scripture

Posts with the ‘scripture’ tag

One of Those Moments

I hope I don’t get in trouble. During a Bible study today I quit reading my Bible, quit paying attention, and did something I normally would never do: I pulled out my phone and snapped a picture when I should have been dialed in. It was a powerful moment. It was a moment I wanted to savor by capturing it. Do you ever have those moments? Times you want to record in order to relive in the future? Bill McKenzie, the founder of Pine Cove, met with our leadership team to encourage us from the book of Nehemiah. It was […]

Read More

Studying the Bible: Research

This is the fourth post in a series of articles that outline some basic steps to practice in studying the Bible. For a list of all the posts, click here. Step 4: Research the Book After taking the time to outline the book and understand the author’s flow of thought throughout the letter, I then turn my attention to understanding the immediate context of the book. The Bible has been written over thousands of years by multiple different authors from all walks of life. It was written in three different languages and over the course of several major world events […]

Read More

Studying the Bible: Outline

This is the third post in a series of articles that outline some basic steps to practice in studying the Bible. For a list of all the posts, click here. Step 3: Outline the Whole Book Once I have read the book three times, I’ll use the information I gathered while reading through the book and begin the process of discerning an outline. So, the objective here is to work in reverse. I have the written letter from Peter. If he would have used an outline, what would it have looked like? Outlining the book will help me think through […]

Read More

Studying the Bible: Reading

This is the second post in a series of articles that outline some basic steps to practice in studying the Bible. For a list of all the posts, click here. Step 2: Read the Whole Book In our previous post we outlined that prayer is not only the starting point but also the environment for studying the Scriptures. Once we are rightly oriented, we should first immerse ourselves in the content of the entire book before attempting to understand the meaning of one part of it. So, the next thing I do in my study is read the entire book […]

Read More

Studying the Bible: Where to Begin?

I remember when I was a freshman in college that I loved reading the Bible and wanted to study it deeply, but I felt like I didn’t possess the tools I needed to be able to effectively or meaningfully study it. I didn’t know where to start and, even if I did attempt to start, I had no idea if I was headed in the right direction once I did. Thankfully, an older man in my life took me under his wing and taught me how to study the Scriptures. Unfortunately, that doesn’t happen for all of us. As much […]

Read More

The Defeat of Death

As a high school student, I was not the best in my English classes. That struggle continued with me all the way into my freshman classes in college. My struggle has many elements. English was essentially my third language as I was raised speaking Dutch and grew up in a Spanish-speaking neighborhood in southern California. But enough of my excuses. What I do remember about all of my English classes, however, was the use of past tense, present tense, and future tense. As I read through the book of Isaiah in the Old Testament, I am amazed by a past […]

Read More

Faith: No Doubt About it

A condition that plagues many Christians today – both young and old – is what I call Thomasphobia: the fear of doubting. This malady often begins in elementary Sunday school class when the Easter story is told and children hear about Doubting Thomas. Wide-eyed children are asked, “Can you believe Thomas doubted that Jesus rose from the dead? You don’t want to be a Doubting Thomas do you?” This is significant because as these children grow and begin to think more about their beliefs, they may have genuine questions that need answering, but since it’s been ingrained in them that […]

Read More

The Bible Tells Me So

For a majority of Christian families, one of the first songs their children learn is Jesus Loves Me, and the wonderful news of this love is based on the words that follow: “for the Bible tells me so.” The truth is, our beliefs are built on what we find in Scripture, which is why critics so often attack the reliability of the Bible. The first recorded words of Satan show him questioning the truthfulness of God’s Word (“Did God really say…?”). So do we have the very words of God, as 1 Thessalonians 2:13 claims, or is the Bible simply […]

Read More

7 Ways to Prepare for Sunday

If you’re like me, Sunday mornings can often feel hectic and anything but restful or even spiritual. As you’re thinking through changes for the New Year, I’d like to suggest some ways to help your hearing of God’s Word be more effective and to even make your Sundays less stressful. Why Prepare? Matthew 13 records the Parable of the Sower, where Jesus illustrated God’s Word as seed landing on different soils, each representing a person’s heart and with four different outcomes. His point was that the result of hearing God’s Word always depends on the condition of the hearer’s heart. […]

Read More

A Foundation for Marriage

As I’ve been on the web lately, I’ve seen many ads such as “5 Steps for Better Abs” or “How to Lose 10 Pounds in 10 Days.” These all sound appealing to those of us who would like a quick fix, but they’re not usually as easy as they seem, which is why most of us don’t pay attention to the ads. I’ve seen the same types of ads for marriage. They read something like “10 Ways to Safe-Proof Your Marriage” or “6 Steps to an Easier Marriage.” Alluring and inspiring, right? As I talk with newlyweds, I find that […]

Read More