Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Dr. D. James Kennedy Has Died [SK]

You can view a time-line of his life here.

His death is a huge loss for the pro-life cause. Dr. Kennedy preached a cross-centered gospel AND systematically encouraged his listeners to engage the culture on pro-life issues. Anecdotally, I will tell you that's a rare mix in reformed circles today.

If you think I'm overstating my case by calling his death a huge loss for pro-lifers, consider these questions:

1. Outside of John Piper, can you name one pastor of a large, well-known reformed church that systematically encourages his people to be culturally engaged on pro-life issues AND who chastises his fellow pastors for ignoring abortion?

2. Can you name one pastor of a large reformed church that sees to it his people are trained to defend pro-life views in the public square with people who are unchurched?

3. Take a guess: If you administered a pop-quiz to your congregation using the following 5 questions, would the results suggest your church is well-informed, somewhat informed, or largely ignorant on abortion?

--For how many months of pregnancy is abortion legal in the U.S.?
--Are you confident that you can defend the pro-life position with un-churched co-workers and friends?
--What is the pro-life argument on abortion and embryonic stem-cell research?
--Can you persuasively summarize it in 45 seconds or less?
--Can you do it without appealing to Scripture, using arguments a secular critic cannot dismiss?

I have a hunch the quiz alone would reveal the sorry state Dr. Kennedy sought to address. Thankfully, he spoke to each of those questions during the course of his preaching ministry.

Question is, how many influential AND cross-centered preachers will rise to fill the vacancy left by Dr. Kennedy?

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