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Topic: Jesus Christ

Trust God

In Your Trials, Trust God

A cancer diagnosis took me completely by surprise 12 years ago. I was perfectly healthy and had no risk factors. I was processing my questions with a mature Christian friend when she said, “It’s almost a complement, don’t you think?” She was saying that God had allowed this trial and that he knew I would be […]

messiah

Bible Q&A: Is Jesus the Messiah, or the Misleader of Millions?

Question: In the Old Testament the devil already exists, and God says that he will send others to test his faith. This person will be of good spirits and have the ability to perform miracles to stray the weak-minded. In the New Testament, Jesus arrives, a man who has the ability […]

bread of life

Be Nourished by the Bread of Life

About four years ago, I experienced my first full-blown panic attack. Those experiences accumulated, and I grew to have increasing difficulty with leaving my home. I remember willfully dumping myself into the passenger seat to be driven to my parents’ nearby home—only to feel an urgent pull two minutes later […]

marriage

Five Ways Jesus Transformed My Marriage

“I have never been more mean in my life since being married,” I said to him. These words were not spewed in the midst of an argument or disagreement; rather, my husband and I were enjoying time together. I had been spending extra time in the Word seeking the Lord’s […]

daughter

An Open Letter to My Daughter on Mother’s Day

To my youngest daughter, for Mother’s Day, Have I ever told you that I consider Mother’s Day a celebration of you more than me? When your older sister was made for heaven, and not for earth—taken there, graciously, before she was even born—I knew how dear to me were all […]

cross

The Beauty of the Cross

The two disciples walk slowly. Their journey today is not long, but their hearts are heavy with sorrow and confusion. They were sure that Jesus would be the Messiah, the one to redeem Israel, the one who would bring restoration and peace to the world, so that all nations would […]

counterfeit

Three Counterfeit Christs to Reject

Charlie Munger, Vice Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, the famous investment firm headed by Warren Buffett, is known for the following story about physicist Max Planck: “I frequently tell the apocryphal story about how Max Planck, after he won the Nobel Prize, went around Germany giving a same standard lecture on […]

stronger

Jesus Is Stronger Than Your Fear

Hi. My name is Sophie. I like to pretend emotions don’t exist. Two weeks ago my days were filled with one challenge after another, and by Friday night I could feel myself going into an emotional lock-down, attempting to bury every feeling in a Fort Knox-type armory with hopes that […]

belonging to the church

Three Challenges of Belonging to the Church

The Church is the body of Christ. This idea is found all over the Pauline epistles (1 Corinthians 12:27; Ephesians 1:22-23, 4:12; Colossians 1:18,24), and is one of the clearest ways to refer to all true believers in Christ without specifying distinctions regarding doctrine, practice, or denomination. The term is […]

defense against sin

The Difference Between Jesus and the Law

Video Notes: Here is the difference between Jesus and the law: The law tells you what to do, but it can’t give you the power to do it. Jesus tells you what to do, and he gives you the power to do it. That is where strength, hope, and faith […]

bible teachers

Four Ways Bible Teachers Can Reflect Christ

I discovered teaching by accident. When I was invited to teach an economics course through the bank where I worked, I found I loved it, and I’ve been hooked ever since. So when the opportunity came to leave financial services and become a full-time professor, I grabbed it. I’ve been […]

servant

The Heart of a Servant

In the restaurant business, there’s a saying: The waiter/waitress is a server, not a servant. The concept of servanthood is incredibly distasteful in our culture. America is (supposedly) a nation where no one is inherently better than anyone else. To us, being someone’s servant means you think of yourself as […]

expect less

Hope More, Expect Less

What do you expect in the near future? In Chicago, we can expect winter to be cold, snowy and long, but we can also expect a warm summer and a beautiful fall. (Spring is non-existent.) I expect to attend two family weddings this summer, which I expect will be great fun, […]

fight fear

Fight Fear with Faith

It’s not easy to be a Christian today. It never has been. But is it getting harder? In observing the times, there appears to be an increasing tension between those of the Christian faith and those who want to smother any expression of that faith. However, it’s absolutely crucial in this […]

God heals

The God Who Heals

She trails behind the crowd, uncertain if she should approach. The mass of people surrounding him overwhelms her; she can’t see what he’s doing, where he’s going, let alone hear him speak. She’d heard the reports about Jesus, amazing reports. Of healing, demon-expulsion, miracles. And Lord, did she need a […]

opposition

Six Ways Jesus Faced Opposition

I opened God’s Word with a heavy heart, feeling the burden of opposition. A friend had recently attacked my character due to a difference of ethical beliefs. Stunned and hurt by this, I quickly recognized my unpreparedness in facing this attack. Thankfully, the Holy Spirit prompted me to seek the […]

Jesus is God

Bible Q&A: Where Does the Bible Say That Jesus Is God?

