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Posts by Jim Gordon

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Meaning At The Movies

A couple years ago we had a Sunday morning class with the above title. I would like to revisit the subject of that class in this article for two reasons. ...

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Worship Is A Verb

Robert Webber, former professor of theology at Wheaton College, coined the phrase that is the title of this article. His point can be stated in his own words, “Worship is not something done to us or for us, but by us.” ...

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Pathways To Holiness

They (Romans 5-8) are without doubt among the greatest and most glorious chapters of the whole New Testament. ...

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The English Reformation & You

Have you ever tried to understand the Reformation in England? I have thought about it and believe it’s a lot like the following experience: ...

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Zwingli: The Forgotten Reformer

I call Huldrych Zwingli (1484-1531) the forgotten Reformer because we hear little about him. Those who know of him do so most likely because of his disagreement with Luther’s view of the Lord’s Supper at Marburg in 1529....

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The Historical Nature Of The Gospel

One of my favorite passages of Scripture is Romans 1:1-17. These verses form the introduction to the letter. They are packed with a wealth of material. When you understand these verses you will have a better grasp of the entire letter. ...

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Church History Matters

Okay, I’m going to admit it right at the start. I am biased. In fact, I am very biased when it comes to church history. I love it. I derive great pleasure from reading church history....

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The Coming Storm

There are storm clouds on the horizon. In fact, the leading edge of the storm is already breaking on the Church. The storm I’m referring to is swirling around Adam. You know Adam. The first human being spoken of in Genesis 1-3....

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Delighting In The Word

What do you think of the Bible? Is it really necessary to read, study, and meditate on it on a regular basis? Most of you reading this article would probably answer the second question with a resounding, “Yes, it is very necessary that the Bible be a regular part of our lives.” ...

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Bible Delight

Psalm 119:97 jumps off the page with these words, “Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long.” Is the writer kidding? How can you love the law? How can you delight in rules and regulations? ...

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Come Out Of Her, My People

Pastor Sunday asked all of us a very pointed question in his sermon this past Lord’s Day: Do you embody the attitude of Babel? It’s an important question, for it’s easy for the spirit of pride and rebellion that is found in us naturally to be strengthened by the humanistic culture in which we live....

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Seeing With New Eyes

William R. Handley, associate professor of English at USC, tells us, “No American writer in the first half of the twentieth century sold as many books as did Zane Grey, whose work had a major influence on the development of the Western. Among the fifty-six Westerns Zane Grey wrote, one of his earliest, Riders of the Purple Sage, is still the most popular;...

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Saving Our Collective Memory

History is important. For when we lose our past we lose a piece of ourselves. It’s like losing our memory. This matter is so important that God speaks of it in his Word. Notice what King David said in Psalm 145:3-5 and 10-12...

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Measuring Success

How do you spell success? How do you go about determining if something or someone is successful? A common answer in our day would be, “Look at the numbers. They will reveal the true story. The numbers will make success or failure very clear.”...

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GOD’S GREAT GRACE

When you begin meditating on the book of Ezekiel you find that God’s great grace is the true theme of this amazing book....

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The Great Battle Of Our Time

Reba and I brought in the New Year by watching the extended version of "The Return of the King". We watched the first half on New Year’s Eve and the second half on New Year’s Day. Since then a question has been haunting me. ...

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Come, Let Us Sing

Christmas is one of my favorite times of the year. One of the main reasons I enjoy it so much is the music. At times, it seems like the whole world is singing about it—even when they try to keep it from happening by calling it a holiday instead of Christmas. It still seeps out everywhere because you can’t suppress such a joyous message. It all started at the birth o...

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A Hammer And A Fire

George Whitefield was one of the primary instruments God used in the First Great Awakening. This revival and renewal of religion swept portions of Europe as well as parts of the American colonies between the 1730s and the 1770s. He often preached outside in the fields and wherever a crowd would gather. Many church officials were greatly displeased that a preacher would do ...

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A Life-Long Undertaking

Let me begin with a question: How many years would you devote to working on a project or task? One year? Five years? Would you consider ten years? James Strong spent thirty-five years putting his concordance together. You read correctly: thirty-five years....

