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Posts by Tom Jackson

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Get Wisdom

get.wisdom

Life is not a game about pursuing trivial things; whatever else you get this year, be sure that you determine to get wisdom....

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A Heavenly Vision

A.Heavenly.Vision

What would it be like to receive a personal vision from Jesus for our lives and ministry? This happened to Paul, and from the vision Jesus gave him, we learn something about the priorities that matter to God....

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Winning with Past, Present, and Future

winning_with_past_present_future

Our relationship to time shapes the trajectory of our lives. ...

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The correct posture for worship

worship.posture

Sitting, standing, kneeling ... does body posture matter when we worship God?...

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The Good Shepherd

the.good.shepherd

The baby whose birth in Bethlehem was attended by shepherds was born to be the good shepherd of God's people....

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Not A Watchmaker

Not.A.Watchmaker

In one of her biggest hit songs, Bette Midler sings that God is watching us from a distance. It's a beautiful song, except that it's not true. God's not watching from a distance; he is personally engaged in the details of our lives....

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Christmas Maths

Christmas_Maths

Mathew's introduction to the Christmas story makes one big point: it all adds up to Christ....

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Better Together

Better Together

The idea of a self-made man is a foreign concept to the Bible; we need the support and encouragement of others on our spiritual journey. ...

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The Power of Small Beginnings

powerofsmallbeginnings

Great endings are almost always the fruit of small beginnings; faithfulness with little positions us for destiny....

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Adopted

Adopted.blog

What's the greatest benefit of the of gospel? Forgiveness? Justification? Eternal life? Perhaps the greatest benefit God blesses us with is that we are adopted into the family of God and inherit all the privileges and responsibilities that go with being sons of God....

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The Reformation

The Reformation Blog

On 31st October 2017, we celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, informally started when Martin Luther nailed 95 theses (talking points) to the church door in Wittenberg. What began as a call for conversation called God’s people back to scripture and transformed the Church. Here we reflect on the significance of this event....

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Stairway to ... ?

Stairway to ... ?

What does the Bible teach about how we can be brought close to God? Do we have to climb a stairway to heaven?...

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The Harbour Lights

the.harbour.lights

God does not want us to be uniformed regarding his will; he speaks to us in a variety of ways so that we can move forward with confidence....

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Turkeys and Eagles

Turkjeys and Eagles

God created us in Christ for a full life of destiny and purpose. But sometimes we forget who we are....

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All you need is ...

Faith Hope Love BLOG

The balanced Christian life rests on the power-triad of faith, hope, and love....

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Fan the Flame

patrick.hendry.C

Imagine an NBA superstar with amazing talent ... but too afraid to walk onto the basketball court. Paul challenges Timothy - and us - to adopt a proactive posture towards our gifts....

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We Are Your Church

We Are Your Church

The Antioch church had good thing going, but the apostles in Jerusalem were suspicious: they heard that Jews and Gentiles were worshipping together, so they sent Barnabas to check out the situation. ...

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Better Than Wet

Better Than Wet

Why would Jesus choose something so simple as going down into water and being raised up as a picture of the relationship we have with him through faith? What would he want us to get water baptised?...

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The Wrong Way Road Trip

Road Trip

Have you ever hit a moment in life when you felt the need to hit the reset button? That happened to me on the way to a conference in Cincinnati, Ohio. My friend and I were solving all the world's problems: we developed solutions for world hunger, global poverty, ending racism, and how to understand God's sovereignty and human choice. It was an amazing conversation, and it ...

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What's In Your Wallet?

whatsinyourwallet

Acknowledging that Jesus is King is not conceptually difficult; submitting to his Lordship is a daily way of life for those who seek to follow him....

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A Destination and A Journey

Life - destination or journey?

It's not about the destination - it's about the journey. Or is it? While the encouragement to 'smell the roses along the way' is good, it's also important to realise that direction and destiny are connected. ...

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Lost!

Lost!

