Solve this thing

2017 05 20 - Councel of NiceneStreet protests. Vicious graffiti. Warring social media posts. Words flew and households were divided. Then, a wise leader pulled key decision-makers together to try to solve this thing.

No, not current politics. This was something threatening peace and stability 1,692 years ago. It all centered around Jesus — was he God or something less than God? Some said God originally lived alone, then created Jesus and Jesus in turn created everything else; in other words, Jesus was not divine. Others said Jesus was fully God, not subordinate to God. And some tried for a compromised middle ground view.

Arguments raged in the Roman Empire. Pamphleteers had a heyday. Finally Emperor Constantine brought together 200 or so bishops for what became known as the First Council of Nicene, which, according to some sources, began on this date in 325. After weeks of debate, the bishops agreed that Jesus is truly God. They issued what became known as The Nicene Creed.

Athanasius, one of the bishops, summarized it all beautifully.
“Jesus that I know as my redeemer cannot be less than God.”

Amen!

Solve this thing

Questions matter

2017 03 18 - questions EngageWhat’s the best way to help my small group absorb scripture? How can we encourage more discussion in our adult Sunday School class? Why is it so silent whenever I ask, “Any more questions?” How did Jesus keep his audience’s attention so well? What can I learn from Jesus as a teacher?

Watch your inbox for a link to Entrust’s quarterly eMagazine, Engage, March 21. It’s all about questions.

Questions matter

Life in Jesus

Ever feel like you’re suffering for your faith? Left out, picked on, put down, disregarded, maybe? Those things can hurt. Yet, consider those in other nations who literally face imprisonment, even death, because they unswervingly follow Jesus Christ. Author Os Guiness asks, “If Jesus is worth a painful death, is He not worth an uncomfortable life? We’re all going to need to figure out how to seek our life and joy primarily in Jesus—through prayer, Bible reading, and church fellowship—so that the loss of anything else, whether it be job, friends, family, or possessions, will seem a small thing by comparison.”

Seek your life in Jesus! Nothing else matters in the end!

Praying at sunset

Life in Jesus

Happy Boxing Day

No one in the U.S. knows exactly know what that means. Maybe it’s a day to:

• wear the new shorts you got for Christmas.
• hit the gym after all the ginger snaps and egg nog.
• duke it out with your little brother.
• parade your medium-sized, short-haired dog in festive holiday wear.
• have your ears roughed up by grandma because you’ve been naughty.
• write a letter to the junior senator from California.
• take out your recycling.

Or not. Ask a Canadian. Or a Brit. Or an Australian. Then, whether you choose to “box” or not, hang on to the reason for the season. That’s Jesus. Who can’t be put into a box. But who is alive, and loves you, and is bigger and better than any gift you’ll ever find in any box.

pug7
Happy Boxing Day

Never lose that heart

JWrist bandagingesus loves it when we take care of the hungry and the thirsty, the poor and the prisoner, the sick and the homeless. (See Matthew 25). Historically, Christians are, to be honest, quite good at this. Hospitals, clinics, orphanages, homeless shelters, soup kitchens, counseling services, prison ministries, schools, literacy programs, are more often than not launched and run by Christians – in the U.S. and worldwide.

While we know we don’t earn our salvation – we don’t do any of this to try to score points with God – we do know God has done everything for us in Christ Jesus. The least we can do is give a cup of cold water or a bowl of warm soup to a hurting brother or sister on this planet.

Let’s never lose that heart. Serve others as though serving Jesus himself. Because, you are.

Never lose that heart