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How People Change

There is a scene that takes place toward the end, the very end of The Lord of the Rings trilogy, towards the very end of the third book, The Return of the King. And it’s during this great battle and there is this unlikely warrior, a girl named Eowyn, who sneaks onto the battlefield. And as she is there, she finds her king, the King of Rohan, and he’s wounded on...

Affliction in Verse

Now if you would take a Bible and turn with me to the book of Job as we continue our overview of the teaching of the book of Job. You remember the situation. Job is suffering terribly and his three friends, Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar, have showed up and after seven days of sitting in silence, they've begun to offer their point of view, their perspective, to try...

One of the more memorable graduation speeches from recent years was given by David McCullough Jr. to the Wellesley High School graduating class of 2012. Wellesley is a prestigious high school in New England. But McCullough told the graduating class that day these words. He said, "Contrary to what your U-9 soccer trophies suggest, what your glowing seventh-grade report card said, despite every assurance of Barney the dinosaur...

Entering the Crucible of Unbelief

And so first, what is happening here? What is the story of John chapter 20? Let’s look together at the text; a couple of things. Beginning in chapter 20, Jesus, we see this, He’s been crucified, buried. We see at the beginning of chapter 20, resurrected. We see then that He’s appeared to His disciples and His friends. And sometime in the week following Jesus’ resurrection, this conversation...

Entering the Crucible of Unbelief

A few months ago I finished a Wendell Berry novel that split me open. The book is entitled, Remembering, and in it, Berry chronicles the life of a farmer named Andy Catlett. Andy Catlett lives and farms in Port William, Kentucky with his wife and his children and his parents. And one October at daybreak, as harvest was almost over, the field was almost finished, Andy was trying to...

Entering the Crucible of Unbelief

C. S. Lewis, in his book, The Great Divorce, tells the story of a group of people who are standing between heaven and hell. And towards the end of the book, Lewis describes a man who is limping and he has a lizard on his shoulder. And the lizard’s words captivate the man, and yet they also leave him weak, chained to a life he hates. And the lizard...

I need to set just a little bit of a stage here as we’re looking into this thought-provoking, relatively familiar passage for many of us. It’s a somewhat amusing section of Scripture in some ways as well. This comes in the last days of our Lord’s ministry on earth. You see in verse 1, Jesus knew that His hour had come to depart out of the world and...

Rewire

Paul has been talking about the nature and the boundary, the limits, of Christian freedom. The Corinthians had written to him asking for advice about a particular problem that was especially pressing in the culture in which they lived. Food, meat was often sold in the market as surplus to requirements after having first been used in the sacrifices of the pagan temples in the city of Corinth. And so...

Let’s look briefly at Ahab’s faith because it does help us understand more clearly Obadiah’s faith. It provides a backdrop or a foil for it. Ahab’s faith is simple to understand. It’s faith in Ahab. It’s faith in Ahab. Ahab has been faced with the man of God speaking the Word of God, “There’s no more rain until I say,” and he knows why – because he has...

The Gospel for the Rest of Us

Chuck Swindoll tells the story of a young man in Long Beach, California who decided to go by his favorite fried chicken place one day – never a bad idea! – to get some lunch for him and his date and he got the bag and he went out to meet his date and he opened up the bag and it turned out that the employee who was...

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