Church Blog

Church Blog

Take Dead Aim

Matt Emmons, world class target shooter, had already won gold in the 50m prone event at the 2004 Athens Olympics. Now, going into the final shot of the final round for the overall gold in the 50m 3 rifle positions—kneeling, prone, and standing—he had built an almost insurmountable lead. He did not even need a bullseye to win; if he were merely on target, achieving a score of 8.0 or better, he would take home the gold. Trying to remain…

Supper Time

Thomas Campbell was a Presbyterian minister, born in Ireland and educated in Scotland at the University of Glasgow. When our story begins, he was serving a church in Ireland. But over time, he became dissatisfied with the divisiveness of his denomination: he was an Old Light, Anti-Burgher, Seceder Presbyterian. Each one of those terms reflected a doctrinal split. A reform movement of Independent churches emerging first in Scotland was now sweeping into Ireland. These influenced Thomas to the point he…

Facing Each Day

Because we are unsure of the events of tomorrow, worrying about them will do us little good. Many Christians struggle with worry. Individuals worry about things that happened yesterday, things that may happen tomorrow. In each instance, their anxiety is fruitless. Rather than worrying about past actions or words, we might seek to make right our wrongs and trust God for forgiveness (1 John 1:9). Instead of worrying about the things happening around us currently, we should resolve to control…

Redeemed, How I Love to Proclaim It!

In Acts 3, Peter and John are on their way to the Temple at the hour of prayer when they encounter a lame man, begging alms. Peter famously responds to him, I have no silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk! (Acts 3:6) The man immediately jumps up and begins to walk, heading into the Temple and praising God. A crowd gathers as…

Taste Test

Like most languages, English has a number of idioms we easily understand as native speakers, but sometimes make little sense if you break them down. “The proof is in the pudding” is a good example: can the eater of the pudding in question (whatever that is, anyway) find some sort of evidence related to the character of something else within that pudding? We all know what the expression means, but where in the world did it come from? It helps…

What Your Preacher Wishes You Knew

This article was complied a couple of years ago by Jack Wilkie and published on the Focus Press site. I do not necessarily identify with all of these, but many of them are applicable to me personally; it is good food for thought in general for other ministers you have a relationship with. I have edited and abridged it slightly for redundancy and formatting. All italics below are part of the original article and are not my words. BP The…

When Strength Fails

There are times when all of us are tempted to become discouraged in doing the Lord’s work. Times when you want to smile but you just have to sigh, as the poet said. Times when things just seem to be pressing in on you. But in those moments, Scripture offers us comfort: we discover in its pages men and women of God through the ages who were discouraged too; those who ventured to serve God and confronted the same problems…

Modern Idolatry

I first shared the little list that appears in the latter part of this article with you several years ago. But the start of football season—I have been talking with my brother this week about them putting the pads on, and NFL preseason games have begun—combined with the general malaise that seems to afflict many in our society in the aftermath of COVID, impacting churches among other organizations, has me thinking a good deal about this again lately. So I…

This is a Test

It hardly seems possible, but summer is essentially over—not in the technical meaning with its unrelenting heat, unfortunately, but in the sense of the break in the calendar. Teachers went back to work here this past week, and most students in the area begin this week. Some of you—parents in particular—may be looking forward to that. Maybe even some of the kids are, too. But if you are anything like I was in grade school, you definitely are not. I…

Love Isn’t the Only Thing That Matters, but it Matters Most

We have been studying 1 Corinthians in our Sunday morning Bible class all year. For the last several weeks, we have slowed our pace as we have very deliberately been working our way through chapter 13. Paul’s words there on love are familiar to all of us—familiar to the point that, I think, we sometimes fail to appreciate just how significant they are. But he makes the point that no matter what we might accomplish for the Lord, if we…

A Lesson From Hezekiah

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and…

Jesus Loves Me

For this reason I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and…