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A Detailed Response to Doug Brown’s Critique of the FICM

Doug Brown has joined a long list of pastors, professors, bloggers, theologians, and otherwise interested parties in writing a critique of the Family Integrated Church Movement (FICM).1   This critique comes from a “Fundamental Independent Baptist” perspective.  His motivation is the fact that “The (FICM) is having a growing impact within fundamental Baptist churches.”  Brown notes: Since the mid-1990s an increasing number of families within fundamental churches have gravitated toward the family-integrated approach. In addition, families entrenched in the movement have been drawn to fundamental churches because of their emphasis on Biblical preaching and conservatism.”2 And of course, like ...

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Question of the Month: April 2011

"How does the doctrine of the Sufficiency of Scripture mesh with Paul's acknowledgment of disputable matters (Romans 14:1) and Jesus promise that the Holy Spirit will lead us into all truth (John 16:12-15)? To give specific application to some of the issues you frequently address: Is it possible that God has led, and will lead, some parents (based on a myriad of factors that only God can truly know, judge, and specifically address) to send their child to the local public school? Is it possible that the Holy Spirit actually does call some men into Youth Ministry ...

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Sam Waldron’s Open Letter On The FIC (Repost In Response To Challies)

A few days ago, Tim Challies posted a link to Sam Waldron’s article on the “Family Based Church Movement” (note:  Challies used the term Family Integrated Church in his post) released on the Reformed Baptist Fellowship blog.  Since Challies, one of the most respected bloggers in the Reformed Christian camp, refers to the article as “a useful critique of some of the tenets of the Family Integrated Church movement,” his post has set off another wave of inaccurate, prejudicial, well-worn, asked-and-answered straw man attacks against all things FIC (I’m not sure that “Family of Families” straw man can ...

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Response to Andreas Köstenberger on the FIC

Let me start by saying that I am a fan of Andreas Köstenberger.  I have not only read God, Marriage and Family; I have led small groups in our church using the book.  It is one of the most thorough, biblical treatments of the topic available in our day.  And I believe it will stand the test of time.    I have also read the new edition (read it online here), and I must say that while I am pleased with the updates, I am both disappointed and saddened by his section on the Family Integrated Church.  When I heard ...

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Sam Waldron’s Open Letter on the FIC

Back in September, Sam Waldron wrote an article on the Family Integrated Church that set off a firestorm of criticism of the “movement” within Reformed Baptist circles and beyond.  Many of our opponents relished the thought of a respected scholar taking the FIC to task.  As a result, many linked to the article, drew unwarranted conclusions, and/or used it as validation for their criticisms.    Recently, Dr. Waldron wrote an open letter commenting on his blog post.  I am heartened by Sam’s words, and more so by his pursuit of truth, clarity, and charity in this discussion.  His letter ...

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Whitehorse inn on Discipleship and Youth Ministry

You absolutely MUST listen to the White Horse Inn’s podcast on Discipleship!  These guys have talked around the Youth Ministry/Intergenerational Discipleship issue for a while now, but this recent broadcast hit the nail on the head.  I could not believe what I was hearing.  Remember, these are not FIC guys.  Nevertheless, they have identified the problems inherent in age-segregated ministry.  At one point Ken Jones says point blank that “the only place we see [systematic age grading] is in the public schools.”  Again, I am not saying these guys are on the FIC side of the ledger.  In ...

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New GFBC Church Plant in North Houston (Part Three)

Although we have little doubt that there is a need for new church plants, we are not Naïve concerning the potential advantages and disadvantages of launching a new work.   As such, we are trying to walk into this endeavor with our eyes wide open.  We are also working hard to minimize the disadvantages maximize the advantages.  Nevertheless, there are risks involved. Potential Disadvantages of Planting a New Church One disadvantage of planting a new church is loss of momentum and continuity we may experience.  We have seen God’s life-transforming work among us.  People are being converted, marriages are ...

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New GFBC Church Plant in North Houston (Part Two)

The Need for New Churches Of all the options available to us --multiple services, bigger buildings, satellites, and church plants-- we have chosen to plant a new church. As stated in part one, it is not our contention that all of the other options are necessarily wrong in every circumstance, but that they are less than ideal for what we wish to accomplish. The Demographic Need There are over 2.5 million unchurched people in the greater Houston area. This is a fact lost on most people because of the sheer number and size of the churches in our city ...

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New GFBC Church Plant in North Houston (Part One)

Word is out about the new GFBC church plant that is scheduled to launch January 31, 2010.  GFBC launched on April 7, 2006, just over three and a half years ago.  However, since then, we have seen significant growth.  Most of that growth has occurred in the past year.  A year ago we had a little over 140 members, and our average Sunday morning attendance was about 220.  This October, our membership is about 250, and our average attendance is between 420 and 450.  Of course, these are not significant numbers for churches in our area.  Houston is home to ...

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The Continuing Collapse: October 2009 Bonus

By Bruce N. Shortt, J.D., Ph.D. WELCOME TO THE CONTINUING COLLAPSE!    Exposing Government Schools: The Youth Ministry of the State Church of Secular Humanism     October, Anno Domini 2009   "Politics is the art of looking for trouble, finding it, misdiagnosing it, and then misapplying the wrong remedies." (Groucho Marx)   Here richly, with ridiculous display,The Politician's corpse was laid away. While all of his acquaintance sneered and slanged I wept: for I had longed to see him hanged. (Hilaire Belloc)  MORE ON KEVIN JENNINGS:  BRINGING NAMBLA ELEMENTARY TO YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD In its never-ending quest to be of practical ...

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