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While there are many books written about Christian discipleship, there are not nearly enough books on discipleship that primarily expound the Bible itself. The Apostle John wrote three letters, however, with the main purpose of helping disciples to grow.
That You May Know: A Primer on Christian Discipleship is an enriching study that will lead you through John’s teaching on following Jesus as a disciple.
This book is more than a commentary and more than a topical book on the subject of Christian discipleship. Instead, this is a primer on Christian discipleship written as a careful reading of God’s word in 1, 2 & 3 John. It’s ideal for your own individual devotional reading or as a helpful resource for your group Bible study.
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Bible Studies: Paul's Letter to the Philippians
Studies from my forthcoming pastoral commentary on Paul’s Letter to the Philippians, Have This Mind: A Primer on the Cruciform Life.
Access the complete set of Bible studies from Philippians here.
Being conformed to the cruciform mind of Christ requires not only our lives, but even our wealth. (Exposition of Philippians 4:10–23)
As those who have received peace with God through Christ, we should seek peace with others and with the world through prayer. (Exposition of Philippians 4:2–9)
Christians have every reason to stand firm in perseverance in the midst of cruciform suffering: we have the hope of glory in Christ. (Exposition of Philippians 3:12–4:1)
Sinful human beings cannot become righteous through keeping the law. We need the righteousness of Jesus Christ imputed to us by grace, through faith. (Exposition of Philippians 3:1–11)
The soaring theology of the Christ hymn inspires more than our worship—it inspires our tedious, unnoticed, selfless servanthood. (Exposition of Philippians 2:19–30)
God calls us to struggle and strive toward our sanctification, but he promises that he will be the One to accomplish the work. (Exposition of Philippians 2:12–18)
In John 21:1–25, John closes his Gospel with a humbling reality: Jesus entrusts his flock to faltering shepherds. (Exposition of John 21:1–25)
Jesus is risen from the dead, but he will soon ascend to the Father. How, then, will the world come to believe in him? (Exposition of John 20:19–31)
After dying on the cross to finish his estate of humiliation, Jesus rises from the dead to begin his estate of exaltation. (Exposition of John 20:1–18)
At his death, Jesus finishes his work in order to become the firstfruits of a new creation—he ends his estate of humiliation in order to begin his estate of exaltation. (Exposition of John 19:28–42)
To gain his heavenly kingdom, Jesus must give up every worldly good: worldly purity, worldly possessions, and worldly parent. (Exposition of John 19:16b–27)
Jesus’ royal power is not of this world. The kingdoms of this world rage against Jesus, but they cannot harm his kingship. (Exposition of John 19:1–16a)
God excludes Esau to prepare for the coming of Christ into the world. Thus, God excludes the worldly from his promises in order to enroll the whole world as his people. (Exposition of Genesis 36:1–37:1)
God brings the storylines of Jacob’s life to a close in order to open the next phase of his redemptive plan. God decreases Jacob in order to increase Israel. (Exposition of Genesis 35:1–29)
Leadership requires sacrificial responsibility. God will establish his kingdom without fail, whether by his appointed leaders or by zealous substitutes. (Exposition of Genesis 34:1–31)
As the reconciliation of Jacob and Esau demonstrates, God reconciles us to our brothers in order to restore us to himself. (Exposition of Genesis 33:1–20)
When God wrestles with us—and even when he cripples us—he does not seek our harm, but our lasting good. God wrestles with us to remake us. (Exposition of Genesis 32:22–32)
In the moment of Jacob’s greatest weakness, he comes most closely to resemble his most illustrious Descendant. God sustains our faltering faith when we are in the shadow of death. (Exposition of Genesis 32:1–21)
Faith alone saves, but saving faith is never alone. Christianity announces that we have been set apart as holy to the Lord. In Christ, you are not now what you were once. (Exposition of 1 Corinthians 6:1–20)
Church discipline is critical to preserve and protect the holiness of Christ’s church. Thus, the Lord Jesus commands excommunication to sanctify his church and to save unrepentant sinners. (Exposition of 1 Corinthians 5:1–13)
What is the nature of true Christian ministry? How should pastors relate to congregations, and vice versa? King Jesus appoints ministers to administer the rule of his reign in his church (Exposition of 1 Corinthians 3:18–4:21)
God builds his Church spiritually—through the accomplished work Jesus Christ and him crucified, and by the work of the Holy Spirit. God alone gives the growth, but his people are the instruments by which God gives the growth. (Exposition of 1 Corinthians 3:1–17)
In his wisdom, God planned in eternity past to save sinners by the person and work of Jesus Christ, but the world cannot discern that wisdom. Thus, God sends his Holy Spirit to reveal his hidden wisdom in Christ. (Exposition of 1 Corinthians 2:6–16)
If the cross is foolishness, and preaching is weakness, how does anyone ever come to believe in Christ? God calls his people to boast in Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit. (Exposition of 1 Corinthians 1:26–2:5)
Over the course of John’s Letters, he has worked through three primary themes: (1) Know God, (2) Believe the Gospel, and (3) Love one another. (Summary of 1, 2 and 3 John)
In 3 John, the Apostle John contrasts living for Christ versus living for self. Everyone is someone’s disciple; what kind of master do you serve? (Exposition of 3 John)
In 2 John, the apostle John gives us a case study of the themes of 1 John. Specifically, John shows how love and truth fit together in the Christian life. (Exposition of 2 John)
In the closing section of his First Letter, the Apostle John insists that Jesus Christ is God and eternal life—and that we should therefore keep ourselves from idols. (Exposition of 1 John 5:18–21)
Building on what he wrote about faith in the previous passage, the Apostle John now shifts his attention to prayer—especially prayer for the prodigal brother. (Exposition of 1 John 5:13–17)
What is faith? Where does faith come from? How do we get faith? What does faith do? Toward the end of his First Letter, the Apostle John answers these questions. (Exposition of 1 John 5:1–12)
Bible Studies: The Gospel of Luke
Access a handful of Bible studies from the Gospel of Luke here. These were studies written during the Advent season of 2018. At the moment, I do not have plans to continue working through the Gospel of Luke; however, I wanted to make these few studies available online for whomever may benefit from them.
Jesus is glorious, but his glory is veiled. The gospel announces that Jesus reveals ever-increasingly more of his veiled glory by his word and through faith. (Exposition of Luke 2:8–20)
The Advent of Jesus is more than a child for Mary, but the beginning of a new kingdom that will reverse human power entirely. God sent Jesus into this world to overturn the kingdoms of this world. (Exposition of Luke 1:39–56)
While the glory of the old covenant was external and visible, the glory of the new covenant is spiritual and invisible. God reveals his glory in the humiliation of his Son and in the faith of the humble. (Exposition of Luke 1:26–38)