Topic | Sanctification

Posts Categorized: Sanctification

Teaching Your Children About Total Depravity

By in Highlands Fellow on

Teaching Your Children About Total Depravity

Dinner Table Doctrine I recently taught my children the meaning of total depravity. We started with the first word: total. Sitting around the dinner table I explained the biblical truth that there is nothing good in us. Not even a speck. Until God gives us a new heart, our hearts (and toes, and elbows, and eyelashes, etc) are completely bad. There is no innocence, no righteousness, nothing within us as fallen creatures that is pleasing to God. I think that they got it. And I really mean that, about their understanding what Daddy was teaching, but I also know that. . .
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Should I Pledge Allegiance to the Flag?

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Should I pledge allegiance to the flag?

I Pledge Allegiance to…what? It’s not like I really thought about it, but from time-to-time I wondered how a union of States could be indivisible. I guess I thought it was more of an encouraging sentiment, an exhortation. Kind of like Sonny and Cher’s United We Stand: “United, we stand/ divided, we fall/ And if our backs should ever be against the wall/ we’ll be together.” And we know how long that lasted. So, how did we get to be “one nation (under God, thanks Ike!), indivisible?” And can we be so and boast “liberty and justice for all?” That. . .
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Free Basement Tape Download! All in the Family

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Audio: All in the Family (Basement Tapes #42)

This weekend only we are offering Basement Tape #42 as a free download! This conversation is on age-segregation in the culture and the church. We talk about how, like the world around us, we see our families not as a single unit, but as a temporary arrangement of individuals. The family is never more temporarily together than when they come to church. Our programs have programmed out of our minds the very notion of the family as we all go different directions for our Bible studies, Sunday school classes, clubs, and activities. When did this become normal, and what is. . .
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The Problem with Conspiracy Theories

By in Highlands Blog on

The Problem with Conspiracy Theories

Conspiracy Theories & Gossip When nations gossip we often call it a conspiracy. Sometimes the conspiracy sounds plausible but others are so absurd that you just have to wonder how any rational person could believe such nonsense. Often, the plot is so complex and the number of people involved so large that you have to throw out everything we know about human nature to believe the story we are told. After all, the Scriptures do assert that we are prone to gossip. It is a sin God warns us about more than once, presumably because we needed that warning. And. . .
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You Can Live Set Apart & as Salt and Light

By in Highlands Fellow on

Living Set Apart as Salt and Light

Tension in the Christian Life The people of God are known in this day as the church. The church is understood properly by several analogies or descriptions in Scripture — the body of Christ, the ekklesia, the elect of God, the chosen lady, the bride of Christ, and so on. All of these have commonality while describing different facets of our relationship to God as His people, and our relationships with each other. How to Be “Set Apart” One interesting way of describing this relationship is the commonwealth of God. This is a covenantal term, describing a bonding together for. . .
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Keep Your Thinking On the Straight and Narrow

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Keep Your Thinking to the Straight and Narrow

Scandal of Leaving the Straight and Narrow Did you read the recent expose in Christianity Today about the large New York City church and the shocking sins publicly committed and rank heresy preached directly from the pulpit? Any attempt to clean up the situation was thwarted by the fact that the members were all aligned with different pastors. You would probably know this church more by the fact that it was founded, and for years ministered to, by perhaps our country’s most beloved and respected pastor. How does a church so quickly fall into such traps given the firm foundation. . .
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Is Temptation Sent by God?

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Is Temptation Sent by God?

My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing…Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him. Let no man say when he is tempted, I am tempted of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, neither tempteth he any man: But every man is tempted, when he is drawn. . .
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Is There Hope for a Culture in Decline?

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Evidence of a Culture in Decline With Western culture in decline, it’s easy to lose sight of the progress of Christianity. In our near-sightedness, we look at the downward turn of our culture and run around like dispensational Chicken Littles screaming “The Rapture is coming! The Rapture is coming!” We forget that just 500 years ago, the “ancient” Aztecs and Mayans were slaughtering their own people and those they captured by the millions. Even 400 years ago at what became Jamestown, the Powhatan empire was a murderous, heathen, idolatrous, hedonistic, polygamist culture. And yet, God was pleased to bring forth. . .
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Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth

By in Highlands Fellow on

Rightly Dividing the Word of Truth

Rightly Dividing or Wrongly Fighting? Some things are worth arguing about. You should fight for the truth. You should defend the faith. In a world gone mad, where lies, heresies, and worldliness surround us on every side, you do not have to look far to find a foe. So much is wrong with the church and the world, the feisty warrior has much to keep him busy. Some people, however, just like to argue, and they will argue about nothing and everything. They criticize people for what they say and for what they do not say. They pick specks out. . .
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Should You Answer a Fool According to His Folly?

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Should You Answer a Fool According to His Folly?

