The same message

Every week I preach justification by faith to my people, because every week they forget it.

–Martin Luther

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Published in: on 01/31/2012 at 7:13  Leave a Comment  
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Offer or demand?

Now John’s (the Baptist) Gospel was the Gospel of a Demand: thou shalt do this, and thou shalt do that. It can bring no more than what Herrmann calls “a troubled piety,” a straining to fulfill overhanging demands. Its type is that of the set jaw, of the clinched fist, and the strained soul, and its motto is, We will fight it out along this line if it takes till death.

The gospel of Jesus is not the Gospel of a Demand but the Gospel of an Offer. Christ offers life to men: “He that drinketh of the waters that I shall give him shall never thirst,” for “they shall become in him a well.” Here is not an agonizing to live, but an acceptance of life—abundant and full. Just here is the essential difference between other systems and the gospel of Christ. The one struggles upward in order that it may issue in self-salvation; the other accepts an offer and it issues in self-sacrifice…

Of course, at the center of that offer is a demand—for repentance, for self-surrender, for following—but once the offer is accepted, the demand dances its way into a delight and is gone.

–E. Stanley Jones

Published in: on 01/30/2012 at 8:19  Leave a Comment  
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He knows your name

In the great religions of the East, the believers, with their individuality, resemble the rivers which flow into the ocean, and are dissolved in it. Through the All-in-One or in the notheringness of Nirvana the individual finds his fulfillment in his own dissolution. But where Christ holds sway, we do not flow into a nameless ocean; we do not dissolve into a nothingness which comprises everything. No: where the God who himself seeks man has the last word, I am rather called by my own name.

–Tibor Fabiny

Knowing God

The Word we study has to be the Word we pray. My personal experience of the relentless tenderness of God came not from exegetes, theologians, and spiritual writers, but from sitting still in the presence of the living Word and beseeching Him to help me understand with my head and heart His written Word. Sheer scholarship alone cannot reveal to us the gospel of grace. We must never allow the authority of books, institutions, or leaders to replace the authority of “knowing” Jesus Christ personally and directly. When the religious views of others interpose between us and the primary experience of Jesus as the Christ, we become unconvicted and unpersuasive travel agents handing out brochures to places we have never visited.

— Brennan Manning

Published in: on 01/26/2012 at 9:00  Leave a Comment  
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The most beautiful people

The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, a sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.

–Elizabeth Kubler-Ross

Being a man

That’s what being a man
is all about, boy.
It’s just doing
what’s got to be done.

–Robert Newton Peck

Published in: on 01/24/2012 at 7:55  Leave a Comment  
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When we don’t know God

The road of “trying to please God”
is called religion.
Religion is what we do when
we don’t know
the Father and Son.

–Baxter Kruger

Published in: on 01/23/2012 at 10:59  Leave a Comment  
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Love’s power

He that
is furnished
with love,
stands at
a distance
from all sin.

–Polycarp
(69?-155?)

Published in: on 01/20/2012 at 16:09  Leave a Comment  
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Lightening the burden

The burden of life
is from ourselves,
its lightness from
the grace of Christ
and the love of God.

–William B. Ullanthorne
(1806-1889)

Overcoming challenges

Challenges are what
make life interesting;
overcoming them is what
makes life meaningful.

–Joshua J. Marine

Published in: on 01/08/2012 at 7:37  Leave a Comment  
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Cross country skiing

Cross country skiing
is great if you live
in a small country.

–Steven Wright

Published in: on 01/07/2012 at 13:15  Leave a Comment  

Moment by moment faith

The Christian faith is meant to be lived moment by moment. It isn’t some broad, general outline–it’s a long walk with a real Person. Details count: passing thoughts, small sacrifices, a few encouraging words, little acts of kindness, brief victories over nagging sins.

–Joni Eareckson Tada

Published in: on 01/07/2012 at 8:08  Leave a Comment  
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One road to joy

There is only one
and only one possible
road to joy:
selfless love.

–Peter Kreeft

Published in: on 01/06/2012 at 9:04  Leave a Comment  
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Living to the hilt

Wherever you are, be all there!
Live to the hilt every situation
you believe to be the will of God.

–Jim Elliot

Published in: on 01/05/2012 at 12:31  Leave a Comment  
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Driven to God by misery

If you are not willing that God should have his way with you, then, in the name of God, be miserable–until your misery drive you to the arms of the Father.

–George MacDonald

Published in: on 01/04/2012 at 16:44  Leave a Comment  
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His arm needs no twisting

Faith doesn’t twist God’s arm.
Faith is the assurance that
His arms are open.

–Glen Scrivener

Published in: on 01/03/2012 at 10:55  Leave a Comment  
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Leap of faith

Sometimes your only
available transportation
is a leap of faith.

–Margaret Shepard

Published in: on 01/01/2012 at 19:52  Leave a Comment  
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The only issue

One of the most difficult aspects of piety is learning that in a sense there is nothing we need to do.

No amount of spiritual experience
will get us more connected to the vine.

No virtue will bring us anymore into union with Christ than we are already. The only issue for us to attend with utter seriousness is what it means to be who we are in union with Christ.

–Andrew Purves

Published in: on 01/01/2012 at 17:18  Leave a Comment  
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