Common Slaves

Common Men; Uncommon Master



2021 Common Slaves Fall Conference: The Wonderful Doctrines of Grace

This Fall’s conference is an examination of the doctrines of grace from both a theological and pastoral perspective. We’ve asked our presenters to wrestle through some of the tensions and practical implications of these doctrines which are definitional in Reformed soteriology. As is our custom, we’ve sought out men with decades of faithful pastoral ministry to open the Word for us.

The fall conference is designed with pastors and elders in mind, but all are welcome. Registration is free but required for planning purposes, and you can do so below. We’ll receive any voluntary gifts at the conference if you wish to help defray some of the costs. We are so grateful to the saints of Lifespring for once again graciously hosting and underwriting this conference. Conference details are below the registration.

Conference details:

Date: Friday, October 29, 2021
Place: Lifespring Church, Crosby


8:30-9:00 Welcome & Sing

9:00-9:40 Session 1 – Dale McIntyre (Cornerstone Community Church, Grand Marais): Totally Depraved: Sweet Old Ladies Can Still Go to Hell

9:40-10:00 Break

10:00-10:40 Session 2 – Bob Dalberg (Berean Baptist Church, Ely): Responsibility of Man and the Unconditional Election of God

10:40-11:00 Break

11:00-11:40 Session 3 – Ivan Fiske (Quamba Baptist Church): The Infinite Christ and His Limited Atonement

11:40-1:00 Lunch Break (Celebrity guest speaker?)

1:00-1:20 Announcements / Sing

1:20-2:00 Session 4 – Kevin Sorenson (Albion E-Free Church): Ungatherable Chicks and Irresistible Grace: How the Spirit Overpowers the Will

2:00-2:20 Break

2:20-3:00 Session 5 – Dan Erickson (Chisholm Baptist Church): The Active Role of the Believer in Persevering to the End

3:20-4:00 Kevin Carr (retired from First Presbyterian Church of Hinckley [PCA]): Praxis of Grace: How the Doctrines of Grace Shape Pastoral Care 

4-4:30 Closing

Thanks to all who came and participated in our evening of Worship this past Sunday afternoon at Quamba Baptist Church. Here is the recording of Dr. Caneday’s sermon on Forgiveness and Repentance, taken from Matthew 18:21-35. Enjoy! Use the player below or download the audio file here

Matthew 18:21-35, Dr. Ardel Caneday

Upcoming Events

Just wanted to give you a heads up and invite for two events coming up in the near future (if God wills!):

First, it’s been a while since we’ve had what we call our “Combined Worship Service,” where we invite members of all the churches who participate in the Common Slaves to come together for an evening of simple worship: Singing, Scripture, Preaching, and Fellowship around a meal. We’ve got one coming (finally!), so here’s the details:

Date: Sunday, August 29, 2021
Time: 4:30PM
Place: Quamba Baptist Church
Speaker: Dr. Ardel Caneday
For a text, we’ve assigned Dr. Caneday The Parable of the Unforgiving Servant from Matthew 18:21-35

Secondly, our fall conference is coming up in October. This one is generally geared toward pastors and elders, though any who wish to attend are certainly welcome. We’re getting back to the basics of Reformed theology, and have assigned five of our own members each a different petal of the TULIP, concluded by a pastoral exhortation from the recently retired Dr. Kevin Carr. More details to follow, and even the scant ones I’m offering now are subject to change:

Friday, October 29, 2021
Common Slaves Fall Conference: The Wonderful Doctrines of Grace

Time: 8:30AM-4:30PM
Place: Lifespring Church, Crosby
Theme: The Doctrines of Grace

Speakers / Assignments:
Dale McIntire (Cornerstone Community Church, Grand Marais): “Totally Depraved: Sweet Old Ladies Can Still Go to Hell” 

Bob Dalberg (Berean Baptist Church, Ely): Responsibility of Man and the Unconditional Election of God

Ivan Fiske (Quamba Baptist Church): The Infinite Christ and His Limited Atonement

Kevin Sorensen (Albion E-Free Church): Ungatherable Chicks and Irresistible Grace: How the Spirit Overpowers the Will

Dan Erickson (Chisholm Baptist Church): The Active Role of the Believer in Persevering to the End

Kevin Carr (formerly of First Presbyterian Church of Hinckley [PCA]): Praxis of Grace: How the Doctrines of Grace Shape Pastoral Care 

Long-term Neighbor Loving

And one of the scribes came up and heard them disputing with one another, and seeing that he answered them well, asked him, “Which commandment is the most important of all?” Jesus answered, “The most important is,Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.”

