Christ Is Coming Again

READ : 1 Thessalonians The New Testament places great emphasis on the fact that Christ is coming back to this earth. Today churches either neglect the subject or place their emphasis on the details of his coming, many of which are not based on solid biblical interpretation. In any case, we’ve lost nearly all sense of urgency about Jesus’ return. Christ is coming again. The church at Thessalonica was “an example to all the believers” (1:7), and one of its …

Christ Alone

READ : Colossians In Colossians, Paul is combating a heresy which threatens the church, the idea that Christ was just one of a series of mediators between God and man. Paul’s response is that Christ is all-sufficient. Christ must be given the one central place in the plan of salvation because of who he is, God in human flesh, “for in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell” (1:19). He must be given the central place because …

Rejoice

READ : Philippians As was the case with many of Paul’s letters, he was in prison when he wrote this one. Yet his theme is “Rejoice!” Focusing on Jesus Christ, we can have joy in the midst of affliction. Paul has this joy because he knows that even if he is killed for his faith, he is the winner. “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain” (1:21). Dying is gain, because it will mean experiencing …

New Life in Christ

READ : Ephesians 4-6 Believing the truth about Christ must lead to new life in Christ. Paul always begins with doctrine and ends with ethics. This section begins with the words, “Lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called” (4:1). Since the church is the body of Christ, it must be united, which is only possible when we have “all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love” (4:2 ESV). The talents …

In Christ

READ : Ephesians 1-3 Notice how often the term “in Christ” is used in this passage. It was “in him” (1:4) that God chose us from before creation that we might be “holy and blameless.” Therefore the grace that has been “freely bestowed on us” is “in the Beloved” (v. 6). God’s whole great plan is “set forth in Christ” (v. 9). Our hope (v. 12) and our faith (v. 15) is in him. God showed his great power “in …

By Faith Alone

READ : Galatians Galatia was an area in what is now Turkey, which included such churches as Lystra and Derbe. After Paul founded them and left, others came along insisting Gentiles had to adhere to the law of Moses, including circumcision. Paul writes this letter to counteract this false teaching and to reemphasize that we are saved by faith in Christ alone. Galatians was one of the biblical sources which caused Luther to emphasize that central truth and thus begin …