Do not answer a fool according to his folly, lest you also be like him. Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own eyes.—Proverbs 26:4-5 What the Bible Says About Fools The Word of God has much to say about fools, none of it flattering. The first twelve verses of the twenty-sixth chapter of Proverbs are all about fools and how those who are wise should understand and handle them. Solomon had his share of interaction with fools, and in our text the wise king gives sound advice as to how to deal with. . .
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Why Big Government Can’t Save Us

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Why Big Government Can't Save Us

What Does the Bible Say About Big Government? In writing this column I had to choose which of many good ways to fulfill this assignment. I had to think through what might be the best way to approach the subject RC asks me to address. What Scripture applies? How can I avoid stretching a passage just to fill the necessary word count? What did God actually say and how should that word be applied? Proverbs on Work & Wealth Writing about why the state cannot save us is not like that. The Bible is full of reasons why the state. . .
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I Did Not Come to Bring Peace but a Sword

By in Highlands Fellow on

I did not come to bring peace but a sword.—Jesus

Jesus Talked About Family Conflict We are a people at war. This war is not always fought out in the marketplace, in the broader culture, or in the church. It is often fought in the confines of the family. Jesus, in one of the most uncomfortable of all His uncomfortable sayings, tells the disciples this in Matthew 10:34-39: Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her. . .
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Fighting Worldliness as a Family

By in Highlands Fellow on

Fighting Worldliness as a Family

Worldliness in Christian Children Generally speaking, we parents desire the best for our children and would protect them from what harms them or that which is contrary to what we believe to be right and good. So what is going on in the American Evangelical church where — if statistics tell us the truth — so many of our children abandon the faith? According to reports, between 70-90% of Christian students abandon the faith after their second year of college. What these reports often don’t address is why this is occurring. Many Christian families begin training their children in the. . .
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Your TV is a Contentment Killer

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Your TV is a Contenment Killer

Trading Contentment for Gadgets They’re designed to make us discontented, covetous, and miserable, unless we buy, buy, buy. “How many new gadgets do you need?” “Just a few more.” The Lord offers us the kingdom, if we’ll seek Him first and His righteousness. And we trade that for what the world has to offer. We look to the world for our worth and to tell us how we should look, what we should pursue and how many children we should have. Then we wonder why we’re miserable. Could it be that we’re chasing after the wrong thing? As soon as. . .
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Special Offer: Home Education & Discipleship Starter Pack

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Home Education & Discipleship (Starter Pack)

We’ve collected all our best resources for homeschooling families into one place. Introducing the Home Education & Discipleship Starter Pack (now available in our store). This collection includes books and audio resources to help you think about why you homeschool, what you are aiming to accomplish, what your family goals should be, and how to answer many of the tough questions that homeschool parents have as they travel the homeschool journey. Special Offer in July! During the month of July we are offering this complete package as our gift to those who join our clubs. Club members support our ministry. . .
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Christian Parenting with Perseverance

By in Highlands Fellow on

Christian Parenting & Sanctification We have just begun preaching from the book of James. In preparing a sermon for the last part of chapter one, verse twenty-five jumped out at me: But he who looks into the perfect law of liberty and continues in it, and is not a forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does. In particular, I was impacted by the clause, “and continues in it.” While the applications of this verse are manifold with regard to our sanctification, I was struck by its application to us as. . .
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Relativism — America’s Idol

By in Highlands Fellow on

Relativism in Narnia In C.S. Lewis’ The Last Battle, an ape named Shift tried to convince the free animals of Narnia to embrace Calormene culture and serve their king, the Tisroc. Pretending to be Aslan’s prophet, the Ape told the animals that Aslan had sold them into the service of the Tisroc in order to bring all the “benefits” of Calormene culture to the backward land of Narnia. “Please,” said the Lamb, “I can’t understand. What have we to do with the Calormenes? We belong to Aslan. They belong to Tash. They say Tash has four arms and the head. . .
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Weapons of Spiritual Warfare

By in Highlands Fellow on

Weapons of Spiritual Warfare

Words of Spiritual Warfare The first question in the Bible came from the devil. Within that question, everything that God had said about mankind and the world was put into doubt. Here was a new voice speaking backwards regarding all that had been thus far spoken forth. And this was the cause of man’s fall. Thorns and thistles burst forth, but also all of the myriad levels of death: leanness of soul, frenetic activity, discontent, bitterness, arrogance, and so on. Adam and Eve enjoyed innocence, intimacy, perpetual youth, fulfillment, and fellowship with God to name a few. They were given. . .
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Children are a Blessing

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Believing that Children are a Blessing Gabriel just fell asleep sitting on my lap. As I was laying him down, I realized just how dependent he is and how much I love him and care for him. Eleven years and six children ago, we sat in the office of our pastor, along with the staff counselor and the chairman of the deacon board. The reason for the meeting was that Kara and I had just announced our third pregnancy in three years and the church was very concerned about sending us to the mission field with this “problem” brewing. From. . .
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Justification in the Book of James

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Justification in the Book of James

You see that a man is justified by works and not by faith alone. — James 2:24 James & Paul on Justification There have been many who misinterpret this verse and conclude that we are declared righteous and forgiven all our sins on the basis (in part, at least) of our works. “Just read the words,” they say, “justification by faith alone is flatly denied by James.” Even among some who believe that sola fide is the doctrine upon which the church stands or falls there is a struggle understanding what James is teaching in this text. They know he. . .
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