Impossible for mere humans

We must surrender our ideas about how God saves.

He replied, “What is impossible for mere humans is possible for God.” Luke 18.27 NET.

Man has his own idea about whom God will save. Jesus’ statement follows the story of the rich young ruler who rejected the call to follow the Lord. Jesus commented that it’s hard for the rich to be saved. People of that day thought that the rich, since they were blessed by God, would be first in line. Not so! Continue reading “Impossible for mere humans”

You were made in a special way

Family Bible Readings: Psalm 139.13-16.

Note: The following material was written for family reading. The father should lead the devotional moment. Cell phones and electronic devices should be turned off. Let nothing disturb this moment. Let parents give priority to teaching within the home. It is recommended to use a version such as Contemporary English Version, Easy English Bible, or, better yet, the International English Bible. Continue reading “You were made in a special way”

Pay attention to detail

The serious student of the Word of God can never deal loosely with the text.

An artist drawing biblical scenes chose to depict Jesus’ baptism. Like many artists, he drew the Holy Spirit as a dove coming from heaven while Jesus was still in the water ─ before his baptism. He had apparently failed to read all three of the Gospel accounts of the event. Continue reading “Pay attention to detail”

Here’s the deal

Zechariah 1.3: God declares a timeless principle.

“Therefore say to the people: The Lord of Heaven’s Armies says, ‘Turn to me,’ says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, ‘and I will turn to you,’ says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.” Zechariah 1.3 NET.

Here is the great principle: God is waiting for us to turn to him. If we want him to deal differently with us, we must act differently toward him, by repenting. Continue reading “Here’s the deal”

Prayer: Think on the good

A short prayer about thinking and doing good, with an accompanying Bible verse.

From you, O God, come all good things.
So grant that we, your grateful church,
May by your power think on the good,
And do as well in loving acts,
In Jesus’ holy name, who lives
And reigns with you in Heaven above,
United with the Holy Spirit,
One God, both now and ever more.

Amen! Continue reading “Prayer: Think on the good”

More restoration needed

The editor offers four areas where restoration is still needed.

The Forthright columnists who were able to do so were invited to write this month about “Continuing Restoration.” The theme came to mind some weeks ago when Brett Christensen from Melbourne, Australia, reviewed the book Church Reset. A summary of what we mean by restoration can be found here.

Gratitude first requires us to acknowledge those who came before. Through an arduous process that encountered much opposition, brethren of previous years threw away the shackles of denominational doctrines and sectarian creeds to read the Bible again with open eyes. Continue reading “More restoration needed”

Is 2023 the only Year of the Mission?

God sends, Jesus calls, here’s how to respond.

When I say that the year 2023 is for me the Year of the Mission, what do I mean? It’s not that other years weren’t mission years, nor that future years won’t be. It is a way of organizing my plans and my teaching. Something I do each year, using a theme for emphasis. Continue reading “Is 2023 the only Year of the Mission?”

3 important principles for starting again

These principles put into practice what Jesus did.

When inventor Thomas Edison watched his laboratory burn to the ground, he supposedly commented that he was happy to be able to begin again from scratch. That attitude has reminded me over the past several days that God gives us many opportunities in the midst of trials, disasters, and suffering. Continue reading “3 important principles for starting again”