Posts in GOD
Gideon: Peace in turmoil

I glanced above the crumbling wall. No Midianite soldiers in sight. They’d stolen our crops for years, but they weren’t getting this grain.

I shifted my heavy bag back onto my shoulder and ran towards the towering oak. I knew just the place to hide it: the winepress.

I started to separate the grains from the chaff in the pit, before looking up for enemy soldiers. I jumped. Sitting under the tree was a strange man.

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Why should Christians do good?

It’s that age-old question: if we’re saved by grace alone through our faith in Jesus, why bother with doing good? Paul anticipated this question:

‘What shall we say, then? Shall we go on sinning so that grace may increase?’ Romans 6:1

Well, no. We know that being a Christian means changes to our life. But why?

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When you feel like you're not growing

I long for spiritual maturity. I long for a better understanding of the Bible, a deeper trust in our Father’s promises, and a more Jesus-reflecting love (1 Corinthians 13:1-3).

The Bible talks about it all the time: ‘grow up in your spiritual salvation’ (1 Peter 2:2). ‘Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord (2 Peter 3:18).

Grow, grow, grow.

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Good news for fearful, busy and deeply insecure high-achievers (like me)

I was sixteen when I believed that Jesus came to save me from sin (1 Timothy 1:15) – my wilful rejection of a loving, holy and real creator.

I was told that those who’d receive him would receive life to the full (John 10:10) – both in this world and in the one to come. I received God’s gift of eternal life with a beaming smile. But life to the full here?

Well, I already had that covered.

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It’s not how anyone wants to be described.

It’s someone who bets their savings on a football game – or who stores up cash without a thought for God or the life to come (Luke 12:18).

‘God said to him, “You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you.”’ Luke 12:20

We don’t want to hear that verdict as we meet our Maker. So how do we avoid it?

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Has God really forgiven me?

Are you sure God forgave you of that sin? It’s a pretty bad one. It’s not the first time you’ve done it either. Maybe you should confess it again? Just a few more times?

This is a typical conversation I have in my head – doubting God’s forgiveness and feeling guilty.

But some sins just seem too ugly for God to forgive straight away: adultery, shoplifting…surely they need extra big repentance?

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Christian, it matters how you treat God

Israel had lost God (1 Samuel 4:22). The Philistines had captured the ‘ark of the covenant’ – the symbol of God’s presence and glory.

But the Philistines’ mistreatment of the ark wrought havoc. God smashed their idols (1 Samuel 5:4) and brought the bubonic plague on its capturers (1 Samuel 5:6).

So the people of Ashdod passed the ark to the people of Gath. They passed it to the people of Ekron who didn’t want it either.

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