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Blog Archives: September 2015

Why I Am Disappointed with Pope Francis

September 30, 2015
Chris Castaldo
Each morning last week, while Pope Francis was visiting the U.S., the Castaldo family prayed for him. Around the breakfast table our five little nippers folded their hands, while four-year-old Aliza asked God to “help Mr. Pope tell them about Jesus.” Why would an evangelical pastor and his family do this? Not because we recognize the pope as the Vicar of Christ or embrace his magisterial authority. But, as I’ve written elsewhere (and as we observed last week in Washington, New York, and Philadelphia), there is no single Christian voice that ...

Embracing and Exalting Life

September 23, 2015
Chris Castaldo
As our preaching series, Why Jesus?, reaches a conclusion, we have already considered our Lord as the "way" and "truth." On Sunday we will examine Jesus as the "life." It is the famous exchange with a Jewish leader, Nicodemus (John 3:1-15), that provides illumination to the question of where humanity realizes such life. In addition to revealing the place where it is encountered, our passage indicates indicates how Christ's life finds expression through his people. One illustration of how Christians can embody and proclaim divine life is ...

Seeing and Savoring God

September 17, 2015
Chris Castaldo
During our current preaching series at New Covenant Church, Why Jesus?, we are seeking to acquire a deeper understanding of the person and work of Christ. We are praying for this insight to drive us deeper in worship, deeper in prayer, deeper in our capacity to recognize the glory of God. It is the last of these I would like to highlight by suggesting ways we should not think about God. Toward this end, here are some popular misconceptions from J.B. Phillips’ classic book, Your God is too Small: 1. The Grand Old Man God is thought to be ...

The Original Jesus

September 10, 2015
Chris Castaldo
As we begin our three week series on Sunday, Why Jesus?, I am reflecting upon the myriad of ways humanity answers the question. Sometimes our view of Jesus emerges from ignorance. It may also grow out of fear or confusion. Increasingly, our culture answers the question with a bit of “Christophobia,” an embarrassment at our Christian past and desire to exclude Jesus from our future (as Joseph Weiler coined the term in his book A Christian Europe: An Exploratory Essay). And there are of course the many ways that we Christians also think ...

Repentance as a Precursor to Renewal

September 02, 2015
Chris Castaldo
Evangelist, church planter, and founder of Moody Bible Institute in Chicago, Dwight L. Moody (1837-1899) had a passion to proclaim the gospel to the masses. Often preaching in the slums, Moody stressed faithfully the need for repentance and the hope of salvation in Christ Jesus. Ever looking forward to the Second Advent, his life’s desire was to see revival—revival that, he believed, had to begin in the Church of God. I firmly believe that the Church of God will have to confess her own sins, before there can be any great work of grace....