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Taught by Grace Profile

Taught by Grace

English, Religion, 2 seasons, 185 episodes, 2 days, 3 hours, 39 minutes
Taught by Grace is a podcast set upon descending into the mine of the Bible to pull out the gold within the pages of Scripture so that Christians may know how to live by God's grace and for His glory. Yes, I know. This is *another* Christian podcast. So what can you expect from Taught by Grace that may cause you to tune in? - Weekly episodes studying a passage of Scripture - Addressing modern issues from a Biblical worldview - Occasional interviews about topics concerning the Christian life Join me, Noah Hooper, as we look at these matters on the Taught by Grace podcast!
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183 - A Better Way to Live: Haggai 1:1-15

There are two ways we can live - in disobedience or in obedience. Haggai 1 shows how Israel was living in disobedience by not rebuilding the temple. By living this way, they discovered that life wasn't really satisfying. We will see in chapter one that to live in disobedience to God's Word is the most unsatisfying way to live and that to live in obedience to God's Word is most satisfying.
6/11/202417 minutes, 56 seconds
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182 - Haggai: Consider Your Ways

Haggai is a little book tucked away toward the end of the Old Testament. If the pages are stuck together in your Bible, you may unknowingly skip right on by this book. Yet, this book has much to teach us about the glory of God and how His saints glorify Him. Over the next five weeks, we are going to walk through this book and see how God used Haggai to call Israel to consider their ways, rebuild the temple, and experience God's blessing again. This week, I introduce the book by looking at: The Setting - When the book was written  The Author - Who was the main figure of the book The Structure - What is the outline of the book The Point - Why God sent Haggai preaching to his people.
5/28/202412 minutes, 49 seconds
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181 - Concluding Remarks of Grace: Titus 3:12-15

Titus is like a three chapter IV pumping what it means to live by the grace of God for the glory of God into our spiritual veins.  And now we come to these concluding verses and think, “Okay, everything else makes sense why I should care, but what impact can these four salutary verses teach me?” On the surface, these verses are very much Paul’s concluding remarks to Titus. He’s finishing this letter out and has some final instructions for him. That is basically what these verses are about, but without straining at gnats and trying to swallow camels, I do believe these verses have more to offer than simply being Paul’s final concerns for Titus.  In these final words, these verses remind us that God's work is bigger than individuals, is about far more than us, and that we are not alone in this.
5/15/202413 minutes, 9 seconds
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180 - Emphasizing Good and Shunning Bad: Titus 3:8-11

We are marching toward the end of Paul’s letter to Titus and in the second to last section, Paul presses deeper into Titus' role as pastor. These four verses have a twofold purpose:  Titus was to challenge God’s people to maintain good works and do everything necessary to guard against those things that would prevent them from doing good works. thisministry: 1. Emphasize maintaining good works 2. Avoid foolish talk 3. Reject willing heretics
5/7/202415 minutes, 55 seconds
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179 - Treat Unbelievers with Gospel Grace: Titus 3:3-7

Titus 3:1-7 describes how believers at to glorify God in an ungodly world. We are to be submissive to the government and kind to all men (1-2). Verses 3-7 answer the question of why? Titus 3:3-7 answers this question - Why should I treat unbelievers in the way verses 1-2 describe? Paul gives us two Gospel realities to remember:  Remember that you were just like them (3) - They are sinners  Remember that you are saved by grace (4-7) - They need the Gospel 
4/30/202419 minutes, 3 seconds
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178 - Who are you looking at for the assurance of salvation?

Whenever someone talks about the assurance of salvation, it’s like having a blank final exam placed in front of us. If we get the true/false questions right and maybe hit the multiple choice ones, we can really know that we’re saved.  If we look at ourselves, we will never be truly assured.  We can always see faults, insufficiencies, and failures in us, therefore, we must look to someone far better. We must behold Jesus Christ.   We must set our current, subjective experience of assurance against the objective work of Christ. 
4/23/202415 minutes, 2 seconds
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177 - A Faithful God and a Faithful Life: A Conversation with Curtis Haizlip (my Pawpaw)

We often learn how to navigate this journey by hearing from those who are a few steps further on the journey than we are. In this week's conversation episode, I interview my grandpa to discuss how he has learned the faithfulness of God through his life. We take a journey through his life. From salvation and rededication to church to work and family to finishing well. I also ask him about what he would like for those earlier in our race to know. I hope that you will listen to this episode to learn from a faithful man about how to live for a faithful God.
4/15/202429 minutes, 43 seconds
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176 - Living for God's Glory in an Ungodly World: Titus 3:1-2

How do we live like Christians in an ungodly society? Titus 3:1-2 is here to give us a pesky reminder of what it looks like. It looks like submission to the government, refusing to be furious, and showing gentleness to all men. It is living towards others knowing that you have tasted the kindness of God in the Gospel.
4/9/202419 minutes
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175 - Christ's Work In Our Everyday Lives: Titus 2:14-15

The grace-taught life sputters to a stop unless it is centered on the finished and continued work of Christ.  Do you want to stop being offended when someone looks at you the wrong way? Do you want to meditate on God’s Word day and night?  Do you want to live in earnest hope for Christ’s return? Titus 2:14-15 shows how Christ's person and work connects to the rest of our lives as believers. In this episode we see how Christ's work is the foundation of both our (1) Salvation and (2) Sanctification. He gave Himself to redeem and purify us.
4/2/202415 minutes, 2 seconds
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174 - Christ, the Curse, and the Cross

Sin, curse, and death. This was Adam’s problem and it’s our problem as well. Everything bad we see in the world is because of the curse because of sin. Because of sin, we are condemned before God and destined to eternity apart from Him in Hell. It’s bad here and it just gets worse. If the Bible stopped in Genesis 3, we would be ruined.  Yet, the Bible doesn't stop there. God promises a redeemer in Genesis 3:15 and this redeemer would be a curse-reverser by becoming the curse for us. Jesus reversed the curse by going all the way to become the curse. There are depths to this we cannot unpack here, but let us strive to see the big point. In this Easter week, as we remember the cross, we are remembering when Jesus went all the way to be our Savior. 
3/26/202413 minutes, 40 seconds
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173 - Do You Anticipate Christ's Return? (and why you should): Titus 2:13

God's grace in Jesus teaches us to be healthy Christians in how we think, what we do, and who we are. To live this way, we must embrace the two-sided coin of Titus 2:11-15 - denying ungodliness and looking for Christ's return. We examined the first side last week. This week, we see how eagerly anticipating Christ's return is necessary for every believer in Titus 2:13. I address the way we often look to Christ's return (with indifference, inconvenience, or unbelief). We also see what our heart posture should be for His return. Finally, we will see why this is necessary for our lives as believers. Eager anticipation of Christ's return is necessary for every Christian.
3/19/202414 minutes, 51 seconds
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172 - Taught by Grace (Part One): Titus 2:11-15

Titus 2:11-15 is the grounds and motivation of everything Paul has commanded and will command Titus to do in this letter. This is the high point of the letter. It is the center of it. It is what drives the entire letter. Grace has appeared to us in Jesus and because He has come to save us and change, there is a way we are now to live. 
3/12/202421 minutes, 51 seconds
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171 - The Beauty of the Church (Part Two): Titus 2:1-10

The beauty of the church is expressed by who God's people are and how they live. Titus 2:1-10 details how Christians can live counter-cultural lives that put God's beauty on display. This week, we finish our study of this text. We will see how young women, young men, pastors, and servants represent Christ in an ungodly world. Paul details a life that is culturally-shocking, but God-honoring in these verses.
3/5/202420 minutes, 13 seconds
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170 - The Beauty of the Church (Part One): Titus 2:1-10

Even more than the composition of the church, the church is beautiful because of the way those in the church are to live. This week, we come to part one of our study in Titus 2:1-10. These verses are all about how every individual in the church is to live in accordance with God’s Word to show off the beauty of God’s work and word. This week we will see: How older saints reflect the beauty of God Three key observations about the importance of churches being intergenerational
2/27/202417 minutes, 59 seconds
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169 - The Story of Amazing Grace: Ephesians 2:1-10

(We will back in Titus next week, but this week, I wanted to remind you of God's amazing grace as seen in Ephesians 2:1-10). Every believer’s testimony of salvation is different. If you add names and faces to the story of God’s grace, the testimonies may be slightly or drastically different. grace We’re going to see this story of resurrection in three parts: Who we were (1-3) - We were dead and bound in sin What God did (4-7) - He made us alive with Christ Why God did it (8-10) - He made us alive to receive glory in our salvation and sanctification. 
2/20/202424 minutes, 37 seconds
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168 - The Danger of False Teaching: Titus 1:10-16

False teachers have existed in every age of the church. From those who deny the deity of Christ to those who deny the humanity of Christ. From those who add works to salvation and those who say the saved aren’t to do any work after salvation. From the first century to the middle ages to the 21st century, false teachers have always abounded.  This was true in Crete, which is one of the reasons Paul wrote to Titus, and it is true today. The Question is - what should we think about false teachers? How are we to respond to error in the pulpit? Paul shows Titus how he was to respond and by seeing this, we will learn how we can respond as well. 
2/6/202418 minutes, 59 seconds
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167 - Pastor Material: Titus 1:5-9

We do similar things with the men we think should be pastoring and shepherding our churches. What makes someone “pastor-material?” When Paul told Titus to ordain certain men to be pastors, he didn’t give him a list of leadership skills or speaking qualifications. He didn’t emphasize eloquence or appearance. Paul describes pastor-material by telling us what he must be and what he must do.  What He Must Be - He must be a man of character What He Must Do - He must hold fast to truth
1/23/202420 minutes, 1 second
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166 - A Grace-Filled Greeting: Titus 1:1-4

Dear (insert whoever’s name here).... If we write a letter, that’s how we will begin our letters. Our greetings are not that extravagant. Even in emails, our greetings consist of - Good afternoon, hope you’re doing well or something of that nature. Our greetings are drastically different from the way they would have written letters in the first century - especially the apostle Paul.  Titus 1:1-4 is a Gospel-centered and grace-filled greeting. It introduces us to who we will be reading from and what his heartbeat is over the next few chapters. We will see: Paul's Identity (1a) Paul's Goal (1b) Paul's Hope (2) Paul's Commission (3) Paul's Son (4)
1/16/202418 minutes, 4 seconds
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165 - Titus: Healthy Churches and Healthy Christians

The book of Titus functions as a health report for pastors, Christians, and churches. Paul wrote this pastoral epistle to show Titus how to bring the churches in Crete from sickness to health. He showed him the kind of pastors that healthy churches have and the way that healthy churches live. The word sound is used for times in the letter and literally speaks of health and vitality. This book is all about sound doctrine. We see sound doctrine in the pulpit in 1:5-16 and sound doctrine in the congregation in 2:1-3:11. By examining this letter, we can better know what it looks like to be healthy Christians who are a part of healthy churches.
1/9/202411 minutes, 49 seconds
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164 - Gospel Rest for the New Year: Matthew 11:28-30

What if I told you that you don’t have to put the weight of the world on your shoulders? You don't have to live each day under the burden of hyper-productivity. You don't have to carry the weight of failing again, sinning again, and falling again. Instead, you can live each day resting in Jesus.  All we must do is hear and respond to the invitation of Jesus in Matthew 11:28-30.  Learning
1/2/202414 minutes, 54 seconds
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163 - How to Celebrate Christmas: Luke 2:15-20

At the heart of celebrating Christmas, we must celebrate Jesus. What does that look like? Forget all of the other ways that you will celebrate Christmas over the next few days for a moment and ask - will I celebrate Christ?  This text shows four ways that we should respond to the birth of Jesus.  Obey - Pursue after Jesus Christ. Declare - Proclaim the good news of Christ's birth. Think - Ponder the good news of Christ's birth. Praise - Praise God for what He has done.
12/22/202313 minutes, 51 seconds
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162 - The Greatest News Ever Told: Luke 2:8-14

Luke 2:1-7 details the birth of Jesus, but without verses 8-14 we don't know the significance of His birth. The angel appears to the shepherds that night to declare to them the good news of Jesus birth - A savior is born. The good news of Christmas is the greatest news ever told.
12/19/202315 minutes, 4 seconds
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161 - Hope is Born: Luke 2:1-7

The Christmas season is and should be filled with hope. However, it’s not because of a chubby dude squeezing into your chimney. It’s not because that special someone will meet you under the mistletoe. Frosty may be a jolly, happy soul, but he can neither thrill nor heal your soul. Rudolph, with his nose so bright may guide Santa’s sleigh, but he can’t light your way to hope.  Where is hope found? In a lowly manger, after a decree of a wicked ruler. The Savior is born and this is hope.
12/12/202314 minutes, 34 seconds
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160 - On Dancing, Dating, Golfing, and More: Q+A with Adam Rorrer

You submitted questions and we offered some answers. Adam Rorrer joined me for a Q+A episode. We seek to offer Biblical and edifying responses. We've got everything from serious questions to a Frozen reference to determining if dancing is a sin and everything in between. Timestamps for Questions: 3:00 - Contemporary Music versus Hymns 7:26 - What is worldliness? We define what the world is and how we can be transformed by thinking Biblically. 11:40 - How do you represent Christ in an ungodly work environment? 15:35 - How do you combat legalism/tradition in the church and in my own heart? 20:37 - How do you love up to your God-given potential? 23:34 - Is dancing a sin? 25:58 - How do you deal with the discouragement of dating? or when dating is not working out? 31:06 - Who is your favorite person in the Bible? Why do you like them? 35:20 - What is your why for ministry? 38:37 - What is your go-to coffee order? 39:30 - What is your favorite water? 40:35 - What is your favorite thing about each other? 42:16 - Who is the better golfer?
12/4/202345 minutes, 9 seconds
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159 - Our Shepherd Forever: Psalm 23:6

