And that is where the heaven tourists finally mesh, not just with each other, but with the larger culture. We seem to be moving inexorably from a society where organized religion dominates issues of morality—and mortality—but not to the secular promised land of reason. Rather, we are orienting ourselves to a more personal spirituality, at once vague and autonomous. Ordinary sinners increasingly don’t believe that they deserve judgment, let alone hell. Theists and atheists alike dispute any earthly authority’s right to judge, and both feel NDEs give them reason to hope for something beyond the grave. And many believers confidently expect that God isn’t judgmental either.
In Ephesians 4:29, Paul mentions two kinds of speech: that which builds up and that which pulls down. This verse and the surrounding passage show us ten ways that we can handle conflict well—10 ways to fight like a Christian.
This question has two aspects: first, does your congregation regularly discuss things as a congregation? Or are all important discussions of the congregation’s life done by leaders behind closed doors and in gossip circles amongst the members? Second, are you capable of listening to each other? Is the goal of most communication in your congregation to understand each other or to get things done? If the latter characterizes the communication of your congregation, then you probably have damaged your ability to do the former. Finally, do you have the spiritual maturity to accept people who disagree?
If our positions are God delivered, great is the future to behold. If, on the other hand, our drive is due to man’s burr under his own preferential saddle, we once again swallowed yet another camel while unaware of the gnatism embedded in our own muddled version of spiritual accuracy.
These sorts of changes may have only minor effects on people who watch this series and know little about the Bible. Many will think, “Oh! So that’s where that comes from! David spoke Psalm 23 right before he killed Goliath!’” Ideally, this will compel people to read the Bible for themselves. But I suspect that it will mislead and confuse people regarding details.
More generally, we have a problem with more than just Romans 13:7, I Corinthians 6:20, and other passages in which timi connects wealth and merit. Any time we read “honor” for timi, we are missing part of the message, because the very notion of “honor” for us is not what it was for the Greeks. Greek “honor” included an element of finance. Similarly, whenever we read “price” for timi, we are missing the inherent connection to honor and glory.
My greatest need isn’t a public relations manager; it’s a Redeemer. And real-life, everyday friends—the ones aware of both my sin and the gospel’s power—will regularly remind me of this need.
Long-distance and digital friendships, no matter how wonderful they are, cannot gain full access into our souls. Seeing a friend’s compassionate eyes, holding her hand, and kneeling together in prayer are evidences of God’s tangible nearness in the war against sin.
The traditional kind of corporate meeting starts with a presentation. Somebody gets up in front of the room and presents with a powerpoint presentation, some type of slide show. In our view you get very little information, you get bullet points. This is easy for the presenter, but difficult for the audience. And so instead, all of our meetings are structured around a 6 page narrative memo.
The woman disrupted the flight in part by belting out Whitney Houston songs. And based on the video posted by a passenger on the flight, the woman won’t be getting a golden ticket onto the American Idol competition anytime soon.