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Don’t Miss it!

August 10, 2016 — Leave a comment

In 1 Chronicles 16, King David brings the Ark of the Covenantmountainsclouds back to Jerusalem. If you remember, during the time of King Saul the Ark had been stolen and misused. But King David recaptures the Ark and brings it back to Jerusalem and plans a huge worship service. 1 Chronicles 16:8-36 recount the songs of praise and prayers during the worship service.

In verses 25-29 the attributes of God are magnified. As you read (pray) through these verses look for specific attributes of God. I think too often we miss looking at the Scriptures this way. We can get caught up in the narrative and miss seeing who God really is and how we should worship Him. These attributes have an impact on our daily lives. Here are a few that I found.

25 For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised,
and he is to be feared above all gods.
26 For all the gods of the peoples are worthless idols,
but the Lord made the heavens.
27 Splendor and majesty are before him;
strength and joy are in his place.

28 Ascribe to the Lord, O families of the peoples,
ascribe to the Lord glory and strength!
29 Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name;
bring an offering and come before him!
Worship the Lord in the splendor of holiness;  (1 Chronicles 16:25-29)

great, above all gods, maker of the heavens, majestic, strong, joyful, glorious, holy, beautiful, eternal, compassionate, humble, a reviver of spirits and hearts

And if you keep reading (praying) to the end of the worship service (v.35-36) you will see that it ultimately points us to Jesus, who is our salvation. God alone is worthy of our worship and praise. It is good to get to know His attributes and His characteristics because this creates more intimacy in our relationship with Him. It also strengthens and encourages our faith in the One whom He sent to die for us, be raised from the dead and is now seated at His right hand, ruling over all creation.

All for Jesus,


From guest Blogger, Paul David Tripp

The following was taken without permission from Tripp’s book, Whiter than Snow; Meditations on Sin and Mercy.  I highly recommend this to purchase.  My wife Julie has been reading this book in her devotional time and thought it would interest me.  It obviously did and so I am passing it on to you.

“Then I will teach transgressors your ways, and sinners will return to you.”  Psalm 51:13

   Do you know that God has called you to be a teacher? You say, “Come on, Paul, you’ve got to be kidding! I’ve never been to a seminary. I freeze up whenever I have to say something in front of a crowd. I don’t feel that I’m as biblically literate as I should be. I don’t think God really intends me to be one of his instructors.”

   Let me explain what I’m talking about. It’s true that God sets apart a certain people for formal teaching ministry in the church. He gives them the gifts and grace necessary to do the thing he’s called them to do. But the formal ministry of the Word in the body of Christ is only one aspect of the church’s teaching ministry. Paul says, in Colossians 3:16, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom.” It’s clear here that he’s talking about the myriad of everyday-life ministry opportunities that God will give every one of his children.  According to Paul, you have been called to teach. And if you want to understand what that means, you need to understand that there’s no real separation between life and ministry. Rather, the Bible teaches that every dimension of human life is, at the very same time, a forum for ministry.

   This is where David comes in. He says, in Psalm 51, “Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit. Then I will teach transgressors your ways.” David is reminding us that what qualifies us to teach in the personal ministry context of daily life is the grace that we have received in our own moments of need.  This teaching isn’t about laying out a comprehensive theology of grace. Most of us wouldn’t be qualified to do that. No, what it’s actually about is realizing that my story of God having rescued me by his grace is a tool that God intends to use in the lives of others. As I teach others, by being willing to share my own story, I am actually being a tool of transforming grace in their lives. In this kind of one-on-one, informal ministry, I’m not teaching the person about grace.  No, I’m sharing my experience of grace. People learn, not because I’ve opened the dictionary of grace, but because I’ve shown them the video of grace in operation.

   So, are you a good steward of your story of grace? Have you thought about how to tell your story in a way that puts God and his grace in center stage? Have you looked around and considered who’s living with or near you who could benefit from your story of grace? Where have you tended not to let your gratitude shine as brightly as it should? Where have you been unwilling to talk honestly about how much you were (and continue to be) a person in need of rescue?

   So, it’s true; you have been called to teach.  Maybe not as a pastor, small group leader, Sunday School teacher, or foreign missionary. But you have been called to a daily life of gospel transparency, where you’re ready, willing and waiting to share your gratitude for the grace you’ve been given someone who needs it just as much as you.

All for Jesus,


True Hope

February 16, 2009 — Leave a comment

My pastor preached a great sermon yesterday on Ephesians 4:1-6. (Wait, I thought you were the pastor?  I am a pastor, actually I am “the Assistant to the Pastor until Feb 28th when I get officially ordained, then I will be the Assistant Pastor.  So since I am the second guy I only preach about once every 7 weeks or so).  Anyway, at one point during his sermon he started talking about the unified hope that believers have in Christ and in His promises.  I started thinking about hope and what makes our hope, as believers, different than other people’s hope, so for instance like hope that Obama will change our country for the better (which I am highly skeptical about, since one of his first acts as President was to repeal a funding ban on abortions, so right now, thanks to Obama, more and more babies are being killed).

So how is our hope as Christians different than other people’s hope?  Our hope is a Biblical hope.  Hope is the certainty of belief in something we cannot see and has not happened yet.  But where does the certainty come from?  The Christian’s certainty of hope comes from the Bible which displays the integrity and character of God.  Therefore, our hope is based on God’s character.  When God promises to do something He delivers.  History has shown it through the prophets.  If you are interested just read Psalm 22, written by King David about a thousand years before Christ was crucified, then go and read one of the gospel accounts of the crucifixion, like Matthew 27.  Look at how many prophesies are fulfilled just between these two passages alone.  God fulfilled His promise to redeem His people from their sins through the death of Christ.  And there are hundreds of other prophesies and promises throughout the Old Testament that are fulfilled in the New Testament.

Think about it this way…God does not live within the limits of time because He is an eternal Spirit.  We are limited by time and therefore cannot see what will happen in the future.  So our hope in human beings is extremely flawed.  It’s like saying I hope I win the lottery.  There is such a miniscule chance that it will actually happen.  But with God, our hope is secure.  Look at what Numbers 23:19 says, “God is not a man that He should lie, or the son of man, that He should change His mind. Has He said, and will He not do it? Or has He spoken, and will He not fulfill it?”  God does what He says He will do.  And this is not just because God can see into the future, He is already in the future.  Remember, He is not bound by time. But God providentially causes things to happen according to His plan.  He does not react to human situations, He already knows what will happen, God is never surprised.  God has made us certain promises in the Bible and He will providentially deliver those promises, He has a proven track record, so far He’s been 100% in fulfilling what He says He will do.  We can be certain that our hope is not in vain.