1. 4 Ways to Develop an “Everywhere Mentality” for Sharing the Gospel

    July 18, 2016 by Paul Chappell

    Starbucks

    I believe the Great Commission is worthy of—and even calls for—purposed times and strategic plans for spreading the gospel. Thus, we have several times and locations each week available to members of our church to meet up with a partner for the purpose of saturating our community with the gospel.

    And yet, there is a danger in using only those times for sharing the gospel.

    In reality, we are surrounded by people who need the Lord—some of which are our family, friends, coworkers, and neighbors. We want to lead them to Christ as well, even if not on a Thursday night at 6:30 or a Saturday morning at 10:00.

    Acts 8:4 tells us of the early Christians, “Therefore they that were scattered abroad went every where preaching the word.”

    How do we also develop this “everywhere mentality” where we are ready to share the gospel at all times and are seeing fruit among our friends and family?

    In my recent book, Take It Personally: A Practical Guide to Owning and Obeying the Great Commission, I suggest four ways: (more…)


  2. 5 Traits Common to Leaders Who Continue

    July 15, 2016 by Paul Chappell

    The challenges to Christian ministry continue to mount. Between a cultural shift toward intolerance of truth, the decision fatigue of pastors, the opinion overload of society, and a host of other challenges, it’s no wonder that so many pastors and spiritual leaders are falling out of the ministry.

    Although I’m aware of and experience these types of challenges, I want to finish my race still serving the Lord. And I don’t want to stagger across the finish line—depleted and embittered toward the people God has called me to serve—either. I want to finish my race in love with Christ and fully engaged in His work.

    In a previous blog, I shared the Spiritual Leadership Conference session 5 Commitments of Continuing Churches. Our goal, however, is not just to build a ministry that continues, but to personally stay in the race.

    In other words, we cannot help others to continue if we give up.

    One of the characteristics of effective leaders is a practice of personal assessment. In the Wednesday morning session of Spiritual Leadership Conference ’16, we looked at 5 principles of continuing leaders with a challenge to personally assess how we’re doing in each area.


    (watch video | download audio | download notes)

    Each of these five principles were thoroughly developed scripturally, and the lesson included many practical action items. But for an overview of the lesson, here are the five main points: (more…)


  3. 4 Reasons You Can’t Find Rest

    July 11, 2016 by Paul Chappell

    path

    One of my favorite verses is Jeremiah 6:16—“Thus saith the Lord, Stand ye in the ways, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls….”

    I’ve heard many messages from this text that emphasize everything under the sun except “rest for your souls.” But that is the promise of the verse.

    Picture the prophet Jeremiah pleading with a rebellious nation to seek out the old paths of righteousness, put away their idolatry, and walk in truth. And then he promises what the result will be: “and ye shall find rest for your souls.”

    Rest.

    Soul-deep rest.

    If we are following the “old paths,” why don’t we have rest? Well, if “old paths” are anything less than hungering for God and righteousness and walking humbly with God, they won’t lead to rest. (more…)


  4. 5 Commitments of Continuing Churches

    July 5, 2016 by Paul Chappell

    We have the absolute promise that the church will continue. Jesus plainly declared, “I will build my church” (Matthew 16:18). Thus, we have the advantage of operating from the knowledge that we are on the winning side.

    Even so, you and I both know of churches that have not continued for Christ—churches who have left off aggressively reaching the world with the gospel and dwindled to nothing or have tried to “reinvent” the church and lost their distinction and effectiveness.

    So what is the difference between a local church that continues and a church that doesn’t? What helps a church remain true to its founding doctrine and biblical in its methods?

    In a morning session of Spiritual Leadership Conference ’16, we looked at five commitments of continuing churches.


    (watch video | download audio | download notes)

    Each of these five commitments were thoroughly developed scripturally, and the lesson included many practical action items. But for an overview of the lesson, here are the five commitments: (more…)


  5. A Grave Concern for Christians in America

    June 24, 2016 by Paul Chappell

    california-capitol-building

    In current deliberation among California legislators is Senate Bill 1146. I am gravely disturbed by this bill that strikes a direct blow to religious liberty and severely infringes on personal freedoms and the freedoms of Christian institutions in California.

    The so-called “Equity in Higher Education Act” is designed to erode the free exercise of religion given us in both the United States Constitution and the California Constitution, by limiting the involvement of colleges to have students, faculty, and employees live according to the dictates of God’s Word.

    This bill reads, in part,

    “Nothing in this section shall be construed to permit discrimination on the basis of disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, nationality, race or ethnicity, sexual orientation, or any other characteristic that is contained in the definition of hate crimes set forth in Section 422.55 of the Penal Code, including the perception that the person has any of those characteristics or that the person is associated with a person who has, or is perceived to have, any of those characteristics.”

    West Coast Baptist College is staunchly opposed to this bill that erodes religious liberty and opens the door for the state to impede our purpose of “training laborers for the harvest.”

    As Bible-believing Christians, we believe that every person is made in the image of God and is thus worthy of and should be treated with respect. We welcome students of all nationalities, ethnicities, and backgrounds. We cannot, however, change our biblical convictions regarding morality and adherence to a biblical moral code.

    SB1146 purports to protect against discrimination. This bill, however, is a form of discrimination against religious liberty itself. In the words of Senator John Moorlach, “Restricting private institutions from adhering to its religious beliefs is a violation of their First Amendment rights and an act itself of intolerance.”

    The Constitution prohibits laws which impede religious and biblically-held beliefs. Christian colleges for hundreds of years, have had biblically-based codes of conduct prohibiting extra-marital sex and other activities prohibited by Scripture.

    Not only would this bill impact an institution’s ability to hire or retain staff and accept students based on faith-based practices and morality, but it would impact students themselves who wish to seek education at an institution that aligns with their beliefs. If passed as law, this bill would reach into the dorms, locker rooms, restrooms, and even the academic and spiritual programs of institutions. The bill also creates a system whereby faith-based institutions must report their beliefs before the state, in essence, for approval.

    Although West Coast Baptist College receives no funds from the state of California, we adamantly stand in opposition to SB1146 as a gross overreach of government and a direct violation of religious liberty and personal freedoms. We ask you to help us stop this bill as well.

    (more…)