A Commitment Whose Benefits Far Outweigh its Cost (Mark 1:16-20)

fishers of people

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Mark 1:16-20

Commitment is waning in our society. Sociologist Peter Berger once said, “The modern mind is distinguished by this: to the modern person, our needs and our own fulfillment is more real to us than any other obligation.” Berger is saying that if it comes to choosing between fulfilling our own desires or fulfilling our commitment to another – say a child, parent, boss, our membership in a group, etc. – we have a greater tendency to choose fulfilling our own desires than we did several decades ago. Many sociologists say this trend has only gotten worse since Berger said this. Continue reading

The Amnesia of Sin and The Plague of Pride (Psalm 10:4)

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Submitted by Andy McIlvain.

Psalm 10:4

Sin gives us amnesia; it makes us forget.

Our amnesia has its roots in our sin nature and in our world. We forget how faithful God has been in the past. Even now his steadfast love, grace and mercy is at work. We know this, yet… Continue reading

The Mission of God’s Kingdom (Mark 1:14-15)

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Mark 1:14-15

The Gospel of Mark, and Jesus’ mission on earth for that matter, can be summarized in one verse: “‘The time has come,’ Jesus said. ‘The Kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!’” (Mark 1:15) Continue reading

Help Reading the Bible – Part 2 (Translations and Resources)

 

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Submitted by Andy McIlvain. 

God wrote a book-The Bible. As Christians we should strive to live and breathe the Bible.
The Bible is inspired (God-Breathed), meaning God divinely influenced the human authors of the Scriptures to write the very Word of God. In the context of the Scriptures “inspiration” simply means “God-breathed,” making the Bible unique among all other books. The human authors, though inspired by God, had different writing styles with their own personalities, worldviews, and cultural influences. Yet, because the words of Scripture were received from an all-powerful, all-knowing, perfect God, the Bible in its original form is inerrant and authoritative. Continue reading

The Big Event Before the Big Event (Mark 1:1-8)

The Gospel of Mark
Mark 1:1-8

Imagine a signpost in a field nestling a tributary of the Pine Creek. On the sign is written the words, “The Big Event Before the Big Event!” No one knows what the big event is, let alone what the big event before the big event necessarily means. Nevertheless, everyone goes out to check it out. Cars line up and jam up traffic. Energy can be felt in the air, as well as excitement, intrigue, and mystery. Everyone goes out. Everyone wants to know what is going on and what will come next. Continue reading

The Offering the Satisfies Debt (Leviticus 5:14-6:7)

The Lord Jesus in LeviticusLeviticus 5:14-6:7

I remember forgetting to return a library book when I was fourteen. I checked it out. I knew I needed to return it. Nevertheless, there it laid for weeks or months beyond its due date. I was tempted to not return it. However, the better part of me compelled myself to walk through the Library doors and face the music. The librarian took the book and in an unharmonious voice told me what I already knew, “This book is late.” The fine was twenty or so dollars, a small fortune for a fourteen-year-old, especially in the nineties. Continue reading

The Sacrifice that Cleanses (Leviticus 4:1-5:13)

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Leviticus 4:1-5:13

God understands sin more broadly than we. We might think of sin as breaking one of the Big Ten. However, for God, sin is insidious. It engenders every action, thought, and attitude that is contrary to God’s flourishing design for this world. Sometimes we sin without even knowing it. Continue reading

Help in Reading the Bible – Part 1 (2 Timothy 3:16-17)

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Submitted by Andy McIlvain.

2 Timothy 3:16-17

Do you read your Bible? I mean really sit down without distractions and read it? We call it “The Holy Bible” because it is God’s Word set apart from all other books. Continue reading

The Mission of Jesus Begins (Mark 1:9-13)

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Submitted by Craig Devenport. 

Mark 1:9-13

The first chapter of Mark has it all. Angels, God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and even Satan are all in the same place at the same time, during the baptism of Jesus by John the Baptist and Jesus’ temptation by Satan. Continue reading