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Blessed are the Peacemakers….

The Mount of the Beatitudes sits on the top of a hill overlooking the Sea of Galilee. As we approach the park that now encloses the top of the hill, signs remind us to be silent because we are on holy ground. It was here on this very hill that Jesus sat down with his disciples and taught them about the Kingdom of God. Here in this place, as groups gather in various small clusters around the mount, one gets a feeling of what "Blessed" really means. The verses of Matthew 5 that capture the words of Jesus line the ...

June 28, 2015 | Jan McCoy | Columnists


Pride and pride

Two words come to mind when we consider the parable of the prodigal son "Pride and Pride"

June 28, 2015 | William Burnham | Columnists


From weeping to joy

"Alongside Babylon's streams, there we sat down, crying because we remembered Zion."

June 20, 2015 | Jan McCoy | Columnists


Find them all

Do you see them? No really they are everywhere! Come on surely you do see them.

June 14, 2015 | William Burnham | Columnists


Just a thought

I once went for a job interview and was offered the job based upon my passing the physical. It was as a result of the physical exam that I discovered I had a tumor in my bladder. Praise God! The short story is that I was blessed to be able to have the tumor surgically removed and have been bladder cancer free ever since.

June 07, 2015 | William Burnham | Columnists


Trust in the Lord

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; don't rely on your own intelligence. Know him in all your paths, and he will keep your ways straight. Proverbs 3:5-6 (Common English Bible)

May 31, 2015 | Jan McCoy | Columnists


Jockeying is for small people

Just a Thought: Jockeys are typically small people. Interestingly enough typically so are those people who spend much of their time "jockeying" for position (regardless of their physical size).

May 31, 2015 | William Burnham | Columnists


From a mother's heart

"Three days later Mary, the mother of Jesus, was at a wedding feast in the village of Cana in Galilee. Jesus and his disciples had also been invited and were there. When the wine was all gone, Mary said to Jesus, "They don't have any more wine." Jesus replied, "Mother, my time hasn't yet come: You must not tell me what to do." Mary then said to the servants, "Do whatever Jesus tells you to do." John 2:1-5 (Contemporary English Version)

May 10, 2015 | Jan McCoy | Columnists


A clear and present reminder

Just a Thought: God's Word, prophetic or otherwise, is a clear and present reminder to us that He has all things under control. He has a plan both for our lives and all of eternity. There is to be a balance between knowing and studying what will one day happen with what we ought to do about today.

May 10, 2015 | William Burnham | Columnists


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Archive By Section - Columnists


Grace Notes: Some things to remember

What makes that picture bring tears to your eyes? What makes that song bring a smile to your face? Or, on the flipside, what makes that voice to you like fingernails on a chalkboard? One thing - memories. Memories change all your experiences; they fill your life with emotion. Now, the big thing is - what are you remembering? Because what you remember will change your life, for good or bad.

April 09, 2010 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Grace Notes: What makes this

We call this Good Friday. Think about that - "good." We call it good when we see a man die - and not just die, die brutally. "Good." On this day we contemplate the most famous six hours in the history of the world. We witness through the record in scripture the most talked about execution that has ever happened. On Good Friday, we remember the blood and the brutality of scourge and nail and thorn. And we call it "Good."

April 02, 2010 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Parson to Person: Why am I a Christian?

There are two questions I often ask people who claim to be Christians. First, I ask them why they are Christians and second I ask them what I would have to do to make them doubt the validity of their faith. Now that second question may seem strange coming from a pastor, but it is a question that we as Christians must adequately answer.

April 02, 2010 | Dr. John Pearrell | Columnists


Live your Hosanna!

March Madness! You know what I'm talking about. Our country goes crazy over this basketball tournament. If you've ever found yourself yelling your cheers at a television set watching a game, you get it. If you've ever seen the fans who are actually at those games - you understand why we call it March Madness. Can you explain the urge to wave signs, scream yourself horse and high-five complete strangers? Madness.

Well, this Sunday in the church year is what I like to think of as March Madness - God style. It's Palm Sunday, the day Jesus rode ...

March 26, 2010 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Parson to Person: Proof of God: the teleological argument

I am in a series exploring the classic proofs for God. Let me clarify for you that these "proofs" are not final proof positive for God, rather they are more like clues or evidence which, when looked at, lead us to certain conclusions concerning the existence or, for some, the non-existence of God. Personally I find the clues given us by the arguments of these classic evidences compelling.

