Welcome to Provocative Church

As you browse, read and share the many articles, our hope is that you may find this site an encouragement to your faith and Christian life.

Worship

We were created to worship. And we are to worship God with every aspect and area of our lives - presenting our bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God.

The Church

The bride of Christ can often times be difficult and messy - but it is Christ's beautiful mess - to which He is the head and chief cornerstone.

Ancient Future

Our faith comes out from a rich heritage and history. It was during the formative years of our faith that creeds, confessions, traditions, and liturgies were developed. These practices and traditions recaptured will not only anchor us but move us forward in our faith.

Freedom

There is freedom in the gospel as it proclaims that in Christ we are sons and daughters of the King. The importance is learning to preach those truths to our heart and life everyday.

Monday, January 28, 2013

True Christian Theology


“No theology is genuinely Christian which does not arise from and focus on the cross.”— John Stott The Cross of Christ

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Holy Violence Against Sin

While sin cannot drag a true blood-washed believer in Jesus to hell, the basic lesson Jesus teaches in this passage is vital to the life of faith. Jesus’ words still hold true: sin is out to ruin us, as badly as it can, dragging us as far away from God as it can, in any way that it can. Just as Aron Ralston didn’t decide to sever his own arm until it was clear there was no other alternative, so we will not exert holy violence against our sins until we’re convinced that they really are dangerous. 
- Licensed to Kill by Brian G. Hedges

Photo Credit: Tariq's Fantasy World via Compfight cc

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Too Easily Pleased


One of my favorite quotes from Lewis:
If there lurks in most modern minds the notion that to desire our own good and earnestly to hope for the enjoyment of it is a bad thing, I submit that this notion has crept in from Kant and the Stoics and is no part of the Christian faith. Indeed, if we consider the unblushing promises of reward and the staggering nature of the rewards promised in the Gospels, it would seem that our Lord finds our desires, not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.
- C.S. Lewis

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Entirely His Own

I pray God, for the sake of Christ...to receive me now as entirely his own, and to deal with me, in all respects, as such, whether he afflicts me or prospers me, or whatever he pleases to do with me, who am his. Now, henceforth, I am not to act, in any respect, as my own—I shall act as my own, if I ever make use of any of my powers to any thing that is not to the glory of God, and do not make the glorifying of him my whole and entire business.

Jonathan Edwards (1703—1758). A colonial American preacher, theologian, and philosopher, Edwards became pastor of his church in Northampton, Massachusetts in 1726. He is widely known for his famous sermon "Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God" as well as his many books including The End For Which God Created the World and A Treatise Concerning Religious Affections. Edwards died from a smallpox inoculation shortly after beginning the presidency at the College of New Jersey (later Princeton University).

Saturday, January 05, 2013

The Grading Curve Of A Pharisee

If we met the Pharisees of Jesus' day, we most likely would have like them...because if we were truly honest with ourselves, they would look a lot like us.


(ht: from Paul Chappell and you can download a pdf of this infographic from his website)

Repentance Out Of Conviction Over Mercy


Repentance out of mere fear is really sorrow for the consequences of sin, sorrow over the danger of sin — it bends the will away from sin, but the heart still clings. But repentance out of conviction over mercy is really sorrow over sin, sorrow over the grievousness of sin — it melts the heart away from sin. It makes the sin itself disgusting to us, so it loses its attractive power over us. We say, ‘This disgusting thing is an affront to the one who died for me. I’m continuing to stab him with it!’

- Tim Keller

Having The Gospel Captivate


"Being able to articulate the gospel with accuracy is one thing; having its truth captivate your soul is quite another." JD Greear - Gospel: Recovering the Power that Made Christianity Revolutionary

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

No One Is More Influential To YOU Than YOU


“No one is more influential in your life than you are, because no one talks to you more than you do....

....You are constantly preaching to yourself some kind of gospel. You preach to yourself an anti-gospel of your own righteousness, power, and wisdom, or you preach to yourself the true gospel of deep spiritual need and sufficient grace. You preach to yourself an anti-gospel of aloneness and inability, or you preach to yourself the true gospel of the presence, provisions, and power of an ever-present Christ."  Dangerous Calling by Paul Tripp