Jesus Didn’t Come to Start A New Religion.

RvR

How many more minutes before the church service would be over? That’s all I could think about. Every agenda item on the scheduled liturgy was just something else I would have to endure. My mind worked hard to calculate and estimate how much time each of these “perfunctories” would demand: Invocation – two minutes. Reading from Psalms – five minutes. Hymn #124 – three to five minutes. Hymn #291 – another three to five minutes. Sermon – twenty-five minutes, if I was lucky. And on and on it went until the mental calculator registered fifty-five minutes. Fifty-five minutes?! Fifty-five minutes to g … [Read more...]

Martin Luther called this verse “the Gospel in miniature…”

Martin Luther

Take some time in prayer today to consider the incredible lengths that Jesus Christ has gone to in order to forge a friendship with you. Carefully consider the one verse of Scripture which the church reformer, Martin Luther, called “the heart of the Bible, the Gospel in miniature”:“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life(John 3:16).”Told differently: “God”……………………………………….……………………………..….The greatest Lover “so loved”……………………………………………………………………The greatest Degree “the world”…………………………………………… … [Read more...]

What kind of “fishing” was Jesus talking about?

What role does a church community play in the work of evangelism? A great place to start in looking at this theologically is the actual words and context of Christ's determination: "I will make you fishers of men (Matt. 4:19)." For starters, was his metaphor of ministry about poles or nets?Read my recent article in Leadership Journal called “Rod and Reel, or Net?” The Pole vs. The Net. – A Fishing Mindset What does it mean when our efforts to evangelize are more communitarian? And, how can we help people get “caught into a community”? What is the difference between a pole fishing mindset … [Read more...]

Working On Your Joy?

“I will say it again: Rejoice!” - Philippians 4:4b I know Christians are supposed to be joyful people. And I realize that joy is a result of having the Spirit in me. . .that among all the people of the earth, Christians have the greatest reason to be full of joy. But, sometimes life steps in and robs me of the joy. I know I should feel it, but sometimes I just don’t. The question emerges: Is joy something I should just wait for? Will it just come upon me?I am not alone. There seems to be a great absence of joy in the lives of many Christians and congregations today. Of the several “fruit of t … [Read more...]

Living Life From the Soul

"...the Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, ...and the man became a living soul." Gen. 2:7 NIV/KJV "The tragedy of man is not that we die, but that which dies in us while we still live." Albert Schweitzer We were designed by God to live life one way . . . from the soul.  For some reason, however, more often than not, most end up living life in almost every other way except that one.When a young adult begins to discover how to tap the resources of their soul, they find a virtually inexhaustible supply of strength, motivation, … [Read more...]


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