Missional Monday: Should Evangelism Happen Only in the Church?

As I argued at the WSC faculty conference “Missional and Reformed” the Reformed Churches have a sense of “mission.” We haven’t always been faithful to it and the Reformed understanding of the church’s mission is not that of the “missional” movement, especially . . . Continue reading →

One Reason Why Unbelievers Don’t Want to Talk to Us

Mark Vander Pol recently pointed us to a wiki page titled, “How to Avoid Uncomfortable Conversations About Religion.” This page is useful on a variety of levels. On the most common level, some people are pests and it offers some good advice for dealing . . . Continue reading →

Heidelberg 86: Why Good Works? (4)

Evangelism properly is what the minister does in the pulpit when he proclaims the gospel to the world but each of us as Christians is a witness or gives witness to the faith (the objective facts of redemptive history and the basic truths of Scripture summarized in the creeds) and to our faith, i.e., to our personal appropriation of Christ by grace alone, through faith alone. Continue reading →

Are Denominations A Scandal?

Comes the question, Has the splintering of the Protestant church into thousands of denominations become a hindrance to our witness to the world? What can we do? This is an important question that we may not dismiss. Our Lord warned the visible . . . Continue reading →

Talking With Unbelievers: Conversation Not Conversion

“Reformed evangelism.” I used to think this was an oxymoron, that Arminians ask people to choose, and that Calvinists let the Arminians do the work of the evangelists. I thought that the Calvinists would teach converts the doctrines of the faith once . . . Continue reading →

Some Reasons Why Visitors Do Not Stay And What To Do About It

Presbyterian and Reformed congregations occupy an odd space in American Christianity. We do not really belong to American Christianity in significant ways. Our roots are not in the nineteenth-century revivals nor even in the eighteenth-century revivals. We are no part of the . . . Continue reading →

Seeker, Franchise, Or Reforming: Moving Beyond Some Current Models In Reformed Church Planting To Recover The Whole Mission

The need is great, the mission is great but our God is greater and his grace is greater than all our sin and weakness. Pray for the harvest. Organize for the mission (to plant churches) and ask yourself where your congregation falls in the seeker — franchise — reforming continuum: is there a passion for the whole mission? Continue reading →

The Next Church-Growth Fad: Big Data

One of the several quiet revolutions introduced into American life by the two Obama Administrations was the use of “Big Data” to target voters. To that point no campaign had harnessed the power of the internet the way the Obama campaign had. . . . Continue reading →

On The Limits Of Winsomeness

And I started to recognize another danger to this approach: If we assume that winsomeness will gain a favorable hearing, when Christians consistently receive heated pushback, we will be tempted to think our convictions are the problem. If winsomeness is met with . . . Continue reading →

Post-Christian Sex

There is a remarkable article on Insider.com which features a series of comments from young people who belong to “Generation Z.” Sometimes described as “Zoomers,” GenZ are those who were born after 1996. The article purports to reflect the fears of Generation . . . Continue reading →