Choose Your Metaphors Carefully: The Church Is A Pasture Not A Business

Choose Your Metaphors Carefully: The Church Is A Pasture Not A Business

35 years ago, when I began seminary, the “church growth” movement was hitting its stride. In a course taught by an adjunct professor with a Harvard MBA we were taught how be efficient just the way successful CEOs are. Later, in the church growth literature with which...
When Your Pastor Becomes A Social-Justice Action Hero

When Your Pastor Becomes A Social-Justice Action Hero

I know it has become en vogue in our day for pastors to think they’re doing their congregations a great service by framing their sermons to deal with the social justice issues of the day. Obviously, the problems are many and we’re never short of issues to address:...
The Difference Between Magic And Ministry

The Difference Between Magic And Ministry

As a child I was fascinated by “magicians” such as Harry Blackstone Jr. For a few dollars one could order a kit or study library books and learn to do “magic.” Of course, it was not magic at all. It was merely sleight of hand. The “magician” is an illusionist. He...
What Preaching Christ From All Of Scripture Does And Does Not Mean

What Preaching Christ From All Of Scripture Does And Does Not Mean

In recent days there has been considerable discussion about what it means to speak of “preaching Christ from all of Scripture.” Some object to this way of speaking and this approach to Bible interpretation on the grounds that it does violence to the true meaning of...
Pastors Are Not Cowboys

Pastors Are Not Cowboys

I am just back from Cheyenne, Wyoming, which is cowboy country. While there I had opportunity to talk to an old friend and pastor about the business of shepherding and loving God’s people. Wyoming is cowboy country.