Billy Graham and Higher Education

Growing up in North Carolina, one of my grandmothers plunked me down as a child in front of the television for more than one Billy Graham Crusade. My other grandmother had me read a book or two he wrote. Though he was not the means of my own conversion, gospel seeds and the fear of God was sown in my life by hearing and reading him. His life, ministry, and family stories have always fascinated me.

Our theological paths went in different directions. He grew up an Associate Reformed Presbyterian (the motorcade carrying his body stopped in front of his childhood church in Charlotte earlier this week) then turned Baptist; I grew up Baptist and am now a Reformed Presbyterian. Surely, as Iain Murray pointed out in Evangelicalism Divided, Reformed believers have legitimate concerns over some of the theology, methods, and statements Graham made over his lifetime. Yet as tributes such as those by Steven Lawson, Johnathan Master, Al Mohler, and Gene Edward Veith remind us, we should thank the Lord for this preacher who, humble as he was to admit his own flaws, is even being honored by our government.

One other way to admire Graham’s influence is provided below with the guest post by Russ Pulliam. Russ is […]

3GT Episode 74: De(com)pression

Many in the church suffer with depression and the questions it raises. Aren’t Christians always supposed to be happy? So is it sinful to be depressed? Is it always a spiritual problem? Where do you go for help? How do you help someone with it? Ar…

Personal Gospel Mercy

Listen carefully in reformed churches, and you will hear the fear that goes something like the following. If the church becomes involved too deeply in social issues or mercy ministry, the gospel will be lost.

Certainly the last century has shown that mainline churches became derailed as influences such as liberal theology, the social gospel, liberation theology, and feminism sent them careening off course. Yet the answer is not for the church to retreat from social matters and set themselves up as theological fortresses that remain unmoved by the affliction around them. As James asks, “What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works?” (Jam. 2:14) Rather, based on a robust gospel foundation, people in congregations must be encouraged and trained to give their neighbors not only the gospel but their own lives and resources as well.

Amy Carmichael was the oldest of seven children, born in 1867 to a wealthy Presbyterian family in Ireland.  As a young woman, she heard missionary Hudson Taylor give a call to missions. She responded and was commissioned by the Church of England to do mission work in India at the beginning of the twentieth century. As she worked […]

3GT Episode 73: When Two Kingdoms Become One

Why would the 3GTers want to talk about the Democratic primary for the governor’s race in Texas? Because one candidate who is promoting a pro-choice position is an elder in a Reformed church, and other elders in his denomination are calling him t…

One Man’s Sanctification Journey

The following is a guest post by Russell Pulliam, an Indianapolis Star columnist who directs the Pulliam Fellowship summer intern program for the Indianapolis Star and the Arizona Republic. Russ describes personally below the process, tools, and lessons the Lord has taken him though on his own road of sanctification.

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Sanctification seems similar to one of those 500-piece puzzles. How do all the pieces fit together? Perhaps one side of the puzzle represents the disciplines of sanctification, and the other side represents the themes of grace.

Disciplines and Discipleship

In my early years in Christ, 1970s and 1980s, I heard much about good disciplines. Bible study, prayer and memory verses, and meditation were the core. But added to the list were: church and fellowship; witness; good biographies; andearly rising for quiet time, sometimes with physical fitness to get more alert. The list grew longer through some good books: writing in journals; confession and self-examination; solitude. The earliest book was Richard Foster’s Celebration of Discipline, followed by Dallas Willard, The Celebration of Discipline. Later came Donald Whitney with a more reformed framework in Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life.

Here is an odd challenge with these disciplines. I can develop a subtle and unconscious pride, taking […]

3GT Episode 72: Hitting the Pause Button

Kyle’s been cruisin’ again. Did he really say he had been to the Copacabana? Progreso, Mexico? Anyway, it got the guys talking about R&R, vacations, sabbaths, and even sabbaticals.
Questions arise. How do you slow down and disconnect in…

3GT Episode 72: Hitting the Pause Button

Kyle’s been cruisin’ again. Did he really say he had been to the Copacabana? Progreso, Mexico? Anyway, it got the guys talking about R&R, vacations, sabbaths, and even sabbaticals.
Questions arise. How do you slow down and disconnect in…

The Corporate Application of Scripture

Maybe we need a Southern Bible Version (the SBV)?

Or perhaps a Pittsburgh one?

One of the regular reminders I give hermeneutic and homiletical students is that English uses the word “you” for both the singular and plural. So it can be easy to misunderstand many portions of the Bible. For an example, Paul asks the Corinthian church, “Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?” (1 Cor. 3:16) Is the “you” that is used three times in this verse singular or plural? When studying the Bible, it is important to note that both original languages of Hebrew in the Old Testament and Greek in the New make a distinction between the second person singular and plural. In this verse, both the Greek and the context make it clear it is plural as Paul is telling the congregation at Corinth it is God’s temple.

That’s why a Southern Bible version might clarify this issue a bit. Paul’s question would become “Do y’all not know that y’all are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in y’all?” In Pittsburgh where I work, the natives are known for using the word yinz (a shortened form of “you uns”?) like […]

The Corporate Application of Scripture

Maybe we need a Southern Bible Version (the SBV)?

Or perhaps a Pittsburgh one?

One of the regular reminders I give hermeneutic and homiletical students is that English uses the word “you” for both the singular and plural. So it can be easy to misunderstand many portions of the Bible. For an example, Paul asks the Corinthian church, “Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you?” (1 Cor. 3:16) Is the “you” that is used three times in this verse singular or plural? When studying the Bible, it is important to note that both original languages of Hebrew in the Old Testament and Greek in the New make a distinction between the second person singular and plural. In this verse, both the Greek and the context make it clear it is plural as Paul is telling the congregation at Corinth it is God’s temple.

That’s why a Southern Bible version might clarify this issue a bit. Paul’s question would become “Do y’all not know that y’all are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in y’all?” In Pittsburgh where I work, the natives are known for using the word yinz (a shortened form of “you uns”?) like […]

Browse Worthy: Abuse in the Church

The Apostle Peter said, “For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God?” (1 Peter 4:17) As our culture awakens to the problem of sexual abuse, surely the church will be held to even greater account by her Lord. Signs of his judgment have already been seen, as recent years have shown one evangelical leader after another falling because of these sins. As you read the following articles, pray that the Lord would purify and revive His church.

 

My Larry Nassar Testimony Went Viral. But There’s More to the Gospel Than Forgiveness. | Morgan Lee Interview of Rachael Denhollander

After her powerful, Christ-honoring testimony in a courtroom (you can see it here) regarding the sexual abuse she endured as a gymnast by doctor Larry Nassar, who was accused and convicted of abusing scores of girls and women, Rachael Denhollander spoke to Christianity Today of the problem of abuse and its cover-up in the church. Clearly as a lawyer, advocate for the hurting, and lover of Christ and His church, Rachael is determined to see the church exercise justice as well as mercy […]