The Church and the Gates of Hades

“… and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.” (Matthew 16:18, CSB) This is Jesus’ very first mention of “the church” as he’s responding to Peter’s confession of Jesus as Messiah. That truth would be the bedrock of the church – the church would build […]

Who is My Neighbor?

“He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” (Micah 6:8, ESV) Look around and you will see injustice everywhere. Some of it is perceived…but most is very real. After all, ours […]

Justice and Grace

“When you spread out your hands in prayer, I will refuse to look at you; even if you offer countless prayers, I will not listen. Your hands are covered with blood. “Wash yourselves. Cleanse yourselves. Remove your evil deeds from my sight. Stop doing evil. Learn to do what is good. Pursue justice. Correct the […]

Everything that can be Shaken

“But there’s far more to life for us. We’re citizens of high heaven! We’re waiting the arrival of the Savior, the Master, Jesus Christ,” (Philippians 3:20, The Message) That verse came to mind Wednesday as I watched the unbelievable images from our Nation’s Capital. Regardless of your political views, I’m sure you’d agree that our […]

God Moves Deliberately

“And my God will supply all your needs according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:19) God’s in the business of meeting needs: When Adam and Eve discovered they were unclothed…God made them coverings from animal skins When the world needed saving from a flood, God gave us Noah When Abraham needed […]

God Moves Personally

“The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel – which means God with us.” (Matt. 2:23) Monday was Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day. December 7, 1941 is a day that will live in infamy – the vicious attack led our nation to war. We had […]

The God of Miracles

“For nothing is impossible with God (Luke 1:37).” We serve a miraculous God. From time to time he will suspend his own laws of nature to help his children. Why, you ask? C.S. Lewis says it best: “Miracles are a retelling in small letters of the very same story which is written across the whole […]

A Change in Perspective

“If I go away and prepare a place for you, I will come again and take you to myself, so that where I am you may be also.” (John 14:3) Jesus said that to his disciples on the night of the “Last Supper.” He had just explained to them that he would be betrayed, denied, […]

Blessed are the Meek?

In his same Sermon on the Mount when Jesus said blessed are the peacemakers, he also said this: “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.” (Matthew 5:5, NIV84) Later, Jesus would describe himself with the same term: “Take up my yoke and learn from me, because I am lowly and humble in […]

Peacemaking and Rebuke?

I don’t know about you, but several of Jesus’ commands to his disciples make me uncomfortable. Here’s one: “Take heed to yourselves. If your brother sins against you, rebuke him; and if he repents, forgive him. And if he sins against you seven times in a day, and seven times in a day returns to […]

The Anatomy of Conflict

“What causes fights and quarrels among you? Don’t they come from your desires that battle within you?” (James 4:1) Conflict is the collision of differing desires – when someone wants his own way and someone else wants something different…and tension builds. Dr. David Cimbora of Biola University says there are several major differences in each […]

Loving the Unlovely

“But I say to you who listen: Love your enemies, do what is good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” (Luke 6:27–28) In our pursuit of “waging peace” – being peacemakers in a world of conflict – we eventually have to come to grips with […]