Preach the Word 2013: Panel Discussion

At the end of each day at the Preach the Word conference they did a panel discussion with the speakers for the day. Here are some things that jumped out at me from the discussion with Justin Holcomb, Alex Early and Leonce Crump:

  • You can grow a church through preaching through books of the Bible. 
  • When you go to minister to people, take someone with you. Don’t hang out with non-Christians on your own. Use that as a chance to mentor and disciple new leaders.
  • An indicative in the Bible is not the gospel, it is often the fruit of the gospel. It is describing, “this is the reality.”
  • Everyone wants to be a good person. An effective communicator sets up the tension that you can’t be.
  • Sometimes guys plant churches because they want to have a crowd to preach to. That’s not a good reason to plant.
  • You narrow your approach to preaching if you don’t think about who is in the room.
  • You can’t go wrong preaching Jesus because he’s always confrontational but always welcoming.
  • To reach your neighbor, you must know your neighbor.
  • You are a lazy pastor if you don’t evaluate your preaching.

Preach the Word 2013: Preaching God’s Two Words || Justin Holcomb

bookI’m at the Preach the Word conference through Acts 29 today and as always, posting my notes to the sessions I attend.

One of the speakers is Justin Holcomb. His topic was an incredibly important theological topic when it comes to preaching: preaching God’s 2 words – law and gospel. Justin used Galatians 3:1 – 3, 10 – 14 as his text.

Justin is a pastor at Mars Hill Church, where he serves as Executive Director of The Resurgence and leads the Leadership Development department. He is also Adjunct Professor of Theology and Culture at Reformed Theological Seminary and previously taught at the University of Virginia. Justin holds two masters degrees from Reformed Theological Seminary and a Ph.D. from Emory University. He and his wife Lindsey are the authors of Rid of My Disgrace: Hope and Healing for Victims of Sexual Assault, and he his new book is On the Grace of God.

Here are some things that jumped out in his talk:

  • It is important to understand how law and gospel relate as both are from God. 
  • If we mess up the relationship between the law and the gospel, we are corrupting the core of the Christian faith.
  • When we miss this, we miss the core of the gospel.
  • We know from Scripture that Christ died to set us free.
  • Christ fulfilled the law perfectly.
  • Christ was raised from the dead for our justification.
  • We have been set free from the bondage of sin, the fear of death. We are called what Jesus was, pure and perfect.
  • The gospel has no condemnation.
  • Thesis 1: the doctrinal contents of the Holy Scripture, both of the Old Testament and the New Testament are made up of two doctrines different fundamentally from each other – the Law and the Gospel.
  • The law condemns and the gospel comforts.
  • The law is everything that commands, the gospel is everything that promises favor in Christ.
  • The problem is not with God’s law, but with us.
  • The law directs and the gospel delivers.
  • The 10 commandments are the summary of the law.
  • The law can’t heal what it diagnosis.
  • The law of God is perfect, true and righteous. It is holy, right and good.
  • The law can do nothing to create what it commands (Romans 7).
  • The function of the law is not to generate obedience, grace is.
  • God’s law and God’s gospel are two different words with two different functions.
  • The law tells us the truth but fails to convey the power to fulfill what it commands.
  • The gospel is the good news is that Jesus’ burden is light and there is no more “no” as that went to Jesus on the cross.
  • The gospel reveals God’s goodness, his mercy and his benefits.
  • Jesus took the law very seriously. He came to fulfill it, not abolish it.
  • Jesus summarizes the law in Matthew 22 by telling us to love God with all of us and love our neighbor as yourself.
  • Jesus commands love of God all the time.
  • Jesus doesn’t just summarizes the law, he intensifies it. The sermon on the mount (Matthew 5-7) is a great example of this. “You have heard it said…”
  • Jesus goes past the outward evidence of obedience to get to our heart.
  • Jesus’ call to be perfect is to give up what we worship so we can worship Jesus.
  • Thesis #2: Only he is an orthodox teacher who not only presents all articles of faith in accordance with Scripture, but also rightly distinguishes from each other the Law and the Gospel.
  • Law and gospel go together and in that order.
  • When we use the law to look good, it isn’t to get what Jesus gives us.
  • We can’t have the law without the gospel, but we can’t have the gospel without the law.
  • Forgiveness means never bringing it up.
  • Don’t replace the ministry of the Holy Spirit with law or exhortations motivating the human spirit.
  • Your goal in preaching is not to motivate someone.
  • Exhortation is not yelling or shaming.
  • Thesis #3: Rightly distinguishing the Law and the Gospel is the most difficult and the highest art of Christians in general and of theologians in particular. It is taught only by the Holy Spirit in the school of experience.
  • The only appropriate response to law and gospel is repentance.

Great opening session.

Links I Like

Links of the Week

  1. Do your church start with the why? This is a great question to wrestle with for pastors.
  2. Justin Holcomb on Sex-trafficking at the super bowl. According to stats, the super bowl is the largest sex-trafficking event in the U.S.
  3. Churches to watch in 2012.
  4. Bob Franquiz on 5 factors you need to double this Easter.
  5. The goal of a leader.
  6. Brad Lomenick on How to honor your leaders.
  7. Wal-mart’s wrong headed re-organization. Good leadership advice for pastors.
  8. Perry Noble on You should probably not date him if. This is great advice for single women.
  9. How much is a homemaker worth?

