Monday, July 25, 2005

Five elements to revival

Peter at Stronger Church writes on the need for revival in North American evangelicalism. Peter lists five things needed for that revival, including remembering to follow the work of the Spirit, being faithful to Scripture, having a great commitment to the local church, praying, reproving and preaching the gospel more clearly. Here's what he has to say about preaching:

We've obscured the meaning of justification by faith by all sorts of nonbiblical terms from "invite Jesus into your life" and "surrender to Christ" to (for children) "ask Jesus to be your special friend." Are we smarter than the Spirit? Are we more clever, more articulate, better able to understand how to get through to people? We need to repent of false representations of the Gospel. And if you think I am being overly technical, survey your people and find out how many of them believe they are saved because of what they said, prayed, did (going forward). I read on someone's blog yesterday . . . about a woman who would bribe children with candy so that they would pray the sinner's prayer, and thereby be "saved." What a horrible, horrible thing to do. The Gospel is the power of God for salvation. Let's explain it clearly and accurately. It is possible to do both.

Here's a side note. Since starting to blog I've become more careful in how I cast descriptions of "the church." Despite my natural US-oriented parochialism, it occurs to me that readers from UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa are not necessarily dealing with the same issues--thus the qualification of North American church (still, those in Estados Unidos Mexicanos might take issue with my somewhat limited use of North American).


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