The Church is an interesting thing. Normally when we think of church we think of a place, and sadly when we think of church, our impressions of it are not that good.
Author Anne Rice, in "Called Out of Darkness: A Spiritual Confession," has a powerful personal story about her relationship with Jesus.
What is the goal of the church? Ask 10 people and you will get 10 different answers to that question.
Bible is proof enough for Creation account.
The effects of sin, forgiven or not, are far-reaching. There is a misconception that many in the church seem to hold today; a misconception regarding sin and its consequences.
"Dishonest tax collectors and other notorious sinners often came to listen to Jesus' sermons; but this caused complaints from the Jewish religious leaders and the experts on Jewish law because he was associating with such despicable people -- even eating with them!" (Luke 15:1 2, The Living Bible).
It's OK to doubt the Bible on your journey to Jesus Christ. Doubts are interesting things.
Easter is just around the corner. People who don't normally go to church will be in church on Easter Sunday -- I think that is great.
Apparently one of the most popular shows on television these days is History Channel's "The Bible," the first of this series attracting some 27 million viewers, and over the weeks the numbers have remained high.
Last week in my column I introduced you to Linda and Bob (not their real names).
Suffering exists to remind us of the importance of God.
My wife and I were channel surfing (that's the only surfing I know how to do) when we came across a program that looked somewhat interesting.
At Gateway, we are in a series I've titled "Friends." I am told that we in Western society are more connected than ever through social media; we are more connected yet more isolated than ever before.
A few years ago the working definition of tolerance changed.
Jan. 22 will mark the 44th anniversary of Roe v. Wade. Since that landmark decision, 55 million innocent lives have been ruthlessly murdered on the altar of convenience.
Over these last few weeks I have been asking you to consider the possibility that the accounts of Jesus as recorded by the Gospel writers (Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John) might in fact be true; the evidence of the effect Jesus had on history certainly gives one sufficient evidence to contemplate.
Last week we began an examination of the Christmas story.
At the heart of the story of Christmas is the birth of a baby. For centuries, scholars, skeptics and people of faith have questioned the identity of this baby.
We are coming into the Christmas season, and this past Sunday, in the liturgical calendar was Bethlehem Sunday.
One of the great misconceptions many hold when it comes to the idea of heaven is the belief that if one's good works outweigh their bad deeds, they will get into heaven.
By time you read this column, election day 2012 will have passed. Some of you are happy with the results of the elections, others not so happy.
In a few short days, America returns to the polls for an important election.
As I write this column, many are preparing for Halloween celebrations.
On Saturday of last week and then again on Monday of this week, two different articles crossed my desk reporting that one in five Americans declare themselves religious but unaffiliated with any church or denominations.
As scientific evidence accrues, the realization that we are not here by blind chance is becoming abundantly clear.
On Monday of this week I had to perform a task that no pastor likes to perform -- I had to officiate a double memorial service for a family.
Have you ever noticed that there are those who go to extremes in their effort to discount the Christian faith?
One of the more common accusations leveled at Christianity is the charge that we are too narrow, too restrictive.
Let me begin this column with an illustration. Please understand that what I am writing is only for illustrative purposes.
Look around you. Crosses are everywhere. They decorate our houses of worship; they are used as art in our homes; we wear them as pieces of jewelry; and in a new trend, I see many young people displaying crosses as body art.
Rabbinic Judaism began its development during the Babylonian captivity.
The new atheists are fond of claiming that all the wars in the world have been caused by religion, yet when you challenge them to name the wars waged in the name of religion, they stumble over themselves at a loss to name more than one war: the Crusades.
Arnold Toynbee once observed, "Most people have not rejected Christianity but rather a caricature of it."
In my recent series of columns, I have been dealing with the subject of true Christianity.
In my last two columns, we have been examining an issue of eternal importance, namely, what is a real Christian?
In my last column, we began to explore an issue which came to me via email, titled, "You might not be a Christian."
I have been a Christian for some 52 years now.
There is a growing myth that needs to be exposed.
More and more we are hearing the phrase "freedom of worship" coming from the White House. Few see the danger in this subtle change of words by our current administration from the traditional "freedom of religion."
How often have you heard someone exclaim, "We are all children of God"?. If you accept the authority of the Bible, then you recognize that statement to be false. Generally, those who express this wrong belief do so under the also mistaken belief that everyone goes to heaven anyhow.
"I'm into spirituality, I'm not into religion.". That is a statement I hear more and more it seems every day. This "spirituality" is an interesting thing -- it seems to be an eclectic mix of various parts of various religious views, taking what one likes from each and leaving
Have you ever noticed that whether a death is an untimely one, such as the death of a young person, an expected one, after a long period of suffering, or a natural one, after a long and productive life, those left behind always think that the death was too soon?
It seems that we live in an age where many who profess that they are Christians see no reason to attend church. I hear it all the time from various people. "Oh, I worship with my family at home." Or "I get my church from watching Dr. So and So on television." Or "I worship on the golf course or in my hunting stand... I don't need to be in church to worship."
In last week's column, I concluded my thoughts on the church by stating that if we were to be obedient Christ followers, and enjoy the full benefits of our walk with Him, we cannot isolate ourselves from the fellowship of believers, from the church.
"I'm a Christian but I don't believe in the church; I can worship at home." As a pastor, I cannot even begin to count how many times I have heard statements like this. Let's examine that concept a little. Can a person really be a Christian and yet not be involved in a local fellowship?
Recently I have been inundated with a flux of materials whose common theme is the imminent demise of the church. Let me just use the words of Mark Twain here who, upon hearing that the New York Times had published his obituary, said, "The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated."
Hard to believe that another year has come and gone. Years ago Alvin Toffler wrote in his book, "Future Shock," "The years skip by at an ever accelerating pace." When I read those words, I was a young man just beginning pre-medical studies at the University of Pittsburgh. I did not understand those words back then; I do today. My goodness where have the years gone?
Probably the most familiar words of the Christmas story are that of the angels who appeared to the shepherds and proclaimed, "Glory to God in the highest and on earth peace, good will toward men." (Luke 2:14 KJV).
If this year is anything like previous years, there will be a plethora of PBS specials and investigative news reports all discussing one thing: the Virgin Birth of Jesus.
Every Christmas, without fail, someone will ask me if Christians should celebrate Christmas.. Generally, the idea that we should not celebrate it comes from either the concept that the holiday has become so commercial as to have lost its true meaning (and should we propagate that commercialism?) or from the