Church Blog (Page 16)

Church Blog (Page 16)

God is Not Interested in Our Excuses

When I played freshman basketball on my high school team, Coach Wade was never interested in hearing excuses. In fact, he had a zero tolerance for the words “I can’t.” I used those words one time and paid dearly. Since then, I’ve had much the same attitude toward “I can’t.” When I was with the Seagoville congregation to speak at the Fishers of Men graduation banquet, I was also privileged to sit in on their final class session. During this…

Genesis: A Book of Great Beginnings

Genesis– from the Hebrew word meaning ORIGIN or SOURCE Authorship: MOSES uniquely qualified Date of writing: 1450-1400 BC during wilderness wanderings ( Coffman’s Commentaries: Genesis, p. 18) 1 Kings 6:1. The book covers approximately 1/3 of human history- 2000 yrs A book of many beginnings. Genesis records the beginning of the UNIVERSE / MATTER – Genesis 1 Ex nihilo – out of NOTHING Hebrews 11:3 PHYSICAL LIFE – PLANTS – Day 3 – Genesis 1:11-12 ANIMALS – BIRDS & SEA…

A Mule Load of Dirt

In 2 Kings 5 is found the account of Naaman the Syrian. Most of us are familiar with the story of his leprosy and his journey to the prophet of God to be healed. We know of his initial anger and refusal t accept God’s conditions of cleansing, and how his servants pled with him to do this ‘small thing’ and “Wash, and be clean.” We know of his obedience and his desire to repay the man of God. We…

A Capella Music: Killing It or Keeping It?

THE GREATEST THREAT TO A CAPPELLA WORSHIP IS NOT INSTRUMENTAL MUSIC; IT IS LOUSY WORSHIP. Some church leaders believe they can keep a cappella alive by preaching against instrumental music semi-annually, but the most effective method is to worship the Lord with consistent, spirit-filled praise. When it comes to the perseverance of a cappella Christian hymnody, in some circles, it has become its own worst enemy. Ensuring there is “nothing wrong” with our worship will not make it worth preserving.…

I Almost Thanked the Devil

I have long struggled with maintaining a balance between the time I spend in personal study, education and edification versus that watching sports or sports-related programming (Pardon the Interruption, etc). I realize everyone needs some outlet to get a break from the stresses of life, but keeping a proper balance was difficult. In recent years, I quit watching programming that openly denigrates and offends my faith. This includes watching and reading national news media and some television series. I mean,…

Muzzling the Wolves

In Acts 20:29-31, Paul gave the following warning to the Ephesian elders, “For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them.” One of the primary functions of a shepherd is to protect the flock from wolves. Too many elderships are taking a lax attitude toward the use of false teachers. Many do not properly…

The Church: God’s Spiritual HMO-Not a Man-made PPO

A topic of great discussion in the United States is that of health care. Much of the discussion concerns Health Maintenance Organizations, or HMO’s, and Preferred Provider Organizations, or PPO’s. If I understand correctly, (and this may be a gross over-simplification), an HMO exercises near absolute control of a client’s medical care. In other words, the client has little room for negotiation and little personal control with reference to health care providers and services that may be performed. On the…

What’s Wrong With This Picture?

Imagine several groups of sheep gathered around their shepherd, pulling at him from all directions. “This way is best!” cries one group, while another group, pulling in the opposite direction, insistently cries out, “No, this way is better!” Or picture this–a group of shepherds pulling, pushing, pleading, and/or dragging a flock of ungrateful, grumbling sheep. In the real relationship between shepherds and sheep, events like those described above never happen. Yet, in the church, these images are all too commonplace.…

Debunking Liberal Elitism

The epistle of First John is written to Christians as a message of encouragement and reassurance. A group known as the gnostics (“the knowers”) was troubling the Christians of that day. These “knowers” claimed to have special knowledge that the ordinary Christian could not possess unless they imparted it to them. This was a source of great concern for John’s audience. This is why John’s message in chapter 1 is filled with words to reassure their faith: “That . .…

Can Elders be Paid from the Church Treasury?

The Bible teaches that each congregation of the Lord’s church is autonomous and is to be overseen by elders (Titus 1:5; Acts 14:23; Phil 1:1), men who meet the qualifications of 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1.  The elders are elsewhere called “overseers” (Acts 20:28), “bishops” (1 Timothy 3:1-2), “pastors” (Eph 4:11).  The word translated “pastors” in Ephesians 4:11 is the Greek poimaine (Strong’s #4166).  It appears 18 times in the New Testament and is translated “shepherd” 17 of the…