Hell will not unsettle heaven: The horror of judgment and promise of joy (David Mathis): How many of us, if we’re honest, can barely stomach the thought of divine judgment? We may genuinely believe the Bible, and acknowledge the reality (and rightness) of God’s wrath and an eternal hell, while mostly trying to avoid the subject. In a way, we tolerate God’s judgment, but our instinct is to turn away. At bottom, we may be a touch embarrassed by it. We celebrate Jesus’s self-sacrifice at the cross, but talk as little as possible about hell, even when sharing the gospel. The idea that we might someday enjoy God’s justice and power on display in his judgment seems almost imponderable — much less the thought that we might actually appreciate him for it, even now. Read more at Desiring God.
9 ways leaders make themselves vulnerable to spiritual attack (Chuck Lawless): New Testament writers warn us again and again about the reality of spiritual attack (Eph. 6:11, 2 Cor 2:11, James 4:7, 1 Peter 5:8). Based on years of my studying spiritual warfare, here are nine ways I’ve seen leaders allow themselves to be vulnerable to the enemy’s arrows. Read more at ChuckLawless.com.
Dear church: don’t overlook and undervalue the elderly (Josh Buice): One of the sad realities is that statistically older people are closer to eternity (according to the numbers and based on the mere scale of the average life expectancy rule). When you consider how many elderly unbelievers make up a single community, it should cause us to weep that they’re rarely targeted with the gospel. They’re more often overlooked and forgotten as local churches do everything under the sun to reach younger families. Read more at Delivered by Grace.
How to have that hard conversation (Brad Larson): Hard conversations can certainly be painful and embarrassing for all parties. By their nature, be it a rebuke or a bad performance evaluation, a difficult conversation entails sharing a condemning reality with someone else. But do you know what’s beautiful about that? Jesus speaks into every condemning reality with grace, since he has borne all condemnation for those who trust him. Hard conversations can be gospel conversations. So while your guts may churn, your heart can also leap for joy at what God might do. Read more at The Gospel Coalition.
The Romans 8 driven life (Jared C. Wilson): How would you live if you realized that nothing you fear could ever have the last word in your life? What would your days look like if you believed, in fact, that the most defining and secure reality of your very existence was not anything you could see? Read more at For the Church.
Refresh your soul with humility (Jon Bloom): Cultivating humility before God is among the healthiest things we can do for our souls. Read more at Desiring God.
12 simple strategies to pray more (Chuck Lawless): I know very few people who don’t struggle with prayer. Sometimes we try to fix this problem by seeking to become a prayer warrior overnight. A better approach is to build your prayer life one step at a time. Here are some simple strategies for increasing your prayer. Read more at ChuckLawless.com.
On preaching (Jonathan Leeman): In this inaugural episode of the Preacher’s Talk podcast, Jonathan Leeman chats with three friends from Simeon Trust—David Helm, Ed Copeland, and Jeremy Meeks—about preaching. Check it out at 9 Marks.