Shared Values

Vladimir Putin wants higher historic ranking. To be an Alexander the Great. Or Julius Caesar, Napoleon, or, especially, a Joseph Stalin. None achieved character awards, but they didn’t care. All had three qualities that, together, made them dominant figures in their time. And having this triad of abilities, their appetite for power over others flourished …

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Sound Faith

Why do some people seem to have more faith than others? Are there special keys for spiritual success? Do some believers generate more spiritual determination than others? The question reminds us of the despairing father in Mark 9:23-24 who asked Jesus to rescue his demonized son. When he asked, “If you can do anything…” Jesus …

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Edwards’ Twelve Signs – the Twelfth

In 1746 Jonathan Edwards published his Religious Affections with “Twelve Distinguishing Signs of Truly Gracious and Holy Affections.” He was pointing out the authentic features of the Great Awakening after many “awakened” souls had reverted to their former unspiritual ways. Edwards’ twelfth and final sign was his longest and most applied—seventy-eight pages. “Gracious and holy …

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Edwards’ Twelve Signs – the Eleventh

In 1746 Jonathan Edwards published his Religious Affections to offer “Twelve Distinguishing Signs of Truly Gracious and Holy Affections.” After the Great Awakening the spirituality of many converts soon faded. And this raised questions about the overall validity of the revival. Edwards, in response, meant to distinguish authentic faith from experiences that hadn’t lasted. Edwards’ …

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Edwards’ Twelve Signs – the Ninth

Jonathan Edwards offered “Twelve Distinguishing Signs of Truly Gracious and Holy Affections” in his 1746 Religious Affections. He aimed to separate genuine faith from false forms of religion. Edwards’ ninth sign complemented the eighth. Both noted the changed hearts of believers after God’s work of new birth. The ninth noticed the new softness that comes. …

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Edwards’ Twelve Signs – the Eighth

In his 1746 Religious Affections Jonathan Edwards offered “Twelve Distinguishing Signs of Truly Gracious and Holy Affections” to distinguish genuine faith from fading forms of religion. In his eighth sign Edwards summarized the disposition found in every redeemed soul. “Truly gracious affections differ from those affections that are false and delusive, in that they tend …

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Edwards’ Twelve Signs – the Seventh

Jonathan Edwards’ “Twelve Distinguishing Signs of Truly Gracious and Holy Affections” in his 1746 Religious Affections defended the authenticity of New England’s recent “great awakening.” For many the awakening was simply a passing spiritual fad, and critics now dismissed the entire event. Edwards, however, meant to distinguish true transformations from those that didn’t last. His …

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Edwards’ Twelve Signs – the Sixth

Jonathan Edwards offered “Twelve Distinguishing Signs of Truly Gracious and Holy Affections” in his 1746 Religious Affections. A spiritual awakening in New England, and in Edwards’ church, had come and gone, and afterwards skeptics were dismissive of the whole thing. Edwards was more measured, discriminating God’s authentic reformation from the passing fads of revivalism. The …

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