Archive for January, 2012
Tomorrow is Martin Luther King Day in our country. That day commemorates the tremendous strides that have been made in our nation in the area of civil rights. The Declaration of Independence says that “all men are created equal and are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights,” namely the right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. And certainly in the last 50 years our nation has made great strides in this realm. And as believers we must rejoice in this because social justice comes from the heart of God.
But there is one group of human beings in our land today whose rights are not being protected. They do not have the freedoms that other human beings enjoy in our land. I’m talking about approximately 1 million of these human beings who were robbed of their right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I’m talking about the unborn. (more…)
“Then he said to them all: ‘If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me’” (Luke 9:23).
In my message yesterday to the Travis Avenue Baptist Church I challenged believers with the truth that following Jesus Christ is serious business. When Jesus set out the conditions by which we are to follow Him as disciples, He didn’t hold anything back. There’s no fine print. He’s straight up with us about the kind of life we are saved to live as disciples.
Our church’s Blueprint for Spiritual Formation reminds us of what the Bible teaches about our mission. We “join God in developing passionate followers of Jesus Christ.” Our sole purpose for existence as a church is to join God in what He is doing in this world, the main thing being the making of disciples (Matthew 28:18-20). (more…)
Open your Bibles to Luke 14:25. There’s one overriding truth running right through Jesus’ teaching here: Following Christ is serious business. I want you to notice the two groups that Jesus has in His focus.
Luke 14:25-26 – Large crowds … my disciple.
There is the “large crowd,” and there are those who would come out of the crowd to be a “disciple.” There were large crowds because Jesus was at the zenith of His popularity in the eyes of the Jews. They had seen Jesus heal the sick, raise the dead, feed the hungry and deliver the oppressed. But it’s clear that there’s a difference between the “crowds travelling with Jesus,” and those who have a relationship with Jesus as His “disciple.” (more…)
“Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed” (Luke 5:16).
We can only imagine how rich were the times of communion that Jesus enjoyed with His Father. What depths of intimacy did Jesus and the Father experience in those precious occasions? Of course Jesus lived in continuous fellowship with His Father. There was never a moment when Jesus was “offline,” spiritually speaking.
Unfortunately, that is not the case for us. Struggling as we do with worldly or sinful distractions, we can easily let the days slip by without turning aside to enjoy time alone with God. (more…)