John Paul Todd's Blog (37)

In Memory of Nilson Fanini (1932-2009)

Recently learned of the passing of Nilson Fanini, an outstanding Brazilian Baptist Pastor in the Rio de Janeiro area. He was called the "Billy Graham of Brazil", partly because he served as the interpreter when Billy came to Brazil for a evangelistic campaign and partly because in his own right, he was an outstanding evangelist himself.

He not only greatly impacted the churches in Brazil but also around the world serving as President of the Baptist World Alliance. He died while… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on April 26, 2010 at 11:30am — No Comments

How do you observe the Last Supper?

So many things happened that last evening with the disciples. On the very night in which our Lord was betrayed and drug off to the authorities like a common criminal. A new commandment and a new observance were among the most precious things we have recorded for us that evening. The "Upper Room Discourse" recorded only by the Apostle John has always been one my favorite passages of all the Bible.

The center of everything is the supper and the words Jesus spoke to his disciples…


Added by John Paul Todd on April 1, 2010 at 12:00pm — 5 Comments

The Best of Christmas Music

This time of year I am amazed more and more how much of the Gospel is heard publically in our American society. That is my main criteria for 'best' regarding the Christmas music. Does it carry the Biblical message of the Gospel? And I have to say that down through the years the conviction has grown that the all-time standard was set with Handel's Messiah. The Libretto portion of Messiah is all Scripture and was put together in such a way that is true to the Biblical narrative; in its entirety… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on December 22, 2009 at 10:30am — 1 Comment

Words from The Fire

A New Book about "Hearing the Voice of God in the Ten Commandments".

Al Mohler, President of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, has written a book that I've been waiting for for a long, long time. In my opinion, it just may be the best book in our generation on the Ten Commandments. Imagine my great delight when I began reading and realized that Mohler was committed to seeing these famous Biblical words from the Old Testament from the perspective of the New… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on October 3, 2009 at 8:00am — 1 Comment

A gift for SimpleChurch on Labor Day

Meditating on the Prayer Book of the Bible

I was lamenting a low point in my experience with the SBC yesterday. It was the Lifeway Sunday School material that is used by a majority of churches in the Convention and the Adult material for the fall quarter on Psalms. The first lesson on Psalm 19 had what only could be called "The Great Omission". Christ, the hero of the Biblical narrative, was completely left out! He was not only left out of the student's manual, but also of the… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on September 7, 2009 at 10:30am — 2 Comments

May God have Mercy on the ELCA

Pray for them with true compassion. By now you may have heard of the recent decisions of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America's regarding formal acceptance of those with a homosexual life style as Ministers in the ELCA. I hope you received this news with deep grief and not in any way gloating over one more IC that has all but removed itself from Biblical Christianity. It will help us tremendously if we resist the temptation to say as one of my beloved Black Reformed Baptist pastors said… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on August 27, 2009 at 7:00am — No Comments

A Book Praising the IC

A Case Study in 'How Not to Treat Your Fellow Christians".

My son gave me a couple of books to read over the week-end about the emerging church movement. The one I'm referring to above is, in my opinion, a very hostile and negative response to the emergent church movement and in particular house-churches. It's full title is-"Why WE love the Church: In Praise of Institutions and organized Religion", by Kevin DeYoung and Ted Kluck. Kevin is Ted's pastor and they belong to the RCA- the… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on August 25, 2009 at 3:30pm — No Comments

The Function of Teacher in the Churches

How does it function in your house church?

I think this is one of the most urgent discussions we can be having here at SimpleChurch-how the New Testament function of teaching is meant to be realized in every local assembly. I've placed my own comments out in the open at my Wordpress blog and won't repeat them here.

One of the sunday school curriculum's used by thousands of SBChurches is studying the book of James this quarter.Next Sunday's lesson happens to be on… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on August 11, 2009 at 11:30am — 1 Comment

The Story of Lutherans in America

This is a fascinating story, a bit of American history you may not be familiar with. My maternal side of the family trace their begining in America to 1764 and the arrival in Philadelphia of Laurence Jung from Germany. He married another German immigrant and they began their family living with a colony of other Germans in the 'hinterland' of Pennsylvania. That whole chunk of history is usually left out of our history but was one of the not-to-bright chapters leading up to the American… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on July 20, 2009 at 6:43am — No Comments

Do We Need An Interpreter?

An honest question for SimpleChurch folk.

Anyone who has ever been on a mission trip to a region of the world where English is not spoken, probably has been obliged to rely on the help of an interpreter who understands both English and the local language of the people you wish to minister the Word of God. People everywhere want to hear God speak to them "in their own tongue". That's one reason why the work of Bible translation and especially Wycliffe Bible Translators for many… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on June 24, 2009 at 8:00am — No Comments

On Celebrating Calvin's 500th Birthday

An Opportunity to glimpse 500 years of IC History

No doubt you have heard something of the celebrations now underway marking the birth of one of Protestantism's most influential individuals, John Calvin. So what does that have to do with us here at SimpleChurch? As Paul once said, "much in every way". Let me try to suggest a few things.

