Without Holiness...

16th Apr 2022

Make every effort to live in peace with everyone and to be holy; without holiness no one will see the Lord. Hebrews 12:14 (NIV)

Is holiness a subject that anyone should bring up in “polite company?” If they even know what you are talking about, there is a good possibility that they will not have a proper understanding of what holiness really is all about.

If people have an adverse reaction to the concept of holiness, it may not be that they are opposed to holiness, but instead, they are ope...

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We Want to See Jesus

13th Apr 2022

 “Sir, we want to see Jesus.” John 12:21

In the days leading up to the crucifixion, some men wanted to see Jesus. They did not approach him directly but instead sought to use Philip as an intermediary. We cannot be sure, but perhaps they felt uncomfortable, as Greeks, to approach Jesus. Philip, having a Greek name, seemed like a possibility.

We do not know why these men tried to see Jesus. Some men wanted to see him so that they could worship him. While others, like Herod the Great, felt th...

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We pleaded with you, encouraged you, and urged you to live your lives in a way that God would consider worthy. For he called you to share in his Kingdom and glory. 1 Thessalonians 2:12 (NLT)

Words and concepts often have surface meanings that belie vast depths and rich significance. As a student of Scripture without training in Greek and Hebrew, I may, at times, overlook great treasures. For example, the word “encouraged.” At E4 Ministry Network, it is one of our core values. If asked to de...

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Empowered to Empower

19th Mar 2022

And look, I am sending you what my Father promised. As for you, stay in the city until you are empowered from on high.” Luke 24:49 (CSB)

Some people will remember the American Express slogan from the 1970s, “Don’t leave home without it.” It was a successful campaign that ran for 25 years. Although there were alternatives to that credit card, there are no alternatives to being empowered by the Holy Spirit. As Jesus said to the disciples, “stay in the city until you are empowered from on ...

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The concept of eternity is often beyond the capability of our intellects to grasp. Surveying Christian history, we find conflicting thoughts and ideas about time and how it intersects with eternity. On the one hand, James Milton Black, who wrote “When The Roll Is Called Up Yonder,” penned the words, “and time shall be no more.” Conversely, John Newton in Amazing Grace declared, “when we’ve been there ten thousand years.” Can we reconcile these two thoughts?

Support for the concept that t...

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So let us discern for ourselves what is right; let us learn together what is good. Job 34:4 (NLT)

Let me begin with a question. How great is our need for discernment? There is a meme that has been floating around the Internet for several years: “Don’t believe everything you see on the Internet.”-Abraham Lincoln. Regardless of our sources of information, we must develop discerning hearts and minds.

One of the significant challenges of our age is to filter all the competing voices vying to pe...

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Because of his love, God had already decided to make us his own children through Jesus Christ. That was what he wanted and what pleased him, and it brings praise to God because of his wonderful grace. God gave that grace to us freely, in Christ, the One he loves. Ephesians 1:5–6 (NCV)

“Wonderful grace of Jesus, greater than all my sin; how shall my tongue describe it, where shall its praise begin? Taking away my burden, setting my spirit free, for the wonderful grace of Jesus reaches me.”...

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The Brevity of Life

22nd Feb 2022

Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom. Psalm 90:12 (NIV)

I don’t know who coined the phrase “The length of our lives is represented by a dash between two dates,” but it is undoubtedly a concise way of stating what most people sense, especially as they get older, that life passes by quickly.

Last month, I received my Medicare card, so I suppose that that officially makes me a “senior citizen.” I am probably in some denial, and I can relate to someone who said, “I c...

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To Swim or to Stand

4th Feb 2022

Be alert, stand firm in the faith, be courageous, be strong. 1 Corinthians 16:13 (CSB)

Yes, I try to find common ground with everyone, doing everything I can to save some. 1 Corinthians 9:22 (NLT)

As we age, it is commonly believed that change becomes more difficult for many of us. Perhaps it is because we want to hold onto those familiar and comfortable things for us. This notion can be an obstacle to fulfilling our commission to “go and make disciples among all nations. ”  The forces t...

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Swim in the River of God

20th Jan 2022

He measured off another thousand, but now it was a river that I could not cross, because the water had risen and was deep enough to swim in—a river that no one could cross. He asked me, “Son of man, do you see this?” Then he led me back to the bank of the river. Ezekiel 47:5–6 (NIV)

Ezekiel presents us with a vision. There is a life-giving river flowing from the temple. In essence, it is the blessing of God coming from his presence. We see a river over 2 miles wide. For those with a desire to...

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Feed My Lambs

14th Jan 2022

When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?” “Yes, Lord,” he said, “you know that I love you.” Jesus said, “Feed my lambs.” John 21:15 (NIV)

I could not believe what I was hearing; a pastor was telling, perhaps even bragging, that in his church, he preaches only the meat of the word, never milk. Maybe he was trying to say that he never compromised the truth of Scripture, but it did not sit well with me. I wondered if he had any...

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Four Words

9th Jan 2022

“In the Beginning God…” Genesis 1:1

 “In the beginning God” may be the four most important words in the Bible. This is the introduction for everything else that is to follow. If we do not understand it correctly, all conclusions regarding life, meaning, and purpose will be flawed. If you start in the wrong place, it is unfeasible to build a life that will fulfill its ultimate purpose and destiny.

Getting to the correct destination can be challenging if we do not begin in the right pla...

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