If You Think You Get It, You Don’t

You may have noticed that at Creekstone we have one big drum that we beat all the time: God’s grace changes everything. His unfathomable love is what compels us to live as devoted disciples of Jesus. We are devoted to him because he is devoted to us. We love him because he first loved us….

Hallelujah, What a Savior!

In 1875, Philip Bliss wrote this timeless hymn, Hallelujah, What a Savior, to remember and celebrate the gospel. It is the perfect theme for gathering together on a Sunday, being reminded that “in my place condemned he stood.” Man of Sorrows! What a name, for the Son of God, who came; Ruined sinners to reclaim….

Good Leaders Listen

Good leaders listen. This applies to husbands, fathers, coaches, managers, teachers, politicians, pastors, etc. Since I’m on that list several times, I need to make a confession: one of the biggest mistakes I’ve made in ministry and marriage is not listening well. As someone who likes to be right, I find it hard (really hard) to…

Religion vs the Gospel

This is a chart developed by Dr. Johnny Long to describe contrasts between religion and the gospel as articulated by Dr. Tim Keller in his Preaching to the Heart lecture series.

Denominations with Lower Case Letters

One of the questions that I get asked all the time as a church planter is “which denomination are you.” Baptist? Presbyterian? Methodist? Episcopalian? Non-denominational? I like the attitutde of the 18th century revival preacher George Whitefield, who said, “Father Abraham, whom have you in heaven? Any Episcopalians? No! Any Presbyterians? No! Any Independents or…

Why Go to Church?

Why go to church? Now, that is a good question! To make the answer reasonably short, we could say that there are two possible options: we go to give or to get. The law says go to church that you may give to God. But the gospel says that we go to church so that we…

Praying Like We Really Know Jesus

Robert Duvall shows what authentic, non-churchy prayer looks like in his role as Sonny in The Apostle. Okay, I don’t necessarily promote Sonny’s prayer as a model to follow (although it does reflect some of the more “desperate” language in some of the Psalms). It just seems that my prayers are often so formal and…

The Doctrine of the Atonement is Very Simple

“The doctrine of the atonement is very simple. It just consists in the substitution of Christ in the place of the sinner; Christ being treated as if he were the sinner and then the transgressor being treated as if he were the righteous one. It is a change of persons. Christ becomes the sinner. He…

The Melting, Conquering, Transforming Power of the Cross

This quote from my friend, Charles Spurgeon,  gives me great hope in preparing to speak of Jesus this Sunday for Creekstone! “Oh, the power, the melting, conquering, transforming power of that dear cross of Christ! My brethren, we have but to abide by the preaching of it, we have but constantly to tell abroad the…

There is Nothing Left to Prove

I think a driving force for most of my life has been about trying to prove something—mainly that I am somebody. Maybe you can relate. This issue is identity, and it plays out in a thousand ways. I am smart. I’ll prove it. I am athletic. I’ll prove it. I am right. I’ll prove it….