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Motives for Godly Living

Are there things in life that you need motivation to accomplish? Going to the gym? Cleaning the house? Homework? It is natural to need motivation. You can read books about how to become motivated, listen to motivational music, etc. In fact, some people make a living at being “motivational speakers.” When it comes to motivation, some people are self-motivating and others require an outside source. Even when we turn our attention to Christianity, the same is true – we need…

Making Our Compassion Cards WORK

As a congregation, we’ve been writing and sending “compassion cards” to various neighbors, friends, and even some family members, for about three months now. As far as I know, we’ve received only positive feedback from those who have received them, and no one has complained about receiving them. Compassion cards “raise our profile” in the community (that is, they cause the recipients to “notice” the church in a positive way – and this is a good thing!). Compassion cards are…

Worship In Sorrow

In our lives, there are times when we assemble together with the rest of the church body, and we find it difficult to focus on our worship to God, because of the time of sorrow in our life. We may tell ourselves something along the lines of, “I just have too much going on right now. I’ll worship better next time.” The truth is, albeit hard to accept sometimes, that those are the times in our life where we should…

Being HOLY

God told ancient Israel, “…I am the LORD your God. You shall therefore consecrate yourselves, and you shall be holy; for I am holy. Neither shall you defile yourselves with any creeping thing that creeps on the earth. 45 For I am the LORD who brings you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God. You shall therefore be holy, for I am holy” (Lev. 11:44-45). God called His people to be “holy” from the very beginning…

Do Not Be Bitter – Be Better

We all know who they are. Maybe they are a friend, a co-worker, or a family member. Even sadly, they are found amongst God’s people: the church. They walk around with hatred and anger in their hearts. They rarely smile, and their words are infused with venom. Their attitude is sour, and their demeanor is repulsive. These people suffer from a sin the Bible calls “bitterness.” It can be found in all walks of life, from the workforce to sports.…

Reach Out to Grow

Acts 8:4 says that early Christians responded to the vicious persecution of Saul and other Jewish leaders by going “everywhere preaching the gospel.” That first generation of the church grew at an astounding rate – thousands of new Christians in only a few months, perhaps hundreds of thousands in only a few years. The key to their phenomenal growth is the fact that “ordinary” Christians did the sharing, caring, and teaching. They didn’t wait for elders, preachers, or “experts” to…

In ALL Your Ways…

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; 6 In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” (Proverbs 3:5-6) Do you ever find yourself paying “lip service” to God? We are diligent to attend bible classes, worship assemblies, and even gospel meetings and vacation bible school; yet even in such outward appearances of “faithfulness,” is it ever the case that we’re merely going through the motions? In Acts 8:4…

She Thought I Was Jesus!

At the front door of the church building, Valerie ran to hug my neck and greeted me with this astonishing revelation: “You’re Jesus!” (Valerie was four years old). As I tried to explain that my name is Dave, she insisted that I was “Jesus.” She finally showed me the picture she had colored in bible class that morning, that depicted Jesus with some of His disciples. Pointing to “Jesus,” she emphatically declared, “That’s YOU!” (I think her misunderstanding lay in…

Do Not Be Afraid

If you were to ask me who I would want to meet if I could meet anyone in the bible, aside from Jesus, I would tell you Joshua. I love Joshua! In fact, it is interesting to note that Jesus and Joshua are the same name; Joshua is the English spelling of the Hebrew name Yehoshua, and Jesus is the English spelling of the Greek form of the same name. When I think about the person Joshua, I think of…

Why Churches Grow

(Editor’s note: This article by a long-time friend and gospel preacher seems appropriate to our current emphasis on outreach and evangelism. Please read it carefully and consider the points made!) Over the last few years, numerous books and articles have been written about why churches grow (or don’t grow). They have offered all kinds of solutions to the problems of declining church growth. Some of their ideas are: Bigger buildings / Better location / Good publicity / Plenty of parking…

Getting the Most Out of Worship

Why do you come to worship? Is it to give something or to get something? Well neither is wrong, in fact, both are to be expected and done by all. The problem comes when Christians focus only on getting something out of “worship.” They are takers. They want to be encouraged, edified, leave worship feeling good, programs that focus on them, and when a congregation doesn’t deliver then they move on. However, it is only when we “give” in worship…

Basic Facts from… The REVELATION (Part 11)

In Revelation 12-17 John saw Satan (the “dragon”) and his allies (the “beasts” and then the “great harlot”) presented as emblems of the evil one’s power and overwhelming determination to conquer the faithful through persecution, trial and seduction. From chapter 17:16 onward he saw these same forces being overcome – in reverse order – by the power of God (first the harlot, 18:2, then the “beasts,” 19:19-21, and finally in chapter 20, the “dragon” himself, Satan). Just as Satan’s servants…