New Year's resolutions tend to be all about me convincing myself that "I can do it." Christianity, on the other hand, involves the mindset which believes, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." (Phil. 4:13) That is a much different approach than the typical "pull yourself up by your bootstraps" mentality. It is Christ in us that matters. That is where we receive the power, the peace, and the sustained spiritual momentum which is so critical for any worthwhile resolution to be accomplished.
Marriage is intended to be a marathon rather than a sprint. That is the way God made it. God also gave a husband and wife the privilege to raise children within the context of their home. And while raising children has a ton of challenges, it also provides some built-in safeguards which can actually help to save your marriage when your relationship encounters huge hurdles.
If you will accept the virgin birth of Christ as factual, you will be a step closer to your own personal rebirth. If you decide to reject the virgin birth of Christ, you will find it very difficult, if not impossible, to trust Jesus as your Savior. The virgin birth of the Lord is not a "secondary doctrine." It is essential to knowing God and believing in Jesus as the Messiah.
So are you ready to celebrate Christmas this year with faith in the Prince of Peace? Or will this season only involve holiday cheer and maybe a little religious sentiment, but nothing too specific? Celebrating Christmas without getting specific is like trying to open one of your presents without knowing which gift you are supposed to open.
When you came into this world, you were born in God's neighborhood. You can only get into His family, however, by being born again into it. (see John 3:1-16) Your first birth was physical. The second birth is spiritual. Many people live and die without ever being born a second time. They live and die without ever knowing God.
A separate issue is the way in which Phil described his theological beliefs when asked about "sin." Many of us would have framed it differently, and worded it differently. But the general message Phil seemed to want to get across is that the Bible does indeed present a path of righteousness which leads to heaven, and a path of deliberate sinfulness which prevents a person from "inheriting the kingdom of God."
When people talk about "good works" in the context of religion, we generally tend to assume that man does these works by his own ability and power. But that is an incorrect understanding of what the Bible means by "good" works. In the Christian life, every "good" work is done by the grace of God. Therefore, the credit goes to God. He produces many good things through His children.
Like everyone in the world, you are on a journey through life. Round and round it goes, where it stops only the Lord knows. Well, the Lord knows and you probably have a pretty good idea yourself.
So you consider yourself to be a multitasker do you? Well try this on for size. God has millions of prayers coming before Him at any given moment. How in the world does He hear each one and answer them all? It is a mind-boggling concept.
Just the mention of "self-confidence" can stir an assortment of emotions. It sounds so essential to well-being, doesn't it? Who wouldn't want more self-confidence in his or her life? Actually, quite a few people. Let me explain.
In Hollywood, good guys don't typically die at the end of the movie. In real life, good guys and bad guys all die at the end of their time on earth. Movie star Paul Walker certainly seemed to be one of the good guys.
I suppose we have all been in situations where we didn't even know what we didn't know. In other words, we were blind to our need for a change even though others around us may have recognized our plight.
If you are under the impression that a person cannot be both a Christian and a skeptic, you need to rethink your position. The truth is that most Christians are skeptics, albeit of a different kind than people typically associate with that word.
The number 1000 is a number of "completion" and "perfection" in the Bible. And what could be more perfect than paradise, right? You literally cannot imagine how utterly incredible heaven will be for all who go there. It is impossible to comprehend without being there. Simply impossible.
"If God really wanted everyone to go to heaven, He could 'force' everyone to accept His free gift of eternal life." Right? I suppose so.
The One true God is the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. "I am the Lord, and there is no other, apart from me there is no God." (Isaiah 45:5) In other words, the "Jewish God" is the only God that exists. All the other "gods" among the various religions do not actually rule the universe. In fact, they exist only in the minds of those who seek to obey them and earn their favor.
Some people are in essence only two-dimensional beings, while others experience life in all three of their God-given dimensions. If you have not yet entered into that third dimension, you don't know what you are missing, literally.
"God loves a cheerful giver." (2 Cor. 9:7) So why then does the topic of giving often leave many hearers with such little joy? You would think it would be just the opposite after everything Christ has done to redeem us. Does the problem lie primarily in the hearts of the hearers, or are there things pastors say today on this topic that block the joy of the Lord from reaching most of the people? Maybe it's a little of both.
Living water will flow out of your computer and straight into your soul. I really don't know how else to describe the fact that the worship services at the Brooklyn Tabernacle in New York are now available via webcast on their church website. You really should check it out.
So why do some Christians seem to make this methodology such a prominent feature of their work? And what consumes them to keep driving so hard on their pet doctrines? Here are 7 reasons why they do it, and remember, we have all been guilty of it to one extent or another.
It would sure be a lot easier in many respects if Christianity were to state that in the end, everybody wins. Wouldn't that make for a happier world? Just think of it. No winners and losers. Just winners. No heaven and hell. Just heaven. No cross and empty tomb. Just generic religion. You know, such as Universalism for example. Everyone wins in that system. Why can't Christianity be more like that?
Many of us in the Christian church believe that if John MacArthur were to adopt (or re-adopt) an approach to the Holy Spirit similar to that of Chuck Smith, he would be standing on firmer biblical ground than he is perceived to be standing on today as it relates to charismatics and Pentecostals. This is about more than just the gifts of the Holy Spirit. It also has a lot to do with the Person and work of the Holy Spirit in the broader Christian life.
On a scale of 1 to 10, how humble are you? I know. It's a bit of a trick question. If I give myself a good score, then am I really as humble as I think I am?
It began as a Super Bowl commercial, and it continues to be used on television to sell automobiles. A young man is offered a deal from the devil. If he will sign the contract, thereby selling his soul to Satan, he will receive a new Mercedes-Benz along with beautiful women, riches, and fame. It's a clever marketing approach. And it is a spiritual concept which is ingrained in our culture, in spite of how secular things have become in recent decades. But is this concept correct?
"The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart." (1 Samuel 16:7)