This Psalm has reminded us that the Lord is our sufficient, restoring, and faithful Shepherd for every step of the journey. He is with us when we’re deciding where to go to school, what job to have, and who to marry. He is with us when the company accepts you and the girl rejects you. This life is a journey and we need a Shepherd who is with us through every hill, valley, canyon, and tragedy. He is and He will be with us forever.  Verse 6 directs our gaze to this truth about the Lord - He will be our Shepherd forever. Verse 6 of Psalm 23 stops looking at what the Shepherd has done or is doing and looks to the future. This is David’s emphatic conclusion, based upon the character of His Shepherd about what the future holds. Verse 6 declares that He will be our Shepherd forever in two ways:  He Pursues Us - For the Rest of our Life (6a)  He Brings us Home - In the House of the Lord forever (6b) 
11/28/202316 minutes, 59 seconds
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158 - Our Shepherd Through the Valley: Psalm 23:4-5

Every day is not a clear sky, the sun is shining 65 degrees. There are times when we walk into the valley of the shadow of death. A bad doctor’s report enters your inbox. That car T-bones your daughter out of nowhere. He decides that he doesn’t want to go through with the wedding. Anything can take you from green pastures and tumble you into the valley of the shadow of death. Your Shepherd is good, but that doesn’t mean there will never be bad times.  The only thing we know about the valley of the shadow of death is that we will walk into it. You will go into this valley of deep darkness.  How do we navigate it? How do we make it through? We have a good shepherd who is near. He is with us when we are in the valley.
11/21/202317 minutes, 33 seconds
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157 - Our Restoring Shepherd: Psalm 23:2-3

How are you? This is a question we get asked on a regular basis and it is a question we ask on a regular basis. What is the typical response? “I’m doing good, how are you?” we may say we’re doing well or alright. The truth, however, is that we’re not always doing great.  There are days, weeks, and even months at a time when we are mentally exhausted, physically tired, and spiritually downcast. It’s all part of this journey we are on that Psalm 23 describes for us. The journey doesn’t just have hyper-productive days when papers are being written, yards are being mowed, and books are being read. It also includes days where your brain is still on dial-up in a wireless world.  We’re not always at our best, but our sufficient Shepherd is always at his best. He’s always at His best and because He is, He is our restoring Shepherd. We see this in verses 2 and 3 of Psalm 23. He is our Restoring Shepherd in two ways.  He refreshes the weary (2)  He restores the wayward (3)
11/14/202317 minutes, 57 seconds
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156 - Our Sufficient Shepherd: Psalm 23:1

The life of every believer is a journey. It’s not like driving on an interstate where you hop on one exit and just drive until you reach your next exit. It’s more like starting in a distant forest and climbing to the top of a mountain. That journey is not straightforward. It has twists and turns, uphills and downhills, peaks and valleys. It would be nice if our lives were an immediate ascent from salvation to heaven, but that’s not the case. With all the twists and turns, predators and traps, how does anyone survive?  How does anyone make it through this journey?  We’re on this journey, but we are not alone. The Shepherd of Psalm 23, Good Shepherd of John 10, and Chief Shepherd of First Peter 5 is with you. The one who fed 5,000, turned water to wine, and journeyed with his disciples down dusty roads, green pastures, and into dark valleys is your Shepherd and He is with you.  We’re going to study this Psalm over the next four episodes and behold the Shepherd of this Psalm.  Our Sufficient Shepherd (1) Our Restoring Shepherd (2-3)  Our Shepherd through the Valley (4)  Our Shepherd Forever (5-6) 
11/7/202315 minutes, 35 seconds
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155 - Worshiping God When You Don't Understand: Romans 11:33-36

Taught by Grace is back after a brief hiatus! We will beginning a new series over the next few weeks, but before that, we are exploring this wonderful doxology in Romans 11:33-36. This text calls us to worship the God we cannot comprehend. He is far greater than we can imagine, therefore, He deserves the greatest praise that we can offer. Join me as we walk through this text.
10/3/202320 minutes, 53 seconds
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154 - Triumphing over Covetousness with Contentment: Exodus 20:17

The Tenth Commandment is all about desire. Our hearts are prone to wander. They seek to be satisfied by the stuff of this world, rather than by being content in our gracious, good Heavenly Father. In this episode, we explore the Tenth Commandment by: Giving a Biblical overview of desire Defining how, what, and why we covet Presenting a solution to our covetous hearts - contentment This commandment is about more than wanting your friend's house or body, it's about whether or not you will trust God above all. It's a matter of our faith in our Father.
9/12/202319 minutes, 56 seconds
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153 - Why Lying isn't so Little or White: Exodus 20:16

A little white lie is not a little white sin to God. He despises lying. He hates both the lying tongue and the false witness that speaks lies. So then, to break the ninth commandment is to do something that God hates. Satan deceived Eve in the garden by lying to her about the heart and Word of God. In John, Jesus called Satan the father of lies. To be a liar is to be as Satan-like as you can be and as un-God-like as you can be.  God is not indifferent about lying. His Word is not indifferent about lying. You and I should not be indifferent about lying. Let's examine the ninth commandment to see what is meant by bearing false witness and how we can be a people of truth instead.
8/29/202318 minutes, 9 seconds
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152 - From Stealing Hands to Generous Hearts: Exodus 20:15

When you think about thieves, robbers, and burglars, you probably think about ski masks, crowbars, and getaway cars. It may bring up scenes of bank or house robberies. You may think of Marv and Al attempting to rob the McCallisters or Robin Hood stealing from the rich and giving to the poor. Theft and stealing bring up these fancy escapades or intense moments in our minds. We think of thieves and robbers as being among the lowest of the low in society and as a group entirely out there.  So you, like me, may wonder, why do I need to listen to an episode on the eighth commandment? Exodus 20:14 still says “Thou shalt not steal.” We may think “Okay, I’ve definitely got this one down. I can skip onto the next commandment.” You may not be robbing banks, stealing cars, and swindling grandmas so why would you need to listen to this? Better said - Why should you want to listen to this?  A couple of reasons.  First, it is the Word of God and all Scripture is given for our teaching and help (2 Tim. 3:16-17. This is obvious, but it cannot be overstated. We study the whole bible because we need the whole Bible to glorify God as His children.  Second, we must remember that the Ten Commandments are far deeper and more pervasive than we realize. Every one is about exactly what they say, but they also have much more to say.  Third, the section we are in shows us how to relate to our neighbor. Therefore, if we will love our neighbor for God’s glory we must know this commandment.  Finally, and most important for this question, every negative commandment has a positive counterpart.  So, we’re going to explore Exodus 20:15 from this angle - How can we obey this commandment?  We must know how this commandment is broken  We must know Jesus as the perfect keeper of this commandment.  We must know that this commandment is about doing good to others. 
8/22/202320 minutes, 35 seconds
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151 - Jesus' Prescription for our Worry: Matthew 6:25-34

(A brief interlude from the 10 Commandments. I'll be back next week with the eighth commandment.) Hakuna Matata! It means no worries for the rest of your days. At least, that’s what Timone and Pumba said in The Lion King. They boldly declared that it was possible to forget all of your worries and live a carefree life. Just ignore the trouble. Don’t pay attention to what worries you have. Sure, Simba you may be king soon, but just forget all of that and live with no worries.  If we’re honest, that kind of life sounds nice. Wouldn’t it be delightful to lay aside all of our worries? Worry surrounds us and even engulfs us at times. Is it even possible? In Matthew 6:25-34, Jesus declares that it is possible. It's possible to live without worry, not because forget our problems but because we trust God with all of our needs. We must remember who our Father is and what our purpose is if we will live a life free from worry.
8/15/202322 minutes, 2 seconds
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150 - How We Commit Adultery in Action and Desire: Exodus 20:14

We love beauty. Beauty is displayed in nature, art, and people. It’s beautiful to watch as the sun sets behind the mountains in Western America. It’s beautiful to see a painting or sculpture that someone spent years perfecting. It’s beautiful to hear the laugh of a young child as her father lifts her into His arms. Beauty is a wonderful reality, but beauty can be tarnished. The Seventh Commandment shows us what beauty tarnished looks like in God's eyes. This week, we explore the Seventh Commandment to see How it is broken in the fullest sense The ways we violate and distort it The heart of the matter with our sinful heart We conclude by seeing that the need for our impurity is a pure Savior - Jesus Christ!
7/26/202319 minutes, 55 seconds
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149 - God's Sovereignty in our Suffering: Genesis 50:14-21

There are three truths we must hold to in our suffering: God is sovereign, wise, and good. If we know these, we can trust God amid cancer, loss, and death. This week, we take a brief break from the Ten Commandments to dive into the end of the story for Joseph and his brothers. Joseph had experienced great suffering and pain, but by the end of it, He knew that God meant it for good. God was the one who sent the storm and redeemed the storm. We need to hear the message this text preaches to us because Joseph's God is our God.
7/15/202329 minutes, 10 seconds
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148 - Thou Shalt Not Kill: Exodus 20:13

Thou Shalt Not Kill - This command requires no caveat or disclaimer. It prohibits all murder. However, this commandment has far more to teach us than just that. This commandment is broken by pulling the trigger, but it is broken before that by having anger in your heart. The truth is, we have all been murderers at heart. In this episode on the sixth commandment, we start at the top of the ladder, seeing murder for what it is. Then, we go to the heart of the commandment in Matthew 6. Finally, we will see how we can actively obey it by desiring and doing the best for our neighbor.
7/4/202315 minutes, 48 seconds
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147 - Honor your Dad and Mom: Exodus 20:12

God does not allow us to live in the realm of spiritual elitism while ignoring the flesh and blood around us. Christianity is not an ethereal religion. It is tangible. It is real. It is about how we speak to, live with, and treat each other. The final six commandments teach us that loving God requires that we love others.  The first four commandments declare “Love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, soul, and strength.” The final six declare “Love thy neighbor as thyself.” Better said, you cannot love God with all of your heart if you don’t give your heart to your neighbor.  The first of these neighbor-centered commandments begin with the first neighbor you ever had - your parents. 
6/29/202319 minutes, 34 seconds
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146 - To Sabbath or Not To Sabbath?: Exodus 20:8-11

The Fourth Commandment is the most debated and misunderstood in our day. What are we to do with it and what is it all about? We will examine the Sabbath day from Exodus to Genesis to the New Testament to our lives today. Though the stringent details are no longer applied to us, the overarching principles should affect the way we live.
6/20/202323 minutes, 13 seconds
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145 - How We Use and Misuse the Name Above Every Name: Exodus 20:7

In this episode, we explore the third commandment by: Seeing the importance of names in general Examining that by taking His name, we identify as His people Defining what it means to misuse God's name intentionally or carelessly Challenging us to hallow God's name with our lips and lives God's name matters more than any other name, therefore, we must care about how we use His name above every other name. It should be the desire of our heart and movements of our hands to use His name rightly. It should be our desire to live out what the first petition of the Lord’s Prayer is - Hallowed be thy name. Instead of blaspheming, misusing, and misrepresenting His name, we should hallow His name.
6/13/202322 minutes, 19 seconds
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144 - How We Must Worship God: Exodus 20:4-6

The nation of Israel was notorious for making, worshiping, and serving graven images. In fact, later in Exodus, Israel was making a golden calf to worship as their gods while Moses was receiving the law from God. From groves to high places to Baal to various idols, Israel was a repeat offender of the Second Commandment.  Yet, God prohibited all of that in the Second Commandment. At first, we may think that this commandment is a restatement of the first - Have no other gods before me. It is an extension of the first commandment, but not merely a restatement. God already told them to have no other gods before him at all. So what is this about?  Kevin Deyoung summarized it by saying: “If the first commandment is against worshiping the wrong God, the second commandment is against worshiping God in the wrong way.” The Second Commandment is all about the way we worship God. Israel’s God and our God is not like any other god. He is not like any other god, therefore, He must not be worshiped the way other gods are worshiped. He is far bigger, better, and greater. He is omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent. This God must be worshiped for the God that He truly is!
6/6/202323 minutes, 35 seconds
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143 - The Biggest Commandment: Exodus 20:1-3

The first command asserts that God is God. Since He is God, then we must reverence and honor Him as God. His supremacy in our lives reflects His supremacy over all things. Culture can be radically ignored when the greatness and goodness of God is totally embraced. God gave this command first to orient us with Him as the first priority.  The first commandment is the commandment. There is much to be learned from this command and we’re going to learn it from three different angles.  Explanatory - What does it mean?  Doctrinally - What does it teach us about the nature of God?  Practically - How does it apply to our lives? 
5/30/202319 minutes, 47 seconds
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142 - The Ten Commandments: An Introductory Episode

You hear the word commandment and begin to cringe a bit. Oh yeah, I like hearing about the cross and resurrection, but do we really have to talk about the Ten Commandments? They’ve been fulfilled in Jesus anyways, haven’t they? Yes, Christ has fulfilled it, but He didn’t destroy it. There is still much to learn and much to be applied to us from these.  At the outset, however, I hope to remove any notion that these are just a stodgy, cold set of rules and regulations. That God is trying to take away all of the fun from our lives. The Ten Commandments do not enslave God’s people. They don’t attach a ball and chain to our feet, keeping us away from freedom. In reality, the Ten Commandments come from a gloriously, holy God who had redeemed Israel from bondage and wanted them to live as His peculiar people.  If we’re going to get all we can out of studying these, we must be properly introduced to them. So, this week, I want to introduce them by showing you what we must know about God, why we should study the Ten Commandments, and how we will go about studying them.
5/22/202317 minutes
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141 - What we Learned in Bible College with Jonathan Snow

Jonathan Snow and I started at Calvary Baptist Bible College four years ago. On the day of our graduation, we sat around a mic and reflected on some lessons we've learned during our time at Calvary. There are a wide array of lessons mentioned in this episode: Suffering - Jon speaks about God's sufficient grace through his wife's sickness and recovery in 2021. The greatness of God - We've both learned that God is bigger and better than we can imagine The Sufficiency of Scripture - We both graduate more confident than ever in God's Word. In addition to this, you will hear two friends reflect on God's grace in our lives. We mention everything from time management to being overwhelmed by assignments to the brevity of life. If you listen to the end, you'll even hear about our funniest moments from college. One includes Jon joking and the other includes Jon falling asleep.
5/16/202347 minutes, 41 seconds
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140 - Why An Ugly Cross Is So Beautiful