March 19, 2010 | Dr. John Pearrell | Columnists


Grace Notes: God’s grace to make big decisions

Do you like to make big decisions? There are so many factors to weigh, so many pros and cons to sift through, so many variables to consider. Wouldn't it be nice if God just made all the decisions for us?

Well, he loves us too much for that - so, after making us his own, he gives us the ability to make some decisions. Realize, this is not something to take lightly. The decisions we make have a pretty profound impact on who we become. Thankfully, God gives us some guidance.

March 19, 2010 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Parson to Person: No man has seen God

Last week I began a series of articles on the subject of evidences for God. While "no man has seen God" (God the Father that is-John 1:18), that doesn't mean that we cannot know that there is a God. (Psalm 19; Romans 1). Indeed that verse in John 1:18 goes on to say, "No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known" (John 1:18, ESV).

March 12, 2010 | Dr. John Pearrell | Columnists


Grace Notes: Why good things happen

Last week, we saw Jesus teaching us why bad things happen. If you missed that one, check online at www.covnews.com or the full sermon at www.abidinggrace.com. But this week, I want to look at the flipside of that - why good things happen. We got a preview of that when last week Jesus told us to repent when we saw bad things because we are really the ones that deserve them. Repentance is turning around. So now the reason for good things happening is pretty clear.

March 12, 2010 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Grace Notes: God’s grace to deal with bad things

As if it wasn't bad enough that an earthquake devastated Haiti, now Chile too. What's going on? Why did so many people have to lose their homes, their stuff, their lives? Or I suppose we could make it more personal: Why did my loved one have to die? Why did I have to get sick? Have you ever asked questions like that? How you ever lamented that things just weren't fair?

March 05, 2010 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Parson to Person: Can you prove there is a God?

Lately I have been asked a recurring question by various individuals. The question is, "Can you prove there is a God?" Generally my first response to such a question is, "I can certainly give you the evidence for why I believe there is a God, but before I do that, I need to know, what evidence are you prepared to accept?"

March 05, 2010 | Dr. John Pearrell | Columnists


Grace Notes: God’s grace will keep you under his wings

Ahh Lent. It's here. Last week was Ash Wednesday, and now we find ourselves in this season of repentance, these 40 days to focus our attention on the suffering of our Savior and our sins that caused it. And that's good. You see, in order to appreciate the victory of Easter - we have to deal with the honesty of Lent. Christianity is not some pie-in-the-sky wishful thinking. It's so truthful and factual it hurts. It hurts when we realize what we deserve. It hurts when we realize what Jesus had to go through for us. But the ...

February 26, 2010 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Parson to Person: Government cannot be allowed to silence religion

I have spent the last three weeks warning my readers of the dangerous trend that we are taking in this country when it comes to silencing the voice of religion in general (but more specifically Christianity in particular) from the public sphere. Even as I write this article, I have learned that a new lawsuit has been entered into our already over-burdened judicial system claiming that allowing ministers a certain tax-break is a violation of the establishment clause of the first amendment. If the plaintiff's succeed in this case, it is not a far leap to assume that their ...

February 26, 2010 | Dr. John Pearrell | Columnists


Grace Notes: God’s true love unveiled

I'll admit it. I married up. If you meet my wife, I can easily see you asking "What did she see in him?" Have you ever wondered that about a couple? What do they see in each other?

February 19, 2010 | Jonathan E. Scharf | Columnists


Parson to Person: Seperation of church and state will kill our freedom

George Washington, the father of our country, stated in his farewell address, "Do not let anyone claim to be a true American if they ever attempt to remove religion from politics." Mahatma Gandhi said, "Those who believe that religion and politics aren't connected don't understand either"

February 19, 2010 | Dr. John Pearrell | Columnists


Parson to Person: Legislating morality

Thomas Jefferson, our Third President, remarked "The reason that Christianity is the best friend of Government is because Christianity is the only religion in the world that deals with the heart." And George Washington the Father of our Country said, "Do not let anyone claim to be a true American if they ever attempt to remove religion from politics."

February 12, 2010 | Dr. John Pearrell | Columnists


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