Question: Apart from the statement in the Athanasian Creed that says “the Son is God,” is there any evidence in the Bible that Jesus claimed to be the Son of God or that he is the Son of God? Answer: This is Pastor Tim. While I was in school (seminary), I […]

gospel

One Way to Make a Difference for the Gospel Today

“Wherever people live, whatever media they have access to, we want the gospel to be heard.” (Pastor Colin) Unlocking the Bible is a listener-supported media ministry; every ONE of your gifts makes a difference! With 2017 right around the corner and many opportunities ahead of us for people to hear […]

Hostile World

Christ Came into a Hostile World

If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. (John 15:18) A world of hostility toward truth, a world infatuated with sin, a world full of broken people who want to rule themselves—Jesus was born into this world. And if Jesus was received in […]

minor prophets

Why Modern-Day Christians Need the Minor Prophets

For some reason, many Christians today are scared of the Minor Prophets. Maybe it’s the complex prophecies, or the chaotic violence, or perhaps the puzzling historical context. Whatever it is, we have a cultural tendency to camp in the cozy familiarity of the Psalms and the Gospels—and leave the doom-and-gloom […]

mundane matters to Jesus

Your Mundane Matters to Jesus

How can the life of Jesus encourage a young mom who changes diapers? As a stay-at-home mother of four, my days are full of mundane tasks—endless cycles of preparation and cleanup for everything from dinner to laundry. Yes, there are tender moments that make it all worthwhile. But it’s easy […]

Jesus loves

Three Kinds of People Jesus Loves

I like to love people who are easy to love. I prefer to show love in ways where I can control what others think about me. Sometimes I wish to “tell it like it is” in the name of love, when really I’m being hurtful and unwise. Jesus, however, blows […]

God's love

Trust God’s Love Even When He’s Silent

As I embarked on my two-and-a-half hour drive to undergo another treatment for Lyme disease, I was struck by the rare silence around me. There were no little children calling my name, no fights to break up, no one asking for something to eat, and no screaming or crying to […]

jesus is good

Remind Yourself That Jesus Is Good

Of course Jesus is good righteous, good perfect, good sinless. He’s good sovereign, good Lord, good holy. We know that he is upright and blameless in everything. That goes along with being God. But did you know that he is also good kind? Good compassionate, good caring? More often than […]

great leader

Two Qualities That Make a Great Leader

Schools are soon in session and fall small groups are preparing to launch. In classrooms across the country, people will step into leadership roles—some for the first time, others having served so many times they’ve lost count. You may not be a school teacher or a Bible study leader, but […]

satan

Bible Q&A: Who Really Has the Authority on Earth, God or Satan?

Question: In Bible study the other day, we were studying Luke chapter four. Satan tempts Jesus in the wilderness for 40 days. Satan says to Jesus, “Bow down and worship me, and I can give you all this.” I know he is the father of lies, so was that a lie? Could […]

How to Move from Duty to Delight

But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way of the written code. (Romans 7:6) There is a diminished version of Christianity that is often found […]

miracles

Bible Q&A: Can Miracles Like the Resurrection Happen Today?

Question:  I have been kind of questioning the Bible. I read every day and study it. I have been thinking lately that I don’t think any of the stuff in the Bible could happen today, like dead people coming back to life, a virgin having a baby, one man killing 6,000 […]

Freedom

How to Use Your Freedom

“Freedom” means that you have the ability to do something different. When Henry Ford rolled his cars off the production lines in 1909, he declared, “You can have any color you want, as long as it’s black.” That was not freedom. I have a friend who says that he was […]

just as I am

Just As I Am

I struggle with the desire to impress people. I want to be the great musician, the great theologian, the great scholar. I want to say the thing that will unify the Church. I want a platform that will enable me to reach millions of people all around the globe. And […]

look at Christ

Why You Need to Look at Christ to Live

Death consumed the camp ground. Once again, the bareness and dryness of the wilderness led the people to cry out against Moses and against God. And, once again, God’s judgment came down to the people in a plague. This time, it was through the venomous death of serpents. The poison […]

the resurrection

Why the Resurrection Is More Than You May Think It Is

But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep. For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive. But […]

resurrection Jesus Easter

Six Realities of the Resurrection

With the celebration of Easter comes a magnificent reality for the Christian. This is the glorious power of the resurrection – the historical reality that Jesus Christ rose from the dead. As Christians, we believe that God has spoken to us through his Word. We believe his Word is true. […]

Dealing with Rejection through the Gospel

Rejection is part of the business of this world. It comes in an endless variety of forms—not getting the job, a parent whose approval always seems to be just out of reach, a parent who decided not to be your parent after all, a spouse who comes home one day […]

all loves excelling

All Loves Excelling

Do you believe in love at first sight? Charles Wesley did. Wesley, the prolific hymn writer and itinerant evangelist, met the love of his life on August 28, 1747. Sarah “Sally” Gwynne, was the twenty-one-year-old daughter of his good friend, Marmaduke Gwynne. Wesley later admitted to Sally in a letter […]

