Now that Christmas is over, we look on toward the quickly approaching new year—2018. As I look back at 2017, I find that my time spent in writing articles has helped me to study, think, read, and wrestle with some good issues that we all deal with as Christians and that some of us deal with as pastors. Writing, like anything else, is a discipline that one has to work on and practice in order to get better. I can see progress through 2017, and I’m grateful for God’s grace in my life.
Thank you for taking time to read the DBG blog each week. What you will see below is a list of the top 10 articles from 2017. If you missed one, you can take time to catch up by reading it below. I hope you have a happy ending to 2017 and a wonderful New Year.
10. Questions to Ask Before Joining a Local Church — Don’t approach church membership too lightly. Think through some of the more practical and theological questions before you become a member.
9. Why Discipleship Works with a Plurality of Elders — Pastors are called to equip the saints for the work of ministry. How can one single pastor disciple the entire church in the most biblical pattern? That’s why when you connect the dots to the calling of a pastor and the government structure of a local church as identified in the pattern of the early church—it’s obvious that a plurality of elders will be far more capable of cultivating a culture of discipleship than a single pastor model.
8. Don’t Skip Sunday School — You may not like the title “Sunday school” but whatever you call it—do it.
7. “I Fear You Will Die and Go to Hell” — In this article, I recount a conversation I had with a man who was trying to pursue a divorce from his wife without any biblical grounds for such a decision. What I told him I pray sticks with him as a reminder of his need to repent.
6. 3 Errors of “Word of Faith” Preaching — “True biblical preaching points people to God’s Word where they will be led to submit to God and His will. We are led to pray as Jesus taught us, and to trust in the supernatural power of our God to accomplish His will.”
5. Please Stop Giving Bad Invitations — In this article, I explain how we as pastors should not manipulate people’s souls in calling for people to follow Christ.
4. 3 Reasons Why You Should Stop Saying “All Sin Is the Same” — Not all sin is the same and there will be some who have a more severe condemnation in hell.
3. Dear Mormon—I Can’t Call You a Brother in Christ — After having lunch with a new friend, he asked me if I could consider him a brother in Christ. Knowing that he’s a Mormon, I had to explain why I can’t call him a brother in Christ.
2. Passion Without Knowledge Is Deadly — Only the second article of 2017 was almost the most popular article of 2017, but beyond the popularity of the article it turned some heads too. Rightly so. We don’t need to further confuse impressionable college students by inviting celebrities to sing a confusing message about the gospel.
1. Please Stop Saying—”God Told Me” — In this article, I addressed the continual problem of our day where people claim to be hearing directly from God rather than directly from God’s Word.