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Month: April 2015

faith

Five Tactics for Viral Faith

This past Sunday, I took the short journey from the northwest suburbs of Chicago to the city proper to enjoy some of the very things that make this town so renowned for its food, flair and fun.  My 10-year-old daughter and I traveled to see a live production based on […]

how to be productive

How to Be Productive According to the Bible

The Bible contains truth that applies to all of life and has a tremendous amount to say about how we live our lives and work our jobs. The Bible’s view of work and productivity is vastly different from our culture’s view: Our culture says work is for self-fulfillment. The Bible […]

Six Dimensions of Hell on the Cross

Artists and poets have speculated over the centuries about hell (consider Dante’s “Inferno”), but the clearest revelation of hell is given at the cross.  The Apostle’s Creed affirms that Christ descended into hell. While this has often been taken to refer to a journey Christ made after his death, the […]

cultural mood

What To Do When the Cultural Mood Gets You Down

Every once in a while I come across a very encouraging but overlooked verse in the Bible. It is usually tucked away in the writings of a rarely preached upon prophet or overshadowed by more impactful theology. I rarely hear it quoted, if at all. No matter, it is a gem. I ran into one of those […]

opinion of Jesus

Your Opinion of Jesus is a Matter of Life and Death

Who do you say Jesus is? When it comes to Jesus Christ, there really is no neutral ground. According to chapters five and six of the Gospel of Mark, there are two opinions a person can have about Jesus, but the two are not created equal. In fact, what we […]

confronting sin

Why Confronting Sin is an Act of Compassion

I made a mistake when I came home from the 7:30 am Easter service. After celebrating the glorious resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ and feeling the joy of that occasion, I ruined it by watching “Face the Nation.” This past weekend’s topic was, as you’d expect, the Religious Freedom […]

Four Ways Our Identity in Christ Changes Our Lives

A couple of years ago, while my family was making a quick trip to a department store, one of our children started losing control. Our little boy began to struggle with a verbal and aggressive outburst as his little mind seemed to turn into someone else. This was nothing new […]

Christ

Is Christ Both Necessary and Sufficient for You?

But as it is, he has appeared once for all at the end of the ages to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. (Hebrews 9:26) In mathematics and philosophy, we show something to be true if it meets criteria that are both necessary and sufficient. For example, for […]

fall wallpaper

Just Hangin’: The Thief on the Cross

Meet Michael Mark, a spoken word artist who is following hard and fast after Jesus Christ. Right in time for Holy Week and along the lines of Heaven, How I Got Here, Michael has written a poem based on the story of the thief on the cross from Luke’s Gospel in chapter 23. […]

how to get to heaven

Episode #7: How to Get to Heaven

What can we learn from the story of the thief about how a person gets to heaven? The book is called Heaven, How I Got Here, so what does it tell us about how a person get to heaven? Well I think that the story of the thief on the cross is the […]

Unforgivable Sin

Bible Q&A: Is Holiness Required to Enter Heaven?

Question: Pastor Smith, I heard your message the other evening regarding justification and sanctification, and you used the example of the thief on the cross. At the end of the message you stated that “it is not by living a good Christian life” that you go to heaven. That is true, […]