Normally, my wife is madly in love with me and thinks I'm great. But the time she was off the chart angry with me was when I lost our daughters....

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Dynamite!

Slide1-17

Have you ever tried to hoover your lounge without the vacuum cleaner plugged in? It doesn't do any good to go through the motions if you're not connected to the power source. ...

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The Happy Land

The_Happy_Land

God's presence with us in the Holy Spirit provides many benefits; knowing this is only the first step - encountering and enjoying God is the goal....

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The Fellowship of the Holy Spirit

fellowshipoftheholyspirit

The fellowship of the Holy Spirit (2 Corinthians 13:14) is one of the core benefits of following Jesus. But what does the Holy Spirit do in our lives?...

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Better Than a TED Talk

Ted Talk

If you had 18 minutes to deliver the message of your life, what would you say? Paul gives us some pointers on maximising opportunities to deliver a profound, powerful, and trans-cultural message....

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Fountain of Life

Fountain.of.life

Imagine crawling across a desert, attacked by the scorching sun, desperate for a drink of water. How cool would it be - in more ways than one - to encounter someone handing out cups of water. For anyone with spiritual thirst, Jesus gives something much better than water....

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The Heart of the Gospel

Slide1-16

What's the best news you ever heard? When Paul went to places like Rome, Corinth, and Athens, he gave people the gospel - absolutely the best news he had ever come in contact with....

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The Rise, Wreck, and Restoration of Samson

Samson

Did you ever wish that you had more gifts, more talents, and more abilities? Samson had all that - and more - and still failed. God, however, is the master of writing a new chapter in our lives....

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Following Jesus

Following Jesus

Someone recently asked me: 'What does it mean to follow Jesus - practically - on a day to day basis?' That's a great question - and here's my answer....

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Extravagance

What is the appropriate way to follow, worship, and honour Jesus? An obscure woman gives us a clue....

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How to Fail with God

How.to.Fail.With.God

Positive learning involves drawing on the successes of others who can show us what to do. Negative learning is about observing the mistakes of others so that we don't do what they've done. The book of Judges is a grand lesson in what NOT to do....

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Strength and Courage

Strength and Courage

Have you ever faced a moment of genuine intimidation? Have you ever been gripped with fear to the degree that you were paralysed - unable to move? This is what Joshua felt as he stood at the threshold of his moment of destiny....

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Living Close to God's Presence

Living Close to God's Presence

When navigating transitional moments, it's good to live close to God's presence....

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A King, His Dogs, and Forgiveness

A King's Dog

In the 14th century, Robert Bruce of Scotland was leading his men in a battle to gain independence from England. Near the end of the conflict, the English wanted to capture Bruce to keep him from the Scottish crown. So they put his own bloodhounds on his trail. ...

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Minority Report

Minority Report

We often found ourselves surrounded by a cacophony of voices competing for our attention. And often, the majority of these voices are not encouraging faith; rather, they are dispensing doubt. But it is through the minority report of faith that we inherit God's promises....

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Heart and Soul

Heart and Soul

Over the years, 'Heart and Soul' has been a common theme in pop music: lovers express the intensity of their feelings for another as encompassing the totality of our being, captured in the phrase 'heart and soul'. The song writers may not know they're quoting Moses, who used this phrase as a way of encapsulating appropriate devotion to God....

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Justice, Jubilee, and Generosity

Justice Jubilee Generosity

What would it be like to hit the economic re-set button every fifty years? Jesus proclaims the year of the Lord favour and draws on Jubilee themes to explain the significance of salvation. ...

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Dwelling in God's Presence

Sun Presence

God's presence is the greatest place there is. But getting there is trickier than we might imagine....

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God's Maths: 2 > 3

2>3

God's two is bigger than than any human three....

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From Good To Great

Good To Great

What does it look like to live an extraordinary life? Is it possible to make the journey from 'not bad' to 'pretty good' ... or beyond?...

