A Final Word on Reality

In this final part of the teaching series, A Word on Reality, we at last wrap up John’s masterful letter.  In the end we find a strong reaffirmation of God’s testimony about Jesus and a final call to live comfortably within the borders of reality.  It is only there that we will find the life for which we most long.  Keep reading for more.


A Final Word on Reality

Well, we have finally reached the end of our journey through 1 John.  And what a journey it has been!  We have come a long way and have covered a lot of ground since the beginning of July.  Some of it has been very encouraging and some has been pretty hard-hitting.  What I have tried my best to do, though, throughout this series is to leave you with a clear outline of the boundaries of reality.  Surely not all of this life is black and white, but life according to the law of the kingdom is a simple thing.  It’s not easy, but it is simple: believe in Jesus Christ the Son of God and act in the light of that belief in every circumstance of your life.  Piece of cake, right?  Let’s be real here—that is, after all, what all of this has been about.  Reality is rarely a breeze, but it is always right.  And the call of not only this letter, but of our entire lives is to live in God’s reality, not the world’s fantasy.  Before finishing out the letter this morning, let’s look back over where we’ve been so everything is fresh. Read the rest…

Good Little Children

This past Sunday as we continued our journey in 1 John, A Word on Reality, we looked at both the blessings and the expectations of being called the children of God.  The blessings are incredible beyond our ability to comprehend, but we are at the same time called to live up to a standard consonant with our confession.  What is this standard?  Keep reading to find out.   Read the Rest…

A Vise-Grip on Truth

This week as we continued in the third part of our series through 1 John, A Word on Reality, we looked at how we can stand firm in the reality of God against this world’s unrelenting tide of fantasies and their ever more aggressive attempts to move in their direction.  If we are going to resist the lies of this world, there is one key thing we must do.  Read on to find out what it is.


A Vise-Grip on Truth

For the past couple of summers, Lisa and I have enjoyed the show “Fool Us with Penn and Teller” on the CW Network.  It’s a gameshow wherein four different magicians bring their best tricks to try and fool the world-famous magician duo.  The challenge is that they’ve been at it for over 40 years and know just about everything there is to know about magic and how to do it.  While there are a few tricks we have been able to figure out, there are some that leave us absolutely flummoxed as to how they did it.  Any really good magic trick can leave you feeling like maybe there’s more to this world than we know about.  Now, of course, no magic show is any more than a cleverly disguised trick, but the intimation of something more is part of its appeal.  Still, while the nod and wink of a magician is entertaining, following that rabbit all the way down its hole can lead, as Alice discovered, to more trouble than most of us would care to find.   Read the rest…

Whose Word Is Final?

In part two of our teaching series, A Word on Reality, we talked about how we can know with assurance that we are close to God by looking at 1 John 2:1-17.  What is the evidence of a life spent in Christ?  Read on for the answer.


Whose Word Is Final?

Close your eyes for me for just a minute.  I’m going to say some words and I want you to internally react to them.  Whatever your reaction is, I want you to just dwell on it for a moment and then we’ll talk about it in a bit.  Heaven.  Grace.  Love.  The world.  Sin.  Submission.  Obedience.  Okay, open your eyes.  Now, by a show of hands, how many of you reacted positively to all of those words?  Anyone react negatively to all of them?  How many were split between some of the words?  How many of you reacted positively to the first couple of words and more negatively to the ones after that?  Okay, how about this one: how many of your reactions went from most positive to most negative in the order of the words as I spoke them?  That last word, obedience, leaves a sour taste in the mouths of a lot of people today.  I think part of the reason for this is that we have been fed since birth a worldview by our culture that believes the highest good is achieved when we are singularly in control of our lives.  Now, while there are a few people in the world who have personalities that are very comfortable in a setting where we simply do as we are told, I suspect they are more the exception than the rule.   Read the rest…