God's Truth About..., Truth for Today

357 – What Can You Do to Save a Sinking Nation?

Comments Off on 357 – What Can You Do to Save a Sinking Nation? 04 July 2014

We live in a day when our nation is being called into question on many fronts. We have come into disrepute among foreign powers so that we are sinking in our international standing. We are sinking morally with decisions being made in courts that are contrary to the teaching of God’s Word. We are sinking economically as we wade our way through the longest recession in our history. We are sinking politically as extremists are calculating how many gains they can make before they are no longer tolerated by a wiser American public than they had anticipated. We need to lift our beloved America up in prayer. It is our responsibility to pray for our nation daily. But, can we do more? Yes, we can! America is not perfect, but I love America. I was born in America. I was educated in America. I was married in America. I have participated in creating two lives through my marriage in America. I have five wonderful grandchildren in America. I have served in America’s military. I love America! But, our America needs to be saved from sinking! You may think you are only one person, so what difference can you make? Think of the individuals God used to save His people in the Bible: David as he slew Goliath, Shamgar who killed thousands of Philistines, Esther who interceded with the king on behalf of her people, Jonah who preached the message of salvation to Nineveh. God can use you and me, if we are willing. Here are some things we need to be doing to save America from sinking:

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356 – Sulk or Surrender

Comments Off on 356 – Sulk or Surrender 26 June 2014

We live in the age of the “Do-it-Yourself-er.” Look at the popular TV networks, the ever noticeable businesses that promote your being a person who is willing to “Do-it-Yourself.” In the face of the self-glorifying philosophy of the new century if is difficult to get people to think in terms of surrendering to God in anything. Most people think they know best. Oh, they may not be arrogant enough to come right out and say so, but they are thinking, “I’ll get this done my way.” We need to be reminded of a man in the Bible who wanted to be healed. He wanted God to heal him in the manner in which he desired to be healed. It was not just a matter of healing, but of “healing his way.” He didn’t accept the prescription of the Divine Physician at first. He didn’t accept that God knew best. He had his own plan. There is a happy ending to the story and it will instruct us as we consider it. This story is of a man named Naaman. It was included in Scripture in 2 Kings 5:11ff.

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355 – Our Great Giver

Comments Off on 355 – Our Great Giver 20 June 2014

Who doesn’t love to receive gifts? From the preschooler who receives a stuffed animal to a child who receives a Sony PS4, Nintendo 3DS, a Nintendo wii u, or an Xbox 1, to a grandmother who receives her grandchild’s hand picked gift just for her, receiving gifts is very special. By the way, I am somewhat knowledgeable of the latest devices, but I checked the list above by my grandson Evans to be sure I knew what I was talking about. Everyone loves to “get” a gift. Behind all of those gifts there must be a willing giver. Every Christian has a Great Giver in our loving heavenly Father. When we think of our needs, we need to remember what kind of Giver He is and what kind of gifts He gives.

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Faith, God's Truth About..., Personal Growth, Truth for Today

352 – Help with Handling Hurts

Comments Off on 352 – Help with Handling Hurts 30 May 2014

Each of us sooner or later experiences some of life’s hurts. There are mental and emotional hurts, physical hurts, financial hurts and more. Sometimes we just have a bad day at work. Sometimes we experience a broken relationship with a spouse, child, friend, business partner. We can look at our check books and be hurt these days with rising fuel costs and inflationary influences around us. Maybe you are like some of us who are still among the unemployed in the country today. Sometimes we will have disturbing news from a physician while trying to deal with a physical hurt. In moments when we hurt where can we obtain help? There is a Helper who will help us handle your hurts. His name is Jesus. He has an intense interest in everything that is going on in our lives. Here is a story that will teach us how He will help us with our hurts. It is in Matt. 14:14ff. In it we learn some important aspects of Jesus process of helping us handle our hurts: Continue Reading

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351 – Authority in the Church

