'Christ in You...'
by Dale Krebbs
Sometimes, within families of several children, a parent, no matter how they try, cannot manifest a perceived impartiality. Children internalize this is bias (real or imagined), and often it as internalized as a lack of love, or as not being loved as much as other children. This can lead to an array of problems. There can be scars that last a lifetime. As any parent knows, this is almost always not true. However, can family love actually be qualitative and quantitative? Is love within God’s family this way? Is God’s love this way? To understand, we must turn to God and ( Click for more )
How many times have we heard someone exclaim, "Oh! I need a rest..."! In an effort to claim tongue-in-cheek sympathy, someone may comment, "well, there IS no rest for the wicked (quoting a passage from scripture), and the righteous don’t need it!". It may or may not be a joke, depending on the people and circumstances. It seems so often, no matter where we go or who we encounter, we hear "I’m just - tired", or as I heard recently, "I need a vacation!". Vacations are seldom long enough. It is said that it requires at least two weeks ( Click for more )
A small group of young men in a country far removed from the Western world had gathered to visit and discuss events of the day in their lives. They were sitting in a circle, so that one might not seem of more importance than another, they said. Looking on was an American who was struck by the scene as the meeting progressed, and more so as he realized how rare to see and hear such a spectacle occurring before his eyes. As the meeting progressed in a joyful tone, peppered with gentle humor and chuckling, he began to realize the secret they shared that seemed to enable such joy and ( Click for more )
Recently we discussed the difficulties and dangers involved in practicing a spiritual subjectivism, and the necessity of accepting the Bible as “God breathed” along with emphasis on the role of the Holy Spirit, realizing they are both one in Jesus Christ. In accepting the Bible as God-breathed, a question often arises about the Bible itself. Referring to the Bible as “self” seems permissible since it is indwelt by Christ Himself (John 6:31). There is a corresponding, although different, danger in handling the written Word of God as well. A similar subjectivism ( Click for more )
“Then Pilate said, ‘So you are a king!’ Jesus replied, ‘You say that I am a king. For this reason I was born, and for this reason I came into the world - to testify to the truth. Everyone who belongs to the truth listens to my voice.' Pilate asked, ‘What is truth?” - John 18:37 To the world, truth is either scientific, or something is true only if the world accepts the evidence as true. This is the reason many do not accept the Bible as a basis for truth. Perhaps Jesus knew that Pilate was the consummate "postmodernist" of his time. ( Click for more )
For a long time a condition has been developing in the Christian community that can undermine faith and spiritual growth, and mislead many of those beginning to come to trust in Jesus Christ unto eternal life. It can seem so legitimate to some, but at its root it is Satanic in its effect. This has occurred slowly, hence the progressive acceptance of it as being a valid and proper approach to living a Christian life, and being a Christian. For lack of a more sophisticated description, I will call it Cafeteria Christianity (or Smorgasbord Christianity). The whole spectrum of it, since ( Click for more )
Often in the task of living in today’s world, many struggle with what they feel is unanswered prayer - prayer for themselves, for others, for activities, etc., that may be desperately important. We all want the answer to unanswered prayer. At times - sometimes - it has helped some to recall the refrain of a melody that affirms that “one of God’s greatest gifts is unanswered prayer”. But for others, the “sound of silence” seems the only response from God that can be heard, and it seems impossible to see it as a gift from God - at least at first. ( Click for more )
Last week we looked briefly at the conditions that God’s Word reveals will be extant in the church in general in the last days. These things were occurring then as a type - with the antitype to be occurring and progressively intensifying, at the very end time of the "end times" (1 Thessalonians 5:1-2). There is a time for all things "under the sun" (Ecclesiastes 3:1). All things include God’s "things", that will bring to a close the times and seasons for bringing sin to final judgment, and His children into His eternal family.
In ( Click for more )
There is a direct relationship between conditions during the end times, and the phenomenon of spiritual darkness. Whether one believes we are living in the "end time" or not (we are certainly closer to it today than yesterday), 2 Peter 2 is very relevant to our world and our lives today. In reality we have been in the "end time" ever since Jesus died on the cross. It seems timely then, for a close look at 2 Peter 2.
Peter’s first epistle (see Archives "Works Of Grace") was written to explain to God’s people the process of ( Click for more )
There are several "lonely" portions of God’s Word. They are lonely because they are seldom visited. Some are lonely because of their seeming boring repetitiousness, lengthy genealogies, or they seem so self-explanatory. Others are not visited because they make one feel guilty, or just nervous or uncomfortable. Being comfortable with our Christian label has been sold as part of the package of being converted, being baptized, joining the church, etc. We subconsciously stay away these lonely ones. Something inside us is saying they could apply to us. Some scriptures ( Click for more )
In the movie entitled "Patton", General Patton is portrayed as excitedly saying to himself concerning a successful tank battle that he had read the opposing German Field Marshal’s book! He thus attributed his success to having read the Field Marshal’s tactics, and therefore knew what he would do in advance. This would provide a great advantage to say the least! Other leaders have written of their plans in advance - some notorious, some almost unknown. Our Creator God has also written His plan for His creation in His Book. He has also written His tactics and ( Click for more )
Is it Law, or is it Grace - Is it "grace only" or is it "law only"? Must it be one or the other, or - is it both?
Law - God's law or laws, most would agree, show us God's very high standard. His law "leads us to Christ" (Galatians 3:24), who IS the Standard. Jesus is the purpose of the law since He came to fulfill it (Matthew 5:16-22). Therefore we must come to Christ in order to keep the law - because only He can "fulfill" it in us! By thinking that the law of God is no longer needed or that it has been "done away" with, there ( Click for more )
"So Paul, standing in the midst of the Areopagus, said: "Men of Athens, I perceive that in every way you are very religious. For as I passed along and observed the objects of your worship, I found also an altar with this inscription, ‘To the unknown god.’ What therefore you worship as unknown, this I proclaim to you."- Acts 17:22-23
Does this passage from God’s Word seem familiar?
