Tag Archives: love God

The Most Important Thing

1 Corinthians 9:16-23 For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel! 17 For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward: but if against my will, a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me. 18 What is my reward then? Verily that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel. 19 For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more. 20 And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law; 21 To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law. 22 To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some. 23 And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you.

Paul Kept The Main Thing The Main Thing

The Apostle Paul saw His calling as a preacher of the Gospel to be a great blessing from God. He said “Though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!”. When Jesus knocked Saul down on the Damascus Road, He set Saul (soon to be Paul) apart to preach the Gospel. God told Ananias:

Acts 9:15-16 Go thy way {to Paul, and help him}: for {Paul} is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel: 16 For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name’s sake. … Continue reading

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What Does Love Demand?

1 Corinthians 8:1-3 Now as touching things offered unto idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth. 2 And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know. 3 But if any man love God, the same is known of him.

I’m sure you’ve all been in a room with someone on a telephone. Nearly everyone carries cell phones nowadays. It’s common today to be speaking with someone, their phone rings, and they put you on hold while they talk to the person on the other side of the phone line. That’s the best way to describe this chapter. The Apostle was visited by three men from Corinth, Stephanas, Fortunatus and Achaicus (Acts 16:17). These men were some of the first Gentiles saved as the Gospel was preached in the Roman Province of Achaia (Acts 16:15). Professor Daniel Balge (Martin Luther College) notes:

“We don’t know whether the(se) three Corinthians walked to Ephesus, a journey of about 900 miles, or spent a week or more crossing the Aegean Sea by ship. … But this we know: Out of love for Jesus they served God and people well in a humble, but vital, task. They reliably carried two letters and linked a pastor to his people. Thus in his letter Paul could speak timely words to urgent problems and timeless truth (in Corinth).”… Continue reading

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How Dare You?

1 Corinthians 6:1-8 Dare any of you, having a matter against another, go to law before the unjust, and not before the saints? 2 Do ye not know that the saints shall judge the world? and if the world shall be judged by you, are ye unworthy to judge the smallest matters? 3 Know ye not that we shall judge angels? how much more things that pertain to this life? 4 If then ye have judgments of things pertaining to this life, set them to judge who are least esteemed in the church. 5 I speak to your shame. Is it so, that there is not a wise man among you? no, not one that shall be able to judge between his brethren? 6 But brother goeth to law with brother, and that before the unbelievers. 7 Now therefore there is utterly a fault among you, because ye go to law one with another. Why do ye not rather take wrong? why do ye not rather suffer yourselves to be defrauded? 8 Nay, ye do wrong, and defraud, and that your brethren.

The Believer’s PORTION Is God

Corinth was – like America today – a litigious society. People sue one another today at the drop of a hat.
There is nothing new under the sun!

But as Paul addresses the Church, he wants us to understand that our mission is to lead others to know Jesus Christ as Savior. The Church is to be the Light of Christ in a dark world. As Jesus said:

Matthew 5:14-16 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. 15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

We are supposed to allow the light of Christ’s love shine from us, out into the darkness of Pagan America. The Church has a responsibility in the place where Christ has planted us. “For we are laborers together Continue reading

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We All Need This Exercise

Jeremiah 9:24 But let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the Lord which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the Lord.

Our God Is Kind

Kindness matters. Our world is coarse and harsher today, I believe, because there is a lack of kindness among our leaders. The world is starving – and dying – for kindness.

Every creature under the glow of God’s sun is broken. The Scripture is adamant: “All have sinned, and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). We all mess up. No one has a reason to be holier than thou. No one need pretend they are perfect. We aren’t. We are all broken.

As we look at Jeremiah, not what God says of Himself. This is God speaking. Again, this is GOD SPEAKING. God tells us:… Continue reading

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Glory In The Lord

1 Corinthians 1:30-31 But of him are ye in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom, and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption: 31 That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.

Last Sunday night we began a journey through the book of 1 Corinthians. Though all of the “Church Letters” (writings like Romans, Colossians, Philippians, Thessalonians – to name just a few) are necessary for the local Church to learn, I believe 1 Corinthians is a particularly timely book for the day we live in. I came across an article submitted to the Gospel Coalition entitled “Self-Worship Is The World’s Fastest Growing Religion”. Author Thaddeus Williams noted:

“In their recent book Good Faith: Being a Christian When Society Thinks You’re Irrelevant and Extreme, David Kinnaman and Gabe Lyons document that 84 percent of Americans believe that “enjoying yourself is the highest goal of life.” … Further, 86 percent believe that to enjoy yourself you must “pursue the things you desire most.” … And 91 percent affirm this statement: “To find yourself, look within yourself.””

You can see this everywhere you look. A commercial came on television the other day for H&M, a Swedish multinational clothing company. A stylish black man comes on screen, and as he walks toward the camera telling us “You do you. The most important thing is to love yourself. I know I do.”… Continue reading

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Is That Really The Church?