Comments Off on 351 – Authority in the Church 23 May 2014

Who is the one with whom ultimate authority in the church rests? I have taught and practiced through 46 years of ministry that all authority in the church rests with Jesus Christ. It is a question more and more debated in local churches today. There is a great deal of practical violation of the principle this article is based upon. It is easy to give lip device to the statement, “Jesus is Lord.” People do that and fight for preeminence in the church at the same time. Those in Colossae decided Christ was not the living, victorious Savior to whom all authority in heaven and on the earth was given (Matt. 28:18-20). Paul addressed the issue in Colossae with these words: “And he is the head of the body, the church” (Col. 1:18 NIV). Paul gave us some important truths about Christ’s authority. He is the only rightful Lord. Learn with me that Jesus has preeminence in the church because:

1. He is the authentic God – “Christ is the visible image of the invisible God. He existed before anything was created and is supreme over all creation” (Col. 1:15 NLT). In order for God to be known by man He had to make Himself visible to us. Jesus became the same God of heaven in the flesh so we could know Him. We cannot comprehend God by natural means. Paul said that God gave us a perfect representation of Himself in Jesus. He was God in the flesh. Jesus was not a copy. He always has been, is, and always will be God. He is the visible presentation of the invisible God. Jesus is first in priority in life and in the church because He was in the beginning with God and was God (Jn. 1:1-3).

2. He is the Author of all things – “For through him God created everything in the heavenly realms and on earth. He made the things we can see and the things we can’t see— such as thrones, kingdoms, rulers, and authorities in the unseen world. Everything was created through him and for him” (Col. 1:16 NLT). God in Christ created all things, and is creating each life that is formed in the womb today. Each new life is His creation. Thus our fight for the sanctity of human life. Jesus’ creative powers caused the world to be formed and human life to come into the picture. Jesus is the most logical, rational, reasonable explanation of the origin of all things. “Through him God created everything.”

3. He is the adhesive of life – He existed before anything else, and he holds all creation together” (Col. 1:17 NLT). God created all things by His Son, and He is the one who is the glue that holds it all together. Without Him it would all fly apart. The law of gravity would not work without Him. Water would not be the perfect mix of hydrogen and oxygen were it not for HIm. The two would mix to cause a great combustion. Jesus is the One who enabled us to place a man on the moon. He is the One who allows us to have greater dominion by probing the outer reaches of this universe and what is beyond. We are emotional, volitional, spiritual people. We would fall apart in those areas if it were not for the presence of Christ’s glue in our lives. Churches fall apart when Christ is not allowed to be Lord, and individuals fight for preeminence. Families become fragmented when He is not the authority in the home. In each sphere we stay together only when we allow Jesus to hold us together.

4. He is the authority in the church – Christ is also the head of the church, which is his body. He is the beginning, supreme over all who rise from the dead. So he is first in everything” (Col. 1:18 NLT). When a church is fighting Jesus is not first. Jesus proved He has the power over all things, including the grave. So, Paul declared He is the head of the church. We are twice His – by creation and by redemption. He has the right to be Lord over His church. He is the Source of our human lives and of our life in His body–the church. He has all authority and He is our Authority. It is Christ who gives direction and sustaining power to the church. The church is a body. In the church I pastored for over 25 years, we called ourselves “The People’s Church.” Other churches do the same. We meant by that Christ was the Head of the church and the people were the body parts who made up the ministry through the body. It is clear to me that the church belongs to Christ, and that the ministry belongs to the people. In that church I led the people to look for and adopt God’s vision for His church, under the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Christ’s life through each member gives the church her life. If a church is to survive in today’s world the people must function like a body acting on the authority of their Head–Jesus Christ.

5. He is all we need – For God in all his fullness was pleased to live in Christ” (Col. 1:19 NLT). An individual, a family,a church, an organization cannot be complete without Christ. He is the completer of all things. Whatever we need we find in Christ. He is our door into opportunities, our deliver when we are entrapped, our defender when we are attacked, our designer when we need a new plan, our deployer for service in His kingdom.

In every sphere Jesus has all authority! Respect that and reap a reward!

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Faith, God's Truth About..., Personal Growth, Truth for Today

349 – Grumbling or Grateful?

