Today's Word for Pastors...
Contend, O LORD, with those who contend with me; fight against those who fight against me.
Today's Preaching Insight...
A Good Start Stained
They had it all.
Adam and Eve had such a good start in life.
They were created "in the image of God" or at the highest level of God's created order -- the only creatures designed for intimacy or holy communion with God (read the whole story inGenesis 1:1Genesis 2:13:24).
They complemented each other. Though Adam was the first to admit it, Eve probably joined the refrain, "This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh."
They were in charge of the whole deal. God said, "Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every thing that moves on the earth." Everything was just about perfect.
Of course, our fairer gender often suggest our Lord did make man first; only to conclude, "I can do better than that!"
Then there is the not so Biblical tale of God telling Adam to go, be fruitful, and multiply; only to witness the young man return with puzzled look on his face and inquire, "what's a headache?"
Regardless, it was a good start. Everything was just about perfect. But you know what happened. God said Adam and Eve could use, manage, and enjoy everything around them except for one thing: the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.
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I Believe I'll Testify
Much of the greatest preaching in America takes place Sunday by Sunday in African-American churches. In his new book i believe i'll testify: the art of african-american preaching (Westminster John Knox), Cleophus J. LaRue explores those distinctive characteristics that make black preaching such a powerful rhetorical tool into the 21st century. Of particular interest to me was LaRue's chapter on the disconnect many black students encounter when they study preaching in many predominantly white seminaries. Whatever your ethnicity, you'll find valuable insights for preaching in this brief volume.
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