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Christ Our Substitute

For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures. (1 Corinthians 15:3) THE CROSS IS CENTRAL in the apostolic proclamation of the gospel. Paul said to the Corinthians, “I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified” (1 Cor. 2:2). To the Galatians, he wrote: “But far be it from me to boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by which the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world” (Gal. 6:14). When we meditate on the cross, our thoughts are often taken up with the details of Jesus’ physical suffering. This is not inappropriate, […]

Putting Gospel Care Into Practice

God loves when we love his children. He asks us to step into the “messy” lives of others both actively and practically. He even tells us that it is through our love for one another that we come to know him better (1 John 4:7). It is a gift, in and of itself, that he has invited us to take part in the care of his people—just as it is a gift that he’s provided others to take part in caring for us. Time and again, we neglect this gift because it feels “too hard” or we don’t “know enough” to help. But the truth is, God has graciously given us all the tools we need to care for one […]

Messy Care

What Is Messy Care? Welcome to the Intro to (Messy) Care and Discipleship! This material is based on the book Loving Messy People by Scott Mehl. In this eight-session course from IBCD, you will learn how to minister to and care for others in the mess of life. This is an opportunity for you to grow in your understanding of the purpose of relationships as they exist in a sinful and fallen world. It will also enhance your ability to provide meaningful one-another care in the local church. Everyone has relationships and, in the course of those relationships, everyone experiences problems. Does Scripture have anything to say about how we approach one another in the mess of life? Of course […]

Interview with author Lucy Ann Moll

This week, the Institute for Biblical Counseling and Discipleship is featuring Lucy Ann Moll, author of Help! I Get Panic Attacks, on their Hope + Help Podcast. Check it out at the link below. The minibook is available for purchase here. Hope + Help for Panic Attacks with Lucy Ann Moll In this episode of the Hope + Help Podcast, Christine Chappell interviews Lucy Ann Moll about her mini-book, Help! I Get Panic Attacks. Some of the questions addressed in this interview are: • What does it feel like to have a panic attack? Why do some people get them? • What does helpful care and support look like when someone is having a panic attack? What is unhelpful to say in […]

The Gift of the Holy Spirit

IN HIS RESURRECTION AND EXALTATION, Christ did far more than return to us our humanity. Even as the Son of Man departed from the earth, he sent us his Spirit. This was a pivotal event, unprecedented in the history of God’s saving deeds. As Peter points out, it was also the fulfillment of Joel’s prophecy that God would pour his Spirit out in the “last days” (Joel 2:28–32; Acts 2:17–21). True, the Spirit of God was active before the coming of Christ. Scripture speaks of the Spirit’s involvement in both creation (Gen. 1:2) and redemption (Isa. 63:7–14). From Peter and Paul, we know that the Spirit was also the agent of God’s self-revelation through Scripture (2 Peter 1:21; 2 Tim. […]

The Godwardness of Sin

THOUGH WE ARE CREATED IN THE IMAGE OF GOD, the tragic reality is that we have rebelled against God and now live under his judgment and wrath (Gen. 3: 16–19; Rom. 1:18). The image of God is therefore distorted. In Calvin’s words, God’s image is deformed, vitiated, mutilated, maimed, disease-ridden, and disfigured. This is true for all of us. “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Rom. 3:23). We have failed to glorify God by not loving his person, obeying his laws, and delighting in his glory. Rather than exclusively worshiping our glorious Creator, we have served and worshiped created things (Rom. 1:21–23). We are “alienated from the life of God” and “dead in trespasses and […]

Introducing ‘Why America Hates Biblical Christianity’

Pursuing Christlikeness in Times of Mounting Hostility and Apathy by David A. Harrell As never before in American history, Christians are witnessing biblical values being replaced by laws that impose a godless, immoral, oppressive social agenda on their country. The overall disdain political and religious liberal activists have toward conservative values in general and authentic Christianity in particular has produced an ideological civil war that is raging out of control. But many people sense there’s something more sinister going on, something beyond the realm of ideological divides, something evil, perhaps even eschatological—and that’s the position of this book. Here you will learn the interplay between two corresponding evils that have been secretly gaining strength in America for many years: human […]

Created for Relationships

TO BE CREATED IN THE IMAGE OF GOD means we are designed to display God’s nature, character, and glory. As a mirror is made for reflection, so God created us to be mirrors of his character, instruments for reflecting his glory. Created in God’s image, we are invested with special dignity and entrusted with particular duties. Our distinct worth as human beings springs from being God’s image-bearers, the unique reflectors of his character on earth. The rest of creation declares God’s glory, speaking of it vividly in a great variety of ways (Ps. 19:1). But we reflect it, actually making it, in small part, visible and tangible. One of the supreme ways we reflect God’s glory is by relating to […]

Introducing “Who Needs a Friend When You Can Make a Disciple?”

Why We Wrote This Book When we tell people the title of our book, we sure do get some strong reactions! Our intention is certainly not to downplay friendships or even usurp the priority of the marital relationship. Rather, we want to show ladies that through the process of discipleship they can find a faithful friend. This is what happened to us. We have observed more often than not, when women come to a new church, they seem to be on an endless search to “find a friend” so they can “feel” a part or “feel” connected. As Christian women, we often go about finding a friend in the wrong manner. Based on common interests or a similar “season of […]

The Chief End of Man

So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them. (Genesis 1:27) WHY DID GOD CREATE US? For what purpose? The Westminster Shorter Catechism answers, “Man’s chief end is to glorify God and enjoy him forever.” Speaking originally of the scattered exiles of Israel whom God promised to redeem, Isaiah 43:6–7 agrees: I will say to the north, Give up, and to the south, Do not withhold; bring my sons from afar and my daughters from the end of the earth, everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made. In the first chapter of Genesis we don’t read […]