November 29, 2022
When the Apostle Paul listed the "fruit of the spirit" in the 5th chapter of Galatians, he placed it right after a nasty list, recounting 15 "deeds of the flesh." This fruit list was positioned as a remedy for any Christian who might struggle with any of those earthly issues. In Part I and II of this series, we examined the depths of sin in that “earthly deeds” list. In Part III we opened up the remedy of the fruit of the spirit and began with love, joy and peace. While these three things seem basic to any Christian, they have deep roots in the teaching and example of Jesus himself. As we continue with Part IV of our series, we address the next three fruits on the list: patience, kindness and goodness. Don’t let the simplicity of these things fool you, as they each have the ability to profoundly change your life!
November 22, 2022
In our last two episodes, we spent significant time reviewing and understanding the Apostle Paul’s list of the deeds of the flesh in Galatians the 5th chapter. His reason for such a detailed and uncomfortable list was to give us all a clear push forward and away from such things, so we can walk towards living a new life. To walk in Jesus’ footsteps and do God’s will first and foremost should be the most important aspects of any Christian’s daily life. In this episode, we continue examining the Apostle Paul’s profound contrast between the deeds of the flesh and the fruit of the spirit by methodically opening up each of the nine characteristics listed. What will these nine aspects of the fruit of the spirit teach us? They teach what a true Christian life looks like, sounds like and feels like!
November 15, 2022
Adam was created in the image of God. His physical human nature was fashioned in a way that would glorify God by its very existence. Once he sinned, all that changed. What was once a pure reflection of the heart and mind of God, at best became a muddied and defective reflection. Fast forward thousands of years and we find God’s plan in place to clean up this muddied mess. This cleanup comes through Jesus and his true disciples. As Jesus’ disciples, we are tasked with living above our muddied world. In Part I of this series, we opened up the Apostle Paul’s reasoning regarding walking in the spirit and not fulfilling the desires of the flesh. We began examining Paul’s long list of the works of the flesh, in contrast with the fruit of the spirit. Today we continue this journey toward walking in the spirit!
November 8, 2022
It’s a simple equation with a guaranteed end result. Walk in the spirit and you will not carry out the desires of the flesh. As Christians living in an "anything goes" world, this straightforward statement can be easily overlooked and even ignored. Among the many challenges we face today, being like everyone else is among the most subtle temptations of our human nature. We experience subtle social pressure in our workplace, at school, with friends, family and neighbors. Combine all of that with the never-ending online influence of social media to conform or else be negatively labeled, and we experience an unrelenting onslaught of pressure to conform or suffer. How do we as Christians learn to identify - and then overcome - all that is wrong so we can truly follow all that is right?
November 1, 2022
"Let go and let God." This simple statement is focused on faith and trust, two fundamental challenges for Christians. We may think it’s easy to have faith, but when we are in times of difficulty, the depth of our true faith is revealed and sometimes revealed as seriously lacking. We may think that we have trust, but when pressed, when we feel like we need answers or changes or insight, our trust becomes scarce while anxiety abounds. All of this can be depressing! We can feel like we are letting God down. The good news is that we are not alone in this struggle to let go and let God.
October 25, 2022
Candy, costumes parties and fun! The Halloween season with all of its excitement and trappings is upon us. On top of the fun and the sugar rush, this is a time of year that particularly specializes in seeking to be horrified as another form of entertainment. The party-like atmosphere is generously sprinkled with murder, mayhem, zombies and apocalyptic events - all in the name of thrills. Because of this, anything goes approach, Halloween has become an absolute favorite holiday. The question is, should we as Christians celebrate this day? After all, its origin is firmly rooted in Paganism. Its practices are firmly rooted in over-the-top behavior. Is it a sin for Christians to celebrate or have anything to do with Halloween?
October 18, 2022
Sin is a difficult thing to handle. We are constantly challenged to daily live up to godly standards of righteousness. As our social order expands into countless variations of perceived freedoms, there are many questions that need clarification regarding what is right and wrong in God’s eyes. Today we examine two of those questions. First, is it a sin if I as a Christian get a tattoo? Opinions on this question vary to an amazing degree. Does the Bible guide us on this? Second, is it a sin of I get a blood transfusion? While this is perhaps a small issue for most of us, there are some who have very deep convictions on this matter. What does the Bible say and doesn’t say?
October 11, 2022
Jesus’ true disciples go to heaven. Not only did Jesus make this clear, but several other scriptures show this amazing result of God’s grace upon a life dedicated to walking in Jesus’ sacrificial footsteps. In the first two parts of this three-part series, we uncovered many heavenly privileges, inheritances and responsibilities that these faithful ones will have. However, at the end of our last episode, we left one question unanswered. This question has to do with another group of Jesus’ followers. Several scriptures allude to this second group of followers as being faithful - but not as faithful - as his truest disciples. What happens to them? Do they also go to heaven, or do they have another destiny? Fortunately, the Bible gives us this answer and gives it in surprising detail!
October 4, 2022
Going to heaven is a really big deal. Last week was Part I of our three-part series on what heaven-bound Christians will be doing when they get there. So far we uncovered the mechanics of why only chosen ones are privileged to go to heaven. We began to scratch the surface regarding what these disciples of Jesus will be doing. Turns out the job descriptions we focused on were nothing like what most people envision as heavenly life. In this episode, we dig deeply into what the responsibilities of those heaven bound will be. In addition, we will attempt to understand the “why” of it all by connecting several prophecies and scriptures. Our discoveries will reveal absolutely inspiring details and descriptions of how God’s plan is destined to work!
September 27, 2022
It’s pretty safe to assume that most every Christian looks forward to being in heaven with Jesus if they are faithful to their call of discipleship. While this can be an exciting and positively overwhelming prospect, it can also be a future that is filled with questions. What exactly will the faithful be doing when they get to heaven? How will they spend their time? Many say that the faithful will be continually worshipping God and His son, and there is truth to this. However, there is more. Much more. Understanding what Jesus’ faithful disciples will be doing in heaven requires first putting all of Jesus’ missions in order. If we know what he came to do and NOT do when he walked the earth as a man, we will then know what he has yet to accomplish and how his faithful followers will help him later.