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Playing With Fire

Slide1-10

Israel’s sinful idolatry led to a distortion of true worship and brought about God’s righteous condemnation. Idolatry is dangerous because it distorts our view of God and corrupts our behaviour, leading us away from God as He has revealed Himself and toward a false god who is powerless to save and transform us. In response to Israel’s just condemnation, Moses stepped...

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From Bitter to Blessed

From Bitter to Blessed

The Negev is a dry, hot desert region in the southern part of Israel. If you were wandering through it, heading towards the northwest, you would eventually come to a large body of water. After the dry, arid, dusty journey through the desert, you would be excited about seeing so much water. The problem is that that the body of water is the Red Sea, packed with so much salt ...

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Our Great Savlation

Our Great Salvation

Our salvation in Christ is rich beyond measure. By understanding what God did to deliver his people from Egypt through blood, water, and smoke and fire, we have a greater appreciation for what Christ has done for us....

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An Encounter With God

Encounter with God

Have you ever felt like running away and hiding from God, his people, and his purposes? That's exactly where Moses was. His failure was so large he assumed he was irredeemable. The good news is that God creates us on purpose and fills us with purpose in Christ, but we are easily knocked off course by our own desires or our failures. In his love and mercy God finds us, reac...

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Faith in a Faithful God

Faith in a Faithful God

Sometimes when we look at the pain of our past, or it seems like God is not with us in the present, we question whether he will be faithful to his promises about the future. Scripture teaches that God is faithful to heal our past, to be with us in the present, and to fulfil his plans for our future. ...

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Visionary Praying

Slide1-9

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to have been a Christian during the period described in Acts when Peter, John, Barnabas and Paul were local church pastors? Whatever else may be different, hanging out with these apostolic leaders would mean that your prayer life would take a huge step forward....

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The Vision of Jesus

The Vision of Jesus Blog

Perspective is a function of location; to gain a clear vision, sometimes we have to leave the valleys of everyday life and ascend the mountain tops God provides in his word. When we do this, we see that God has called Centrepoint to empower people to follow Jesus in community, worship, and mission....

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A Spiritual MOT

Spiritual MOT - BLOG

Every year our cars undergo an MOT test to validate their road-worthiness. Are our hearts ready for the new year? In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus provides a series of diagnostic teachings to evaluate what's happening in our heart. While challenging, his teaching exposes our need for his grace so that we will open our lives to the working of God's Spirit. ...

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Peace On Earth

Peace On Earth

When we look around the world, we may be wondering, 'Where's the Peace?' When we work so hard to exclude God from our lives, it shouldn't surprise us that there is a peace deficit in the world. More than peace at the geopolitical level, God offers us peace with himself. At Christmas God promises peace on earth; we experience this peace through Christ's presence in our life...

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Are We There Yet?

Are We There Yet - blog

The word 'Christmas' brings many thoughts, images, and feelings to our minds. For me, it will forever be associated with a road trip. Every year, a few days before Christmas, we would hop in the car and make the long trek from Black Mountain, North Carolina to a little town called McRae, Georgia. This is where my grandparents lived. Even though the journey was long and ard...

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Matthew's Math

Matthew.s.Math

Great books often start with gripping introductions; we get hooked and so we keep reading. So then why does Matthew start his gospel with a geneology?...

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More Than A Feeling

More than a feeling

Charlie Brown Christmas remains one of my favourite Christmas films. It tells the story of how a boy - Charlie Brown - just isn't feeling it in the run up to Christmas. So he goes on a quest to discover the true meaning of Christmas. Have you ever felt that way - like you're just not feeling it? The great news emerging from Luke 2:1-20 is that Christmas is so much more tha...

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Three Days In Vienna

Three Days in Vienna

The New Testament churches described in Acts perpetually challenge me for this reason: they were consistently probing opportunities to advance the gospel of Jesus. And no church exemplifies this spirit better than Antioch (Acts 13:1-3). Not content to build a local dream team of pastors, when the leader spent time praying and fasting and listening to the Holy Spirit, their...

