Sermon: Encourage One Another

Encourage One Another 1 Thessalonians 5:11 July 24, 2021 I love the story told by Larry Olsen in Outdoor Survival Skills: A guy has been lost in the desert for days. He’s out of food and water. His lips are parched, his tongue swollen. His legs are bruised and bleeding from crawling, his skin is […]

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Sermon: In Everything Give Thanks?

“In Everything Give Thanks?” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 November 20, 2016 A few years ago the London Times reported about the many letters that are sent to God from around the world. Many of those letters end up at the post office in Jerusalem in the undeliverable mail department. “We have hundreds of thousands of letters […]

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He is faithful

My wife and I had been married only a few days when we moved into our first home — a 50-year-old, 600-square-foot, unfurnished apartment. We had just finished unloading all of our worldly possessions from a single 4-foot by 6-foot trailer when our new neighbors came to invite us to dinner. The initial conversation went […]

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Believing the Bible

Every Sunday morning, hundreds of thousands of Christians gather together for worship and they hear the Word of God preached. Morning and evening and times in between on each day, millions of believers open their Bibles and read what God has said. Throughout each week, followers of Christ meet with one another and exhort one […]

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You have one wish…

It’s your birthday. And positioned on the table in front of you is your celebration cake, loaded with far too much candlepower — bearing testimony to your advancing age. Your family and friends encourage you to “make a wish” before you have your lung capacity tested in the attempt to extinguish the dancing flames. What […]

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“I’m tired…”

Are you tired? Maybe this is why: I’m tired because I’m overworked. The population of this country is 237 million, and 104 million are retired. That leaves 133 million to do the work. There are 85 million in school, which leaves 48 million to do the work. Of this, there are 29 million employed by […]

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God is faithful

God is faithful.  We believe that. Or at least we say we believe that.  But, most of us still struggle to rest in God’s faithfulness each day.  Near the end of both of his letters to the Thessalonians, Paul reminded those readers of God’s faithfulness.  We do well to remember those reminders, as well as […]

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Stand firm

In junior high I wasn’t much of a fighter.  I was big, but conflict and fights were of no interest to me.  However, junior high is a time when many boys/young men are interested in fighting as a means of demonstrating superiority, strength, and “manhood.” On one occasion, while walking home from school, I was […]

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The judgment of God

The judgment of God. It is a doctrine that many use to denounce and reject God.  “How could God be both loving and vengeful and a judge?” they ask.  In fact, they often will assert that if God is judge and if God carries out wrath, then they are more god-like than God. Yet Godis […]

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When you are sinned against

You cannot keep people from sinning against you. You will be treated unjustly.  You will be lied to and gossiped about.  Ungodly accusations will be spoken against you — and said directly to you.  Others will be angry with you — sometimes because they have misunderstood you and sometimes because they understood you.  Sometimes people […]

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Keep on

The pain of parenting is not greatest the first time a child commits a significant and serious violation of trust.  It is when that child persists in his sin for years and decades. The greatest trouble for a cancer patient is not the first chemo treatment.  It is the ongoing chemo treatments, followed by radiation, […]

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Praying for others

Ask any believer about his prayer life, and he will invariable acknowledge something like, “It’s not what it should be.” And as a pastor, I am not only called on to pray often, but prayer is actually part of my calling.  You won’t find “prayer” in most pastoral job descriptions, but the apostles believed that […]

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Evangelistic attitudes

Yesterday, Ken Currie wrote this over at Desiring God: Evangelism is counter-cultural. It’s true everywhere on the planet, but perhaps it’s especially so in our increasingly post-Christian Western society. We live in a polite culture, for the most part. Talk about religion? You just don’t go there. Talk about how many tornadoes have come through, […]

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What makes you thankful?

What makes you thankful? Our lists usually include things like family, a trouble-free day, an extra (unexpected) blessing or two, and our salvation.  Since we are to be thankful for all things, those obviously are fine objects for our gratitude.  But I have often been impressed by the things that stimulated Paul’s gratitude.  And I […]

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