The Faith That Saves (Part 1)

Biblical Meditations, Christian Life, Church Life, The Gospel

Calvinists and nonCalvinists have fought about the origin of saving faith for centuries.  Calvinists insist God grants saving faith to the elect at the moment of conversion.  NonCalvinists insist God has granted everyone the ability to believe the gospel and must be rightly persuaded.  No one has any ability or everyone has some ability.  Important distinctions, to be sure. But […]

Fancy It Forward:
October 27, 2015

Relax, Your Church is a Mess (For Now)

Christian Life, Church Life

If you are a Christian then you love the church because you love what Jesus loves. Jesus died for her (Eph 5.2, 25) and it is Christian to love those for whom Jesus died. But Christ’s bride is one messed-up group of people because you and I are messed-up folk. Jesus did not give himself up […]

Fancy It Forward:
October 15, 2015

Death by Analytics (Why Stats Choke the Life Out of Your Church)

Biblical Meditations, Church Life, Galatians

“but they desire to have you circumcised so that they may boast in your flesh” (Gal 6.13). Baseball has its BABIP (batting average on balls in play).  Basketball has its PER (player efficiency rating).  Football has its AYPA (adjusted yards per attempt). “Analytics” has taken professional sports by storm.  Calculus before coaching.  Algorithms over experience. […]

Fancy It Forward:
August 21, 2015

Baptist Catholicism (What the Altar Call, Sinner’s Prayer & Pope Have in Common)

Baptism, Christian Life, Church Life, Romans, The Gospel

The typical Baptist suffers from Catholiphobia: the fear of all things Catholic. We Baptists often know more about Catholics than Catholicism, which is probably true of any religious tradition.  We tend to define religious traditions by the few people we know who practice them rather that what that tradition has historically confessed. Nevertheless, it doesn’t take […]

Fancy It Forward:
July 9, 2015