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The Call of Christmas

Call of Christmas Blog

The opening scene of the Christmas story is a giant advertisement for God's capacity to use ordinary people for extraordinary things. Like Mary and Joseph, saying 'yes' to God means we step into a realm of remarkable grace, a very high price tag, and the amazing opportunity to share the love and truth of Christ with others....

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Dreams, Darkness, Destiny

Dreams Darkness and Destiny

Children are inspiring because their dream-machine has not yet been damaged. They live with the hopefulness that if they can dream it, it can happen. Somehow life seems to relentlessly torpedo our instinctive dream machine until it is broken, domesticated, or forgotten. ...

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Time for a Change

Time For Change

The gradual change in colour, and then the disappearance, of leaves from tress during the autumn season is a reminder that change is a built-in component of human life. But sometimes we need a different kind of change - a change we can't produce, a change that can only be effected by God. This is what Jacob needed in Genesis 32....

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God's Dysfunctional Family

God's Dysfunctional Family

The real stories of messed up people confirm both our need for salvation and the richness of God's grace....

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Digging Wells and Building Altars

Post_DiggingWells

Living in dry places is difficult unless you have access to springs of water. God has given us covenant promises including his perpetual presence. Time, tradition, neglect and doubt can cover over these wells and block access to God's provision. Following Jesus involves learning how to dig wells and build altars. ...

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Jesus Our Substitute

When God tested Abraham, he provided a ram to be sacrificed in place of Isaac. Jesus is our substitute, the lamb of God sacrificed in our place. The essence of the Christian life is a perpetual looking to Jesus, trusting in Jesus, and thanking Jesus for what he has done for us. Jesus is the perfect substitute....

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A Sign of Grace

post_rainbow-min

We don't deserve grace, but God gives it anyway. Like the ark of Noah, Jesus is the one who takes us safely through God's judgment against sin. ...

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The Power of GO!

post_go-min

The first word God spoke to Abraham was 'Go!'; the last word Jesus spoke to his disciples was 'Go!'. When we follow Jesus and go into the new place, people, and purpose He has for us, good things happen....

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City on a Hill

post_cityonahill

Jesus calls his people to be a city on a hill, revealing the truth, life, and love of Christ to a world in need....

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Unashamed

Paul was unashamed of the gospel; when we understand the power of God as revealed in the gospel, neither will we be ashamed....

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The Spread of Sin.

Cain was the elder brother who murdered Abel, his younger brother, out of jealosy. We have the perfect older brother, Jesus, who doesn't murder us, but who died in our place to save us from sin....

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The Great Rebellion

Sin disrupts our relationship with God, others, and creation. All of this is restored in Christ. ...

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In His Image

The story of creation doesn't end with beautiful earth, amazing animals, majestic mountains and serene seas. In the beginning, God created everything - including people. Genesis 1:26 teaches that we were made in the image of God. What does this mean? Not only has God shared dimensions of his being including intellectual, emotive, and relational capacity, Genesis describes ...

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The Story Begins

In the beginning God created everything good through his son. ...

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The Forever View

We are surrounded by temporary things. What would life be like if we lived in the context of eternity?...

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A Gospel Vision

The Philippian church is a fascinating example of what happens when the gospel gets hold of a faith communinty. There are a few things we can learn from them....

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Big Words: Propitiation

Big words in the Bible are sometimes packed with big meaning - and that's true of propitiation. What is propitiation? How does it benefit it us? Why does God use big words? Can this help me in scrabble? Let's investigate!...

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The Prayer From Hell

What do you when there's no way out? What do you say when the game is up? A little prayer in a little chapter in a little book of the Bible gives us a BIG answers....

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Issues of the Heart

David, Paul, and Jesus all teach that, even though our hearts may be polluted with sin, they can be cleansed by faith. ...

