The Courage to Confess Christ

Let us all pray daily for faith and courage to confess Christ before all men. Of sin, or worldliness, or unbelief, we may well be ashamed. We ought never to be ashamed of Him who died for us on the cross. In spite of laughter, mockery, and hard words, let us boldly avow that we serve Christ. Better a thousand times confess Christ now, and be despised by man, than be disowned by Christ before His Father in the day of judgment.

—J.C. Ryle
Expository Thoughts on the Gospels: Mark

Via: J.C. Ryle Quotes

Dust of the Middle East to the Glory of Heaven

Dr. Sproul was recently approached by Dr. Michael Youssef about participating on a satellite network broadcasting into the Arabic speaking world. Al Malakoot Sat (Kingdom Sat) will officially launch on March 2, 2009.

Ligonier along with several other ministries are sending video material to be translated and sub-titled into Arabic and we will be broadcasting several times a day, Lord willing. The broadcast footprint is astounding: 72 countries with a potential coverage of 121 million homes. We will begin by airing our well known “Dust to Glory” series, an overview of the Bible, with other of RC’s popular teaching series to follow later in the year.

There is a wonderful team of translators and administrators that have been assembled to undertake this mission work. Maged Atalla, Al Malakoot’s Executive Director, is a former producer for Trans World Radio, is fluent in 4 languages and has extensive knowledge of the classical Arabic language.

Response to the daily broadcast of “Dust to Glory” will be handled by phone centers in Paris, Amman, Minia (Egpyt) as well as with coordinators in Casablanca and Algiers. We will be providing additional resources, audio and Ligonier literature in Arabic to continue the theological education of those who call in from around the Middle East.

Websites have been set up here http://www.kingdomsat.com and here http://www.malakootsat.com for Arabic, English, and French languages. They will contain more daily information as the launch date arrives.

The potential for this new effort is exciting and overwhelming. We are privileged to be a part of spreading of the Gospel into this area of the world that so desperately needs Truth. As this is not an inexpensive undertaking, we are grateful for those who support us financially.

Renewing Your Mind on Kingdom Sat throughout the Middle East … until the whole world hears the message of God’s great salvation.

Via: Ligonier Ministries Blog

Self-Proclaimed or Called?

This is an excerpt from a terrific article by Terry Delaney over at the Said at Southern weblog:

We are more than happy to flex our theological brain power in a debate, but what about actually living  what we believe? I am the first to admit that I am a hypocrite in that I do not always practice what I preach, but that does not excuse me from behaving in a manner worthy of my calling. The same is probably true for most of us.  How many of us would be found in compliance with the commandment given by Jesus in John 13:34, “just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.” The very next thing Jesus says is that “By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”

As Baptists we could probably learn a thing or two about loving one another.  For example, though there are some that are able to discuss the subject of Calvinsim and agree to disagree, there are many who cannot.  This is antithetical to what Christ taught.  I think we should strive to be called Christians rather than telling everyone that we are a Christian.

I am not saying that we should quit preaching the gospel with our mouths.  This is the means by which God has ordained that His people will come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ (see Romans 10:14-17).  However, if we do not live out our faith in opposition to the world, then can we really preach the gospel effectively?  It is my prayer that we who proclaim Christ with our lips will do so with our lives as well.

Via: Said at Southern

Evangelism’s Must-Have’s

Yesterday, I read something I found convicting in my study on our responsibility in evangelism.  Consider the words of R.B. Kuiper, in his book, God-Centered Evangelism:

1.  One must have a clear understanding of the gospel for the simple reason that vagueness and confusion can neither convey truth nor command respect.

2.  He must have a strong conviction as to the truth of the gospel so that he can say: ‘I believe, and therefore have I spoken’ (2 Cor. 4:13) and ‘I have delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; and that he was buried, and that he rose again the third according to the scriptures’ (1 Cor. 15:3-4).

3.  He must have a lively sense of the supreme importance of the gospel, one’s attitude to it being a matter of life or death, even eternal life or eternal death.

4.  He must himself have experienced the saving power of the gospel so that he can testify: ‘I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day’ (2 Tim. 1:12).

5.  He must have a passion for lost souls which compels him to beseech them as though God were beseeching and to pray them in Christ’s stead: ‘Be ye reconciled to God’ (2 Cor. 5:20).

6.  He must have an overwhelming love for the Saviour, who first loved him, and therefore exclaim:

Were the whole realm of nature mine,
That were a present far too small;
Love so amazing, so divine,
Demands my soul, my life, my all.

Himself being a sinner saved by grace, he ought to proclaim the love of God more eloquently than can the angels.  Such communication of the evangel God is wont to bless and to use.

—R.B. Kuiper
God-Centered Evangelism, 217-18

Via: Timmy Brister

Do People Bore You?

I’m working on a book on the new birth. The final chapter is designed to give encouragements for personal evangelism. I just added a quote by C. S. Lewis that I love. Here’s the whole section to help you move toward people:

Find People Interesting

Be encouraged that simply finding people interesting and caring about them is a beautiful pathway into their heart. Evangelism gets a bad reputation when we are not really interested in people and don’t seem to care about them. People really are interesting. The person you are talking to is an amazing creation of God with a thousand interesting experiences. Remember the words of C. S. Lewis:

It is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods and goddesses, to remember that the dullest and most uninteresting person you talk to may one day be a creature which, if you saw it now, you would strongly be tempted to worship, or else a horror and a corruption such as you now meet, if at all, only in a nightmare. All day long we are, in some degree, helping each other to one or other of these destinations. It is in the light of these overwhelming possibilities, it is with the awe and the circumspection proper to them, that we should conduct all our dealings with one another, all friendships, all loves, all play, all politics. There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. (The Weight of Glory, 14-15)

Yet, most of us don’t think this way. The gods bore us and we return to our video games. Very few people are interested in others. If you really find their story interesting, and care about them, they may open up to you and want to hear your story — Christ’s story.

—John Piper

Via: Desiring God Blog