Preaching at CRPC Round II

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As most of you know, I preached for about two and a half years after Dr. Kennedy went home to be with the Lord. It was my pleasure to bring the Word to the congregation. Yesterday I brought a message on the Pharisee and the Tax Collector.  You can find this just below this blog. This coming week the message will be on the parable of the “Good Samaritan” which, when properly understood is one of the most shocking parables in the Bible.

My twitter handle is @drsamlam and I will remind you as the time comes closer is you would like to follow me (no need however).

While I know that my style of preaching is not like the last pastor, I hope that the exegetical look at passages will be helpful to those who are looking for a careful examination of God’s word.

If you are reading this and happen to be at the service, please stop by the lobby after the service and tell me hello. I’d love to meet you. If you would like to set up an appointment, please email me at  slammers@knoxseminary.edu and I can send you my assistant’s information.

At this point, I am only glad that the Lord has allowed me to work on a small corner of the kingdom. I am not anywhere near the best but the Lord uses small people to do great things. For that I am thankful.

SamLam

Free Books

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I have resolved to start writing again (darn that laziness that I inherited from Adam). What better way to start than to tell you about free books?

Those of you who know me might be shocked that I am getting rid of books. While I am getting rid of some of them, most are from a “purge” of the Knox Seminary Library. We have hundreds of books that are sitting out waiting for a good home. All that you need to do is stop by during regular hours (9-5) and ask for the “free book room.” You can spend hours going through and finding some great stuff.

If you do stop by, please see if I am free to come down and see you. I would love to show you what I think are some of the great things to get.
There are lots of great things happening at Knox and I will look forward to sharing them with you in the days and weeks to come. Suffice it to say that I am AMAZED at the grace that the Lord has shown us and the wonderful place that the seminary finds itself in.

SamLam

On Pilgrims And Doors

“It is a dangerous business… going out your door. You step into the road and if you don’t keep your feet, there is no knowing where you might be swept off to.”
— Bilbo Baggins to Frodo

I believe that God sends to us the conversation partners that we need at any particular time in our life. These are often friends who help us to sort through difficult issues that we are facing. For me, however, some of my best conversation partners have been great books.

I am facing some important decisions and potential changes in my life over the next few months and I have just discovered a wonderful conversation partner. It is a brand new book calledIn Search of Deep Faith: A Pilgrimage into the Beauty, Goodness and Heart of Christianity written by Dr. Jim Belcher. The theme of the book is pilgrimage.

Dr. Belcher took his wife and four small children on a pilgrimage across England and Europe to help them experience many of the great heroes of the Christian faith. Belcher explains in the first chapter that his goal is multifaceted. He wants his children to truly embrace the Christian faith and know the stories of such people as C. S. Lewis, William Wilberforce, Corrie ten Boom, and even Maria von Trapp (from the “Sound of Music”).

But Belcher takes the pilgrimage himself as well. He wants a renewed sense of love and devotion to the Lord and seeing and experiencing the places where such great Christian men and women walked helped to bring him back to his love and away from the burnout he and his wife Michelle were facing.

The book begins with their time in Oxford and a trip to the site of the burning of Latimer, Ridley, and Cranmer. Belcher’s prose here is mesmerizing. Far from a dry history lecture, the lives of these three men come alive, and their deaths are written about with care, accuracy, and emotion.

Belcher mentions his trip up the stairs to see the representation of the cell in which Kranmer was kept until he was burned at the stake. On the way up the stairs, they pass a door which is the actual door behind which Kranmer was kept. Dr. Belcher goes on to poetically remind the reader of how important doors are to a pilgrimage.

This first chapter is both challenging (particularly for Christian parents) as well as affirming. I believe that this book will be one of the most important conversation partners of the last 15 years for me and I look forward to sharing with you more lessons from upcoming chapters.
If you would like to order the book (and I highly, highly recommend it) click on the link below. It’s a book that you should read with your entire family.

In Search of Deep Faith: A Pilgrimage into the Beauty, Goodness and Heart of Christianity

Onward,

SamLam

P.S. Full disclosure-Dr. Belcher is a colleague of mine at Knox Seminary, but a good book is a good book. And this is a great book!

Does God desire all people to enter heaven?

I’ll be teaching Sunday School at Cross Community Church this week. Each week we choose a difficult ethical question about Christianity and try to deal with it from the Scriptures.

This week we will be asking the question “Does God desire that all people go to heaven?” Of course, being Reformed, we believe that God has chosen some to salvation. How then can one believe that God makes such choices and still wants all to enter heaven? This is a question that has confounded many and not an easy one to answer. If you would like to be a part of the discussion, or just sit and listen, please make your way to the Cross this Sunday morning. We would love to see you there.

If you would like to read more about this question from a Reformed standpoint a good place to start is with John Piper’s new booklet (it is only about 50 pages). You can find it here:

Does God Desire All to Be Saved?

Blessings,
DrSamLam