Morning Musing: Colossians 3:10b

“You are being renewed in knowledge according to the image of your Creator.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

As far as genre goes, dystopian future novels tend to be a pretty unrealistic bunch. They imagine things being either much worse than they likely will be, much more technologically advanced than they’ll be, or both. They reflect either too great an optimism about the future, too great a pessimism, or, again, both. These features, unrealistic as they may be, are also what make them fun to read. They variously give us hope in what tomorrow might be and comfort that we aren’t as bad as we could be. Of all the entries into the genre, though, there are two that have proven to be the most prophetic of the bunch in their outlook. These are A Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley, and 1984, by George Orwell. Although their respective visions of the future are not the same – in some ways they are opposites – something very similar lies in both of their hearts: The future will be marked by lies. Well, that may be where we are in the future relative to those books, but in another sense, it’s where we’ve always been. This morning, I want to talk about truth, lies, and the Gospel.

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Morning Musing: Ephesians 6:14-18

“Stand, therefore, with truth like a belt around your waist, righteousness like armor on your chest, and your feet sandaled with readiness for the gospel of peace. In every situation take up the shield of faith with which you can extinguish the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit–which is the word of God. Pray at all times in the Spirit with every prayer and request, and stay alert with all perseverance and intercession for all the saints.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

Last Thursday we started a short conversation about the armor of God. The two conclusions we came to then were that in the great battle we face as followers of Jesus, people are not our enemy, and our primary function as warriors in God’s army is to stand firm and resist the enemy’s attacks. Our place is not to go on the offensive to advance God’s kingdom. That’s God’s job. We follow Him, and we actively share our faith, but we must always make sure He is out front. We come in with love and the gentle spirit of Jesus. No one will be forced into the kingdom. That whole conversation, though, was a preface to talking about the armor itself. This morning, let’s continue our conversation by looking at the armor God has provided us.

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Digging in Deeper: 1 Corinthians 13:7

“It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

One of the ideas theologians like to discuss on occasion is “common grace.” The argument here is that God has given all people a portion of grace whether they believe in Him or not. This is a function of our being created in His image. All of us – every, single one – reflect God’s character in at least some capacity. It may be a very small capacity, but it’s not nothing. This means that every single person is capable of getting life right from the perspective of God’s kingdom. Most of us don’t do that with anything resembling perfect consistency, but we’re all capable of it. What has me thinking about this today is a show I’ve been watching lately that offers up a perfect example of this. It’s not made by Christians (to my knowledge), and certainly doesn’t reflect the Christian worldview in any meaningful way, but it has a moment when it hits the nail on the head. Let’s talk this morning about one of the latest offerings from AppleTV: Schmigadoon.

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Morning Musing: Proverbs 14:25

“A truthful witness rescues lives, but one who utters lies is deceitful.” (CSB – Read the chapter)

What value is there in truth? Do lies really hurt? We live today in a culture in which truth is a bit of a fluid concept. We speak of having “my truth” as if that can be different from your truth or even the truth. Indeed, if there is such a thing as your truth and my truth, can there even be something that is the truth? Perhaps more importantly, does it really even matter? What’s wrong with these fluid concepts of truth? I’ve been watching a show lately that puts on display just why living in the truth matters so much. Let’s talk this morning about the HBO miniseries, Chernobyl.

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Two Are Better than One

This week we pick back up our teaching series, Love Like Jesus. From our conversation a couple of weeks ago we understand a bit better why loving like Jesus is such a big and important deal (especially for followers of Jesus), but we still need to see it in action. We need examples. What does it look like to love like Jesus. Let’s look together at a story that gives us one of the best pictures we can find in the Gospels.

Two Are Better than One

I want today’s message to be sticky, so we’re going to start out here by talking about glue. Literally, not metaphorically. Have you ever used a two-component epoxy glue before? Admittedly I didn’t know that much about them and had to do a bit of research this week. Epoxies are glues that are chemically activated and form bonds at a molecular level. This makes them much, much stronger than your average bottle of Elmer’s best. Some epoxies use just a single substance that does the trick. Some, though, use two different substances. That’s why they call them two-component epoxies. I know, this is complicated stuff today.

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