Psalm 23 – A Barnyard View This sermon was delivered July 8th 2018 at Vineyard Church Peoria. The podcast can be heard at this link http://www.thevineyardchurchpeoria.org/2018/07/08/a-barnyard-view-of-the-23rd-psalm/ There are some passages of the Bible that are dangerous to talk about. Not because they’re particularly controversial or challenging. No, these passages are dangerous because they are well-known and cemented in our hearts. Passages such as John 3:16, The Beatitudes, Romans 8, and today’s Psalm – Psalm 23. I’m drawn to this beloved Psalm like a moth to the flame. I’m connected to this Psalm in ways that perhaps only a few in this room can share. You see, I have sheep cred. Many of you have city cred or street cred. You know how to navigate the everyday challenges of
IKEA is famous for providing instructions without words. Follow the picture diagrams and that pile of wooden pieces and hardware will become a nightstand, a bed, a coffee table, or a chest of drawers. The instructions lay out an order of construction. There are perhaps several ways to successfully complete the build. Who says the frame needs to be built before the drawers? But IKEA, for reasons that are often not clear, chose to prioritize the order of the build in a certain way. Our next Jesus says command speaks to the order in which we build our lives. Our key verse is Matthew 6:33 where Jesus says, “But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” (Matthew 6:33, NASB95) To get the full impact we must pull in the context. The beginning
Consider this a special Lambchow in response to current events. This may become a feature when situations occur that give us pause. Because these may be controversial the intent is to avoid advocating for a side, engage in endless fact-checking, or pointing fingers of blame and shame. Event: The fallout from the zero-tolerance policy at the southern border of the United States. Escalation: Issues with people illegally entering the United States have been a continuing problem and a political wedge for many decades. Laws are on the books. They were passed by Congress and signed by the then current President to deal with the issue. Like many laws, enforcement efforts at the border laws have varied over the decades. Other laws and court findings also impact the applicable current procedu...
Betty and I enjoy hiking through the woods. We often plan our vacations around those hikes. Since we seek out those trails rated as moderate to rugged it not unusual for us to cross a bridgeless stream using stepping stones. Sometimes those stones are placed and maintained by the Park Service. Sometimes they’re the natural stones and logs that make up the stream bed. Care is taken as we test the surety of each stone, a hiking stick at the ready to provide additional support. Our next steps in the Walk Through 2nd Peter is like crossing a broad stream on stepping stones. Please read 2 Peter 2:4-11. For the sake of space, I won’t reprint it here. In order to continue Peter’s flow, we must reach back for a moment to verse 3. “Their judgment from long ago is not idle, and their destruct
Once a year we ask the readers of Lambchow for some feedback. Our goal is to better understand the needs and makeup of our audience. All entries are anonymous. We are not asking for your name or collecting your email address. In a few weeks, I’ll compile and publish the results. The survey itself is twenty questions, all but two are multiple choice of some flavor. Thank you in advance for your time. Click here to get started: https://goo.gl/forms/q86Lz0L2peturFlf1
We don’t use the word zeal or zealous much anymore. Zeal is instead replaced with passion, enthusiasm, or determination. The word may be relegated to the dustbin but the drive, emotions, and persistence it describes are alive and well. Name the cause and there will be a zealot somewhere in the picture. But here we must be clear, zeal in itself is not a marker of rightness. Just like someone can be sincerely wrong, someone can be zealously misguided. That’s where faith comes in. Often overlooked when we read Paul’s Letter to the Romans is his exploration of Jewishness and Christ. For instance, in the latter part of chapter nine and the beginning of ten Paul describes how the zeal of the Jews caused them to miss Christ. “What shall we say then? That Gentiles, who did not pursue righ
Sir Isaac Newton was a man of science. His list of discoveries is long and include the fundamental laws of motion, thermodynamics, and gravity. Yet Newton was also a man of faith and often wrote about the intersection between his discoveries and God. In an appendix to Principia Newton wrote of God, “He is not Eternity or Infinity, but Eternal and Infinite; he is not Duration or Space, but he endures and is present. He endures for ever and is every where present, and by existing always and every where he constitutes Duration and Space.” Using more modern language – God is both eternal in the sense of time and infinite in the sense of place. Newton understood this from his study of math, calculus, the ways of matter, and by faith. By Faith… The writer of Hebrews provides a succinct definit
Visit any Kindergarten classroom, and you’re sure to see the ABC’s on the wall. No matter the language the Alphabet or its equivalent is the building blocks of writing and communication. That basic understanding of the ABC’s leads to words and the sharing of thoughts, hopes, dreams, feelings, and fears. In the English language, we have twenty-six letters from A to Z. Perhaps you remember learning your ABC’s and the little song that is often used. Maybe you’ve laughed as a youngster struggled with the order and suddenly jumped from f to j. Is there little doubt that the ABC’s are basic and foundational? For the next 13 weeks, we’re going to go through the ABC’s of Faith. Twenty Six articles exploring aspects of faith moving from A to Z. In many ways faith is like the Alphabet, it is bas