God’s very best gift ever!

I am currently reading a book about the greatest opportunity given to any human. God has given us no greater gift than the ability to have a personal relationship with him. When Thomas exclaimed, “My Lord and my God,” to the risen Jesus Christ, he described the reality of everyone who follows Jesus. He can […]

A Magnificent Opportunity

Before you read further into this article, take a minute to focus your attention on the presence of Jesus in your life. Please read this section as Jesus’ message to you today. What is he telling you to do and what will be your response? Jesus: After this the Lord appointed seventy others and sent […]

Rudy and I confess our failings

In today’s YouTube video, Rudy Ross and I discuss how we have failed to fully observe Jesus’ teaching in the last section of Luke 9. Jesus had three would-be followers, who received hard sayings from Jesus. — Luke 9.57-58 – As they were going along the road, someone said to him, “I will follow you […]

Guest Article by Patrick Young

Finding Calmness and Health in Prayer:Church Attendance Benefits for Seniors For many seniors, retirement and distance from children and other relatives can create a sense of isolation and disconnectedness. Such loneliness has detrimental effects on emotional and physical well-being. At a time when health can naturally wane as a part of aging, it’s important for […]

What can we learn from failure?

Michael Jordan says that he has missed more than 9,000 shots in his career, lost over 300 games, and 26 times he has been trusted to take the game-winning shot, but he missed. He says that he has failed over and over again in his basketball career, and that is why he succeeds. The same […]

Why Jesus Wouldn’t talk to Herod

As the ruler over Galilee, Herod was feared and honored by the public. With respect to God’s kingdom, he received no respect at all. In fact, Jesus refused to talk with him. “He [Herod] questioned him at some length, but Jesus gave him no answer” (Luke 23.9). Jesus put in perspective the value we entrust […]

Demons and Deliverance

Jesus taught us to pray, “Deliver us from evil,” (Matthew 6.13). Statistics measure the impact of evil. — As of today, there have been 75 homicides in Kansas City. — The Brown University Cost of War Project estimates the number of deaths from post 9/11 wars to be between 897,000-929,000. — The Cost of War […]

Pay attention, please! Why?

Today’s article will feature the Parable of the Sower, but before we get there a little backtracking is necessary. — When Jesus answered the devil’s temptation, he said, “It is written, ‘One does not live by bread alone.’” (Luke 4.4). This was a quote from Deuteronomy 8.3, which says, “One does not live by bread […]

Why did Jesus use parables?

The Gospel of Luke is filled with parables that Jesus told his listeners. I asked Rudy Ross to share his understanding of parables for today’s YouTube video. Rudy believes much of the Bible is parable-like. That doesn’t mean that the Bible is fiction, but rather a picture that has a deeper meaning than a surface […]

Jesus’ Traveling Companions

The opportunity to travel with Jesus is a major feature of the Gospel of Luke. In Luke, disciples are people who follow him and spend time with Jesus. When you read Luke, pay attention to the words “follow” or “be with.” They describe the opportunity humans have to spend time with Jesus, to watch him, […]

Faith, Forgiveness and Love

If you followed Jesus through Galilee, as did the 12 disciples, you would have been treated to truly “mind blowing” experiences. — You could have overheard dialogue between representatives of a Roman centurion and Jesus. When all was said and done, you would have heard Jesus describe the man’s faith: “I tell you, not even […]

Great Love Given and Received

Luke 7 contains one of the most dramatic stories of love to be found in the Bible. Jesus was invited to a dinner party with Simon, who was a Pharisee. It was customary for guests to recline on pillows, prop themselves on their left elbow, and eat with their right hand. They were seated in […]

What have you done for me lately?

At the beginning of this football season, Patrick Mahomes was the greatest thing since sliced bread. Now that the Chiefs have gotten off to a rocky start, some fans have a petition to put him on the bench in favor of his backup. This illustrates a truth about professional sports. To the fans everything is […]

Questions and Doubts

C. S. Lewis is one of the greatest Christian authors of all time. Rudy Ross calls him the “Einstein of modern Christianity.” Lewis married late in life, and after a short period time his wife died from cancer. Her death thrust Lewis into a crisis of faith and he began to doubt the very message […]

God’s Compassion on Display

When Jesus announced the nature of his ministry in Nazareth, he quoted these words from Isaiah 61. The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,because he has anointed meto bring good news to the poor. (Luke 4.18) About six miles from his hometown of Nazareth, Jesus met a woman who fit the definition of “poor.” […]

Who is in Control Here?