First of all, placing him in his context regarding the Protestant Reformation will give us some much needed sense of both our… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on June 19, 2009 at 5:50am — No Comments

The Story of GOD'S Mighty Acts

Keeping the Fire Burning

I'm afraid that all of us are often guilty of celebrating something on its designated day, and then quickly going on with the business of life and soon forgetting the reason for the celebration. In my opinion there are just a few dates that the Church on earth can not afford ever be far from our minds. Such celebrations as the Birthday of King Jesus, his crucifixion, ressurection, and PENTECOST.

So in order to hold the memory and the… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on June 4, 2009 at 8:00am — No Comments

The Kingdom Mandate

For All Churches: Home-based and IC Alike!

With any new movement or crusade or ideological agenda, the intensity of the emotional and spiritual energy can often cause people to lose objectivity that comes from keeping a big enough perspective. The twentieth century brought a fantastic advance of the Missio Dei in the world and that is something that simply must be kept in its proper place: the Church universal and her mission or mandate from God.

I rejoice as much… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on June 1, 2009 at 6:31pm — No Comments

The Plan of God- J.I.Packer

Now This is An Evangelistic Booklet

When I was just getting started in my Biblical education, the Lord brought into my life J.I.Packer. I think the first book of his that I was required to read was , "Fundamentalism and The Word of God", first published in 1958 when Packer was only 32. I soon learned to look for anything he wrote. I liked the way he wrote and I finally adopted him as a worthy theological guide to refer to often. A number of Theologian-pastors who are… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on May 28, 2009 at 3:55pm — No Comments

Are You Ready to Celebrate PENTECOST?

Pentecost for me is just as important as 1) Celebrating the BIRTH of Christ, 2) The Crucifixion, the Resurrection, and the Ascension. Without Pentecost, the entire plan of the New Covenant would not have been "applied" to God's people. You can imagine then my grief over the years when I realized that many of the Churches in America didn't even observe the day. We will celebrate Memorial Day (the day before), but not Pentecost:What's wrong with this picture?

This year Pentecost falls… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on May 26, 2009 at 3:30pm — 5 Comments

The Joy of Worshipping in God's House

Good Monday Morning Saints

I hope you had the unspeakable JOY and privilege of assembling with the congregation of Saints to start the new week. I have been having a spiritual ball adding to my public archive at I had seen reference to the sight in passing, but you know how these things go right past your screen until the Lord makes it personal. Well it became personal when my son David was sent to Iraq this month.

His family gave him a love gift as he… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on May 18, 2009 at 7:56am — No Comments

Have You Read THIS Book?

Neil Carter won another endorsement for his best seller, "Christ In Y"All". I have to say that I'm not surprised at all nor the source of the endorsement; it really is filled with a lot of Biblical wisdom. See my first post on the book, "The Only other Book You Will Ever Need".

I was talking only this week to a new friend in Christ in Brazil about… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on May 14, 2009 at 8:30pm — No Comments

God's Magnetic Points

The Hound of Heaven is drawing us to Himself.

Have you ever pondered why we are so hungry for true love and community? No matter who we are or where on earth we find ourselves, there are basic instincts, basic longings that point us to God and His promise of a perfectly restored humanity in Christ.

I posted one year ago at my wordpress blog, a very interesting essay which I found in my "toolbag" written by a Dutch missiologist named J.H.Bavinck. The essay was from a… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on May 6, 2009 at 5:56am — No Comments

Controversy Can Be Good

In Fact, in a hostile world, it's unavoidable. One of the most controversial forms of evangelism is the one practised by the JEWS for JESUS missionaries. For 35+ years they have boldly entered the strongholds of Jewish populations insisting on evangelizing their own people. When I was pastoring in a heavily Jewish area, Mount Vernon, New York, we had some converted Jews in our congregation and we hosted a Jews for Jesus event. I will remember it for the rest of my life on earth. We can learn a… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on April 29, 2009 at 5:30am — 8 Comments

The Only Other Book You Will Ever Need

BESIDES THE BIBLE, that is. This was the bold claim that I found just this week surfing some old stuff that's been put on-line. Remember the "Dead Poet's Society"? Well a lot of us are members of the "Dead Theologians Society". The "only other book" referred to in this document was the classic book by John Gresham Machen who was ordained to the Presbyterian ministry in 1914. After he was forced out of the faculty at Princeton Theologial Seminary in 1929 because of his struggle with… Continue

Added by John Paul Todd on April 28, 2009 at 8:00am — 3 Comments

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