Maybe he’s not a friend, but he is an acquaintance. And I’ve have gotten to know him pretty well through his ministry and daily email writings.
In seminary, grad school for preachers, I took a class taught by a young doctoral candidate. It was called Evidentialism and I think I still have my paper from that class. This instructor went on to pastor in Midland, Atlanta, and Park Cities in Dallas. He’s a Resident Scholar at Baylor Scott & White, a Senior Fellow at … just read his bio on Wiki. It’s too long for here.
Jim Denison, oops, Dr. Jim Denison. (I knew him before the doc on the title.) You can find his news and forum at http://www.denisonforum.org.
His take on current events, cultural happenings, and a believer’s Biblical response has proven highly valuable and oft repeatable material for my sermons, lessons, and writings. He has shared on cancel culture, statues, Covid, and more. He reveals positive news out of tough times. And, he always brings it back to the Word.
Now on to an example … excerpts taken from Doc Denison’s August 3rd forum. You can read the full article here.
Burning Bibles in Portland and two sentences every American needs to hear
They burned Bibles. Right there in the downtown area of a major American city, they burned Bibles. How do we as believers respond? What should we do? Jim Denison responded by sharing two lines and then three principles that direct us. How do we respond to those who oppose our way of life and what should be our way of thinking?
How can we make God’s offer of redemption in response to our repentance more available and attractive to those who need it? Consider two sentences I believe every American needs to hear.
Ronald Reagan used to tell those who served in his administration, “Remember, we have no enemies, only opponents.”Quote/Line 1
And then gleaming from Joshua 24, Doc Denison shared three principles …
- God can use anyone, whether we think so or not. For example, many of us, and many in the Bible like Abram, come from questionable and pagan family lines; Joseph went from a prisoner/slave to Egypt’s Prime Minister; a church persecutor became its greatest missionary; and more. Maybe a protestor just needs to hear of God’s Grace to become a faithful follower.
- All we have is ours by grace. For those in Josh 24, those beginning the nation in the promised land … The Lord concluded his address with this statement: “I gave you a land on which you had not labored and cities that you had not built, and you dwell in them. You eat the fruit of vineyards and olive orchards that you did not plant” (v. 13). And for us today … (we) did not earn the right to be born in America rather than North Korea. (We) did not earn the right to hear the gospel from Christians who knocked on my door and invited me to ride their bus to church. If you know more about your Lord than those who oppose your faith, you have an obligation to pay forward to them the grace you have received.
- We need the power of God to live as the people of God. Joshua 24 challenges God’s followers to fear the Lord and serve him. Yet in one generation or two, the people of Israel did what was evil, served false gods, and abandoned the Lord. So for us, we cannot ask Americans to do what we are not doing. If we would challenge them to repent of self-reliance and live in dependence on Jesus, we must do the same. If we would call them to biblical morality, we must exhibit biblical morality — Otherwise, our words are only words.
Joshua modeled the commitment God is calling us to emulate when he told the nation, “As for me and my house, we will serve the LORD” (Joshua 24:15).Quote/Line 2
They burned Bibles. Yes, but I will not see them as the enemy but potential fellow believers, I will show grace from the grace I have received, and I will live by his power, not my own. For in everything, I will say … As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.
In two sentences supported by three principles from Joshua 24, Doc Denison challenged, enlightened, and prodded the readers (including me) in wisdom and application of wisdom to our way of living. Maybe you too can benefit from his ministry.
Have a blessed day.