Posts from August 2011

Walking in the Spirit

By Kenneth Berding Aug. 29, 2011 3:12 p.m. Biblical Exposition, New Testament, Spiritual Formation

I’m thankful and excited to be able to announce the publication of a new (short) book called Walking in the Spirit (published by Crossway).  I am deeply concerned that we learn to live lives empowered by the Holy Spirit—that we learn to “walk” in the reality of his presence and power.  This non-academic book is written especially for people who know that the Holy Spirit is important, but who aren’t quite sure what to do about it.  Walking in the Spirit includes study questions for individuals and groups at the end of each chapter.  Here is a link to the first section of the book if you’d like to read a little:


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Don’t Read the Bible by Itself

By Uche Anizor Aug. 27, 2011 7:58 p.m. Biblical Exposition, Theology, Historical Theology

In the preface to the 1539 Edition of the Institutes, Calvin explains the purpose of the Institutes and in doing so offers good counsel regarding the need for theology in reading Scripture well

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You’re Taking That Out Of Context!

By Joe Hellerman Aug. 26, 2011 3:54 p.m. Biblical Exposition, Ministry and Leadership, New Testament

Scenario #1: A single mom is in a small group with a first-year seminary student. The young man just completed an introductory course in biblical hermeneutics. During the group’s sharing and prayer time, the following interaction unfolds:

MOM: I have been really struggling to make ends meet. But just this week I found a verse that has really given me confidence and peace about my finances: ‘And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus’ (Philippians 4:19).

STUDENT: You might wanna be careful about claiming that verse as a promise for your personal finances. As the context of Philippians indicates, that is a specific promise Paul gave to a local church because of their sacrificial financial contribution to his missionary efforts. It is not a generic promise to be claimed by just any individual Christian struggling with his or her finances. 

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Donkeys in the Biblical World

By Kenneth Way Aug. 23, 2011 10:56 p.m. Biblical Exposition, Old Testament


Donkeys in the Biblical World

My first book is finally available ( )!  It can tell you everything you never knew you needed to know about donkeys in the biblical world.  It's actually quite a technical read since it began long ago as my dissertation project at Hebrew Union College (Cincinnati, OH).  So it may not be the best book for, say, small group Bible studies or local book clubs.  But if you want a dose of ancient Near Eastern and archaeological analysis, then this one is just for you.  

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Teaching Deeper, Part VII

By Kevin Lawson Aug. 23, 2011 1:20 p.m. Biblical Exposition, Christian Education

A few months ago I introduced and explained a “coaching” model for teaching that I believe has greater potential for encouraging deeper, more transformative learning.  Unfortunately, not many of us are teaching in this way and we need to begin changing how we prepare our lessons and how we use our time as we teach our students.  Last month I began to share some ideas for how to begin moving from a “teaching for knowing” to a “teaching for growing” ministry.  This month I will finish up these more specific ideas and give you some more questions for reflection.  Beginning next month I’ll go back and spend more time on issues of how we prepare for our teaching, how we move beyond teaching for knowing in our use of time in the group, and how to develop a longer-term approach to promoting growth through our teaching.  This blog picks up where the last one left off, with six more ideas for teaching more like a coach.

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A Free Bible Resource for Children

By Rob Lister Aug. 23, 2011 12:00 a.m. Biblical Exposition, Christian Education, Church Life, Spiritual Formation

Recently, prior to one of our family trips this summer I stumbled across what looks like a great resource for kids produced by “Faith Comes By Hearing.”  It's been a blessing to our kids, so I thought I'd pass it along.

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Commands Are Like Bricks

By Uche Anizor Aug. 20, 2011 7:54 a.m. Biblical Exposition, Ethics

Speaking about moral codes and laws, Oliver O’Donovan (Resurrection and Moral Order, 2nd ed.) says something helpful about how we use the Bible to make moral decisions. Speaking generally of the relationship between individual moral commands and the overall moral law, he writes first:

The items in a [moral] code stand to the moral law as bricks to a building. Wisdom must involve some comprehension of how the bricks are meant to be put together.

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