Monthly Archives: January 2014

John 5:1-16 — Blinded by rules

Rules are a good thing.  It tends to put order where there is disorder.  This is true in the classroom (where I teach), it’s true in our households, and it’s true in society. But rules can be harmful when people … Continue reading

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John 5:1-15 — Desiring wholeness

Sometimes I wonder if people really desire wholeness in their lives.  They often complain about their marriage or relationships, they complain about their jobs or their health, but they never seem to do anything about it.  They almost seem to … Continue reading

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Matthew 9:14-17; Mark 2:18-22; Luke 5:33-39 — For God to use you

One thing that the religious leaders always seemed to be trying to do was to pit John the Baptist versus Jesus.  And John’s disciples fell for it every time.  First, these leaders pointed out to John’s disciples that Jesus was … Continue reading

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Matthew 9:10-13; Mark 2:15-17; Luke 5:29-32 — Mercy-givers

Here we see a big difference between Jesus and the religious leaders of the day.  A heart of mercy. Matthew was so excited to be called by Jesus, that he immediately invited Jesus to a great banquet with him and … Continue reading

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Matthew 9:9; Mark 2:13-14; Luke 5:27-28 — Never beyond redemption

I love these passages because it teaches us one thing.  We’re never so far gone that God’s love can’t reach us. One day, Jesus was walking past the tax collecting booth of a man named Matthew.  I kind of wonder … Continue reading

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Matthew 9:2-8; Mark 2:1-12; Luke 5:18-26 — The power to forgive

Who was this Jesus?  Just a great religious teacher?  A good, moral man?  A miracle worker?  Or something more? From this passage, we can see that Jesus was something much more.  Jesus was back in Capernaum where he had made … Continue reading

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Matthew 8:2-4; Mark 1:40-45; Luke 5:12-16 — The One who cleanses

I love the compassion of Jesus that we see in this passage.  A man covered with leprosy came to Jesus, begging him, Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.  (Matthew 8:2) Being leprous back in those days … Continue reading

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Matthew 4:23-25; Mark 1:35-39; Luke 4:42-44 — Recharging, refocusing

When Jesus started his ministry, he went all out, touching as many people as he could, spending the whole day doing his Father’s will. But one thing that he never did was burn out.  I’ve been through burnout in ministry … Continue reading

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Matthew 8:14-16; Mark 1:29-34; Luke 4:38-41 — The One who heals

Here we catch a glimpse of the healing ministry of Jesus as it kicks into full gear.  It starts with Jesus visiting Peter’s home, and healing Peter’s mother-in-law.  It strikes me here that this was the first time Jesus healed … Continue reading

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Mark 1:21-28; Luke 4:31-37 — Authority

What makes Jesus different from all the other great religious leaders that started major religions?  There are many things, of course, first and foremost the fact that Jesus is God, and that he rose from the dead.  All the others … Continue reading

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Luke 4:14-30 — To all who receive him

As I read this passage, I can’t help but think about John 1:11-12, where it says, He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.  Yet to all who received him, to those who … Continue reading

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John 4:43-54 — Taking Jesus at his word

In this passage, we see Jesus’ first miraculous healing, although one can guess that he had done other healings before this.  (John 2:23) But the thing that strikes me here is this royal official’s response to Jesus.  This royal official … Continue reading

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Matthew 4:12-17; Mark 1:14-15; Luke 4:14-15 — A light in the darkness

I mentioned yesterday the question of why God allowed John the Baptist to go to prison.  We don’t know for sure, but perhaps one reason was to get people’s eyes off of John and solely on to Jesus. For right … Continue reading

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Luke 3:18-20 — But wasn’t I doing your will?

Sometimes, as we go through the Christian life, we go through hard times as a result of our own bad decisions.  I once went through unemployment, because though all the warning signs were there that my company was about to … Continue reading

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John 4:27-42 — Breaking down the barriers

The disciples’ reaction to Jesus’ conversation with the Samaritan woman is very interesting.  John writes, Just then his disciples returned and were surprised to find him talking with a woman.  But no one asked, “What do you want?” or “Why … Continue reading

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John 4:19-24 — True worship

In the midst of the dialogue between Jesus and the woman at the well, we see an interesting sidelight into worship. The woman stung by the truth of her own life, tries to divert Jesus, saying,  “I see you’re a … Continue reading

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John 4:1-26 — Brutal honesty? Or truth in love?

Well, after two days in a sickbed, and a day of catching up with my work, I’m back blogging.  If you could throw some prayers my way, I’d appreciate it.  I’m not nearly at a 100% today. Someone once said … Continue reading

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John 3:22-35 — Who we want people to follow

Discipleship.  The more I think about it, the more important I realize it is.  But what is the goal of discipleship? Too often, people get wrapped up in making disciples of themselves.  They want others to look at them for … Continue reading

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John 3:19-21 — Stepping out into the light

I mentioned in my last blog that we are not in danger of being condemned if we reject Christ.  We are already condemned.  Judgment has already been passed. And in this passage, we see the verdict that was passed against … Continue reading

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John 3:16-18 — The other side of the gospel

The word “gospel,” as most people know, means “good news.”  But the good news can’t really be understood until you understand the bad news.  What is the bad news?  It’s found in verse 18 of this passage. Whoever does not … Continue reading

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John 3:9-16 — How to be born again

In my last blog, we saw Jesus explaining to Nicodemus the need to be born again.  That we can’t work our way into heaven any more than we can work our way into the physical world. In both cases, we … Continue reading

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John 3:1-8 — Born again

We now come to one of the most famous passages in scripture.  In the States and most Western countries, most people have at least heard the idea of being born again even if they don’t understand it.  But what does … Continue reading

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John 2:12-25 — Jesus’ zeal for his temple

Well, for those who have been praying for my computer, thank you.  It’s finally back up and running after hours of futile troubleshooting.  All of it actually sparked a thought for today’s blog. In this passage, Jesus comes to the … Continue reading

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John 2:1-11 — Wine or grape juice?

A long time ago, as a teenager I think, I glanced through a book called “Wine or Grape Juice?” or some such title. I can’t really remember all it said, but I got the impression through the book that when … Continue reading

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John 1:35-42 — To be where Jesus is

I almost feel like I’ve been rushing through the gospel passages at times, so I want to slow it down a bit and take a closer look at this passage. When John the Baptist’s disciples heard John tell them that … Continue reading

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John 1:19-51 — Pointing the way

A lot of times, Christians get scared about sharing Jesus with their family and friends.  Part of the reason is that they think they have to have certain qualifications to do so.  Or that they need special Bible knowledge to … Continue reading

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Matthew 4; Mark 1; Luke 4 — Following the Father

Happy New Year all! I suppose there’s no better way to start the year then remembering who we are to follow heading into the New Year.  It’s the person whom Jesus followed while he walked this earth, and you see … Continue reading

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