A Theological Check-Up: Do You Really Believe? Part 8: The Bible


A Practical Way to Love Your (Self-Isolated) Neighbor


What You Need To Understand About Taking Up Your Cross

 And calling the crowd to him with his disciples, he said to them, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.  For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and the gospel’s will save it. For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul? For what can a man give in return for his soul? For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of him will the Son of Man also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.”

Here is Michael Horton’s answer:

Well, the most important thing here as elsewhere is to distinguish the law from the gospel. The law commands, but the gospel gives. We can’t look to the law for our salvation and justification before God. And the gospel doesn’t command; the gospel announces what God has done for us in Christ. But Jesus meant what he said here.

It’s law. It’s a command. We are to take up our cross. But we have to distinguish our cross from his. His cross is gospel; our cross is a command. It’s a law. But Jesus bore the curse of sin and death for us, in our place. We could never bear the brunt of God’s righteous wrath against sin, but Jesus is the spotless lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.

Read more: https://corechristianity.com/resource-library/articles/what-you-need-to-understand-about-taking-up-your-cross

10 Powerful Prayers the Apostle Paul Prayed Over God’s People


Social Distancing Devos: Colossians 1:3-8

During this time of social distancing, use your extra time at home to dive into the word of God. I’m praying these devotions through the book of Colossians will assist as you study and apply Scripture. To listen to the podcast, click the links at the bottom of the article. God bless you all through this unique time.

We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you, since we heard of your faith in Christ Jesus and of the love that you have for all the saints, because of the hope laid up for you in heaven. Of this you have heard before in the word of the truth, the gospel, which has come to you, as indeed in the whole world it is bearing fruit and increasing–as it also does among you, since the day you heard it and understood the grace of God in truth, just as you learned it from Epaphras our beloved fellow servant. He is a faithful minister of Christ on your behalf and has made known to us your love in the Spirit (Col. 1:3-8).

Continue: https://growingingrace.blog/2020/03/24/social-distancing-devos-colossians-13-8/

My Father’s home!

(James Smith, “The Better Land”)

“Do not be troubled. There are many rooms in my Father’s home, and I am going to prepare a place for you. When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with Me where I am!” John 14:1-3

How familiar with Heaven–how well acquainted with that “better land” must Jesus be! He calls it “My Father’s home!” Sweet view of our eternal residence!

Dying is but ‘going home!’ Going home to our Father! Going to our Father’s home!

And shall we fear this? Fear it! Can we do anything other than eagerly desire it? Do we not wish to go home and see our Father? We shall not be strangers there–so many of our Christian friends have gone home before us. And even if some of our loved ones are not there–we could not possibly feel unhappy where JESUS is!

“I am leaving the world,” said Jesus, “and am going to My Father!” Such should be our language in the prospect of death. O that, with child-like simplicity, we could receive into our minds the testimony of God’s Word! O that we could view death and Heaven–just as the Scriptures represent them! Where would our doubts and fears be then? What would become of our reluctance to leave the world then? Then, if we spoke of departed Christian loved ones–we would use similar language to that of Judah in reference to his younger brother Benjamin, “He is this day with our Father!” We would no longer talk of losing friends or relatives. Oh no! we should speak of them as being in our Father’s home, or of being with our Father!

My soul, I charge you in future to look to Heaven, simply as your Father’s home!

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal!” 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

Pete Greig: Love in a time of fear


Romans 8:28 May Be Often-Quoted and Even Misused, But May We Never Grow Tired of Its Precious Truth

Is it possible to overuse a verse of Scripture? Certainly it is easy to misuse a verse, and in the process be robbed of its true riches.

Romans 8:28 is one of the best known verses in the whole Bible: “All things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” Did I say this was one of the “best known” verses of Scripture? Let me revise that statement. It is one of the most often quoted verses of Scripture. Unfortunately, it is all too easy to quote a verse without really knowing it.

Read the rest: https://www.patheos.com/blogs/randyalcorn/2020/03/romans-828-precious-truth/

Covid-19: How Christians Should Respond


Shepherding for Such a Time As This