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Let's Have A Drink

Have you ever felt the need or the desire to thirst for more? The Psalmist invites us to be refreshed as we meditate on God's glorious character....

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When My Strength Is Small

This is the story about a woman who felt weak - and God used her to do something great....

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The Portable Well

In warning the Corinthians about idolatry, Paul paints a powerful picture of God's perpetual provision for his people....

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First Things

Getting our priorities right is central to ensuring that arrive at the right destination. In 1st Corinthians 15, Paul reminds the Corinthians about "first things."...

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Figs, Temples, and Prayer

On the first day in Jerusalem after his triumphal entry Jesus challenges our faith and the religious status quo....

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Taxes, Tithes, and Temples

The disciples were perpetually getting side-tracked. Jesus uses his second day in Jerusalem to teach his followers how to keep the the main thing the main thing....

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Beauty and Betrayal in Bethany

A beautiful act of worship paints a prophetic picture of what Jesus is preparing to do....

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A Night To Remember

Jesus spent his last hours before his arrest eating and talking with his disciples. We tend to think that we'd never betray Jesus; he taught us to pray,"Lead us not into temptation."...

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Why Have You Forsaken Me?

The Victory of the Triumphal Entry quickly disintegrated into a fast-paced plot to kill Jesus that ended in his illegal execution. Where was God when all that was going on?...

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The Worst Saturday Ever

What happens when the greatest dream ever becomes the biggest nightmare possible? That's what faced the disciples on the worst Saturday ever....

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For!

The power of the death of Jesus is captured in one little word that can change our lives....

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Surviving The Storms

In life we face a variety of storms types. How do we respond? What do we do to navigate each storm?...

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Revelation

Hope in the future God has planned is one of the hallarks of the Christian faith. Following Jesus isn't only about enjoying and honouring Him today; it is also about living in expectation of the beautiful future he has created....

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The Jesus Way

How did Jesus respond to the needs of peoples around him? A brief glimpse from Matthew describes a very compassionate King....

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Escaping Mediocrity

Sometimes the view halfway up is good. But sometimes - God has something better for us....

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Giving Preaching a Proper Place

Why is preaching so important? In this guest post, Al Mohler describes the importance of expository preaching....

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An Evening Prayer

The idea of a vesper - an evening prayer of thanks and consecration, is more than a good idea - it's something that God's people seem to have done in many places in the Bible.  One example is Psalm 141, where David prays and lifts his had to God as an evening sacrifice.  I came across this vesper (evening prayer) from the Canadian and American Reformed Church, an...

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Restoration

God is not nostalgic; He works forward to bring greater blessing to his His people, even when they have difficulty believing....

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A Picture of Progress

What does gospel progress look like? It looks good - but sometimes it comes with problems, prison and praise. Ultimately - all the praise is to God's glorious grace. ...

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The Pathway To Maturity

God has a vision for our lives, and a pathway that will lead to the kind of maturity we hope for....

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About This Word Preach

Stop preaching at me! Instead, just be a nice person. Isn't this the Jesus way?...

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The Bible is a Beautiful Book

The beauty of the Bible is seemingly infitite.  Just like the mercies of God that are new every morning - God's word holds out for us an endless supply of God-centred truth.  Some of the great pastors, preachers, and theologians offer their thoughts on the beauty of scripture: “There is an infinite majesty about every line of Scripture, but especially abou...

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Boxing God

Can we put God in a box? The right answer is both no - and yes....

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Not What You Asked For

In John 17, Jesus identifies three key things that he has given to us. These are not necessarily what we asked for - but they are what He has given. And they are good things. ...

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Grace Works

Does God's grace mean that we don't have to obey God? If we are saved by grace, what does it mean to follow Jesus? The church in Antioch had a strong foundation of grace - and so should we!...

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Reasonable Faith in a Toxic Environment

Faith is central to being a Christian - without it - we can't know or please God. But in the cultural undercurrent of skepticism that pervades contemporary Europe, how can we we grow strong in faith? God's Word gives us some answers. ...

