Shortchanging God

Exodus 20_3 (1)

As of late within the church, there are some things that have been grabbing my attention, which I will speak on here today. Before I get into those things, however, I want to start by expounding on a passage, with similarity to today’s topic, in Malachi chapter 1. (Note: reading verses 6-14 before beginning may be helpful.) There, God brings correction to Israel about their polluted offerings.  Continue reading

What Goes In Will Come Up

Psalm 119_11 (1)

On last Sunday, a day before my surgery on Monday, June 18th, I found myself studying the words of Psalm 91 (a favorite of mine). During that study time, the words of verses 14-16 jumped out at me (I’ve always loved them), and I stayed there. The next morning, before heading out for the surgery, I set my sights there again, as I readied myself for the road ahead of me.  Continue reading

The Hard Truth

Isaiah 43_7

As I sat on my bed one day, a couple of weeks ago, pondering some things, a passage of Scripture—that blew my mind upon my initial reading of it some years ago—came to mind (as it does sometimes). In that passage, a man of God’s longing for something outside of the will of God for his life is revealed, and we also find God’s response to it there. Who is the man in question? His name is Baruch (buh-rook), and he’s a scribe to Jeremiah, the prophet. Follow me to Jeremiah chapter 45, to hear Baruch’s complaint and God’s response.  Continue reading

Raised in the Church vs. Being of the Church

Luke 9_23

For many who identify with Christianity, or as Christian, the thought that being raised in the church is enough is their basis for doing so. To them, that is all it takes to be declared heaven bound, a child of God, and safe from the wrath of God. But, is that so? 

I, once (naively) of the “Christians” who shared this belief, would come to learn that the answer to that question is a resounding, No. And today, we’ll talk about why.  Continue reading

For These Trials I’ve Prayed

1 Peter 1-6

“The very thing that seems disastrous to you, may be the answer to a prayer prayed by you.”

The above quote stems from something God revealed to me some years ago on my college graduation day (concerning some things that had happened sometime prior to it), and it’s something He continues to remind me of even now. Continue reading

From Emptiness to Wholeness in Christ

Jeremiah 31_3 (1)

While reading through a recent devotional, I was struck by the author’s take on the life of the Samaritan woman, a passage I’ve read several times during this journey, and it brought some truths from my own life to mind. If you don’t know who the Samaritan woman is, we meet her (and it’s the only time we’ll see her) in the book of John, chapter 4. It’s there that Jesus brings to light the truth of the woman’s life. Continue reading

In 2018 and Beyond: Beware of the Deceivers’ Cleverness

Phil 3

While finishing up Romans 16 last month, I was struck by Paul’s ending. The next day, when I went to Jude, I was awestruck even more at how the two chapters correlated (specifically the ending of Romans 16 with Jude). Now, Paul has talked about false teachers a bunch in the New Testament, but, there was something in particular that time, and also about Jude, and I knew I had to speak on this topic again (previous post can be found here). Continue reading

Truth or Pharisaism?

Romans 14-4

*Post was originally published on March 17, 2017. Relevant still for such a time as this one.*

What is pharisaism? Pharisaism is adhering to the principles and practices of the Pharisees—men who were fierce (self-righteous) hypocrites, as we see in the Bible.

The Pharisees’ belief was that everyone should live by their rules, their man-made traditions (even when they themselves didn’t). When people didn’t, they unmercifully criticized them, and Jesus wasn’t excluded. Let’s look at one example. Continue reading