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“Then the governor’s soldiers took Jesus into the Praetorium and gathered the whole company or soldiers around Him. They stripped Him and put a scarlet robe on Him and then twisted together a crown of thorns and set it on His head. They put a staff in His right hand and knelt in front of Him and mocked him. ‘Hail, king of the Jews!’ they said. They spat on Him, and took the staff and struck Him on the head again and again. After they had mocked Him, they took off the robe and put His own clothes on Him. Then they led Him away to crucify Him” (Matthew 27:27-31).

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls” (Matthew 11:28-29).

During this month, we are going to remember again the events of Matthew 27 and 28. However, I would like to draw your attention to the soldiers’ attempt to humiliate Jesus. At different times in our lives, we have all b…
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April Ministry Letter: Anxiety

Dear Friends,

Early in my Christian life, I had several periods of deep and sometimes prolonged anxiety. In each case, someone else pointed me to God and His faithfulness and how to trust Him. In every case, my anxiety ended, and God answered my need.

God cares for us. The more we think about God the way God thinks about Himself, the happier our lives will be. As long as we think of Him according to our accusative thoughts which are not true, we will adjust our lives based upon those lies. We think that God has characteristics that He does not have. We think He is unkind, intolerant, impatient, waiting for us to step out of line so He can swat us. That is not true. He is the opposite: He is kind, faithful, and caring.

"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet…

Discharging the Duties of Your Ministry (2 Timothy 3)

“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. In the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who will judge the living and the dead, and in view of his appearing and his kingdom, I give you this charge: Preach the Word; be prepared in season and out of season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction. For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths. But you, keep your head in all situations, endure hardship, do the work of an evangelist, discharge all the duties of your ministry” (2 Timothy 3:16-4:5).

This is an instance where there should not be a chapter division. Notice that the Scripture is ins…

Timothy: A Simple & Complete Instruction

“Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save yourself and your hearers” (1 Timothy 4:16).

This is simple and complete. Your life and doctrine includes what you are and what you teach, what you do and what you say. There really isn’t anything else. The instruction is to watch these two areas closely and keep on living and teaching properly. The result is salvation for yourself and those you teach.

In the preceding paragraph, Paul amplifies this living and teaching. “Set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith and in purity.” That is the living.

“Until I come devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching.” That is the teaching.

Join the #keepthefeast Bible Reading Challenge here. This post coordinates with today's reading.
Written 1980.

Christian Books & the Bible

This is an article by Chris Schlect from The Hammer magazine, a 90's publication of CCM.

“Of making many books there is no end” (Ecclesiastes 12:12).

The Christian literature industry is booming. Secular publishing houses all print Christian books. We can even find Christian books at the grocery store. We should rejoice that Christian literature is being so widely circulated, yet at the same time we ought to pray that there be a return to biblical standards in the market.

A serious temptation accompanies the widespread availability of Christian books, and those of us involved in literature ministry are particularly susceptible. Because so many books have been written about a multitude of subjects, it is far too easy to turn to a Christian book before opening the Bible. Books written by Christians are profitable only when they are approached as a supplementary—not primary—source of guidance. True godliness is cultivated in those who labor in the Scriptures, for there we find the Lo…

The Importance of Giving Thanks

“So they are without excuse; for although they knew God they did not honor Him as God or give thanks to Him, but they became futile in their thinking and their senseless minds were darkened” (Romans l:20-21).

The increasing decadence that is described in the last half of Romans 1 starts with the choice described in verse 21: they did not honor or give thanks to God. All idolatry and immorality starts here.

This was written about people who had only natural revelation (not the Bible), and they were without excuse. How much more inexcusable are those who have special revelation (God’s Word, the Bible) and have been redeemed!

Thanksgiving is our basic means of praising God. It is, for our benefit, also a means of avoiding a critical and complaining spirit. “In everything give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you” (1 Thessalonians 5:18).

Join the #keepthefeast Bible Reading Challenge here. This post coordinates with today's reading.
Written January 1993.

Your Big Mouth (And What Proverbs Has to Say About It)

"He who is estranged seeks pretexts to break out against all sound judgment. A fool takes no pleasure in understanding but only in expressing his opinion" (Proverbs 18:1-2).

When I am estranged or separated from the Lord in fellowship, the last thing I want to hear is sound judgment. I will barricade myself against it. But since I cannot barricade against sound judgment with sound judgment, I must do it with pretexts—shallow, weak things which deceive only me. It is my attempt to stay estranged. If the searchlight of sound judgment breaks into my hideout, I find myself confessing, forsaking, and no longer estranged but restored to the Lord.

During my estrangement, I take no pleasure in understanding, but I am very eager to express my opinion. After I am back in fellowship, I am amazed at how stupid I was with my opinions. How I regret my big mouth. Truly it is foolish.

Join the #keepthefeast Bible Reading Challenge here. This post coordinates with today's reading.
Written …