Since 1981, when I began preaching in high school, I have preached in many churches from Chiclayo, Peru, to Torrington, Connecticut. I have spoken to large and small congregations with various needs. I have illustrated to some conservative churches the need to be a little more liberal, and to liberal churches, how to be a little more conservative, as we all seek a Christ-like balance.
One Sabbath several years ago, I was preaching in one of the most conservative churches I [...]
I have found that there are some important topics that nobody wants to talk about. I went to all my regular websites and found an entire category suspiciously missing. It goes by several names – temperance, moderation, abstinence, self-control, balance …
Part of my problem, I think, is that a couple of those terms have taken on very specific meanings even though they can be applied in lots of different situations.
Temperance, for example, has come to be used almost exclusively in relation [...]
God’s answer to Habakkuk’s question in Habakkuk 1:17, as recorded in chapter 2, continues in the form of a song that mocks the proud oppressor.
Image © Bill Osborne from GoodSalt.com
No less than five woes (Hab. 2:6, 9, 12, 15, 19) affirm the message that Babylon’s doom is sealed. The punishment on the enemy will be in accordance with the “measure for measure” principle. What the wicked do to their victims will, in the end, be done to them. They will reap what they sow, [...]
My niece Hannah and I, a few years after this story took place.
Several years ago I was flying from Fort Worth Texas to go home to Tulsa, Oklahoma, for the Thanksgiving holiday. It was a short flight and I was on a commuter plane. Upon landing, instead of pulling up to the terminal like the big jets, we were let out on the tarmac. I went up the stairs into the terminal and saw my family staring out the [...]
“The sacrifice of Christ as an atonement for sin is the great truth around which all other truths cluster. In order to be rightly understood and appreciated, every truth in the Word of God, from Genesis to Revelation, must be studied in the light that streams from the cross of Calvary. I present before you the great, grand monument of mercy and regeneration, salvation and redemption—the Son of God uplifted on the cross. This is to be the foundation of [...]
“I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with senses, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use and by some other means to give us knowledge which we can attain by them.”
What is science? What does it take to be a real scientist or to think in a scientific manner? Does science have anything to do with religion or faith? Or, is there a distinct dividing line [...]
Image © Krieg Barrie from GoodSalt.com
Once upon a time, the world happened, possibly with the help of some Higher Being. Finally, men and women came along. They began to worship the Higher Being and to tell and to write down stories about It (the Higher Being). In some of the stories, the Higher Being was called God. One of the stories described how some of the people thought God created the world and all the animals and people in [...]
I remember a tense chat I had with my youngest daughter, who at about five years old became angry over some comment I made during dinner.
Image © Erik Stenbakken from GoodSalt.com
She stalked off, planting herself on the couch with an ugly scowl. I walked over and began to speak to her softly, apologizing for the offense I’d caused, but she stolidly refused to forgive me. I began to speak of God’s forgiveness, reminding her that Jesus had prayed, “Father [...]
“Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” 2 Timothy 2:15
True confession time – I don’t know how to study. I know how to look stuff up and to read things … but I just don’t get the whole concept of “studying” something. Once I’ve read it, I don’t really know what else to do.
Image © Steve Creitz from GoodSalt.com
That’s become kind of a frustration for [...]
I began collecting baseball cards when I was 11, and Topps was the only baseball card company. Soon after that, Donrus and Fleer joined the baseball card-making industry. In order to compete with the unwelcome newbies in the market, Topps started printing on their baseball card packages, “The Real Ones!” Even at 11, I knew Topp’s claim to be the only “real” baseball card company was nothing more than a mind game. Regardless of the company, they were all pictures [...]