Are you exiled from God?

What did God even mean when He said He had “led captivity captive”?

This is a truth from Psalm 68, which Paul reiterated in Ephesians 4. Our Lord Jesus Christ, when he defeated the enemy, took into exile the very concept of exile.

Here’s the joy for the people of God. The answer to the question in the headline is, if you have trusted in Jesus Christ for your salvation,

No! You are not and cannot be exiled from God. He is your Father and loves you.

There is great joy in that.

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Note: You can share this poster on Facebook here.

Are all Christians hypocrites? A response to a Bill Hybels supporter

I know it must grow wearying to many Jesus-lovers to hear of one Christian leader after another being accused of sexual sins and even crimes.  I become weary too, but not because I believe the accusations are false or nit-picky. No, I’m glad for any such truths that are coming out, and I’m glad criminals and hypocrites are being exposed. It’s the hypocrisy itself I grow weary of.

Bill Hybels

The hypocrisy was especially brought to my attention this time in an article my husband told me about a couple of days ago, which defended one of the recently accused, Bill Hybels (who has been accused of long-term adultery as well as attempts at seduction, allegations against whom can be found here and here and here).

The article I’m replying to, published by Christian Today (not Christianity Today) is hereContinue reading “Are all Christians hypocrites? A response to a Bill Hybels supporter”

How to handle those “forgive and forget” Scriptures

Occasionally I’ve talked with friends who have feared they haven’t really forgiven the person who harmed them. “I keep thinking about the harm,” she might say. “It keeps hurting. So that makes me think I haven’t really forgiven.”

It’s not only a common feeling, but also a common accusation.

“You’re still talking about that? You must not have forgiven. You must just be bitter.

After all, forgive and forget. Continue reading “How to handle those “forgive and forget” Scriptures”

Should you love yourself? A response to Desiring God

Before the Rachael Denhollander news stories, before the Turpin family tragedy broke,  I received a letter from a young woman, Lyndall Cave,  sending me a Desiring God article called “Do You Love Yourself Enough?” (link).

She said,

[One book I’m reading] talks a lot about loving yourself. Every time I read that phrase, I flinch, because my theology in the past has been based on the idea that I’m sinful and thus there’s nothing about myself to love. This article from Desiring God [“Do You Love Yourself Enough?”] sums up the viewpoint perfectly.  

 But what about God’s grace? What about the work of Jesus on the cross, that purifies us, and our new natures now that we’re in Christ? I’m conflicted at the moment. Where does self-love fit with the Gospel? Am I sinful? Am I a worthless worm? Is there really nothing good in me? What about “I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made”?  

Continue reading “Should you love yourself? A response to Desiring God”

A Christian Carol (or, Living in the Spirit Present)

a guest post by Tim Davis

Moses Guiltersleeve was dead. There was no doubt about that.

How then did his deep, condemning voice still speak from the stone-carved doorknocker?

“Ebenezer Skewed, Ebenezer Skewed! In death I am your partner!”

Eben bowed his head in shame. Of course Moses was right, Eben was as good as dead—that he knew full well. He had certainly been reminded often enough. Continue reading “A Christian Carol (or, Living in the Spirit Present)”

A better motivator for Christian service than gratitude

It’s the season of Advent, and I’m enjoying wonderful songs about the birth of our Savior; this season it’s ones like Lauren Daigle’s “The Light of the World” and Francesca Battistelli’s “You’re Here.” These songs increase my deep joy and gratitude for our Lord Jesus Christ’s willingness to descend to earth and accomplish our great salvation for us, freeing us from sin and death and calling us to Himself. I sometimes stand stunned with gratitude at the outpouring of His grace.

But this gratitude is not my motivator to serve Him. Continue reading “A better motivator for Christian service than gratitude”