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How God Moves

Have you ever gotten a thought stuck in your head that you can’t seem to drive out or dismiss? Whenever there’s a quiet moment it pops into your head. You lay down to sleep and sleep won’t come because you’re turning this matter over in your mind. This has been my experience over the last several months. The thought I have been grappling with...

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Looking Back To Look Ahead

This past Sunday we heard how we are to be disciples of Christ who are engaged in making disciples for Christ. As I considered the implications of such a statement I began to reflect on my life. My thoughts were drawn to those who discipled me....

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Is That Really Necessary?

Have you ever heard anybody ask, “Is adult Christian Education really necessary?” It is not uncommon in our day for Christians to believe that Christian Education for adults is really a waste of time....

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Is NCBC A Missional Church?

If someone asked you this question how would you respond? ...

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The Lord God Almighty Reigns

I recently came across an intriguing statement about our task as Christians when it comes to speaking Biblical truth to our culture. John Swinton put it like this, “The Christian task is not to try to make the Bible relevant to society - quite the opposite. Christians are called to help society to recognize that it actually already lives within the strange world desc...

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If Honor, Then Honor

“All we have of freedom, all we use or know - this our fathers bought for us long and long ago.” These words by Rudyard Kipling remind us of the importance of Memorial Day. In the rush of life it’s easy to forget this truth. We need to remember that our freedom comes with a price....

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Worldview And You

What is your worldview? Did you know you have a worldview? Does it really matter one way or another? As you consider these questions, let me clarify what I mean by the term “worldview.” Your worldview is the basic beliefs and presuppositions you use to explain life in this world. ...

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Forgetting To Live By What We Learn

Have you ever heard someone say something that immediately grabs your attention? You grab a pencil and some paper to write it down before you forget it. Then you read and reread it. Before long you can’t get it out your mind. You’re thinking about it and its implications all the time....

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Jenny Geddes Of Scotland

Have you ever heard of Jenny Geddes? Her story is worth remembering. If fact, it is one of my favorites from church history....

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Why Do We Have Sunday School (Adult Ed)?

It is not uncommon to read someone who concludes, “If Christianity doesn’t change, it is going to die.” One thing often pointed to as an example of what needs to change is Sunday School for Adults (a.k.a. Adult Ed). If it has outlived its days why do we as a church still have it? ...

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Meet Me In The Valley Of Vision

Several years ago I picked up a copy of The Valley of Vision. As I thumbed through it I thought, “This just isn’t me. I don’t pray like this. I don’t use words like this.” So I put it down and went on my way. I continued to hear comments about how it was helping people in their prayer life. I would say to myself, “I’m glad i...

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Remembering The Reformation

This past Sunday, October 27th, was Reformation Sunday. The intent of marking this day on the Church calendar is to commemorate and celebrate one of the most significant events in Church history: The Reformation of the 16th Century. Taking time to reflect on God’s mighty acts in history is biblical. You find the call to reflect on the great works of God throughou...

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Jeremy Lanphier and the Prayer Revival

The following is an encouraging article that appeared on the daily post of Today in Christian History on September 23, 2013....

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Looking For Security

Life seems so insecure and uncertain. At times it even appears to be downright dangerous. You can understand why people have panic attacks....

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Speaking For The Lowly

“Hattie, if I could use a pen as you do, I would write something to make this nation feel what a wicked thing slavery is.” According to family legend, upon reading these words from her sister-in-law, Harriet Beecher Stowe rose up from her chair, crumpled the letter in her hand and vowed, “I will write something, I will if I live.”...

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Summer Is For Reading

Summer is often the time of year when many people devote themselves to reading. In light of that, I am going to make three recommendations for your Summer reading. I am going to promote books from three categories: Fun, Old, and New....

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The Legacy Of God's Triumphant Grace

There’s something you need to know right at the start: I love history! My love affair with history began in Wheaton Graduate School when I took a course in Historical Theology taught by Dr. Robert Webber. I have been feeding my appetite for history ever since....

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Keeping Our Perspective

Perspective is important. This is true because your outlook or viewpoint often determines the outcome of the matter. It does so by shaping and establishing your focus and how you use your resources. Consider how important perspective was to Lewis and Clark. Would viewing the Rocky Mountains from a 747 have made any difference in their journey? Think of all those who once b...

