Archive for February, 2013

CREATION’S PROGRESS

“The heavens are telling of the glory of God; and their expanse is declaring the work of His hands” (Psalms19:6). “Behold, I am making all things new” (Revelation 21:5).

I’m greatly intrigued by the things I do not understand. I am awed by the inexhaustible glories of God’s creative wonders. To speak of God’s creation as a one-time, one-dimensional, static event is both unbiblical and unnecessary. The redemption of all creation; the making of all things new points to a transforming and ever-evolving dynamic within His creative order. Embrace the majestic and glorious expanse of His creation. Be awestruck. Be overwhelmed by all that you do not know and moved by new discoveries. Do not reduce our God to one that is limited to what you can understand and explain.

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A PATIENT DEFENSE

“…I consider myself fortunate, King Agrippa, that I am about to make my defense before you today; especially because you are an expert in all customs and questions among the Jews; therefore I beg you to listen to me patiently” (Acts 26:2-3).

Apologetics is a theological discipline that seeks to defend the tenets of the Christian faith. However, making an argument for one’s faith should never be argumentative. We cannot rightly commend Christ when His Spirit of grace is absent from our voice and demeanor. It is not our passion or volume that carries the day but his power and presence that is most compelling.

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CROSS TALK

“For the word of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God” (1 Corinthians 1:18).

While it stands at the center of the Christian faith, the cross is at the same time both unsettling and reassuring. With unexpected irony this symbol of suffering, shame, and death endures as a constant reminder of God’s presence even in the darkest of days. Any view of the Christian faith not rooted in the theology of the cross is misguided.

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PERFECTLY SAID

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1).

When God spoke the Word of Jesus into the world it was the embodiment of everything he wanted to say. The revelation of God; the revealing of himself was culminated in the person of Jesus Christ. Any question you could ever have about God is answered in the life of our Lord. John writes of Jesus in 1:18, “He has explained Him.”

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FAMILY FIRST

“Who is my My mother and who are My brothers? For whoever does the will of My Father who is in heaven, he is My brother and sister and mother” (Matthew 12:48, 50).

While most would think first of a building at any mention of a church, they would be mistaken. That our Lord would consider us his brothers and sisters points to the greater connection we share–we are family–this the leading metaphor for God’s people found throughout scripture. Through the shared seasons and experiences of life; enduring ups, downs, highs, lows, celebrations, and defeats the crucible of family is forged.

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FORMED AND TRANSFORMING

“Then The Lord God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being” (Genesis 2:7).

What God formed, he is still forming. What God breathed into Adam was the Spirit of life. It is this same Spirit of the living Christ that is forming and fashioning us to this day. Never diminish your worth. Though He fashioned us from the dust of the earth, we are made in His image, and have dominion over the earth. Shake the dust off and get going.

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EMPOWERED TO SERVE

“He gives strength to the weary, and to him who lacks might He increases power” (Isaiah 40:29).

Ever felt like you have been run over by life? The most tiresome existence is one caught in the vortex of meaningless pursuits; pulling one down further and further into triviality. Purpose is realized when faith becomes the vocation of our life. The strength God gives is for the life of service to which we are called; to be ministers of His gospel. From this perspective even the mundane becomes meaningful.

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HUNGER FOR MORE

“I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst” (John 6:35).

Physical hunger is relevant for the present moment. Spiritual hunger is beyond the ordinary range of human experience or understanding; it transcends the natural realm. Too often we hear the critics of the church make the claim that the message of the church isn’t relevant. Sadly, even some inside the church have been overly influenced by the cultural demand of relevance. Relevance is for the present moment; one’s current and ever-changing circumstances. The Good News of the gospel is that it transcends today and points us to an eternal hope. Might we be a people that hunger for more.

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EXPERIENCING FAITH

“O taste and see that the Lord is good” (Psalm 34:8).

As those created in his image, God has given us five senses—sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell—to not only experience the immediacy of any given moment but, also, to respond appropriately to what our senses have detected. However, with growing alarm it seems that from social media, to smart phones, to iTunes much of what we call life has become canned, digitized, less personal; thus, robbing us of the personalized and responsive existence our senses desire to offer. While advancing technology allows us to plug-in to the world in a variety of helpful ways, we must not allow “high tech” to become a substitute for the engagement of our senses; that we might offer to the world around us the intimacy that a “high touch” Savior longs to offer.

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BLESSED MEMORIES

“The memory of the righteous is blessed, but the name of the wicked will not” (Proverbs 10:7).

It was from those who preceded us that the wonderment of what it is to be the people of God was stirred within our soul. On our best days it is these for whom we give thanks to God for their placement in our lives. And it is in our memories of them that on our worst days we find the encouragement to press on. Someday each of us will be but a memory. Let us live each day inspired that we, too, might be a blessed memory to those who will come after us.

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