All Posts (Page 6)

All Posts (Page 6)

Mother Teresa Leona

James, the youth: If a person shows all the outward signs of being a Christian, should we assume the person is truly a Christian? The elderly but wiser Mr. Brockton: Not at all. The evidence for being a Christian will undoubtedly be seen in every true Christian, but the appearance of the evidence may deceive you. You must start at the starting place in your observations and be careful not to mistake the effect for the means. James: But suppose…

If God is Good, Why Do So Many Bad Things Happen?

My visit to the small apartment of an Asian couple in the Chicago suburbs was disturbing. Here was a man who had innocently gone to work one day, but was caught in the crossfire of a gunfight. He was paralyzed from the neck down. What do you say to a man like that? “If God is all-powerful and is also good, why is there pain in the world?” The question is among the most difficult to answer, especially when we…

Our Plan for Handling Church Finances

The elders of Christ Fellowship spent several weeks studying the subject of church finances. Our desire was to honor God by following the leadership of the Head of the Church, Jesus Christ. We focused on numerous passages of Scripture in an attempt to properly understand more of what the Bible teaches on this subject. While we did not conclude that we had been disobedient to God in the way we had handled church finances previously, our study did provide us…

No Sin

How blind to say,”No sin”Or think it soAs if he died for sinless menOr cleanses just the clean. The sick man sees a doctor,The sinful sees a Savior. And he is both. And I was both. ______________ Copyright © Jim Elliff 2017

Starting Churches with No Money

I don’t want to presume that I know how you ought to start a church, but I’m increasingly less than satisfied with the kind of approach to church starting that takes loads of start-up money. Often U.S. church planters spend a year or two raising funds for the launch of their new church. Here are the reasons I think this is often (though not always) unwise. I don’t want to labor to prove my points, as if there is no…

The Law is Not My Tutor

“But before faith came, we were kept in custody under the Law, being shut up to the faith which was later to be revealed. Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor” (Gal 3:23-25) The Mosaic Law is not my tutor to bring me to faith in Christ, for two reasons: 1. I am Gentile by…

He’ll Stand

The following words by Paul the Apostle make for tangible peace between sincerely conscientious Christians who differ in convictions: “Who are you to judge the servant of another? To his own master he stands or falls; and he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand” (Romans 14:4). A true believer will ultimately stand justified before God, regardless of differences in those matters about which God has chosen to give no definitive command. In such areas we…

The Word Was In the World: Doing What?

He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him.” Jn 1:10 We know that the “Word was made flesh and dwelt among us” (v 14), and that He “explained” the Father (v 18), but what was the Son doing before all this? I believe, properly understood, that John 1 teaches that He was in the world. He was, in fact, God (“the Word was God,” v 1), so He was…

On Guard Against Greed: Your Letter From Jim

Greed is an aggravation. It shows up everywhere. It is a mother sin, birthing mischievous and malevolent children. When Paul said that “our sins are common to man,” perhaps many of us should admit that greed is more common in us than most other sins. Greed’s reign commenced in the garden of Eden, where Adam and Eve were not content with perfection and unfiltered fellowship with God (imagine the weight of that idea), but ate the forbidden fruit from a…

Immediate Signs and Lasting Fruit in Visitations of God: Responses

Listen to Jesus . . . In the parable of the Sower (Mt 13), the soils represent the varied human hearts. They vary as to whether or not the message of Christ is received in such a way that it will produce fruit. What good is soil that will not produce fruit? Every farmer knows this dilemma. Good seed on bad soil isn’t useful for his purposes. Sometimes the right message of the gospel is not able to penetrate the…

How the Message Spreads

In this last week we have seen the amazing way that God’s Spirit spreads his truth to others. In the first chapter of Thessalonians we see this dramatically. The Gospel spreads through people of heartfelt devotion to Christ and understanding who speak it in the power of the Spirit and with sincere conviction. I think we will see coming out of this initial stirring men of truth preaching the gospel. It has been charateristically so that God raises up bold…

Truth and Experience: Asbury

It has been and will always be true that, regardless of experience and the nearness of God which is perceived, returning quickly, decisively and repeatedly to the truth found only in the Bible is the right thing in order to walk firmly in Christ, providing the tracks to interpret experience and guide us. In the experience that Asbury students and faculty are going through now, there is the truth of the gospel for years in some, if not many of…