Community Pool: A Weekly Collection April 7

First, an article by our pastor, Dr. Bill Barcley.

The Bible Commands Christians to Tithe

Dr. Barcley writes, “Does the Bible command Christians to tithe and, if so, is the baseline 10 percent as expressed in the Old Testament? I believe the answer is yes. The tithe is essential for holiness, vital for the ongoing work of Christ’s church, and required for receiving God’s blessing.

My argument, in a nutshell, is this: The requirement to tithe preceded the Mosaic law, was codified in it with ceremonial aspects added, and was affirmed by Jesus as binding on his followers.”

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Young, Restless, and Reformed in China

In a country where religious practice outside of official TSPM churches is technically illegal, Reformed theology “is clearly a rapidly growing influential movement,” said Bruce Baugus, a Reformed Theological Seminary professor who wrote a book on it. And while some TSPM members espouse Reformed thinking—and Reformed titles are selling like hot cakes from official TSPM bookstores—most of the growth has come in unregistered churches.

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In Defense of Second-Class Missionaries

I’m all about strategy in missions, and it’s important for churches to be careful in their vetting process of potential missionaries. But can we expand our idea of what strategy means? Missionaries, as an extension of the Church, must function as the Body of Christ. Could the Western Church function by only hiring evangelists? I realize that mission work can have different goals than churches back at home: Missionaries are working ourselves out of a job; they are doing everything they can to replace themselves with national believers. But to get there, they need the Body of Christ.

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The Jihadi Who Turned to Jesus

When 22 Christian refugees gathered in the basement of an apartment in Istanbul early on a recent Sunday afternoon, it was quickly clear that this was no ordinary prayer meeting. Several of them had Islamic names. There was an Abdelrahman and even a couple of Mohammads. Strangest of all, they jokingly referred to their host — one of the two Mohammads — as an irhabi. A terrorist.

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Credo Magazine: Celebrating Reformation 500 Years Later

The year 2017 marks the 500 anniversary of the Protestant Reformation. The reformer who ignited this Reformation was none other than Martin Luther. But who was Luther, why was his understanding of God’s grace so radically different than Rome’s, and what was his contribution to the Reformation as a whole? These are the type of questions this new issue of Credo Magazine, “Luther at 500,” aims to answer as we turn our attention not only to Luther’s life but to Luther’s doctrine.

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Why We’re Teaching Our Children Hymns

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This is an amazing video that you must watch.  It will lead you to worship our God and Creator.

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