Jerusalem’s Church of the Holy Sepulchre Shows Our Need for a Savior

How the site demonstrates the need for the place it hallows.

One of the biggest surprises to Christian pilgrims in Jerusalem occurs when they step inside the Church of the Holy Sepulchre. The site of Jesus’ crucifixion and resurrection falls short of the expectations of many Christians accustomed to Western worship.

Gold drips from icons. Chanting fills the spaces. Incense rises between cold stone walls. Six sects of Christendom betray jealous rivalries over the goings-on within. Territorial fistfights even occur on occasion.

The Holy Sepulchre's dome covers Christ's tomb

(Photo: The Holy Sepulchre’s dome covers Christ’s tomb. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

Without proper mental preparation, a Christian pilgrim may see only the distracting depravity of religion that has affixed itself to this site like barnacles on sunken treasure.

But if we look past today’s traditionalism to history’s tradition, we find an unbroken connection to the central event of all time—the redemption of the universe.

For in this place, Jesus Christ died for your sins and rose again.

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You Have a Spiritual Freedom You May Not Realize

Juneteenth offers an essential reminder to our spiritual lives

Freedom from anything begins by knowing you are free. Juneteenth is short for June 19th—a state holiday in Texas. It commemorates the day in 1865 that good news arrived.

You Have a Spiritual Freedom You May Not Realize

(Photo by Photodune)

Juneteenth teaches us something important about freedom: it’s useless unless you know it’s true and you live like it.

As a Christian, you have a spiritual freedom you may not even realize.

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I’m excited to teach at Christ Lutheran Church in Whitefish, Montana on the topic: “Lasting Lessons from the Land of the Bible.” I will center my teaching around key sites in the Holy Land; the amazing events that occurred at each site, and application for life today.

Date: September 23, 2017
Time: 6:00-8:00 p.m.
Event: Lasting Lessons from the Land of the Bible
Topic: "Lasting Lessons from the Land of the Bible"
Sponsor: Christ Lutheran Church
Venue: Christ Lutheran Church Whitefish
406-862-2615
Location: 5150 River Lakes Parkway
Whitefish, MT 59937
United States
Public: Public

How Jesus’ Powerful Personal Hope Can Lift You Up

The geography of the Ark of the Covenant mirrors Jesus' Ascension—and ours.

Do you know what one, primary, personal hope drove Jesus’ life? What He looked forward to the most? It’s important we do know, because the same hope should drive our lives.

How Jesus’ Powerful Personal Hope Can Lift You Up

(Photo courtesy of Unsplash)

As I have read the gospels, one reality has jumped out at me stronger than ever. Jesus’ goal was not merely the cross. Even as great as the resurrection was, Jesus still had another hope beyond that.

It’s good news you can apply by the end of this blog post—and then for the rest of your life.

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Why Your Spiritual Consistency is Worth the Cost

The benefits far outweigh what you pay each day to walk faithfully.

Mondays are not the best days for car trouble. One morning I hopped in my car and inserted the key in the ignition. When I cranked it—I kid you not—the car made the sound: “Ugh.”

So I pulled out the jumper cables. But two days later, the car sang the second verse of the same song: “Ugghhh.”

Why Your Spiritual Consistency is Worth the Cost

(Photo courtesy of Unsplash)

Later that day, my auto mechanic gave a simple diagnosis: I needed a new battery.

Now, I could have said: “Hey, you know, a car starting every other day isn’t so bad. It sure beats walking. I guess I don’t need a battery.” Guess again. I bought a battery—a big one. If my vehicle runs inconsistently, it’s of little value to me. At the same time, keeping the car running reliably comes down to one thing. 

It costs me.

The same is true of our spiritual lives.

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If You’ve Ever Thought of Touring the Holy Land, Now is the Time

It’s a fact: a tour to Israel changes the way you read your Bible. I’ve seen in the lives of hundreds of Christians. I’ve experienced it myself. If you’ve been, you know what I mean. If you have yet to go, now is the time. 

10 Reasons a Tour to Israel Belongs on Your Bucket List

(Photo: Mount Arbel overlooking the Sea of Galilee. Courtesy of the Pictorial Library of Bible Lands)

I’m convinced you should do your best to take a tour to Israel at least once in your life.

Here are 10 reasons you should consider going to the Holy Land now.

(By the way, if you’d like to join Cathy and me for our tour this fall, time is short! The tour is filling up and registration ends next month. Get more info here. There’s also a tour next March.)

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I’m excited to lead an upcoming tour to the Holy Land which will focus exclusively on applying select Old and New Testament sites to your life. This will be an exclusive, one-bus tour, seeing sites that average tours to Israel don’t get to see—around a theme most never get to experience first-hand. Click for more information.

I hope you’ll join Cathy and me for this trip of a lifetime.

Date: March 16, 2018—March 27, 2018
Event: Journey through the Holy Land
Topic: Journey through the Holy Land
Sponsor: Imagine Tours and Travel
863.709.9208
Venue: Israel
Location: Israel
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.
More Info: Click here for more information.

Download a brochure with all the details.

I’m excited to lead an upcoming tour to the Holy Land which will focus exclusively on applying select Old and New Testament sites to your life. This will be an exclusive, one-bus tour, seeing sites that average tours to Israel don’t get to see—around a theme most never get to experience first-hand. Click for more information.

I hope you’ll join Cathy and me for this trip of a lifetime.

Date: October 26, 2017—November 6, 2017
Event: Journey through the Holy Land
Topic: Journey through the Holy Land
Sponsor: Imagine Tours and Travel
863.709.9208
Venue: Israel
Location: Israel
Public: Public
Registration: Click here to register.
More Info: Click here for more information.

Download a brochure with all the details.

Rephidim—How to Win the Battle You Face Today

Our struggles are not new, and neither is the secret to victory.

You wake up to it each morning. It follows you as you go through your day. It’s waiting for you in every room and conversation. Your battle cleverly disguises itself in many forms.

Rephidim—How to Win the Battle You Face Today

(Photo by Photodune)

Your battle appears as a person, or as money, or as a tense situation at the office.

But the reality is that the battle you face each day has another source. The fight that God’s people faced at Rephidim proved that point.

The battle is spiritual—and there’s only one way to win.

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2 Helpful Truths When God’s Plan Seems Delayed

What helps you when God’s plan seems stalled?

Most mornings the national news seems downright depressing. Political corruption. Religious hypocrisy. Sexual disorientation. I confess, sometimes it’s tough to see God working in the world.

2 Helpful Truths When God’s Plan Seems Delayed

(Photo courtesy of Unsplash)

We seldom ask the questions out loud. But we all think it: Where exactly is God working in this fallen world? Why does He seem so silent—and even distant?

We know the answers in our heads. The Bible gives us good ones:

  • God allows evil so that we may choose good. Yep. Got it. God is patient (2 Pet. 3:9).
  • God uses evil for His good purposes. Yes, of course. God is sovereign (Rom. 8:28).

These answers give an explanation for what we see. But what about what we don’t see?

How come there seems so little of God’s work in the world?

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