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Showing posts from November, 2013

Book: The War on Christmas

The War on Christmas, by Bodie Hodge, was a good read in general. It's not without fault, but for the Christian exploring the origins of modern American Christmas celebrations, it's a handy resource.What's good?1. Simple reason: I'm a fan of attention-holding full-color books. The War on Christmas is one of these, and it's not overdone.2. Historical reason: Hodge admits that the dating of the birth of Jesus at December 25th is tenuous at best. This is part of the overall effort in The War on Christmas to clarify what is and isn't Biblically accurate. By doing so, Hodge presents what parts of the Christmas "experience" we should and should not be willing to be picky about.3. Reading reason: it's an easy, short read. 4. Theological reason: Hodge is clearly intent on only standing firmly on the Scripture here, rather than reaching out into the Victorian or traditional realm for requirements.What's not-so-good?1. North Pole Reason: while acknowled…

Shopping Ideas for 2013

Every year around Christmas, I try and give you a few suggestions about ways to have your gift-giving be more than just corporate fodder. Not that buying from super-mega-giant corporations is completely evil, but there just might be a few ways to give meaning along with presents this year.First, an idea that you’ve probably seen from others, but it’s new to my thinking this year. If you’re familiar with Kickstarter or Indiegogo, then you know how this works. A person or group has an idea, but instead of going to the bank or stock market for money, they take an appeal straight to the world for funding. If you like it, you can chip in for the idea. Sometimes there’s a freebie or a gift, but it’s about funding the idea. The Christmas gift suggestion? Pick a great project that your friends, family, or enemies would get behind, and support it. Use the freebies/thank yous as gifts, and fill out a card explaining what you did and why. For example, take this idea:Look at the options, and clic…

November 26 2013 by Doug

Readers: I’m still open to adding a few to the daily Proverbs contemplation. Get in touch at doug (at) doughibbard.comProverbs 26 opens with 12 verses about fools. Then Solomon moves on to sluggards, madmen, and gossips. So, the rest of the chapter deals with fools as well. Just different sorts of fools.The difficulty, I think, that we have with this passage is that fools tend to appear successful. Why would you have to warn not to honor a fool if all a fool could do is fail? Why point out the danger in hiring fools?Quite simply, because fools can manage to look good, nay even effective, and still be fools. Consider, for example, that November 26, 1095, Pope Urban II preached the sermon that kicked off the Crusades.Remarkably effective sermon—yet astoundingly foolish! Consider the difficulties and atrocities that followed it. Consider the results. Yet here was an effective sermon.We must take the warnings in Proverbs about fools seriously. The fool manages to obtain political office. …

Sermon Wrap-Up November 25

A couple of quick notes: 1) this is the last sermon before Advent, when we’ll really turn toward the manger and look hard at the purpose of the Incarnation. 2) I am hoping in the coming months to work on design around here, so if you have any useful hints on blog layouts, let me know.Morning SermonAudio Link is hereOutline:November 24 AM: Lessons from the Pilgrims I. Bloom where you are planted: 1 Corinthians 10:31/Story of Philip the Evangelist II. Make friends with the people you find: Acts 16:14-15/Lydia III. Don't just eat the fish: Proverbs 14:4, Ecclesiastes 11 IV. Mandating work and providing help are not contradictory 2 Thessalonians 3:10 and 1 Thessalonians 4:11, and James 1:26-27 and James 2:16 V. Celebrate what God does: Psalms. The whole bloomin' lot of them. And Revelation VI. Remembering the good more than bad isn't always a bad thing. Take a look at Chronicles and compare it with Kings. Video:November 24 AM Lessons from the Pilgrims from Doug Hibbard on Vime…

Book: Humility

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Today’s book addresses one of the classic questions: can you write a book on humility and not be arrogant for doing so?History is one of the greatest teachers of virtue, and biography a specialist in that field. In his work Humility: An Unlikely Biography of America’s Greatest Virtue, David J. Bobb hands the classroom over to this great teacher. Bobb finds a need for a lesson in humility and presents his case here.Wisely, Bobb does not attempt to himself as the epitome of humility. Neither does he argue the concepts from a vacuum. Rather, he takes the reader through the lives of great people from history to enlighten us.Before going into the five figures examined, Bobb first examines how Benjamin Franklin pursued humility. He widens Franklin’s pursuit of humility to point out how the Founders of our nation saw the need for humility to weave into the warp and woof of our nation.Humility’’s chapter on Jesus and Socrates was particularly interesting to me. These two are often mentioned t…

November 20 by Doug

I’m going to just hit Proverbs 20:11 and make a few observations. We have recently gotten my son started in Cub Scouts. It’s part of our effort to make sure that he learns to work together with people of different backgrounds, races, and religions to accomplish goals. The pack he’s in is a remarkably good start for that, considering just how ethnically segregated many places still feel. There are boys of various ages, races, and faiths in the group. It’s a good thing.After a few meetings, though, he and I have had some conversations about behavior in meetings. His peers haven’t really been bad—they’ve been boys who are sitting down and following rules all day in school, so they are ready to let off steam and move around in the evenings. He has an advantage over them, because he gets to play and let off a lot more boy-energy in the afternoons when he gets his schoolwork done.So, he’s usually a little more quiet and still when it’s lesson time. Now, I of course remember that when I was …

Book: The First Thanksgiving

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Pilgrims. Indians. Corn plants with three little fishes around them. Big hats with buckles on them. A blunderbuss or two, stacked with bows and arrows.All of these are the images of the first Thanksgiving from our folklore. Folklore, though, is not quite history. Robert Tracy McKenzie’s The First Thanksgiving attempts not so much to set the record straight, but to examine what the record actually is. The 200 pages of The First Thanksgiving do not come from an amateur. Dr. McKenzie is a professor of history at Wheaton College and has written on other aspects of American history. Being at Wheaton does reveal that McKenzie comes from a generally evangelical Christian viewpoint, but it is quite helpful to know the ground a book was written on.The First Thanksgiving presents itself as “What the real story tells us about loving God and learning from history.” McKenzie sets out not destroy the people who founded the Plymouth Colony of 1620, but simply to reshape their parade floats back into…

Believing for understanding: John 14

The Passage:John 14 contains Jesus teaching during His last night before the Crucifixion. Throughout this chapter, He’s wrapping up the last items the disciples need to hear before they have a very, very bad weekend. Well, until Sunday.Jesus is even upfront with this idea in John 14:29. He teaches through the coming of the Comforter and the idea of His return so that the disciples will believe when it happens. He further instructs them to be aware of the coming of the Holy Spirit. The teaching on the coming of the Spirit strains my belief in the adequacy of Scripture. I want to know more, but this is what we’ve got: The Holy Spirit is coming with a primary role of reminding of God’s Truth.We have to keep that in its context. The bulk of the chapter is dedicated to either encouraging the disciples with the hope of His return, or reminding them to obey His commandments. We find other works of the Holy Spirit in different parts of the New Testament, but here we find just those two. I sug…

Sermon Wrap-Up for November 17

Good morning one and all!Morning Sermon from November 17:November 17 AM from Doug Hibbard on Vimeo.Audio Link is here: November 17 AM Hebrews 13There’s no outline for the morning sermon.Evening Sermon from November 17:November 17 PM from Doug Hibbard on Vimeo.Audio link is here: November 17 PM Psalm 149Psalm 149 I. Be glad in our Creator--why we learn about creation! II. Praise with dancing--why we ought to dance III. Beautify with salvation--no ugly Christians! IV. Vengeance through the Word--the spread of the Word of God, defeating the enemies of God by the power of God Also, the Youtube Video of the Ohio State Marching Band referenced in the sermon is here:

November 14 2013 by Doug

I’m late. I’ll post something quickly and pretend that it’s really awesome, when it may just be something I’ve said a zillion times before. Yep, that’s the plan of the unprepared blogger, preacher, student, and so forth.Here it is: Proverbs 14. Two major themes: the elimination of middle ground, and the obvious things we miss by walking through life blind.Elimination of middle ground? Take the first verse. The foolish woman tears down the house. The wise woman builds it. Yes, it can apply literally about the structure, but it applies more widely about the family.And there’s no “the foolish woman might just be in a holding pattern.” It’s either destruction or growth. Why?Because you either fear YHWH or you don’t. If you do fear YHWH and strive to serve God, through the Spirit, bought by the blood of Jesus, then you are growing in wisdom, even if slowly. If you do not fear YHWH and reject God’s Word and plan, then you are foolish.So, you’re either building or destroying. The no-middle-g…

Cursing Yourself: Numbers 25

The Israelites have just finished up surviving Balak’s attempts to hire in a curse or two from famed religious practitioner Balaam. See these comments on those stories: Curses, Foiled Again, Only His Words, and Take a Hint! Israel has been protected by God Almighty from a threat they do not even know exists—Balak’s attempt to manipulate the spiritual realm against them.Having passed through this situation, one expects to find the Israelites either passing around Balak’s territory or conquering it. A look at the map shows that going around, or possibly through, is more likely. Balak’s territory of Moab is not really part of the Promised Land and the Israelites really just need to get around it to Canaan.Except while they are camped out, someone has an idea. A horrid idea if you’re an Israelite, and a great idea if you’re a Moabite. The idea? Something like this: “Let’s try and get those Israelites to join us in a few wild parties, entice them with pseudo-religion, and hook up with us. …

Book:Innovation’s Dirty Little Secret

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Today’s book is sponsored by the ever-growing Cross-Focused Reviews. Need some book publicity? Hit Shaun up and see what he can do.I’ll start you with the video book trailer:Innovation’s Dirty Little Secret by Larry Osborne is a book. There. That’s not much of an innovative label, but then again I have the fear of failure that Osborne references so very often in his text. That fear of not getting it right that hampers a person from doing anything or taking any risk.That is, I suppose, a spoiler for Innovation’s Dirty Little Secret, but it’s not a plot book, so I’m unconcerned. The real purpose of Osborne’s work here is to present techniques and ideas for how to get over that fear. With 172 pages, he has time enough to address the issue but not enough time to beat it to death. (Having just read two 400+ page books on leadership, I’ve seen beaten to death on the subject.)My fundamental concern with Innovation’s Dirty Little Secret is that, with Osborne writing as a pastor, his book has …

Wednesday Wanderings: Samson

We’re still in a section of Judges that I have recently preached, so I’ll link you back there first: http://www.doughibbard.com/2013/11/sermon-wrap-up-for-november-3.htmlNow, on to today’s thoughts regarding Samson.First, I find it interesting more and more how we tell Bible stories to children. Looking at the Gospel Project material that we are using, there are parts left out, and that’s often the case. For example, we don’t children the parts about Samson’s first fiancé being ‘given’ to the best man—or her and her father’s subsequent murder by angry mob.Not that I think we need to bury children with such evil, but I think something is to be said for being careful not to make heroes of people for kids that we then deflate when they are adults. Or to sugarcoat them. Perhaps they are best left untold. Or done with what VeggieTales did with David and Bathsheba, and make a fairytale that covers the material differently. Kids can put together that King George’s rubber ducks were a stand-i…

November 13, 2013 by Doug

Author’s Note: This blog was initially conceived as a group project. I’m down a few group members. Anyone interested? Email doug @ doughibbard.com with the subject line “Proverbs Blog” and tell me you want to and why you should. I’m after a few people to share 250-400 words about Proverbs, with the goal being the chapter connected to the day—Proverbs 13 on the 13th of the month. Why that? Just for organization’s sake. Not much in it for you but the challenge and the link-backs to your own writings for a little bit more traffic.I will consider any Bible believing Christian who would like to contribute.A consistent refrain of Proverbs 13 is discipline. Discipline, as in choosing to do what needs doing whether or not you want to. For if you do not have this discipline, you will have the other type: negative consequences for failing to do what needed to be done.How is discipline the refrain of Proverbs 13?Proverbs 13:11 reflects on the value of wealth by labor compared to the loss of frau…

Books: The Dinah Harris Mysteries

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Today, I’d like to pull of the shelf and mention to you Julie Cave’s Dinah Harris Mysteries series. All together, they look like this: I’ve linked Julie Cave’s website to the picture you see to the left. She’s also a blog writer, and has some great stuff on her website. Plus, you can purchase the series through her site and show some additional support. Her blog’s a little out of date—maybe because she’s in Australia and it’s not quite now there yet The Dinah Harris Mysteries is a trilogy of stories that center on, you guessed it, Dinah Harris. Harris begins the series as an alcoholic FBI agent, and her work takes her through a journey both professional and personal. By the end of it all, at least one of these will change. Of course, the challenge of commending good fiction to you is that I would hate to crash the plot.The Dinah Harris Mysteries involve investigations of crimes targeting Bible-centered Christians. At least one case digs into the darker side of church reality: there ar…

Only from Behind You: John 13

There is so much in the Passion Week narratives of John, that begin here in John 13 and continue until John 21, and I hate for you to miss any of it. I cannot, however, write it all in one blog post, so I’m going to narrow down one thing. One person, really.Judas.While the finality of Judas’ betrayal does not come for a few more chapters, it begins here. Judas goes out from among the disciples, from the inner circle, and finalizes his deal with the religious establishment and ruling authorities. The end is well-known, and typically accepted even by those who doubt the validity of any other part of the Gospel: Jesus goes to His death, betrayed there by His friend.Countless bottles of ink have been spilled over Judas’ actions. Even the M*A*S*H episode “Quo Vadis, Captain Chandler?” (one of my favorites out of 11 seasons) features a discussion about Judas’ motivations. Typically, we want to know why? Yet the reality is that there were only 12 people who could have betrayed Jesus. You fin…

Book: Good Ideas from Questionable Christians and Outright Pagans

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Today’s Book is just a pull off the shelf. I have a slew of great, good, or useful books that I’d like to share with you.I am, unashamedly, a Christian. A right-wing, conservative lunatic, raving crazy Bible-is-always-right kind of Christian. Inherent in this is the assumptive belief that if we only had the Bible, we would be okay. I firmly support having more than the Bible for learning, but the Bible sits on the top of the stack.All good ideas in history, though, do not come from the Bible alone. Steve Wilkens Good Ideas from Questionable Christians and Outright Pagans plunges into ten people’s ideas who can, at best, be considered questionable Christians because of their theology. Others are certainly not Christians. Yet their ideas are helpful. Unlike the classic division phrased by Tertullian of “What indeed has Athens to do with Jerusalem?,” we see that Athens, the land of philosophy and pagans, has something useful to say to Jerusalem, the land of the holy.The pagans involved, …

Sermon Wrap-Up for November 10

Good Morning. I was able to freely preach the Word of God yesterday, and that freedom truly goes back to a group of militiamen in April 1775. It has been zealously guarded by generations of men and women, some conscripted to its protection and some volunteered, but none were left unchanged. I have long wondered how to best honor the legacy of those who serve, including my own father. Thank you seems to be inadequate, but there is precious little else available. So, Thank You. We must never forget nor abandon the freedoms you all helped secure, and forgive us for not heeding the warnings of those whose blood poured to preserve us all.Morning Sermon: (Click title for audio)Hebrews 13:1-4 November 10 AM Almyra FBCI. Love of the Brethren--the community of love for ChristII. Remember those imprisoned for their faithIII. Be grateful for what you have that keeps you out of prisonIV. Do not equate your troubles falsely with real troublesNovember 10 AM Sermon from Doug Hibbard on Vimeo.Evening…

November 11, 2013 by Doug

We now look to Proverbs 11. Find the chapter that contrasts the righteous and wicked to be an interesting one on this Veteran’s Day. After all, many countries take this day to honor either those who fought in World War One or all those who have fought for their country. Here in the US, it’s all veterans who have served their nation since 1775. The date chosen marks the day that World War One ended. I’m not sure what the obsession with 11 was, but I recall reading a history book that pointed out the truce time as 11/11/18 at 11:11. I’m having trouble verifying that it went all the way to the time, but the alleged “War to End All Wars” ended that day. Twenty years later, and a worse war was inevitable.Proverbs 11 expresses why this happened, and really why any war happens. Take a look at Proverbs 11:9, especially the first part. Words of the wicked destroy their neighbors. Proverbs 11:11 even gives us that the words of the wicked can destroy cities.We find, though, this chapter resounds…

Friday Thoughts: Date Night 2013

For the record, no it’s not that we have one date night a year and this is about 2013. It’s just that these are thoughts about the subject of having a “date night” and it’s 2013.There are two errors that I think couples fall into when it comes to “date nights” once the relationship is established. The first is this: calling every thing you do with just the two of you “date night.” I think that’s a mistake, because in the long run, it leaves you without special moments.To illustrate, let’s consider the Hibbard family for a few moments. My wife, Ann, is currently working from home for Home Educating Family, a homeschool resource. I do school from my computer, and much of my study-related work as a pastor can be done from home as well. In short, there’s no real dividing line around here between “home,” “work,” “school,” and even “church.” It all kind of blends together.So, Ann and I could be home, with the kids in bed or off doing their own thing, and be working. Or we could be doing nec…

November 8 2013 by Doug

Proverbs 8 is a long chapter commending wisdom. I want to focus on the latter part of the chapter.In Proverbs 8:22-36 we see the proclamation that Wisdom predates Creation. There is a primal idea here, that Wisdom is not something that comes after the existence of reality. This matters for us, because if Wisdom comes after the material universe, then it is dependent on material reality. Otherwise, if Wisdom predates material existence, then the only sure way to get at the root of Wisdom is to seek what or who may have been there to institute wisdom.If we want to find wisdom, we should see two things. First, we should see that the basic principles of wisdom will echo in all of Creation. We can learn and develop ideas about wisdom by studying Creation—the General Revelation of God.Second, though, we should see that understanding wisdom requires us to seek and understand God. The idea being that Wisdom has its source not in what God created, but that God used Wisdom in the process of Cre…

Book: What Every Christian Needs to Know about the Qur’an

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Disclaimer: I’ve been sitting on this one for a while. This book was provided by Bethany House Publishers several months ago, and I just have had a hard time getting it finished.James R. White’s What Every Christian Needs to Know about the Qur’an answers one key question in the title. It’s “Qur’an” and not “Koran,” at least according to White. I do not know that this bothers anyone else, but there you go, and that’s settled. It is also worth noting that Islamic tradition calls for the label of “Holy Qur’an,” at least based on what I have seen in writings based in Islamic cultures. White does as I will do and not use that—I do not expect a Muslim critic of the Bible to refer to it as the Holy Bible if he did not believe it to be from God, I will not add an adjective to Qur’an that I do not think applies.Moving on. Within Christian Internet circles, James R. White is fairly well-known as a preacher and radio/podcast host. He also spends a good deal of time debating members of other reli…

Book: What Every Christian Needs to Know about the Qur’an

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Disclaimer: I’ve been sitting on this one for a while. This book was provided by Bethany House Publishers several months ago, and I just have had a hard time getting it finished.James R. White’s What Every Christian Needs to Know about the Qur’an answers one key question in the title. It’s “Qur’an” and not “Koran,” at least according to White. I do not know that this bothers anyone else, but there you go, and that’s settled. It is also worth noting that Islamic tradition calls for the label of “Holy Qur’an,” at least based on what I have seen in writings based in Islamic cultures. White does as I will do and not use that—I do not expect a Muslim critic of the Bible to refer to it as the Holy Bible if he did not believe it to be from God, I will not add an adjective to Qur’an that I do not think applies.Moving on. Within Christian Internet circles, James R. White is fairly well-known as a preacher and radio/podcast host. He also spends a good deal of time debating members of other reli…

Book: Why Christ Came

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Continuing with our book-a-day effort, I’m still clearing out some book review books. Eventually, I’m going to get that stack emptied and start doing what I really want to with this, and push a book-a-day that is not new, not being marketed, but still worth your time. For now, though, I’ve got commitments to honor.We are bearing down on Christmastime again, so it’s time for the Christmas books to come pouring out. I’ve got at least one more coming, but today I’ve got Why Christ Came, from Joel R. Beeke and William Boekestein. It’s published by Reformation Heritage Books, and is a 31-day devotional book that looks like this: What’s to like about this little book? First, Why Christ Came is unapologetically focused on all of the story of Christ, beginning with the Incarnation. That in itself is a great reminder at Christmastime. We must look from the manger to the cross to the empty tomb every day, but it does us good to remember the whole story.Second, Why Christ Came is unafraid of big…

November 7 2013

Sticking with the concept of summarizing the whole chapter this month, Proverbs 7 continues the imperative to the sons of the king. The imperative here is one of warning: avoid the adulteress.This, like Proverbs 5, carries a double meaning. Now, these double meaning moments in Scripture are not a matter of just making up something and claiming it’s present in the text. Nor is it a matter of allegorizing everything, where nothing is what it really says, and instead it all means some invisible indiscernible to normal people stuff. Rather, it’s seeing the symbolism for what it is. Take, for example, Star Trek. On its face, Star Trek is about a group of people exploring the galaxy, seeking out new life forms and new civilizations. There is a lesson every episode, about dealing with Tribbles or whatever else, but there’s an underlying point as well. Not that everyone speaks English in the future, but that people can work together across racial, cultural, and (dare I say it?) planetary line…

Take a Hint! Numbers 24

We are nearly to the end of the Balaam Narratives in Numbers. We’ve seen Balaam try and balance personal profit with fearing God. We’ve seen Balaam pronounce blessings that I do not think he expected to pronounce. We’ve seen him talk to his own donkey, and God speaking through a talking donkey deserves an entire blog series of its own.I digress. Today in Numbers 24, we see Balaam beginning to get the idea. Numbers 24:1 tells us he saw that it pleased YHWH to bless Israel. At which point, Balaam then sets aside his ways of seeking ‘prophecy’ and the true Spirit of the One True God came upon him. (Numbers 24:2) He then speaks words of blessing over Israel, which we could go all Bible-nerdy and debate whether they are blessings that would not have happened had they not been said, or if they were simply foretellings of the blessing of YHWH that would come upon Israel.Hint: it’s the latter. While our ‘self-narrative’ affects our life, the words spoken by someone with no power or authority …

Wednesday Wanderings: Gideon

We’re now working through the book of Judges with the Wednesday night kids. I know that I’ve recently preached through this area, so here’s the sermon link: http://www.doughibbard.com/2013/10/sermon-wrap-up-for-october-6.htmlNow, on to a few additional questions and thoughts:1. I’ve always been fascinated by the fleece aspects of the narrative. I’m not sure we’re supposed to approve or disapprove of Gideon’s need for confirmation. We have such clear certainty of how God has spoken in Scripture that I think we miss how challenging it was in those times to be certain who and what you were talking to.2. I don’t think you can make a case that the final 300 were chosen for their valor or skill. We’ve often seen people make the case that these showed a vigilance or skill level, but that’s uncertain. Perhaps it’s the case, but ultimately, the skill and valor of the 300 avails nothing in combat. It’s all about the chaos God brings3. One of my big questions in this overall passage is the ident…

Book: The Wayfinding Bible

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One question I am asked, from time to time, is "How do I get started reading the Bible?" After all, the Bible is a collection of writings that span 1600 years of composition, various human authors, and a single Divine Author. Where do you start?For years, I have suggested the book of 1 John (the First Epistle of John) as a starting point to learn of the love of God and basic truths of Christianity. However, it's always been a challenge of where to go next. There are various aids to that, and into the scene of study Bibles comes The Wayfinding Bible. Rather than being a Study Bible like many that are out there already, The Wayfinding Bible takes a different approach.First, there are basic introductions to each book of the Bible. These are not in-depth, so if you are a long-time Bible student, you may notice some lack there. However, these are adequate to the first time reader, whether teenaged or older. These are presented in color, which helps with interest and clarity.S…

Not Stinketh! John 12

Well, John 11 was about those that stinketh, so this seemed like a good title.John 12 is the turning point from active public ministry to the Cross. This is six days before the Crucifixion, and leads into the Triumphal Entry. I preached on this back in April, 2012, and the link is here if you want that outline. (The audios are here: morning and evening if you just want to listen.)This is another of those chapters that are remarkably rich. You have the anointing of Jesus for burial, the Triumphal Entry, a story about Greeks seeking Jesus, and the clear statement by Jesus that His death was imminent. I’m personally persuaded John should have twice as many chapters for the content, it’s far too easy to miss things in the current arrangement. I would simply, today, contrast for you the people, especially the rulers, in John 12:42 with Mary in John 12:3. We have much to learn from these two verses that almost summarize the point of this chapter.First, we have Mary. Despite opposition by on…

November 5 2013 by Doug

Proverbs 5 is our focus for today. Again, let’s take the whole chapter and examine it. Why? Because Solomon didn’t write in verses only, though one could argue that Proverbs and Psalms are the main books where the verse divisions are actually meaningful.This chapter is an extended warning against immorality. I think it is valid, in the context of the book, to see two things here:1. The absolutely plain meaning: there is a standard of morality, and one should not violate it. That’s a big “duh!” However, we both do it anyway, and elect leaders, follow leaders, empower leaders that violate it every blasted day.I’m not speaking of the “well, we’re all sinners, we all make mistakes” type of issues. I’m speaking of the “I have no regard for right and wrong” folks. And they are out there. In Congress, in Governor’s Mansions, in Capitols, and even worse: in pulpits, studies, and denominational offices. First and foremost, we must strive to evict immorality from our lives. The text here speaks…

Book: Awakening Faith

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Running a book a day, hopefully, trying to clear some backlog.There’s a consistent problem in modern life, whenever modern is for you. That problem is this: we tend to think that we are the smartest people to ever life. No one else has had the same problems or come up with the same solution to those problems. No other generation has figured out what we know—it was refreshing to hear a conversation recently about the plethora of “Gospel-centered” books and how we come across as if we discovered the Gospel in the last decade, when the Church has been around for two millennia. It’s not healthy.Into that problem comes a few good ideas. One of those ideas is to reach out and read from prior generations. That can be intimidating to tackle in one fell swoop, but a good way is to take little bites and see what has been said in ages past. If you couple that with the excellent idea of daily readings to help draw us nearer to God, then you can accomplish this by picking up James Stuart Bell’s Aw…