About Matthew R. Olson


Posts by Matthew R. Olson:

The Dangers of Fundamentalism in Leadership

Though I would not define the purest part of fundamentalism as “keeping rules” or “being a rule follower,” I do understand how this authors perception of fundamentalism comes across as “keeping rules.” He has an interesting perspective on the current state of fundamentalism while addressing the issue of leadership.

Check out this article over at Resurgence, “The Danger of Fundamentalism in Leadership,” by Jeremy Pace.

*Image credit goes to Resurgence

Al Mohler’s Top Books for Preachers in 2012

Back in the March/April issue of Preaching magazine, Al Mohler provided a list of his top books for preachers for 2012. The list, as usual, is very good. I would commend you take a look at some of these books yourself this year. I have not personally read each of them, however, I have looked at some of them.

The Pleasures of Reading in an Age of Distraction Alan Jacobs (Oxford University Press: Oxford)

The Christian Faith: A Systematic Theology for Pilgrims on the Way Michael Horton (Zondervan: Grand Rapids)

Reading Scripture with the Reformers Timothy George (IVP Academic: Downers Grove)

The Next Decade: Where We’ve Been…and Where We’re Going George Friedman (Doubleday: New York)

Alone Together: Why We Expect More from Technology and Less from Each Other Sherry Turkle (Basic Books: New York)

The Triumph of Christianity: How the Jesus Movement Became the World’s Largest Religion Rodney Stark (Harper One: New York)

Christian Apologetics: Past and Present, Vol. 2 William Edgar & K. Scott Oliphant (Crossway: Wheaton)

A New Testament Biblical Theology: The Unfolding of the Old Testament in the New G.K. Beale (Baker Academic: Grand Rapids)

Historical Theology: An Introduction to Christian Doctrine Gregg R. Allison (Zondervan: Grand Rapids)

Lost in Translation: The Dark Side of Emerging Adulthood Christian Smith, Kari Christofferson, Hilary Davidson, Patricia Snell Herzog (Oxford University Press: Oxford)

I would love to connect with you! If you have any questions or would like to connect please use the contact page.

Set Apart for the Gospel of God

You might have noticed the subtitle for this site is “Set Apart for the Gospel of God.” I chose this as a title because in Romans 1:1 the Apostle Paul describes himself as “set apart for the gospel of God.” This statement resonates with every fibre of my being—theologically, personally, and vocationally. I believe the Gospel to be the “good news” of Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. However, in the fullest sense it is His incomparable person and work from eternity to eternity. There is nothing better to believe in and there is no better way to live than set apart to the gospel of God.

Announcement from Northland!

Dear Friends:

We are looking forward to a special livecast event which will be taking place on Friday, May 4th. Mark your calendars and plan to join us at 10:00 a.m. CST via live.ni.edu for several exciting announcements concerning Northland’s plans for continuing to effectively prepare servant-leaders for Great Commission living.

At Northland, we desire to continually assess our discipleship and student development methods in order to continuously equip students to utilize their unique gifts and talents to bring the truth of the Gospel around the world for the glory of God within the complex landscape of the twenty-first century. We are excited about the Lord’s leading concerning the future of our university and eagerly anticipate sharing this news with you.


I would love to connect with you! If you have any questions or would like to connect please use the contact page.

Founder’s Day at Northland

It was good on so many levels to have Daniel Patz as our Founder’s Day speaker! For me, it was a meaningful connect with a very like minded brother who represents a wave of solid guys that were pouring out of Northland in the late ’90’s and early part of the new millennium. I would simply say that, “they get it.” They understand what is important and they are passionate about what really counts. It is fine if we differ on small stuff. More

Around the Web (April 22—27)

Dave Crabb | When, Where, & Why to Draw Boundries

This is an excellent, but lengthy, post on drawing boundries in the church derived from Wayne Grudem.

Trevin Wax | Adult Education Panel at T4G

One of the sessions I tried to get in on at T4G was this session on adult education. The place was so packed that I could not even get close enough to hear. Trevin has a post on it and links to the audio and video from the session.

The Gospel Coalition | Carson and Zaspel: Rest in the Gospel or Strive Unto Holiness?

Resting in the gospel versus disciplining ourselves unto godliness. Read about this as Carson and Zaspel go back and forth.

R.C. Sproul Jr. | 3 Simple Ways to Encourage Your Pastor

Pastor’s need encouraged too. This is an excellent article with some great practical advice on encouraging your pastor.

Tim Challies | Seven Ways to Pray for Your Prayer Life

Check out this great article from Tim Challies on praying for your prayer life. His list of seven includes:

  1. Pray that your prayers would be the expressions of a humble heart.
  2. Pray that God would remind you that he doesn’t want or need your eloquent prayers.
  3. Pray that you would remember what the really important requests are.
  4. Pray that you would remember biblical examples of answered prayer.
  5. Pray that God would give you confidence in his sovereign power.
  6. Pray that God would help you to persevere in your praying.
  7. Pray that God would encourage you that he is your loving Father and will give you only what is good.
I would love to connect with you! If you have any questions or would like to connect please use the contact page.

Disciple! “Be One. Make Many.”

It is who we are. It is what we do. When Jesus looked into the eyes of ordinary men and said, “Come, follow me” (Matthew 4:19), He was inviting them to a radically new kind of life. The Greek word for “disciple” (mathetes) means, “One who follows the teaching.” At the same time, this is both a simple and yet very difficult concept. It is as simple as standing up and taking that first step to follow Christ, and it is as hard as following Him all the way through rejection and persecution to a Roman cross.

While most of us would agree that we should be “doxological” in our philosophy of ministry (doing everything for God’s glory), we recognize that our present task on this earth is to “go and make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19). These were Jesus’ final words. So whether we are leading an organization, church, or university, we should keep this in mind. We cannot succeed in this life unless this “big idea” is woven into every fiber of our being, and consequently, we will bear fruit. More

David Platt at T4G

This year was the first year I had the opportunity to go to Together for the Gospel. In previous years our Missions Conference on campus has conflicted with the conference, however, this year everything lined up well for me and many others from Northland to attend.

One of the take-aways, and the preaching highlight from the conference, was David Platt’s message from Revelation 5 called “Divine Sovereignty: The Fuel of Death-Defying Missions.” More