Do you have any features that look like your mom's or dad's? Maybe you have his eyes, her nose or some other characteristic. Do you have any of your heavenly Father's features? "Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God…" (Rev.4:8) But what about His children? We are told throughout scripture that we are to be as He is; (Lev. 11:44a; 19:2; 20:7,26; 1 Peter 1;15; 1 John 1:7).
Last Wednesday, at about midnight, one guy shoved something up my dad's nose, another person shoved something down his throat, and then the kicker – this guy took a knife and cut my dad's midsection wide open. And we thanked him for it.
Psalms 139 is the strongest, most undeniable argument for when "life" begins in the womb. This passage makes it very clear all life is divinely ordained by God, formed by God, and designed by and developed by God. Having said that, let's talk about our own life.
Ecclesiastes 3:9-14 (Contemporary English Version): "What do we gain by all of our hard work? I have seen what difficult things God demands of us. God makes everything happen at the right time.
We go through a lot to do "church". Think of the time and money and effort and energy put into making sure we've got a place to meet on Sundays, all the work that goes into the various events and traditions. People give up so much in the name of church, so today I ask you, "Why?" What's the point?"
OK guys, we've got a problem, it's Valentine's Day. If there was ever a day the pressure is on to prove your love, this is it. And there are countless ideas out there, but every one of them could just as easily backfire, since one woman might love what another would not. And if you ask your special someone how you can show your love, well, then you run the risk of her saying that if you really loved her you'd know.
God hates sin, not sinners. He hates sin because of what it does to the sinner (redeemed and unredeemed). For the redeemed, yielding themselves to sin can lead them back into the dominant control and slavery they have been set free from. For the unredeemed, sin piled upon sin takes them deeper into sin and farther from a sensitivity to God and need for salvation. Sin at its most basic form means to "miss the mark" Romans 2:23 tells us we have all done this. So in essence sin is sin is sin. But there are some sins God ...
Aren't you thankful today for the wonderful saving grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, who through His salvation, our spiritual identity and eternal destiny were changed? (2 Cor. 5:17; Romans 6:23b).
I have so many great memories of my grandma, especially when all the cousins would be together, playing in the basement while all the grown-ups were upstairs. Sometimes, we even all got to stay overnight down there. It was awesome, except for one thing: the coatrack. It was one of those things that was always there but you didn't always notice it, unless it was the middle of the night and you woke up and looked toward the one ray of light. That's when I saw what I was sure was a person or a monster - whatever it ...
Last week, we saw the righteousness that Jesus "filled up" for us – and put on our record in our baptism. We saw him doing everything that was "fitting" for that righteousness, living a perfect life, more perfect than even the most polished celebrity at the most posh event could ever be.
Some things are just fitting, aren't they? They are just supposed to be a certain way. Take the Golden Globes. Did you see the show? Everyone who is anyone in Hollywood was there. And everything was just right.
"How great are his signs, how mighty his wonders!" (Daniel 4:3) These words spoken by a king of the King of kings and Lord of lords are to be the focus of every Christian in today's world.
Do you ever feel that being a child of God isn't paying out like you thought it should? The childlike confidence that Jesus will make everything better doesn't always seem to play out - when the wound doesn't heal, the need isn't met, the hurt doesn't go away. For us grown-ups, reality tends to set in and tarnishes some of that unbridled optimism.
If you are a bookkeeper, you understand the importance of organized filing and record-keeping. You are the ones we turn to in order to find a proof of a check, an important document or policy, etc.
With precision and accuracy God lays out his plans and works toward the accomplishment of his purpose.
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When you spread out your hands in prayer, I will hide my eyes from you; even if you offer many prayers, I will not listen.
The Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., once said, "It is appalling that the most segregated hour of Christian America is 11 o'clock on Sunday morning." Indeed his quote still holds true today. I would argue, however, that it is far worse. Not only are those who profess faith in Christ separated in most churches by the color of their skin, they are separated by much more. We are far quicker to tell you what denomination we are than to tell you of the Christ we follow.
Just reading a verse, or a chapter of the Bible a day won't keep the devil away anymore than an apple a day will really keep the doctor or dentist away. However, reading the word of God for the purpose of growth and understanding will greatly aid you in spiritual growth, wisdom and discernment, which will help you not buy into the lies and schemes of the devil.
When I look around me at church, I'm often struck by one thing about the people I see. They are different. I know that might not sound like that much of a compliment - but I see it as an amazing gift from God. Truly. The faces in our congregation range from young to old, the voices from weak to strong, the billfolds from thick to thin, the vigor from faint to healthy, the skin tone from black to white and everything in between. We are different.
"I know the Lord is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me. No wonder my heart is glad, and I rejoice. My body rests in safety. For you will not leave my soul among the dead or allow your holy one to rot in the grave. You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever.
In the late 1950s, the University of Georgia football team had an outstanding lineman who was voted All-SEC and an All-American in the 1959 and 1960 seasons. He would go on to coach under Bear Bryant at the University of Alabama, and eventually he would become the head football coach of Auburn University from 1981–1992. Pat Dye won 99 games at Auburn, including four SEC Championships; he also coached many All-Americans and even a Heisman trophy winner named Bo Jackson.
First Baptist has had a partnership with church planters in Indonesia now for three years, and because of this partnership, in 2010 and in 2012, I have had the opportunity to go to Indonesia to teach these church planters.
When Moses had finished giving these instructions to all the people of Israel, he said, "I am now 120 years old, and I am no longer able to lead you. The Lord has told me, 'You will not cross the Jordan River.' But the Lord your God himself will cross over ahead of you. He will destroy the nations living there, and you will take possession of their land. Joshua will lead you across the river, just as the Lord promised... So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord your ...
Well, we're three weeks in to 2013. Have you kept your resolutions so far? Or are you realizing again this year that the New Year's resolutions were tougher than they sounded on Jan. 1?
"When were you saved?" Have you ever been asked that question? When were you saved? Maybe it's just because of my line of work, but I get that question all the time.
"Therefore, let the entire house of Israel know with certainty that God has made him both Lord and Messiah, this Jesus whom you crucified." Now when they heard this, they were cut to the heart and said to Peter and to the other apostles, "Brothers, what should we do?" Peter said to them, "Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ so that your sins may be forgiven; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you, for your children, and for all who are far away ...
They say you find God in the strangest places. Well, the story of Christmas proves it. Read Luke 2. Even though the text starts in the Emperor's palace of the most powerful nation on earth, when "Caesar Augustus issued a decree," and it passes through every place of power and beauty you can imagine from the Governor's mansion of Quirinius to every corner of the known world - we find it settling down in Nazareth, a nothing town. We see the spotlight rest on a poor engaged couple with not enough resources to even secure a decent bed. That ...
"You can fool some of the people some of the time, but you can't fool all the people, all of the time."
We have all heard that quote, but here is another: "You can never fool God or yourself." Those two always know the "real" truth. So, let's ask the tough question, "Are you for real?" Or you do look like you have it all together on the outside, but on the inside you're not who others really think you are? May I remind you, God sees and knows all things. His name "El Shaddi" means "One ...
Are you a New Year's resolution maker? Or are you someone who used to make New Year's resolutions but never kept them and so now you don't even bother? Wherever you fall on this paradigm, a New Year is a good thing. It is a great time to evaluate your life and to make adjustments if needed. There is an old adage that rings true, "A life not evaluated is not worth living."
"Teacher, what is the greatest commandment in the Law?" [Jesus] replied, "You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your being, and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: You must love your neighbor as you love yourself. All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commands.