the same way we are speaking of now.For the next 2 months, no Jesus at Saddleback…sounds familiar.

    October 30, 2015

    Dear Saddleback family,

    Is it possible that you are wasting your unused potential?

    Maybe you’ve been told, “You’re too old, too young, you don’t have the right education, etc.”
    Maybe you’ve had a dream, but were afraid to launch out.
    Maybe you’ve believed the doubts that Satan and others have planted in your mind.
    Maybe you‘ve tried, but failed, in a previous attempt.

    Do you just give up on your dream? NO!

    What you need is to do is just learn the right SKILLS. The Bible says, “Skill will bring success.” (Ecclesiastes 10:10)

    As your pastor, part of my job is to help coach you to become ALL God designed you to be. So this weekend, I’m launching two new programs to help you sharpen your skills for your life, your work, and your ministry.


    Between now and the end of the year, I’ll be sharing TOOLBOX FOR LIFE: Eight Skills You Need to Succeed (in life and work). This powerful and practical series will set you up for the rest of your life.

    2. Saddleback Advanced Leadership Training (SALT) restarts at ALL CAMPUSES this Sunday night from 6:00 to 8:00 PM. SALT is open to anyone serving in any ministry or program of our church. That’s over 25,000 of you!
    I’m going to teach you the skills that I’ve taught to world leaders around the globe.


  14. Em says:

    a pastor on another thread asked how honest and sincere workers in big ministries gone bad can avoid being collateral damage… been pondering a lot of rabbit trails off of that one… wonderful people and all out in service, not realizing that they are being used by a man or an organization for its own enrichment … and maybe God sees and the work gets done but..
    today i am wondering if this whole thing doesn’t have its roots in churches that are more concerned with keeping their members fired up rather than seeing that their members are *growing and maturing* in Christ … doesn’t the whole counsel of God, perhaps in a way as MLD sees it, preach Christ – grow Christ in us? and isn’t that the goal? in these days (dispensation 🙂 ) do we want the light of the gospel bouncing off of us or shining out from what is inside us?

  15. Em says:

    hadn’t read the thread when i posted @14 – i wasn’t trying to enter into the ongoing conversation preceding – don’t want someone following the thread to try to figure out how my thot relates – if it does, it’s accidental 🙂

  16. WenatcheeTheHatchet says:

    MLD, ironic you posted the comment connected to Rick Warren, because I just published a post about how when it comes to, say, writing a watchblog, you don’t even bother starting into it unless you are willing to reconcile yourself to the reality that abject failure is inevitable.

  17. Surfer51 says:

    Gee MLD been walking since 1967 here…
    Just sayin.

  18. Steve Wright says:

    MLD, my bad. I did not know you had year one yet as a pastor. Which of course was what I was talking about.

    The first pastoral ministry I ever had was leading Sunday worship services for Alzheimer patients. I’ll never forget that very first week, having no idea what I was walking into.

    And I stayed there for the next six years.

    But we went this round earlier in the week after your crack I ought to resign for not preaching the way you think. We each know the settings for our ministries, and the audiences and the need. May yours be blessed.

  19. “But we went this round earlier in the week after your crack I ought to resign for not preaching the way you think.”

    Not quite my comment – What I suggested was that if you were not going to preach about Jesus you should just stay home on Sundays.

  20. Back to my comments at 7. 8. & 9; I do find this to be an issue and one worth discussing. The OT must be read differently than how a Jew or Muslim would read it. When read and taught by a Christian, the entire message must be taught from a completely different view than the message a Jew or Muslim would receive. Sadly this is not the case in many Christian communities.

    I look at it this way – an old sage is telling the birth story of Jesus (this works just as easily with the Easter story) and he interrupts himself at the ending (much like the Hebrews writer did when discussing Melchizedek), and says, “let me tell you how we got here.”

    And he tells the OT story — as the background to the plot – and the plot is nothing else but Jesus. The Christian’s reading of the OT should be as much to hear the story of Jesus as you would search the NT – what a Jew or Muslim gets will not be the same.

  21. I know we will be singing this today during the divine service – as we worship and commune with all saints of all time (which we actually do every Sunday, but do so as a commemoration of All Saints Day.)

    A gathering of the Church Triumphant and the Church Militant

  22. Jean says:

    Beautiful performance of a wonderful hymn.

  23. Surfer51 says:

    Suta is the true story of a young Indian evangelist who returned to a village to share Christ after radical Hindus warned him to stay away.

    In this dramatic video reenactment, you will witness the miraculous transformation of a man who tried to kill Suta.

  24. Good day at and as the Church today. Observation of All Saints Day was concluded by the naming of each that gained heaven this year – each name followed by the ringing of the bell.

    Taught my class today Matt 12. Began in v.22 with the intention to complete v.50 – we didn’t get any further than v.32 – got hung up on the blasphemy of the holy spirit. I got 15 min in and then the class took control for the next 55 min. It was great — most stayed Lutheran but several were coming from a hard core Calvinist thought line while some others were down right Arminian. 🙂 — great and wonderful discussion.

    Finally, I hosted the 2 hour quarterly members meeting. Not as much fun as the blasphemy discussion, but we made it through.

  25. Cool video – that’s the way I went from being Jewish to becoming one of the chosen people. 🙂

  26. Jonnyb says:

    MLD I like that naming of those who graduated to heaven and the ringing of the bell.

    I would have enjoyed that wonderful tradition,

    Structure like that has got to be good for all of us. Rooted in truth and reality.

    People do well when there is structure. I know I do.

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