MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.

Christ and the Church

April 3rd, 2018 Viewed 362 times

On a hill, nearly 2,000 years ago, God incarnate, recently resurrected, ascended into Heaven leaving the church here on Earth to carry His message of redemption and reconciliation to the four corners of the world.  In that time, it would seem that Christ has been silent, to the point that some in the first century believed that He would return soon and others continually wonder about the reality of what happened.

And yet God is not finished with His people, and He has not gone silent.  He provided revelation to the first century church, and He continues to bring all things to our remembrance through the Holy Spirit.

So, just what is Christ doing with His church today?  How do they interact?

Over the next couple of days we’re going to review the outcome of the events we celebrated this past Sunday with an eye to what we need to do with it today.

 

photo by: Claudio 

The Biggest Problem Facing America Today

August 16th, 2016 Viewed 1313 times, 1 so far today

America is a country in crisis.  Not a week goes by that we do not hear about some atrocity committed in different places within our borders.  People are dying from acts of nature and acts of other individuals, and one wonders how much more this nation can take.

But this country’s biggest problem isn’t the character of the individuals running for office, immigration, or any of the other issues of the day.  The biggest problem is that its people need a Savior.

The Gospel of Jesus Christ is the most powerful thing in the world.  Stronger than any man, more powerful than any nuclear device.  The power that raised Christ from the dead is the same power available to the believer.  It’s the power that is available to every believe, and it is a transformational power.

It is this power that changed Saul of Tarsus on the road to Damascus from a persecutor of the church to one of its greatest proclaimers.  It allowed many men and women to endure fierce persecution, more brutal than anything that ISIS has done, and one day it will be triumphant over the whole world.

It is the duty of every believer not to force Christianity upon a nation or people, but to proclaim the Gospel.  That is part of what makes Christianity so different.  It is a free gift– something that’s offered but should not be forced– though some down the years have tried.  There’s never a command for a believer to kill those that do not believe, only to walk away– sometimes knocking the dust off their feet to let God decide what to do with that place.

This is something that we should do, regardless of who is in the government or who is running for government.  If we would do that, and the Spirit would work, we would see serious change in this nation.  Without, we seem destined for fracture.

How To Live Victoriously In This Evil Age

June 9th, 2015 Viewed 1200 times, 3 so far today

windowslivewriterprayformypastor-c8adsay-your-prayers4.jpgLori Alexander gives us this:

Ephesians 4 is a great chapter to study in how we are to live victoriously in this evil age and explains why man is so evil without Him. First of all, God has given preachers, prophets, teachers and others “for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.” Therefore, make sure you are listening to preachers and teachers who teach the Word without watering it down in any way. Find a strong, biblically-based church and always beware of false teachers.

God’s purpose in this is so we are not longer like babies in our thinking, but mature believers in Christ able to easily discern good from evil. Then we will be able to speak the Truth in love to others who are beginning to wander from the faith or are in outright rebellion to God’s ways. Our purpose is to become like Jesus, since He is the head of the church, our Savior, and Lord! [Living Victoriously in this Evil Age]

Making Christ More Appealing

June 8th, 2015 Viewed 1485 times

Bible-and-Cross.jpgWhat does it say for our faith when we believe that we have to make Christ more appealing in order for someone to accept Him or want to follow Him?  That’s the topic that the Ordinary Pastor took up recently in his post How Do I Make Christ Appealing?

Regrettably, we can often, in our ostensibly noble ambitions, find ourselves employing unbiblical means. We aim to make Christ more appealing to the one who seems to that he is not very appealing. This usually means giving Jesus something of an extreme-makeover so that the eligible unbeliever might be won over. We may be tempted to change his message, his tone, his requirements, his work, his kingdom, and his demands.  Somehow our humble desires got laced with pride. There is nothing worse than making a Jesus in the image of the unbeliever. God-making is not noble, it is idolatry.

Hell is for Real

April 3rd, 2015 Viewed 1722 times, 1 so far today

One of the phrases that has stuck with me since my time at Bob Jones University is one that was sort of a question and answer phrase:

Speaker: The most sobering reality in the world today is that…

Response: People are dying and going to Hell today.

Some in modern Christendom have decided that Hell is not real, that all make it to Heaven.  They are shrinking from this reality because this reality is inconvenient and, frankly, difficult to accept.  How can a loving God send people to a place of eternal torment?  The answer is that in order to be good, He must be just.  That justice does not allow for sin to be excused without a substitute.

On this Good Friday, as we remember what Jesus has done by shedding His blood on the cross and taking the punishment of our sin on Himself, let us remember that there is a punishment for sin– death and Hell.  Let us remember the call, that there people that are dying and going to Hell today, and that we are tasked with the mission to reach them with the Good News of redemption.

Do You Care For Other Believers?

April 1st, 2015 Viewed 1425 times

The book of Nehemiah is one of my favorites.  Here we have a man who was not a prophet, priest, or king, but was a lay worker– a food tester for a king.  This man had risen through the ranks, being part of an occupied people, and he was in a position of importance because he held the king’s life in his hands.

As we journey through this book together, think about his perspective and let’s ask some of the questions that he asked and think through what he thought

So What’s There to Talk About?

July 9th, 2014 Viewed 1664 times, 1 so far today
737353: The Complete Husband
The Complete Husband
By Lou Priolo

In this chapter, the author stars out with a personal account of a moving incident in his life where a music minister made the following comment to him:

If we Christians are in any business at all, it’s the communication business.

