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Faith

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FAITH… We toss around that word so freely and often, while at the same time living so fearful and anxious. I’ve learned a lot about the “definition” a few years back and then even more about a year ago. I like asking the question, “what’s the best translation of the verb form of this noun?” Is “to believe” really the best we have, blah, blah, blah. Call me up of you want to petition Webster to add “faithing” to the dictionary. Ok, on to recent thoughts… I saw a sign outside of a church. You know those signs with (usually…

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The Stockdale Paradox (Part 2)

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Please read The Stockdale Paradox Part 1 first. “Vice Admiral James Bond Stockdale (December 23, 1923 – July 5, 2005) was one of the most highly decorated officers in the history of the United States Navy“ (Wikipedia).  He had a conversation with Jim Collins (author) about his time in a Vietnamese POW camp.  Collins asked who did NOT make it out.  Here is Stockdale’s reply… “Oh, that’s easy, the optimists. Oh, they were the ones who said, ‘We’re going to be out by Christmas.’ And Christmas would come, and Christmas would go. Then they’d say, ‘We’re going to be out…

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The Stockdale Paradox (Part 1)

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There is a few things coming together for this post, so bear with me.  Please track through Revelation 11, 2 Corinthians 4, and [in Part 2] Zechariah 4 Revelation 11 is a picture of the church age from the vantage point of believers.  There are two witnesses given the power of Moses and Elijah (v. 6), but they are clothed in sackcloth (v. 3).  Being clothed in sackcloth represents mourning.  They are eventually killed by the beast from the Abyss, and the nations gloat.  God breathes life into them again, striking fear into the nations, and they go up to…

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Beach Reach ’10 Journal: Andre

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A journal entry from our Spring Break endeavor called Beach Reach in Panama City Beach, FL. We gave free van rides at night and free pancake breakfasts in the mornings. We picked up Andre and three of his friends on Wednesday night. I was driving, Bryan was the Doorman. We were in bumper to bumper traffic, so one of them asked to get out and walk. Andre had been in PCB for Spring Break last year as well. He was ready with four verses of Scripture: three serious and one on the raunchy side from Ezekiel. He wanted to stump…

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Works?

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What part does “works” play in the realm of salvation? That is a thing debated often.  There is a pendulum that swings back and forth throughout the history of the church.  Even looking into scripture sometimes seems to muddy up the waters further. May I explain the problem and offer a solution?  (Solution: brought to you in large part by Jack Cottrell) I will try to do this as simply as I can, though an encyclopedia of explanation could easily be written. Two seemingly contradictory passages are Romans 4:1-8 (written by Paul) and James 2:14-24.  These both reflect on the…

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Joy

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Why don’t we talk about joy more often?  Are we missing something as Christians if we aren’t joyful? We have reconciliation with God,”sweet rest” in Jesus, an intercessor and counselor in the Holy Spirit, the hope of heaven, freedom from our slavery to sin, and on and on. As ministers, have we forgotten to ask the question, “How is your joy in the Lord?”  If the joy is gone doesn’t everything else tank shortly after that?  Paul said, “…and continue with you for your progress and joy in the faith, so that through my being with you again your joy…

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