Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Tim Keller and CJ Mahaney - Where Should I Begin?

This past Sunday while on vacation, my family worshipped at Calvary Baptist Church, in Oshawa. This church is dear to my heart because this is where I became a Christian in 1996! What a blessing to be back as a visitor and to see the work not only continuing on, but being so vibrant! After the worship service I got talking to Jon Stairs, who is the associate pastor of adult ministries at the church. We shared an appreciation for the ministry of John Piper, and he added that he'd really like to listen to Tim Keller and CJ Mahaney. He'd just read a very helpful book by Keller and he's heard a lot about CJ Mahaney. Those two men happen to be very influential 'mentors from afar' of mine, so today I wrote him an e-mail, pointing him to the best places to begin in each man's ministry. I've copied/pasted the relevant portion of that e-mail below. . .because I wanted to share this with more than just one pastor!

Tim Keller trained the church planter I interned under in Toronto about 10 years ago. He is among the most insightful preachers I've listened to, especially when it comes to engaging postmodern people with the gospel. His church charges for sermon downloads, but an assortment of free stuff can be found here. The single most helpful three part series is called 'smashing false idols' - the most insightful series I've ever heard. . .really! His lectures on preaching Christ in a postmodern world (DMin class) are also on there - about half-way down the page. I wrote a review of the class here - scroll down to 'book reviews' and download the pdf. My review is the second of two in that document. The site is a pastor's fellowship I attend monthly.

CJ Mahaney is a charismatic Calvinistic baptistic (i. e. walking contradiction) pastor who I really appreciate. The best messages by him are as follows: at the Together for the gospel conference he spoke 'the pastor watching his life as a part of a pastoral team' here, and 'the pastor's joy in an imperfect flock' here. His messages on humility are also second to none - see them here. He has a book on the topic that I simply love.

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