At Issue – Self-Reliance

Zechariah 4:6 God brings us to the end of ourselves to show us how much, how desperately, we need him. We need the power of his Spirit to help us walk in obedience, no matter the cost. We need his help to forgive as we’ve been forgiven, to love as we’ve been loved, to be patient with others as he’s been patient with us. Only through the Spirit can we break the power of sin in our lives—whether it’s addiction or bitterness or gossip. So Continue Reading

The Woman of Samaria

Her character: Looked down upon by the Jews because she was a Samaritan and disdained because of her many romantic liaisons, she would not have been most people's first choice to advance the gospel in a region where it had not yet been heard. / Her sorrow: To have lived in a way that relegated her to the margins of her society. / Her joy: That Jesus broke through barriers of culture, race, and religion in order to reveal himself to her. / Continue Reading

Providing for the Family

1 Timothy 5:1–16 Anyone who does not provide for their relatives, and especially for their own household, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever. / 1 Timothy 5:8 Recently a friend recommended a course offered at her church titled “Financial Self-Defense.” My first thought was that the church should offer another one called “Financial CPR” for those whose finances need complete resuscitation. My husband and I are Continue Reading

A glorious church

‘Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; that he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, that he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing.’ Ephesians 5:25–27 Suggested Further Reading: Jeremiah 31:1–3; 31–34 A husband loves his wife with a constant love, and so does Christ his church. He will not cast her Continue Reading

Why set boundaries with Bad people?

1 Corinthians 5:10-11 – ““You must not associate with anyone who claims to be a brother or a sister but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or slanderer, a drunkard or swindler.”” Is it really necessary to set boundaries with “bad” people? Why draw the line if we’re their only hope to help them repent or change their ways? In 1 Corinthians 5:9-13, the Apostle Paul answers this perplexing question: I wrote to you in my letter not to Continue Reading

Adultery

Exodus 20:14 You shall not commit adultery. [Matt. 5:28; Rom. 1:24; Eph. 5:3; Prov. 6:25, 26]. Observe here the expansion of the thought in the catechism which includes whoredom in all its forms, as well as unchastity [premarital relations, sexual impurity, and lustful desire under whatever name] [Lange’s Commentary, condensed]. Not only adultery is forbidden here, but also fornication and all kinds of mental and sensual Continue Reading

Setting Boundaries on the Fear of Change

Setting Boundaries on the Fear of Change Deuteronomy 31:6 – ““Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”” One of the most important boundaries that people have to establish is against the tendency to put off changes that they know need to be made. If you think about it, much “waiting” and putting off changes has nothing to do with Continue Reading

Children have foolishness bound up in their heart; Some hate their children

Proverbs 13: 24 24 He that spareth his rod hateth his son: but he that loveth him chasteneth him betimes. Note, 1. To the education of children in that which is good there is necessary a due correction of them for what is amiss; every child of ours is a child of Adam, and therefore has that foolishness bound up in its heart which calls for rebuke, more or less, the rod and reproof which give wisdom. Observe, It is his rod that must be Continue Reading

BOUNDARIES – The Two Types of Liars

Colossians 3:9–10 – “Do not lie to each other, since you have taken off your old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its Creator.” The ability to build a healthy relationship is based on the degree to which you are able to be clear and honest about everything, especially in a dating situation. Sometimes, people will deceive each other about the nature of other people in Continue Reading

BOUNDARIES – How to Risk Trusting Someone Again

Proverbs 2:1-5 – “If you accept my words and store up my commands within you, turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding—indeed, if you call out for insight and cry aloud for understanding, and if you look for it as for silver and search for it as for hidden treasure, then you will understand the fear of the Lord and find the knowledge of God.” When you’ve been let down by someone who matters a great deal to you, Continue Reading