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How Would You Explain Life?

Toward the end of his life, a famous person is interviewed. The first question is asked: “You’ve lived a full life. What would you like to tell everyone watching and listening tonight?” The audience leans forward, waiting for a profound response, some helpful words that could make their lives as successful as this person’s....

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The Spirit and the Gospel

How often do you think about the ministry of the Spirit in the advancement of the gospel? I believe that all too often His ministry is forgotten. I don’t believe it’s by design, but it tends to happen over time by the nature of His unseen ministry -- unseen at least with our natural eyesight....

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Theology in Row 6

Every Sunday we sit under the preaching of God’s Word. On a regular basis we hear the truths of Christianity explained. How do we get from great truths that fill our minds to doctrines that affect our daily lives? How do we connect the dots so the wheels don’t come off during the week and we fail to walk in light of what we have heard and received as the Word...

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Soul Therapy

Ben and Jerry’s Chocolate Therapy is one of my favorite flavors of ice cream. It is a delicious treat for the taste buds. I can almost taste it as a write this article. It also seems therapeutic as it soothes and relaxes you after a busy day. I guess that’s why they call it Chocolate Therapy. As I pondered the joys and benefits of Chocolate Therapy I began...

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Isaac Watts

Isaac Watts The Christian Almanac tells us that Isaac Watts, the English pastor and hymn writer of "Joy to the World," was born in Southampton, England, on July 17, 1674. He wrote over 750 hymns, including the versification of all the psalms....

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A Summer To Remember

One of my favorite quotes about books is from Stephen King, "The odor of an old book is the odor of history, and for me, the look of a new one is still the look of the future." I agree with him wholeheartedly. So I am encouraging you to read something old and something new this summer. You will find it edifying, encouraging, and relaxing....

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Our Eyes are on You

Were you in the congregation when Pastor Sunday had us repeat out loud 2 Chronicles 20:12? It's the prayer of Jehoshaphat when the men of Ammon and Moab and Mount Seir came against Judah. He cried out to God saying, "We are powerless against this great horde that is coming against us. We do not know what to do, but our eyes are on you." David had us repeat these words s...

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Worthy Of Worship

The Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are worthy of worship is one of the main points made in Revelation 5 & 6. Worship is the central or defining act of the church. It's who we are. It's why we exist. God created us to worship him. The living creatures and the elders confess that God is worthy of worship because he's the Creator (4:11)....

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Christ, the Heavenly Champion

In 1961 J.B. Phillips wrote a powerful little book: "Your God Is Too Small". He asked one question in his study: What is your view of God? Phillip's believed most believers and skeptics alike made the same mistake. We put God in a box. We made Him fit our view. Our God ended up being much smaller than the God revealed in Scripture....

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Heroes

My heroes have always been cowboys. Like the song says, "I grew up dreaming of being a cowboy, and loving the cowboy ways." My childhood days were spent pursuing the life of my heroes in the woods, streams, and fields around my home. My brother and I, along with our buddies, spent our days building forts, blazing trails, and establishing hideouts. Every day was a new adven...

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The End Of All Things

What will happen when your part in the tale of life is finished? What will the end of all things be like? God pulls back the curtain and reveals the true end of all things in Revelation 21:1-22:5. He doesn't give us all the details, but he gives us enough information to keep us going in the fight of faith....

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Rethinking Thankfulness

Paul instructs us with these words in Ephesians 5:19b-20, “Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.”...

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The Call To Persevere

Have you ever considered how the New Testament speaks of the Christian’s life as a fight or intense struggle? A brief survey of the NT will reveal this truth....

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The God Who Cares

Does God have a Plan B? Does God need contingency plans? Perhaps these questions confronted you last week when you read Genesis 6:6 in our Bible reading plan. ...

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Resident Aliens

Lately I have been pondering a thought expressed in 1 Peter 1:1. It is translated various ways. To God’s elect, strangers in the world (NIV). To those who are elect exiles (ESV). To the elect who are sojourners (ASV). The word rendered “strangers”, “exiles”, and “sojourners” is what keeps surfacing in my thoughts....

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