Comments Off on 349 – Grumbling or Grateful? 08 May 2014

When things don’t turn out just as you wanted, do you grumble or are you grateful to God for His blessings in your life? We spend too much of our time fretting that things are not going the way we wanted. Sometimes we miss opportunities to accomplish significant things because of our ingratitude and grumbling spirit. We will look at a story in the Old Testament of two tribes among God’s people, Joseph’s tribes: Ephraim, and Manasseh. They were grumbling about the possession of land and wanted more prestige. They had a misunderstanding about what greatness was. We will learn from them.

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348 – Giving and Receiving

Comments Off on 348 – Giving and Receiving 02 May 2014

My wife and I have lunch at the same restaurant (Franklin Chop House) in Franklin, TN, after attending church on the Sunday mornings, when we are not away from home. We have developed friendships with the management and personnel in the place. One particular lady has been an outstanding waitress for us and gone the extra mile to make our dining experiences pleasurable ones each time we dine there. No matter the size of the crowd, the young ladies who are greeters greet us personally, remember our names, and see to it that we are seated promptly. We are quite blessed by the personality and professionalism of the lady who is our waitress. We are seated in her section each Sunday. Because I have always seen to it that she was given a generous tip for here service, she shows respect and care for us in an unusual way. That is a meaningful example of God’s principles of giving and receiving. We give and, as a result, we receive blessing. Look at a few of these principles with me. The more you give, the more you receive.

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347 – When Your Love Works Out

Comments Off on 347 – When Your Love Works Out 25 April 2014

When we go to a gym, the Y, to an athletic club, or a health club to work out there are several different equipment options and exercises at our disposal. We choose the ones that will address the areas we are trying to shape up. If we were to follow our love life each day and observe how it works out what should it look like? We will see what it should look like! We will observe the exercises it should do regularly. Why is that important? Because the way our love works out will determine our behavior toward our spouse, children, associates at work, classmates, and social acquaintances? Each day we have choices to make in the area of love. The Apostle Paul gave us some important exercises love should do in our daily relationships.

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Faith, God's Truth About..., Personal Growth, Truth for Today

346 – Solace through Surrender

Comments Off on 346 – Solace through Surrender 17 April 2014

Most of us would like a little peace and solace in a world of conflict and confusion. Each morning we awake with new hope only to watch the morning news and have our hopes dashed by reports of rising health care costs, a Federal Government out of control, unrest in areas of vital interest to the United States, political bickering between the parties while the debt ticker is running wild on the national debt, the signs of threatened inflation are ever increasing, and millions of us are still without work. How can we find solace in that kind of world we live in? I am finding the answer is where I have always known it to be, in surrender of some key life events to God! That is why I have entitled these remarks, “Solace through Surrender.”

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God's Truth About..., Personal Growth, Truth for Today

345 – Who Controls Your Life?

Comments Off on 345 – Who Controls Your Life? 11 April 2014

Different people will answer this question differently. Some will say. “I am in control of my own life.” Others will say, “My parents are in control of me.” Others will say, “I am controlled by the one I work for.” Others will say, “I am controlled by a government out of control.” If others are honest they will say, “I am controlled by my desires, needs, and wants.” Still others may say, “I am controlled by my ambitions.” Whomever or whatever controls your life will be apparent in your lifestyle. So, let’s talk about your life and what will make it look its best outwardly because of whom is in control of your life.

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The painting in my logo is by an artist named Kelly O'Neill.

If you appreciate excellence in art and are captivated by works that grip your emotions and proclaim the remarkable truths of God’s Word, you will want to know more about the very compelling art piece that is part of my ministry logo.

Kelly O’Neill is a remarkable young artist who very masterfully depicts the compassion, grace, and redeeming love of Jesus Christ in her painting, “Redeemed.” No painting has so grabbed my emotions and stirred my gratitude to Christ for His redeeming love as this one. Technically unparalleled, inspired, heart-stirring, and mind captivating are words I used upon seeing it for the first time.

Getting to know Kelly and the background of her wonderful work have served as great motivators as I launch out on a new ministry path in my own life. Kelly is also the developer of my website.

I commend her and her work to you and encourage you to visit her website www.TheArtistOfLife.com

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