Resources on Pastoral Ministry

Testimonies of Faith and Fortitude

By Charlie Wingard · July 11, 2015 · 0 Comments
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1843 was a momentous year in Presbyterian history. The founders of the Free Church of Scotland abandoned homes, incomes, and church buildings to uphold the spiritual independence of Christ’s church. Their courage captured the attention of the evangelical world, and bequeathed stirring testimonies of faith and fortitude to subsequent generations of Bible-believing Presbyterians. Author Sandy Finlayson skillfully sketches the lives of ten of these leaders in Unity & Diversity: The Founders of the Free Church of Scotland. Bound together by love of the gospel, a high view of the authority of God’s word, confessional fidelity, and missionary outreach, these men nevertheless held a variety of opinions on controversial issues of the day: church union with other Presbyterian denominations, Roman Catholic emancipation, the evangelistic campaigns of Dwight L.…

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Visiting the Sick

By Charlie Wingard · June 17, 2015 · 0 Comments
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When ministers visit the flock, they bring the ministry of the word to homes, hospitals, prisons, and any other place where God’s people find themselves in need of a pastor’s care.  Ministers should give special attention to the sick, for they often struggle with discouragement and doubt. They need reassurance of God’s love for them in Christ Jesus our Lord. The Presbyterian Church in America’s Book of Church Order helpfully reminds ministers that they “should visit the the people at their homes, and especially the sick” (8-3). Learning to visit and care for the sick skillfully requires a thorough knowledge of God’s word, sympathy for the afflicted, lots of experience, and the personal example and wise counsel of seasoned pastors, which is…

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Cremation or Burial: Does It Matter?

By Charlie Wingard · April 21, 2015 · 8 Comments
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More and more Christians choose cremation instead of burial. The reasons vary. For some it is a matter of hygiene, for others it is the only option available; still others choose cremation for financial reasons. Many Christians believe the Bible is silent on the matter. Since I am frequently asked whether cremation is a viable Christian alternative to burial, let me share with you some thoughts on both cremation and burial. I believe the Bible has more to say about the matter than many suppose.[1] At the outset let me make clear that while I believe a good scriptural case can be made for traditional Christian burial, I do not intend for a moment to cast doubt upon the faith of…

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What Pastoral Ministry Is All About

By Charlie Wingard · April 16, 2015 · 0 Comments
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I know of no more beautiful declaration of a pastor’s love for his people than Paul’s words to the struggling young church at Thessalonica: “So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us” (1 Thessalonians 2:8). Isn’t that what ministry all about? Share the gospel . . . share your life . . . regard people with tender affection. Share the gospel – for without it, there is no salvation (Romans 1:16). Share your life – for without giving yourself to people, there is no mutual bearing of  burdens that fulfills the law of Christ (Galatians 6:2). Regard people with tender…

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Comforting a Grieving Nation

By Charlie Wingard · April 4, 2015 · 0 Comments
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This week a 147 peopled were massacred at Kenya’s Garissa University College. On Good Friday, the Archbishop of the nation’s Anglican Church published a powerful and moving pastoral letter that concludes : “While governments have a vital role, even more important are the hearts and minds of ordinary people. Let us covenant together before God that we will never ever surrender our nation or our faith in Christ to those who glory in death and destruction. We will not be intimidated because we know and trust in the power of the cross, God’s power to forgive our sins, to turn death into the gate of glory and to make us his children for ever.”

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A Brief Definition of True Christianity

By Charlie Wingard · March 14, 2015 · 0 Comments
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“We give thanks to God always for all of you, constantly mentioning you in our prayers, remembering before our God and Father your work of faith and labor of love and steadfastness of hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Thessalonians 1:2-3 John Calvin comments: From this we may gather a brief definition of true Christianity – that it is a faith that is lively and full of vigour, so that it spares no labour, when assistance is to be given to one’s neighbors, but, on the contrary, all the pious employ themselves diligently in offices of love, and lay out their efforts in  them, so that, intent upon the hope of the manifestation of Christ, they despise everything else, and, armed with patience, they rise superior…

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