As many of you know, I’ve been riffing on the pastoral themes arising from a study of the life and ministry of the Twentieth Century London pastor John Stott.
Continuing that, then, in this episode we consider the matter of change.
It was early in my ministry when I realized two related things. First, that just about everything I did as a pastor involved change in people’s lives. And secondly, that I didn’t really have a very well thought out theory of change. That is, my theology of sanctification was not well formed.
When I get that straight, it is sweet. But when I don’t, it’s like doing surgery with a table knife. It is not a pretty sight.
I’d love to hear what you think.
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Notes and resources relevant to this episode:
Tim Chester, Stott on the Christian Life: Between Two Worlds (United States: Crossway, 2020).
Westminster Larger Catechism, Q/A #155:
“Q. 155. How is the word made effectual to salvation?
A. The Spirit of God makes the reading, but especially the preaching of the word, an effectual means of enlightening, convincing, and humbling sinners; of driving them out of themselves, and drawing them unto Christ; of conforming them to his image, and subduing them to his will; of strengthening them against temptations and corruptions; of building them up in grace, and establishing their hearts in holiness and comfort through faith unto salvation.”
Eugene Peterson, A Long Obedience in the Same Direction: Discipleship in an Instant Society (United States: InterVarsity Press, 2000).
The quote from Paul Kooistra’s unpublished paper is used with permission. The whole is worth reading and Dr. Kooistra is happy to have me share it with any who request it.
As I think about where one might go to recapture a classical view of sanctification in preaching, I immediately think of Sinclair Ferguson’s The Whole Christ: Legalism, Antinomianism, and Gospel Assurance—Why the Marrow Controversy Still Matters (United States: Crossway, 2016).
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