Relativism: The Religion of Contemporary Culture

(Scroll down to leave a comment on relativism.) “Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am tempted by God”; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed. Then, when desire has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and sin, when it is full-grown, brings forth death. Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation […]

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Who Do You Say That I Am?

Leadership books are a dime a dozen today. Step into any local bookstore or shop online. You’ll see right away that books about leadership abound. Everyone has an angle. Some authors offer a key to effective leadership. Many writers have come up with a catchy title. But, basically, leaders fall into one of two categories: those who lead according to public consensus and those who lead based on personal convictions. Those who lead according to public opinion wait until the polling data is in so they can see their constituents’ thoughts on a certain issue. Once they have this information, […]

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O Lord, How Long…?

“O Lord, How Long Shall I Cry, and You Will Not Hear?” (Habakkuk 1:2). This question, asked by Habakkuk, was born out of a “burden” that consumed him. He faced a moral dilemma: how could a holy God — who had called Israel the “apple of His eye” (Deuteronomy 32:10) — now allow the pagan Babylonians to besiege and ultimately destroy the city of Jerusalem and take away the Jews into captivity? If we are honest, most of us have felt like Habakkuk. We, too, have been burdened by the seeming inactivity of our God. We too have bombarded the […]

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Paul vs. James — The Main Event

“What Does It Profit, My Brethren, If Someone Says He Has Faith but Does Not Have Works? Can Faith Save Him?” (James 2:14). Throughout Christian history, people have tried to pit Paul, with his emphasis on grace, against James, with his emphasis on works. The apparent conflict has been presented like the main event of a heavyweight prizefight: “In this corner, wearing the grace trunks, is the apostle Paul, born in Tarsus, educated by the renowned Gamaliel, and the undisputed brilliant mind of this new movement called Christianity! He says, ‘By grace you have been saved through faith, and that […]

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Finding Jesus in Genesis

“Then He (God) said, ‘Take now your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you…And he (the Angel) said, ‘Do not lay your hand on the lad, or do anything to him; for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your son, your only son, from Me.’ Then Abraham lifted his eyes and looked, and there behind him was a ram caught in a thicket by its horns. So […]

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A Prayer of Affection

Matthew 6:9 How many times have those two words escaped your lips over the years of your own Christian experience? Hundreds? Thousands? They have become so familiar that they are often rushed through and skipped over in our quest to get to the more direct requests of this model prayer —“Give us…forgive us…deliver us.” But take a step back for just a moment and think on those words — “Our Father.” No matter who we might be, whether we have just begun the faith journey or have been walking this path for decades, we can all begin our prayer time […]

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Don’t Give In: Be Resistant

(Scroll down to leave a comment on how you are resistant to the customs of this world.) Daniel 1:1–8 Daniel was keenly aware of the temptation to yield to the pressures of the culture around him. After all, he was a long way from home, and who would really know if he, for instance, changed his diet? Yet he chose to resist the pressures and not to give in to them. He drew the line. Note, however, that he went along with some things, nonessentials like learning the language or reading Babylon’s history. But Daniel resisted at each and every […]

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Has God Indeed Said?

Genesis 3:1 We had a really good start. Life began in a perfect paradise. The climate was never too warm and never too cold. We had no aches or pains, heartache or worries. We lived in perfect peace and harmony in the midst of a perfect garden. And we had dominion over everything except the “tree of the knowledge of good and evil,” which God had forbidden us to eat (Genesis 2:17). We were doing wonderfully well . . . until the devil slithered into our world and asked the first recorded question in Scripture. It was cleverly designed to […]

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Counter-Cultural Christianity

Ephesians 2:8–10 These days, we find the Christian faith on a collision course with the world system. This has become increasingly apparent with the reactions to our evangelistic efforts or our efforts to protect the lives of the most vulnerable. These efforts, firmly rooted in Scripture, have met incredible opposition not only from the secularists of the world but others who consider themselves a part of the Christian community. We have come a long way since the Apostle Paul said, Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved (Romans 10:1). Cultural Christianity […]

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The Most Often Quoted Verse in the Bible

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” (John 3:16) If we ever memorize a verse of Scripture, it will most likely be John 3:16. It is the verse most often heard in the simplicity and beauty of a little child’s voice, proudly reciting it from memory. It is the one verse showing up on large placards at football games and other major sporting events. Those signs are located where television cameras cannot avoid its message. This is the one verse that many […]

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