March 2, 2015

The Invisible Presence of God

Thomas Overmiller

We serve and worship an invisible God. He is a Spirit (Jn. 4:24). And no human being has ever viewed God with his eyes (Jn. 1:18). The nation of Israel struggled with this reality. For a period of 400 years (nearly twice the age of the United States of America), they lived immersed in Egyptian culture. Visible gods permeated that culture through statues of all sizes, busts, drawing, paintings, carvings, buildings and monuments, ceremonies, and processions at every turn. The visible aura of the Egyptian pantheon surrounded them. They knew nothing else.

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The Testimony of Your Conscience

Jim Oesterwind

No matter what you do, there will be people in your life that will use it to complain against you. You might hear about it indirectly, but sometimes it is very direct. Paul had a lot of enemies in the church at Corinth. They were very powerful and caused a lot of hurt. These enemies influenced people to be argumentative, needlessly confrontational, and divisive. Worse, these enemies were Christians. Paul described them in his first letter to the Corinthian church:

“Now some are puffed up, as though I were not coming to you. But I will come to you shortly, if the Lord wills, and I will know, not the word of those who are puffed up, but the power. For the kingdom of God is not in word but in power. What do you want? Shall I come to you with a rod, or in love and a spirit of gentleness?” (1 Corinthians 4.18-21)

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America’s First Foreign Missionary Casualty (1)

Mark Minnick

I wish that all believers could experience the immensely enriching benefit that some of us obtain from reading Christian biography. So much of what Hollywood and secular historians portray as the past is just pathetic fabrication. It simply didn’t happen that way.

But factual Christian biography that is reverently written opens a pleasurable and profitable window into the real world of living, breathing, suffering, and embattled saints who, in many cases, are only a few lifetimes removed from us. No descriptions are adequate for the seasons of refreshing many of us experience from being carried back into those times by good books.

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The Garrison of Peace

Devotional comments on the fourth chapter of Philippians

A. T. Robertson

Peace is one of the greatest of blessings. The peace that Christ gives is better than any “king’s peace” of the feudal times. “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you” (John 14:27). This peace of Christ cannot be taken from us by our environment or by earthly circumstance. And yet peace in itself is not the first blessing. “But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable’ (James 3:17).

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A Matter of Worship: The Truth About Sexual Immorality

Steve Thomas

Pastor, I don’t really know where to begin. I guess it all started when I was about twelve. You see, I found some pornography at a friend’s house. Before long, I made every excuse to spend time there so I could rifle through his father’s magazine collection. Through the years it got worse, and now, with the Internet, it all seems out of control. I’m scared.”

These words draw a fictitious composite sketch of men in churches across the country. Pastors hear these sad stories dozens of times. Superficial responses can never bring healing and change to those struggling with sexual sin. We must begin with a strong and often surprising statement: Sexual immorality is a matter of worship.

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