The cross is fundamentally not beautiful. The cross was the Roman version of a gas chamber, electric chair, or any other executionary tool. How could that be beautiful? Yet, Christians sing hymns with words like “I will cherish the old rugged cross.” Cherishing an ugly cross seems like a foolish notion, doesn’t it?  No one is going to say “I will cherish the sword that cuts off a criminal’s head!” No one would say “I will boast in the electric chair!” But that’s precisely what Christians are saying when we rejoice in the cross.  What makes this instrument of death beautiful? It isn’t beautiful because of the cross itself, but because of what happened on the cross. We cherish the old rugged cross because the greatest event in history happened on the cross - God the Son took the place of sinners and died for our sins.
4/6/20239 minutes, 56 seconds
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139 - The Thief on the Cross: Luke 23:39-43

What did the thief do to make him worthy of Jesus saying “Today, thou shalt be with me in paradise.” He didn’t have anything to give Jesus.  He couldn’t get baptized.  He didn’t have theological jargon.  The only thing this man had was faith in the man on the middle cross. He knew that the one there was totally different from everyone else. He turned to Jesus alone for salvation and Jesus alone was enough.  Friends, this is all that matters still. The second saying of Jesus points us to the sufficient, free grace of our Savior. The thief on the cross reminds us that our salvation is not about us. It’s about Jesus! He got in because Jesus received him. He got in because Jesus died for him. He got in because Jesus would bring him in. This is the only way we get in as well. 
3/22/202314 minutes, 48 seconds
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138 - Father, Forgive Them: Luke 23:34

We are just a few weeks out from Easter Sunday. I hadn’t originally planned on doing an Easter series, but my attention has recently been drawn to the seven sayings of Jesus on the cross. I hope to help you prepare your heart for Easter by studying these sayings over the next several weeks. On the cross, you see the love of God and the love of Christ in what Jesus did. We learn the depth of His love by seeing how Jesus lived and died for us. However, that’s not the only way we see His love for sinners. Jesus didn’t say much while He was on the cross, but what He said reveals much about the kind of Savior He is. He only spoke seven times, but these seven statements show us much about who Jesus is. We see His heart for those who hate Him in Him praying, “Father, forgive them”. We examine this statement in this week's episode. 
3/14/202314 minutes, 27 seconds
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137 - This is Our Father's World: Matthew 6:13

Why did Jesus command us to pray what He commanded us to pray?  Why do we pray what the Lord's Prayer teaches us to pray?  We pray it because of what the last phrase says - For thine is the kingdom, the power, and the glory, forever, amen.  This last phrase shows us two reasons why we pray this way: It all belongs to Him It all belongs to Him forever! We pray this prayer because this is our Father’s world.  The Lord’s Prayer shocks us back ] into reality. It reminds us again and again that we are praying to an all-glorious, all-wonderful God and that this God is our Father! The kingdom, power, and glory belong to Him forever. We pray this way because this is our Father's World!
3/7/202315 minutes, 28 seconds
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136 - Bringing Our Needs to the Father: Matthew 6:11-13

Jesus teaches us to pray for our needs and shows us what our needs are. These last three petitions teach us that we are to bring our needs to the Father and show us what our most fundamental needs are. Jesus taught us to pray for these things to show us that these are what we most truly need. So what does the child of God need? What requests does our Father want us to make? For Him to Meet our Daily Needs - “Give us this day our daily bread.” For Him to Forgive our Regular Sins - “Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors” For Him to Keep us from Sinful Situations - “And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil” Your Father wants you to bring everything to Him in prayer, whether small or insignificant. The same Father who calls us to pray for His name to be hallowed, kingdom to come, and will to be done is the same Father who wants us to recognize our need for His grace to make it through the morning. And He delights in meeting us in these most basic needs.
2/28/202319 minutes, 35 seconds
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135 - The Kingdom and Will of God: Matthew 6:10

The Lord’s Prayer begins with a petition for God’s name to be hallowed. God receiving the glory, honor, and worth He deserves is to be the goal of our praying and living because it is the goal of everything. However, we are immediately confronted by a hurdle we must jump over to understand this. His name is not hallowed in the earth as it should be. God’s name is hallowed when His kingdom comes and will is done. However, what are these about anyways? Join me in this week’s episode as we explain and explore these truths.
2/14/202319 minutes, 16 seconds
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134 - Hallowed Be Thy Name: Matthew 6:9

What should be the priority of our prayers?  What should be the priority of our lives?  The priority of our praying and living must be the glory of God.  Jesus sets this as the priority in the model prayer. The priority is God and His glory.  Jesus wants the priority of our praying to be the glory of God because the glory of God must be the priority of our lives. We pray hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come, and thy will be done because God's glory is the priority. 
2/7/202315 minutes, 55 seconds
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133 - Our Father: Matthew 6:9

Before Jesus gets into the what and why of prayer, He is clear about who we are praying to. We are not praying to a distant deity or weak person, but to a good and glorious Heavenly Father. This is where we must begin in our study through the Lord's Prayer. Our prayer lives are often weak, anemic, and cold because we don't view God as we ought. This week, I show you two truths about who we are praying to from Matthew 6:6.  God the Father is our Father.  God the Father is our God.  We must know and be reminded of who we are praying to again and again. 
1/31/202315 minutes, 24 seconds
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132 - An Introduction to the Lord's Prayer

If you are a son or daughter of God, you know that you need to pray, need to pray, and do pray. However, if we’re honest, most of us feel pretty unremarkable about our praying. We don’t pray fervently enough, regularly enough, or enough at all. Prayer becomes a burden upon many shoulders instead of being the means to lay burdens at the feet of our Father. Perhaps, we may even feel like it’s pointless to continue praying when you compare how little you pray compared to how much those stalwarts of church history prayed. There is good news! This doesn’t have to be the case. You can pray. You can grow in prayer. We need to learn to pray. If that is the case, then we need someone to teach us how to pray! Who is better to teach us how to pray than the Lord Jesus Christ Himself? If Jesus was sitting in the room with you, teaching you how to pray, wouldn’t you listen? If you heard that He would be giving a sermon at a local church about how to pray, wouldn’t you do anything you could to get there? Of course, we would! But we don’t have to have Jesus sitting across from us or standing before us because He has already taught us how to pray in His Word. You can learn how to pray from Jesus Himself. We learn how to pray from Him in the Lord's Prayer
1/24/202316 minutes, 56 seconds
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131 - How To Get More Out Of Your Daily Bible Reading

The Bible is our daily bread. We need to eat up every single day. If it is our daily spiritual nourishment, how do we get more out of it every day? I think getting more out of our daily Bible reading begins by approaching our daily Bible reading well. In this episode, I look at some very practical ways that we can get more out of our God's Word on a regular basis. 
1/17/202318 minutes, 7 seconds
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130 - Be a Bible Christian in 2023

I know many have a re-invigorated desire to read, study, and know God’s Word, so I’ve decided to take a couple of episodes at the beginning of this year and speak to you on the priority and practice of Bible reading and study in our lives as Christians. This week, I want to remind you about what the Bible is. If we have the correct view of the Bible, we will be moved to read, study, and live the Bible more. You may be a faithful, fluctuating, or frustrated Bible reader. Regardless of where you are, I hope this episode will move you closer to God through His word this year.  In this episode, I offer four reminders about the Bible:  We must remember that the Bible is the very Word of God We need the Bible We can and should delight in the Bible  We must read the Bible to know God. 
1/10/202319 minutes, 21 seconds
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129 - A Christmas Reminder: Hear the Good News Once Again

We have heard the Christmas story hundreds of times before, do we really need to listen to it again? In a brief episode this week, I want to remind you to listen to the Christmas story again.  It's not about a decree from Caesar, a couple going to Bethlehem, or even that there was a babe lying in a manger. It is about the babe in the manger being the Savior of the world. The good news the angels declared then is the good news we must hear again now. It's the news we need in our dark nights, discouraged moments, and failures. It's the news we needed when we were saved and the news we need now as believers. We never grow past our need to hear the story so I urge you - hear the good news again and worship Christ again! 
12/20/202210 minutes, 54 seconds
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128 - With Each Other: James 5:13-20

James 5:13-20 describe how believers are to be involved in each other's lives. We pray for one another, rejoice with one another, confess to one another, and restore one another. There is no room for believers to live the Christian life alone.  There are many ways you could outline this section. I think you could take verses 13-15, 16-18, and 19-20 and create three separate studies. As you know (whether gratefully or grudgingly), I have no problem spending 20 minutes on one verse, but I didn’t think that would be the best way to approach this one. Instead, I’d like to show you the main point of these verses expressed in a couple of ways. First, let’s see the main point - Believers are to be involved in each other’s lives - problems and all. A true church isn’t composed of faultless and sinless people. It’s filled with sinners and sufferers. Because of that, we must not abandon each other. Instead, we care for each other in those problems. Second, let’s see how the main point is expressed. Verses 13-18 describe (very generally) that believers must pray for one another. Then, verses 19-20 detail how believers must restore one another. This is not a flawless outline, but I think it is helpful as we wrap our arms around this somewhat unfamiliar passage of Scripture.
12/13/202226 minutes, 40 seconds
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127 - Just Tell the Truth: James 5:12

There's a goldmine for us at the bottom of James 5:12, however, we have to dig a little for it.  Join me as we dig out the truth that God has laid at the bottom of this verse. We will answer these questions:  What does it mean to swear?  Why did James and Jesus prohibit making oaths?  How do we reconcile that with other events and passages in the Bible?  What are we to do instead?  James 5:12 calls us to be people of truth in the everyday routine of life. Instead of needing to make oaths about anything and everything, we simply live in the truth at all times and before all people.
12/6/202216 minutes, 25 seconds
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126 - Patience in Suffering: James 5:7-11

Suffering is routine. It’s something that we face and deal with in diverse ways and at different times. It ranges from trials that aren’t really that big to difficulties that are massive. From the nuisance of a runny nose to the devastation of a cancer diagnosis. From a bad breakup to the unexpected death of a loved one. From not getting into the college of your dreams to losing the job you have been working for years. From someone cracking a joke about your Christian faith to being beaten, imprisoned, and martyred for the faith. While there is an incredible spectrum of suffering there (being martyred for your faith is far worse than a runny nose), the truth is that each of those things I described is difficult when we face them. So then, the question is what attitude are we to have in all of our sufferings? In episode 104, we saw that we’re to rejoice in trials! This time, we see another part of what our response should be in suffering. Very simply - We are urged not to give up in James 5:7-11.
11/29/202218 minutes, 15 seconds
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125 - Money, Money, Money: James 5:1-6

James has a specific message for the ungodly rich men described in three words - Misery, Futility, and Calamity. However, this message isn’t just for them. There are important truths for us to receive as well!
11/22/202217 minutes, 12 seconds
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124 - Thinking of the Future Biblically: James 4:13-17

In this week's episode, we dive into James 4:13-17 to examine this passage and answer the big questions that it raises about the future, decisions, and life in general.  First - Is it sinful to plan for the future? Is it sinful to think about what college I will go to? Is it sinful to consider what job I’d like to have? Is it sinful to think about where I want to live and who I want to marry? Is it sinful to think about retirement? Further, verse 14 would make us ask another question - should I plan at all? I don’t know what’s going to happen tomorrow. I don’t know how long my life will be, but I know it’s going to be short. James 4:13-17 shows us that there is a Biblical and godly way to look into the future and it is centered around one phrase - "If the Lord will." 
11/8/202218 minutes, 49 seconds
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123 - How are Christians supposed to talk about each other?: James 4:11-12

If I asked you to give me a list of Biblical commands, I imagine that you could come up with a pretty long and thorough list. However, I doubt the command that we are looking at in this week’s episode would make it onto your list. Did you know that there is a specific command about how believers are to talk about other believers? James 4:11-12 ushers this command to us. It is very clear - don't speak evil about each other. What does all of that mean? Why are we commanded to do that? What are we to do instead? Join me as we continue studying this wonderful book of James.
11/1/202216 minutes, 20 seconds
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122 - Coming Back to God: James 4:6-10

After a brief stop in the book of Jude last week, we return to our study through the book of James. This time, we finish up the section on spiritual adultery in James 4:1-10. James clearly showed in verses 1-6 that our sin breaks our communion with God, now, he shows us what the answer is. He shows us that path back to God from sin. It's not a path of glory, but it is necessary and in the end, God promises to lift us up!
10/26/202215 minutes, 18 seconds
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121 - Keep Going, God Is Keeping You: Jude 24-25

This week, we take a brief pause from our study in James to dive into the wonderful doxology at the end of Jude. In this, reminds us that God is able to keep us and finish us, therefore, we praise Him alone! May the Lord encourage you in this.
10/18/202217 minutes, 23 seconds
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120 - Spiritual Adultery: James 4:1-5

This week, we dive into the first half of James' fierce attack on the worldliness within this congregation of believers in James 4:1-10. He is like a spiritual surgeon, directing and diagnosing the reason for the wars and fighting among these believers. That was merely the surface problem. There was something far deeper - idolatry. They had become spiritual adulterers.  As we look at this text in this week's episode, you will see just how serious this sin is. It isn't to be explained or defended. Rather, it is to be seen and repented of. This is serious business and we must be keenly aware of it as well! 
10/11/202215 minutes, 38 seconds
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119 - Wisdom from Above: James 3:17-18

All true wisdom begins with God and proceeds from Him. It begins with Him. Psalm 111:10, Proverbs 1:7, and 9:10 all describe how the fear of God is the beginning of wisdom and knowledge. The Bible holds nothing back. The only wisdom that makes a person truly wise begins and ends with God. Here’s the point - you will never be truly wise unless the wisdom that you have comes from God. Therefore, if you have any desire at all to be wise, you must have His wisdom. So what does His wisdom look like and how can we get it? After detailing the heart, origin, and evidence of sinful wisdom in verses 14-16, James transitions to describe God’s wisdom to us in verses 17 and 18. These verses reveal just how contradictory God’s wisdom is to the world’s wisdom. James 3:17-18 [17] But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. [18] And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace. We’ll divide these two verses about Godly wisdom into three parts: What it is - First pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be intreated, full of mercy and good fruits What it’s not - without partiality, and without hypocrisy What it Produces - And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace
10/4/202214 minutes, 8 seconds
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118 - The World’s Wisdom: James 3:13-16

