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Resources by David Strain

Dr. David Strain was born in Glasgow, Scotland. He holds degrees from Duncan Jordanstone College of Art, Trinity College Glasgow/School of Divinity, the Free Church of Scotland College in Edinburgh, and Reformed Theological Seminary in Jackson. He was ordained to the gospel ministry in the Free Church of Scotland in September 2003, and has held pastoral charges in London, England, and Columbus, MS. Since May 2013, David has served on the pastoral staff of First Presbyterian Church in Jackson and was installed as Senior Minister in May 2014. He was awarded a Doctor of Ministry degree from Reformed Theological Seminary (Jackson) in 2016.

The Gospel of Mark

We are continuing to work through Mark’s gospel; we are at the eighteenth verse. This is now the third, fourth, of five episodes that Mark recounts together like this to explain the escalating friction, conflict, between Jesus and the religious establishment of His day – the scribes and the Pharisees. Back in chapter 2:1-12, Jesus has healed a paralyzed man and in the course of His engagement with...

The Gospel of Mark

If you were with us a few Sundays ago when last we looked together at Mark’s gospel, you will remember how with the healing of the paralyzed man, which is the story in the opening twelve verses of Mark chapter 2, a controversy begins between Jesus and the Pharisees. The Lord Jesus pronounced a word of forgiveness over the paralyzed man and the Pharisees were deeply offended. They...

The Gospel of Mark

We are going to examine the passage under three headings. First, in verses 1 through 5, I want you to notice the reach of grace. The reach of grace. Just how far, how deeply does it penetrate? How far does it go? What is the reach of grace as we see the paralyzed man lowered down in front of Jesus? The reach of grace. Then secondly, 6 through...

The Gospel of Mark

This is a passage that is honestly quite hard for us to understand in our relatively clean, relatively healthy, relatively affluent time and place. We have no sense of the horror that an infectious skin disease like leprosy evoked in the days when Jesus ministered in Galilee. And so one of the great dangers, as we read this passage, is to read these six verses and to see...

This is one of the great New Testament passages on the nature of the Christian ministry, especially the work of preaching. If you scan over the text before us you’ll see the different synonyms that Paul uses for preaching. Verse 2, look at the passage with me; 1 Thessalonians chapter 2 verse 2. “We had boldness in our God to declare to you the gospel of God.” Verse...

The Gospel of Mark

You might say that this part of the chapter reads a bit like a sort of a journalistic documentary, you know, as the camera follows Jesus across the course of one whole day; one twenty-four-hour period. If you trace back to verse 21 for a moment you will see that the passage we considered last week begins on the Sabbath morning. And then, verse 29, He went directly...

The Gospel of Mark

Mark, in this opening chapter, you will remember, is introducing us to the ministry of the Lord Jesus that was beginning in the region of Galilee. In verses 14 and 15, we saw a marvelous little summary of the content of His preaching. He told all who heard Him that “the kingdom is at hand.” The King has come. The kingdom was breaking into the world, invading the...

The Gospel of Mark

And in some ways, you could say that the remainder of chapter 1 is an explanation of how that works out, what it looks like, what are the implications of this Gospel that has broken onto the scene of history good news in the person of Jesus. What will it mean for our lives? And so in verses 16 through 20, we see what it looks like, what...

Affliction in Verse

But in this penultimate section of the book, all of that is about to change. Now the whirlwind has begun to blow. This is no longer a discussion, you see, about God; now, suddenly, God Himself begins to speak. And Job has at least something of an answer. You will remember that Job has been longing for this moment. He has been lamenting and complaining that God would...

The Gospel of Mark

Today, however, we begin to consider Jesus’ ministry itself in a more direct fashion. And it’s fascinating, I think, I wonder if you’ll agree, that when Mark sets out to describe Jesus’ public ministry, the first thing he does is give us a summary of his preaching. Here’s why I think that’s important. As we read through Mark’s gospel and we ask the question, “Why did Jesus come...

Affliction in Verse

Alright, so you see his position. “A pox on both your houses. You’re all wrong.” He adopts that tertium quid, that third way. He has an alternative perspective for us. And in chapters 33 through 37, he outlines that third way in answer to Job’s sufferings. Essentially, he sets out to deal with three complaints that Job himself has articulated over the course of his debate with his...

Affliction in Verse

One of my favorite Presbyterian stories that I often use when we celebrate one of our children reciting the catechism was told by B.B. Warfield, the great 19th  century Princeton theologian. You’ve heard it from me now more than once, but I needed an illustration, and since I couldn’t think of any except this one, you’re going to hear it from me again. Warfield tells the story of...

The Gospel of Mark

This morning, we turn to another part of the beginnings of Mark’s gospel as he sets the stage for the work that Jesus will perform. We’ll be thinking about His baptism and His temptation. These five verses are characteristic of the way Mark likes to write. They’re very terse and direct in the way they retell the story. If you look at Matthew’s account or Luke’s account you’ll...

Affliction in Verse

Now if you would take a Bible and turn with me to the book of Job as we continue our overview of the teaching of the book of Job. You remember the situation. Job is suffering terribly and his three friends, Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar, have showed up and after seven days of sitting in silence, they've begun to offer their point of view, their perspective, to try...

The Gospel of Mark

According to the ancient traditions of the church, John Mark, the author of Mark’s gospel, served the church in Rome with the apostle Peter. And Mark wrote down, after Peter died, the substance of his catechesis, his teaching. And that became the first of the gospels. So when Mark wrote Mark’s gospel, he was writing something entirely novel and new. No one had ever written a gospel before...

Rewire

And so as we think together about chapter 16, we’re thinking about living out the Christian faith in the real world, and in particular, in the fellowship of the local church. We’re going to see four themes. The first, if you’re taking notes and you’re looking for an outline, here it is. The first theme, verses 1 through 4, Paul teaches us about money and the church of...

Affliction in Verse

Last Sunday evening, we began the second cycle of speeches that comprise the large, central section of the book of Job. This is round two, if you like. And so last time in chapter 15, remember, Eliphaz had his second swing at Job. And tonight, we’re going to hear a second time from Bildad and again from Zophar; Bildad in chapter 18, Zophar in chapter 20. And our...

Rewire

And in verses 50 through 58, which is our passage this morning, as Paul draws his argument about the resurrection to a conclusion, we’re going to watch him transition. There are three types of argument that he makes here. That is, a word of explanation in verses 50 through 53 where he urges the Corinthians to comprehend the truth at last. Then, there’s a word of celebration in...

Affliction in Verse

As we have read through the book of Job together, we have been confronted with the nature of Job's trials, his loss, and his grief. We need to keep those in our minds, especially as the book unfolds. We ought never to overlook his physical pains – his illness, his acute suffering in his body. But the major attention of the book, as we get into these central...

Affliction in Verse

And you remember the situation. Job has become the object of Satan’s attacks under the mysterious permission of the sovereign Lord. His children are dead, his wife has deserted him, his home and his business lie in ruins, his health has collapsed; he’s left sitting in the ashes of his former life, mourning and pouring out his confusion before God as he scrapes the sores on his skin...

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