John McKinley

Psychology of Ministry

By John McKinley Feb. 11, 2015 9:00 a.m. Church Life, Ministry and Leadership, Spiritual Formation, Theology

Michael Wilkins recommended these axioms to me. It has taken me several years to figure out and understand what they mean. They have worked like seeds for me. I’m sure he would elaborate on them differently (and better) than I’m doing here. But this is what I see in them ...

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The Difference of One Word

By John McKinley Jan. 21, 2015 9:00 a.m. Biblical Exposition, New Testament, Spiritual Formation, Theology

The Christian belief system is consistent and coherent. This shows in the way that adjustments in one concept of the system often require modifications in other aspects. Increased clarity about one topic elucidates other topics. The interdependence of my beliefs was again displayed when I came across a common mistranslation of a single word in Luke’s gospel. Once I had been persuaded that the prevailing translation was misleading, I experienced shifts in the ways I view and relate to God, and how I pray and think about God’s involvement in daily life. These implications of a single word have been strong reverberations that I am grateful to experience ...

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Religious Language and Everyday Discourse

By John McKinley Sep. 2, 2014 9:15 a.m. Church Life, Culture, Evangelism, Ministry and Leadership, Spiritual Formation, Theology

Occasionally I find myself in a conversation with a non-Christian friend. Sometimes, I have to pay close attention to the language I use if the talk turns to things related to God and ultimate reality. I do the same when I talk to my children about Bible things. I want to be understood, but the normal Christian terms are a foreign language to many people, Christians included. The terms are difficult to use when they don’t communicate.

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Remembering Heaven

By John McKinley May. 13, 2014 9:00 a.m. New Testament, Theology

For whatever reasons in my experiences and personality, I have often looked forward in life to a better situation: I’ll be able to drive, I’ll be finished with high school, I’ll have a job, I’ll be married, I’ll live in my own home, etc. I find myself sometimes weary of the present because of problems that I have to face today, and I sometimes wish I were already ahead in tomorrow. Not least does this occur for my desire to be in Heaven ...

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The Meaning of "Head," Part One

By John McKinley Apr. 14, 2014 9:00 a.m. Church Life, Culture, Marriage and Family, Ministry and Leadership, New Testament, Theology

I’ve begun reading into the topic of women and men in ministry. I noticed immediately that the concept of “head” stands out in the debate between egalitarian and complementarian interpretations. As a metaphor, the concepts and specific applications intended by Paul can be elusive. For help, I turned to an expert on the subject, my colleague, Dr. Michelle Lee-Barnewall. Below are her explanations of four questions as part of beginning to explore the meaning of “headship.”

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Christian Theological Slogans

By John McKinley Mar. 11, 2014 9:00 a.m. Church Life, Theology

I occasionally hear students repeat a slogan in class when they hear me say something that calls the slogan into question, or that directly contradicts a slogan. This is a shock for the students. The slogans are an oral tradition circulating in evangelical churches, a weak catechism of some of our most important beliefs.

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Tunneling through the Barriers to Prayer

By John McKinley Feb. 13, 2014 9:00 a.m. Spiritual Formation

Everyone knows we should pray more than we do, that prayer is really important, and that any hero of the faith has had prayer as a massive ingredient of their life. Even Jesus had to pray. After reading through Donald Bloesch’s The Struggle of Prayer, I have noticed five barriers to prayer in my life, and some ways of tunneling through or around them.

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