Danny Wahlquist Wordpress Blog

August 24, 2012

Mark 2-4 from Nine Marks of a Healthy Church by Mark Dever

Filed under: Uncategorized — dannywahlquist @ 8:40 am

Mark 2 Biblical Theology

One of the chief marks of a healthy church is a biblical understanding of God in His character and His ways with us.

This is the God of the Bible—the creating, holy, faithful, loving, sovereign God of the Bible.

Mark 3 The Gospel

J. C. Ryle put it well when he said, “There is a common worldly kind of Christianity in this day, which many have, and think they have enough—a cheap Christianity which offends nobody, and requires no sacrifice—which costs nothing, and is worth nothing.”

I fear for our nation. There’s a popular suspicion abroad that the Christian Gospel, as expressed by evangelicals, is a threat to our freedoms.

Go and study the history of Germany and note what kind of Christianity reigned for a century before Nazism.

It was not a Christianity of absolute truths from an absolute God. It was a compromising, moralizing, relativizing kind of Christianity offering a gospel that could be shaped by human hands and human thoughts.

Mark 4 Conversion

the first step toward the one true God is to acknowledge that we are not that God.

Conversion includes both the change of the heart toward God that is repentance, and the belief and trust in Christ and His Word that is faith.

The truly changed, truly converted, truly Christian heart can say with John Newton, “I am not what I ought to be. I am not what I wish to be. I am not what I hope to be. Yet I can truly say, I am not what I once was. By the grace of God, I am what I am.”

We have the ability to love and to obey God. We were made with it, having it as part of being made in His image. The problem, though, is in our hearts. We do not choose to do what we are formally able to do. And so we need God to give us new hearts.

I know that the One who converts is not the preacher. The one who converts ultimately is God Himself.

We are called to tell people that they must turn to God. But we must understand that in doing this God is calling us to talk to a bunch of corpses!


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