Circle-cross symbol over black fist

Trump: God’s Minister

A pyramid symbol appeared on the worship screen at church yesterday morning. I’ve seen it on many Sundays since last August. Another symbol popped up for the first time: five pillars against a red, white, and blue background. I saw a precursor during Advent last month, when the weekly ‘message minder’ featured five candles, not…

Jesus cleansing the temple

Den of Thieves

“My house shall be called a house of prayer, but you have made it a den of thieves.” – Matthew 21:13[1][2] Why did Jesus clear the temple of “those who bought and sold” (Matthew 21:12, Mark 11:15, Luke 19:45)? Why did he “overturn the tables of the money changers, and the seats of those who…

hiding behind a curtain

What’s Holding You Back?

When I look at the persecuted church today, I’m baffled. These “secret” believers don’t tell their family, friends, or co-workers that they’re Christians. They don’t preach in public either. I want to ask them, “What’s holding you back – torture, losing your job?” These dangers are real. Yet the early church didn’t exist in secret.…

The spirit of Pentecost

The Wonderful Works of God

“We do hear them speak in our tongues the wonderful works of God.” – Acts 2:11[1] “Jesus” is a modern English translation of the nominative Latin Iēsūs or Iēsous, which is a transliteration of Ἰησοῦς in Koine Greek (Strong’s).[2] This name is itself a transliteration of Yēshūăʿ in Late Hebrew, the Classical Hebrew name being…

It is finished - Jesus Christ on the cross

Call His Name JESUS

“She shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS, for he shall save his people from their sins.” – Matthew 1:21[1] [Please see “The Wonderful Works of God” for the correct etymology of “Jesus” and “Yeshua.”] Tomorrow is Good Friday. On this day, nearly two thousand years ago, Jesus Christ died…

Open up the Heavens

When Jesus Christ was baptized in the Jordan River, the heaven or heavens “opened.”[1] [See Matthew 3:16-17, Mark 1:9-11, and Luke 3:21-22.] The Holy Spirit descended like a dove as God the Father spoke audibly to everyone present. It was a public event. Heaven won’t open again publicly until Jesus’ Second Coming (Revelation 19:11). God’s…

Saved Through Faith

“By grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves. It is the gift of God.” – Ephesians 2:8[1] Do we have real faith in Jesus Christ, or have we embraced a clever counterfeit? Is what we believe about God true, or are we living a Disney fantasy? How do we know that…

In Spirit and In Truth

“The hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth, for the Father is seeking such to worship him. God is Spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and in truth.” – John 4:23-24[1] I attend a large Southern Baptist church. Yesterday…

The Sacrificial Life

After I learned the full horror of the Trail of Tears (1838-39), I was tempted to identify with my Cherokee ancestors and other Native American tribes by taking up their vengeful cause. But I resisted. I was also tempted to identify with other Christian women by seeking full equality in the church. Again, I resisted.…

Nothing but the Blood

“Who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean? No one!” – Job 14:4[1] In his loneliness, misery, and pain, Job stated a partial truth here. Because of a sinful nature that hates goodness and loves evil, no human being can produce cleanliness from an unclean spirit. Human effort is not enough. It can…