In Deuteronomy 26, the nation of Israel received instructions about what they should do after they entered the Promised Land. Once they arrived at the land which God gave each tribe and family, they were to plant their crops. When the harvest came, they were to go to the place where the Lord would establish his name and give an offering of the firstfruits of their harvest. They would accompany their offering with these words: “Now behold, I have brought the first of the produce of the ground which You, O Lord, have given me” (Deuteronomy 26:10).
In 2012, the Lord gave me new soil from which I was to bring him a harvest. The church was called Cotton Ridge. It began in 2010 when a group of hurting believers joined together to seek God’s healing and see what the Lord would do. Through a unique set of circumstances, this small congregation in a small west Texas town seemed destined to invest its resources not in property, buildings, and other temporary things, but in people. For over six years it supported orphans, ministered to widows, rebuilt homes for the needy, fed the hungry, prayed for the sick, witnessed to the lost, and baptized those who wished to follow Jesus. The church was able to accomplish all of this without ever owning a building, a kitchen, or even a baptistery because the people believed a very fundamental truth: people are the church. (more…)
The most difficult thing you will ever deal with is people.
Love. Revenge. Empathy. Bitterness. These are just a few of the complex spiritual dynamics that impact our lives every day.
In this third message from the series “Proverbs: Gear for Life,” Dr. David Rhoades brings to light some life principles the Book of Proverbs teaches about relationships.
Two weeks after U.S. Soccer announced that their men’s and women’s teams will be wearing rainbow-colored jerseys in support of gay pride month in June, one player has removed herself from the team.
Jaelene Hinkle has seemingly taken a very unpopular stand on a hot-button issue. I say seemingly because she has simply stated “personal reasons” for her decision.
From what outsiders such as myself can determine, Ms. Hinkle is a Christian woman with deep convictions. Her self-removal from the team gives every appearance that she followed her principles when presented with the following scenario: The team made a decision that would require her to violate her convictions. In response, she quietly and voluntarily removed herself from the team.
Today I had the distinct pleasure to meet and listen to Rabbi Daniel Lapin. He was in Dallas to honor the 50th anniversary of the Six-Day War.
In that war, Israel was very much outmanned and outgunned. The old city of Jerusalem had been captured by Jordan during Israel’s war of independence in 1948. As a result, synagogues were destroyed and Jews were forbidden from visiting their holy sites.
Almost twenty years later, the forces of Egypt, Jordan, and Syria were ready to strike in an effort to wipe Israel off the map. But Israel made a surprise pre-emptive strike, and the Lord provided miracle after miracle to keep the young nation in tact.
[shareable cite=”Psalm 122:6″]Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: May they prosper who love you.[/shareable]Importantly, Jerusalem was freed and unified. Israel quickly allowed people of any faith—Jew, Christian, and Muslim—to practice their religion freely in the city.
Today, Israel is a land with no oil, not enough water, and many enemies around the world. Yet it stands as a model of liberty and prosperity to its neighbors.
To learn more about Rabbi Daniel Lapin, check out his website at rabbidaniellapin.com.
Submission. Humility. Trust.
These three attitudes are essential to serving others as God intends. In this twenty-third message from the series “Hope for Exiles: The Teachings of First Peter,” Dr. David Rhoades explores the riches of these qualities for the benefit of God’s people.
True leadership is servant leadership.
God calls certain men from His flock to serve as undershepherds to His flock. They are to lead by example.
In this twenty-second message from the series “Hope for Exiles: The Teachings of First Peter,” Dr. David Rhoades shows how faithful pastors help all Christians understand the importance of leading people in their lives.
It’s hard not to love someone when you pray together. And it’s hard not to love someone when you forgive one another.
In the Bible, Peter knew the depth of true love and forgiveness because he had received both from Jesus. In 1 Peter 4:7-11, Peter passes his knowledge on to us.
Join Dr. David Rhoades in his twentieth message from the series “Hope for Exiles: The Teachings of First Peter” as examines this passage.
Jesus was “put to death in the flesh, but made alive in the spirit?” Jesus made proclamation to the spirits now in prison who were present in Noah’s day? We are “saved by baptism?” Certainly 1 Peter 3:18-22 might be one of the most misunderstood and misinterpreted passages in all of Scripture.
However, when you understand these statements in the context of one another and in the context of Peter’s overall message, it becomes more clear. In this eighteenth sermon from the series “Hope for Exiles: The Teachings of First Peter,” Dr. David Rhoades unpacks the mysteries of this passage so that we can appreciate the beautiful, eternal gospel.
Most American Christians, including myself, have no experience whatsoever in what it means to be persecuted. The religious liberty we enjoy—and take for granted—shields us from the harsh reality experienced by many Christians since the day Peter and John were arrested in Acts 4.
While our level of suffering may not even rise to a level that we could rightly call it “persecution,” we nevertheless must deal with people who may mistreat us due to our faith in Christ. One of the distinguishing marks of the Christian faith is how it instructs us to react in these situations.
In this sixteenth message from the series, “Hope for Exiles: The Teachings of First Peter,” Dr. David Rhoades shows how we can fulfill the biblical exhortation to bless bad people.
Submission is difficult because we resist the idea. Love is even more so because of the same reason.
Wives are called to the difficult task of submitting to their husbands. Husbands are called to the difficult task of loving their wives.
In this fifteenth message from the series “Hope for Exiles: The Teachings of First Peter,” Dr. David Rhoades instructs husbands in their highest and most noble task.