God’s Holy Violence

So this last Sunday I continued my sermon series through the Gospel of Luke, coming to Luke 19:28-48, which includes the triumphal entry, Christ weeping over Jerusalem, and the cleansing of the temple. In the course of that message, I said this: Christians really must get their minds and hearts around the fact that the…

Beauty, Lust, and Nothing

Lust is hunger for nothing. Lust is the primeval, fallen instinct and demand for nothingness, nihil. Lust or covetousness is idolatry, the worship of idols. And idols are literally, nothing (1 Cor. 8:4). Lust is the worship of nothingness, blankness, emptiness, the dark, the formless, the void. Why? Why do we desire nothingness? Because we…

Fresh Supplies of Grace

Temptations work for good, as they engage the strength of Christ. Christ is our Friend, and when we are tempted, He sets all His power working for us. ‘For in that he himself hath suffered, being tempted, he is able to succor them that are tempted’ (Heb. 2:18). If a poor soul was to fight…

Addiction is Idolatry

Addiction to pain medication, addiction to spending money, addiction to food, addiction to alcohol, addiction to pornography/masturbation, addiction to gambling, addiction to video games, addiction to exercise, addiction to sex, addiction to vanity, addiction to cutting and self-harm — whatever the addiction — addiction is idolatry. This is not meant as an emotionless slam on…

Elders as Fathers

“I do not write these things to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children. For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel. I urge you, then, be imitators of me. That is why I…

Salt for the Feast: The Gift of Shame

Luke XLIX: Lk. 14:1-34 Introduction What’s the most embarrassing thing that’s ever happened to you? What’s the most shameful thing you’ve ever thought or said or done? This passage is about the gift of shame. Summary of the Text: Jesus dines with a ruler of the Pharisees on a Sabbath and heals a man with…

Relativism with Bible Verses

One of the things the Church is up against is the external pressure from the unbelieving world to cave on the authority of Scripture. But one of the reasons the world badgers and mocks the Church is because the Church sends signals of insecurity and vulnerability to the world. The Church doesn’t trust her Lord…

Weak Faith Strong Savior

Because the Bible says we must believe and have faith in Christ, it is a periodic temptation of Christians to doubt their faith, to wonder if they believe enough or have enough faith. Perhaps you wonder if you are believing God enough for your parenting. Or perhaps you wonder if you are trusting God enough…

Loving Brothers in Error Part 2

I want to follow up my last post on this topic with two somewhat different points, heading in somewhat different directions, but which are related to the central principles already laid out. I’ll post part 2 today and then part 3 in a few days. First, I take it for granted that when Paul exhorts…

The Great Israelite Freakout

In Joshua 22, a rather tense scene unfolds when the children of Reuben, Gad, and the half tribe of Mannasah return to their lands on the other side of the Jordan following the completion of the conquest of Canaan. The two and half tribes return to their land and build an altar on the border…