Who is really wise? James 3:13-18 asks this question and answers it by showing that people may be wise according to two different standards - the world or God. The world has wisdom and God has wisdom. Throughout this passage, James never says that the world doesn’t have wisdom, but he’s very clear that it isn’t God’s wisdom. He puts a clear divider between the world’s wisdom and God’s wisdom. We need to know the difference because we have wisdom according to one of these two standards. Self-exalting, pride-inflating wisdom is not of God. It may be a kind of wisdom, but it is the wisdom of this world, the flesh, and the Devil. You may think you’re wise, but if your wisdom proceeds from a heart set on self-exaltation, it isn’t God’s wisdom. Rather, it is the kind of wisdom that is the exact opposite of God’s wisdom.
9/28/202212 minutes, 28 seconds
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117 - Oh, Be Careful Little Tongue What You Say (Part 2): James 3:3-12

Thomas Watson penned this most pointed quote on the necessity of guarding our speech: “God has set a double fence before the tongue, the teeth, and the lips, to teach us to be wary that we offend not with our tongue.” Now, why is that the case? Why did our tongues need to be put under maximum security? Why did our tongues get placed behind the lip and teeth gates, as Watson called it? This week, we continue our study through the book of James and come to the second half of James’ extensive section on the tongue. We will see in today's episode that the tongue is capable of incredible danger and must be set on constant guard for God's glory. 
9/20/202214 minutes, 14 seconds
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116 - Oh, Be Careful Little Tongue What You Say (Part 1): James 3:3-12

Our little tongue is like the bridle that controls a horse, the rudder that directs a ship, and the spark that starts a fire. It is very small, but it can do untold damage.  A little gossip here turns into a wildfire of division and strife. A little comment towards a person becomes a lifetime of resentment and bitterness. A little flirtatious remark turns into a sinful relationship and a ruined marriage. Churches are split, marriages are ruined, relationships are destroyed, and people are hurt because of this little tongue. Our little tongues make a great impact and we must be aware of it. It may be small, but it can do incredible damage. But we don’t realize just how big our little tongue is. We think it’s just a little cursing, gossip, or slander. We think it’s just a little crude comment here or innuendo there. Our tongue may be little, but our speech's impact is not.
9/6/202211 minutes, 35 seconds
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115 - So, You Want to Teach?: James 3:1-2

James 3:1-12 can be summarized in a phrase from a children’s song, “Oh, be careful little tongue what you say.” This is true of our speech in general as we’ll see in next week’s episode, but it is also especially true for those who stand and teach or preach to the people of God, which is where James begins this comprehensive section on the tongue. This section on the tongue begins with a specific and solemn warning towards those who speak in the church. Before James addresses the nefarious nature of the tongue in general, he directs the reader's attention to the unique challenge of the tongue for those who are teachers. The Holy Spirit inspired James to begin this passage on the tongue by issuing a solemn warning to those who are known for speaking among believers.
8/30/202214 minutes, 40 seconds
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114 - Faith in Action (Part 2): James 2:14-26

What kind of faith do you have? James 2:14-26 teaches that true faith should move us to action.  At the heart of James' argument is a call for believers to have faith in action. If they don't, it's as worthless as telling a starving, freezing person "God bless you!" instead of buying them a meal and a coat. He argues again and again that faith without works is dead. It belongs in the morgue rather than in the sanctuary. To combat this false ideology that it is possible to have true faith and that faith does not move you to action (2:14), James deals with this through logical conclusions and Old Testament examples. This passage doesn't teach that works save us, but that our works reveal that we believe what we say we believe - as the examples of Abraham and Rahab show.
8/23/202217 minutes, 16 seconds
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113 - Faith in Action (Part 1): James 2:14-26

Today, we take the first step in studying James 2:14-26. It is one of the more difficult and important passages in the book of James, so we’ll examine it over the next two weeks. This week, I point out some important preliminary points and then get into the practical illustration James gives in verses 14-17.
8/16/202214 minutes, 43 seconds
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112 - Of Partiality, Prejudice, and Respect of Persons: James 2:1-13

We have varying reactions to different sins. We are angered by some sins, such as rape and abuse. Other sins, like abortion, we are broken over. We are appalled by adultery, murder, and all of those “big sins.” There are, however, some sins that we either don’t see as that bad or sinful at all. We so frequently engage in them that we have forgotten their true nature. And so many people do as well, so it can’t be that bad, right? One of these sins is clearly condemned in our text today - the sin of partiality. As James calls it, “respect of persons.” It is favoritism. Discrimination. It is to show favor to someone based upon their skin color, financial status, and education and to show unkindness to another because they don’t look quite as good as that person. We look for the one that is attractive and would look good in our churches and turn away from the one that doesn’t smell very good. We may justify this practice, thinking that it’s not so bad, but this text is clear, there is absolutely no room for partiality.
8/2/202220 minutes, 26 seconds
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111 - Pure Religion: James 1:26-27

Pure religion is the antithesis to the vain religion of this world. James 1:26-27 shows us that there is such a thing as pure religion and we must pursue it. Let me give you the bottom line up front - vain religion is concerned about appearance before men, but pure religion is concerned about appearance before God. Whether or not your religion is pure will be determined by whether or not you live for men or for God. We must abhor vain religion, but we must equally embrace pure religion. So, what is pure religion and how do we embrace it? James 1:26-27 provides the answer for us. Pure religion is revealed in three ways:  A controlled tongue  Selfless ministry  Personal Holiness
7/26/202215 minutes, 50 seconds
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110 - Hearers and Doers of the Word: James 1:19-25

The path to practical Christianity is guided by the light of God’s Word. If you want to live as God desires for you to live, you don’t need to seek out a special revelation, hear a voice from heaven, or have a tv preacher tell you what God’s will is. Instead, you simply need to live in obedience to the truth of God’s Word. You will never live as a believer should live without God’s Word guiding your steps, controlling your tongue, filling your mind, and transforming your life by the power of the Holy Spirit. We know that the life-transforming process of sanctification is God’s work in us. We, however, have an important responsibility in this. We must be doers of the Word and not hearers only. In today’s episode, we come to one of the most familiar passages in the book of James. It is such because it is absolutely foundational in what James is teaching throughout this book. He didn’t want these believers to simply claim the right things, he wanted them to live in the right way. There is, however, a great danger in us believing that because we know what is right that we are right. It is not in merely hearing the Word that we glorify God, but in doing the Word.
7/20/202217 minutes, 20 seconds
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109 - Is God Good, Really?: James 1:16-18

God is good. This statement has echoed through a church sanctuary from the tongue of a preacher. It has resounded in a hospital room. It has often been repeated in both easy and challenging circumstances. It can become nothing more than a vain repetition and trite expression. So much so that when you hear it, this cynical reply, “Really?” may arise within you. You hear about pointless wars, school shootings, and terrorist attacks and wonder “Is God really good?” To put it closer to home, you experience the death of a loved one, loss of a job, and reception of a bad doctor’s report and wonder “Is God actually good?” You know that the proper Sunday School answer is to say “Yes! God is good!” but the truth of God’s goodness seems more like an abstract possibility than a concrete reality. We know that we should believe God is good, but if we’re honest, sometimes we wonder if God is really and truly good. James 1:16-18 provides concrete assurance for us that God is truly and really good in three ways: God is the Source of All Goodness.  God is Unchanging in His Goodness.  God's Goodness is Displayed in our Salvation. 
7/12/202218 minutes, 13 seconds
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108 - The Reason We Sin: James 1:13-15

We have always looked for someone or something to blame when it comes to temptation and sin. We may think of a young child saying “the devil made me do it!” Or, perhaps, we have a cartoony image of an evil angel leading us to sin. We may not actually blame Satan and don’t have two angels on our shoulders, but the truth remains, that we always look for someone or something to blame for our sin. James 1:13-15 answers this question: Who are we to blame when we are tempted? We may shift the blame to the world and Satan. We may even place it foolishly on God. But James 1:13-15 speaks with absolute clarity - the only person that you can blame for your sinful inclinations is yourself.
7/5/202217 minutes, 44 seconds
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107 - It Will Be Worth It All: James 1:12

James 1:12 is the beatitude of this little book. I call it the beatitude of James because it is akin to the beatitudes of Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount. Through Matthew 5:3-12, Jesus issued nine “Blessed are” statements. Jesus pronounced a blessing upon those that wouldn’t appear very blessed. Those statements are much like what James does here. He used the same exact word for blessed that Jesus did which speaks of being supremely blessed or happy. We must ask the question, “Why is this person blessed?” James offers a couple of reasons why the person who endures is blessed He is blessed because he reached the end of the trial He is blessed because there is a reward at the end of the trial He is blessed because the reward is given by the Lord He loves.
6/28/202216 minutes, 16 seconds
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106 - An Identity Beyond Poverty and Wealth: James 1:9-11

Christ’s church is composed of both rich and poor believers and that is precisely why James wrote this section for both kinds of believers within the church. These verses teach us the important truth of taking our eyes off of our physical condition and turning them to our spiritual position in Christ. These three verses bear out that James has pastoral wisdom for both categories of believers. We must take heed to these verses. He sets the tone of this section by saying “let the brother of low degree rejoice in that he is exalted, but the rich, in that he is made low.” There is a very clear command to rejoice in verse 9.  He calls the believers in this congregation to glory, vaunt, and rejoice. This command was given to both poor and rich believers. He told the poor to rejoice and the rich to rejoice. However, the reason why he told them to rejoice is intriguing. He exhorted the poor to rejoice in their exaltation and the rich to rejoice in their humiliation. James told the poor to rejoice in his exaltation because he had been made rich in Christ. He also told the rich to rejoice in his humiliation because his riches had no bearing on his position in Christ. Here’s the key truth James taught then and we must take today - believers must turn their attention away from their physical, and financial position in the world and towards their true identity in Christ.
6/21/202216 minutes, 39 seconds
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105 - The Recipe for True Wisdom: James 1:5-8

There is one source of all wisdom and He freely gives it. He doesn't hold back. He breaks the dam and floods our lives with wisdom so that you may know how to live for His glory and honor. There is, however, a requirement - you must ask in faith. You must turn to Him alone as the only source of wisdom. Your Father longs to give you wisdom, but He will not give if you don’t ask for it and if you ask for it, you must ask for it in faith. This is so beautifully simple. We need wisdom. God desires to give it. The only thing He requires is that we ask in faith. Biblical wisdom is dependent upon what your view of God is. If you see Him as the only source of wisdom and go to Him in prayer asking Him for wisdom, He will freely give it to you as His child. It’s available. We just have to ask in faith.
6/14/202218 minutes, 1 second
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104 - When Life Stinks, Rejoice!: James 1:1-4

What are you to do when life stinks? How are you to respond when trials come? This most practical book of James begins with one of the most practical issues we face - when life stinks. Moreover, it begins by revealing how believers should respond when trials come. We don’t avoid, evade, or escape trials. Instead, we can count them as all joy! To see trials as fully joyous doesn’t make sense unless you understand that God has a specific purpose in them. When you compare the glorious end of the trial to the means of the trial - you can rejoice in them. James 1:2-4 is the manual for how to respond in the trials, but if you will respond like this in the trial, you have to look beyond it. Here’s the hope of it all - the sun will start shining again and God will have accomplished what He desired to accomplish in you through it. Even greater than that, one day the trials will end forever. Every trial that comes to refine you a little bit more into the likeness of Christ will be over. You will be completed. God’s work for you will be finished. I can guarantee you, with the full assurance of Scripture, that you’ll not look back on a single affliction and think “that wasn’t worth it. That didn’t really make me a more complete Christian.” Instead, you will look back knowing that God accomplished everything He desired to accomplish in you through each trial. The key to counting it all joy, when life stinks, is by setting it against the glorious light of eternity. One day trials will cease. One day, we will be finished. But that day is not yet here. Now, we face trials. Now, we are being transformed through adversity. We know, however, that there is a reason for the cornucopia of trials. It is so much better than how bad the trial may seem now. Therefore, when you face your next trial, count it all joy. Trials come to bring about the greatest end that can come about - that’s why we can count it all joy.
6/7/202217 minutes, 8 seconds
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103 - James: An Exploration in Practical Christianity

I’m excited to embark on a verse-by-verse journey through the book of James. You may have noticed that there haven’t been any new episodes since the end of April. I decided to take a few weeks off to hit the reset button a bit. During that time, I’ve been preparing for the next series, which will be a study through this book.  As we go through it, you’ll notice that it is an overly-practical book. James’ quill was soaked in the ink of practical Christian living. These exhortations are not general either. James doesn’t just say “put your faith in practice! Do more!” No, James dealt with specific issues - trials, sinful temptations, and oppression. He addressed the sins of partiality, lust, and an uncontrolled tongue. James wrote to call believers to put their faith into practice. They knew what to believe, but their beliefs had not yet shaped their behavior. This is an incredibly relevant book for us today. I hope you will join me as we travel through this challenging and edifying book! 
5/31/20229 minutes, 49 seconds
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102 - Why is the Ascension so Important?: Acts 1:9-12

This week, I’d like to conclude this study by looking at one final event - The Ascension. In addition to Gethsemane and the burial, I think the ascension has been awfully neglected in our teaching and preaching. We haven’t studied it a lot. We don’t think about it much at all. It is primarily mentioned in passing statements about the Gospel. We emphasize the crucifixion and declare the resurrection, but simply mention the ascension. It is just a passing remark. The ascension of Jesus is worth far more than a mere passing remark. It deserves careful study because understanding it will produce true worship and practice. There are a few central truths that the ascension teaches us:  The work of salvation is complete - Jesus ascended to sit down at the right hand of God.  The Savior will return  The church must work until He does. 
4/26/202216 minutes, 51 seconds
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101 - The Risen Christ: Jesus is Alive Today

