Episode 151: Does it really mean that? Rev 3:20

– Again, the place to start is the context, which in this case is the letter to Laodicea in Revelation 3:14-22.
– The context indicates that the letter is written to believers who need to be called back to meaningful fellowship with Christ; therefore, this is not an evangelistic text.
– There are plenty of evangelistic texts we could use to press people to obey the gospel (Acts 2, 17; 2 Cor 5-6)

Episode 150: How do I counsel my daughter who tends to be “boy-crazy”?

Episode Highlights:
1. This issue provides a wonderful opportunity for discipleship within the home.
2. There is a time to be “boy-crazy.” That time is within a God-honoring, heterosexual, monogamous marriage relationship.
3. The desire for an intimate relationship is a gift, but it is a means to enjoy Christ more and not an end in itself.
4. A single person should be zealous for the things of God, namely how he/she can grow in the likeness of Jesus. (1 Corinthians 7:34)
5. We all must prioritize treasuring Christ above all else.
6. Biblical counseling may be necessary to address specific variables and receive individualized applications steps.

Episode 149: How do I build trust after betrayal?

Episode Highlights:
– Episodes 140-142 on forgiveness may also be helpful.
– Trust may not be advisable, depending upon what we mean by trust.
– The offended spouse should press into the bitterness issue by meditating on gospel themes.
– Looking to the Lord for ultimate fulfillment will prepare you both to love well and to deal with hurt.

Episode 147: Slow to listen, quick to speak?

Episode Highlights:
– The admonition to be quick to hear and slow to speak comes from James 1:19-20.
– Important principles pertaining to communication come from Proverbs 18:13, 17. We should be eager to have all the information we can get before seeking to resolve a situation. That means listening intently.
– An important diagnostic question: What am I thinking about when the other person is talking–what they are saying or how I want to respond?
– Another important diagnostic question: How often am I persuaded by the other person’s perspective?

Episode 146: Should churches close for the virus?

Episode Highlights:
– We should be gracious regarding others’ convictions.
– Heb 10:24-25 regarding not neglecting the gathering of the saints, likely has in view those who for selfish or immature reasons do not engage in meaningful relationships with other believers.
– We should not view government guidelines as anti-Christian persecution, but measures intended to preserve life, which we should champion.
– Our consciences should not bother us as long as we are worshipping via livestream in our homes and engaging with one another for the purpose of encouragement and edification.
– Committed believers know this is temporary and can’t wait to get back to church.

Episode 145: Hand-raising in worship?

Episode Highlights:
– The Bible both depicts and commands lifting our hands to the Lord in prayer and worship. (Psa 63:4; 134:2; 1 Tim 2:8)
– Our discomfort with this expression of worship is likely more cultural than biblical.
– Those who want to raise their hands should do so, unconcerned about any biblical expression of worship being a distraction to others.
– We should all give grace to the consciences of others around us on this issue.

Episode 144: Does it matter how our bodies are treated when we die?

Episode Highlights
– The Bible indicates that it is a blessing for one’s remains to be well cared for. (Gen 49:29, Exo 13:19)
– The Bible indicates that it is a curse to have one’s remains dishonored in any way. (Jer 16:4; 1 Kings 21:19, 23)
– The human body has been bestowed with dignity by God. (2 Cor 5:4; Phil 3:21; 1 Cor 6:13)
– Historically, the burning of remains has been associated not with Christian practice, but with paganism.

Episode 143: What should do if I know that my friend’s child is involved in sinful activity?

Episode Highlights:
– The Bible clearly teaches about the destructive power of sin (Rom 6:23; 1 Peter 2:11, 5:8)
– NT passages giving instruction about how to help people in sin present a principle we might call “escalating confrontation.” (Matt 18:15-18; 1 Cor 5)
– To not escalate the confrontation by bringing the parents into the circle would be unloving and would allow sin to continue to have its way with the child.

Episode 142: Taking up an offense? Part 3

Episode Highlights:
– There is no biblical category for taking up an offense in the sense that the offender is required to ask my forgiveness for sinning against my friend or loved on.
– There is nothing wrong with being angry/offended by another sinning against my loved one…as long as I obey Eph 4:26-27 and put that anger away in a timely manner.
– Our impulse as believers should be the pursuit of reconciliation (Matt 5:23-24; 18:15; Phil 4:2-3)