Training for Godliness (2): Pray Specifically
Growth in godliness is a worthwhile endeavour, and it will take time, perseverance, and prayer.
It is easy to confess that you are a sinner in a general sense. After all, as we are all sinners, you are not actually confessing anything personal or unusual. I think growth in godliness requires more than this. If we want to get better at resisting temptation or dealing with the sins we commonly... Continue Reading
Gold in the Laundry: Finding Value in the Mundane
The value lies in our faithfulness to what God has placed before us whether great or small.
“Why must I waste time washing dishes when I could be leading a Bible study?” We categorize our work as either secular or spiritual. However, our thoughts do not match God’s thoughts regarding the mundane. God made man to work—to do mundane tasks. God intended Adam and Eve to care for the garden, to bear... Continue Reading
Perhaps our “powers of discernment” have not been “trained by constant practice to distinguish good from evil.”
If we are not growing in our faith and knowledge of the word or, in other words, if we are not maturing in the faith, then there are consequences. There will be certain teaching from Scripture that is helpful and beneficial that we will not be able to understand and apply. Spiritual immaturity squelches our... Continue Reading
Come to Me, All Who Are Exhausted…
For disciples, following Jesus is both an exit and an entrance; an ending as well as a beginning. Disciples lay down, and they pick up.
Taking up the cross, like taking up the yoke, requires something from us – empty hands. We cannot pick up the cross, or take up the yoke, if we are still holding onto our opinions. Our supposed rights. Our own wisdom. These are all things still in our hands, and ironically, many of the things... Continue Reading
How Shall I Love My Neighbor? By Keeping the Law!
Love and law collaborate in that the commandments teach us how to love and the disposition of love supplies the motivation.
Paul focused on love in Romans 12:9-16, but since love is the core of the Christian life, he returns to it in 13:8-10. Reading 13:8-10 slowly, we notice that “love” appears five times, three times as a verb, twice as a noun. The passage has a sandwich structure. 13:8 and 13:10 both say love fulfills... Continue Reading
Torah for the Heart
We sing our way through the psalms from songs of lament to songs of praise.
There is an intensification of contrast between the wicked and the righteous in the first 40 psalms that begins to thin out and give way as the book progresses to the last 50 psalms, which focus on praise. There is a movement in the book from conflict to blessing, from lament to praise. When you... Continue Reading
Who Is Your Prophet?
Will you listen to the deceitful and vain prophets that are all around you? Or will you listen to the beloved Son of God, Jesus Christ?
Throughout the Bible the Lord warns us of listening to prophets that He did not send (4). But sinful man has itching ears and desires to hear false prophecies because they tell us what we so often want to hear rather than what is true (5). Thanks be to God, with the coming of Christ,... Continue Reading
In the Beginning…
Nothing can resist the command of God, who brought the world and everything in it into being.
An artist can take a square block of marble and form it into a beautiful statue or take a plain canvas and transform it by arranging paint pigments into a beautiful pattern, but that is not how God created the universe. God called the world into being, and His creation was absolute in the sense... Continue Reading
You Must be a Man to be a Father
The essence of men as we are created is a call to accept responsibility.
Our culture has too many limp wristed men whose Bibles have too little crease in its spine, who sleep past their alarms, get winded going up a flight of stairs, and find community in online gaming groups. My firstborn child turned 10 years old today. Today I have been a father for a decade.... Continue Reading
Cuties is Everything Wrong with Our World
We live in an uncomfortable world where the exploitation and sexualization of children is virtually everywhere these days.
What we find amusing reveals the state of the heart in things that people would otherwise stand opposed to if it were personally applied. What I mean by that is that no good Christian would want their daughter to watch something, or better yet, act in something, that glorifies the sexual exploitation women—yet they find... Continue Reading