DEVOTIONAL

Back to the Basics

First-century Christianity was simple and uncluttered. Early Christians cut through the complexity of their culture and allowed what was primary and essential to surface.  

What are the basics that matter in our faith? Here are four cornerstones:

  1. God and his word are trustworthy.
  2. Christ is the Savior and King.
  3. There’s hope for the future and forgivenes...

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Baptized Billfolds

General Sam Houston, one of my heroes, was commander the army of the Republic of Texas, the first elected president of the Republic of Texas, first Senator from the state of Texas, and later the sixth governor of the state. Life on the Texas frontier was rough and rugged. Men molded by the frontier knew how to fight, drink, curse, and kill. Sam Houston fit the lifestyle comfortably and was know...

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Keeping Out of Debt

Years ago I heard a man warn, “If you’re outgo exceeds your income, you’re upkeep will be your downfall.” We need to remember that. Unmanageable debt can be deadly, whether you’re talking about Wall Street or Main Street. Whether it’s your house or the White House.  

How do we avoid too much debt?

  • Establish a budget and live within it.
  • Defer gratification until...

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The Week Without God

The week is the only measurement of time that has its origin in religion. Days, months, and years are determined by the movement of the planets, but God gave us the week.

The Bible says in Genesis that God created the heavens and the earth in six days, and on the seventh day he blessed it and set it aside saying, “Remember the Sabbath (seventh) day to keep it holy (separate and differen...

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Treasures in Heaven

Pat Neff, one-time governor of Texas and later president of Baylor University, once said, “All my life I’ve heard preachers tell me to lay up treasures in heaven, but none of them ever told me how to do it. I had to figure it out on my own.

“The only way to get our treasures into heaven is to put them in something that is going there. Cattle, land, houses, stocks and bonds, all have no...

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The Disturbing Jesus

It’s interesting, don’t you think, that after 2,000 years people still feel a need to attack Jesus? You can see examples of the vehement ridicule of Christ everywhere in our American culture and beyond every day.  

Why does Jesus still disturb so? Are they trying to expose him as a fraud? If so, it’s a little late for that.  

Are they trying to justify their own sin because his...

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Pay Attention to Your Family

B.H. Carroll, who founded the world’s largest seminary, lamented at the deathbed of his son, “I’ve taken care of the Lord’s house but not my own.” Billy Sunday, one of America’s greatest evangelists of the past, saw all four of his children die before reaching their 40th birthday. He said, “Funny, but in the last 20 years I’ve spoken to 85 million people. I’ve had the joy of seeing thousands co...

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There's No Looking Back

When someone suggested that rowing become a part of Clemson University’s athletic program, then athletic director Frank Howard declared, “We aren’t gonna have no sport where you sit down and go backwards.”

In our churches, cities, and individual lives we must spend our time looking ahead, not backwards.

Satchel Page, the great black baseball pitcher used to say, “Don’t look back...

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Joy in Life

Father George DePrizio was in Rome years ago for a gathering of bishops. They discussed among other things why the church has lost the youth. One of the bishops, an American, rose and said, “My brother bishops, we have been busy bringing forth many reasons why we have lost the youth. I would be bold enough to give perhaps the first and real reason: it is our lack of joy. We have failed to witne...

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Today's Devotional

Our Unchanging God

Anthropologist Margaret Mead once said, “We are living in the period of greatest change ever known in the history of the world.” Amid all the changes and decay of life, it is encouraging to know that God is unchanging (Malachi 3:6). How so?

First, God is unchanging in his demand for meaningful worship.

Cheap sacrifices and empty formalism never have and still don’t satisfy him. Religious observances cannot substitute for right living. We are not to leave off church attendance and prayer, but they are all sheer futility and mockery if they are not accompanied by right moral conduct. God still demands good moral conduct from his people.

Second, God is unchanging in his hatred for sin.

Sin is anything contrary to the will and word of God. God always has and always will oppose sin because of what it does to people. Every law from God has been for our benefit and well-being. Sin is like sand in the ball bearings of the human personality. It creates friction and eventually total ruin wherever it is found. The whole Bible story is a record of God’s actions to remove sin and restore humanity to our original perfect state. 

Third, God is unchanging in his plans for the future.

He plans to return to the earth again to distinguish between good and evil and reward people accordingly. Any view of life that does not take into account the future and final judgment of God and our accountability to him is an inadequate view. 

Amid this changing, uncertain world the Bible reminds us to take courage. All things are not passing away. Some things remain unchanged. God and his Son Jesus Christ are the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8).

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