Thirsty?

The Feast of the Tabernacles was instituted by God in Leviticus 23. Also known as the Feast of the Booths, it was characterized by the construction of tent-like booths that represented the temporary housing used by Israel during its wilderness wanderings. It was God’s way of instructing Israel to rely on him and not themselves.

Near the end of Jesus’ life, he traveled to Jerusalem during this feast and went into the temple to teach (John 7:14). Imagine sitting and listening to the Lord Jesus teach the truths of God’s word and the magnificent lessons he brought! Continue reading “Thirsty?”

Is your name written there?

Our family had a good friend who was skilled in sleight-of-hand magic. Our children were about 10 or 15 years old at the time and were mesmerized by the illusions he could perform. They were particularly amazed by a finger guillotine he used. He asked each of them to place their fingers in the guillotine, and then it would seem he would close it over their fingers without ever hurting them. They couldn’t figure that out. Continue reading “Is your name written there?”

Do you know Jesus?

Have you ever heard of Jesus Christ? Some might call that a foolish question. It would be difficult if not impossible to have lived in the world for the last 2,000 years and not know that name.

Here’s another question: how well do you know Jesus Christ? Some people would immediately dismiss the question as absurd. Many insist they do. As to how well they know him is another question. Continue reading “Do you know Jesus?”

It’s no trick; the Bible reads minds

There are some good magicians who claim to read minds. They use tricks they have learned to appear to have the power. Basically, it is just clever deception.

The Bible is the word of God because it tells us what people are thinking. It tells us what kings are thinking when they would rather not have anyone know. There is evidence of this in all three of the synoptic gospels, Matthew, Mark, and Luke. Continue reading “It’s no trick; the Bible reads minds”

What is the meat of your life?

Sometimes we humans forget that Jesus is God the Son, the second person of the Godhead and has been present throughout human history. He was present when Israel was tested in the wilderness and when they failed the test.

In Exodus 16, Israel became hungry and rebelled against God not only by complaining of hunger but also by expressing their regret that they could not immediately return to Egypt. Israel would continue to complain about food and water and continue to rebel. It is simply amazing God kept leading them and saving their lives after all of their rebellion. Continue reading “What is the meat of your life?”

Salt and light

In the “Sermon on the Mount,” Jesus spoke about the two things that make life on earth worthwhile: salt and light. These two things are usually taken for granted, but we could not live without them.

Salt is necessary for life. Consider the beating heart. The heart beats because of a chemical exchange of sodium (salt) and potassium (another salt). Were it not for these salts, we die. When the two are out of balance, the heart doesn’t function well. Having too much salt means the body retains water and that can result in problems. Having too little potassium can also cause problems and can send a person to the hospital. Continue reading “Salt and light”

Never alone

The artists’ conceptions of God are interesting. The Almighty usually appears as a very old, very kind man. To them he is human. That concept, however, does not fit the facts. 

Jesus said that God is spirit (John 4:24). The artists may say, “But the Bible says God has eyes and ears.” Yes. The Bible does indeed refer to God’s eyes and ears. God does see and hear but not like human beings. King David spoke of God hearing him (Psalm 40:1-2). And, yes, God does hear us. Continue reading “Never alone”

Rediscover the Bible

John was in prison. Jesus’ cousin was jailed by Herod, who did not appreciate what John said about his illicit marriage to Herodias. This particular Herod was known as Antipas. He reigned over Galilee and Perea.

John understood that his work was coming to an end and asked Jesus through a messenger if he was the one whose coming was foretold. Some say that during this challenging trial, John’s faith weakened. None of us are perfect, not even John. Continue reading “Rediscover the Bible”

Christ’s love from all sides

There are many things that can “fill us up.” Fried chicken can fill one up. Marital love can fill one up. Our vocation in life can often come pretty close to filling us up in several ways.

The apostle Paul had a wish for the members of the church at Ephesus. He wrote, “That you may be filled up to all the fullness of God” (Ephesians 3:19b). One might achieve that by learning the breadth, length, height, and depth of the love of Christ, which, he said, surpasses knowledge. Continue reading “Christ’s love from all sides”

The true formula for happiness

Good parents in every country of the world have one thing in common: they want their children to become happy and productive people. To send the children on their way, parents teach their idea of success life. Sometimes that idea does not bear the best fruit.

God wants his children to learn how they can achieve true happiness, and his only son, Jesus, communicated his wishes in the “Sermon on the Mount” in Matthew chapters 5-7. Jesus’ sermon is more than platitudes. It is not a speech designed to please people. Instead, it is the ultimate parent’s love, and intelligence poured into a message designed to teach people the righteousness that exceeds. Continue reading “The true formula for happiness”