Guest Views

CP Blogs do not necessarily reflect the views of The Christian Post. Opinions expressed are solely those of the author(s).

Posted 7/31/14 at 11:38 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices

10 Steps to Help Seekers Find the Lord

Photo: Flickr/onezilla - Creative Commons

By David Murray

Having considered 14 different kinds of seeker and then offered some reminders and questions when dealing with seekers, today I’d like to offer some guidelines for helping seekers find the Lord.

1. Teach the Gospel of God (objective)
Make sure the seeker understands the core of the Gospel

  • Who God is in His three persons.
  • An outline of the history of redemption
  • The person and work of Christ
  • The way of salvation

You need to make sure that they are seeking the right thing/person and not something they have invented. You can’t find what doesn’t exist. FULL POST

Posted 7/31/14 at 11:16 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices

Making Ourselves Learn New Things in Ministry

Notebook computer
Photo: Flickr/Rob DiCaterino - Creative Commons

By Joe McKeever

“It is good for a man to bear the yoke in his youth” (Lamentations 3:27)

When I was in high school, someone taught me to type. Just after college, they taught me to run the teletype and then to work a mimeograph machine. Eventually, someone installed a computer in my office. I said, “Where do you turn it on? It has no on/off switch.”

In the 1990s when teaching (occasionally) at our seminary, I entered the classroom carrying books and a Bible. Everything about the class was hand-written or typed. In recent years, everyone brought laptops into the classroom, and much of the work was paperless, posted on academic websites set up just for this purpose. I graded “papers” without leaving my desk, without taking my eyes off the computer, without lifting a pencil. FULL POST

Posted 7/30/14 at 11:47 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices |

1 comment

What do Angels Look Like?

Photo: Flickr/Tina Rayna - Creative Commons
Angel character in a performance of The Christmas Story.

By S. Michael Houdmann of Got Religion

Question: "What do angels look like?"

Answer: Angels are spirit beings (Hebrews 1:14), so they do not have any essential physical form. But angels do have the ability to appear in human form. When angels appeared to humans in the Bible, they resembled normal males. In Genesis 18:1-19, God and two angels appeared as men and actually ate a meal with Abraham. Angels appear as men many times throughout the Bible (Joshua 5:13-14; Mark 16:5), and they never appear in the likeness of women.

Other times, angels appeared not as humans, but as something other-worldly, and their appearance was terrifying to those who encountered them. Often, the first words from these angels were “do not be afraid,” because extreme fear was such a common reaction. The keepers of Jesus’ tomb became as dead men when they saw the angel of the Lord (Matthew 28:4). The shepherds in the fields in Luke 2 were “sore afraid” when the angel of the Lord appeared and the glory of the Lord shone around them. FULL POST

Posted 7/30/14 at 11:20 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices |

1 comment

10 Things I'd Do Differently if I Weren't a Pastor Today

Photo: Flickr/shizhao - Creative Commons

By Ron Edmondson

I spent most of my adult life outside vocational ministry. I’m amazed at the opportunities God has given me in ministry, but in many ways I am still a newcomer. I have just over a dozen years in this career. It’s challenging in some ways, because I see things differently from some who have only done ministry, but it also gives me a unique perspective from some pastors. I sat “in the pew” far longer than I’ve stood “behind the pulpit”.

One thing my experience has done for me, especially since I’ve become a pastor, is to help me realize how much I didn’t understand about being a pastor. Like the feeling that work is never done. Like feeling you are never really “off”. Like knowing people are going to be upset with every decision you make — and balancing whether to move forward or give into their frustration. Like the pressure of “Sunday’s coming”. (Pastors — know that one?) Like carrying the weight of everyone, but sometimes feeling you’ve got no where to share your own struggles. Stuff like that. FULL POST

Posted 7/30/14 at 10:30 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices

How to Make a Bad Time Even Worse

Photo: Pixabay/luctheo - Public Domain

By Joe McKeever

“I have sinned against the Lord.” (2 Samuel 12:13)

The former mayor of New Orleans, C. Ray Nagin, has been sentenced to federal prison for 10 years. The charges involved kickbacks, bribery, and general crookedness. If making promises he never followed through on were a crime, the man would never leave the big house.

Observers say Mr. Nagin got a break from Judge Ginger Berrigan. She could easily have given him twice that long–federal guidelines set the minimum as considerably more than 10 years–but she went easy on him.

The only person griping about that is Nagin himself.

