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Four Major Ways Pastors Hinder Church Revitalization

Thom Rainer starts this article with some interesting statistics: Nine out of ten churches in North America are declining, or they are growing slower than the community in which they are located. Nine out of ten churches need revitalization. Many times the pastor is a major contributor to the failure to revitalize. Rainer then outlines what he sees as “four …

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A Debilitating Disease within the Body of Christ

Has this generation of Christians lost the meaning to the word “holy”? It often appears it has to the casual observer.  Just within my lifetime, and I’m not very old, the church has drastically moved away from any attempt at holy living, from being separate and distinct from the world around us. The reasons are many, but I believe the …

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“The People Did What Was Right in Their Own Eyes”

In the Old Testament book of Judges, we see a phrase oft repeated, and “the people did what was right in their own eyes.” This phrase is a sign of a society or nation sliding into moral decay. They no longer acknowledge God or His law, but instead simply make their own determination of what is right and what is …

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Why The Church Relies on Curriculum Rather Than Mentorship

Karl Vaters offers some interesting thoughts concerning discipleship: “What discipleship curriculum do you recommend for small churches?” I get asked that question a lot. And my answer almost always disappoints the questioner. Mentoring is better than curriculum. Especially for discipleship. Discipleship isn’t primarily about knowing theology and memorizing verses–as important as that is. The essence of discipleship is, as Paul …

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When Church Attendance Becomes An Idol

I have a troubled past when it comes to counting people who attend your church. One of my early memories as a new staff member in a church is hearing the double-edged statement, “If numbers didn’t matter to God, He wouldn’t have written a book on it.” David’s Problem with Numbers Consider for a moment this illustration from 1 Chronicles …

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The Future of Seminary Education

In mid-January, I had the privilege of attending the Midwest Leadership Conference in Springfield, IL. The workshops were deep in content and presented by key influencers in their field of expertise. Below are notes from two workshops I attended with Dr. Jason Allen, President of Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City, MO. Theological Education in the 21st Century Key Takeaways: Main concern for institutions of higher …

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The Most Disturbing Trend Happening in Your Church in 2015

According to Will Mancini, founder of church consulting firm Auxano, there is a disturbing trend for many churches: “Specifically, in the last 2 years, I have see one common thread become a common rope. Its presence is now ubiquitous; every church I talk with mentions this problem…. I have never seen a problem discussed this commonly amid a diversity of …

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37 Lessons Learned from the Mars Hill Church Melt Down

News within the American Church was dominated during the last third of 2014 by the melt down of one of America’s most cutting edge megachurch–Mars Hill Church of Seattle. Started by Pastor Mark Driscoll in 1996, Mars Hill captured the attention of the younger generation while preaching a conservative, doctrinally-rich gospel. In the last two months, since Mark Driscoll’s resignation …