In a world of sin and the popular anti-Christ worldview, online bullying, in-your-face verbal abuse, and really all persecution should be expected: “Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted, while evil people and impostors will go on from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived….” Take courage: “…but as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ … Continue reading sticks and stones?
Being a slave not only meant belonging to someone else; it also meant being always available to obey that person in every way. The slave’s sole duty was to carry out the master’s wishes, and the faithful slave was eager to do so without hesitation or complaint. After all, “slaves know no law but their master’s word; they have no rights of their own; they are absolute possessions of their master; and they are bound to give their master unquestioning obedience.” Building on this imagery, the New Testament repeatedly calls believers to faithfully obey the Master. As one author explains: … Continue reading slave of Christ. I’m not my own.
But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, He saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to His own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by His grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. Titus 3:4-7 ~~~ Long ago, at many times and in many ways, God spoke to our fathers by the prophets, but in these last days he has spoken to … Continue reading preach the gospel to yourself
“Indeed, the cost of nondiscipleship is great. The cost of believers not taking Jesus seriously is vast for those who don’t know Christ and devastating for those who are starving and suffering around the world. But the cost of nondiscipleship is not paid solely by them. It is paid by us as well.” A Call to Treasure Did you catch what Jesus said when he told the rich man to abandon his possessions and give to the poor? Listen again, particularly to the second half of Jesus’ invitation: “Go, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you … Continue reading You are my Treasure
A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother. Proverbs 18:24 Life is never going to be easy. Relationships will never be perfect. People who claim to be close friends often prove the opposite. Reaching out and opening up definitely presents the opportunity to be burned. (Incidentally, the phrase, “may come to ruin,” can mean, “be crushed”.) But is there reward without risk? I find comfort in one relationship: “By definition, the greatest friend that ever lived is Jesus Christ. For Jesus Christ is more intimate with us than … Continue reading who are my true friends?
…but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you; yet do it with gentleness and respect…. 1 Peter 3:15 I received the following story in an email from a work friend: Every Sunday afternoon, after the morning service at the church, the Pastor and his eleven year old son would go out into their town and hand out Gospel Tracts. This particular Sunday afternoon, as it came time for the Pastor and his son to go to … Continue reading Love for the Lost