Enjoying the Journey

Posts Tagged ‘Jesus Christ’

I Only Have One Message

Dr. Tom Malone used to joke about having five sermons and five hundred titles. My pastor challenged me years ago to work constantly at preparing new Bible messages. That counsel has been of inestimable value to me. It is easy to let your soul grow stale when the Bible is so fresh! As I have labored to study and prepare new messages I have come back to one essential. It was one of the first homiletics lessons I ever received. As a teenage preacher, struggling over what to preach in a certain meeting, my dad extended to me a priceless truth. He said, “When you don’t know what to preach, just preach Jesus.” Then he added, “And when you think…

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His Name Is Not A Swear Word!

Have you noticed it? I heard it sitting in a restaurant last week. It was muttered by someone who passed me in an airport recently. Yesterday it was spoken across a hotel lobby. Jesus. No, they were not speaking to Him or about Him. They were just using His name for their own ends. It is interesting to me that those who speak the name of “Jesus” or “Jesus Christ” so flippantly never say, “Lord Jesus Christ.” You cannot call Him Lord and use His name as your servant. When Jesus is Lord His name is Master. The third commandment is, “Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain” (Ex. 20:7a). Dr. Frank Sells taught us…

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Our Daily Bread

This week a fine young man sent me a message asking how to keep his mind fixed on Christ while surrounded by so many distractions.  It is not an easy question to answer because it is not an easy task to fulfill.  It is the battle that all of us fight every day! My response to him was brief.  I am more convinced every day that God intended His children to meet Him in the morning.  The devotional time is not limited to a few minutes alone.  We enter the presence of God so that we may live in His presence all day.  The great goal of prayer and meditation in the Word of God is to know God in a…

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Traveling

Another trip.  I am sitting in a hotel room in Fort Worth, Texas tonight.  Tomorrow we host an Open House at Crown Southwest and begin a Regional Youth Congress.  I have no complaints, only gratitude.  Traveling is a privilege and an opportunity to grow.  I learn something on every journey and, with Christ, it is the adventure of a lifetime. Many travels have caused me to realize an aspect of our Lord’s earthly life that I never truly considered.  Jesus Christ was the ultimate Traveler.  For 33 1/2 years He was away from home.  At night He had no place to lay His head.  Scripture tells us that when others went to their own houses Jesus went to the Mount…

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Kind People in a Mean World

There once was a school that had but one rule.  (Oh, what a wonderful place that would be!)  It is now known as Washington and Lee University and Robert E. Lee was at one time the headmaster of this institution.  During his tenure the story is told that only one rule was enforced. It was simply: Be kind. This world of sinners can be a cruel place to live.  Churches full of sinners are often no less cruel.  Meanness abounds.  Because of this, it is always refreshing when you cross paths with someone who exhibits true kindness. Kindness is not a sentiment.  It is an action.  It is the action of our loving Father and it should be the action…

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Joy in the Midst of Conflict

Lester Roloff used to sing an old gospel song that said, “It’s a battlefield brother, not a recreation room.  It’s a fight and not a game!  So run if you want to, run if you will.  But I came here to stay!”  Our generation would much rather have a recreation room.  Give us the games, because there is little fight in us! The problem with this, of course, is that the fight doesn’t go away because we hunker down in the trenches.  Our adversary keeps shooting his fiery darts.  Casualties are falling all around.  We have ignored the spiritual conflict, but it is hotter than it has ever been. A few days ago I sat in a coffee shop with…

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The Biggest Birthday Celebration in the World

We are only days away from the biggest birthday celebration in the world!  No birthday on earth has more celebration or more misunderstanding.  A recent Pew survey suggests that half of Americans will not celebrate Christmas as a religious holiday this year.  For more and more people Christmas is becoming a cultural holiday.  “Happy holidays,” they say.  Ironic since the word holiday comes from holy day.  Without the holy there is no true happiness.  The world wants to celebrate His birthday without using His name. There has been a good deal of debate over the actual birth day of the Christ child.  It is interesting to note that Alfred Edersheim, the famous Jewish researcher and author, suggests that December 25…

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Top of the List: Why Was Jesus Thankful?

Like most of you I try to make a list each Thanksgiving of reasons for which I am grateful to God.  Obviously it is never complete because the blessings never end.  This year I have decided not to make a list.  I am taking the list of Another who is far better at thankfulness than I. The Gospel records provide insight not only into the prayer life of the Lord Jesus but into His “praise life.”  The Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief was constantly thanking His Father.  His thirty-three and a half years were spent not only considering the joy that was before Him (Hebrews 12:2) but also the joys that were all around Him.  This is where…

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What About Eternity?

A friend and I were enjoying a time of fellowship together just a few days ago.  During the conversation I asked about a man who had been a pastor in the town where I was visiting.  The answer was all too familiar – he was no longer in the ministry but doing very well in business. And then my friend said something I cannot forget:  “The last time I heard from him he said that life couldn’t be better.” How is that possible? I believe the greatest life is the life given to God, the life of obedience to His will.  It is not always the easiest life – in fact it never is!  Following Christ leads to a cross.…

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A Word for Young People About Parents

Like most children, when I was very young, I memorized the Ten Commandments.  The fifth commandment says, “Honour thy father and thy mother.”  It is repeated eight times in the Bible.  As a boy, if my mother said something once I was supposed to listen.  If she said it twice, I was definitely supposed to listen.  If she had to say it three times, it was too late to listen!  When God repeats something it is always for emphasis. This is God’s word to every young person: “Honour thy father and thy mother.” For many years I quoted it without even knowing what it meant.  The word honor means to assign value to something, to treat it as a prize. …

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