The Grace of Exhorting

Yesterday’s message in Hebrews 3:1-14 is now on the web. You can listen to the audio here.

As promised, here are my bullet points on the qualities of the godly exhorter and exhorted:

Seven Qualities of a Godly Exhorter

First, gripped by biblical necessity.

Prov. 27:5 – Better is open rebuke than hidden love.

Proverbs 28:23 – Whoever rebukes a man will afterward find more favor than he who flatters with his tongue.

Second, committed to relational proximity.

Prov. 18:24 – A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

Third, known for spiritual dependability.

Prov. 17:17 – A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.

Prov. 27:6 – Faithful are the wounds of a friend; profuse are the kisses of an enemy.

Fourth, strengthened through vertical security.

Prov. 29:25 – The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trusts in the LORD is safe.

Fifth, clothed with personal humility.

Prov. 11:2 – When pride comes, then comes disgrace, but with the humble is wisdom.

Gal. 6:1 – Brothers, if anyone is caught in any transgression, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Keep watch on yourself, lest you too be tempted.

Sixth, aware of situational sensitivity.

Prov.15:4 – A gentle tongue is a tree of life, but perverseness in it breaks the spirit.

Prov. 20:5 – The purpose in a man’s heart is like deep water, but a man of understanding will draw it out.

Seventh, anchored in gospel reality.

Prov. 18:24 – A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.

The Singular Quality of the Godly Exhorted

Committed to favorable receptivity.

Prov. 9:8-9 – Do not reprove a scoffer, or he will hate you; reprove a wise man, and he will love you. Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser; teach a righteous man, and he will increase in learning.

Prov. 12:1 – Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

Prov. 13:18 – Poverty and disgrace come to him who ignores instruction, but whoever heeds reproof is honored.

Prov. 15:5 – A fool despises his father’s instruction, but whoever heeds reproof is prudent.

Prov. 15:31 – The ear that listens to life-giving reproof will dwell among the wise.

Here is the video about the persecuted church that we tried to play at the beginning of the message:

Pray for Saudi Arabia in December

Saudi ArabiaSaudi Arabia is the second most dangerous place to live in the world if you are a Christian according to Open Door’s World Watch List for 2009.

That alone makes the Saudi kingdom a pivotal focus for prayer.

This month’s online edition of Global Prayer Digest is devoted to helping believers pray for God to move on the Arabian penninsula.

During this Advent season let us be a people of intercession for the nations with a special focus on this needy country and her peoples.

Shafia's Story

It’s Friday. Last week I called it “Freeloader Friday.” It’s my day off so I am borrowing from the work of others to post today. But after watching this piece on Timmy Brister’s blog, I couldn’t bear to make light of things at all in the subject line.

As we enter another Advent season starting this Sunday, join me for a healthy dose of perspective from what it means to follow Christ in a place like Pakistan. Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body (Heb. 13:3).