Loving God First

John 21.15 asks do you love me more than these?image

What are the ‘these’ God was contrasting Peter’s devotion with His love? Fish.

Its not that God was asking Peter if he loved fish more than Him but rather if he loved the fruit of working for himself more than the fruit of working for God.

Peter was hand chosen to be a fisher of men. The cost to accept this calling was to cease seeing himself as a fisher of fish. Succeeding in fishing meant a life of personal gain, good living, great reputation, worldly opportunities.

Succeeding at fishing for men would mean eternal life for some at personal sacrifice even to the point of death. Peter said he loved Jesus more so God told him to go to work building the church. (more…)


Managing Conflict

Ephesians 6.12 reports our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly

Most Christians believe the Bible is absolutely true but few are able to apply its truth absolutely.

While our struggles should be against unseen forces in heavenly places most of us struggle with known forces in our faces! Lately I have been in conflict with some fellow Christians and it hasn’t been pretty. How should Christians disagree? (more…)

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Building the Family

Proverbs 11:29 promises whoever brings ruin on their family will inherit only wind.images

Any male can marry and procreate but not all males become men, especially men who lead their family to greater generational impact for God than they themselves experienced.

There are at least three key ingredients to impacting our families for greater good than we experienced. (more…)


A Father’s Role

Exodus 34.6-7 describes the Lord, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in imageslove and faithfulness, maintaining love to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished..

The current culture rejects the importance of fathering but the Bible describes God as a Father, in fact that is the Name by which He prefers we call upon Him. The fact that some have experienced the tragedy of poor fathering doesn’t diminish the goodness of fathering.

What we need to do is focus on the goal of fathering so all of us can strive toward it and encourage one another in it. (more…)


God Loves Us

John 8.11 records God saying, ‘neither do I condemn you.’ ‘Go now and leave your life of sin.’images

The story of God recorded in the Bible is fairly simple and incredibly gracious. God creates but creation rebels. Rebellious creation needs restoration, a Savior, so God comes not in anger or judgment but with compassion.

God came as a man not to condemn the world but to save the world by demonstrating His love for the world through the taking upon Himself the consequence of their rebellion against Him. (more…)


What Does it Mean to Believe?

John 6.29 describes the work of God is this: to believe in the One He has sent.

One of the knocks on Christianity is it’s easy entry to heaven. Some believe going to heaven is as easy as believing in Jesus, after all, isn’t that what He just said? Its fair to say what He meant by belief and what we understand by belief are not the same.

If what we understand belief to mean, simply believe, then the devil and all the demons would go to heaven since they certainly believe. In the gospel it is only the evil spirits who consistently identify Jesus correctly as the Christ the Son of God. I don’t think they will live with God forever though they believe. (more…)


The Choice of Evil

Job 40.8 asks would you condemn Me to justify yourself?image

A few weeks ago the papers reported another atrocity of ISIS terrorists murdering children in the name of their god. The story I read, reported by a journalist from Great Britain, ended with his comments of disgust concerning religion and its abuse of people. Correctly, this man had a problem with religion that justifies the murder and maiming of children.

Below the surface was his disdain with the belief in god because if there is a god then he should be good and if he is good then he should stop the killing in his name. (more…)


What Happens When We Die?

Luke 20.38 declares He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for to Him all are alive.images

Every religion seeks to answer the question concerning what happens to humanity after we die. Why does this question plague us so?

The educational institutions from grade school through graduate school tell us there is no God. The media confirm this belief by their incessant promotion of atheism and all things antagonistic toward a God Who Created the universe and will hold His creation accountable to His will.

Yet we cant seem to shake the notion that there really is a God and someday we will see Him when we leave this life. All people from all time in all places of the globe have held this nagging question and have created various answers to it.

So why the question and what does happen when we die? (more…)


Becoming Like Children

Luke 18.17 records God promising anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little childimage will never enter it.

This is a very familiar warning to us but few take it seriously because most of us don’t understand what He means to receive the kingdom like a little child.

We usually begin by thinking of sweet and innocent children all of whom will go to heaven because it only seems fair. Those of us who have children however know they are often not so sweet nor innocent but are rather quite overt in their selfishness.

This takes us back to ignoring the meaning of God’s warning because it fails to make sense to us. (more…)


Gaining Recognition

Luke 17.10 commands when you have done everything you were told to do, you should say, ‘We are imagesunworthy servants; we have only done our duty.’

Recognition is a powerful motivator for action. Lack of recognition is equally powerful for causing us to stop taking action.

From the child who thrusts their picture in our face so we will recognize their picture to the ‘mature’ adult who quits because they feel unappreciated; recognition is a powerful desire within our broken lives.

This need causes the adult to work incessantly to please the deceased parent who never recognized their ability and causes marriage to fail because one or both parties feel under appreciated. (more…)