Question: Problems with Passion 2013

philskiiiii asked you:

What’s your opinion on blogs speaking on the “Problems at Passion 2013”? Would love to gain some insight from you.

I haven’t read those blogs — and I won’t waste my time on them. 

I’m aware you’re asking me out of curiosity so this is not to get at you, but please allow me the grace to go on a (pointless) rant here.

On a long enough timeline, anyone can complain about anything for any reason.

Maybe some of these blogs have legitimate concerns, but a conference like Passion is the very last thing that anyone should complain about, ever.

Should we have discernment about certain events like these?  Sure.  Should we understand what Christian conferences can and cannot do?  Yes.  Should we be careful about our doctrine and guard ourselves against emotionalism and big stages?  Of course.

But good folks like Louie Giglio have poured out their heart and sweat and blood to reach a younger generation with the Gospel — and I can guarantee that he and everyone else involved has contributed more for Jesus than any of these “Christian bloggers” will do in a lifetime.

I think we can afford a little grace for some secondary disagreements.

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How Jefferson Bethke Showed Me I Was A Jerk

About a year ago, I blasted a dude named Jefferson Bethke who made a video called “Why I Hate Religion But Love Jesus,” which currently has over 23 million views and attracted all kinds of criticism and praise — and I was one of the guys who hated on him.

I left a mean comment on YouTube, went wild about it on my blog, and accused him of “thin doctrine” and a “poor choice of words” about the Christian faith.

Only a couple weeks later, I came to my senses and snapped out of it with a semi-apology.

I don’t know Mr. Bethke or anything about his faith and life — but in my arrogant selfishness and a subconscious attempt to piggyback off his success, I called him out on stupid secondary nitpicks that only made me look like an insecure moron.

Plainly speaking, I looked like an ass.

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Question: Why Is Jesus Right And Others Wrong?

tiedtoskies asked:

Hi, I’m a growing Christian and I’ve recently been doing research and gathering info to clarify my faith. I was wondering if you could answer some questions. 1) What is the basis of your faith? 2) How do you support the historical legitimacy of the Bible & New Testament as the true and sacred word of God? 3) How are other religions founded on false doctrine? Thank you so much!

Great questions, but please forgive me if I reply with unorthodox answers.  Also, I’m well aware that a “secular” or “liberal” worldview will have plenty of counter-ammo for anything I say here — the Bible itself says Christianity will look like foolishness to the untransformed heart — but apart from writing a monster-sized textbook, these are some basic strands to consider.

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Why I’m No Longer Self-Identifying As A “Reformed Calvinist”

I love my Reformed Calvinist brothers and sisters, but I can no longer claim to be a “Reformed Calvinist.”  I have removed it from my About section.

I have been attacked by only three groups of people: militant atheists, a handful of fanatics from Steven Furtick’s church, and Reformed Calvinists.  So basically non-Christians, false Christians, and Super Christians.  And the worst of these attacks were from — you guessed it — Reformed Calvinists.

I can take persecution from the frontlines.  I’d gladly take a bullet or be tortured to death for Jesus or for my fellow friend.  I can handle discouragement and perversity in the world.  But what I cannot understand is when those who claim to love Jesus destroy others who love Jesus.

This is not a theology issue, but rather a love issue.  The ivory tower of Neo-Calvinism has reached so high, I’m not sure what the point is anymore.  Calvinist bloggers only stimulate other Calvinist bloggers.  Neo-Calvinism has become the ghetto of the ghetto of the Christian subculture.

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Question: Walking On Spiritual Eggshells

Anonymous asked:
Thanks for posting that “You Are Loved” post. I listen to a lot of Reformed Theology (which I like) and theologians are always talking about God’s perfectness, his holy wrath, our total depravity, etc… (all of which I agree with). That I very often forget he loves me. In my spiritual walk I tend to walk on eggshells and not try to do anything that will provoke God’s righteous wrath on me. He feels very distant and unapproachable sometimes. I always have to remind myself “God loves me.”

Thank you for your kind message.  You’re referring to this (or this).

May I stretch you a bit here? If you’re always listening to teaching that’s unbalancing your view of God — and God never wants you to be on eggshells like that — then it’s possible that 1) you’re seeking self-punishment or self-loathing, which says a lot about your mindframe, or 2) you could consider expanding what you hear about God. 

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I Want To Read My Bible — But How?

You cracked open your journal, busted out your favorite pen, and finally opened your Bible.

Five sentences later, you have no idea what you just read.

Confusion, frustration, resignation: But the pastor made it so easy. It was better when he told it.

And the final excuse: At least I tried.

It’s happened to all of us, from rookies to veterans, when we catch the excitement of digging into Scripture and come out cold. Most of us will conclude the Bible is too hard, that we’re not mature enough, that we need to be spoon-fed, that something’s wrong with me, that we’ll try it again later. And with each pass at reading, we grow more bewildered.

Every pastor with the best of intentions is yelling at you to read your Bible, but they forget to tell you how.

Of course the simplest way would be to turn to Genesis and just rip right through it. But there’s absolutely nothing wrong with a little help in reading Scripture. If you genuinely want to read the Bible but have had some false starts, here are some ways to dig into the Greatest Truth in the universe.

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