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Archive By Section - Religion

Keeping it real: really forgiven

Last week, I left you hanging. I spent 90 percent of my column showing you from God's word that regardless of what you might try to tell yourself - you don't deserve anything good. I know, that doesn't sound like a very nice thing to do. But the truth is - it's the truth. In fact, the wages of sin is death.

November 01, 2012 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Religion

You’ve got mail

I found out about the stamp ministry a year ago through my mother who started collecting and cutting out used stamps from every piece of mail that comes to the house. She puts them in this little clear plastic baggie that hangs on the side of the refrigerator on a magnet. She then told me that I should start cutting and collecting used stamps because it is so easy to do and serves a good cause.

November 01, 2012 | Nhi Ho | Religion

McCoy: God cares

"I will be glad and rejoice in your unfailing love, for you have seen my troubles, and you care about the anguish of my soul."

November 01, 2012 | Jan McCoy | Religion

Just a thought: The four f's

The life of Solomon can be summed up in four words: Fame, fortune, females and failure. How does someone go from having it all to throwing it all away? Caution! It typically doesn't happen overnight. In fact, if we can learn anything from Solomon's saga, we will see two things: first, a steady decline happens slowly and as a result of a series of life course, destructive decisions. Solomon was so exposed to the things of God; he lost his sensitivity to them to the point of willfully ignoring them. He stopped taking God and the things of ...

November 01, 2012 | Dr. William Burnham | Religion

Burnham: Sharing your thoughts

It is not always important for everyone to know everything you're thinking. However, it is important for us to know God always knows what we are thinking and feeling. And sometimes it is beneficial to both us and others to share in the right setting and with the right people our thoughts and feelings. Christians experience real pain, hurt, illness, confusion and discouragement. But with who and how we share these can make a world of difference. Bottling them up inside is just as harmful to us. So, what do we do with these real thoughts and feelings? 1 ...

October 25, 2012 | Staff Report | Religion

Scharf: Just keeping it real

"Just keeping it real." I've learned to dread that statement, because it usually comes with something I'd rather not hear. You know, they say it's important for a public speaker to have a good critic - someone to honestly and objectively evaluate how you're communicating, what you're saying, all that. Well, God has certainly blessed me with that in my wife. You see... How can I put this? My wife doesn't worry about hurting my feelings when I ask how it went after I've preached. In fact, she tells me she wants to make ...

October 25, 2012 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Religion

Just a thought: Death

We don't like to talk about it, yet we have so many unanswered questions regarding it - death. What about it? God does not want us to be ignorant or unaware nor does the Bible shy away from the topic. In fact it directly answers many of our most common questions. While space does not permit us to do a full examination of the subject, we will deal with the two most important questions about death: 1. Does everyone die? Unless Jesus comes back first, yes, everyone has a date with death " is appointed for men to die once ...

October 18, 2012 | Dr. William Burnham | Religion

Love speaks unconditionally

It was nearly 20 years ago now. My dad took the opportunity to speak to the court at the trial of the man who killed my sister, his daughter. You see, the man had gotten drunk...again, and gotten behind the wheel...again, even though his license had been taken away, even though he knew better, even though he had been warned and cited and told. All this my dad knew.

October 18, 2012 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Religion

A condition of the heart

For the Scriptures say, "If you want to enjoy life and see many happy days, keep your tongue from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies. Turn away from evil and do good. Search for peace, and work to maintain it."

October 18, 2012 | Jan McCoy | Religion

Community in churches

I don't know if you have noticed, but the idea of relationship is changing in the world. Due to the onslaught of social media and smartphones people have become less engaged in the broader community with diversity in age, race, and social class and more engaged with groups that share common ages and interests. In today's culture, there aren't even many avenues to engage with a broad and diverse culture. But fortunately, God has called the church to be such a blending of all types of people.

October 18, 2012 | Jason Dees | Religion

Just a thought: Accountability

One thing is for sure, we are all getting older. While this may be a fact, it doesn't have to be a negative one. I am certain we can all look back and voice some regrets: not taking this opportunity or making the wrong decision here or there. I wish I had done this instead of that, etc. If you were to read the book of Ecclesiastes, you would find Solomon's regrets and advice to the young. He regretted that he forsook his walk with God and forfeited so much that his life (as good as it may ...

October 11, 2012 | Dr. William Burnham | Religion

What if you could change the world?

And some of them were persuaded and joined Paul and Silas, as did a great many of the devout Greeks and not a few of the leading women. But the Jews were jealous, and taking some wicked men of the rabble, they formed a mob, set the city in an uproar, and attacked the house of Jason, seeking to bring them out to the crowd. And when they could not find them, they dragged Jason and some of the brothers before the city authorities, shouting, "These men who have turned the world upside down have come here also."

October 11, 2012 | Jan McCoy | Religion

Love speaks with urgency

You: cute brunette with green eyes shopping with your sister at the mall.

October 11, 2012 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Religion

The four S’s of fasting

In the evangelical world, fasting is the most misunderstood of all of the spiritual disciplines. People don't understanding this discipline and therefore don't practice it. It is however, one of the greatest tools that the church has to know and pursue Godliness. When we fast, the physical pain of hunger drives us to a deeper spiritual hunger or longing for God. You can fast about anything that is on your heart: a big decision, a sin issue, a health problem, a family situation, etc. You will be amazed at how focusing on these things in a fast will ...

October 11, 2012 | Jason Dees | Religion

Scharf: Love speaks with a focused heart

"The church is all about money." You've heard that said, right? How sad when it's true, when good well-meaning Christians start worrying about the budget more than the Bible, when churches show that lack of focus. More accurately, it's when we focus on the wrong thing.

So Paul, in 1 Timothy 6, snaps us back with the very first word of verse 6: "But." You see, just before our text, Paul was warning young Pastor Timothy about false teachers who saw religion as a means for financial gain, those who acted as if the church was all ...

October 04, 2012 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Religion

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