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Scott Brown Welcomes Kevin Swanson to the Platform

Dawn in Cincinnati as the Last Day of The Sufficiency of Scripture 2009 Begins

 

 

“My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up.” – Psalm 5:3.

 

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Paul Washer – America’s Jeremiah

 

 

This evening, Christ was preached. Paul Washer is a man like Jeremiah, who speaks because he cannot hold it in. He closed this wonderful Friday of the conference by preaching the Gospel. I could say much about all that he said, but his message was very simple: “Your home-education, nice clothes, and manners cannot save you. Flee to Christ!”

“My desire is to strip you of every hope in the flesh, to shut you off from every hope whatsoever of somehow making yourself right with God by your own virtue and merit.” If you repent of trying to clothe yourself in the filthy rags of your own righteousness and fall on Christ, He will save you. Then you will grow in Christ-likeness, and you will know His presence; this is the Gospel.

Our beginning point and our ending point, our motivation and our reward, our desire and our satisfaction, must be in Christ alone. “Judge everything you do by this standard: is it really only for Him? If he took everything away and left you only with Him, would you still have joy unspeakable, because your hope is in Him?”

“Throw yourself on Christ, and you will not be disappointed.”

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Biblical Youth Ministry

 

 

This evening I tried to set before the gathered families a Biblical analysis of youth ministry.

I grew up along with the culture of youth ministry—read all the books, tried all the methods. But I came to realize that the rise of programmatic, age-segregated youth ministry in the mid-twentieth century was actually a new invention in the history of the church. For the first time in history, trained youth ministers have been recruited in order to put the young people of the church in the hands of so-called experts. Now, at the beginning of the 21st century, churches are shelling out millions of dollars on programs, buildings, and entertainment for youth. The focus of these churches has been shifted from evangelism to entertainment under the name of evangelism and church leaders are setting aside the commands of God for church and family life in order to grow the church.

This philosophy and practice of comprehensive, age-segregated, programmatic youth ministry is indisputably unbiblical in pattern. There is no evidence that this practice ever did or should exist among the people of God. It is even contrary to the ministry patterns of Christ. As one brother recently pointed out to me, modern youth ministry can be destroyed by just one verse of the Bible, Proverbs 13:20: “He that walketh with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed.”

Modern youth ministry is also inherently destructive in its impact. It divides the church by creating generational division and multiple cultures instead of a unified “body.”

By rejecting youth groups, we are not rejecting ministry to youth. On the contrary, we wholeheartedly embrace and promote generous investments in teaching Scripture to the youth of the church. But we must do it in God’s way! What are His commands and patterns? Every Christian is charged with making disciples of all nations including their youth.

God-honoring marriage is the most important means of youth ministry. When husbands love their wives, the children get a picture of what Christ does for His bride. Fathers ought to teach their children the law. Proverbs in particular, because it contains the wise instruction of a father to his son, should always be included in ministry to youth.

I hope that we are now at the end of this 50-year failed experiment. We now have almost three generations of children who had no father who walked beside them but a youth group instead. It is obvious that half a decade of youth group does not produce young people who are passionate about the church.

Youth ministry is a weed that gained root in the church and has grown for a long time, wrapping its roots around almost every area.

What should our response be to this 50-year-old weed? It is time to root out and replant. In the words of the prophet Jeremiah, “…I have set you this day over nations and over kingdoms, to pluck up and to break down, to destroy and to overthrow, to build and to plant.” We must root up the weed, pull down the house of inventions and replace it with God’s beautiful plan for youth ministry. Will you join with me in putting your hand to this task?

There is one reason for this action and one reason alone—it is not ordained of God.

 

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WWII Fighter Pilot Bill Brown Flies Again!

Special Friend, Future Leader, and Volunteer Stephen Breagy

A Special Brother Sister Duo

Let the Little Children Come

Dr. Joe Spoke, and We Listened

 

 

Dr. Joe Morecraft gave our first keynote of the evening tonight, making the case that Scripture is sufficient for all of life. Of course, this very claim demanded that he use Scripture itself to do so.

Starting with Deuteronomy 4, which forbids adding to or taking away anything from the Word of God, he went on from passage to passage.

At one level, the answer to whether Scripture is sufficient to rule us is a simple question: What better standard can there be? If not this standard, what standard? “The Bible is divinely authoritative on everything about which it speaks, and it speaks about everything.”

Joe is a man that is filled with the Holy Spirit and preaches passionately. So I was not surprised to see tears in his eyes as he prayed in closing that all of his listeners would walk away dedicated to tell the whole world about Jesus Christ and His sufficient Word – until the knowledge of God covers the earth as the waters cover the sea.

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Men’s Chorale – God of Our Fathers

As I write, the SoS Men’s Chorale is once again regaling attendees with a glorious hymn of the faith. “God of our fathers” was composed for the 4th of July Centennial in 1876, at a time when Americans still acknowledged with gratitude God’s providence in the founding of our nation. The hymn’s message of multi-generational commitment to our fathers’ vision and faithful walking with our fathers’ God is incredibly appropriate as we seek to apply the doctrine of the sufficiency of Scripture, a doctrine which was recovered and passed down to us by our Reformation forefathers.

God of our fathers, whose almighty hand
Leads forth in beauty all the starry band
Of shining worlds in splendor through the skies
Our grateful songs before Thy throne arise.

Thy love divine hath led us in the past,
In this free land by Thee our lot is cast,
Be Thou our Ruler, Guardian, Guide and Stay,
Thy Word our law, Thy paths our chosen way.

From war’s alarms, from deadly pestilence,
Be Thy strong arm our ever sure defense;
Thy true religion in our hearts increase,
Thy bounteous goodness nourish us in peace.

Refresh Thy people on their toilsome way,
Lead us from night to never ending day;
Fill all our lives with love and grace divine,
And glory, laud, and praise be ever Thine.

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Kevin Swanson Speaks on the Sufficiency of Scripture for Family Life

Managing the Platform

 

 

Peter Bradrick, acting as Master of Ceremonies for the weekend, addresses the audience.

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Geoff Botkin Shares How He Applies the Sufficiency of Scripture to the Botkin Family

Families gathered in the main room during this last breakout session got to hear Geoffrey Botkin share very personally about how his family seeks to apply Scripture in their lives.

He started with this disclaimer: “What the Botkin family seeks to do is not a secret; it can be found in the pages of Scripture.” I love this emphasis in Geoff. He shared that he tries to cultivate this attitude in his children: “You live by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.” (Matt. 4:4) Open the Bible each day and find your marching orders, find something to obey.

We can teach our children to be zealous for good works and train them in doctrine, reproof, and instruction in righteousness by teaching them to open Scripture. Most American Christians fail to apply Scripture because they value it only as an empty convention and are blind to its power and relevance.

Just one more point I have to mention briefly – in talking about patriarchy, he made this critical point: “My children love to obey me because they know I am not doing my own will either, I am submitted to Christ.” There is much more to tell you. Make sure to get the audio.

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Jeff Pollard Speaks on an Important Issue in the Church Today – Women’s Ministry.

A crowd of all ages filled Ballroom D this last session to hear Jeff Pollard give the second part of his message on what Scripture says about women’s ministry. Jeff exposited the Biblical model of older women discipling younger women from Titus 2:3-5. He pressed home to his hearers the vital necessity of obedience to this passage: if it is not lived out, the Gospel seems powerless. The stakes are high—the alternative to godly older women mentoring their younger sisters in Christ is blasphemy of the Word of God.

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