Lately I have been doing some introspection and asking myself, “Nickolas, if it really comes down to it, are you a merciful person?” Now most of us would probably answer, “Yeah, I think I’m merciful. Well . . . at least I do the best I can; I sympathize with those who suffer. If someone is feeling some type of pain, I feel sad for them, and I try to help them. I do my best to assist my neighbors in need. When people hurt me, I forgive them and don’t hold a grudge.”
Is there anyone in America who is not somewhat familiar with the ten commandments? I suppose such a person would be hard to find. Exodus 20 reveals those commands, the third of which says, "'You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not leave him unpunished who takes His name in vain.'"
The common application is that we don't curse saying G.. D... or use use His name--God or Jesus or Jesus Christ--to express angry or negative emotions or even to… Continue
Knowing that Gary and I have been out of the institutional church nearly five years, it isn’t uncommon for people to ask us, “Why did you leave” and “What is it that you believe you are being led to?” I hope that this and next week’s article will succinctly answer those questions for others who may be wondering.
You’ve heard me share the statistics before that at least one million people are leaving the institutional church every year. According to the surveys, they… Continue
I have told you many times that my goal with these messages is to stimulate you to draw closer to the Lord. I want each of us to develop a hunger, a thirst for His presence. Now, to go along with that, I should tell you one of my simple beliefs is that if a Christian has an intensity for a holy life—if he desires to give his all to the Lord—there can be only one reason why he fails to enjoy the blessing and freedom promised by the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. That is . . . well,… Continue
Many Pastors these days have a short teaching for the kids. They will call the kids up to the front of the church and have a short message for them. Personally, I love it. Although, I’m sure you have heard the story a pastor who was trying to share a lesson about being prepared and working diligently. So, to illustrate this, he wanted to use squirrels as an example of being prepared.
He started by saying, ”I’m going to describe something, and I want you to raise your hand when you… Continue
Just like you, I see all the nations in turmoil and wonder what in the world is going on. Well, I am one of those who believe that Jesus is coming very soon. Matthew 24:33 says that when we see all the signs coming together, you will know that His return is near, in fact, right at the door. Right before our eyes we can see the Lord gathering the nations together against Israel. Events are moving rapidly toward Armageddon.
I realize the exact day or hour no one knows, not even the… Continue
Our Lord has sworn by an oath to give us a new heart—one that is inclined to obey. The prophet Jeremiah promised, “I will give them a heart to know me, that I am the LORD. They will be my people, and I will be their God, for they will return to me with all their heart” (Jeremiah 24:7). That could be expanded to say, “I will give them a heart to know, to recognize, understand, and be acquainted with Me . . .”
Ezekiel said, “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I… Continue
While I was writing this post, I was watching a program with Joel Osteen. Now I don’t follow Joel’s ministry very closely, not because I opposed to his teachings, I just haven’t been drawn to follow him closely. But tonight’s message corresponded to what was rattling around in my heart to share with you almost exactly. Not actually the teachings, but rather the principle I want to share with you. His talk was entitled, “Your Set Time.” Fortunately I recorded it on my DVR, but I would… Continue
As many of you have discovered, I have many “favorite” books in the Bible. A small group I was leading would chuckle when I would start a new study and say, “Well, here’s another favorite book of mine.” I guess they are all my favorite books . . . however, one of my most favorite books of my favorite books . . . is Hebrews. Now some accredit the book to the Apostle Paul, but many disagree because it doesn’t follow the format or style of any of his other letters.
Psalm 89 is a Psalm of tremendous contrast. It starts out singing the praises of Yahweh . . .
I will sing of the mercy and loving-kindness of the Lord forever; with my mouth will I make known Your faithfulness from generation to generation. For I have said, Mercy and loving-kindness shall be built up forever; Your faithfulness will You establish in the very heavens unchangeable and perpetual. You have said “I have made a covenant with My chosen one, I have sworn to David My…
In our previous “Times of Prayer”, we prayed that in the fullness of time, God will reveal our wisdom to the world. One of the most challenging things is to remain faithful when you are surrounded by trying circumstances, but the Lord never forgets our work and labour of love.
Heb 6:10 For God is not unjust to forget your work and labour of love which you have shown toward His name,
If you have been receiving these Messages for awhile, I hope you have been encouraged and challenged in your faith. I hope you have learned to turn everything over into the Lord’s hands and you are trusting Him. I also hope you believe in his promises to keep you, protect you and cause you to walk uprightly before him. I mean, that is what I am trying to help everyone learn to do—even as I am trying to learn the same things.
We can proudly proclaim, “I believe God’s Word, and if he… Continue
I’m guessing that my son Jake was around 8 years old when my niece, Kelly invited him & me to attend a children’s festival with her. While we had fun going from booth to booth sampling food, collecting free trinkets and learning about available new and improved resources, there was one booth which specifically lingers in my memory even today. This booth was set-up by a local opthmalogist who presented the challenge to identify a variety of animals by only seeing their eyes. The person who… Continue
Elizabeth Elliot used to have a radio program entitled, “Gateway To Joy.” It was an excellent show and I always tried to listen to it. She began each show by saying, “'You are loved with an everlasting love.' That's what the Bible says. 'And underneath are the everlasting arms.'” It is taken from Jeremiah 31:3 and Deuteronomy 33:27 and those passages should bring us great comfort. I say that because those verses are telling us that our Father loves you, He will work to cleanse you, but… Continue