Dealing with Life’s Anxieties

We live in an age of increasing worries and anxieties. Jesus’ words “do not worry” from the Sermon on the Mount are very familiar to us, but what did he actually mean? If we look closely, we’ll see how Jesus provided a detailed and practical lifestyle that will lessen the oppression of worry and anxiety. […]

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For those who grieve

READER RESPONSES toA Chronicle of Grief: Finding Life After Traumatic Loss by Mel Lawrenz “Beautifully written. No platitudes, just hard-won wisdom and truth. It gives hope to those grieving, and help for those walking alongside them.” “I came away from this chronicle of grief with renewed hope and encouragement. I’ve read a lot of books

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The Seduction of Comfort

Paul and Barnabas preached the gospel in that city and won a large number of disciples. Then they returned to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch, strengthening the disciples and encouraging them to remain true to the faith. “We must go through many hardships to enter the kingdom of God,” they said. Acts 14:21-22 In a recent

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Suffering and Proclaiming

Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me…. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. Matthew 24:9, 14 Traian Dorz, a

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And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be

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Sold Out

The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field. When a man found it, he hid it again, and then in his joy went and sold all he had and bought that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value,

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The Power of a Seed

The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and planted in his field. Though it is the smallest of all seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds come and perch in its branches. Matthew 13:31-32 One major

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Soul Soil

But the seed falling on good soil refers to someone who hears the word and understands it. This is the one who produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty, or thirty times what was sown. Matthew 13:23 In gardening and farming, soil cultivation is an intentional practice designed to improve the condition of the soil.

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Ready for Mystery?

The secret of the kingdom of God has been given to you. But to those on the outside everything is said in parables. Mark 4:11 The realm of the mysterious can both fascinate and frustrate people. Depending on your disposition or personality, mysteries can either represent challenges to overcome, or grace and wonder to be

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Your Kingdom Come

Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Matthew 6:10 Reading the morning newspaper can be hazardous to your health. Consider these recent stories from one day: Cyberbulling law being considered. Taliban prisoner exchange fuels debate. France sells Russian warship amidst U.S. protest. Martial law considered for Eastern Ukraine.

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Healing and Faded Bumper Stickers

Since the days of the early church, followers of Christ have been marked by a ministry of healing and proclaiming. One writer summarizes this work as a simple lifestyle of trusting God, traveling light, and healing the sick—which brings us back to the faded bumper sticker: Trust in Jesus. Why doesn’t God heal when thousands pray for healing in Jesus’ name? Are miraculous signs and miracles always associated with the manifestation of the kingdom? Trust in Jesus. These difficult questions deserve more than simplistic answers.

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Words and Deeds That Restore

Throughout his narrative, Matthew portrayed the kingdom of God in varied ways: God’s kingdom is his sovereign rule over all of creation. In Jesus, God’s kingdom has been inaugurated and will one day be consummated. The kingdom of God is mysterious. It begins small and is barely noticed, like a mustard seed in the ground. The kingdom of God belongs to all those who put their faith in Jesus—both Jew and non-Jew. The kingdom of God points to a new creation where sin, disease, and affliction no longer exist.

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