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smelling good

Quite a number of my friends wear fragrances. But before long, the fragrance wears off and they have to spray on more to continue to smell good! What happens between two important dates in a person’s life determines whether his name will be an alluring fragrance or a repulsive stench. The dates... read more »

not idle words

With an estimated 6 billion copies sold, the Bible is the world’s best-selling book. The average American owns three or four copies of the Bible. In a 2012 survey, however, 18 percent of churchgoers revealed that they rarely or never read the Bible, and 22 percent said they did so just once a... read more »

widows and children

Widows were the epitome of the destitute and desperate in ancient Jewish society. In his gospel, Luke often wrote of widows and their journeys of faith: the prophetess Anna who saw the newborn Messiah (Luke 2:36-38); the widow of Zarephath who ministered to Elijah (Luke 4:26; 1 Kings 17:18-19); the... read more »

tears in heaven

One of my favorite songs is the 1993 Grammy award-winning Tears in Heaven. It’s an intimate song that Eric Clapton wrote to help him heal from the loss and pain of the accidental death of his 4-year-old son. Rooted in tragedy and grief, Eric expresses the hope of seeing his son again. He wrote of... read more »

God of the living

The Sadducees were more interested in politics than religion—accepting only the Pentateuch (the five books of Moses) as their Scripture. Being materialists in their thinking, they didn’t believe in angels, nor in the resurrection (Luke 20:27; Acts 23:8). The Sadducees gave Jesus a hypothetical... read more »

get even?

During a convocation speech at a major Christian university in 2012, business magnate and TV celebrity Donald Trump told 10,000 students that the way to succeed in business is to “get even,” igniting an outcry from critics who said that Trump’s philosophy was inconsistent with Christian... read more »

named

After telling a Bible story, the teacher asked his Sunday school class, “What’s the name of the beggar?” Six-year-old Tommy confidently shouted, “Lazarus!” The teacher then asked another question: “What is the name of the other man?” Another student shouted, “Rich man!” Nothing... read more »

blameless

Pastor guilty of bilking money from elderly woman . . . Church elder convicted of accounting fraud . . . Pastor of megachurch accused of financial misappropriation. Headlines like these tell of an insidious sin that has plagued the church since it began (Acts 5:1-5; Romans 16:17-18; 1 Timothy... read more »

search and rescue

Search and Rescue Stories is a website that captures the accounts of people who have participated in search and rescue missions or of the victims who were dramatically rescued from dangerous and life-threatening situations. There you’ll read nail-biting and heart-warming stories of the rescuers... read more »

rotten fruit

There’s a “quick sale” area in my local supermarket where fruit is offered at a huge discount. If not sold quickly, the fully ripened edibles will become soft, flabby, and infected with fungus. In Amos’ day, Israel was militarily strong and economically rich. But prosperity increased the gap... read more »
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