06 April, 2006

People in Need of Change Helping People in Need of Change

Honest about the need for all Christians to change. Straightforward about the sufficiency of Scripture to bring counsel to those who need help. Compassionate in the approach. Reliant on Christ as the changer of hearts. Rebuking in calling out our fears about using the Word as the instrument of change. Worth reading for all Christians who desire to be used by God to aid in the sanctification of others.

"We must not let ourselves become comfortable with the casual, where ministry is limited to offering general principles that would fit anyone's story. The genius of personal ministry is that it is personal. It can take the grand themes of the Great Story and apply them with utter specificity to the particulars of an individual's life. Personal ministry is not preaching to a very small congregation. It is the careful ministry of Christ and his Word to the struggles of heart that have been uncovered by good questions from a committed friend. This means that an effective, God-honoring, heart-changing personal ministry idependentnt on a rich base of personal information. You cannot minister well to someone you do not know". p165

"When we approach moments of personal ministry, we do not come empty-handed, but with the theology of Scripture. The theology of the Word not only describes God's plan of redemption, it explains people as well. The Bible knows us, even to the deepest thoughts and motives of our hearts. It dramatically depicts our suffering and our joy, untangling the complexities of human relationships. It depicts human feeling, knowing, and communicating. If you read the Bible, you will know and understand people". p168

"Rebuke is the word the Bible uses for brining truth to where change is needed, yet most of us don't react positively when we hear it. For example, if I called you one night and said that I would like to come over the next morning and rebuke you, how would you respond? Would you run to a friend and say, 'The most wonderful thing is going to happen to me tomorrow! Paul is coming over to rebuke me. I can't wait! It has been so long since I have been rebuked.' That would not likely be your reaction. Many of us would rather go to the dentist and be drilled without Novocain. When we think of rebuke, we think of harsh words, red faces, ultimatums, and threats. We don't think of an act of patient and committed love. So it is important to consider what a biblical model of rebuke looks like. It is part of the Speak component of personal ministry, and we need to know what 'speaking the truth in love' is all about". p200

"Confronting people should not only confront them with failure and sin, it should also confront them with the gospel. We cannot forget this! We need to remind people of their identity in Christ (2 Peter 1:3-9; 1 John 3:1-3). We need to remind them of God's amazing promise of forgiveness (1 John 1:5-10), and the wonderful gift of the indwelling Holy Spirit (Eph. 3:20), who gives us strength to obey. These truths give believers the courage to examine their hearts, confess their sin, and turn to Christ. If we are speaking as agents of repentance, the law is not enough. We must come with the gospel as well". p213-214

"When we see Christians who do not exhibit Christian character or produce good fruit, we ought to ask why. What is missing? Peter's answer is, 'These people have forgotten who they are' ([2 Peter 1] v9). They have lost sight of their identity in Christ, so they do not realize the resources that are theirs. Because of this, they fail to live with hope, faith, and courage. Their problems worsen and new layers of difficulty are added. This heightens their potential to walk through life with a problem based identity. There are probably more people living like this than we would ever imagine. When I work though this passage with people, I am frequently impressed by how often they respond as if they have never heard these truths before. Their sense of who they are has usually been shaped by their problems". p262


shawn said...

so... we're dne with PaedoCommunion?

haha jk.

sounds like a good book.

edwardseanist said...

Looks good Nate. I think I will get a copy.

Jonathan Moorhead said...

The Tripp brothers are wonderful!

Ellie said...

Practicing this wisdom involves much faith. It is my fervent prayer to see My Jesus in all of my living.

Nate said...


I am more than happy for all to continue the communion discussion...

shawn said...

Well you should put an addition to your other one.

At least then people would comment because it was the latest.

Are there Continuities? Discontinuities? of the Passover, and the Lord's Supper? if so what are they - there, that would make a good post.

Looking forward to it.

phillyfan said...

Paul Tripp attends 10th Pres in Philly as do I. I had the pleasure of attending a Sunday School class he taught a few years ago there. He is a brillant teacher and has a way of making scripture seem so practical. I studied psych in college and found it interesting. I'm becoming more and more convinced Bibical counciling is the only way to go. I have this book but have not read it yet. It is on my must read list for this year.