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Showing posts from May, 2016

Memorials Unto God

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Tomorrow is Memorial Day, a federal holiday honoring Americans who died while in active military service. Some people confuse Memorial Day with Veteran’s Day (observed annually on November 11th) that honors everyone who spent time in the Armed Forces. As a former National Guardsman myself, I go out of my way to thank fellow veterans who served our country. This also opens up doors to share the gospel with them.
Memorials are mentioned throughout Scripture to honor God, His people, and to commemorate things He’s done for us. Here are a few examples…
“So this day [the Passover] shall be to you a memorial; and you shall keep it as a feast to the Lord throughout your generations. You shall keep it as a feast by an everlasting ordinance.” - Exodus 12:14
“And you shall put the two stones on the shoulders of the ephod as memorial stones for the sons of Israel. So Aaron shall bear their names before the Lord on his two shoulders as a memorial.” - Exodus 28:12
“Then you shall answer them that the …

Disabled for Christ?

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A friend of mine once sent me an email that intended to be a praise report. Due to personal health issues, he was approved to receive disability payments. This man became (as he called it) “disabled for Christ.”
In one way, it was good news my friend started receiving a consistent income stream. From the time I’ve known him, he’s struggled with finances and keeping a steady job. I can identify with creative individuals who have difficulties finding their niche in the workplace. Aside from that, my friend prefers to be in ministry and occasionally does volunteer work in that area.
On the other hand, I don’t consider being “disabled for Christ” a praise report. Immediately Philippians 4:13 came to my mind, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Sadly, there are people who don’t want to be healed for fear of losing money and people’s sympathy. It reminds of a joke I heard years ago…
A Republican with a hunched back entered a restaurant one afternoon and asked the waitress f…

Crying “Wolf”

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A story you might have heard growing up was “The Boy Who Cried Wolf.” In this Aesop's Fable, a shepherd boy repeatedly tricks nearby villagers into thinking a wolf is attacking his flock. When a wolf actually appears, the villagers ignore the boy’s cries believing it’s another false alarm. As a result, the boy’s sheep gets eaten by the wolf. Variations of this story have been told including a Sesame Street parody called “The Boy Who Cried Monster.”
The Oxford English Dictionary defines cry wolf as a “call for help when it is not needed, with the effect that one is not believed when one really does need help.” Sadly this sort of thing happens within the Body of Christ. Self-appointed watchdogs believe their calling in life is fault-finding preachers they don’t agree with. They flood the Internet with web sites attacking various ministries without mentioning those they actually approve of.
A popular Scripture used by Christian critics is Matthew 7:15, “Beware of false prophets, who co…

M. O. M. (Memories of Mother)

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In these last days, Satan is trying to pervert gender distinctions. Currently the media is flooded with reports of men “identifying as women” fighting for the right to use women’s bathrooms (and vice versa). For the past ten years, Spain has issued birth certificates replacing “Father” and “Mother” with “Progenitor A” and “Progenitor B.” No matter how the world tries to redefine the family unit, children cannot be born without a mother. 
On this Mother’s Day, I want to honor the woman who brought me into this world 52 years ago in Fargo, North Dakota. Growing up in the bordering city of Moorhead, Minnesota, I wasn’t fond of the traditional church we attended as a family. Still my mother made sure my sister and I said our prayers before going to sleep. If there was a thunderstorm outside, Mom told us God’s angels were bowling (the loudest claps of thunder meant they got a strike). She happened to be an avid bowler.
Football is another sport my mother enjoys. We've spent many Sundays …

From Cover to Cover

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A few days ago I finished reading the Bible from Genesis to Revelation. This was the first time I had done so in my 25 years of following the Lord Jesus Christ. Previously I read through the New Testament in its entirety but knew I needed to do the same with the Old Testament. There have been people I witnessed to who asked if I read the entire Bible. (Until I had done so, I replied, “I’ve read enough to know I’m going to heaven when my life ends. How about you?”)
While conducting polls at his meetings, one well-known evangelist determined as many as 80% of believers never read the whole Bible. He pointed out the early Christians didn’t have a New Testament to read. The Bereans “…searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.” (Acts 17:11) They studied Old Testament passages to verify that Jesus was the prophesied Messiah. There are many other truths we can learn from the saints of old. 1 Corinthians 10:11 says, “Now all these things happened to them as example…