God Exposed Conference

Don’t miss the God Exposed Conference, a pastors conference focusing on expositional preaching.  This is a much needed conference which was co-sponsored by 9Marks ministry and Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary.

To begin with, Dan Akin’s message is one of those defining messages that set the standard for what preaching is meant to be.  Akin looks at the preacher in Ecclesiastes.  He begins his message by stating the phrase, ‘The most important thing about any message is what you say, but how you say it has never been more important.’  Akin comes down hard (helpfully so) on the need for preaching to engage and hold interest in the listener. He even goes so far to say that it is a sin for a preacher to be boring. This is a message you will want to listen to twice (which I did).

Mark Dever opens the conference with a good anticipatory message and concludes it with a fantastic message.  In fact, all of the speakers made very thoughtful and engaging contributions to the conference.

One of the unique qualities of this conference is something that I first heard at T4G, and that is that immediately after the message all the speakers gather to discuss the message–a very helpful practice.

God Exposed is a pastors conference on expositional preaching that

  • Session 1: Mark Dever – “The Power of God’s Word” (Mark 4:26-34)
  • Session 2: Daniel L. Akin – “The Preaching on Preaching” (Eccl. 12:9-14)
  • Session 3: Michael McKinley – “The Centrality of the Word” (Luke 10:38-42)
  • Session 4: CJ Mahaney – “Expository Faithfulness” (2 Timothy 4:1-5)
  • Session 5: Thabiti Anyabwile – “Will It Preach? Exposition in Non-White Contexts”
  • Session 6: Mark Dever – “Expositional Preaching: A Defense and Charge”

Sessions 1 – 4 >>>

Sessions 5 – 6 >>>

God Exposed Conference >>>

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9 Marks interview and Christian Rap

Mark Dever interviews two Christian rap artists about their music, craft and ministry: Shai Linne and Curtis Allen, “The Voice”.

I first heard about Shai Linne from a student at a college retreat I recently spoke at, and to be very honest, I didn’t give the student who told me much consideration.  I came home, looked up Shai Linne on the Internet, and within a few minutes I was hooked.  Shai has more theology in one song than most pastors have in in a years worth of preaching.  When was the last time you heard a contemporary Christian song deal with penal substitutionary atonement?

Curtis Allen is in seminary and preparing for the pastorate. Shai Linne is active in his Sovereign Grace church and is considering seminary.

9 Marks interview on Christian Rap >>>

Shai Linne’s MySpace page >>>

Shai Linne’s blog Lyrical Theology >>>

Lampmode Music Label >>>

Curtis Allen (the Voice) MySpace page >>>

Lessons Learned from Three Decades of Leading

C. J. Mahaney, Jeff Purswell and Bob Kauflin gather for a lengthy discussion reflecting on their many years of ministry together at Covenant Life and Sovereign Grace.

There is one excellent observation I will leave you with: The boys were talking about preparation for worship, and C.J. said, the Holy Spirit is not thwarted by planning or preparation.  Some believe the Spirit works spontaneously, but the Holy Spirit is more at work when we are prepared than when we are not.

Lessons Learned >>>

New Testament Theology

Dr. Thomas Schreiner joins the lads at Christ the Center to discuss his new book New Testament Theology: Magnifying God in Christ.

Schreiner was greatly influenced by Ladd’s New Testament Theology, and his book seeks to “open windows” on important New Testament theological concepts.  Schreiner focuses a great deal on typology and the New Testament being a fulfillment of many Old Testament themes, promises and covenants.

If you’re unfamiliar with typology, this is a good introduction to it’s importance as the New Testament relates to the Old.  Fascinating discussion.

Westminster Seminary bookstore has a 46 page preview of Schreiner’s book.

New Testament Theology >>>

Richard Phillips: The Masculine Mandate

Richard Phillips discusses his excellent new book The Masculine Mandate with the team at Christ the Center. Phillips was motivated to write this book after reading Wild at Heart, the horrid, yet popular book by John Eldredge.  Phillips observes that Eldredge got the primary text for men right, but took a wild interpretation that isn’t at all biblical.

Phillips identifies masculinity as being both working and keeping (nurturing), which emerge from the responsibilities he had in the garden of Eden.  It’s not common to consider man as a nurturer, but that is a major part of what it means to be a man.

Phillips also suggests that many men are consumed with “man idols” that appear to be masculine, but need to be put in their place because they hinder the true responsibilities of men.  He suggests many young men need to be admonished to grow up, put away their video games and begin to behave responsibility, and prepare themselves for marriage.

One of the most insightful comments was that the feminism movement in the church has largely been fueled by the movement of masculine abdication. Men have forgotten what it means to be a man in the church, and in the home, and women have responded with feminism.

This discussion is very invigorating, and at the end you will want to have this book ordered, as I did.

The Masculine Mandate >>>

An Evening of Eschatology

John Piper hosted a very exciting roundtable discussion with three of his friends looking at some issues of eschatology.  Those friends are Doug Wilson, Sam Storms, and Jim Hamilton, and each one represents one of three escatalogical viewpoints: Postmillenialism, Amillenialism and Premillenialism respectively.

This discussion will stretch your mind, if you are not familiar with the variety of millenial views.   Far from being a discouraging discussion, this is a very helpful and encouraging discussion, and shed light on the views that I personally do not hold.  We should be willing to delve into these deep waters rather than to avoid them due to the confusion that surrounds them.

An Evening of Eschatology >>>

The Doctrine of Assurance

Burk Parsons joins the Christ the Center team to discusse two books which he recently edited, Assured by God; Living in the Fullness of God’s Grace, and John Calvin; A Heart for Devotion, Doctrine and Doxology.

Assurance is a doctrine that is rarely taught in the church today, and is surrounded by a lot of confusion.  In this discussion Burk talks about the ways in which assurance is hindered, and even robbed from God’s people, by poor theology.

Burk’s motivation for writing a book on John Calvin was to introduce Calvin to the lay person, combining his person with his theology, in order to strip away the unfortunate caricatures and distortions that have clouded Calvin.

All in all a very enjoyable and informative discussion.

The Doctrine of Assurance >>>

Atheist Delusions

In our culture’s rising interest with the new atheist voices, we have seen a solid Christian response, both philosophically and scientifically.  Many of the popular level atheists have lost a lot of credibility, even among fellow atheists.  David Bentley Hart addresses this with a lament in his book Atheist Delusions:

We used to produce better atheists, atheists who had a better arsenal of arguments to make. But perhaps…it’s sort of the slap-dash way in which they approach the topic that has made them so marketable.

Hart observes that it’s not the arguments or wisdom of these men that sells their books, but the salacious and rabid manner that they pour upon Christianity.

Inteview with Dr. Hart >>>