Archive for February 2009

Anger

Tim McGraw has a song entitled, "Angry All the Time." He tells a sad story of a marriage that is doomed to failure, not because the couple doesn't love each other, but because anger clouds the relationship. I had a boss who was always angry. He had all of his empoyees constantly walking on eggshells. He really was a kind and generous man, but we all knew everything could change in a second.

The Bible has plenty to say about anger, but one passage stick out in my mind. The second half of Ephesians 4 has quite a bit to say on the topic. After a discussion of new man vs. old man (the complete change that the Spirit effects in the believer's life), Paul highlights several traits that are totally antithetical to a vibrant walk with Christ. Anger is a major theme. Read more ...

Published on February 12, 2009 at 8:57 pm |

Faith

There are certain concepts (and especially theological concepts) which everyone feels they understand. Faith may be the preeminent example of this phenomenon. Faith is a term that gets thrown around in everyday conversation-even non-religious conversations. Often faith is held up as a virtue in and of itself. This is a total misunderstanding. Generosity is a virtue unto itself, patience is a virtue unto itself, but faith in and of itself is an empty concept. Faith apart from an object is...nothing.

The first issue then, is to define faith. Hebrews 11:1 says, "Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen." This gives us some insight, but it still leaves us feeling unsure. Faith assures us of things which we confidently expect? Faith is the proof of what we have not or cannot see? The rational human mind rejects these statements. How can just believing something is true reassure one of its veracity? This sounds like fairy dust kind of stuff.Read more ...

Published on February 26, 2009 at 8:58 pm |

Bitterness Against Others: Simon the Magician

Bitterness kills relationships and destroys lives. Bitterness is the anger and hatred that we direct at other people because of our own selfish ambition and pride. It is a topic that is only explicitly mentioned a handful of times in the Scripture, but the passages are rich with helpful instruction about how to overcome this relationship slayer.

Here is a general idea of where we are headed:

  • Bitterness Against Others: Simon the Magician (Acts 8:18-24)
  • Bitterness Against God: Job (Job 7:11, 9:18, 10:1, etc.)
  • The Destructive Nature of Bitterness (Hebrews 12:15, Ephesians 4:23-24)

Read more ...

Published on February 28, 2009 at 8:59 pm |

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