In the beginning, things were perfect. Man and God walked together. Then, man chose poorly and severed our connection with the Almighty. Yet the Tree of Life, the perfect garden--God's very presence--is promised for those who turn their hearts back to Him.
The most remarkable and important birth in human history took place over 2,000 years ago: God's Word, His Son, took on flesh and dwelt among us. The wise men who sought out this child-to-be-king demonstrate important principles for us to practice ourselves if we would pursue Jesus with our whole lives.
It's a simple question: do you want to get well? We may have tried to live a certain way for so long that we have lost hope of getting well, or maybe we just get used to our infirmities. Jesus offers true healing--spiritual healing and restoration to God.
"Be holy, for I am holy." What an honorable, albeit daunting, calling! Yet God charges His people to keep themselves pure and unstained from the world. The only way we can answer this calling is with God's help: not only the grace He lavishes upon us, but the perfect example He gives us through His son and the men and women of faith recorded in the scriptures.
Whether it's a first name, nickname, maiden name or surname, the proper names we use convey a sense of identity. They are the shorthand we use to acknowledge and interact with one another. Some wish they could have any name besides the one they own, while others don't want to give up their name for anything. In this episode, we open God's word to examine what He says is important in the names of His children.
Everyone wants to be rich. The question is, what kind of rich? The material wealth of this world will not last, but the God and Creator of the cosmos wants to lavish His riches--spiritual riches--upon us. But, we must prove ourselves faithful stewards of what God entrusts us if we are to receive the riches He has prepared for us.
Jesus instructs us in Matthew 6:33 to seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness. If you goal is spiritual success as God defines it, what can you be doing to ensure you stay on the narrow way that leads to life? We offer three modest suggestions from the word of God.
Through the patriarchs of the Old Testament, God fostered an entire nation of people set apart for devotion to Him. And just as He promised Abraham, one of his offspring would bless the entire world; so now, in Christ, every soul can be grafted in to the spiritual Israel that is the church.
Life can, and often does, change in a moment. We take time for granted, which leads us to take people we spend that time with for granted. We even take God for granted when we are caught up in living our own life. Living for God means living in the present, making the most of every opportunity before us today.
Genesis 2:24-25 outlines pillars of success for marriage: leave the old life, join to a new companion, become one and have no shame in the relationship. As God reveals in Paul's letter to the Ephesians, this relationship unveils the mystery of our relationship to God in Jesus Christ.