Leadership Links 12/11/2019

EVANGELISM

Where does evangelism fit on Sunday mornings? (Michael Keller): There is an active debate about the role evangelism should play in Sunday worship services. On any given Sunday should we assume our audience are believers or nonbelievers? Read more at The Gospel Coalition.

Words of encouragement to keep praying for the unbelieving loved ones (Chuck Lawless): Some good encouragement to keep praying for our loved ones at ChuckLawless.com.

God uses simple things to spread the gospel (Emily Cobb): For many of us, anxiety over not having the right words may prevent us from saying anything about Jesus at all. I’ve been there, and often find myself slipping back into that thinking—yet it is when I remember the simplicity of the gospel, and the fact that God uses whatever he wills to draw men and women to himself, that I find the courage to open my mouth. Read more at Matthias Media.

In the moment: We can always find a reason for putting off serving the Lord (Andree Seu Peterson): While some churches have lost the appetite for mentioning hell, Jesus talked about hell more than anyone in the Bible, and more than He talked about heaven…And someone in your family, on your street, doing your dry cleaning, repairing your car, is sleepwalking toward that precipice, yet there is always something more important at the moment than alerting them. Read more at World Magazine.


SPIRITUAL WARFARE

We dare not ignore the devil (Jon Bloom): We live in post-Enlightenment cultures that consider the biblical, supernatural worldview to be a foolish religious hangover from the Dark Ages. The very idea of a demon-haunted world is ridiculed. But not only is it considered foolish; it is quickly being considered abusive to insinuate that a person might be afflicted by a demon. Read more at Desiring God.


LEADERSHIP

Appoint elders but not too quickly (Brad Larson): “Hire slowly, fire quickly” is a fine adage in the business world, but it’s unfit for church governance. Once an elder is installed, he is spiritually tied to the church. Removing him quickly will strain the body and violate trust. Read more at The Gospel Coalition.


CHURCH

The faithful church ministry according to the Scriptures (Geoffrey Kirkland): He didn’t create the church and leave it up to us to figure out how to do it. Rather, we find in Scripture what faithful church ministry looks like. One text that specifically addresses the issue is Ephesians 4. In this article, we’ll see 7 ways of understanding what a faithful church ministry is like according to the Bible. Read more at Vassal of the King.

11 weak reasons to leave a church (Thom Rainer): I know there are legitimate reasons for leaving a church (e.g., the message is unbiblical, you’ve moved to another city, etc.), but too many people leave a church for the wrong reasons. Realizing that there are always exceptions to any of the reasons listed below, here are 11 “weak” reasons to leave. Read more at ThomRainer.com.


PREACHING

Preaching is worship, not performance (Matt Henslee): The desire to perform before the audience in front of you is an example of “the sin that so easily ensnares,” because that’s your focus. That’s your crowd. They’re your adoring fans. But it’s also a trap! Read more at Facts & Trends.

5 reasons I often begin a sermon with a personal illustration (Chuck Lawless): I understand (I think) some of the dangers of using too many personal illustrations in a sermon: It’s easy to make the sermon sound more about me than about God.What sounds so exciting to me—because it happened to me—might not be as exciting to others. It might be, in fact, that no other preacher would choose to use my illustration because nobody else finds it effective. It’s always a temptation to make ourselves look good in our illustrations. On the other hand, it’s quite common that I begin a sermon with some kind of personal illustration. Here’s why. Read more at ChuckLawless.com.


CULTURE

Enneagram: The road back to you or to somewhere else? (Kevin DeYoung): If you haven’t heard of the Enneagram yet, it won’t be long before you do. After being used for several decades in Catholic retreats and seminars, the nine-type personality tool has seen an explosion of popularity in evangelical circles. Since 2016, evangelical publishers have released at least three-full length books on the Enneagram: The Road Back to You: An Enneagram Journey to Self-Discovery (IVP 2016), The Sacred Enneagram: Finding Your Unique Path to Spiritual Growth (Zondervan 2017), and Mirror for the Soul: A Christian Guide to the Enneagram (IVP 2017). Read more at The Gospel Coalition.