Archive for November, 2010


Nov 9

Clarus 2010: Q&A with Randy Alcorn and Wayne Grudem Recap

2010 | by Trent Hunter | Category: Clarus 10

Over the last two months we’ve sprinkled the blog with videos from Ryan Kelly’s question and answer session with Randy Alcorn and Wayne Grudem from Clarus 2010. Below are links to the videos under the major headings we used for our recent Clarus 2010 Q&A blog series.

Questions about Creating Money

Questions about Spending Money

Questions about Giving Money

Questions about Investing Money

Questions about Slavery, Poverty, and Evangelicalism

Questions about Gender Issues, Dividing Issues, and Parenting

If you missed the plenary sessions (or want to re-listen), the audio to this, as well as the previous year’s conference weekends, is on the DSC/Clarus website.

Nov 6

Getting Connected with the Body at DSC

2010 | by Trent Hunter | Category: Administrative

As the body of Christ, we mean to be with one another at various times and in various ways to do the kinds of things that “make the body grow so that it builds itself up in love” (Ephesians 4:16). But how and when to get connected is not necessarily intuitive. If a family of two has a central calendar and rhythms of communication, how much more important is clear and purposeful communication for the family of God.

What follows is a list of the various channels and contexts for connecting with the body at DSC. Some of these are less obvious than others. For example, the Calendar Card, Prayer Force email, E-Newsletter, and Facebook Page are useful but not as obvious as the Sunday Bulletin or the DSC Website.

Connecting on Sunday:

  • The Sunday Bulletin communicates the church’s vision, a welcome to visitors, the current week’s schedule, and critical information about upcoming ministry opportunities.
  • The Communication Card attached to the bulletin gives you an opportunity to communicate your need for prayer or an interest in getting involved.
  • The Calendar Card helps you plan your month and year around important DSC dates, including Lord’s Suppers, membership classes, conferences, retreats, camps, Saturday Seminars, and mission trips.
  • The Kiosks and Information Center located in the foyer are primary ways to learn about and express interest in the various ministries at DSC.
  • The DSC Directory is available for $5 at the Information Center and helps us connect with one another throughout the week and pray for one another by name.
  • The Newcomers Reception is hosted on the  last Sunday of each month in the West Wing as an opportunity for newcomers to connect with DSC’s leadership and learn more about the church.

Connecting on the Web:

  • The DSC Website is our online home for ministry information, announcements, sermon audio, online giving, recommended web links, and books.
  • The DSC Blog includes follow-up posts to Sunday sermons, ministry spotlights, videos from our annual Clarus conference, quotes, etc.
  • Sign up for the Prayer Force Email list by emailing dscprayerforce@gmail.com to submit prayer requests and subscribe to the prayer email.
  • Sign up for the E-Newsletter through the bulletin Communication Card to receive a monthly summary of what’s happening at DSC.
  • DSC’s Facebook Page and Twitter Feed stream DSC announcements and links.
  • Of course, Email is always a good way to connect with staff and leaders and these are available on DSC’s website. Email the church office at info@desertspringschurch.org.

Connecting Face-to-Face:

  • Knowing Christ, Knowing the Church (KCKC) is DSC’s membership class offered three times annually. Sign up for KCKC at the Information Center on Sunday mornings or by emailing carolyn@desertspringschurch.org.
  • Community Groups meet weekly in homes throughout the Albuquerque area and are DSC’s main vehicle for discipleship at DSC outside of our Sunday worship services.
  • Lord’s Supper gatherings take place at 6:30 PM on the last Wednesday of every month. At 5:30 PM the youth ministry hosts a church-wide meal in the youth room.
  • Leadership Seminars are offered twice a year for those interested in serving in leadership roles throughout DSC.
  • Women’s Bible Studies meet for thirteen week sessions in the Fall, Spring and Summer to Study and encourage one another in the Word.
  • Men’s Huddles meet on Thursday, Friday and Saturday mornings at 6 AM to study Scripture and pray.
  • Paradox Student Ministry is a ministry for students 6-12th grade and their parents every Wednesday night in the youth room, and Sunday mornings during the second service.

Nov 4

A Primer on Church Discipline

2010 | by Trent Hunter | Category: The Church

At our last Lord’s Supper gathering, Ryan preached on the subject of church discipline in his sermon, “A Redemptive Judgment.” In a sentence, church discipline is that loving process whereby God, through his people, addresses us in our sin for our restoration to him, to his people and for his glory. Matthew 18:15-20 is the most specifically descriptive Scriptural text regarding church discipline, outlining a process of restoration that begins with personal confrontation and ends with removal from the church, if there is no repentance across a careful process involving the whole church. Along with preaching and the sacraments (Lord’s Supper and Baptism), this commitment to accountability and reservation is an historic and certainly biblical mark of the church.

9Marks ministries has done a good job of promoting, explaining, and defending this important practice for God’s people. Jonathan Leeman has written a helpful introduction to the subject, entitled, “A Church Discipline Primer.” Here’s his introduction:

What would you think of a coach who instructs his players but never drills them? Or a math teacher who explains the lesson but never corrects her students’ mistakes? Or a doctor who talks about health but ignores cancer?

You would probably say that all of them are doing half their job. Athletic training requires instructing and drilling. Teaching requires explaining and correcting. Doctoring requires encouraging health and fighting disease. Right?

Okay, what would you think about a church that teaches and disciples but doesn’t practice church discipline? Does that make sense to you? I assume it makes sense to many churches, because every church teaches and disciples, but so few practice church discipline. The problem is, making disciples without discipline makes as much sense as a doctor who ignores tumors.

I understand the reluctance to practice church discipline. It’s a difficult matter for any number of reasons. Still, this reluctance to practice church discipline, a reluctance that many of us probably feel, may suggest that we believe ourselves to be wiser and more loving than God. God, after all, “disciplines those he loves”; and “he punishes everyone he accepts as a son” (Heb. 12:6). Do we know better than God?

God disciplines his children for the sake of their life, growth, and health: God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness” (Heb. 12:10). Yes, it’s painful, but it pays off: “No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it” (Heb. 12:11). A harvest of righteousness and peace! That’s a beautiful picture.

Church discipline ultimately leads to church growth, just as pruning a rose bush leads to more roses. Said another way, church discipline is one aspect of Christian discipleship. Notice that the words “disciple” and “discipline” are etymological cousins. Both words are taken from the realm of education, which involves teaching andcorrection. Not surprisingly, there’s a centuries-old practice of referring to “formative discipline” and “corrective discipline.”

My goal in this primer is to introduce the reader to the basics of corrective church discipline—the “what,” the “when,” the “how,” and a few more words on the “why.”

Read the whole article here (and note that the article is two pages).

Nov 1

Questions about Gender Issues, Dividing Issues, and Parenting (Clarus 2010, Q&A Grudem/Alcorn, Part 6)

2010 | by Trent Hunter | Category: Clarus 10

This is the sixth and final post from Ryan Kelly’s Question and Answer discussion with guests, Wayne Grudem and Randy Alcorn at Clarus 2010 (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, Part 5).

What has been the effect of your writing on Gender issues?


What issues should Christians divide over?


What would you say to young families about parenting?


What is your typical day like?