The Thyatira epistle carries a central theme for all seven churches, namely the tendency to syncretize or mix worldly ideas with the truth of God.
Contrary to Protestant understanding, our works emphatically do count - showing or demonstrating (not just telling) that we will be obedient.
While we are all different, we are all vulnerable to something, such as fear of deprivation, harm or shame. In response, we all create protective defense mechanisms.
Sin, like junk food appeals to our sensual inner appetites, and may seem delightful in its initial stages, but it leads inevitably to death. We have an awesome responsibility, with the help of God's Holy Spirit, to change our inner nature, circumcising our. . .
John Ritenbaugh, using an analogy of the signers of the Declaration of Independence, asserts that we are on the cutting edge of a tumultuous period, the greatest revolution that will ever take place on earth, when peace and prosperity will come about witho. . .
Our natural carnal human nature (our heart, Jeremiah 17:9) is committed to values that are destroying us spiritually. These are values derived from family, religious, and cultural traditions—old wine that cannot go into new wineskins. Conversion invo. . .
In this conclusion to the two-part vanity series, John Ritenbaugh bridges the Old and New Testament understanding on this vast, sprawling subject. Solomon's statement that all of life is vanity (transitory, useless, and illusory) is only true if one is not. . .
John Ritenbaugh, reflecting on Jesus Christ's prayer for unity in John 17, insists that unity with our brethren is impossible without unity with God first. Adam and Eve severed this unity by yielding to Satan's influence, stimulating their minds with a nov. . .
In Amos' prophecy, faithlessness and sexual immorality loom large, like a a prostitute chasing after lovers. Faithlessness extends into not keeping one's word.
In this sermon focusing on meekness and forgiveness, John Ritenbaugh indicates that when we are sinned against, our ego gets extremely strong and our emotions get muddled, making it difficult to give forgiveness. Because God is the Creator of everything, o. . .
What we believe automatically determines what we do; it is impossible to separate faith and works. If Jesus is not our source of belief, our works will suffer.
The Ephesus church effectively battled various heresies, for which Christ commends it. However, the members lost sight of the reason, having left their first love.
We need to avoid the trap of self-justification, allowing our hasty words to lure us into sin. We must be quick to listen, and slow to speak.
Is it possible Cain saw himself as the great protagonist, the conqueror of Satan—even the Savior of the world? Did Cain literally have a "Messiah complex"?
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