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How Lovely Are Your Dwelling Places, O Lord: A Song of Solace, Comfort, and Beauty

Posted on Jul 7, 2015 in Grace, Salvation | 1 comment

by Arnfield P. Cudal   – We live in perilous times. Our generation has witnessed a world that has become increasingly dangerous and uncertain. As Christians are being persecuted and killed in greater numbers than at any other time in history, our hearts wax in grief and sorrow. As we witness the decline in our nation’s morality and testimony, our hearts wane at the rampant evil, degradation, and ugliness that bombard and surround us.   Just as the Psalmist pined, “My soul longs, yea, even faints for the courts of the LORD: my heart and my flesh cries out for the living God” (Psalm 84), there is indeed a place we can go to for rest, respite, and solace. The Psalms are a place of purity and beauty.   The Psalms exclaim that God’s word is pure (Psalm 119). His...

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Does the Church Worship on the Sabbath Day?

Posted on Jun 28, 2015 in Christian Freedom, Featured, Grace | 3 comments

by George Gunn – A key distinction between Israel and the Church involves Sabbath observance. Neglect in distinguishing between Israel and the Church has caused great confusion over the significance of the Sabbath. Traditional supersessionist thinking has caused many Christians view Sunday as the “Christian Sabbath,” and that by going to church on Sunday, one is obeying the Third Commandment (as, for example, the Westminster Confession of Faith, ch. XXI). Others, taking a more literal interpretation of the Sabbath commandment, think that they must keep Saturday as the appropriate day of worship (Seventh Day Adventists, Seventh Day Baptists, and some Messianic congregations). Both of these positions have problems, and observance of proper dispensational distinctions helps us to think correctly about the Sabbath. The very first reference in Scripture to the Sabbath is in connection with the creation week when...

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An Alternative to the Vanity of Life

Posted on May 25, 2015 in Featured, Grace, Manhood, Spiritual Formation | 1 comment

by Cory Marsh – The philosophical and theological masterpiece called Ecclesiastes is framed by the superlative construct “Vanity of vanities” (Eccl 1:2; Eccl 12:8). In the midst of this inclusio, out of his personal experience, Solomon provides ample reasons why he thought “all of life is vanity.” This declaration is the result of Solomon exploring such life-topics as pleasure and work (Eccl 2:1-11), wealth (2:18-26), friendship (Eccl 4:7-16), religion (5:1-6:9), and even wisdom itself (2:12-27). All of these are shown to be, in the ultimate sense, unfulfilling. The translated word chosen to convey this concept in the ESV Bible is “vanity.” While “vanity” conjures up thoughts of selfish pride and conceit here in the West—a nuance lacking in its Hebrew root—the word should be understood in its Semitic context as “vanity” appears in Ecclesiastes a total of 38 times....

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Does 1 John 1:9 Affirm that Believers Should Confess Their Sins?

Posted on May 15, 2015 in Featured, Forgiveness, Grace | 1 comment

by Roger Fankhauser [1] – First John 1:9 makes a very clear statement, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” However, not all agree on who “we” identifies. Some take it as believers only, some take it as a “collective we” so it includes all people, and some take it as a reference to unbelievers. The first approach takes the passage as a sanctification issue for believers; the next two approaches take the passage as a justification issue. The second approach sees a mixed audience, taking the passage as a reminder to believers of their justification and thus looks back to their justification while at the same time making a statement to unbelievers. The third approach limits the audience of 1:9 to unbelievers. Which view...

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Persecuted Christians and the Psalms: Lessons We Can Learn

Posted on May 15, 2015 in Featured, Grace, Hope, Music, Persecution | 1 comment

by Arnfield Cudal   – (Kamran is a Pakistani pastor who I met in Thailand. This is his story.)   I am Kamran from Kasur, Pakistan. I was born into a Christian family and at age fifteen I accepted Jesus Christ as my personal Savior. Pakistan is an Islamic country and ever since childhood, I felt a vast difference between Islam and Christianity. Here the Muslim majority frequently harasses Christians, but we’ve learned to live under this oppression and accept that religious discrimination and intimidation is a normal part of our life. About eight years ago, I finished my Bachelor’s degree in Theology and began a small church on the street where our family and four other Christian families lived. According to the Pakistan Act of 1973, (religious) minorities are permitted to live their lives and practice their beliefs....

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How Does the Doctrine of Eternal Security Affect our Pastoral Theology?

Posted on Jun 3, 2014 in Gospel, Grace, Salvation, Theology | 5 comments

by Ernest Lockngenu – Commonly called by earlier theologians the perseverance of the saints, the doctrine of eternal security affirms that once an individual is saved by the grace of God, he will never fall totally and finally from that stated but, he shall be “kept by the power of God through faith unto salvation.” H. A. Ironside wrote, “Once a poor sinner has been regenerated by the Word and the Spirit of God, once he has received a new life and a new nature, has been made partaker of the divine nature, once he has been justified from every charge before the throne of God, it is absolutely impossible that that man should ever again be a lost soul.”[1] Though this doctrine was developed and exposed by reckoned reformers such as John Calvin, it should be noted that...

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