Exhortations

Will You Turn and Walk Away… Or Seek Him with All Your Heart?

Posted on May 1, 2017 by Kevin in Exhortations.

 

Yeshua, therefore, said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you: if you do not eat the flesh of the Son of Man, and do not drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves…. For My flesh is true food, and My blood is true drink.” …Then many of His disciples, having heard, said, “This word is hard. Who is able to listen to it?” …And from this time, many of His disciples went away backward, and were walking with Him no more. (John 6:53, mjlt)

How well-attended would our congregations be if we eliminated the experience? Or the ritual? What would happen if we took away the “energetic worship,” or the multi-media presentations, or the “relevant” messages that guarantee our encouragement and comfort? This is what my generation—and younger—craves (whether we know it, or admit it, or not), and it is according to these elements that many decide where and with whom we will “worship.” But while older generations may pursue a bit more subdued set of criteria—more traditions, less volume, less technology—where (and whether) we attend services is still about the religious experience. Take that away, and we have no idea what to do with the leftovers—we don’t know how to relate to one another in Messiah, and we don’t know how to make disciples. >> Read more…

For Our Passover Was Sacrificed

Posted on April 3, 2017 by Kevin in Exhortations.

 

This month, all over the world, most Jewish families will be recounting their ancestors’ ancient Exodus from Egypt through the annual tradition of the Passover seder. Sadly, many of them will also fail to hear of the true meaning of God’s salvation and sacrifice.

According to the Torah, it is not only Israel’s responsibility to perform the Passover sacrifice each year, but also parents’ responsibility to explain the purpose of the sacrifice to their children, as captured in the following father/son exchange from Perfect Word Ministries’ Messianic Passover Haggadah, Behold the Lamb.

>> Read more…

Sharing the Messiah in You

Posted on March 6, 2017 by Kevin in Exhortations.

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And this is the message that we have heard from Him, and announce to you: that God is light, and darkness in Him is not at all. If we say, “We have sharing with Him,” but walk in the darkness, we lie, and do not do the truth. But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have sharing one with another, and the blood of Yeshua, His Son, cleanses us from every sin. (1 John 1:5-7, mjlt)

The entire message and purpose of the Good News of Yeshua is predicated on the idea of sharing. God shares Himself with His Son, they share themselves with us (see John 17), and we in turn share the Messiah in us with our fellow man—both believers and unbelievers. But the most important thing we need to take away from John’s exhortation about the sharing is that we as Messiah’s disciples have the power and ability to short-circuit this critical process; “if we walk in the darkness, we lie,” and we block God’s light from ourselves, making us unable to share that light with anyone else.

Our ability to share the light of Messiah, then, is an exact reflection of the quality and character of our daily walk with Yeshua. >> Read more…

Does the Bible Say God Won’t Give You More Than You Can Handle?

Posted on February 3, 2017 by Kevin in Exhortations.

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Your loved one is lying there, helpless, struggling in pain. In the sterility of the hospital room, you sit by the bedside—praying, seeking God, wanting desperately to offer an encouragement of assurance or a glimmer of hope. As you agonizingly watch the face of your loved one, you suddenly notice the sluggishly opening eyes; and as they fall on you, you sense the inner urging to speak that word of comfort, “God won’t give you more than you can handle.” It is a loving word—a compassionate word—and it is spoken with the best of intentions. But sadly, the endurance of life’s trials are not quite that simple… and unfortunately, that’s not what the Scriptures say. >> Read more…

Post-Truth or Consequences

Posted on January 8, 2017 by Kevin in Exhortations.

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For “if the truth of God abounded more to His glory in my falsehood, why am I still also judged as a sinner?” (Romans 3:7, mjlt)

Redefining what is true based upon one’s own self-centered perspective is nothing new. People have been trying to get away with this—rejecting objective facts and reality—forever. What Paul’s Roman audience hadn’t quite figured out yet (but were well on their way to discovering), was that there is no defense for changing the truth into a falsehood, nor a legitimate justification for it before God. No, in order to successfully twist the truth and feel blissfully uncondemned about doing it, we have to ignore God altogether.

And so here we find ourselves today—evading God’s righteous judgement, reinventing truth as we deem fit—and it is all being done under its audacious, new name: post-truth. >> Read more…