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Lessons from a drill: Power for Spirit-filled living in today’s world

The first house Janet and I purchased years ago in Arlington, Texas needed much work. So my granddad came to help. He became a carpenter after losing his farm in the Depression, then worked until he died at age 99. He built a tool shed, sheet-rocked the garage, redid the kitchen, and transformed our house. […]

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Writing Acts 29 with renewed passion

During the month of September, we are looking at the issue of civility, or more directly, how to live out our Christian faith in an uncivil world. Over the next four weeks, I will be looking at the early Christian movement, the apostolic church, as recorded by Luke in the book of Acts. Today we’ll […]

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Defeating temptation before it becomes sin

We live in a culture that is permeated with sexual messaging. We are immersed in sexual temptation through TV shows, movies, advertisements, and online pornography.  So much of it is laced with underlying messages about “freedom” and “be yourself.” But, nothing could be further from truth. Sin enslaves and takes captive those who succumb.     […]

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Pastoral Papers

What does the Bible say about religious liberty? Discussion Guide

A discussion guide on religious liberty The following discussion guide may be used in a small group setting or for your personal time of devotion. We hope it helps you both better understand the topic and how God might want to use you, in your specific context, to be “salt and light” on this issue. […]

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What’s Wrong With Same-Sex Marriage?

Same-sex marriage may be the most divisive issue in America today. The church cannot be silent on this political and cultural movement. While public opinion is clearly moving away from biblical marriage, God is neither surprised nor defeated. His truth still sets us free (John 8:32). And reality does not change when we redefine it. […]

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The intersection of faith and science: Our culture at the crossroads

Our culture often sees science as having the answers to most of the challenges and needs of our day. Unfortunately, many in our day also see faith as either irrelevant or, sadly, dangerous. So, let’s honestly deal with the intersection of faith and science. First, we’ll lay some groundwork, then we’ll apply what we discover […]

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Pastoral Papers

What does the Bible say about removing statues?

There’s no easy solution to the statues controversy swirling around our culture. A recent poll found that 45 percent of Americans see statues of Confederate war heroes as symbols of Southern pride, while 36 percent view them as symbols of racism. Forty-five percent believe they should not be removed from public property, while 38 percent feel they should […]

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The power of persistent prayer

2020 has been a year like no other in living memory. It started as 1973, with the impeachment proceedings. Then it became 1918 with the coronavirus pandemic. It added 2008 (and maybe 1929) with the recession. Then it added 1968 with racial issues. None of the last three will end any time soon, and we […]

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Memorial Day in a pandemic: Why remembering is so transforming

On August 27, 1776, George Washington addressed his soldiers before the Battle of Long Island. This was the first major battle after America declared her independence. Gen. Washington stated: “The time is now near at hand which must probably determine whether Americans are to be freemen or slaves . . . . The fate of […]

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Mental health for pastors: Three ways Jesus practiced self-care

Darrin Patrick, a megachurch pastor, speaker, and author, has died. According to Seacoast Church, a multi-site megachurch in South Carolina where he was teaching pastor, he died of what appears to be a “self-inflicted gunshot wound.” A longtime friend of Patrick noted that pastors often don’t know what to do when they struggle. They attempt to […]