This is my third blog discussing the T4G conference (Technically forth, if you count the overview). You can find my blogs on Mark Dever and H.B. Charles, Jr or David Platt and Matt Chandler in the respective links. The reason that I am doing these overviews in this way is two-folded: the first is that it reminds me of what was said. In order to write these blogs, I must look over my notes. This revivifies (as Chandler might say) what happened and thus I can take it to heart once again. It also gives me the opportunity to share what was meaningful to me and hope to hear back from you as to what was meaningful to you: an iron sharpening iron kind of thing. This morning I write on Kevin DeYoung and Dr. Al Mohler.
Kevin DeYoung’s sermon was quite different than most T4G sermons; in fact, it was completely different than any sermon I recall at T4G and I’ve gone since its inception. This was a very heady, put-on-your-thinking-cap kind of sermon. It was pulled off in a very Kevin DeYoung fashion, and done quite well, but boy my brain was tired at the end of it. I can only imagine how long of a nap he needed after delivering that beauty. One of our church’s deacons declared it to be his favorite sermon of the conference. It was good; that is true.
The concept that DeYoung brought to the table and expounded upon was the very fact that God is distinct from the world. He was immutable (unchangeable), which has once again become taboo among scholars, if it ever ceased to be. One of the great lines from this sermon came soon after he began: “If we cannot know Him fully we must strive to know Him truly.” Amen to that. We must strive to know God as He has revealed Himself even if He is infinite and can never be fully known. And one of the things that Scripture teaches is that “There is no becoming in God.” God simply is. He does not become. “The difference between being and becoming is that of being Creator and creature.”
Kevin DeYoung’s sermon was one of the best, and it is definitely a sermon to listen to over and over again. Don’t worry if you don’t catch it all the first time. It’s there on the internet to listen to again…after you’ve given the brain a break.
Moving on to Dr. Al Mohler’s sermon: I must say that this was one of the most animated Al Mohler sermons I have seen and heard. I remember first going to the T4G conferences and Dr. Mohler’s sermons seemed to be way over my head. Either I have grown or he has made his sermons more accessible, but his last two T4G sermons: I have gotten a lot out of them. In this case, Dr. Mohler was preaching from 1 Corinthians 5:1-6:11. This is not often the text of a conference sermon, but it was that day. His point was crystal clear: we must have clarity about the gospel and we must have clarity about the church. “Sin tolerated in the church is a disaster to the church, the gospel, and to Christ.” He was clear about the way to solve the issue as well, “One of the most urgent needs is for every pastor to teach the whole counsel of God including the theology of the body.”
Dr. Mohler is always able to see what is coming in the life of the church, not because he is a prophet, but because he studies the church like nobody’s business. He can see the signs that everyone else seems to miss. Listen to this sermon, and you will be blessed and amazed.
Next week, I will be discussing Ligon Duncan’s (the best at the conference) and Thabiti Anyabwile’s sermons.
Just a quick note: I am not a stenographer or a short-hand writer. All the quotes above may not be word for word, as I had to write long-hand and listen at the same time, but they are accurate to what was said.