Shouldn’t Faith Always Result in Healing?

(Including a list of some books on a theology of suffering)

faith healing suffering

Some people argue that “the New Testament always shows healing and never shows someone asking for healing and leaving still sick.” The Bible, however, includes examples of people who were not healed. Paul himself was not always healed. Paul himself was not always healed. He reminds the Galatians that “it was because of an illness […]

The Main Thing that Concerns Me about Joel Osteen’s Theology

Joel Osteen declare

I recognize that Joel Osteen is a great communicator (even Forbes does), and there are numerous things I appreciate about him and his ministry. Nevertheless, there is a repetitive theme in his ministry that I find troubling. And it is particularly troubling given the millions of people who listen to his sermons and assume that […]

Should Pentecostals talk about the Spirit on Pentecost Sunday?

Pentecost Sunday is coming soon. Did you even know? If you are Pentecostal, probably not. Yet, I have heard some Pentecostals complain when their pastor hasn’t mentioned Pentecost on Pentecost Sunday. Is this a problem? Not Liturgical Most Pentecostal churches I know aren’t liturgical. The closest they come to following the liturgical calendar is celebrating Christmas and Easter. […]

You Don’t Have to Say Something to Become a Christian

  “What do I need to do to become a Christian?” I asked my theology class this question today. Thankfully, no one said “invite Jesus into your heart.” Nevertheless, I was struck that their answers largely assumed that Christians have to say something to be saved—for example, say a prayer where you confess your sin, […]

Mental Health as an Indicator of Your Relationship with God?

Mental Health God

Does having anxiety/depression mean that you are not good with God? (asked by a student) Very unlikely. First, if the answer were “yes,” this would mean that mental health is only a spiritual issue, which it is not. Rather, our mental health is shaped by “a complex interplay of genetic, biological, personality and environmental factors” […]

On Training Competent Pastors: A Professor’s Perspective

Many pastors in North America have complained that the college or seminary that they attended didn’t adequately prepare them for the realities of pastoral ministry—when they graduated, they didn’t feel competent for all aspects of the “job.” Hence, last year, Horizon College & Seminary (where I teach!) made a significant change from time-based education (i.e., […]