Right in the middle of the book of Ephesians, which contains the most complete, accurate, and detailed description of the church, which is Christ’s body, there is this nugget… Ephesians 3:17-18 Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his Continue reading Rooted and Grounded in Love
By the power of God; literally, in power of God (2 Corinthians 4:7; 1 Corinthians 2:4; 1 Corinthians 4:20). “For the kingdom of God is not [only] in word, but in power.” 1411 dýnamis (from 1410 /dýnamai, “able, having ability“) properly, “ability to perform” (L-N); for the believer, power to achieve by applying the Lord’s inherent abilities. “Power through God’s ability” (1411 /dýnamis) is needed in every scene of life to really grow in sanctification and prepare for heaven (glorification). Continue reading Living by the power of God
What is the battle between the flesh and the spirit described in Galatians? The sinful nature  wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are the opposite of what the sinful nature  desires. These two forces are constantly fighting each other, so you are not free to carry out your good intentions. (Galatians 5:17 NLT) Do you think this means living the pious life of a religious Continue reading The shocking war between the good intentions of the flesh and the spirit
Towards the end of the Apostle Peter’s exhortation to the exiles scattered throughout the provinces of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia, he shares this nugget. The amazing truth and beauty of this passage is somewhat obscured by the King James English, so let’s look at several different translations… Casting all your care  upon him; for he careth  for you. (1 Peter 5:7 KJV)
Now at the intersection of three lifelines: the scriptures point to Jesus Christ (John 5:39), the Son of God, the great I AM (Exodus 3:14) who is the root and offspring of the Patriarch King David through whom the savior has come to rescue you. It always has been about you, it always is about you, and it always will be about you.
There are lots of stories of Christmas and The First Noel. Instead of worrying about which of these are myths, fables, and traditions, let’s read the actual inspired account. This is just a few short pages and only takes a few minutes, but it’s more thrilling and more uplifting than any mere myth, fable, or tradition could possibly be. Starting with the prophecy of Isaiah written more than 700 years before the birth of Jesus Christ…
What did Jesus teach about serving others? Many leaders in the Christian community are identified as Christian “ministers”. This tradition leads many to equate Christian ministry with clergy or leadership over Christian congregations. In scripture, a “minister” is simply a “servant” and “ministry” relates to “service”. How can one be both a servant to, and an authority over, God’s people?
The struggle of mankind’s plans versus God’s plans has affected history for thousands of years and it is affecting us today. The church is God’s creation and workmanship. It is eternal in nature and too big to become the exclusive province of one group of partisans. Why not be big and wise enough to see this? Rehoboam and Jeroboam divided the Kingdom of Israel The division has lasted about 3,000 years. But, God is not impressed! It hasn’t changed his plans. Continue reading Mankind has divided and conquered! God is not impressed.
If we lived 2,000 years ago, what would a church service look like? How did they meet? And, why couldn’t it work like that today? 1 Corinthians 14:26 Well, my brothers and sisters, let’s summarize. When you meet together, one will sing, another will teach, another will tell some special revelation God has given, one will speak in tongues, and another will interpret what is said. But everything that is done must strengthen all of you.
You may have thought God could only use superstars. But, this is not true, God can use anyone, if they are willing. God is very clear that these 8 gifts are given by him to ordinary people for service in your congregation… προφητείαν — prophecy; the gift of communicating and enforcing revealed truth διακονεῖ / διακονίαν — to serve (as a servant), waiting at table; in a wider sense: service, ministration διδάσκων — to teach (literally, “cause to learn”); instruct, impart knowledge (disseminate information) Continue reading 8 Gifts of Service for Your Church