Mark 12:28-31, ESV

Whenever a biblical phrase goes viral across the Christian landscape, I get a little suspicious. And when that phrase is employed in a moment of confusion to help Christians reach the exact same conclusion as those who hate Christ, I add some natural crotchetiness and unnatural cantankerosity to my suspicion and this, quite naturally makes me a very pleasant person.

Continue reading “Long-term Neighbor Loving”

Fall Conference Recordings Now Available

The audio for the Common Slaves Fall Conference “Let us Run With Endurance” is now available under the Conference Audio tab. I’m hoping the videos will be up shortly, and will let you know. Thanks again to Dr. Ardel B. Caneday for this significant presentation.

Also, be sure to subscribe to our podcast, “A Place for Truth,” where you’ll find cultural conversations with Drs. P. Andrew Sandlin and Ardel B. Caneday, and hopefully we’ll get the conference sessions up on there too. Look for it wherever you find your podcasts. If you’re an Apple snob like me, you can find it here.

Caneday/Sandlin: Responding to the New Social Justice Religion

With many thanks to Dr Ardel B. Caneday and P. Andrew Sandlin for joining us, along with Pastors Bob Dalberg and David Smith to discuss one of the more pressing issues in the church today, and to David Gonzales for putting the conversation in an attractive format.

Here’s the link to the recording.

This evening several of us were blessed to be able to visit with Drs. Ardel Caneday and P. Andrew Sandlin as they worked through biblical teaching concerning matters of the relationship between church and state.

Nowadays it’s like life’s autopilot is broken, and so much of what we used to do automatically we now have to figure out all over again. I’m thankful for these two brothers God has gifted with good minds and courageous hearts to help us think through this, um, what shall we call it, brave new world?

Watch the conversation here

You’ll need this password to access it: 1j$@^=S#

Luther & Whether One May Flee From A Deadly Plague

Keeping in mind that 1527 is not 2020, Wittenberg Germany under Charles V (if memory serves – and it may not) is not Central Minnesota under Trump and Walz, and the Black Death is not COVID-19, basic human nature remains identical across the ages, medical mysteries still persist, the need for careful thinking and wisdom remains as persistent as ever, and the voices of the past whose value is proven by the fact they continually echo down the corridors of history nearly five centuries later are still worth hearing.

To that end, I encourage you to read some Luther as he wrestled through the advice he would offer to those seeking for a wise course of action during a time of plague. Basically the question was “stay, or flee?” I give you a sample here, at no expense to me, and hopefully great benefit to you:

We must pray against every form of evil and guard against it to the best of our ability in order not to act contrary to God… If it be God’s will that evil come upon us and destroy us, none of our precautions will help us. Everybody must take this to heart: first of all, if he feels bound to remain where death rages in order to serve his neighbor, let him commend himself to God and say, “Lord, I am in thy hands; thou hast kept me here; thy will be done. I am thy lowly creature. Thou canst kill me or preserve me in this pestilence in the same way as if I were in fire, water, drought, or any other danger.” If a man is free, however, and can escape, let him commend himself and say, “Lord God,
I am weak and fearful. Therefore I am running away from evil and am doing what I can to protect myself against it. I am nevertheless in thy hands in this danger as in any other which might overtake me. Thy will be done. My flight alone will not succeed of itself because calamity and harm are everywhere. 

Martin Luther

Read the entire piece here (and I say this more by way of command than information).

The lazy may check out Dr. Steve Nichols’ treatment of it in five minutes, with a little Cranberries intro music thrown in here. Your indulgence will be smaller, but something is better than nothing.

I’ve (finally) updated the “What I’m listening to” page with various and sundry shiny things that have caught my eye, to tragically confuse and conflate the senses.

Thanks to those who have shown interest in and picked up Alice in the Palace.

The pastors and churches associated with the Common Slaves get together every couple months to worship and fellowship together, and we are doing so again this Sunday evening, June 30, 4:30PM at Quamba Baptist Church. Pastor Ken Carlton from Providence Community Church in Crosslake, MN will be opening the word for us. Join us if you’re able!

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