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Denison Forum

Denison Forum

Christians Should Strive to Live a Quiet Life

Author John Mark Comer notes that Jesus lived by the spiritual disciplines of silence and solitude, Sabbath, simplicity, and “slowing,” which John Ortberg defines as “cultivating patience by deliberately choosing to place ourselves in positions where we simply have to wait.” In response, Comer says he has reorganized his life around three simple goals: slowing down, simplifying his life around the practices of Jesus, and living from a center of abiding in Christ.

Make a 'Spiritual Inventory' Part of Your Daily Routine

We cannot change our hearts as the Spirit can. However, we can hinder the Spirit from doing his transforming work in our lives. Craig notes that “the Holy Spirit has a personality. He has likes and dislikes. He feels, thinks, enjoys, likes, suffers, and desires.” As a result, it is vital that we “do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God” (Ephesians 4:30) and that we “do not quench the Spirit” (1 Thessalonians 5:19).

We Are Facing a Cultural Crisis

Carl R. Trueman’s new book is titled Strange New World: How Thinkers and Activists Redefined Identity and Sparked the Sexual Revolution. It is the best historical explanation of our current cultural crisis I have ever read. Trueman believes we are facing today “a situation without obvious historical parallel.” In brief, contemporary society has made two catastrophic decisions that are undermining our culture and endangering our future.

Our Identity Is Not Defined By What We Do

The Bible defines our identity not by what we do but by Whose we are. We are told that “to all who did receive [Jesus], who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God” (John 1:12). If our identity is our unchanging essence, this is our identity as Christians. Everything else about us can change, but this cannot. Once we become the children of God, we are a “new creation” (2 Corinthians 5:17). We will forever be the children of our Father in heaven.

The Importance of Praying for Our Fellow Christians to Be Empowered

The first Christians prayed together for God to grant them boldness to continue speaking his word (Acts 4:29). As a result, “when they had prayed, the place in which they were gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and continued to speak the word of God with boldness” (v. 31). Are you praying for your fellow Christians to be so empowered? Are you asking your fellow Christians to pray the same for you?

The Transformative Effect of Embracing Biblical Faith

Secularism continues to grow in the US. According to Pew Research, roughly three in ten Americans have no religious affiliation of any kind. Younger generations are less engaged in church than their parents; many committed Christians are not active in a local congregation. On this April Fool’s Day, let’s consider King David’s admonition in Psalm 14:1: “The fool says in his heart, ‘There is no God.'” His observation applies not just to atheists and secularists but also to committed Christians in ways we may not fully appreciate today.

It Is Essential to Submit Daily to the Lord

If we would make a transformative impact on our culture, Christ must first make such an impact on us. Daily submission to him is vital to the sanctification that empowers our lives and witness. Oswald Chambers observed: “Abandon to God is of more value than personal holiness. ... When we are abandoned to God, he works through us all the time. How abandoned to God would he say you are today?