the ending of kings

My good buddy, Josh Honeycutt, has another great post here about the ending to the two books of Kings. You will like it.

Here is an excerpt:

“I don’t believe in randomness in the weaving together of the grand biblical narrative so when something seems out of place that to me is a tell-tell sign that it is important and should be emphasized.”

my reaction to the announcement of Bin Laden’s death

As of Sunday evening, late, the whole world knew that the U.S. was announcing that Osama Bin Laden had been killed.

Just about as quickly as that news came, it appeared to me that most people were ready to announce via facebook, twitter, text, etc. their own opinions and comments about this historical moment. As I trust that you have already seen, some people celebrated, some were saddened, some doubt that it is true, some see it as a political move, some see it as a work of God, some it as saddening to God, some see it as good for the whole world, and so on and so on. There has been so much talk about Bin Laden’s death.

But as I have been following this huge news release, I found myself thinking about James 1:19 “be quick to hear, slow to speak”. Before we immediately get to commenting on it, Lets listen for a while to those who know and understand more about the whole situation.

This is a huge deal for America. This is a huge deal for Al Qaeda. And I think it is a pretty big deal for everyone in between.  And I realize that some people need to be speaking about it or else I/we would not have a way of being informed about it. But for many of us, I think the best option would be to take it all in, think well about it, pray about it, and then try to draw some good understanding and conclusions about it.

what a statement about Gospel/Christian ministry

Perhaps there has never been a greater and more clearer statement about the Gospel/Christian ministry than what Paul writes to the Corinthians in 2 Corinthians 4:5:

“For what we proclaim is not ourselves”

Now that is absolutely a loaded statement. Think about that for a while.

Again, there may have never been a better statement ever about the Gospel ministry.

leading up to discipleship

This past Sunday I preached on Luke 5:1-11. You can listen to the sermon here.

As we are walking through the Gospel of Luke, Sunday after Sunday, we are really beginning to see what Luke meant in 1:1-4 when he tells Theophilus that he is writing this to him as “an orderly account” of the life and ministry of Jesus.

So in chapter 5 when we read (Luke writing to Theophilus) that Jesus is calling his first disciples, there is such a nice context. And there is such great detail to help us understand what discipleship looks like and where discipleship comes from.

Here are my 6 observations from Sunday’s sermon from Luke 5:1-11:

  1. “Pressing in… to hear the Word of God”   vv.1-3
  2. Obedience   vv.4-5
  3. Reward   vv.6-7
  4. Humility & Recognition  vv.8-9
  5. Fishers of men   v.10 (also check out Jeremiah 16:16)
  6. Followers   v.11

Followers of Jesus are not following Jesus blindly. Not at all. Followers of Jesus (disciples) are following Jesus because they have come to know him and understand him as the most awesome and satisfying there is. They see His worth, and so they follow Him.

in case you have forgotten, or just haven’t heard it in a while

Great is Thy faithfulness, O God my Father, There is no shadow of turning with Thee; Thou changest not, Thy compassions, they fail not; As Thou hast been Thou forever wilt be.

Summer and winter, and springtime and harvest, Sun, moon, and stars in their courses above. Join with all nature in manifold witness To Thy great faithfulness, mercy and love.

Pardon for sin and a peace that endureth, Thy own dear presence to cheer and to guide; Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow, Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!

Great is Thy faithfulness! Great is Thy faithfulness! Morning by morning  new mercies I see; All I have needed Thy hand hath provided, Great is Thy faithfulness! Lord unto me!”

Travis Jones – pictures and words

My great friend Travis Jones.

You may or may not know Travis. You may remember him as “Larry Jones.” Either way, he is pursuing a career in Sociology and Public Speaking. This video is an attempt to be invited to an awesome conference called TED Full Spectrum. Please check out the video. Link to it on your facebook. And encourage other people to view Travis’ YouTube video.
Support Travis!

Lets listen more to the ladies

Something interesting came out in my Easter sermon on Sunday.

Men should listen more to what women say!

Let me show you where we got this from God’s Word.

I was preaching on “the road to Emmaus” from Luke 24:13-35. And in this passage the two disciples who are making the 7 mile walk to Emmaus are ironically telling Jesus about what has happened in the last 3 days concerning Jesus. In verse 22 they say “some women of our company amazed us.” Well then verse 23 goes on to say that the women amazed them by saying that they had been to the tomb and found empty and some angels had told them that Jesus was no longer dead, but alive. Well here is where it gets humorous. The very next statement, which is verse 24,  says “Some of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said.

What is really great about this passage is that all four gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) tell us that women were the first ones at the tomb on that first Easter Sunday morning. Then the ladies go to tell the other disciples. Mark writes in 16:11 & 13 that “they would not believe it” and “they did not believe it”. So as you know, they go running there to see for themselves.

John writes that it was specifically Peter and John running to the tomb with John being faster (What detail to the story! Also note that John is the one writing and just happens to mention that he runs faster than Peter. So awesome!)

All this to say that when Luke writes in 24:24 that they “found it just as the women had said” we are seeing that they all should have believed the women.

There is great truth in this. Most often, women DO know what they are talking about.

Lets all listen more to the ladies!

new members packets

CHURCH, DON’T FORGET!

I want to remind everyone that the New Member’s Packets are ready. Beginning next Wednesday evening May 4th, I will lead the whole church (not just new members) through this helpful packet on “what it means to be a member of our church”. This will be done in 5 sessions. Five straight Wednesday evenings.

After everyone in the church has been led through the packet, we will then periodically offer “New Members Classes” to those people who are seeking to become members of our church.

This has been a long time coming, but it is finally here and I am really looking forward to it. Please make plans to be a part of it.