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Through Faith… What Does The Bible Say?

Sunday---What-Does-The-Bible-Say-GraceEphesians 2:8-9

For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.” 

These were two of the first verses I memorized as a young Christian.  I was eager to share my faith and the truth that we cannot save ourselves through good works was a critical part of the message.  Most of us are familiar with these verses.  And they get thrown around a lot in theological discussions. 

“It’s not by works!  Salvation isn’t by works and sanctification isn’t by works either!  Its’ all grace-it’s not by your works!”

And that’s true, as far as it goes.  But the discussion is often left very incomplete because the very next verse in Ephesians 2 is left out of the passage.  Verse 10 says, “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”

So we are emphatically not saved BY good works.  But while we’re pontificating on that great truth, let’s not forget another one:  though we’re not saved BY good works, we are most definitely saved FOR good works.

Theologians will argue forever over the part good works play or don’t play in our spiritual growth.  But the undeniable fact is that we are saved for the purpose of doing good works in Christ’s name. 

Take whatever theological stand seems right to you, but at the same time—get to work.

 

 

 

He Was No Side Show ~ Saturday Stories

Saturday-Stories-BullSitting Bull was a famous fighting Indian chief, a great leader of the Sioux nation.

But after many years of warring against the American government, Sitting Bull was finally compelled to yield to superior numbers and surrender. A few years after his people gave up the warpath, he was befriended by Buffalo Bill Cody. Cody had been an army scout and had done his share of fighting against the Indians. But he held no malice toward the red man, and wanted to see him treated with fairness by the government and his rights respected.

A born showman, Cody put together Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, a sort of circus that included mock battles between real Indians and Bluecoat soldiers, stage coach robberies, buffalo hunts and gunfights. Wish I could have been there.

Buffalo Bill prevailed upon the old chief Sitting Bull to be a part of this show, rightly figuring that the famous chief would be a huge attraction for the crowd of Eastern show-goers who delighted in seeing a real live piece of the Wild West. Bill and Bull often traveled together from city to city between shows.

Whenever the train pulled into another town to take on passengers, fuel or water, Cody and the chief would step out onto the platform, address the crowd and shake hands in an attempt to generate interest in their show. Sitting Bull was indeed a huge attraction. People nearly trampled each other to crowd close for a look at the famous fighter. They shouted out offers of large amounts of money for a lock of his hair.

The Chief had experienced enough threats to his scalp to have grown very attached to it, so he politely declined such offers. However, he graciously offered a button off his coat for $5.00. This was a considerable amount of money in those days, but there was no shortage of takers. The Chief sold every button at one stop. As the train pulled away, people who had been disappointed in not having obtained one of the prized souvenirs would gang around the successful buyers and offer them far more than the $5 they had spent for a button. But some miles down the line, another town and another crowd was waiting. These people would want souvenirs too, and they wouldn’t be disappointed.

Because old Chief Sitting Bull was still just as cagey as he had ever been on the warpath.

As the train pulled out of town, he reached into his pocket for several more buttons and began to patiently sew them on his coat for the next crowd.

 

 

Helping Your Children Hide God’s Word In Their Hearts~Part 3

Reading the BibleCreate projects to help your kids apply what they’re learning. Instead of just teaching them information, walk them through life situations and show them how to put into practice what they are learning. Here a few suggestions of things we did with our kids that really worked. Read More…

What Does The Bible Say? with Rick Boyer

What-Does-the-Bible-Say-Rick-BoyerPsalm 92:1, 2:  “It is good to give thanks to the LORD and to sing praises to Your name, O Most High; To declare Your loving kindness in the morning and Your faithfulness by night”

An article in the Wall Street Journal health section, published November 23, 2010 had some interesting things to say about thankfulness.  Of course the secular writer didn’t give proper glory to God, but she did quote research showing that a thankful attitude can Read More…

Eating Through A Keyhole – SATURDAY STORIES

Saturday-Stories-Abraham-ClarkIt’s a little known fact that the War of Independence was one of the most atrocity-free wars in history.  That is, on the part of the Americans.

The British on the other hand, commonly looted or burned homes, assaulted defenseless women, stole or killed livestock belonging to civilians and treated clergymen with contempt because of their role in fomenting the revolution.  

One preacher in Trenton, New Jersey was stabbed with a bayonet.  A dead American soldier was hacked to pieces by British cavalrymen.  But one of the greatest atrocities committed by the British and their Hessian allies was their treatment of American prisoners. Read More…

Helping Your Children Hide God’s Word In Their Hearts~Part 2

 

Help Your Kids Learn The WordHere is another practical way to help teach God’s word to your children:

3. CD’s – This is something we just kind of stumbled upon, but one of the MOST EFFECTIVE ways of teaching kids not only to memorize, but how to meditate as well. When our oldest were very small, Rick worked during the day and was gone till almost bedtime for the kids. Read More…