Standing in the True Grace of God, Lesson 23

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By BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR

This week, with the context of Peter’s warnings against the false teachers fresh in our minds, we turn to his encouragement to believers. The broader context of this epistle as we have read thus far has included the certainty of the return of our Lord and the day of judgement, the trustworthiness of the Scriptures, the ultimate punishment of evildoers and the rescue of the godly. Peter now turns to the specifics of the scoffers’ denial of the return of Jesus and encourages his readers to be strengthened in their faith by remembering the prophecies and history of the Scriptures. Continue reading

Standing in the True Grace of God, Lesson 20

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By BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR

In last week’s lesson, we studied Peter’s discussion of the apostolic witness to the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ. This week we will look at how that train of thought flows into his discussion of the divine origin of Scripture. Remember, this is important to Peter’s readers—and to us—because of the false teachers who were—and are even still—infiltrating the church with subversive doctrines and attempting to woo believers away from the truth. Continue reading

Looking To Jesus, Chapter 9

By BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR

This week in our book study we are considering the importance of Scripture in the challenges the church faces in holding fast to truth in a culture of rapidly changing and declining values. Our study of women’s ministry returns again and again to keeping our understanding of biblical womanhood centered on the truth as revealed in God’s holy Scriptures. The challenges come in many shapes; the single issue at the core is: will our homes, our friendships, our fellowship, our ministry, and—frankly—even our Bible studies be shaped by the world or the Word? Continue reading

Looking to Jesus, Chapter 6

By BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR

It’s Summertime here in Texas, which means that school’s out, pools and waterparks are open, and shorts and sandals are standard everyday wear. Of course, being Texas, the shorts and sandals have been in use for several months already. When the sandals come out, it’s pedicure season; the footsies need some sprucing up for their higher visibility; after all, painted toes are part of the accessory package—right? I went for my first pedicure of the season a month ago, and part of the process of getting my feet ready for sandals involved a lot of soaking and special potions and lotions before bringing out the “cheese grater” to tackle my callouses. Continue reading

From The Heart, Chapter 5

By JANA HENRY|CONTRIBUTOR

“Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and how inscrutable His ways!”[1]

In last week’s blog, I wrote of my desire, along with my inability, to share with you all the riches of God’s sovereign covenant love that have been running around in my head these days. I ended by writing that I hoped, in the weeks ahead, that I would be able to take one facet of God’s love which has been deeply impressed upon my heart and share it with you. Continue reading

From The Heart, Chapter 3

By JANA HENRY|CONTRIBUTOR

“Scripture calls us to things that are utterly counterintuitive, utterly countercultural, and demanding in the extreme, but Scripture shows us the Savior and His bride. This glorious sight motivates us to live under God’s authority and to serve Him through the local church, for His glory and our good. Falling in love with Christ means falling in love with His Church.”[1]

The whole process of sanctification is countercultural, when we realize that if we are going to walk worthy of our salvation, we must not be conformed to the world but be transformed by the renewing our mind. We need our affections for Christ to grow so we can loosen our grip on this world. And as our affections for Christ grow, so must our affections for His bride, for together we are members of His body. Continue reading

Looking to Jesus, Chapter 3

By BARBARANNE KELLY|CONTRIBUTOR

We’ve all seen them, the posters (or posts) of a lovely scene with a woman throwing her arms wide with abandon, or walking away from the camera with purposeful step, overlaid with a quote meant to inspire, saying something like:

“Sometimes walking away is the only option. Not because you want to make someone miss you, or realize they took you for granted. But because you finally respect yourself enough to know that you deserve better.”

The memes are many. Whatever the specific quote, the message is clear. Don’t trust other people because they will deplete, disappoint, hurt, reject, abandon, or take you for granted. The solution: Keep a cool distance. Protect yourself. Walk away. Continue reading