What a challenge this must have been for patriotic Philippian citizens who had spilled their blood for the glory of Rome, or who sat at dinner tables with empty chairs where fathers or sons or husbands should be, or who grew up with the pageantry and pride of the national festivals. How might one feel if he had fought valiantly for Rome in the past, but in the present, he must decide, “Shall I serve Caesar or Christ?” Imagine how natural feelings of patriotism, fraternity, and national identity might complicate matters when the local magistrate took notice of the Christian assembly and applied passive or aggressive pressure. If you were a Christian and a Roman citizen of Philippi, you might well feel your allegiance torn in two.
Whatever accomplishments I might have achieved, whatever possessions I might have owned, whatever status I might have attained, even my reputation — those things won’t fit inside my urn. Nor do those things define me in the eyes of God. He is not impressed by the awards hanging on the wood-paneled walls of my paid-off house in this upscale California suburb. Even my new iPhone 12 Max Pro with 128 GB of memory does not raise His eyebrows.
October 2020 PDF October 2020 ePub
Who wants to be known for who they were in their worst moments? A snapshot in time, a moment of weakness, or a careless word can permanently change our view of someone.
INSIDE THE ISSUE: “Overcomers,” John Lee; “Rapture! Really?” John Morris; “A Bad Day,” Wade Stanley.
“Let Brotherly Love Continue,” by Louis Garbi; “Election Year,” by Rick Sparks; “Influence,” by Tom Allen.
Until the last one hundred years in Western Civilization, human history has been shaped, in large measure, by famine, disease, and privation. Covid-19 is a reminder of the stark, brutal, merciless world of our forebears where horrific diseases ravaged entire continents. It is more than a cautionary tale; it is the pages of history coming alive before our eyes, admonishing us to recognize the limits of human ingenuity — “The arm of flesh will fail you.”
2019 PDF 2019 eBook
When Moses boldly asked God to “show me Your glory,” the Lord responded, “No man can see my face and live” (Exodus 33:18, 20). Man, tainted by sin, cannot bear to be in the presence of God. Jesus says, “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” How do we purify our hearts?
The past couple of decades in brain research has yielded amazing and unexpected discoveries. Using MRI technology, brain researchers have better refined our understanding of the brain’s structure as well as how the brain responds to various stimuli. For example, to better understand how the brain of a smoker works, scientists would tell the test subjects to think about cigarettes and observe how the brain responds through MRI. All good research requires not only test subjects but also a control group. In such studies, the control group would be told to empty their minds and think of nothing. What we accidentally discovered is that the human brain does not default to think about nothing. Our “default setting” is to think about the future.