Psalm 16:11, The Position of Pleasure

Consider the incredible dignity of mankind, created in God’s image, a reflection of his awesome character, worth, and glory, created to walk upright, think intelligently, care for creation, serve one another, and demonstrate loving kindness and compassion. Yet consider the depravity to which we have fallen. God created us for his good pleasure intending us to take pleasure in his goodness, but we have made pleasure our god and lost all goodness. he⋅don⋅ism pronunciation: [heed-n-iz-uhm]... read more.

Psalm 99:8, Forgiven Yet Not Unpunished

God is a perfect heavenly father and so he always forgives...and punishes as well. Consider God's fatherhood of Israel. "O LORD our God, you answered them; you were to Israel a forgiving God, though you punished their misdeeds" (Psalm 99:8 NIV). God always forgave Israel, in fact he died for all of them as well as us. However, he also punished them and sometimes quite severely. Korah rebelled against Moses and so God swallowed Korah... read more.

Revelation 12:11, Not so Dear Life

We American Christians have grown soft in the pursuit of happiness. For example, I recently enjoyed chatting with a friend while at an amusement park about how to safely watch worldly movies using technologies to remove objectionable content. Later I reflected that as we strolled at the park discussing movies , Christians round the world enlist as soldiers of Christ to evangelize, disciple, and testify, even unto death. Revelation 12:11 (WEB) says, “They overcame him... read more.

Revelation 20:11-15, A.M.A.Z.I.N.G. Grace

The good news of Jesus Christ is wonderful news. This news has given new life to every believer, from the uneducated fool who knows nothing but simple faith in Christ, to the proud intellectual who knows all but still needs a savior. And the good news of Christ is superbly worded in the New Testament so that we cannot reduce salvation to mere head knowledge, but instead that our hearts would bow in submission and... read more.

Revelation 20:11-15, Optimism Out of Control, Part 5: Hades Gives Up!

Good Reason for Fear 19) "Now there was a certain rich man, and he was clothed in purple and fine linen, living in luxury every day. 20) A certain beggar, named Lazarus, was taken to his gate, full of sores, 21) and desiring to be fed with the crumbs that fell from the rich man's table. Yes, even the dogs came and licked his sores. 22) The beggar died, and he was carried away by... read more.

Revelation 20:11-15, Optimism Out of Control, Part 6: If, If, If, If, If, If, If,,,

1) Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. 2) When he had fasted forty days and forty nights, he was hungry afterward. 3) The tempter came and said to him, " If you are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread." 4) But he answered, "It is written, 'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out... read more.

Revelation 20:13-15, Out of Control Optimism Part 8, Your Name in The Book of Life!

13) The sea gave up the dead who were in it. Death and Hades [HELL] gave up the dead who were in them. They were judged, each one according to his works. 14) Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. 15) If anyone was not found written in the book of life, he was cast into the lake of fire. Revelation 20:13-15 (WEB)... read more.

Revelation 22:12-21, Give You Revelation? Repent of Sexual Immorality While You Have Time

Third Day is one of my favorite Christian bands. Yet even so while listening to their 'Revelation' song a discerning hear might wonder what they seek when they sing ' Give me a revelation. Show me what to do. ' Do they mean give me words from the Bible, God's inspired revelation? Do they mean give me inspiration from God beyond the Bible? Do they mean something less precise and more poetic? The last nine... read more.

Revelation 22:17, The Spirit and the Bride say "Come!"

Recently I had the privilege of preaching to an assembly of believers about the beautiful body of Christ from the book of Ephesians. We learned that believers in Christ are His body, the church; that the central focus of Christ's reign is his work for the church; that the Christian is a new man, neither Jew nor Gentile; that the church is the great mystery of God's redemptive plan revealed to Paul; that the church... read more.

Romans 10:6-11, One Nation Under God Vs Jesus is Lord

I have on my shelf a book titled, The Pen is Mightier than the Sword . This is true. Sadly this is true because quite often fickle human nature can be lead easily from one belief to another by error without placing building blocks on the permanent foundation of truth. Consider that many Russians rallied under the Communist Manifesto to become the USSR. Believe it or not there are actually some good principles in this... read more.