We celebrate the resurrection on Easter, and rightfully so, but Jesus is no more alive on Easter than He is on a Tuesday in April, nor will He be any more alive on a Friday 2,000 years from now. Jesus is just as alive today as He was this past Sunday. If we’re not careful, the resurrection of Jesus can be a historical event but not a present reality. Yes, Jesus did rise bodily. But Jesus is still risen bodily. He is not a historical figure that we read about, but He is a living person that is seated at the right hand of God making intercession for us today. This changes everything!
4/19/202216 minutes, 28 seconds
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100 - Why does the Burial of Jesus Matter?: Mark 15:42-47

In examining the events surrounding the last week of Jesus’ life, we put particular emphasis (and rightfully so) on the death and resurrection of Jesus. Jesus paid for sin on the cross and proved that sin was paid for in the resurrection. There was, however, a crucial event that took place between the cross and the garden - the burial of Jesus. This is one of those events in the life of Jesus, such as the ascension, that we glance at, but don’t gaze upon. You may be thinking, why does the burial matter? Of course he was buried because that’s where dead men go, don’t they? There’s more to it than that. If you need proof that the burial is important, I point you to Paul’s description of the Gospel in 1 Corinthians 15:3-4: 1 Corinthians 15:3-4 - For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures; [4] And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures: The burial is included alongside the death and resurrection of Jesus. If it is that important, we must ask why. Why does the burial of Jesus matter? There are a few reasons:  It was the fulfillment of Scripture (Isa. 53:9). It proved that He actually died.  It is symbolic of our union with Him. 
4/12/202219 minutes, 2 seconds
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99 - The Authority of God in Biblical Interpretation

In every piece of literature you read, you determine the meaning based on what the author said. Whether it is fiction like Romeo and Juliet by Shakespeare, The Fellowship of the Ring by Tolkien, or The Magician’s Nephew by CS Lewis. Perhaps, you pick up a science, math, or English textbook. Maybe you take dieting, exercising, or cooking books off of the shelf. In all of these books, you go to them with one fundamental question, “What does the author say and what do they mean?” We read books, not looking for hidden meaning or disputing what is said, but to see what the author said. If you picked up a book on exercise and said, “No, this is really about Aristotle or Plato’s views on human ethics.” you would be looked at like a mad man because that is not what the author meant. When you read a human book, you must submit to the authority of the author and not put your meaning where he put meaning. The author of his or her book is the authority of that book, therefore, you interpret their book by what they say. Why do we interpret Scripture differently? If we give authority in that way to human authors, why would we not submit to an even greater authority - God. He is the authority of Scripture. Not you. Not me. That means, when we come to a passage of Scripture we must as “what does God say?” and “what does God mean by what He said?”
4/8/20228 minutes, 36 seconds
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98 - Jesus Paid it All: On the Crucifixion

From Bethlehem to Egypt to Nazareth to the Jordan to the Sea of Galilee to Capernaum to the Garden of Gethsemane, we have the life of Jesus in the Gospel accounts. Jesus was baptized, tempted, followed, believed, and rejected. He cleansed, healed, restored, and resurrected. He taught the multitudes and the disciples. No one has lived a greater life than Jesus, but each of those places and events succeeded one another to culminate in the pivotal point of redemptive and human history - the crucifixion. Jesus did not come to simply give men a better way to live. Neither did He come to take care of physical infirmities without addressing the greatest sickness. Jesus did not come on a mission of morality or medicine, but redemption. He came, as 2 Corinthians 5 tells us to reconcile sinners to Himself. Jesus Christ came into the world to save sinners and the only way was through the cross. In the words of John MacArthur: “The entire work of redemption had been brought to completion. The single Greek word here (translated “it is finished”) has been found written on papyri receipts for taxes, meaning “pain in full”. The cross is the declaration that Jesus paid it all. 
4/5/202217 minutes, 57 seconds
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97 - In Christ: What does it mean and why does it matter?

To be in Christ is the greatest possible position a person can be in. If you are not in Christ, nothing else matters. If you are in Christ, nothing else matters. The complete identity of the believer can be wrapped up in the phrase - In Christ. For in Christ, we are righteous, sanctified, and glorified. In Christ, we are holy, just, and pure. In Christ, we are united with one another. In Christ, we have hope that is eternal. This phrase was one of Paul's favorites and it should be one of ours as well. We look at this in this week's episode!
4/1/20228 minutes, 11 seconds
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96 - The Prelude to the Cross

Easter Sunday is rapidly approaching. In a couple of weeks, many will gather on that day to remember what Jesus has done. For some, it will be just another day. For others, it will be the first time in a long time they’ve been in church. For you and me, however, I hope we will march towards that day with a greater understanding of what Jesus has done and is doing for us. So then, over the next few weeks, we are going to dive into those events leading up to and following the finished work of Jesus on the cross. This week, we’re going to summarize those events from Palm Sunday forward that led to Jesus being nailed to the cross. Then, we’ll look at the crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension of Jesus in the following weeks. In this episode, I’d like to give you a brief overview of the events that preceded the cross. We will not examine these to simply stuff our heads with historical facts. The account of Jesus' death, burial, and resurrection is not fantasy but fact. These events are historical, but they are not just history. We must not simply answer the question ``what happened?” but “why did it happen?” The Christian faith is founded upon what Jesus has done, but if there is no meaning to what He did, we have missed it.
3/29/202213 minutes, 56 seconds
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95 - What is Antinomianism?

What is Antinomianism? Unlike Legalism, which we looked at in episode 93,  this may be a newer term to you, so let’s begin by breaking down the word. Anti- means to be against or without and nomian comes from the word “nomos” which means law. Unlike the Legalist, the Antinomian does everything he can to eradicate the law of God as coming to bear upon a person's life. It has a weak view of grace that believes in grace that saves but not grace that sanctifies.  At the heart of both of these systems of thought is the misconception of God’s grace. Legalism says that grace is not enough for salvation or sanctification. Meanwhile, Antinomianism has a limited view of God’s grace in saying that obedience to God’s Word is antithetical to grace. Both systems miss what God’s grace truly is. We take a glance at this system in this episode. 
3/25/20229 minutes, 49 seconds
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94 - God is For Us: Romans 8:31-39

If God is for us, who can be against us? You've heard, read, and thought about that before, but really? Romans 8 absolutely affirms that God is on the side of those who are in Christ. It is proven and applied in these verses. In this week's episode, we pause our journey through Genesis to dive into Romans 8:31-39 to see that God is undeniably on the side of those in Christ.  You cannot be condemned because the only one who has the right to condemn you has justified you (8:33-34). You cannot be separated because His love extends to every circumstance in life and death (8:35-39).  The reality that God is for us should produce in us a steadfast assurance and confidence knowing that we can face whoever and whatever because God is on our side and He is greater than all of those. God is for us, may we live in confidence!
3/22/202218 minutes, 7 seconds
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86 - Life Before the Fall (Part One): Genesis 2:4-17

Those who have only lived after the fall of Genesis three know very well what life is like after the fall. We understand the division of human beings, the grueling nature of work, and the pain a mother endures in delivering a child. We know very well what it is like to experience pain, sorrow, and anxiety. However, Genesis 2 reveals to us what life was like before any of this happened. Before there was grueling labor, God gave Adam work to do. Before there was strife, Adam enjoyed perfect communion with Eve. Before there was sin, Adam knew what God intended for life to be. Genesis 2 points us to what was God’s intention to be normal in the world. What is normal to us, was not God’s normal for the world. Normal to us is sin and death, but to God is righteousness and life! However, because of the fall in Genesis 3, sin and death remains normal thus departing from God’s original design in Genesis 2. Even greater than pointing us back to life before the fall, Genesis two reminds us that one day, this will be restored to the millionth degree! Because of the redemptive work of Jesus Christ, He will recreate this world to an even greater state than it was at the beginning. What was normal in Genesis 2 is not normal for us now and what is normal for us now will not be normal for us then. As Revelation 21:6 declares, He will make all things new! Through Jesus Christ, this messed up state will be renewed to His original design and then some. (Re-Published because of an error in post)
3/21/202215 minutes, 46 seconds
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93 - What is Legalism?

Legalism is one of the most hot-button topics of recent times. I think there are two ditches people fall into regarding what Legalism is and what it isn’t. Some people say, “Everything is legalism!” and others say, “Nothing is legalism!” In light of these two ditches, what then is Legalism? My succinct definition for Legalism is this:  Legalism is any standard of righteousness that differs from God’s standard of righteousness, both in salvation and sanctification. We all understand Legalism in the first matter of salvation. Legalism is when anyone says, “you must do this to be saved.” However, we also see that Legalism can be manifested in sanctification. We examine both of these realities to answer this question, in this week's episode. 
3/11/20225 minutes, 57 seconds
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92 - Tethered: How Genesis 1-3 Connects to the Rest of the Bible

We’ve been looking in the early chapters of Genesis over the last few weeks. Before we travel on, I wanted to take flight from the ground level and look at these recent chapters from a 20,000-foot view. Instead of looking at a specific passage in Genesis this week, I want to show you how Genesis 1-3 relates to the whole of Scripture. Here’s an important truth for you and me, as we study our Bibles. Every single word, verse, sentence, paragraph, chapter, and book are written within a greater Biblical context. It’s important not to look at any verse, paragraph, or book without considering the overarching narrative of God’s Word. As it has been well pointed out before, you cannot miss the forest by staring at the trees. This is especially true in Genesis 1-3 because events happen in these chapters that have earth-shattering ramifications upon the rest of Biblical and human history. There are truths revealed in these chapters that set a precedent about who God is and how God works. There are implications that remain true through history because of what happened in Eden. How does Genesis 1-3 connect to the rest of Scripture? In General Revelation: Creation declares the glory of God.  In Special Revelation: God is a speaking God. In Man: Man is created in the image of God.  In Sin: Adam's fall doomed the rest of humanity. In Salvation: The promise of a Savior is given.   In Restoration: Life before the fall reminds us that God will make all things new. 
3/8/202218 minutes, 45 seconds
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91 - The Struggle Between Law and Grace

Throughout all of Christian history, there has been a struggle regarding how to reconcile the law and grace. It was acknowledged in the early church at the Jerusalem council in Acts 16, Paul in Galatians, and the apostle in Hebrews. It has also been dealt with throughout church history and is still very prevalent in our time as well. It is a struggle between law and grace regarding how it applies to the Christian's life.  Two false systems arise from misconceptions of grace: Legalism and Antinomianism. We will examine these in the next two installments of Taught by Grace's theology episodes, but this week, we take a general look at this apparent struggle between law and grace to see what Scripture teaches. 
3/7/20225 minutes, 53 seconds
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90 - The Fruit Wasn't Worth It: Genesis 3:8-24

In Genesis 3:1-7, Adam and Eve bought the lie of the serpent that God wasn't really good and he didn't really know what was best for them. They ate of the tree expecting it to be far better than their current state, but they found it to be far worse.  For the first time in Genesis 3:8-24, God enters the scene as more than a mere byword. He is not accused by the serpent or doubted by Eve now, but He takes over. There are three ways in which God works throughout this chapter. 1) He enters the garden interrogating, 2) he responds to their sin by declaring, and 3) he ultimately responds to it by doing. We see God interrogating in 8-13, declaring in 14-20, and doing in 21-24. Eating of the tree wasn’t worth it. Adam and Eve bought the lie, but it wasn’t worth it. They knew good and evil, but they didn’t become gods. Their eyes were opened, but they now knew the shame of being naked. We have been examining the glory in creation, but this is not glorious. This is absolutely tragic. By the way, this is not some distant even in the past that doesn’t really matter today. This is the very reason we are in the mess we are in today. This is why people die because, as Romans 5 teaches, in Adam all men die. It is because of this original sin and you and I coming from Adam and Eve that we die. We will die physically and we are dead spiritually. There is death, decay, famine, war, shame, suffering, and so much more, all because of sin. If you ever ask, “Why is there so much bad in the world?” you must simply remember Genesis 3. It is because of sin. The ramifications of this event were not just personal, they were universal. They didn’t just affect Adam and Eve, but every person born thereafter. But this is not the end of the story. God could have wiped the slate clean, but He didn’t. He is not a God who restarts, He is a God who redeems. And He promised to redeem and He has redeemed. It is because of this event that sin entered into the world and it is also for that very reason, that a Savior was needed and God came as Jesus Christ to do that.
3/7/202216 minutes
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89 - A Deadly Feast: Genesis 3:1-7

In nearly every novel, film, and story, there is a climactic point that transforms the narrative. The basketball team is undefeated, the hero only knows triumph, and the family enjoys happiness. However, something happens. The team is beaten, the hero is defeated, and the family experiences tragedy. Then, instead of ascending the mountain of victory, life, and peace, they begin descending into the depths of frustration, anger, and sorrow. The climactic loss or tragedy transforms the entire narrative. But all of these only pale in comparison to the tragedy that occurred in Genesis three. There has never been a more drastic shift from peace to hostility, joy to sadness, and life to death. Genesis 3 is this event in God’s Word. The serpent enters the garden with his ploy to destroy Adam and Eve. He causes the woman to question the word of God and character of God while promising to give her what God refuses to give her. 
2/22/202221 minutes, 54 seconds
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88 - Christ Alone for the Assurance of Salvation

In this week’s everyday theology episode, we’re going to take a brief look into the subject of assurance of salvation. This is one of those subjects concerning salvation that many believers struggle with, but are afraid to admit that they struggle with it. It seems like there should be a point in your Christian life when you just know that you know that you know for good. However, we, especially those of us who struggle with doubt, understand that there will be times when doubt arises in our hearts. The reason so many struggles with knowing that they are saved is because the grounds for their assurance is rooted in their faith instead of the object of their faith You don’t question whether or not Jesus saves, but you question whether or not you really believed in Jesus. You question whether or not you did the right thing, said the right words, or had strong enough faith. This is why we doubt! We are looking for assurance in us, rather than looking for assurance in Christ.
2/18/20225 minutes, 53 seconds
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87 - Life Before the Fall (Part Two): Genesis 2:18-25

