John Ritenbaugh addresses three foundational principles: 1) God's omniscience (knowledge of what is going on everywhere); 2) God's assurance that even though we have trials, they all have a niche in His overall purpose;, and 3) God's continual providence i. . .
In this message on self-deception and illusion, Martin Collins focuses upon the pernicious insidious trait of human nature to deceive itself, living in a perpetual fantasy and self-delusion. God uses a lifetime regimen of testing, designed to distinguish g. . .
God promises certain Christians that He will keep them from the Tribulation—the "hour of trial." Here are the characteristics of those whom God will protect.
Kim Myers, reflecting on the uniqueness of our calling, asks us if we appreciate the miracle of our calling, an event which changed our orientation regarding our belief structure, diet, and moral behavior, totally at odds with the world. God has called eac. . .
In Job 1, Satan accuses God of hedging Job about on every side, saying that if God would let down the hedge, they could see what Job was really made of. This article explains how important God's hedge about us is.
Christ endured many more than three temptations; rather, He was tested continuously, and perhaps the intensity increased as He neared the end of His life.
Hard trials are not punishments from God for unrighteousness but tests of faith in which He is intimately involved to prepare us for the world to come.
Martin Collins discusses the apostle Paul's epistle to the Thessalonians, a group of dispirited, despairing Christians who had been bombarded by false teachings that the Day of the Lord had already come, prompting many to quit their employment, rest on the. . .
Ted Bowling, reflecting on the potter and clay analogy, reminds us that the Master Potter continually molds and shapes His people. Finding different kinds of clay in the riverbed, he weathers it to the point it stinks (like our own sins), and then pounds t. . .
Ryan McClure, cautioning us to regard neither the trials of ancient Israel nor our present trials as an oddity, reminds us that God uses trials to test and humble us, but He never impedes our ability to move forward toward His goal of creating us as a fami. . .
David Maas, examining classical Biblical and modern metaphors of sanctification, focuses on refinement, enhancement, and glorification metaphors, illustrating how we are transformed from temporal to eternal. We have some clues as to how we will appear in a. . .
Despite the many blessings God bestows upon His saints, real Christianity more resembles a running battle against persistent, hostile forces than a leisurely stroll down the path of life. John Ritenbaugh uses the example of ancient Israel in the wilderness. . .
We have been called to a life of avoiding, enduring and overcoming temptation. Here is the process of temptation, sin and their products, and destruction.
We tend to think of the early Church as a 'golden age' of unity and momentum. But early church members experienced problems similar to what we face today.
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting on the analogy or metaphor of wilderness wanderings, focuses on the role of suffering or persecution (pressure) in perfecting the saints. God the Father perfected Jesus Christ (our Elder Brother, High Priest, and Mediator) throu. . .
Trials are a means to produce spiritual growth, unless we resort to super-righteousness, straining to please God by exalting our works.
Our hope is based on having a living Savior. At times we are discouraged and overwhelmed, but God has not left us—though unseen, He is in the trials with us.
The group that one fellowships with is less important than the understanding that there is one true church, bound by a spiritual, not a physical unity.
Ryan McClure, drawing parallels between the Exodus of Israel and our spiritual conversion, points out that God shows transparency of His intentions to test us in order to see what is in our hearts (Deuteronomy 8:1-5). The Lord revealed to Moses His intenti. . .
God wants to protect His investment in us, calling those whom He knows will exercise the zeal, and willingness to sacrifice, to complete the project.
John Ritenbaugh reiterates that the heroes of faith in Hebrews 11 did not have a blind naïve faith, but one built incrementally by careful examination of the evidence- adding things up or calculating- from cumulative life experiences. From this acquired fa. . .
John Ritenbaugh, cuing in on Psalm 73:1-9, describing the despair of someone seeing the wicked prosper while the righteous suffer, affirms that it is a delusion that people in the world are leading comfortable lives. Christian living, while not comfortable. . .
John Ritenbaugh reveals that the valley-of-shadow imagery symbolizes the fears, frustrations, trials, and tests needed to produce character, quality fruit, and an intimate trust in the shepherd. His rod, an extension of his will and strength, serves not on. . .
John Ritenbaugh, continuing his exposition of Ecclesiastes as he focuses on a paradox which initially provides a measure of grief and anguish to believers, the paradox which shows an unrighteous man flourishing and a righteous man suffering, points us to t. . .
John Ritenbaugh warns that the pride of Jacob (or his offspring) coupled with the incredible ability to make tremendous technological advances, blinds Israel to its devastating moral deficit. Amos begins with a description or cataloging of the sins of Isra. . .
The most formidable foe in our spiritual battle is the flesh. We must mortify, slay, and crucify the flesh, enduring suffering as Jesus Christ exemplified.
John Ritenbaugh, defining providence as the protective care of God, suggests that the providence of God also touches on the pains and sufferings of persecution. To the elect whom God foreknew, all things- pleasant or unpleasant- happen for ultimate good (R. . .
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