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Several years ago I had a preacher friend who provided interesting insights into the pulpit life.  During the years of our acquaintance, in spite of normal frustrations with his flock, he could usually count on at least a few encouraging words after each sermon.  Except for the time he preached about the temptations of Christ.  […]

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Bible Challenge, Week 14: The People - Sacrifice

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Leviticus is often called the “graveyard of daily Bible reading plans,” because when you turn the page after Exodus all your good intentions to stay awake fall off a cliff.  Detailed instructions for festivals and holy days, scrubbing your leprous walls, burying your polluted waste, purifying your bodily discharges . . .   What could have […]

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A New Creation?

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About twenty years ago, a close friend learned that her youngest son had Duchenne MD, the worst form of Muscular Dystrophy.  It meant gradual weakening, teen years in a wheelchair, and an early death, perhaps by his mid-twenties.  She told me it changed everything: how she thought, how she planned her day, how she cleaned, […]

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Bible Challenge, Week 13: The People - Tabernacle

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After last week’s fiasco, most of us would have ditched our “chosen people.”  The Lord even indicated that that was his inclination, but Moses (speaking in human terms, from a human perspective), “changed his mind.”  Or, as the first paragraph of the download puts it, After the golden calf incident, God declared that He would let […]

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Why Sex?

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Several years ago, after a flurry of news about some outrage I can’t even remember, my best friend asked in frustration, “Why do we even have to have sex?” One obvious reason: without a drive that powerful and all-consuming, the human species would have died out a long time ago.  Babies are fun and rewarding […]

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Bible Challenge, Week 12: The People - Failure!

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“All the LORD commands us, we will do.”  I’ve heard people say it’s easy to obey God.  Maybe they don’t realize how easy it is to think they’re obeying God, while they’re really obeying their own insights and personal revelations. True obedience begins with true worship.  “You shall have no other gods before me” is […]

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Bible Challenge, Week 11: The People - Sinai

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Two weeks ago we read how Moses first met Yahweh on Mt. Horeb.  This week, Moses has a famous meeting with God on Mt. Sinai.  Did you know it was the same mountain?  Moses has become the mediator of a covenant, and now the people are called to a covenant ceremony similar to Abraham’s in […]

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Bible Challenge Week 10: The People - Deliverance

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The stage is set for a great contest between the God of Israel and the many gods of Egypt.  Almost all cultures at that time worshipped many gods, and each deity was limited to control of a particular land, city, or natural phenomenon–not one of them was in control of everything.  But the God of […]

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Air-Tasting

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We hear the best things in life are free–how many of us actually believe it?  But it’s true that the most vital things in life are free, such as blood, oxygen, and grace.  The five senses are free, too: how often do you pause to appreciate them?  Especially at the turn of the seasons, when […]

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