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Daily Archives: September 18, 2007

Music review Tuesday

Do you know what a “Panhead” is? If you do then maybe you are one. A “Panhead” is a fan of the Christian rock bandComatose Skillet. According to a former band member “Panheads are those who come to three of four shows traveling up to 10 hours, bringing skillets, banners, writing on their cars…etc, we have a special place in our hearts for Panheads.” I have traveled for almost 3 hours to see Skillet, I wonder if I would qualify? The two original members, John Cooper and Ken Steorts preferred different styles of music. Ken was an old rocker and John liked the newer stuff. Their pastor encouraged them to make music together and actually suggested the name Skillet because they could throw all of their musical tastes into it and see what comes out. The band Skillet has gone through many changes since their forming in 1996. The current line-up is John Cooper on bass and lead vocals, Korey Cooper (John’s wife) on keyboards, rhythm guitar, and backing vocals, Ben Kasica on lead guitar, and Lori Peters on drums.

Skillet’s current album release is titled “Comatose” it was released in October of 2006. The album title, says John Cooper, is a challenge to the American Church to awaken from the sleepy apathy we have toward one another and enter into relationships with people. Not just online but face to face time. The album punches the accelerator right out of the gate with the first track “Rebirthing” about, you guessed it, being born again. I believe this is the first song where Korey Cooper’s vocals are actually heard in a big way. Her voice is fairly prominent in several songs on the album. The next track “The Last Night” is a ballad about Jesus’ love for the person who feels outcast and alone. I think John Cooper and the band have a passion for kids who are experiencing these kinds of things. I remember when they came to Lincoln, Nebraska I watched them come down from the stage after their set was done and engage kids in conversations about what was going on in their lives and how much Jesus loves them. The third track “Yours To hold” is about that special someone God has sovereignly created for you. The song’s bridge is so cool it goes:

I’m stretching but you’re just out of reach
You should know
I’m ready when you’re ready for me
And I’m waiting for the right time
For the day I catch your eye
To let you know
That I’m yours to hold

Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on September 18, 2007 in Comatose, Music Review, Skillet

 

Evangelism and the sovereignty of God (Part 1)

One of the most controversial aspects of Christianity is evangelism and the sovereignty of God. As believers we all know that we are commanded to “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations…”. (Matthew 28: 19) But understanding the sovereignty of God quite often creates a percieved paradox. In reality the bible teaches that these two doctrines are not in opposition to each other but allies. The sovereignty of God (and mind you the bible) teaches that a man is elected by God for salvation. That a man is dead in his sins and is made alive to righteousness only by the work of God. Many evangelicals claim that teaching the sovereignty of God in salvation deters Christians from evangelizing. This is actually the opposite for those who follow the doctrines of God’s sovereignty. If you understand that God is the One who saves and we are called to be obedient servants in this endeavor, we are more free to evangelize and let God do the calling.

In order to defend this doctrine and understand how to effectively evangelize I am attending an IBS (Institute for Biblical Studies) course at my local church Omaha Bible Church. Along with the bible we will also be using a book by J. I. Packer called “Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God“, go figure. The first session, which was last Wednesday, we focused on the introduction and the importance of evangelism for the believer. We were introduced to the reference materials we will be using and we went through the course syllabus.

This past Sunday I purchased “Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God” in the church bookstore and used the time during our adult bible hour to read the first couple of chapters. Packer lays the foundation of God’s sovereignty by going over some common beliefs in Christianity through prayer that are attributed to the belief in a sovereign God. When we take the time to pray to God, how do we pray? Do we pray with the belief that God will act in his sovereignty? Do we ask God to save John and Suzi down the street or do we pray that John and Suzi will figure it out for themselves and in so doing save themselves? When we pray do we ask God for our daily bread? Do we thank Him for our salvation? Indeed we do. Because deep inside we know that God is the one who saves. God is the one who sustains our life. We know through scripture that these things are true. God gives us the very breath we breathe. If God is sovereign in these things would it not hold that He is also sovereign in the salvation of men and women?

Next posting we will get into the sovereignty of God and the responsibility of man, an apparent contradiction. Rock on!

 
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Posted by on September 18, 2007 in evangelism, God's sovereignty, IBS, J. I. Packer