Istoria Ministries Blog Posts

  • The Difference Between My Church and His Church

    Sep 19, 2018 | 07:40 am

    The Difference Between My Church and His Church The other day I went to a fast-food restaurant and ordered a couple of salads. It was my turn to do dinner, so I did it the easy way. After arriving home, I realized the restaurant hadn't given me the condiments for my salads (dressing, nuts, etc.). I got back in the car and took my second trip across town, back to that same fast-food restaurant. Arriving home the second time, I realized that the condiment packets didn't have what should have been in them.Argghh. Frustrating.I didn't get what I wanted. I felt poorly served. Nobody at the restaurant recognized[…]

    Read more...
  • Authoritarianism, Fundamentalism, and Religious Leaders Who Control Those in Front of Them

    Sep 11, 2018 | 07:31 am

    Authoritarianism, Fundamentalism, and Religious Leaders Who Control Those in Front of Them Mariam Ishag, a Christian woman in Sudan, was hanged by fundamentalist religious leaders for 'apostasy.'In Sudan, there is no difference between 'civil' authority and 'religious' authority. The civil authorities in charge of Sudan believe it a crime to be a Christian.Judge Abbas Mohammed Al-Khalifa sentenced Mariam to death with these words: "We gave you three days to recant but you insist on not returning to Islam. I sentence you to be hanged to death."The Sudanese judge believes himself to be God's authority over this woman's life. He sentenced Mariam 'to death' because he believes he possesses his power and authority from the Divine. When the[…]

    Read more...
  • Abraham Lincoln Converted to Christ at Gettysburg

    Sep 5, 2018 | 14:51 pm

    Abraham Lincoln Converted to Christ at Gettysburg I recently came across a post I originally shared 10 years ago. It's the story of how President Abraham Lincoln consecrated his life to Jesus Christ while walking the battlefields of Gettysburg.  My heart was warmed as I read the story as originally shared by D. James Kennedy, the former pastor of Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church.   Dr. Kennedy preached this message more than once during the course of his ministry at Coral Ridge, and I understand why. History books do not portray Lincoln's faith. It's a story, however, that needs to be repeated at least once a decade. TEXT: "Therefore being justified by faith, we[…]

    Read more...
  • Patterson, Pressler, Cole, and SBC Fundamentalism

    Aug 29, 2018 | 06:56 am

    Patterson, Pressler, Cole, and SBC Fundamentalism I am the son of a Southern Baptist pastor, grandson of an SBC evangelist, and have pastored the same SBC church for over a quarter of a century. I'm an SBC insider.And I feel like the Southern Baptist Convention has dodged a bullet. Fundamentalism.In 1979, at the beginning of the SBC Conservative Resurgence, I was about to enter my senior year of high school in Fort Worth, Texas, but I remember my parents coming home from Houston ecstatic that Adrian Rogers had been elected President of the SBC. My family was friends with the Rogers' family, and Adrian's election was "a surprise"[…]

    Read more...
  • Criticism Willingly Given and Freely Received

    Aug 27, 2018 | 07:10 am

    Criticism Willingly Given and Freely Received A few years ago I came across an article in the National Review called The Duty of Harsh Criticism.The National Review has a tagline "Where intellects collide," so most National Review articles are intended to be read by intellectuals.The Duty of Harsh Criticism was written in 1914 by a twenty-one-year-old woman named Cicely Isabel Fairfield (picture left), who wrote under the pen name Rebecca West.Rebecca believed that was the duty of free-thinkers to listen in a disrespectful manner.In her mind,  criticism should be the norm.And, according to West, critical thinking has become a lost art which is in need of recovery. Listen to just[…]

    Read more...
  • Baptist Blues and the Interior Life of Chuck Kelley

    Aug 24, 2018 | 07:47 am

    Baptist Blues and the Interior Life of Chuck Kelley Dr. Chuck Kelley speaking at NOBTS, August 21, 2018In the first fall chapel service for the fall of 2018 at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, Dr. Chuck Kelley, Jr., President of NOBTS, spoke to seminary students.Dr. Kelley's words can be heard for yourself in the video posted below. Dr. Kelley, who has been president of NOBTS since 1996, began working at NOBTS as professor of evangelism in 1983. Thirty-five years of service to the SBC and NOBTS. Dr. Kelley is the brother of Dorothy Patterson, Dr. Paige Patterson, former President of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, is Dr.[…]

    Read more...
  • Reasons Church StaffStop Attending after Leading

    Aug 22, 2018 | 09:39 am

    Reasons Church StaffStop Attending after Leading Carey Nieuhof writes an interesting blog about leadership. Cary is an author, motivational speaker, and former pastor. He recently wrote an article on why vocational church pastors and staff (e.g. "those who once drew a salary from the church) have a hard time attending church once they've been involved in leading one. I found his points interesting and replicate his post in full below: 9 Reasons It’s Hard To Attend A Church Once You’ve Been Involved In Leading OneCarey NieuhofKind of a strange to even say it, isn’t it?Why on earth would pastors and church leaders have a hard time attending church of[…]

    Read more...
  • The Path to Happiness In Life May Surprise You

    Aug 15, 2018 | 06:02 am

    The Path to Happiness In Life May Surprise You A person whose life has 'crashed and burned' because of poor choices made told my wife and me that they'd just finished reading my book Happiness Doesn't Just Happen."I never understood the gospel," this person said."I've been in church all my life and never comprehended who I am by God's grace. I've been looking for something from other people. Truth is, I've had what I've needed from my heavenly Father all along, but I made other people my source, looking for happiness from them. I've now realized that what I was looking I had all along in my relationship with[…]

    Read more...
  • Fear Is Removed When Great Joy Squeezes It Out

    Aug 6, 2018 | 14:58 pm

    Fear Is Removed When Great Joy Squeezes It Out Fear is an emotion that cannot be removed by logic.Fear must be displaced by another emotion to be removed. And there's only one emotion that guarantees the removal of fear in your life. Great joy. Let me show you evidence of this from Scripture. When Jesus rode into Jerusalem as "King of kings" the apostle John tells us that He took possession of a donkey, sat upon it, and then said to the inhabitants of Jerusalem: "Do not be afraid, Daughter Zion, your king is coming, seated on a donkey's colt" (John 12:15)Jesus was quoting Zechariah 9:9. But Jesus makes an important change from what[…]

    Read more...
  • Six Strategies for Hearing Rather Than Being Heard

    Jul 30, 2018 | 09:30 am

    Six Strategies for Hearing Rather Than Being Heard The saying, "God gave you two ears and one mouth, so you should listen twice as much as you talk" rings true in my experience.I see relationships fall apart because each partner worries more about being heard than hearing.Businesses go bankrupt because managers focus more on getting their point across to customers than getting to know and listen to their customers. Churches shrivel in membership because pastors spend less time listening and more time talking.Google the subject and you'll find much more emphasis on how to effectively make a point than how to efficiently receive a point made.I'm working hard on properly[…]

    Read more...