Posts by Bryant Perkins (Page 3)

Posts by Bryant Perkins (Page 3)

Jesus Transforms Lives!

I read this article in a recent issue of “Let’s Visit,” the weekly bulletin of the Center Church of Christ. I thought it made a familiar, but significant, point really well and decided to include it here in this space. I commend it to your attention. BP In the fourth chapter of the Gospel according to John, we have the story of Jesus and the woman of Sychar that he met at Jacob’s well. Jesus and the disciples had left…

No Plan B

There is an old story, well-worn preacher’ story, a legend of Jesus after his ascension. I have not been able to source it; it has been attributed to everyone from William Barclay to one of the Church Fathers. But it tells of an imaginary conversation between Jesus and the angel Gabriel. It runs something like this: After Jesus ascended to heaven, the angel Gabriel approached Him. Seeing the holes in his wrists and feet and the wound in his side,…

That You May Have Fellowship

That which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. (1 John 1:3) At the outset of his first letter, John says his purpose in writing is to ensure his readers have fellowship with God the Father, with Jesus Christ, and, as a result, with John himself. Fellowship is obviously a word we all know,…

Daily Bread

Robert Murray M’Cheyne was a 19th century minister in the Church of Scotland. He died before he reached his thirtieth birthday, and he only spent 7 and a half years in vocational ministry. But in that brief time, he made such a strong impression that he was known throughout Scotland as “the saintly M’Cheyne.” As one contemporary wrote on his death: “Indolence and levity and unfaithfulness are sins that beset me; and his living presence was a rebuke to all…

Merry Christmas (One More Time)

I have printed this article, written by Reuel Lemmons and published in the Firm Foundation several decades ago, more than once at this Sunday closest to Christmas Day. But seeing as how we did not print a bulletin last year, and we continue to have new faces in our number, I thought it good to repeat it yet again. This editorial powerfully addresses the mixed feelings some of us have about the Christmas season, and it does so in such…

Why Arguments About Christmas Are Counterproductive

I know that several of us have mixed emotions about Christmas. Many of us probably heard lessons— lectures, really—at this time of year when we were growing up to the effect that Jesus was not born on December 25th. That’s true. But what a terrible message to leave in people’s hearts at a time when they are thinking about Christ! The important thing is that, whenever he came, he came; that has made all the difference. The following article from…

O Come, O Come, Emmanuel

Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign. Behold, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. – Isaiah 7:14 This is one of the oldest hymns that is in current use if we trace it all the way to its roots. To do that, we need to go back to at least the 8th century, when we have our first certain references to it in the monasteries. But some scholars have discerned…

When Life is in the Pits

By the waters of Babylon, there we sat down and wept, when we remembered Zion. On the willows there we hung up our lyres. For there our captors required of us songs, and our tormentors, mirth, saying, “Sing us one of the songs of Zion!” How shall we sing the Lord’s song in a foreign land? – Psalm 137:1-3 As I write this article, we are busy making Thanksgiving preparations; by the time you read it on Sunday morning, the…

The Gracious Gifts of the Most High God

The origins of Thanksgiving in the United States, of course, go back to the 1621 celebration in Plymouth Colony. There is a lot we get wrong about that story, and it did not lead to an immediate annual observance. But it stood in a great tradition of harvest festivals common to Great Britain and other European countries who colonized the New World: both the Spanish and French conducted thanksgivings in the 16th century, and English settlers in Jamestown held a…

God is Real

What would you say if someone asked you to argue for the existence of God? There are a number of classical arguments that have been worked out and debated by philosophers and theologians over the centuries: the cosmological argument, that every finite, contingent thing must have a cause, so there must be an infinite, necessary Uncaused Cause; the teleological argument, that the universe shows evidence of design, so there must be a Designer; the ontological argument of Anselm, that God…

A Great Church?

On the first Sunday in November of 2017—exactly 4 years ago, in other words—Abbey and I came here to Liberty to try out for the open preaching position. It is hard to believe that much time has passed in many ways. In the interim, many things have changed for us personally and for the congregation. Some who were here that morning are unfortunately no longer with us; some of you reading this now were not here then. Not long after…

All Saints’ Day

Today is Halloween. In the US and many other countries, we associate that with a number of traditions: dressing up in costumes, going from house to house trick-or-treating, terrifying, uncanny things like ghosts and vampires. Some have accordingly objected to celebrating Halloween as wicked. Where did this holiday come from, anyway? To answer that, we need to understand that the day after is a holiday too: All Saints’ Day. This is a day set aside in the Roman Catholic Church…