Resources on Sanctification

Tips for RTS Students: Keep Your Heart Open

By Charlie Wingard · December 6, 2018 · 0 Comments
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One sure way to cripple your ministry is to speak to your congregation harshly, either in or out of the pulpit. Don’t confuse harshness with boldness. One can speak softly and gently and still be bold. To be bold, according to Merriam-Webster, is to be “fearless before danger” – a virtue when communicating biblical truth. But the voice of the bold may be calm, the words measured, and the tone devoid of the harshness that pushes people away. William Plumer reminds us that Harshness is not fidelity. There are hardly any maxims more false or mischievous than these: “There is no good done unless opposition is aroused,” [or] ’”One’s fidelity may be tested by the enmity he awakens against himself…

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Booknote: “Watchfulness” by Brian G. Hedges

By Charlie Wingard · October 5, 2018 · 0 Comments
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Believers must be watchful, ever alert to spiritual danger. From Jesus’ “watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation” to Peter’s “be sober, be watchful; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour,” the New Testament sounds an alarm calling God’s people to spiritual watchfulness (Matthew 26:41, 1 Peter 5:8). Given the ample scriptural admonitions to spiritual watchfulness, the number of Puritan sermons and treatises  devoted to the discipline of watching is unsurprising. What surprises is the contemporary lack of interest in an area of vital concern to every believer. Therefore, I’m grateful for Brian Hedges’ Watchfulness: Recovering a Lost Spiritual Discipline. He argues that “watchfulness is as necessary to a healthy…

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Prosperity, Success, and Comforts: Are They Blessings?

By Charlie Wingard · September 29, 2018 · 0 Comments
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Christians may wrongly conclude that prosperity, success, and comforts are always blessings. John Flavel rightly notes that whether prosperity, success, or comforts are blessings that benefit our souls is determined by the manner in which they come to us and their effect on our lives. He warns that prosperity, success, and comforts are not a blessing in these circumstances: If we did not pray for them. “It is a sign that comfort is not sanctified to us, which does not come ordinarily in the way of prayer.”  We may receive the desires of our heart, but are our desires holy? Have we submitted our desires to God in prayer? If we obtain them by sinful means. “Better is a little…

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Get the Rest You Need

By Charlie Wingard · September 25, 2018 · 0 Comments
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“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. Six days you shall labor, and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God.” Exodus 20:8-9 “On the seventh day God finished his work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all his work that he had done. So God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it God rested from all his work that he had done in creation.” Genesis 2:2-3 Are you weary? God has a remedy for your weariness, and a plan to ensure that you get the rest you need.  It’s simple and cost-effective. He has built a weekly day of rest…

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John Chrysostom on Repentance

By Charlie Wingard · September 15, 2018 · 0 Comments
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“Repentance is a medicine that wipes out sin, a gift given from heaven, a wondrous power, a grace surpassing the might of laws.”* _________ * John Chrysostom in  John Calvin, Institutes of the Christian Religion (ed. John T. McNeill; trans. Ford Lewis Battles; vol. 1; Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press, 2011), 622–623.

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Our Promises: A Point of Honor

By Charlie Wingard · September 11, 2018 · 0 Comments
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“O Lord, who shall sojourn in your tent? Who shall dwell on your holy hill? He who walks blamelessly and does what is right and speaks truth in his heart . . . who swears to his own hurt and does not change.”  Psalm 15:1-2,4 David asks, “O Lord, who shall dwell on your holy hill?” (Psalm 15:1) A momentous question! Like David, you should want to know what kind of person stands under God’s favor and in his holy presence. The answer to David’s question includes this heart-piercing declaration: He “who swears to his own hurt and does not change” (Psalm 15:4). Let the words sink in. A godly man keeps his word not only when honoring a commitment when it’s advantageous, but also when it’s costly. The godly understand…

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