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Showing posts from February, 2015

Better the Devil You Know...?

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“And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again. And He said this plainly. And Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him. But turning and seeing His disciples, He rebuked Peter and said, ‘Get behind Me, Satan! For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man’” (Mark 9:31-33). Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ! I’m sure most of you have heard the saying, “Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t.” It means that it is often better to deal with someone or something you are familiar with and know, even if they are not ideal, than to take a risk with an unknown person or thing. But the problem with such an approach is that the devil you know is still a devil, and no devil has your good in mind. Certainly, no devil should be taken lightly, f…

An Awful, Wonderful Paradox

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The text for today is our Old Testament lesson, Genesis 22:1-18. Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ! Would you deny God in order to save your child’s life? To say that is a difficult question is a huge understatement. It’s an awful question to even consider. But it’s really not a far-fetched question. In fact, given the persecution of Christians throughout the world, it is a question far too many parents actually face. When groups like ISIS line up 21 Christian men for beheading and the only words they can force out of them is a prayer and confession of faith: “Jesus, help me,” they turn to threatening and molesting the children in order to get the parents “to convert.” That’s when the rubber hits the road, when the chickens come home to roost, when theory becomes reality. Loving parents are willing to do almost anything, to make almost any sacrifice, for their child. How far would you go? Would you deny God in order …

The Metamorphoses of Jesus for You

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“And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James and John, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And He was transfigured before them” (Mark 9:2). Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ! Last summer, my grandson, Abbott, got a new pet from his Grandma Aimee. Well, actually he kind of begged it from her. One of the teachers at school had found a couple of caterpillars in her herb garden and Aimee had brought one of them home. Seeing this amazingly creepy, crawly creature, Abbott just knew that he had to have this “calupidder.” And Aimee wisely realized that young boys have a much more urgent need for caterpillars than grandmas. The next day Abbott brought his caterpillar to preschool so that all of his friends could share in this wonder of nature. They put it in a plastic case that Aunt Jessi had once used for hermit crabs, furnished it with a nice branch to which it could attach itself when the time got rig…

A God Big Enough to Get Personal

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“Have you not known? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; His understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the faint, and to him who has no might He increases strength” (Isaiah 40:28-29). Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ! When Henry Norris Russell, Princeton astronomer, had concluded a lecture on the Milky Way, a woman came to him and asked: “If our world is so little, and the universe is so great, can we believe that God pays any attention to us?” Dr. Russell replied, “That depends, madam, entirely on how big a God you believe in.”[i] How big is your God? Is He big enough to create everything out of nothing and to keep it going with only His Word? Is He big enough that the sky serves as His tent and the inhabitants of the earth look like so many grasshoppers as He looks down from his heavenly throne? Is He big enough to move th…