It is well known that “grass” and “weed” can have multiple meanings in contemporary English. The same is true for “power” in the Greek language. “Power” and “authority” refer to the same Greek word. Concerning God’s power, Dallas Willard has defined the kingdom of God as the “effective reach of God’s power.” When Jesus began […]

Following Jesus to the Best Life Possible

I am definitely “direction-ally challenged.” I have enough stories of being lost to fill several blog articles. Needless to say, I am grateful for GPS on my phone and the ability to have step-by-step directions. Recently, Toni and I were visiting our kids in their new home in Kansas. The GPS on my phone wouldn’t […]

Your Inside Condition is Showing

I remember multiple times when I wanted to impress someone, only to blunder horribly with something I said. When the conversation was over, I smacked my forehead and said, “I can’t believe I said that!” Jesus graphically illustrated the source of my problem with these words. “No good tree bears bad fruit, nor again does […]

God’s Wisdom for Crazy Times

It seems today that everyone has a strong opinion about nearly everything. — People are willing to fight and be arrested over wearing a mask on an airplane. — Parents have their children carry protest signs in public demonstrations. — Everyone seems to have an opinion about COVID or politics or big tech. If you […]

God’s Message to the Rich

Jesus began instructions to his followers with some confusing contrasts. Wealth and Poverty “Blessed are you who are poor,for yours is the kingdom of God. “But woe to you who are rich,for you have received your consolation.” (Luke 6.20, 24) Are all rich people in trouble? On the other hand, are all poor people blessed? […]

Jesus Never Beat a Dead Horse

When one of my favorite preachers spoke about Jesus’ interactions with the religious authorities, he reminded his audience that Jesus never beat a dead horse. If you are not familiar with that expression, the point is that it is pointless to whip or spur a dead horse. You’ll get very tired trying to get a […]

When Something Good Becomes Bad

In today’s YouTube video, Rudy Ross and I discuss a “fence around the law.” — The Law is the Ten Commandments and other instructions that can be found in Deuteronomy and Leviticus. In some ways the body of the Law may be compared to our Constitution and Amendments. — Hebrew teachers added other instruction to […]

The Haters Say, “Jesus has too much fun!”

Jesus attended a very nice banquet with tax collectors and his close followers. He challenged the criticisms of the religious authorities by comparing his actions with that of a doctor and saying, “I have come to call not the righteous but sinners to repentance” (Luke 5.32). Another Shot at Jesus The religious authorities didn’t know […]

Good News for Outcasts

When Jesus announced the agenda that was the Father’s will for his life, he applied Isaiah 61 to his life. “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,because he has anointed meto bring good news to the poor. “He has sent me to proclaim release to the captivesand recovery of sight to the blind,to let […]

A Lesson in How to Pray for Others

Several years ago, I read through the New Testament and highlighted every passage that encouraged prayer. The passage we will examine today is one of the best lessons on prayer. A Picture of Intercessory Prayer When you intercede for someone you (1) plead on an other’s behalf, (2) act as a mediator between two parties, […]

Good News for Lepers

If you don’t make a practice of listening to the YouTube videos that Rudy Ross and I produce, today would be a good time to listen. Rudy has some outstanding insights to share about leprosy, the offering that is made for cleansing, and how God transforms humans. Jesus did what he said he would do. […]

The King Assembles His Cabinet

The arrival of Jesus on earth signified the coming of a kingdom that was radically different from the existing world order. When Jesus began his public ministry he said, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news” (Mark 1.15). God’s kingdom is good news, […]

Healing Prayer

About one-third of the record of Jesus’ life and teaching involved healing and deliverance. Three episodes from his life will illustrate his ministry and show us how to follow his example. Let’s watch Jesus in action and see what we can learn about prayer for healing. At Simon’s House Luke records what happened at Simon’s […]

The Captives Set Free!

When Jesus laid out God’s program of action for his life, he said: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me,because he has anointed meto bring good news to the poor.He has sent me to proclaim release to the captivesand recovery of sight to the blind,to let the oppressed go free.” (Luke 4.18) The first […]

Jesus Rejected!

Isaiah described how some people would react to Jesus with these words. He was despised and rejected by others;a man of suffering and acquainted with infirmity;and as one from whom others hide their faceshe was despised, and we held him of no account. (Isaiah 53.3) On the first day that Jesus announced his ministry, he […]

What is the Good News? Jesus Explains.

Gospel means “good news.” Jesus proclaimed the good news of God’s intervention in our troubled world. The Role of the Holy Spirit Before we examine Jesus’ good news message, let’s consider the emphasis that Luke placed on the role of the Holy Spirit. — The Holy Spirit will be the agent who is active in […]

Victory Over Temptation

No one has ever experienced the intensity of temptation like that of Jesus in the wilderness. The three temptations that were presented to Jesus are the three basic issues every human faces. The Role of the Holy Spirit The Spirit anointed Jesus on the day of his baptism. We read, “the Holy Spirit descended upon […]

What Happened When Jesus Was Baptized?

Luke relates the momentous event of Jesus’ baptism in two sentences. Like a suitcase that is tightly packed for a trip, Luke crammed earthshaking thoughts into his report. — Luke 3.21-22 – Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, the heaven was opened, And the […]