Many have at least an arms length familiarity with the incident, or an academic acquaintance with certain particulars of the whys and wherefores concerning ( Click for more )
There is a much different world coming - one developing out of this present world that we all know - a world like no one has ever seen before, or will ever be seen again. One that is not expected, except perhaps by those who are striving to bring it about. However they may see what they do not expect to see or envision. It will be ruled by a one world government; one religion; one world economy. Government, Economics, and Religion. These three aspects of the "new world order", are even now slowly becoming a reality, and beginning to position themselves, eventually to fall ( Click for more )
There is no subject in the annals of Christian history that has caused more concern, questions, and mental anguish than the words "unpardonable sin". So much so, that it is almost completely avoided in public venues and private conversations. They may even cause a twinge of momentary fear in the heart of those who know little or believe little about God, Jesus, or Christianity. Recently we discussed a hidden fear in the being of all of humanity (see Archives ,"The World Does Not Know"). But the fear of committing or of having committed the unpardonable sin also ( Click for more )
There have been many discussions about love. Even to make the statement is an understatement. But discussions and arguments, strife and accusations, charges and countercharges about conditional and unconditional love continues relentlessly. Is there such a state or condition as conditional and/or unconditional love? Should love be "unconditional"? Is there ever a time for "conditional love"?
Can love be divided?
In order to reduce the size of a tree that could have so many branches and twigs, we will focus on the love of God as He relates to people, and ( Click for more )
There are many definitions and theories regarding self. Even in the dictionary. Many word doublets have been evolved in an attempt to describe the self. It appears that there are so many that the whole concept of self becomes hazy and almost indefinable, and yet most everyone knows what or who is being referred to when they hear the word. So it would appear that there are many "selfs" (not a real word), in the sense of what we are in thought, word, action, feelings, and attitude. Some of these are: myself, yourself, selfish (and selfishness), self centered, self confidence, ( Click for more )
Last week we discussed the tension between fear and love as it is worked out by Christ in our lives. The Apostle Paul makes a statement that is so astounding in its simplicity and yet so profound as to take our breath away in its ramifications.
It is all too often overlooked in attempting to fathom why the world thinks the way it thinks, and does what it does. It is easy to make sweeping generalities, but this one is worthy of all acceptances. It disassembles us, and reassembles us, and disassembles us again. In some ways, it truly is the reason for being what and who we are naturally ( Click for more )
Are these two mutually exclusive? Is there a conflict between Love and Fear? Some feel that there is, and often refer to 1 John 4:18 in support: "There is no fear in love; but perfect love casts out fear: because fear hath torment. He that fears is not made perfect in love". This would seem to be evidence enough. Fear is a negative emotion, counterproductive, and not now useful in God’s scheme of things. There is no place for fear anymore in God’s plan. Case closed...
However, what are we going to do - with all those other scriptures - about fear, ( Click for more )
When growing up in a rural setting, a popular cliché’ was often heard when someone wanted to do something which would be considered inappropriate by others. It was an excuse to do what one wanted to do when one wanted to do it. It was an expression both humorous and - temporarily at least - true. So many times we heard, " well...distance is decency, so go ahead!"
Not only is distance decency, it just makes us feel safe! If enough distance can be put between us and something or someone, all seems well. If we feel threatened in some way, the first impulse ( Click for more )
Are you, or have you ever been, hurt? Are you hurting now, in an ongoing and progressive sense? Are you in some way, in "a world of hurt"? If so, is it of such intensity that you would call it suffering? Is the suffering of such intensity that it could be called agony...? It is probably a safe thing to say that everyone falls into at least one of the categories above - past or present. If not, then probably we all will be - someday. It seems that the poet and the musician have always been correct when they penned that the whole world is hurting. The world is more than hurting ( Click for more )
What is money...more importantly, what is it made for?
It is a creation of man. It has become universally used by man replacing the barter system which was cumbersome and became inefficient. Money has been defined as a "medium of exchange", a type of go-between, a middle mechanism to facilitate the transfer of something from one location to another, i.e. goods and services of the world, without having to actually move such goods and services before equivalent goods and services can be taken possession of. Such transfers are on the minds of many right now. Such concerns ( Click for more )
"Waisted time, waisted years; Waisted life, waisted tears"
These words were scribbled on a small piece of paper, the morning after the greatest tragedy in my life. At that moment, I thought life was over. There was not much to salvage from the past, and not much hope for the future. It was utter despair. As the agonizing days and more agonizing nights slowly went by, the world did not seem to improve much. Many nights I felt I would certainly die before morning. As it is written, Oh that it were morning; and then, Oh that it were evening!
Experiencing that change ( Click for more )
There is a misconception, or perhaps a kind of misassumption, that has come to be an albatross clinging to efforts to preach the gospel and to evangelize in our world. The misconception has increased in proportion to the degree that churches have become more organized and increased in numbers. It accounts for much of the explosion in numbers in some church entities. It has always been there to a greater or lesser degree, but today it has become a critical issue. It is not self evident. It is one of those things called a "sleeper" However, it is time to ( Click for more )
"If then you have been raised with Christ [to a new life, thus sharing His resurrection from the dead], aim at and seek the [rich, eternal treasures] that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God And set your minds and keep them set on what is above (the higher things), not on the things that are on the earth." - Colossians 3:1-2
Have you ever wondered just where you are with Jesus Christ? I mean REALLY- where are you in His sight? Can you really know? Is it possible for you to know all the time, and - to always know? Some of us could possibly say, ( Click for more )
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