Archive for September, 2015

September 28, 2015

Believing is Fundamental

by Lester Young

You know, when you read and study the Bible, you come across some amazing revelations that can really curl your toes – and it’s great when that happens. But then there are other things that can come across so subtly – while still turning out to be so profoundly central – they can slip right through the cracks in our attention without our ever truly noticing them. And oddly enough, those latter ones often end up having more of a long-term effect on us than the big stuff.

Take, as an example, the truth that ‘God is love’ (1 John 4:16). If you’re born again, you’re probably well aware of that passage of Scripture. And even though we as the Body of Christ may be familiar with it (though that’s not to say we automatically have the deepest revelations of it, because we don’t), have you ever stopped to think that most of the rest of the world has never even heard such a thing before? And if they have, they certainly don’t actually believe it: “A God Who’s pure love, start to finish… Who loves me… personally. Are you serious?!? Well if that’s really the case, then why is the world in the shape it’s in? And why the heck is it running over me every chance it gets?!?”

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September 21, 2015

The Good News should be… Good!

by Lester Young

Have you ever considered what God might think about how we typically portray Him to the world? I don’t know about you, but I’m not really convinced He’s all that tickled with the image we – as members of His Church – usually paint of Him. Let’s face it: the fact of the matter is that most of the world’s people know what (little) they know about the Lord Jesus Christ through us – His Body here on the earth. And it’s a real possibility that all they’ll ever find out about Him will be encapsulated in their experience with us – which could be tragic, because all too often the impression we give off leaves them, at best, totally indifferent to Him; or at worst running for the hills in abject terror. In other words, not very much in the way of… shall we say… “attracting”.

That’s a real shame (to put it mildly), because the truth is that God is an extremely kind and gracious Father. He’s the Source and essence of Love (1 John 4:8, 16). But if people don’t learn this about Him – and even more importantly begin to sense it through their interactions with us His children and ambassadors (2 Corinthians 5:20; 1 John 4:7, 16-17) – the overwhelming likelihood is that they’ll never, ever turn to Him. Human beings respond to love – we just do. We were made that way. Our heavenly Father – the One Who created us in His own image and likeness – is Love; so Love, by necessity, on some level, must be a central part of us. That’s why we respond when we sense love. And that’s why our Great Commission is to go forth and preach the Good News to all creation (Mark 16:15). The GOOD News. Why is it good news? Because it’s full to overflowing with Love, and Love is good (John 3:16; 1 Corinthians 13:4-7).

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