Bearing Grief through Truth and Worship

We all—hundreds of us—asked God for something good: a baby’s life. Something that would give us an opportunity to magnify his mercy and exalt Jesus together as a church family. Instead, he let baby Tahlia die just a few hours after she was born. Instead of a telling miracle story, we are grieving with our friends who have been left with empty arms.

Every grief is different, and it’s usually unfair to compare one loss with another. But most people seem to acknowledge that grief over a lost baby is in a special category.

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Godly Music Genre?

Ahhhh, music and Christians. I remember the 90s and the “worship wars” that happened. Some churches believed (and taught) that God’s music only came from the hymnal and only played on the organ & piano. Guitars, drums, and basically any other instrument is out of the question. Furthermore, any genre outside hymnody was out. All styles of music for the Christian are really just one style: hymns – the older, the better.

Now, as you may know (or not know, so I will expose you to it), these beliefs have not disappeared. In fact, last night I had one of my youth (a 14 year old young man) approach me about this very issue.… Continue reading

Biblical Genealogies: A Sample Meditation

Our previous blog post (March 2) discussed the purposes for biblical genealogies. Now, please read the genealogy found in 1 Chronicles 1:17–27,

    17 The sons of Shem: Elam, Asshur, Arpachshad, Lud, and Aram. And the sons of Aram: Uz, Hul, Gether, and Meshech. 18 Arpachshad fathered Shelah, and Shelah fathered Eber. 19 To Eber were born two sons: the name of the one was Peleg (for in his days the earth was divided), and his brother’s name was Joktan. 20 Joktan fathered Almodad, Sheleph, Hazarmaveth, Jerah, 21 Hadoram, Uzal, Diklah, 22 Obal, Abimael, Sheba, 23 Ophir, Havilah, and Jobab; all these were the sons of Joktan.

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The Outrageous Grace of Christ

The grace of God sets biblical Christianity apart from all religious systems.  It is at the very core of what it means to be a Christian.  The grace of God is what makes biblical Christianity different from every other worldview, every other philosophy, and every other way of life.  It is what makes biblical Christians, period.

I have long loved the definition of God’s grace that J.I. Packer gives in his classic book, Knowing God.  There he writes, “The grace of God is love freely shown towards guilty sinners, contrary to their merit and indeed in defiance of their demerit.… Continue reading

Biblical Genealogies: Begetting a Devotional Reading

You’ve heard it and maybe even said it yourself, “When I get to a genealogy in my Bible reading, I just skip it.” Genealogies (lists of names telling who is related to whom) can be boring and intimidating—especially if you have to read all those hard-to-pronounce names aloud for someone else to hear. However, Paul did not exclude the biblical genealogies when he wrote, “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16–17 esv).… Continue reading