The Most Important Question in the Bible

It was my first trip to Israel, and our itinerary was full of places that before the trip were, to me, only names on the pages of Scripture. I was excited because this journey held the assurance that we would learn much, see much, and feel much over the course […]

merry Christmas

Three Ways to Respond to Jesus This Christmas

And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear […]

it's a wonderful life

It’s a Wonderful Life

We all know the scene from It’s a Wonderful Life. George Bailey is told by his guardian angel, Clarence, that he had gotten his wish: George had never been born. The chaotic, selfish, sinful tendencies of the town are amplified as a bewildered George stumbles through Pottersville, panicked and heartbroken that […]

fullness of Christ

Drained? Receive the Fullness of Christ

Christmas can leave a good number of people feeling more empty than full. And not only Christmas but many aspects of life. Parenting children. Budgeting monthly finances. Maintaining a healthy, vibrant marriage. Making appointments on time. Meeting the boss’ expectations. Running errands within a packed schedule. Caring for family and […]

Announcing a Royal Baby

The queue wrapped around the palace. Young and old, people stood all day for news of the royal baby. Prince William and his bride, Kate, had just given birth to the next heir to the British throne, and the throngs were breathless as they waited to welcome the new prince […]

How to Overcome Your Fears

A Christian is a person who submits his or her whole life to the lordship of Jesus Christ. This is the polar opposite of the great movements of our time, both within our own culture and around the world. What are the great things in the Bible that God does […]

Lessons from Little-Known Women of the Bible: Anna

It’s almost Thanksgiving, a day when we will give thanks around a table overflowing with turkey, mashed potatoes, cranberries, and other goodies. No gifts. No hype. No countdown, unless you’re the one hosting a large crowd for the day, and even that is a joy. It’s a bit distressing to wake up the day after Thanksgiving, with memories […]

the world

Making Sense of the Newspaper and the World

If this is God’s world, how can it be filled with pain and suffering on such a massive scale? How can we connect the words of the angels about “peace on earth” with the reality of conflict and war? At the inauguration of his public ministry, Jesus announced that he […]

The Image of the Invisible God

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. (Colossians 1:15) Facial recognition software has come a long way since it was first developed in the 1960s. In the early days, the computer was slow to match a person of interest to a photograph because it […]

Fear Is Not the Final Word

“Hail to Dorothy, the Wicked Witch is dead!” With a simple bucket of water Dorothy slew the dreaded Witch, and it didn’t come a moment too soon. My six-year-old heart was about to beat out of my chest. But thanks to the strategically located bucket, disaster was evaded – that […]

The Goat of Your Guilt Is Gone

Sometimes I need a goat. Not just any goat. A scapegoat — like the one described in Leviticus 16. On Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, Israel’s high priest, Aaron, brought two goats into the tabernacle courtyard and presented them to the Lord at the entrance of the tabernacle (v7). […]

On Sunroofs and Self-Denial

Jesus did not demand his rights but willingly set his face to Calvary, for your sake and for mine. Oh, how I wish I would respond that way to life’s circumstances – especially the trivial ones that pale in comparison to such a weight of glory as bearing sin on […]

I Would Be Like Jesus

In 1991, Gatorade ran its first “Be Like Mike” commercial. At that time, Michael Jordan was the most recognizable athlete in the world. Sports announcers could not say enough about the magic he created on the basketball court. And kids worldwide dreamed of becoming the next Michael Jordan. The commercial […]

Jesus Christ

Who Then Is This Jesus Christ?

Jesus Christ, the Son of God. This is the primary message relayed throughout the Gospel of Mark: Jesus is one with the Father, God in the flesh, full of power and authority over nature, demons, disease, and even death. For many believers who have put their faith in Christ, Jesus’ […]

freedom in Christ

The Glorious Privilege of Freedom in Christ

There’s no such thing as freedom — at least not in the sense that we can do whatever we please without restraint or consequence. That’s been Satan’s lie since the Garden of Eden: “Sure, Eve, you can eat the forbidden fruit. Then you can do whatever you want to do […]

finding peace

Finding Peace in a World of Turmoil

Imagine a state of perfect peace. What do you picture? For me, I imagine retreating alone to the ocean, looking out into the vastness, beauty, and power of its waters. The air is comfortable with a warm and gentle breeze with no distractions other than the chatter of seagulls and the […]

Jesus

Are You Rightly Understanding Jesus?

My son-in-law is from Brazil, therefore English is his second language, and he doesn’t always understand our idioms. At a family birthday party recently, a family member said to him, speaking of his one-year-old son who had not managed a nap that day, “Aw, he’s pooped.” “Twice today,” was the […]

d-day invasion

The D-Day Invasion, World War II, and the Resurrection

June 6, 1944. The Nazis had overrun Europe and were threatening to conquer England. They seemed unstoppable, with a war machine producing unlimited tanks and planes and apparently unbeatable technology. But the Normandy landings turned the tide of the war, providing a beachhead for the Allied advance to Berlin, where […]

lion and the lamb

The Lion and the Lamb, Jesus Christ

What’s the most frequently used name for Jesus in the Book of Revelation? Is it the Lion of Judah? After all, the lion symbolizes royalty—power, dominion, strength. And that’s the theme of “the revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place” […]

most powerful people in the world

The Most Powerful People in the World

For the second straight year, Russian president Vladimir Putin was named the most powerful person in the world. Each year, Forbes Magazine produces a list of the world’s most powerful people, and the 2014 list shows the top five people to be: Vladimir Putin, President of Russia Barack Obama, President […]