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    Praying for the Impossible

    I was recently convicted about the power of prayer. Reading through the book of Acts, I came to the story of Peter’s imprisonment.  If you’re just skimming your reading or you have read the story many times over, it’s tempting to take this moment for granted. With a fresh glance, I was struck by this encounter in the early church and all that it implies for my life and yours. The infamous King Herod was at it yet again. Actually, this time it wasn’t Herod the Great, the famous King who slaughtered many children, hoping to find baby Jesus among the carnage; this was one of King Herod’s legacies, his…

  • Angels, feathers, and the need for comfort when experiencing grief

    Angels, feathers, and the need for comfort when experiencing grief

    During a recent Bible Study, I listened as a woman shared about her Christian friend whose godly mother had recently died. This sorrowing woman was grieving and needing comfort. To help with her grief, she drew from something she had heard in the culture—that her mother had now become an angel and was present with her, communicating with her. As we talked about this, looking into what was true or not and how to help someone grieving like that, our discussion encompassed three different issues. 1. Do Christians become angels when they die? 2. Can our loved ones in heaven see what is happening in our lives on earth and…

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    The Origin of Evil

    When did evil and sin enter the world? In the Garden of Eden? And who created evil? Some blame God for temptation and evil by default since he created everything. But let’s rewind. In a galaxy far far away, God created all the angels all at once. And they lived in the stellar places amongst the stars. (Since this is just a blog post and not a seminary paper, I’ll let you verify those gems on your own. A good Systematic Theology text should suffice.)   Now because God only creates “good” and “very good,” he made each angel good, or what some would call “holy.” But Jude 1:6 says,…

  • Impact

    The Son, worthy to redeem the lost

    Title:The Son, worthy to redeem the lost Aim: To turn to the Savior for help, especially in our times of struggle. Scripture: Revelation 5:1–14   The worthiness of the Messiah, Revelation 5:1–5   The major literary segments of Revelation have an introductory throne room scene, which lays the foundation for the verses that follow. For instance, the vision of the exalted Messiah recorded in 1:9-20 is a preface to the messages to the seven churches found in chapters 2 and 3.    Likewise, the throne room scene recorded in chapters 4 and 5 is a prelude to the seal judgments. The first six of these are recorded in chapter 6, followed by…

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    The Angels Of Advent

    You can’t consider Advent without acknowledging the role of angels. Intricately woven into the story of the birth of Christ are these created beings – often pictured by the artists of old with wings, flowing robes and long hair. Consider three of the prominent roles angels played. Preparation was put in place to ready the participants in the nativity story. Can you imagine the orchestration behind the scenes in heaven within the Trinity and with the angels as the drama began to unfold? God was getting His message out – revealing His heart, His plan to the ones He had chosen for this certain invasion into earth. In the exact,…

  • Heartprints

    How to Have Your Own Advent Wreath

    Christmas will be here before we know it. It’s time to start gathering the things you need to help your family or classroom really get the most out of the season. The Advent wreath is a part of many church services but it originally started in homes. The Advent wreath is a really great way to help our families focus on Christ throughout the season. There are many different versions on line. I want to share what I found out about how to put together an Advent wreath with you. It all begins with a wreath. Insert four candles in a circle with one in the middle. Traditionally three of…

  • Impact

    Peace on Earth

      Peace on Earth War.   Every decade of my life has been scarred by war. It seems to me that we have a constant longing for peace and a constant reality of war.   It began for me when I was in first grade, just barely learning to read, and I used to spread the newspaper out on the living room floor, mostly to look at the pictures. I still remember one vivid scene from World War II of a US ship at sea spewing black smoke on its way to destruction. I also remember the wild celebration on VJ day, as all our neighborhood poured out of our…

  • Impact

    God’s CIA

    I am referring to God’s Covenant Implementing Angels (CIA). Realize, long before man was created on Earth, God created millions of beings called angels to serve Him (Job 38:4-7 stars = angels in Revelation 1:20. Revelation 5:11). Unfortunately, one of the ruling angels or archangels called Lucifer led a rebellion (1) with one-third of the other angels following him (Revelation 12:4). Nevertheless, they were quickly defeated, their authority (but not power) removed and they were cast out of Heaven (Luke 10:18) (8). Today we know the Archangel Lucifer by the name of Satan (Satan means the adversary or accuser of the brethren – Revelation 12:10).

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    Don’t Wish Me Luck

    A Christian high school in the Chicago area displayed a disturbing message for one of their teams on their marquee: “Good luck in the State Finals!” I knew they were wishing them well, but unwittingly, the message writer had bought into an unbiblical worldview. There is no such thing as luck! The concept of luck is an animistic belief, which is the core of folk religion worldwide: a belief in the unseen world that is populated by various kinds of spirits such as the spirits of the dead (ghosts) and nature spirits, as well as unseen supernatural forces: fate, the “evil eye,” magic, witchcraft, impersonal energy forces (“chi”) . . .…

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    Funeral Myths

    I went to a friend’s funeral yesterday where I heard a number of things to add to my running mental list of “funeral myths .” With the ever-increasing degree of Bible Illiteracy, combined with the growing number of believers who are “cultural captives,” more conformed to the culture than to Christ (please see my earlier blog “Are You a Pickle?”), it’s not surprising that people would have unbiblical beliefs about death, heaven, and God. Several songs were played at my friend’s funeral. One is called “Borrowed Angels,” which started like this: They shine a little brighter, they feel a little more They touch your life in ways no one has…