Even though found guilty by a jury, and in spite of outright falsehoods in his testimony, the man is certain he was framed and wants to be sure you and I know it. FULL POST

Posted 7/29/14 at 11:44 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices |

1 comment

What Kind of Martyr's Death Would You Die for Christ?

Photo: Flickr/Lisby - Creative Commons
Mary the Queen of England received the nickname Bloody Mary after executing Christian reformers. One of the Protestant leaders executed during her reign was Nicholas Ridley who appears in this painting.

By Wade Burleson

News out of Pakistan today details how a seven-year-old girl and her infant sister were brutally murdered by radical Muslims in Islamabad, all because their grandmother, who was also murdered, posted religious 'heresy' on her Facebook account.

This account of religious violence is just one of hundreds coming out of Sharia-law countries, where Muslims believe Allah requires 'death' for heretics and infidels. FULL POST

Posted 7/29/14 at 11:09 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices

Short Prayers

Photo: Flickr/David Amsler - Creative Commons

By Joe McKeever

My brother in Christ Dr. Vander Warner Jr. got me started thinking about this by his recent article on “Short Prayers.” (Do what I did and google it.)

Frank Laubach, literacy pioneer and beloved brother in Christ, used to call these “prayer arrows.” Short sentences sent heavenward to praise, give thanks, intercede or summon the Lord’s assistance have a potency all their own.

The hypocrites think they will be heard for their “much speaking.” (Oh, I pray for two hours every morning. You mean you don’t?)

Professor Dan Crawford remembers someone saying, “A sentence prayer is not a life sentence.”

Pagans think they will be heard for their loud praying. (“God must be far off and we have to summon Him to draw near to us.”) The Baal-worshipers on Mount Carmel are the poster children for this foolishness (I Kings 18:26). FULL POST

Posted 7/28/14 at 3:18 PM | Christian Post Guest Voices

My Favorite Apostle is ...

Photo: Flickr/Sang Valte - Creative Commons
Bible opened to The Book of John.

By Hoyle Dabbs

Do you have a favorite first century apostle? Somewhat strangely, most of us do.

Until 1998 mine was Apostle Peter. Peter is the man . . . lol. Apostle Peter always tells it as it is never pulling any punches. Oh how I wanted to be like Apostle Peter in my service to God, in the ministry I was called and ordained to do.

As a young minister I was a crack the whip kind of preacher. If anyone left my meeting with out their toes being trampled upon, they had to have slept through the sermon. I don't say this with pride. God forming us into what He wants us to be in this world begins at the moment of our salvation and continues until the day we take our last breath.

Yes, in my young mind the Church had to be perfect and that meant every child of God had to be perfect. As a pastor I received perfection of His children as my assigned responsibility concerning the flock God was giving me, as well as any visitor who attended our services. FULL POST

Posted 7/28/14 at 11:59 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices

What Society Will Never Tell You: True Beauty Is Inner Beauty

Photo: Flickr/Martijn van de Streek - Creative Commons
Singer Colbie Caillat

By Randy Alcorn

If you frequent social media, perhaps you’ve seen singer Colbie Caillat’s music video for her song “Try,” in which she challenges society’s expectations of beauty for women. The video, which features the singer and several other diverse women removing their makeup and ending the song as their natural selves, has gone viral since its release earlier this month, receiving over 13 million views.

Colbie Caillat’s song has hit a nerve with many women who struggle to live up to looking like society says they should. This issue is nothing new. Psychology Today compared the results of 1972 surveys and 1985 surveys on how people felt about their bodies and overall appearance. Over 50 percent more women were dissatisfied with their bodies in 1985 than in 1972. Though I can’t find a subsequent update of these particular surveys, various studies confirm that the trend has only continued. In our appearance-centered culture, where the appearance of youthfulness and outer beauty is held to with a white-knuckled grip, this increasing dissatisfaction is a major source of stress. FULL POST

Posted 7/28/14 at 11:37 AM | Christian Post Guest Voices

14 Kinds of Seeker

number 14
Photo: Flickr/Steve Bowbrick - Creative Commons

By David Murray

There’s a word that I used to hear a lot growing up in Scottish churches, but I don’t here much of it today. That word is “seeker.” Maybe it’s because there are less seekers around. Or perhaps it’s because it’s too commonly assumed that people brought up in the church are already found and don’t have any seeking to do. Or have we made conversion so quick and easy that there’s never any struggle, search, pursuit, or seeking – just quick and easy finding as soon as anyone shows any interest?

Whatever the reason, it would help “seekers” if we acknowledged they exist and that there are many different kinds of them with many different and challenging needs. Here are a few I’ve come across in ministry. FULL POST

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