Anytime a Christian creates distance, whether intentional or not, between themselves and the church, they are in danger. They are in danger of falling away from the church, the family of God, and eventually from the Lord Himself. Some prefer to keep their distance, not get too involved with the work of the church. Instead, they chose to be something between a member and a visitor. They come on Sundays to the worship services, which is good, but have little or no interactions with the church the rest of the week.Continue reading “The Need to be close to the Church.”
As far as New Testament letters go, first and second Timothy and Titus have probably dominated more of my time and study than any other books. To be perfectly honest, I’m not entirely certain why I’ve had such a fascination with these letters. Perhaps it’s because they were written to young preachers struggling to adapt to new towns, churches, and still faithfully deal with the struggles and challenges associated with ministry. To that I can relate. Not that I haven’t loved it with my whole life and heart, but it has been challenging to say the least.Continue reading “An introduction to the letters to Timothy and Titus.”
Most know Paul wrote 1 &2 Thessalonians, but many forget that Timothy and Silas are also named as authors (1 Thess. 1:1; 2 Thess. 1:1).
Something that’s interesting is that most people agree that the letter to the Thessalonians is the oldest letter in the New Testament.Continue reading “Introduction to 1 & 2 Thessalonians.”
Colossians focuses on Jesus as the head of the church and the focus of all things.
Colossae was a small, minor city located about 100 miles inland from Ephesus in what is modern day Turkey. It is located by an important mountain pass and once was a very populated city with a thriving economy. By the time Paul writes to them it had withered, due in part, to the success of neighboring cities like Ephesus and Hierapolis.Continue reading “Introduction to Colossians.”
The city of Philippi had a long and interesting history. It was initially colonized by the people of Thasos around 360 BC. It was renamed “Philippi” by Philip of Macedon in 356 BC and was eventually abandoned in the 1 4th century after the Ottoman conquest.Continue reading “An Introduction to Philippians.”
Father’s Day is here. For most dads, it is just another day in the great and rewarding journey of doing the best we can for our families. Like Mother’s Day, we celebrate this day as an opportunity to honor the contributions dads, all over the world, play in the life of the family. Dad’s should be honored and encouraged every day for the role they play in this life, society, and the church. My grandmother used to say, “Anyone can have a child, but it takes a special man to be a father.” I agree wholeheartedly.Continue reading “A special man.”
Paul first arrived in Ephesus on his second missionary journey (Acts 18). He visited a second time during his third missionary trip (Acts 19) which proved to be a tumultuous time for the church. People were baptized, silversmiths were infuriated, and a riot even broke out. Paul’s relationship with Ephesus was interesting, to say the least.Continue reading “An introduction to Ephesians.”
The book of Galatians is challenging and powerful. Written by the apostle Paul early in his ministry (around 49-50 AD), it reveals one of the first serious doctrinal struggles in the church. The main issue at stake was legalism vs. grace.Continue reading “An introduction to Galatians.”
As we pointed out in our introduction to 1 Corinthians, the Corinthian church would have been challenging. This one gave him the most grief and heartbreak of all the churches he started. You see this culminating in Paul’s admonition in 2 Cor. 13:5, when he said to them, “Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you? – unless indeed you fail to meet the test!” (ESV) Undoubtedly, Paul is beginning to question their salvation and connection to Jesus.Continue reading “An introduction to 2 Corinthians.”