Turn with me in your Bibles to 1 Corinthians chapter 1. When we come to the Book of Corinthians, we see the Apostle Paul addressing a dysfunctional Church. Paul was very concerned about Corinth, because God used Paul to establish the Church there. In Acts chapter 18 we find out that Paul first went to the Jews.

Acts 18:4-6 (ESV) {Paul} reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath, and tried to persuade Jews and Greeks. 5 When Silas and Timothy arrived from Macedonia, Paul was occupied with the word, testifying to the Jews that the Christ was Jesus. 6 And when they opposed and reviled him, he shook out his garments and said to them, “Your blood be on your own heads! I am innocent. From now on I will go to the Gentiles.”

Corinth was a very hard ministry for Paul. God actually came to Paul in a vision one night, saying …

Acts 18:9-11 (ESV) … “Do not be afraid, but go on speaking and do not be silent, 10 for I am with you, and no one will attack you to harm you, for I have many in this city who are my people.” 11 And he stayed a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.

At one point Paul was taken before the tribunal or or court but the proconsul (think Prosecutor) Gallio refused to prosecute Paul. One convert to our faith that Paul had in Corinth was “Sosthenes, the ruler of the synagogue” (Acts 18:17), who was beaten for standing up for Christ and for Paul. I believe Sosthenes went on to be an elder or a pastor in the Church at Corinth. In verse 1 we see talking about this same Sosthenes…. Continue reading

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The Glory Of His Grace

When Paul wrote the Book of Ephesians (under the leading of God the Holy Spirit – 2 Peter 1:21), he was in his first Roman imprisonment. Paul was under house arrest, living in his home, but guarded by Roman soldiers. Acts 28:16 tells us that “Paul was {allowed} to dwell by himself with a soldier that {guarded} him.” He was not chained in a prison cell until his second imprisonment, and could still receive visitors. Acts 28:30-31 tells us that “Paul dwelt two whole years in his own hired house, and received all that came in unto him, preaching the kingdom of God, and teaching those things which concern the Lord Jesus Christ, with all confidence, no man forbidding him.” Paul’s imprisonment is a picture of the great Grace of our God. Though we may go into valleys, our Lord will be with us. If we are in a valley, our Lord will adjust the situation so that we can minister to others for Him. Though Paul’s home is invaded by the enemy, Paul is joyous. Why? We read:

Ephesians 1:2-6 Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father… Continue reading

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A Mighty Mite!

As the disciples left the Temple, a beautiful structure that was built by King Herod, they remarked on it’s fine construction. Jesus told them “there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down”. The Roman Empire would lay siege to the city of Jerusalem in April 14, 70 A.D., three days prior to the beginning of Passover. The Temple would be destroyed by Rome in August, 70 A.D.

I often wonder what happened to that poor widow that Jesus commended. Though her destiny is not revealed in Scripture, I know that my God is faithful. As a Good Shepherd, Jesus tended to her needs, and she rests in glory with Him in eternity.

I believe that God is separating the wheat from the tares in America today. If we deny Jesus, Jesus will deny us (2 Timothy 2:12). If we sow corruption, we reap corruption (Galatians 6:7-8). Those who are Christ’s sheep will, as Hebrews 3:12-14 notes, “share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original confidence firm to the end”. The Bible is very clear. Eternal life is certain for those with overcoming faith (Revelation 2:7, 11, 17, 26, 3:5, 12, 21). Genuine faith in Christ causes a person to fall in love with God. We love God with our ALL. And God indwells us, gently guiding the believer through the valleys of this life. Genuine faith is not here today, and gone tomorrow. The Christian delights to do God’s will. The Christian loves to worship God with other saints. Do you love Jesus? Do you know Him? Oh, I pray that you do! Run into Jesus’ arms this very day. Do not delay! Trust Him, and commit to loving Him with your all. May God the Holy Spirit convict you this very day!.. Continue reading

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Why Sunday School?

The early Church, started on the Day of Pentecost by God and His people, grew and excelled. This is amazing, because the Church itself owned no real estate, had no buildings, and usually met on “Solomon’s Porch” in the Temple. The Church grew even though it was attacked as a cult by the Pharisees, priests, and Ruling Elders of Israel (the Sanhedrin). It was also considered seditious by Roman authorities, for Christians would not acknowledge “Caesar is Lord” as all good Romans would do.

Yet the Church grew. It excelled. Why would it grow in such a toxic environment? The Church did three things:

The Church Obeyed Jesus… Continue reading

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Rest In The Heart Of Jesus

Matthew 11:28-30 Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. {29} Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. {30} For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.


Though God has given us four Gospels – four points of view of Christ’s earthly ministry – rarely one Gospel will report something that the others do not mention. The words we read today are unique to the Gospels. Though you will find the Lord’s Prayer in both Matthew 6:9-13 & Luke 11:2-4, and the Great Commission in Matthew 28:16-20 & Mark 16:14-18 (as well as Acts 1:8), these words of our Lord are only found in this text.

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