Romans 3:20-24 & 5:20, The Federal 'Old Covenant Style' Marriage Amendment

Christian, I am confused. What is the purpose of the proposed United States federal marriage amendment? Is the purpose to restrain the sinful tendencies of mankind? If so the Scriptures both teach and demonstrate that the law never ever was able to accomplish that purpose. David knew the law against adultery and murder, yet sinned anyway. Romans 5:20 (WEB) also explains that the law actually promoted more sin! "The law came in that the trespass... read more.

Romans 3:23, You're Not a Good Man Charlie Brown

I just finished watching an awesome play production of Charlie Brown's Snoopy at a local playhouse. The play producers and actors are good friends, and I was thoroughly entertained. I almost fell off my seat laughing to watch my normally mild-mannered friends roll out a Broadway class performance. Well done! The grand finale song brought out the whole cast as melodramatic Charlie Brown mused about the possibility of anyone ever believing in him. His friends... read more.

Romans 5:12-21, Out of Control Optimism Part 7, Many = Many = All = All

Continuing our 'Out of Control Optimism' series I am reminded of a construct in Romans Chapter 5 that offers great hope for the believer in Jesus Christ, that is hope for himself and his fellow man. Paul explains a parallel comparison and contrast between the first man from God, Adam, and the second man from God, Jesus Christ. 12) Therefore as sin entered into the world through one man, and death through sin; so death... read more.

Romans 7:18, Ephesians 6:15, and Philippians 2:15, Star Peace

Recently I enjoyed viewing the Star Wars movie series. I know I married a woman and have three daughters, but even so I just can’t get excited about movies like Pride and Prejudice . I need a good action adventure! I just love a good sci-fi thriller and Star Wars is a classic. Consider the dramatic conclusion with the Evil Emperor pitting Luke Skywalker against his father Darth Vader with evil designs that the victor... read more.

Romans 7:9-25, Intrapersonal Conflict Resolution

‘I wouldn’t be paranoid if so many people weren’t out to get me,’ I joked to myself as I threw another training flyer in the trash titled, ‘Dealing with Difficult People.’ There must be a cunning reason that marketers have targeted me with hundreds of flyers teaching the means to deal with difficult people. Big bucks are to be made selling strategies for dealing with the whiny, selfish, ungrateful, and difficult people in our lives.... read more.

Romans 8:28-39, The Force Is Not With Us!

Have you ever been tempted to Christianize the world’s stuff? For example the Star Wars story is an incredible good versus evil saga by George Lucas. Yet have you noticed that the heart of his message is that salvation from evil can be attained through democratic “freedom?” Is that true? This is the unfortunate sentiment of too many who are mesmerized by the temporal successes of the United States democracy. What about the power of... read more.

Romans 9:22-28, Not my people, My people

In December of last year I mentioned that Romans 8, the great Bible chapter of encouragement, also contains words of warning. If we live according to the sinful nature we will die. This month I would like to point out that Romans 9, the great Bible chapter of fear, also contains words of incredible encouragement. We read here that God transforms those who are not his people into his people. This is hope beyond hope... read more.

Samuel(1) 10:5-6 plus, Much More Than Music

King Saul’s debut into public service for God’s people began with a spiritual revival through a band of traveling musician prophets. 5) "After that you will come to the hill of God, where the garrison of the Philistines is; and it will happen, when you have come there to the city, that you will meet a band of prophets coming down from the high place with a lute, a tambourine, a pipe, and a harp... read more.

Samuel(2) 11:1-4, Counting Davids Costs

Men, we need more frank conversation about sexual temptation. Many knew David’s story before we fell into sin ourselves, so knowledge of this story alone is not enough to keep us from sin. Yet the story must be retold to teach us a healthy mistrust of ourselves and call upon God for grace, even now. Praise God for the past victories we have had in spite of defeats, but we should also be reminded that... read more.

Samuel(2) 11:8-11, Viagra or Uriah?

Men, we need more frank conversation about sexual temptation. The effects of lust and the idolatry of sex destroys lives and opportunity to serve the Lord. Too many of us know that addiction to pornography and masturbation combined with worldly notions about love are a recipe for disaster. Great engines of sin have been built in our generation to pump the filth of pornography and lust at high pressure through the cracks in the defenses... read more.