Thursday, May 22, 2008

Session #8: Ed Stetzer

Ed has planted churches in New York, Pennsylvania, and Georgia and transitioned declining churches in Indiana and Georgia. He has trained pastors and church planters on five continents, holds two masters degrees and two doctorates, and has written dozens of articles and books. Ed served for three years as a seminary professor at the Southern Seminary in Louisville, Kentucky and has taught at 15 other seminaries. He is currently the Director of Lifeway Research and Lifeway’s Missiologist in Residence.

Compelling idea: moving through doubt to faith

Thomas the doubter is best known for asking questions and being a skeptic, yet went further to spread the gospel than any of the Apostles. Church history holds that Thomas traveled as far as India w/the gospel.

Most pastors/church planters go through seasons of doubt.

Thomas was honest enough to ask the questions and make his doubts known. He was willing to believe, yet he just didn't get it...and he was willing to admit it to Jesus.

If we as ministers would be honest with our doubts and times when we just don't get it we would so happier. The Christian life is not marked by continual happiness. There is trauma and stress and miscellaneous events of life that spring up.

God is not disappointed with our questions. We need not fear when questions and doubt creep in.

John 20 -

God is in heaven, not to ensure that we have our best life now, but to save lost people through His Son's sacrifice on the cross, so that they can have eternal life with Him.

Thomas doubted, he asked questions, and he came to faith as he declared, "My Lord and my God."