God wants us to be watchful people. The Bible bleeds with cautionary words that are intended to widen our spiritual eyes so that we pay careful attention to the condition of our hearts.
Are they right? Is my mere experience of same-sex attraction a sin? Is it impossible for me to please God as long as these feelings persist?
I've noticed that some Christians tend to minimize the role of the mind in the life of faith. I understand that these folks want to avoid "over-intellectualizing" walking with God and point people instead to the supernatural power available to them in the person of the Holy Spirit.
"But I am the church!" — I would bet we've all heard this once or twice.
The Jesus of nominal Christianity and my own wishful thinking would never utter the words in this text.
Believe it or not, it really is possible to differ on non-essential matters without drawing blood!
Oh, Calvinism — I don't know if any doctrinal system has ignited more faith-feuds than this. Relationships have been fractured and churches have been split because believing men and women have allowed differing perspectives of God's sovereignty to arouse the vilest parts of their sinful natures.
Satan knows he will be ultimately defeated. However, as every Christian is experientially aware, this knowledge has not deterred him from his malicious endeavors.
"We are more sinful and flawed in ourselves than we ever dared believe, yet at the very same time we are more loved and accepted in Jesus Christ than we ever dared hope." – Tim Keller
I didn't know diddlysquat when I became a Christian. I had attended church sporadically during my childhood, but I paid no attention to the then-to-me boring verbiage that poured forth from the pulpit.
I assume most of you are semi-familiar with drama surrounding Jen Hatmaker. Last week, "Religion News Service" published an interview they conducted with her in which she "came out" in support of same-sex relationships.
I can't tell you how many theologicalish books I have started and never finished (almost every one I own — don't judge). Recently, though, I got my hands on one I couldn't put down. Andrew Murray's Abide in Christ is a treasure chest full of spiritually-revitalizing wisdom.
I am convinced that sin takes its most vigorous and incapacitating form as it festers in secrecy. When a Christian shields his sins from others and outwardly portrays himself to be more whole and stable than he truly is — this Christian is in the direst of predicaments.
Church discipline tends to get a bad rap. Pastors and congregations that practice it or even move toward practicing it are often vilified as unloving, "religious" posers who misrepresent the tender and compassionate Christ.
Every person reading this article has had trouble in their life, does have trouble in their life, and will have trouble in their life. Though the intensity of it varies from season to season, difficulty, unfortunately, is an inescapable aspect of living in a cursed world.
I think most Christians know that comparison is a poisonous practice. Measuring your gifts, life circumstances, and callings against those of another believer always leeches away at personal contentment and fractures Christian fellowship. Yet, even still, the vast majority of us are chronic measurers.
I have two spiritual heroes, and neither of them have theological degrees. They haven't written any books, nor do they have huge social media followings (or even Twitter accounts, for that matter).
A close relative once told me, "Matt, you've always been a worrier. Even when you were a child — the one time in life when you shouldn't have a care in the world — you always seemed on edge or troubled about something. I have never been able to wrap my mind around it!"
I believe that it is in my best interest to be holy as God is holy (1 Peter 1:16). I understand that my peace will become steadier and my joy sturdier as I grow into the Christ-like character that God has predestined me to possess (Romans 8:29).
"When will it end?" This question pours endlessly into my email inbox. Struggling saints, wearied by the constant, haunting whispers of their sinful nature, long to know how much longer they must fight before the evil thing is beaten into lifeless silence.
Social media. Podcasts. Live Stream Video. Blogs. In the online connectedness of 2016, digital means like these are well-trodden roads of sharing, exchanging, and gathering information—even eternal information.
Of all the things the Christian faith beckons us to embrace, the love of God should be easiest, shouldn't it?
God has a longstanding habit of calling those he loves into difficult situations. He called Abraham to leave his home and wander around in foreign lands among strangers who, as far as he knew, might kill him on sight.
Evangelical Christianity has its warts and weaknesses. But if there is anything we've got going for us, it's that we strive to keep our collective conscience alive to the urgency and importance of the Great Commission.
I don't know if there is a subtler foe of the gospel-oriented life than unholy discontentment. I throw in that "unholy" qualifier because there are times when God stirs up discontentment in our hearts.