Jesus: Teacher, Example, or Redeemer??

 

“While the Gospel is something worth contending for, there are right ways and wrong ways to go about this business.”  D.A. Carson

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Mystery of Mysteries

I like a good mystery!  Not the predictable sort; I like the ones that challenge the mind and stretch the imagination. The kind you almost feel like you have to work for to understand.

There is a mystery found in God’s Word. It is the ultimate mystery – A mystery of mysteries. No earthly mystery compares to the mystery of the gospel! Sadly, we do not dwell on the contents or the characters of the mystery enough. But when people do, I find the response is either worship or rebellion. Some behold the mystery and worship, while others grow angry and defiant.

In considering both responses, let’s first unpack the mystery.

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Gospel Things

“As a pastor, I constantly pray and engage the people of the Village Church to keep what is “of first importance” at the center of their thinking, in both their justification and their sanctification. Over the years, I have become painfully aware that people tend to drift away from the gospel soon after their conversion and begin to try their hand at sanctification. In other words, they operate as if the gospel saves them but doesn’t play a role in sanctifying them. In the end, people become exhausted and miss out on the joy of knowing and walking with the Spirit of God. They miss out on intimacy with Jesus.”

Matt Chandler

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This Pastor’s Prayer

I have never posted a prayer. I am not sure if I will ever do so again….I don’t do so to in any way impress anyone… I don’t think I am impressive nor are my prayers!!  Prayer that seeks to show off and impress is not really prayer at all.

But, prayer IS…. revealing. It exposes you, shows your heart, and what makes you tick. With that in mind, the below is raw and unedited….I am not trying to be grammatically correct or polished. It is just…. me sharing with you my prayer as a pastor. And so, I make myself vulnerable and invite you to read my journal and prayer to God one morning last week.

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Time Flies!

Stopwatch

Time, where does it go? Is it just me or does time seem to move increasingly faster the older you get?!? You know the saying…. time flies when you are having fun. But, doesn’t time fly even when you aren’t having fun? Recently, I have been considering some things related to time. Challenging myself about the use of time, and considering God who created time and is beyond time.

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15 Things That Self – Atonement Says

Bridge

I “know” the gospel. I know it factually. And while that may be good (we need to know the gospel) I realize I often do not live in the good of the gospel. I regularly do not “own” it. Whenever, I find myself seeking to self-atone (seeking to earn God’s favor and salvation), I have lost my way from the truths of the gospel. Don’t misunderstand. I believe in “effort”!  Paul said to the Ephesians that we were saved “for good works.”

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I Want To Know What Love Is….

Love Bridge

Pictured above is the Paris – “Love Bridge”.  While I have walked this bridge with my wife, we never “locked” in our love.  The bridge is actually called the Pont des Arts.  Pictures do not do it justice! The Love bridgebridge is famous due to the endless padlocks placed there by lovers. Lock in your love and then throw the keys into the Seine river.  Romantic right?  And, in Paris no less!

The problem is that the guardrail of the bridge was not designed to hold all that extra weight.  The government and local Parisians have been asking tourists to stop locking in their love.  It is ruining their bridge!  The “Love Bridge” is collapsing under the weight of…. “Love”.

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Gospel, Politics, And My Hope Is Built On Nothing Less

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It is that time again where we, here in America, are inundated with reasons to stay away from the mailbox, tv, and voicemail. Tis the season for empty promises, shallow arguments, and overused talking points. Do you remember the last time you took the time to read that shiny flyer in your mailbox? Neither do I, for it seems that the 30 seconds the flyer requires is far too big an investment of time. And so, we drown in political junk mail, campaign commercials, and voicemails to “remember to vote”.

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I Like My Comfort….

Shepherd

 

A quick post this Friday afternoon for you to consider.

I like my comfort!  I like it when things go as planned and when I say “planned”, I am talking about MY plan….of course!  I like things to run smoothly.  Work, family, vacation, and all the rest, should run smoothly and as according to MY plan. And when it doesn’t, others, including God, may receive my displeasure.

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Finish The Race

Finish The Race

 

The apostle Paul, nearing the end of his difficult life, seeks to encourage his friend and son in the faith, Timothy.  Timothy is a pastor in Ephesus, where many of those that he and Paul considered to be friends are now opposing the message of the gospel.  Paul warns of these men and the effect of their false teaching in the church.

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Open Door Equals Smooth Road… Doesn’t It?

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Have you ever assumed that the “open door” equals a “smooth road” equation? In other words, when a new possibility, direction, or opportunity seems to have come your way, does it mean that once you take up the opportunity or walk through that door that it will be smooth sailing?

I find that many well-intentioned Christians, living in America in 2015, answer that question with a strong, “YES”!

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