In last week’s episode, we examined verses 4-17 of Genesis 2 to see what life was like before sin. One of the key takeaways from Genesis 2 is this. Some things that were before the fall, remain after the fall. However, now they have been distorted from God’s original design for them. Last week, we saw how that work before the fall was satisfying. Now, this week, we’re going to see how God originally designed for relationships to be as a whole and the marriage covenant specifically. Almost everything we see about relationships following Genesis 2 is a distortion of God’s original design. Do you think that murder, deception, adultery, and the like were in God’s original design? Of course not! God’s original design for human beings was not that they would be at odds with one another, but in communion with one another.
2/15/202215 minutes, 55 seconds
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86 - The Beauty of the Gathered Church

There is really one primary passage in the New Testament on the importance of gathering together. Hebrews 10:25 - Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. I find it interesting that this is really the only command in the New Testament, as far as I have seen, that commands believers to come together. However, there are a myriad of exhortations about how believers are to interact when they are together. Don’t miss this. Believers gathering together did not have to be commanded repeatedly because it was assumed that that is what believers do. God’s people are a gathering people. They have to come together. They long to come together. It is not the normal state of the Christian to live in isolation from other believers, but in community with other believers. However, we live in a time that isolation Christianity has become the norm. Many believers are content to watch their favorite preacher from home or join in on the livestream of the church, instead of having meaningful interactions with their brothers and sisters in Christ. Link to episode on Christian Fellowship:
2/4/20225 minutes, 27 seconds
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Made in the Image of God: Genesis 1:26-27

Have you ever wondered, “Do I really matter?” My friend, you matter because you matter to God because you are made in His image. You may think that your value simply as a person is found in your ethnicity, grades, financial status, or religious affiliation, but Genesis 1 teaches us that every person’s value as a human is that you are made in the image of God. In Genesis 1:26-27, we are brought to another fundamental truth about God and man. Perhaps, this is the most fundamental truth about what makes men and women valuable. That is, men and women are made in the image of God. This reality must be established because your view of what people are will flow from your view of this. What makes human beings different from other creatures? What distinguishes people as being different from animals? Why are people different than dogs, trees, and apples? Though some may say that there really is no difference between people and other creatures, Genesis 1:26-27 makes abundantly clear why there is a difference. There is a difference between you and your dog because you are made in the image of God. Our value as humans does not come from within us or around us, but above us. We have value because we have been given value by God being made in His image.
2/2/202218 minutes, 22 seconds
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The Comfort of God's Providence

In this week's theology episode, we are going to look into the truth of God's providence.  God’s providence is most vividly illustrated in the life of Joseph. If you view the story of Joseph with a human lens, you will see someone who endured many difficulties wrongfully. Let’s briefly recount his life as revealed in Genesis 37-50. Joseph’s life seemed to be a perpetual process of being done wrong. Whether it was his brothers, Potipher’s wife, the butler, or anyone else, Joseph knew what it meant to be abused and misused. However, God was at work in all of his circumstances. Jeremiah Burroughs gives us a fitting application in his seminal work, The Rare Jewel of Christian Contentment. In this excerpt, he writes on how knowing both God’s providence and wisdom will bring great comfort to the Christian.  “A contented heart looks to God’s disposal, and submits to God’s disposal, that is, he sees the wisdom of God in everything. In his submission he sees his sovereignty, but what makes him take pleasure is God’s wisdom. The Lord knows how to order things better than I. The Lord sees further than I do; I only see things at present but the Lord sees a great while from now. And how do I know but that had it not been for this affliction, I should have been undone. I know that the love of God may as well stand with an afflicted condition as with a prosperous condition.” Take heart in your afflictions. You can be encouraged in the greatest difficulties of your life because you know, not just that God is in control, but that God is good and He knows best. The providence of God should be like a river of peace flowing into the Christian’s life. For you and I may know that God is at work in every circumstance of life and that He knows best in all the circumstances of life.
1/28/20225 minutes, 39 seconds
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The Creative Power of God: Genesis 1:3-2:3

In the beginning, there was God and in the beginning, God created everything. He did not take a hammer and nails and spend millennia building the world. He simply spoke and the world came into existence. He spoke, and the light pierced the darkness. He spoke, and the landmasses appeared from nothing. He spoke, and the stars danced in outer space. He spoke, and lions walked, birds flew, and fish swam. He spoke, and everything came into being. This week, we are going to behold the transcendent power of God in creating this world and everything in it. Though there is much to be expounded upon in these verses, I hope to just point out a few major themes to you that jump off of the pages of Scripture. God’s Power - He created everything by the Word of His mouth. God’s Goodness - Everything that God created was recognized, by Him, as good because He is good. God's Completeness - God rested on the seventh day to declare that His work was finished. 
1/25/202213 minutes, 50 seconds
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A Practical Look at Christ's Resurrection

Jesus Christ has completely conquered death. We know that his death and resurrection guarantee the forgiveness of sins. However, what I want to remind you of in this episode is that it also guarantees our future resurrection from the grave. Jesus didn’t just redeem you spiritually, but His finished work will redeem and transform you physically as well! We know that He did indeed rise from the grave and because He did, we do not remain in our sins. His resurrection guarantees that our salvation is true. However, His resurrection doesn’t just validate our faith in Him for salvation, but it also guarantees a future resurrection of all those who trust in Him.
1/21/20225 minutes, 17 seconds
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It All Begins With God: Genesis 1:1-2

In this week's episode, I begin a study through the foundational chapters of Genesis. There are many truths to be dove into about God, sin, salvation, and man in these chapters.  The first of these that we will see in Genesis 1:1-2 is this, it all begins with God. If you can believe this, you will have no issue believing in a God who parted the Red Sea, crumbled the walls of Jericho, wrought many mighty wonders and supremely, came as a man to redeem us from our sins by living, dying, and rising from the dead! If you believe all of that, you must have a big view of God. In other words, you must believe that God is God. That is it. That is what Genesis 1:1-2. It teaches the “Godness of God” to us, a term used by David Jackman. It fundamentally establishes that He is God alone. We must begin with God because everything begins with God, is sustained by God, and will be concluded by God. I want us to leave this episode having seen three fundamental truths about God and creation. Creation has a beginning - This world has not always been. God does not have a beginning - He was before the world was. God is the reason creation has a beginning - The world has a beginning because the eternally existent God created it all.
1/18/202217 minutes
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The Sufficiency of Scripture

Most Christians regard God's Word as inerrant and infallible. However, I believe we must also regard His Word as sufficient. It is not to be only a guide in our lives, it is to be the preeminent guide in our lives. We must not equate voices, books, podcasts, or other resources with Scripture. Books may lead us astray. Ideologies may point us away. Internal feelings may direct us wrongly. However, the Word of God never fails. You may be unsure about the truthfulness of other voices, but you can always be certain that His voice thunders through the pages of Scripture. God’s Word is absolutely sufficient. It is truly our sufficient authority for faith and practice
1/14/20225 minutes, 4 seconds
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The Christian and the Great Commission: A Conversation with Matthew Hobbs

In this week’s episode, Matthew and I dive into how you can more effectively and actively share the Gospel. The Gospel is the greatest treasure, but it is not a treasure to be hidden away. Rather, we are to share it with anyone that we can! Matthew offers some helpful counsel about how you and I can do this better.  He speaks about some of the things that hinder us from sharing the Gospel.  He also describes how we can overcome that by having a plan when we speak to someone.  He gives us his typical pattern of sharing the Gospel with someone.  We also emphasize the importance of depending upon God in our witnessing.  I pray this conversation will challenge and encourage you to go out and proclaim the good news of Jesus' death, burial, and resurrection!
1/11/202225 minutes
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Christian Fellowship: The Commonality Believers Share in Christ

What is Christian Fellowship? The word fellowship comes from the Greek word “koinonia” which simply speaks of what is shared in common. This word is used 18 times throughout the New Testament in places such as Acts 2:42; 1 Cor. 1:9; Philippians 1:5; and 1 Jn. 1:3 among other places. At its most basic meaning, the truth of Christian fellowship is about the relationship believers share and how they live in light of that relationship. However, it seems that the fellowship has been redefined from relationship to now being about an activity. Jerry Bridges notes this issue well: “In our Christian circles, the word fellowship has come to mean little more than Christian social activity. It may mean the exchange of pleasantries over coffee and cookies at church, or the social functions of a high school or campus ministry groups. This is not the meaning of fellowship in the New Testament.” Those events can and should promote the experience of Christian fellowship, however, these events are not fellowship in and of themselves. Fellowship is primarily rooted in the relationship believers have because of their common bond with Jesus. Now, when that is understood, all of those other events produce true fellowship. Christian fellowship is foundationally a relationship and experiential fellowship is produced from that relationship when believers relate to one another based upon the truths of Scripture. We experience fellowship when we serve, love, forgive, forbear, and live in unity with one another. 
1/7/20225 minutes, 21 seconds
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The Christian and the Gospel: A Conversation with Matthew Hobbs

What is the Gospel?  What impact does the Gospel have on our lives?  What are we to do with the Gospel?  I was able to sit down with Matthew Hobbs and look into these questions. Over the next two weeks, we dive into the Gospel. We look at the Christian’s relationship to the Gospel and next week, how the Christian must share the Gospel. This week, we discussed the importance of the Christian’s relationship with the Gospel. Matthew answers the question “What is the Gospel?”. Then, before looking at cherishing the Gospel, Matthew emphasizes the absolute necessity of being born again. The episode concludes by dealing with the Christian’s relationship to the Gospel. As Matthew points out, the Gospel should have a manifest impact in our relationships with others, sin, and our hope for eternity.
1/4/202220 minutes, 11 seconds
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An Unwavering Certainty in Christ's Second Coming

A little less than a week ago, we officially celebrated the first coming of Jesus Christ. His first advent, or arrival, was for the express purpose of redeeming fallen sinners. It is a breathtaking endeavor to look down the corridors of time into the truths of His first coming. He came as the lamb slain before the foundation of the world. He came as the babe born in Bethlehem. He came to redeem fallen sinners by taking their place on the cross. It is so wonderful to examine these truths, however, in looking back, we must not forget to look forward. Just as certainly as Jesus came, He is coming again. He is not coming the second time to suffer, but to conquer. There is no uncertainty. There should be no doubt. Just as certain as we are that He has come, we must be that He is coming again. 
12/31/20214 minutes, 42 seconds
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Rich in Christ: 2 Corinthians 8:9

The glorious message of the Christmas story is that the rich became poor so that the poor might be rich. It is the story of the invasion of God’s grace into a world marred by sin. It is the story of the sinless coming to redeem sinners. It is the story of God becoming a man to live, die, and rise from the grace to redeem fallen sinners. To make the poor rich. There is no one as rich as Him, but we’re not made rich through His riches. No one has access to more land, more money, more food, more gifts, or more anything than Him, but we are not made rich through any of those things. We are not made rich by His riches, we are made rich through His poverty. This passage points out two truths regarding Jesus Christ’s state. He was rich and He became poor. There was never a beginning to His richness, but there was a beginning to His poverty. He existed in infinite wealth and glory, but He condescended to exceeding poverty and lowliness. There is no comparison to His richness and there is no comparison to His poverty.
12/28/202117 minutes, 3 seconds
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Emmanuel, God with Us

One of the most precious truths of the Christmas season is that God is now with us. As it is Christmas Eve, I thought it’d be fitting to look into the truth of God being with us as we come near to Christmas. When Gabriel visited Joseph about the birth of Jesus, he made known that this was the fulfillment of Isaiah 7:14 and that this baby was God with us. The name Emmanuel is one of the most precious names of Jesus as it declares “God with us” Jesus did not come to be God above us, around us, or against, but God with us. He came to be with us so that we might be with Him. Jesus came to lift us out of our sinful poverty into His glorious riches by being with us.
12/24/20214 minutes, 30 seconds
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Come, Let us Adore Him! - Luke 1:46-56

In Luke 1:46-56, we have a beautiful reminder of what the Christmas message should produce in our lives, worship. Worship and praise are woven throughout the narrative of the Christmas story. This is no less true than with Mary herself. The one to whom Gabriel came with the stunning announcement that she would be the mother of the Word made flesh worshipped. Worship permeates the story of Christmas. This worship is not limited to a specific age, gender, or monetary status. John the Baptist worshipped from the womb, while Simeon and Anna both worshipped nearing the end of their lives. Mary and Elizabeth worshipped and the Shepherds, Simeon, and the wise men worshipped. The lowly shepherds worshipped, the rich wise men worshipped, and the majestic angels worshipped. Christmas worship is for both the rich and the poor, young and the old, and the glorious and lowly. What is the requirement then to worship? You must know, love, and believe this message. It doesn’t matter who you are, if that is the case. Every one of us ought to worship the Lord Jesus over the Christmas story because His redemptive work is for all people of every nation, tribe, and tongue. However, we rejoice with more knowledge today, for He did not remain the babe in the manger. He’s no longer laying in the feeding troth, neither is He working in Joseph’s carpentry shop, neither is He on the cross or in the tomb. We do not worship Him now because He has come to bring salvation, we worship Him now because He has brought salvation! Oh my friend, may we join in with Mary, John, Elizabeth, the shepherds, Simeon, Anna, and the wise men to worship Him!
12/21/202113 minutes, 37 seconds
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The Sinless Savior: Jesus didn't miss the mark

No human being can fulfill the law, however, for redemption to happen, one had to be under the same rule to redeem those bound under that rule. Enter Jesus Christ. For Jews, the written law of God revealed their sinfulness and for the Gentiles, the law of God in their hearts revealed their depravity. All men are under the law and the law declares “Guilty!” It sets a standard for us that we are incapable of meeting because of our proclivity towards sin. We need salvation and redemption, but for this to happen, one had to be born under that same law. This is what Galatians 4:4-5 reminds us of. One had to be born under the law to fulfill the law to redeem those under the law. He could not be above the law or apart from the law, but He had to have the same standard over Him that you and I have. Here’s the key difference. He lived under that standard and met it. Instead of missing the mark, He nailed the bullseye with perfect accuracy. He was placed under the law in the incarnation and perfectly fulfilled the law. Without any sin. He never lusted, He never desired sin, He never sinned. He lived the impeccably sinless life that you and I could never live to this end. To redeem them that are under the law.
12/17/20214 minutes, 50 seconds
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The Most Glorious Message to a Unimpressive Place: Luke 1:26-38

The message of the Savior of the world did not come to a King, Priest, or Prophet, but to a virgin woman in the lowly town of Nazareth. He always comes to those whom society views as insignificant to declare His glorious power. This passage is a beautiful reminder of the way God works. The Messiah’s lineage was royal, but it was a seemingly forgotten line. He did not come to the rich, but the poor. He did not come to the strong, but the weak. Instead of sending the Messiah through the line of the most powerful monarch of the day, He chose a virgin woman in the lowly town of Nazareth. Through an impossible situation, the Savior would come into the world to redeem men from their sin. Through the weak, the powerful redeemer would come to save sinners. Through the low, the Son of the Highest came. He did not do this because He had to, but He chose to. He always chooses to use the weak, insignificant, and poor instead of the strong, significant, and rich because through those vessels, His glory is best displayed. How could this be any more true than in the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ? Grace, hope, and love wrapped up in a person came through the weak and lowly to declare His power and glory.
12/14/202114 minutes, 40 seconds
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Theology and Worship

Every Chrsitian has a certain perspective of God, so then, every Christian must develop a Biblical, well-rounded, and robust view of God. This is why we must endeavor into this study. However, we must acknowledge a potential pitfall of studying the person and work of God. Oftentimes, theological endeavors lead to an intellectual elitism. It is possible to look into the depths and heights of the incomparable God and think thoughts along these lines: “Look at me, I know more about God than all of these other people!” “These other Christians are so ignorant, they don’t know what the hypostatic union is.” “I have so much more knowledge than my fellow-believers.” It can produce theological pride when there are truths about God that you recognize that maybe others haven’t yet. If your study of theology inflates your head with pride instead of bringing you to your knees in humility, it is a worthless pursuit. That is what our study of theology must not produce. It cannot and must not produce pride and a sense of “being better than others” because you understand more. No, our study of theology should produce humility, worship, and adoration because it ultimately directs our attention to God and God alone.
12/10/20216 minutes, 42 seconds
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Christmas and the Old Testament: Jesus as the Perfect Fulfillment of Prophecy

Last week, we examined the first proclamation of the Christmas message. That is, it comes to those who have made a mess of everything. The message of a Savior is marvelous because we need a Savior. Genesis 3:15 was the first proclamation of this message, but it was not the last. The entire Old Testament prepares for the first coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. There is a Christ-centered lens through which the Old Testament ought to be interpreted. Jesus did not come into the world until His birth, however, His birth was not the beginning of the story of redemption. The Old Testament is rich with narratives, poetry, and prophecies, but it ultimately points to Jesus Christ. It is important to not lose sight of the Old Testament while considering Christmas. Ultimately, all that happened in the Old Testament is a reminder that God is unrelenting in redeeming fallen sinners which are fulfilled in Jesus Christ.
12/7/202113 minutes, 27 seconds
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Why should every Christian study theology?

What is theology? Fundamentally, theology is the study of God. So then, every Christian should be a theologian, and even deeper, they should be robust theologians. You may never pick up a systematic theology book or take a class in seminary and still have a robust, well-rounded view of God. That really is what systematic theology is and does. It takes what the Bible says about God in certain areas and brings it together so that you can have a well-rounded view of who God is, what He has done, and what He will do. Every Christian can be a theologian because every Christian can study God’s Word for himself/herself. You don’t have to pick up a theology book. You don’t have to know every jot and title regarding soteriology. You can be a Christian who just studies God’s Word for yourself and learns about who God is. To be a theologian is really to develop a well-rounded, robust view of who God is because of what He has revealed about Himself in His Word.
12/3/20215 minutes, 52 seconds
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The First Christmas Message: Genesis 3:15

When was the first Christmas message proclaimed? Not in Nazareth, or even Bethlehem, but in the Garden of Eden. God delivered the promise of a coming redeemer and savior to those who had just made a mess of everything. The first Christmas message brought hope into despair, joy into sorrow, and life into death. This message remains true today. The message of Christ is not for those who have it all together, but for those who certainly do not. 
11/30/202114 minutes, 23 seconds
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Trailer - Everyday Theology

Who should study theology? The pastor? The seminarian? The Bible college student? I believe that every Christian ought to be a student of theology because every Christian has a certain view of God that impacts his life. If we have a certain view of God regardless of our studiousness, it is important then that we develop a view of God that is manifestly and robustly Biblical.  That is why the podcast is expanding to include a new segment called Everyday Theology because I believe every Christian should develop a robust, well-rounded view of God that transforms our knowledge of God, worship to God, and lifestyle for God. I believe we have developed a narrow view of theology. We see it as the academic Christians debating over whether or not babies should be baptized, if the return of Christ pre or post-millennial, or His atonement was for an elected few or everyone. Yes, theology engages the mind, but the fundamental purpose of theology and doctrine is to transform our lifestyles.
11/26/20214 minutes, 40 seconds
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A Biblical View of Dealing with People: Romans 12:14-16

The Christian is to interact with all men in a way that is a contradiction to the system of this world. They bless those who curse them. They rejoice with those who rejoice instead of growing jealous. They weep with those who weep instead of responding harshly. They view others with humility instead of pride. Christian relationships are not marked by self-centeredness, but others-centeredness. Truly, this is the Christian way to interact with all men. 
11/16/202113 minutes, 39 seconds
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Christian Generosity: Romans 12:13

Christians do not give by coercion, force, or guilt, rather, they give because they recognize the abundance of the grace that has been displayed to them in Jesus Christ.  There must be a heart of generosity within every believer because we understand what Christ has done for us. 
11/9/202113 minutes, 45 seconds
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Christian Perseverance: Romans 12:12

The Christian is to be steadfast through difficult circumstances. There is no reason for the believer to be tossed to and fro when difficulties arise. The hope we have in Christ helps us persevere in tribulation while remaining constant in prayer.
11/2/202111 minutes, 54 seconds
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Christian Service: Romans 12:10b-11

The display of true Christianity is revealed in a few ways throughout Romans 12.  Christians are to love genuinely (9a)  Christians are to pursue holiness relentlessly (9b)  Christians are to enjoy familial affection for one another (10a)  In this episode, we see that is also displayed in service. True Christian service is marked by passion, not apathy. It is marked by diligence, not laziness. Why must this be true? These characterize the believer's service because this service is unto the Lord!
10/26/202111 minutes, 39 seconds
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Christian Affection: Romans 12:10a

The love that Christians display to one another should be the result of the love that believers have for one another because of their faith in Jesus Christ. Each believer is brought into a familial relationship with other believers, therefore, we must love one another in that manner. 
10/12/202113 minutes, 26 seconds
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How's your Praise?: Psalm 8

This week, we're going to take a brief break from our study in Romans 12 to look at Psalm 8.  This Psalm communicates two key truths to us: God is great and God is good. May our hearts be turned to praise as we consider how our God is transcendent above the universe while still involved in our lives. 
10/5/202116 minutes, 27 seconds
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A Vigorous Response to Evil and Good: Romans 12:9b

The Christian's response to both evil and goodness is not one of indifference or apathy, but a passion. We are to respond to sinfulness with a godly hatred and we are to embrace righteousness. There is no middle ground, but the believer is to be on the Lord's side in the matter of righteousness and sinfulness. 
9/28/202111 minutes, 29 seconds
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Genuine Love: Romans 12:9a

How are believers to love one another? Paul gives us an answer for how we are to love one another by showing us how not to love each other. Love is to be without hypocrisy. It is not to be a mere show, but it is to be genuine.  This love was perfectly displayed for us in Jesus Christ. Meditate on His love to know what true, genuine love is. 
9/21/202111 minutes, 30 seconds
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Spiritual Gifts (Part Two): Romans 12:6-8

Spiritual gifts. They are often misunderstood, underemphasized, or just plain neglected. There are many disagreements regarding what spiritual gifts are and are not in activity today. That will not be the focus of this episode. Rather, we are going to explore these verses to come away with the main truth being emphasized. Your spiritual gift is not for you, but to help others. If you preach or teach, then study, pray, and proclaim God’s Word with all of your heart. If you minister, then humbly serve others. If you give, do it without a desire for self-glory. If you rule or administer, do it to the best of your ability. No matter how God has gifted you, your gift is necessary for the sake of the body of believers that you belong to. There are no superior spiritual gifts. Each spiritual gift is essential for the body to function. Take your role and use it for God’s glory and honor in serving fellow believers. Remember, His glory is the goal of the Christian life. Use your gift to bring Him glory!
9/14/202117 minutes, 2 seconds
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Spiritual Gifts (Part 1): Romans 12:6-8

There are no insignificant spiritual gifts because there are no insignificant Christians. Every believer is essential to the body, therefore, every believer’s spiritual gift matters. Join me as we examine the definition, reality, and purpose of spiritual gifts in part one of two episodes on this subject.
9/2/202112 minutes, 35 seconds
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Interdependent Christianity: Romans 12:3-5

Christ has formed His body so that the members are reliant upon one another. Every believer has been gifted with a spiritual gift, but no believers have been gifted with all spiritual gifts. Every believer must rely upon other believers. In other words, the Christian life is one of interdependence. You need other believers.
8/26/202116 minutes, 47 seconds
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All in!: Romans 12:1-2

What does true Christian living look like? Foundationally, true Christian living involves complete surrender, radical transformation, and a satisfied will. Simply, it is a life of being all in.  This week, we begin our study through Romans 12 by examining the truths detailed in verses one and two. This passage is one of the greatest transitions from doctrine to practice in God's Word. The truths of the Gospel of Christ compel us to live a life that is all in for God's glory! 
8/19/202116 minutes, 28 seconds
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God's Glory in the Christian Life: Romans 12

The chief purpose of the Christian life is to glorify God. Romans 12 is the bridge between the doctrinal truths of the Gospel and the practical implications of the Gospel.  Romans 11:36 describes how God does everything for His glory. The saving work that Paul described in Romans 1-11 is for the glory of God. Now, the Christian's response to everything that He has done is to bring Him glory in the way that we live. He has lavished His grace upon us in Christ, therefore, we must serve Him in all that we do. 
8/12/202115 minutes, 5 seconds
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Season Two Trailer

The Taught by Grace Podcast is back for a second season! This season we will continue exploring God's Word as we seek to live by His grace and for His glory. 
8/5/20211 minute, 50 seconds
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The Best is Yet to Come: Glorification

The theme of the Christian's life is the gospel of Jesus Christ. It details the beginning, middle, and ending. In episodes 48 and 49, we looked at the doctrinal truths of justification and sanctification. We are justified in Christ before God at justification. We are being conformed to the image of Christ in sanctification. We were justified in the past and we are being sanctified in the present, but there is a third aspect to the Christian's life, glorification.  In glorification, we are promised that God will finish the work He began. We will be like Jesus. We will receive glorified bodies. The best is truly yet to come!
6/24/202113 minutes, 3 seconds
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A Work in Progress: Sanctification

The Christian life is the progressive work of God to conform you to the likeness of Jesus Christ. You are under construction, but God will finish the work. During this work, however, we have a responsibility to take our role and engage with God in the sanctification process. 
6/17/202112 minutes, 42 seconds
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A Declaration of Righteousness: Justification

The Christian's life occurs in three stages: justification, sanctification, and glorification. This week, we examine justification. It is the act of God whereby He declares a sinner to be righteous based upon the perfect righteousness of Jesus Christ. He is not merely pardoned or paroled, but he is set free without any chance of the charges being brought up against him again. His sin debt has been removed and the perfect righteousness of Christ has been applied to him. 
6/10/202114 minutes, 30 seconds
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The Christian's Need for the Gospel

A follower of Jesus never graduates from the gospel. The truths of Christ's finished work encompass the entirety of your life as a Christian. You need it for justification, sanctification, and glorification. Throughout the New Testament, we are given the commands of God concerning how we live as Christians, but these commands are always rooted in the grace of God and what He has done for us.  In this episode, we see three truths, from God's Word, about how the Gospel connects to our lives as Christians The Gospel inextricably links salvation and sanctification: Ephesians 2:8-10. The Gospel teaches us to live a Christ-honoring life: Titus 2:11-14 The Gospel motivates our lives as Christians: Romans 12-16 You need the message of Christ's finished work to be saved and to live as one of His own. We couldn't be saved in our own strength, neither can we live the Christian life in our strength. We need the message of Jesus' finished work! 
6/3/202115 minutes, 1 second
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The Glory of the Gospel

The gospel of Jesus is the message that radically transforms our past, present, and future. Its facts are that He died, was buried, and rose again, however, we must not stop at these facts. What difference do these facts make? These lead us to the ramifications of the gospel. Since Jesus died, was buried, and rose again our justification, sanctification, and glorification are secured. His finished work is not just the message we need to be saved, but it is the message that we need every day of our lives.  The glory of the gospel is that we were dead, but are now alive through Christ.  The glory of the gospel is that we are now able to live for God's glory through Christ.  The glory of the gospel is that we will one day be like Jesus through His work.  There is no greater message and there is no more powerful work. For there is no greater person than the Lord Jesus Christ!
5/27/202116 minutes, 22 seconds
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Contrasting Lives: Psalm 1:3-6

There are only two paths. The way of the godly and the way of the ungodly.  In recent weeks, we have seen that the godly separate from the influence of the world by delighting and dwelling in the Word of God. Now, we see what the result of that lifestyle is. His life is greatly contrasted to the life of the ungodly. They are headed for destruction because they are not righteous in God. They may prosper in this life, but they will one day perish apart from God's grace.  Which path are you walking? 
5/20/202113 minutes, 24 seconds
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How's your relationship with God's Word?: Psalm 1:2

The godly person walks in happiness when they separate from the ungodly influence of the world by filling their mind with the truth of God's Word. They delight in God's Word. They meditate upon God's Word. Reading the Bible will not be the only thing we do, but it should fill our hearts and minds in everything we do! The Word of God must be our delight and meditation throughout the entire day.  The blessed man has two attitudes towards God's Word in Psalm 1:2: He Delights in God's Word - His pleasure and desire are centered upon the Bible.  He Meditates on God's Word - He thinks on the Bible throughout his day.  How's your relationship with God's Word? May we grow deeper in our love for the Bible. May we be more faithful in our obedience to the Bible. May we be stronger in our meditation upon the Bible! 
5/6/202115 minutes, 18 seconds
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Influence Matters: Psalm 1:1

The inaugural Psalm declares the happiness of the godly man. He is blessed because he has separated from the influence of the world and set his heart upon God's Word. Biblical happiness is not found in joyous circumstances, but contentment in God and His path.  This first episode deals with the godly man's separation from the ungodly's influence.  He avoids the advice of those who live without care for God.  He walks distinctly from those who live contrary to God.  He does not dwell among those who mock God.  The Christian should walk this path because he has been declared righteous by God and in walking this path, he will find that there is no greater pleasure than to be satisfied with God's life! 
4/29/202113 minutes, 13 seconds
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Certainties of the Christian Life (Part 2): 1 John 5:13-21

In the final episode of our journey through First John, we see some more certainties of the Christian life. The Christian will live differently because of the new nature we have received in Christ. 
4/22/202117 minutes, 12 seconds
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Certainties of the Christian Life (Part 1): 1 John 5:13-21

The Christian should not live in uncertainty but in certainty. The letter of First John was written with emphatic periods instead of uncertain question marks. In this week's episode, we embark upon a two-part journey through the final section of verses in First John. We will see five certainties about the Christian's life. Certain about Assurance of Salvation Certain about Answered Prayer Certain about the New Birth Certain about Eternal Life Certain about God's preeminence 
4/8/202121 minutes, 33 seconds
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Because Jesus Lives!: First Corinthians 15

The resurrection of Jesus Christ is a historical, factual event, but it is more than that. It has a very practical impact upon our lives today. There are three implications from First Corinthians 15 upon our lives, because Jesus is alive.  We have a Faith that is True (1-20). We have a Future that is Triumphant (20-57). We must be Faithful in the Task (58).  If Christ was not alive, we would be absolutely hopeless. Everything that we believe and do would be nothing but vanity and emptiness. However, He is not in the grave. He is alive! Now, no act of service for His glory is vanity. It does not matter how small or insignificant it may seem, our labor is not in vain when it is done in Him. This is all true because Jesus lives!
4/1/202123 minutes, 43 seconds
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The Glory of the Cross: Romans 5:6-8

The death of Jesus on the cross was not an accident. He died as the substitutionary sacrifice for the ungodly. He died for those who had wronged Him so that they might have life! This is the glorious truth of what Jesus did for us on the cross. 
3/25/202120 minutes, 48 seconds
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An Overcoming Faith: 1 John 5:4-12

The Christian is an overcomer! We overcome this world by our faith in Jesus Christ. 1 John 5:4-12 displays the truth about the certainty of our faith in Jesus. 
3/18/202119 minutes, 34 seconds
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The Union of Love and Obedience: 1 John 5:1-3

We have seen what love is and why we are to love through our study in the epistle of First John. In today's episode, we see how a Christian can know that he is displaying the love God has commanded him to display. This is revealed in loving obedience to the Word of God. We love one another best by walking in the truth because God has shown us what love is in His Word. 
3/11/202116 minutes, 2 seconds
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Love One Another (Part 2): 1 John 4:7-21

The love of God has been displayed to us through what Jesus did for us. Now, we are called to love one another. We are able to love because we are indwelt by the Spirit of God through faith in Jesus Christ. We have personally believed God's love for us, therefore, we are now able to love one another. 
3/4/202119 minutes, 23 seconds
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Love One Another (Part 1): 1 John 4:7-21

God's clarion call for Christians is that we love one another. This week we see that this command is rooted in the character of God and demonstration of His love. He is love and He has demonstrated His love towards us in sending Jesus to save us from our sins. This is what should motivate us to love one another! We have the ultimate example in Jesus Christ and this should call us to lovingly serve fellow-believers in Christ. 
2/25/202118 minutes, 56 seconds
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The Battle Between Truth and Error: 1 John 4:1-6

A battle rages between God's truth and Satan's lies. Christians have been called by God to stand firm in this battle. As we continue through First John, we see this week how Christians are to stand strong in this war. We must be vigilant. We must be discerning. We can be because greater is He that is in us than he that is in the world! 
2/18/202118 minutes, 37 seconds
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Assured in Christ!: 1 John 3:19-24

The Christian can be assured that he is in Christ. He does not have to walk through life constantly wondering if he said or did the right thing, but he can rest confidently knowing that Jesus did all that was needed to be done. Assurance comes from trusting in Jesus! 
2/11/202119 minutes, 56 seconds
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How to Know the Bible Better: A Conversation with Dean Carmichael Jr.

We dive deeper into how to study the word of God in this conversation with Dean Carmichael Jr. In this episode, we discuss the right goal of Bible study. We also dive into the importance of going into God's Word with a biblical hermeneutic. Towards the end of the discussion, we employ practical elements that will help you in your daily Bible reading. These include devotion to Christ, reading plans, and we offer some book recommendations.  Dean's Podcast links: Book Recommendations
2/2/202152 minutes, 44 seconds
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Love in Action: 1 John 3:11-18

We are repeatedly commanded by God to love throughout the Bible. This call to love is not a call to love in feeling or speech but in action. True love is always displayed by what you do. This was preeminently displayed by Jesus on the cross and His example should motivate us to put love in action!
1/28/202121 minutes, 20 seconds
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The Christian's Victory Over Sin: 1 John 3:4-10

There is a triumph for those in Christ. We have been granted victory over sin because of the new life we have in Jesus! We are no longer bound by the power of sin, but Christ has given us victory over it in our lives. Are we accessing it? 
1/21/202120 minutes, 14 seconds
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The Difference that Hope Makes: 1 John 2:28-3:3

God offers us hope in First John that can be transformative to the way you live. What is this hope? Jesus is coming and we will be like Him when He comes. This hope will motivate us to pursue a life of true holiness. It is a hope that makes a difference!
1/14/202118 minutes, 53 seconds
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Remain in the Truth: 1 John 2:18-27

A battle rages between truth and error. As followers of Jesus, we must be ready to stand true amid the lies that Satan hurls upon this world. The only answer to false teaching is to continue in the truth of God's Word! This week's episode explores First John 2:18-27 wherein John contrasts antichrists and true Christians. They contrasted by their relationship to truth. As Christians, we are called to continue in the truth! See how you can by listening to this week's edition of the taught by grace podcast.
1/7/202120 minutes, 14 seconds
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Trailer - What's new for 2021?

Join me as we look ahead to what is in store for the Taught by Grace podcast in 2021!  I'm going to be continuing the weekly studies in a passage of Scripture. Additionally, I'm looking forward to hopefully adding in episodes of bite-sized theology and discussions with other men about topics that Christians face on a daily basis. This is going to be a fantastic year as we continue learning how we are to live by God's grace for His glory! 
1/6/20211 minute, 35 seconds
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The Love God Hates: 1 John 2:15-17

Don't love the world. This is the clear command of First John 2:15-17. It isn't right for the Christian to love the world because the world is directly opposed to God. We are loved by God and have something much greater to live for, therefore, we must not love the world!
12/31/202018 minutes, 30 seconds
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The Good News of Christmas: Luke 2:8-14

Jesus came to redeem us! This is the good news of Christmas. Our hearts should be brought to worship by remembering what He has done for us in saving us!
12/22/202019 minutes, 30 seconds
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Growing up in the Family of God: 1 John 2:12-14

We grow as Christians from infancy to adolescence to adulthood to fatherhood. This is the process of growing up in the family of God. We must go through each of these stages and at each stage we play an integral role within the local church. Little children, young men, and fathers are all essential to the health of every church!
12/17/202019 minutes, 46 seconds
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The Attributes of a True Christian: 1 John 2:3-11

Those who have been saved by grace will be identified with three attributes. Obedience, Christlikeness, and love should define our lives as Christians! We can be assured of our salvation by examining what God has said should be true about those who are in Christ.
12/10/202021 minutes, 24 seconds
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An Advocate that Never Fails: 1 John 2:1-2

There is grace for the Christian when He sins and it is found in the sufficiency of Jesus Christ! He pleads for us by His righteousness and through His substitutionary death on the cross.
12/3/202021 minutes, 26 seconds
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Oh, Give thanks unto the Lord: Psalm 136

This week's edition is a special thanksgiving episode! True thanksgiving resides and flows out of the heart that remembers what God has done. The message of this Psalm is to remember who God is and what He has done. Consider His glorious power and marvelous work in your life and you will be thankful! 
11/26/202020 minutes
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Walk in the Light (Part 2): 1 John 1:1-10

Walking in the light requires that we have a biblical view of sin. It begins with gazing upon the nature of God. You must see who God is, then you will be able to live for His Glory!
11/19/202023 minutes, 53 seconds
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Walk in the Light (Part 1): 1 John 1:1-10

The book of First John is a primer on true Christianity. God reveals in this book how a Christian is to live. Today we dive into the first two episodes as part one of our study on walking in the light from chapter one. This episode launches us out into our study of the book of First John! 
11/12/202020 minutes, 25 seconds
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Christian Forgiveness: Philemon 17-25

The basis of true forgiveness is found in Jesus Christ. It is essentially impossible to forgive someone wholly when you do not do so in the grace of Christ. We must know His grace and demonstrate it to others!
11/5/202020 minutes, 24 seconds
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A Plea for Forgiveness: Philemon 8-16

There are three roles taken in this account of reconciliation. Onesimus had to return, Philemon had to receive, and Paul had to reconcile. This week, we look at Paul’s plea for forgiveness and see how these roles are played out in our lives as well.
10/29/202021 minutes
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A Model Christian: Philemon 1-7

Philemon is a book rich in truth about the gospel and forgiveness. This week, we take the first step in journeying through this book by examining the character of Philemon. This character should be every Christian’s desire!
10/22/202020 minutes, 19 seconds
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Have you seen the King?: Isaiah 6:1-8

Isaiah was a man that followed and loved God, but he still needed to be transformed by His glory. In this week's episode, we see how God transforms our lives by allowing us to gaze upon His glory and holiness. It is when we see who He really is that we see who we are and then can serve Him more fully! 
10/15/202022 minutes, 25 seconds
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Jesus, the True Vine: John 15:1-8

Jesus proclaims that He is the true vine and then calls His disciple to abide in Him. The same is true for us today! We can do nothing apart from Him so we must abide in Him through the Word and prayer!
10/8/202019 minutes, 41 seconds
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Jesus, the Resurrection and the Life: John 11:25-26

Jesus brought Lazarus back from the dead spiritually and He alone can bring men and women from the grave spiritually. This week’s episode examines how Jesus is the resurrection and the life!
9/24/202020 minutes, 51 seconds
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Jesus, The Good Shepherd: John 10:11-18

This world abounds with hirelings, thieves, and robbers. However, amid all of those there is one that is the Good Shepherd! Jesus knows us and He gave His life for us. This week, we dive into the truth that He is the Good Shepherd.
9/17/202016 minutes, 36 seconds
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Jesus, the Door of the Sheep - John 10:7-10

This week we continue through the I am statements of Jesus and consider how Jesus is the door of the sheep!
9/10/202018 minutes, 43 seconds
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Jesus, the Light of the World: John 8:12

This week we continue our study through the "I am" statements of Jesus and see Him as the light of the world.  Jesus came into this dark sinful world and brought His glorious light and life to mankind. Now, those of us, who are following Him, are called to come out from the darkness and shine as light in this dark world! 
9/3/202019 minutes, 29 seconds
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Jesus, The Bread of Life: John 6:35

This week we begin a new study through the “I am” statements of Jesus in the Gospel of John. Today we examine Jesus’ exclusive statement declaring that He is the all-sufficient bread of life!
8/27/202019 minutes, 44 seconds
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Walking with God: Genesis 5:21-24; Hebrews 11:5-6

What does it mean to walk with God? This week we examine how we can pursue a deeper walk with God through believing that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek after Him!
8/20/202021 minutes, 22 seconds
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You Serve the Lord Christ: Colossians 3:18-25

We have one master and that is the Lord Jesus Christ! We should strive to be rightly related towards those around us and work for the glory of God as well.
8/13/202019 minutes, 8 seconds
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A Christlike Lifestyle (Part Two): Colossians 3:12-17

A Christlike lifestyle is one that is ruled by peace, inhabited by God’s Word, and doing all in the name of the Lord Jesus!
8/6/202020 minutes, 50 seconds
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A Christlike Lifestyle (Part 1): Colossians 3:12-17

We are called to put on the new man. This week we take the first of two trips down Colossians 3:12-17 which shows to us what we are to put on. To be rightly related towards others, we must put on a heart of love!
7/30/202018 minutes, 49 seconds
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Christ, our All in All: Colossians 3:10-11

Our identity is not in this world, but our identity is in Christ! He is the all in all of our lives as believers. This week we begin to examine life in the new man and this lifestyle begins with a right understanding of who we are in Christ. We have received a new mind and new identity.
7/23/202019 minutes, 38 seconds
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Putting Sin to Death in Your Life: Colossians 3:5-9

Sin is not be played with or enjoyed, rather it is to be killed. We examine Colossians 3:5-9 this week and see how we can crucify the flesh so that we can live for God’s glory!
7/16/202021 minutes, 2 seconds
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A Christ-Centered Focus: Colossians 3:1-4

This week, we begin a study through Colossians chapter three. We will examine what it means to set our affection on things above! Christ has given us life and because of that, we must set our heart on Him. If you enjoy the podcast, please consider subscribing and sharing with someone else!
7/9/202017 minutes, 41 seconds
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A Grace-Taught Life: Titus 2:11-14

In this episode, we examine what God’s grace means for our daily lives. There are some misunderstandings about God’s grace, but we see in Titus 2:11-14 what the impact of grace is on the Christian’s life. God has called us to be Christlike by His grace and for His glory!
7/2/202020 minutes, 4 seconds
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Taught by Grace - Trailer

Introducing this podcast about living the Christian life for the glory of God and by the grace of God!
6/25/20202 minutes, 44 seconds