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The Godly Man – Deuteronomy 6

The Bible is not replete with long or detailed sections on how to be a good father.To be sure, there are verses that are directed explicitly to fathers as such, but these are few and far between (cf. Eph. 6:4, for example).Neither will you find passages that celebrate fatherhood the way you will find it celebrated in Father’s Day cards.I am reminded of this every time Father’s Day rolls around because as I try to think of a relevant passage to preach from, I quickly realize that the standard stock for Father’s Day sermon texts is short and sweet.
This does not mean, of course, that God has a low esteem of fathers.After all, he is presented to us in the Trinity as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.As believers, we relate to God as Father through the Son in the power of the Spirit.We pray, “Abba, Father,” and receive with joy the Spirit of adoption (Rom. 8:14-17).As our Lord was about to ascend back into heaven, he reminded his followers that he was about to ascend to his Father and their Fat…

Words that Edify – Ephesians 4:29

Our world is awash in words.About one million books are published each year, about 2700 books per day.Even more breathtaking is the fact that with the advent of the internet, this torrent of verbal effusion has increased with blogs: we are told that about two million blog posts are published every day!Add to this the fact that each one of the approximately seven billion people on earth speaks on average about 370,000,000 words during their lifetime, and it is easy to see just how important words are to the human race.
It is this ability to speak that is one of the preeminent ways that humans are separated from the animals.Language is tool that we take for granted, and yet it is something so profound that it is simply cannot adequately be described with a “bottom-up” explanation in terms of chemistry and physics.Oxford mathematician John Lennox tells a story of a conversation he had with another scientist at the university.This man was a chemist who subscribed to the idea that everythin…

From Burglars to Benefactors – Ephesians 4:28

There are a couple of things that immediately strike me as I consider this passage.The first is that the gospel is powerful enough to take those who once were thieves and to make them members of the church.Think about the kind of person you associate with robbers.These are members of the criminal classes, people who have very little, if any, respect for their fellow man.And yet, the apostle is addressing people in the church at Ephesus who once participated in that kind of life.As John Stott so aptly put it, “none but Christ can transform a burglar into a benefactor!”[1]And Christ does this.He takes people from the darkest parts of society and remakes them into new men and women.He takes people who took from others and recreates them into people who now give to the very people from whom they once stole.I’ve seen elephants and lions, constrained by thirst, drink from the same pool of water.There is an uneasy truce, as they eye each other while they sip up the water.Some things can brin…