Links of the Week

  1. Tim Keller on the mission of the church.
  2. Mark Driscoll on When Jesus was actually born.
  3. 7 things highly productive people do.
  4. Bob Franquiz on What keeps churches small.
  5. Trevin Wax on The danger of the podcast pastor.
  6. 7 Habits of Highly Ineffective Pastors
  7. Justin Holcomb on What is complementarian.
  8. Sam Rainer on 10 (unexpected) church trends to surface by 2020.
  9. Top leadership tweeters.
  10. Shaun King on Advice for pastors and church planters. This is gold.
  11. What do you tell your kids about Santa?

Links of the Week

  1. 7 leadership lessons from the career of Phil Jackson.
  2. Justin Taylor on Advice for preaching Christ centered sermons.
  3. Joe Thorn on Rebuilding a healthy schedule. Great thoughts on balance and scheduling for leaders.
  4. John Piper on Having a summer mindset.
  5. The life of an introverted leader. As an introverted leader, this was helpful.
  6. When sex feels like a chore.
  7. 10 things submission is not.
  8. Justin Holcomb on How to protect your daughter from barbie.
  9. Perry Noble on What you need to know about your wife.
  10. N.T. Wright on what Stephen Hawking misses about heaven (and what we often miss about heaven).

Links of the Week

  1. Al Mohler on A massive shift coming in what it means to be a Christian. I am always stunned when Christians stop believing in a part of the Bible they don’t like.
  2. C.J. Mahaney on leadership and criticism. The best stuff I’ve seen on criticism. His post on how to criticize a pastor is helpful for any church member.
  3. Justin Holcomb on Defending and proving the resurrection of Jesus.
  4. Bryan Chapell on Preaching the power of grace.
  5. E.M. Bounds on What makes great preaching.
  6. Parents, don’t dress your daughters like tramps. Sad that CNN has to say this, but Christian parents and the church needs to step up to the plate and teach modesty and character among young girls.
  7. Church planter or pastor, does your wife share your calling to ministry? If not, don’t do it or get out of it.
  8. Ed Marcelle on Restoration and relationship in marriage.

Sexual Abuse and the Hope of the Gospel

Newspring Church has an amazing story of pain and abuse that when confronted with the gospel pours forth love and forgivness.

Her name is Megan Davis and click here to watch her story.

For those who know someone or are victims of sexual abuse, Rid Me of My Disgrace, by Justin Holcomb is a must read. Please read and soak in the truths of God’s Overwhelming Love that cleans and makes new.

Props: The Resurgence & Los.


Links of the Week

  1. John Piper on TULIP. Many people have an opinion about the 5 points of Calvinism, what they mean and how that affects how you live. Piper explains them really well in this series.
  2. Will Mancini on 11 trends for churches in 2011. I always read what Will has to say on church and leadership, this list is no different.
  3. A missional way for the pro-life passion.
  4. Michael Wallenmeyer on Missional (and simple) church is unattractive to cultural Christians. We see this a lot of Revolution because of our goal of being simple and missional.
  5. Tony Morgan on 11 questions every church leader needs to ask. Some good stuff here, a gold mine of questions.
  6. Justin Holcomb on What the Bible says about sexual assault. He recently wrote a great book Rid of my Disgrace: Hope & Healing for Victims of Sexual Assault.
  7. Mary Kassian on the Church in a post-Feminist Era.
  8. Scott Thomas on Parenting Sons.
  9. Dave Bruskas on Parenting daughters.
  10. Mark Driscoll put out a free ebook on Genesis. How to read it, talk about it with kids. Looks great. It looks especially helpful for our next series at Revolution.
  11. 10 characteristics of a missional church.
  12. Jeff Vanderstelt on Leading your people on mission.
  13. Tullian Tchividjian on Gospel gold.

Links of the Week

  1. The Village Church on Churches planting churches. Right now, we are starting to work through plans to plant our first church as Revolution. I’m hoping this happens in the next 2 – 5 years. This vision is also one of the reasons I am excited about Revolution joining Acts 29.
  2. To your tweets into a journal.
  3. Sam Harris of Fast Company wrote an article about contradictions in the Bible. Justin Holcomb and Matt Perman wrote two great responses to the article. You can read Justin’s here (love Justin’s title Why Fast Company need to do their homework) and Matt’s here. On the same topic, if you have questions about the Bible, how we got it, if there are contradictions in it. A great book to check out is The Big Book of Bible Difficulties.
  4. Is the church afraid of modesty?
  5. Jamie Munson on Leading your family in stewardship. One of the roles of a husband/father is to lead their family. The area of stewardship, how your family spends their money, time and resources all fits under the category of stewardship.
  6. How great leaders aspire action.
  7. Ed Stetzer’s take on George Barna’s research on the resurgence of the reformed camp.
  8. Josh Buice on The troubling view of Joel Osteen. Joel has a new book out and was recently on The View and continued his teaching of not wanting to offend anyone with the gospel.
  9. The journey of Lecrae. If more rap was like Lecrae, I would listen to more rap.
  10. Perry Noble on The price of being a leader.
  11. Is it possible to be too nice as a leader? Ron Edmondson thinks so, great stuff.
  12. Mark Driscoll on Daddy christmas tips. These are great and a must read for every dad.