…to use the word now coined by our former president, George W. Bush, we do not want to ‘misunderestimate’ the gospel. – Al Mohler at T4G 2012
The theme for the T4G conference last week was Together for the Underestimated Gospel. All you had to do was attend the conference to get a fresh sense of the power of this gospel. Being washed in the word of God through passionate biblical preaching by renown pastors alongside 7,700 men and women of the faith was absolutely glorious. Allow me to reflect a little…
I said earlier that I wanted to attend this pastoral conference to experience a spiritual comradery on a scale you can hardly find anywhere else. Well, that comradery felt better than I thought it would. It felt like a slice of heaven. O, how I can’t wait for the whole pie! Yet I walked away with so much more. I came away with a greater love for God, a heightened awareness of the evil in this world, a stronger drive for evangelism and a willingness to suffer for His name. Praise God! I also walked away with a load of new books and new friendships with the saints in Louisville, KY. It was a special week.
You can watch or listen to any and all of the sermons here but if you have any desire to go to one of these conferences in the future, make it happen. (The Gospel Coalition and Desiring God also offer great conferences) Take it from me. Watching these sermons online does not compare with actually being there, in the moment. But if attending these conferences is not an option, you will still benefit from taking in these exceptional sermons. I don’t want to underestimate video clips.
It’s over a week later and I feel like I’m still glowing from that conference. Lord willing, I’ll be there for the next one in two years.
Here are at least three things that I will remember from the conference:
1. Suffering has a purpose.
C.J. Mahaney said, “Your congregation isn’t just listening to your sermons and studying your sermons. They are studying your life as well. And if you never suffered, they wouldn’t be able to observe the power of God in your life. They want to see if the gospel makes a discernible difference in your life.”
2. God wants you to seek his glory; beware of the idols in your heart.
Ligon Duncan said, “In disappointment and discouragement, we are tempted to think that there is a greater treasure that has been withheld from us or taken away from us than what God has or can give to us.”
3. Be willing to die for the glory of God in missions.
David Platt said, “Nothing can happen to you apart from God’s sovereign will.”
Platt’s sermon received the most acclaim from those I spoke with. If you never heard him preach before, this is the one to watch: