The Discomfort of Discipline

“All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful…” (Hebrews 12:11) That goes for both parties. Both the Discipliner and Disciplined. It’s not pleasant. Haven’t we ever heard the common refrain from the parent that is raising their hand to bring discipline down upon the seat cushioning of a child, “This hurts me more than it hurts you”? That’s typically more a figurative statement than a literal one (however, the discipline can leave a parents hand stinging as well). For the moment, the discipline is sorrowful. The parent is sorrow their child has done wrong, and the child is sorrowful they got caught. The parent is sorrowful that their instruction was not followed. The pa

A Critical Situation

Throughout the New Testament you can read of the Lord’s church facing critical situations; Situations that they had to deal with decisively, and most importantly… scripturally. The most critical situations a church had to deal with revolved around sin, and correcting that sin. Whether it be the “busybodies” of the church at Thessalonica (II Thess. 3), the morally reprehensible at Corinth (I Cor. 5), or various issues 6 of the 7 churches of Asia had to deal with (Rev. 2-3); we can see throughout the Lord’s church that critical situations arose that demanded brethren's’ attention. Today, things are no different. One of the critical situations we must recognize and deal with in the Lord’s churc

Ecclesiastes on Evangelism

Most people associate Ecclesiastes with “vanity”, the “brevity of life”, or the “whole duty of man” (“to fear God and keep His commandments”). But there are wonderful insightful lessons throughout the book that are worthy of our study and consideration. Consider with me the following passages as they relate to evangelism. Ecclesiastes 11:4 – “He who watches the wind will not sow and he who looks at the clouds will not reap.” This concept is so simple that it is hard for us to miss or misapply. It is a general truth that is spoken to make the point that we must be active in sowing. Jesus teaches the same principle in Matthew 25:14-30 in the Parable of the Talents. Without action, without work

Parable of the Cancelled Services

One Saturday the elders of a church sent out a notice to all of the brethren that services that Sunday were cancelled due to forecasted inclement weather. While a few brethren were up-set and perplexed because there was only a 10% chance of sprinkles, many were relieved. The next week, the elders sent out a notice again that services were going to cancelled for a second week in a row, this time, due to a flu epidemic that was going around. Some of the members were disappointed and wondered why just the sick people couldn’t stay home, but others were relieved to have another Sunday “free”. The following week, AGAIN the elders sent out a notice to the church to inform them that ser-vices would

Dec. 31st - The Last Day

What if today, December 31st, was not just the last day of 2017, but the last day… period? What if instead of sitting and reading this you were standing… having your judgement read to you? (Revelation 20:12) What if this was it; the end of your time on earth… the beginning of your eternity? (Hebrews 9:27) (Be wise -it may still be yet! Luke 12:16-21; I Thessalonians 5:2-3) What would that eternity look like? Reflection - Our eternity is a reflection of the choices we make here and now. One choice in particular; whether or not we obey the gospel and become, and be, a disciple (follower) of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. (II Thessalonians 1:7-10) Those who believe and obey, their eternity w

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