Ray McDonald's Blog

Thoughts and Reflections

Jesus Throws Us A Curve

1 Peter 3:9a

Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult.

Life ChangeIn the Old Testament – we’re told to repay strike for strike. Trying to remove evil from the society – Deuteronomy reads this way. Deuteronomy 19:16–21 – 16 If a malicious witness takes the stand to accuse someone of a crime, 17 the two people involved in the dispute must stand in the presence of the Lord before the priests and the judges who are in office at the time. 18 The judges must make a thorough investigation, and if the witness proves to be a liar, giving false testimony against a fellow Israelite, 19 then do to the false witness as that witness intended to do to the other party. You must purge the evil from among you. 20 The rest of the people will hear of this and be afraid, and never again will such an evil thing be done among you. 21 Show no pity: life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot. The idea is – the punishment should fit the crime. Equal response to wrongs done to you or others.

In the Old Testament – our relationship with God was very vertical. Yes – we should compare ourselves with God (vertical) – rather than with each other (horizontal) – but – not everything is black and white – or eye for eye. In the New Testament – our relationship is defined by how we interact with others. Yes – there is still a need to walk the walk – but – walking the walk is not about following a set of rules so much as showing the love of Christ to others. Continue reading

April 10, 2019 Posted by | Build, Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, Family, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Leadership, Lenten Thought, Outreach, Personal, Prayer, Theology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Are We Horizontal or Vertical in Our Faith?

2 Timothy 3:1-5

1 But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.

IMG_0301Church people often don’t like to hear that we are sinners – I know I don’t like to be reminded of it – yet here is a scripture that reminds us that in the end times people will be lovers of many things other than God. If we aren’t reminded of our sinfulness and the grace of God that overcomes that sinfulness – we might just fall into the trap of thinking that we are OK just as we are and God’s grace will cover it all. God’s grace does cover it all – for those who repent and seek after Him – but I would never preach that all we need to do is say a prayer and God covers it all. There needs to be a heart change – a heart change that causes a life change. Faith without works is dead – says Jesus’ brother James (James 2:26).

On Sunday morning – at both the 8:15 & 11:00 am service – we will begin our 2nd Annual Pre-Lenten Revival. The revival will continue on Sunday evening at 7 pm and each night through Wednesday night – Ash Wednesday – at 7 pm. This year we will conclude the revival on Sunday – February 22nd. Plan now to attend. Plan now to invite someone to our awesome worship services. It is a great time to invite folks that already attend another church on Sunday mornings but might like to visit your church. Invite someone today and each day this week. Continue reading

February 11, 2015 Posted by | Church, Community, Daily Devotion, Discipleship, Encouragement, Evangelism, Faith Journey, From the Pastor, Holy Spirit, Leadership, Outreach, Personal, Theology | , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments


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