Psalm 91:11-12: Angels Unaware; Not Them, Us

The more you traverse the text of Scripture, the more the angels fly forth from its pages.  The book of Judges alone mentions angels some 20 times.  Read through the Psalms with a careful eye, and you will find them in more places than imagined.  For example, Psalm 8 informs we are created a little […]

Luke 17:11-19: Christ’s Uncommon Mercy

Most of us don’t stumble over rare artifacts since they are, well, rare; sometimes, one of a kind.  Some of you into specialized hobbies may.  Perhaps Denny Villwok handled a rare musket or Nancy, our organist, played on a historic, well-piped organ.  Either way, don’t think you’re unlucky, for each Christian experiences the rarest thing […]

Mark, Lesson 1: Introduction

By Pr Rich Futrell Overview With the events in his Gospel, Mark makes no attempt to link them to the historical events taking place within Judea or the Roman Empire.  Neither does Mark bother to explain the links between the various events he covers, the exception being what takes place during Christ’s passion.  Rather, his […]

The Monsters Among Us

This is our pastor’s newsletter article for October 2019. Ancient peoples dreaded the deep.  The darkened abyss gurgled with predatory beasts, fanged creatures to swallow you whole, hungering for more.  Today, those shrieking, mythical denizens still fill us with wonder, if not terror.  In the Bible, the book of Job mentions the leviathan and other […]

Luke 16:1-9: The Dishonest Manager

The beginning of Luke’s Gospel: A pregnant virgin sings, rejoicing in her God.  The Lord “toppled the mighty from their thrones and exalted the lowly.  The hungry, he filled with wondrous things but sent away the rich with nothing” (Luke 1:52-53).  The song of Mary sets the stage.  The rest of Luke’s written Gospel highlights […]

Subjective Justification

Recap and Intro Justification: God’s declaration of righteousness, which also establishes someone in a state of righteousness.  This can only happen because someone’s sins are forgiven.  (“Justification” can also refer to someone revealing his righteousness by how he lives, for example, in much of James.) Christ, in His saving work, justified the entire world.  Before […]

Matthew 7:15-23: False Prophets

“Beware of false prophets,” our Lord cautions.  The danger is real; otherwise, why did Jesus warn us with such words?  Now, if a false prophet can exist, so also can false teaching and worship.  From their mouths flow words of death, not life. “Enter through the narrow gate,” the warning continues.  Why?  The boulevard of […]

Objective Justification

This is a short series we’re studying on justification, with this first lesson on the objective reality of what Jesus did. Our Universal Condition The book of Romans reveals our universal human condition.  The writer, Paul, combines two Old-Testament passages to announce this reality. Masoretic Text Septuagint Romans Paul’s Point Ecclesiastes 7:20 There is none […]

Ecclesiastes 9:7-10: Vocation

How did we find ourselves in such an unsatisfying and uncivil place?  From our perspective of only a few decades, we realize the most basic of civilities are slinking away.  Too many people drive like jerks and yell at others for being too slow.  One person cries out against intolerance but is intolerant toward those […]

The Conundrum of Faith and Love

This is our pastor’s article for the Summer, 2019 edition of our newsletter. Faith The workings of a holy God are contrary to our sinful nature, for He is pure and we are not.  So, don’t let how He chooses to do things surprise you.  Still, we often are.  Reflect on faith, and you will […]