Successful Christian Ministry

Success

Today there are many tools and methods used in Christian ministry. Some are very helpful whereas others are very unhelpful. Sadly, many of these are designed to appeal to the desires of people. This method is often referred to as being “Seeker Sensitive”. Obviously we don’t ever want to use methods that are mean to people, but to tailor everyone around people’s desires is unbiblical. The goal of a lot of these methods is to help produce a successful ministry. Many people measure a successful ministry by large numbers. Is this legitimate? Biblically speaking, true success is not determined by large numbers but is determined by faithfulness (cf. and ). Continue reading Successful Christian Ministry

This Book of the Law shall not depart from your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it. For then you will make your way prosperous, and then you will have good success.

Let not steadfast love and faithfulness forsake you;
bind them around your neck;
write them on the tablet of your heart.
So you will find favor and good success
in the sight of God and man.

Wrong ways of reading the Bible

© AZP Worldwide #16661650

I’m a big fan of Graeme Goldsworthy’s writings.  In his book Gospel-Centred Hermeneutics[1] he has a chapter on the wrong ways that we Evangelicals sometimes read the Bible.  It might be a bit hard to hear this, but it’s great food for thought.  We all make these mistakes.  Please don’t read it as finger-pointing (unless the finger is pointed back at me/ us).

#1  The “me-centred” approach.  The text of the Bible ‘speaks to me’.  Not in the sense that I read what it means and apply it to myself.  That is absolutely right and good.  This sort of reading plucks words or phrases right out of their context so that they “speak” to my situation.  The historical background and context are ignored.  Exegesis is a dirty word.  I open the Bible wherever, read a text, and let it mean whatever I want it to mean in an inspirational way for me today.

#2  Literalism.  Not in the sense of reading the Bible according to its literature – there is a right literal reading of the Bible.  This means reading Old Testament prophecy in a literalistic way.  Such a reading doesn’t read it in light of the New Testament and Jesus, but jumps in application straight to us today.  Such a reading would take the book of Joshua and have us declaring jihad, like the Crusades.  Fulfilment in Jesus is ignored in the cause of what is wrongly called a literal reading of the Bible.  But the New Testament reads the Old Testament Christologically (; ): OT prophecy is about Jesus.

#3  Legalism.  A selective reading of laws in the Bible so that some apply rigidly today, and others are Continue reading Wrong ways of reading the Bible

25 And he said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Was it not necessary that the Christ should suffer these things and enter into his glory?” 27 And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.

44 Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” 45 Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures,