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Showing posts from November 5, 2018

Poor Doubting Thomas

Bible Reading: John 20:24-29Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!   John 20:27Not many people have nice things to say about the disciple Thomas.After Jesus rose from the dead and appeared to the disciples behind closed doors, Thomas wasn’t with them. So when the disciples told Thomas that Jesus was alive, he didn’t believe them. “I won’t believe it,” he said, “unless I see the nail wounds in his hands, put my fingers into them, and place my hand into the wound in his side” (John 20:25). When Jesus later appeared to Thomas, the Lord took him up on his offer. He said, “Put your finger here and see my hands. Put your hand into the wound in my side. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!” (verse 27).Talk about it: What do you think of Thomas? Is he a model for our faith—or would it have been better to leave his story out of the Bible?Okay, so Thomas wasn’t as bad as Judas, the guy who betrayed Jesus. He might not even have been as awful as Peter, who denied the Lord three times. But of…

A Difference That Counts

Bible Reading: 1 Corinthians 6:11Now your sins have been washed away, and you have been set apart for God.   1 Corinthians 6:11Suppose you’re chatting with a non-Christian about Jesus. You think you’re getting your point across with your gentle and ultrawise persuasion—until you get bopped over the head with this line: “Well,” your friend smirks, “people who are dead stay that way. They don’t rise from the dead.”You can’t make Jesus rise again in a laboratory. But you can point to the Bible for evidence of the empty tomb. Along with that, you can supply an additional sign of life: the change that happens to people when they trust Jesus.Talk about it: Do you think that the changed lives of Christians prove anything about the truth of what we believe?Suppose you are a non-Christian. You have a friend who one day says, “You know, a year ago I trusted Jesus. He’s totally changed my life. I used to scream at my parents. I always trash-talked my little sister. I was totally selfish. I’m not…

Through the Knothole

Bible Reading: Romans 8:28-30And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.   Romans 8:28NORMAN ROCKWELL WAS a famous twentieth-century American painter. Many of his paintings were originally created for magazine covers, which made Rockwell one of the most famous artists of his time.One of Rockwell’s paintings depicted a little boy watching a baseball game through a knothole in the ballpark fence. The boy presses his eye tightly against the hole, but he can see only straight ahead. He can’t see anything to either side of the field, and he’s blind to anything that happens close to the fence. The players and umpires on the field and the spectators in the stands can see the whole game. But the boy looking through the knothole can only see a small part of what’s going on.We are like the boy looking through the knothole. Our view of life is like his view of that baseball game. We don’t know what g…

Bad Influences

Bible Reading: Psalm 1:1-6Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers.   Psalm 1:1, NIVTHERE ONCE WAS a young woman who was being shown around a large coal-mining camp in West Virginia along with a group of businesspeople. All the others on the tour were dressed in jeans and work shirts, while she wore a sparkling white dress.As the group prepared to enter the rickety old elevator that would take them down a shaft into the underground coal mine, their guide paused and looked at the woman in the white dress.“Are you sure you want to go down to the mines, ma’am?” he asked her.The woman looked slightly offended. “Well, why not?”The man cleared his throat nervously. “You’re wearing a white dress,” he said.“Anyone can see that,” the woman answered. “There’s nothing to prevent me from wearing a white dress into a coal mine if I want to.”The man nodded and shrugged. “Yes, ma’am,” he said as he closed the door …