And he’s right.  Whether it’s preaching the gospel, teaching others to make disciples or admonishing a brother we’re communicating.  In fact, Priolo stats that there are over forty communication commands in the New Testament epistles!

The point that he’s trying to make is that we have to be communicating with one another if we’re going to be able to experience the level of intimacy that is called for in marriage.  The degree to which we are willing to reveal ourselves to each other will have a direct impact on how close we can get to one another.  That’s why the questions that he had us guys ask our wives in the last section cut so close to the heart.  We have to be willing to be vulnerable if we want to learn our wife’s heart.

So, practically, this means that we, as husbands, need to be talking to our wives.  If you need a handful of suggestions about what to talk about, he provides a few:

  1. Bible Doctrine – Does your wife feel comfortable talking with you about what the Bible says?  Asking you questions?
  2. Your home – It’s the “base of operations” for your wife’s ministry.  “The condition and appearance of your home is probably more important to her than you realize.”
  3. The children – Dad, your the manager in the home, and you’re the one ultimately responsible.  You should be talking about your children.
  4. Your job – Since she’s your helper she may be able to help you better if she knows what’s gone on during your day– no matter how much you don’t want to talk about it.
  5. Her family (your in-laws) – There have been many Biblical conflicts that had inlaws at the center of them.  You need to have Biblical conversations about her family and their influence.
  6. Her friends – Do you care about who she chooses as friends?  They can influence her for good or evil.  You have an outside view in, you should be giving her the benefit of your perspective.
  7. Her ministries (inside and outside of the home) – “Life is a ministry.”  Are you encouraging her to minister outside the home?  Are you helping her discover her gifts for service?
  8. Her goals for the future – Personal goals, goals of mutual interest, and other goals she has should be exciting for us as well.
  9. Specific ways you can be a better husband and father – Again with the humility.  But then again, she is a helper, and has a perspective that we don’t.  “When was the last time you asked you wife for her evaluation of how you’re doing in these areas?”
  10. Things you do which bother her – This topic is guaranteed to provide you hours of interesting discussion.

Whew– and that’s only to get your started!


By now you know, the link is to where you can pick up the book. This post is all mine.

11 Questions to Ask Your Wife

July 8th, 2014 Viewed 1593 times, 2 so far today
737353: The Complete Husband
The Complete Husband
By Lou Priolo

The best way to get to know your wife is to talk to her.  But instead of asking her about the weather, try instead to ask her things that build your relationship– intimate questions.

In the second chapter (entitled Back to School for the Rest of My Life!) of our book, the author suggests 11 questions that we can ask our wives to get to know them better.  Warning, these are not for the faint of heart:

  1. If you could change three things about me that would make me more Christ-like, what would you change?
  2. Do I have any other annoying mannerisms or irritating idiosyncrasies that you would like to see me change?
  3. How does it make you feel when I… (name something that you know displeases her)?
  4. What goes through your mind when I… (name something that you know displeases her)?
  5. What do you want from me that I’m not giving you at the moment I… (name something that you know displeases her)?
  6. What specifically would you like to see me do to change in this area (name something that you know displeases her)?
  7. On a scale from one to ten, how would you rate our marriage?
  8. What would it take to make our marriage a ten?
  9. What is your opinion about?
  10. What personal goals do you have for your life?  How may I help you achieve them?
  11. Do you have any needs or desires that you believe I ought to be meeting or fulfilling better than I do?  What are they?

He then goes on to tell us to add further questions of our own.

One thing’s for sure, if you start with these questions I’m sure your wife will say some interesting things!


The link above is an affiliate link. I get a portion of the proceeds if you choose to purchase it (though the price does not change). I was not paid to write this post.

I Wish She Came With an Owners Manual

July 6th, 2014 Viewed 1271 times
737353: The Complete Husband
The Complete Husband
By Lou Priolo

Guys, let’s face it. There are some times that you wish she came with an owner’s manual. Something that would tell you all kinds of things about her:

  • Proper care and maintenance.
  • How to read her emotional meters.
  • Ways to make her run at optimal efficiency.
  • What to do when something goes wrong.

The truth is, she does come with a manual, it just needs to be extracted and written down:

The reason that you’ve never seen it is because it’s tucked away in her heart. Deep down in her heart is all the personal information you need to understand and nurture your wife according to the Bible.

But Did I Share the Gospel?

July 5th, 2014 Viewed 972 times

This post starts out like a cute story we as parents are all too familiar with…

Just yesterday, I asked my son to clean his room. As most ten year olds do, he bantered back and forth with me, “Maaaaaa, it’s summmmmer”, and “Maaaa, I cleaned my room yesterday!” Finally, when I mentioned the upcoming consequence, he begrudgingly ran upstairs, shut the door, and from my knowledge did what he was supposed to do.

About an hour later, I heard him running down the stairs and in all excitement, approached me with his hand outstretched and a smile on his face… “Mom, look at what I made for you!”

Lo and behold there it was- a marvelously handmade “Starburst ” rainbow loom bracelet that he had been trying to master for weeks. First, I told him how beautiful it was and thanked him, then I walked up the stairs, opened up his door, and peered into a room that hadn’t been cleaned.

I yelled down to my son, and asked him to come upstairs. I questioned him why he didn’t clean up his room, like I had asked. He replied, “Mom, I was too busy making you a bracelet.” I looked at him and said, “Grant, I love that you made me this bracelet, but you weren’t obedient to what I wanted you to do. You served me the way you wanted to serve me, rather than doing what I asked.”

Then I stopped dead in my tracks.

What was her revelation?  Find out at But Did I Share the Gospel?

MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.