Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

No Jesus – No Peace – Know Jesus – Know Peace

Matthew 7:21

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

RayMcDYesterday – we preached a sermon about death and dying. As I was preparing for this message – it became clear to me that I couldn’t cover all of the questions surrounding death and dying in one message. In the message and in a Facebook post – I asked folks to share with me their questions about death and dying. I have received a number already and I’m planning the series soon.

A number of people said I answered some of their questions yesterday in the sermon (listen to it here when it posts – the title will be Do Not Be Ignorant). The base Scripture was 1 Thessalonians 4:13-17. You can read the sermon notes here – but listening will help a lot because much of the message is not on the sermon notes. The notes will allow you to have all of the Scriptures I used in the message. Continue reading

August 13, 2018 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Sermons, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Justified Through Faith

Romans 5:1

Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,

profileI remember collecting pop bottles as a child.  We would roam the community and pick up the empties people threw out their windows.  In our wagon we would collect as a many as we could carry or as many as we could find.  We would take them to the store or gas station where they sold pop.  We would get 2 cents for every bottle we collected.  The store owner/worker would count up the bottles – make sure they were bottles he serviced and make an accounting of how much he owed us.  If we had bottles he couldn’t return to his distributor – he would not count them and we had to take them back.  In turn we would take the money we got for the pop bottles and buy candy and pop from him.

I remember counting in my head as we approached the store – just how much my efforts had earned me that day and how much candy I could buy.  I use to buy baseball cards with my money – if I remember correctly I could get five cards and a large piece of bazooka bubble gum for a nickel.  It was my first job – if you want to call it that – a time when my work (picking up the bottles) resulted in a payback. Continue reading

September 5, 2013 Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Do you Want Temporal Peace or Eternal Peace?

Galatians 5:22-26

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.

We continue through this week – examining the Fruits of the Spirit as found in Galatians 5.  Today we will deal with the third fruit listed – peace.  Peace is something that most of us search for – even yearn for – in our lives.

What is it that brings you peace?  I could talk about temporal peace – much like happiness – and say that it is circumstantially driven.  Some peace comes over us when the circumstances line up properly. A measure of peace comes over us when we have completed our finals – a large project – our education – after a big family gathering. Eternal or spiritual peace comes from our relationship with God.

Job 22:21 – “Submit to God and be at peace with him; in this way prosperity will come to you.”

This passage suggests that peace comes from submitting to God.  It is derived from our walk with our Lord.  Jesus even talks about this peace with His disciples – as recorded by the Apostle John.

John 14:27 – Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

The world only knows how to offer temporal peace – circumstantially driven peace.  God can give deep down peace – everlasting peace – eternal peace – peace derived from our walk with God.  Even in the face of death we can fear no evil – now that is peace.

Psalm 23:4 – Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.

Our relationship with God brings peace.  With that said – if we desire true peace – we need to enhance – build – our relationship with God.  Walking in the Lord – in the ways and teachings of God – brings us peace.  And all of this is through Christ – who bore our sins on the cross of Calvary.  Our debt is paid – now that brings us peace – real peace.

Romans 5:1 – Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ,

Just something to think about today as you go on your way.


December 22, 2010 Posted by | Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Faith Journey, From the Pastor | , , , , , , , | 2 Comments


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