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An Enforced Peace

Through his life, death and resurrection, Jesus has accomplished more than the personal salvation of lost people: He has laid the groundwork for the ultimate restoration of all things to His intended purpose. ...

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Cause and Effect

In life, sometimes we end up between a rock and a hard place. There are moments when the only action we can take is to trust God....

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Palm Sunday and Venn Diagrams

Who was in the crowd that welcomed Jesus to Jerusalem? And who wanted Jesus crucified? Venn diagrams help us understand. ...

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The Indicative/Imperative Dream

Jesus us gives us a new identity and calls us to obey Him. Faithfulness is both - and that's the Jesus dream for his people....

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A Good View

God reveals Himself to us in the Bible as good; his goodness is the proper lens through which we view and perceive the world....

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Out of the Dark Room

Have you ever landed in a dark room? Almost all of us have had a moment or a day or a week; a month or even longer - where it seems like where stuck in some kind of weird vibe, and we can’t get out. The good news is that God cares about where we are - and He offers a way into the light....

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Grace for a Dysfunctional Family

The story of Joseph is about God bringing salvation to the world by saving a family. And this family really needed the help of God - it was more dysfunctional than most families are today. But God is more powerful than the sin that marked it, and in the end, God wins....

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Reasonable Worship

We live in an age when it makes no sense to follow Jesus. Paul reminds the Christians in Rome that - in light of God's amazing mercies to us in Christ, living a life of sacrificial obedience to God is supremely reasonable....

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Gump, God, and Growth: The God/People Partnership in Progress

How do we grow? How do churches grow? Is it God or people who responsible? Or is it both? Scripture describes a beautiful synergism where God works with his people to fulfil a breath-taking picture....

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The Jesus Deal

Following Jesus comes with a high price tag. But the promised pay-out promised makes this the best deal ever. ...

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The Price On Your Head

We daily exchange time; our value estimation of time resides in our distinction between what is eternal and what is temporal....

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Fighting Words

Words are not neutral; not only do they chart our destiny, they affirm the reality that defines our lives....

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You've Got A Friend In Me

We all need friends - both human and divine; Jesus offers the ultimate friendship we can experience. ...

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Stuck In A Moment

We all have moments of doubt, and Elijah was no different. When God met him in a cave, Elijah was focused on his past. God re-directed him towards a future of hope and destiny....

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Planck's Constant Change

Although the Bible teaches permanent moral codes, we live in an age seeking to destroy every boundary. God offers a more certain way forward....

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Rest for the Weary Soul

David wrote that "The law of the LORD is perfect, refreshing the soul" (Psalm 19:7). To enjoy the refreshed soul on offer by God, we need to learn how to love God's law. ...

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Righteous!

The gospel both demonstrates and conveys God's righteousness: not only is God righteous is justifying sinners; He makes sinners righteous....

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A Picture of Grace

Grace is a beautiful word - and it is on full display in the life of King David, who didn't simply experience God's grace, but looked for opportunities to share it with others. ...

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Hating the Name of Jesus

The profile of each person's spiritual journey is unique; those journeys touched by God's grace, however, end well. ...

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The Joshua Tree

Life is a spiritual desert in which ultimate satisfaction is found in only one source. ...

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How We Know What We Know

How do we know what we know? This is the topic of exploration under the philosophical category called epistemology. Epistemology is a big word that simply means 'how we know what we know'. According to Jesus, knowledge is not morally neutral; faith precedes understanding. ...

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What About Holiness?

The word 'holy' is used as an adjective for many things - some not nice to say! But what is this word? What does it mean? Why does it matter that God is holy?...

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Reflections on Ten Years

This past Sunday evening we paused to give God thanks for the first ten years of Centrepoint Church and to look forward in faith to the next tens years. In reflecting on our journey, I make a few observations about church planting. ...

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