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Showing posts from April, 2017

Zeal

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In his book Knowing God, J. I. Packer quotes J. C. Ryle on zeal:
"Zeal in religion is a burning desire to please God, to do His will, and to advance His glory in the world in every possible way. It is a desire which no man feels by nature--which the Spirit puts in the heart of every believer when he is converted--but which some believers feel so much more strongly than others that they alone deserve to be called 'zealous' men...
“A zealous man in religion is pre-eminently a man of one thing. It is not enough to say that he is earnest, hearty, uncompromising, thorough-going, whole-hearted, fervent in spirit. He only sees one thing, he cares for one thing, he lives for one thing, he is swallowed up in one thing; and that one thing is to please God. Whether he lives, or whether he dies--whether he has health, or whether he has sickness--whether he is rich, or whether he is poor--whether he pleases man, or gives offence--whether he is thought wise, or whether he is thought fool…

Hard Sayings

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I had the opportunity to do some lay-preaching about two weeks ago (April 9, 2017) at my local church, Faith Bible Church. I preached from John 6, where Jesus begins to speak some "hard sayings" to the people which then causes many of his disciples to leave and "no longer walk with him."


John 6 is an incredibly relevant passage to where we are at today in America 2017. We have come to a place culturally where much of what Jesus says is hard for us, and we can no longer reconcile his words with the world at large. As a result, many are leaving the church, including large numbers of millennials.


But Christianity is not just hard for us to swallow on a societal level. There will be times and seasons where the words of Jesus will seem very hard for us as individuals. When those times come we each will have to answer Jesus's tempting question: "Will you go too?"


3 Uses of the Law from Calvin

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As Christians we affirm that we are saved by grace through faith. That our salvation is not of ourselves, but rather it is a gift of God, not of works so that none of us can boast. We rejoice in this truth, for we know that if we played a role in winning our own salvation we would remain forever lost.
But if we are saved by grace, why is so much Scripture devoted to laws and rules? What are we to do with the long Old Testament books that repetitively give restrictions of "Thou Shalt Not"? (I am not speaking here of the Jewish ceremonial and societal laws which we understand to be no longer part of the new covenant, but to the moral laws anchored in the Ten Commandments)
Many Christians make the mistake of throwing out the law entirely. This is what is called "antinomianism" or "against the law". They reason that if the law contributes nothing to our salvation, and legalism is such a frequent temptation--why don't we do away with it and simply live under…

Every Moment a Gift

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About a week and a half ago I got to see my sister act in her final High School play which was entitled: "Our Town". Though I had never heard of it before I saw it, I hear Thornton Wilder's play is fairly well known.
Now I am a man very much in control of my emotions, and as such I am not one to sob in movies. I am not one disposed to emotional ecstasy over a theatrical performance. I can appreciate a good, well conducted play. I can enjoy quality acting, but I rarely go much further than that.
But this particular play was different. And when it ended I sat unable to look to the right or to the left as my eyes were welling up with tears. I was close, way too close to losing it.
There were some excellent performances in the play (and my sister did a great job), but it was more the message of "Our Town" that resonated with me more deeply than anything else. "Our Town" is in short a play about life. It is about how precious life is. How brief life is. It …