Where in the Bible do you see God’s compassion towards the Gentiles? Let’s first take a look at Jonah. Right from the start, Jonah’s disobedience was very evident. A constant tension to withdraw from and to fight against the Lord God is sustained throughout the book. Although many are familiar with the story, it is helpful to read the account with fresh eyes. When we read it anew, we will notice that the audience is kept unaware of the reason for Jonah’s resistance to God’s prophetic calling to Nineveh. It is only until near the end of the narrative that we are enlightened of Jonah’s reason for running away. Jonah was angry that the Lord had relented from Nineveh’s destruction because of His gracious and compassionate character, who is slow to anger and abounding in lovingkindness. Jonah could not live with the reality that the cruel and monstrous Ninevites would be spared the punishment. Did God forget Nineveh deserved annihilation? Who would exact revenge for their evil? Moreover, Jonah knows God is gracious and compassionate. Could not God pour out His favor upon the Israelites? From Jonah’s perspective, the compassionate character of God should have been fully displayed amongst the Israelites who were God’s chosen people. Although it may be true God could have easily portrayed His compassion towards Israel, the emphasis in Jonah’s adventure was to display God’s compassion toward the Gentile nations. We can see the thread of the Lord’s compassion to Gentiles weaved throughout the Scriptures. This common theme begins in Genesis and is carried throughout the Old Testament and into the New Testament until Revelation.
Continue reading “God’s compassion towards Gentiles”
A student telling me that it just doesn’t matter anymore because he’s going back to jail. A boy shaking on the floor overdosed. Another boy sitting in my office drunk. A girl revealing that she had been abused by a close family member. Another girl coming to school with new clothes, and new bruised marks. A student requesting to go to the local clinic during school hours. Students struggling with gender identity. Students staying at shelters, garages, motels, and group homes. Students living with no more hope and attempting to take their own lives. Students ready at any moment to fight and hurt each other – guy on guy, girl on girl, girl on guy, 10 on 7, and sometimes even to the point of getting stabbed or shot at.
Continue reading “Lessons Learned from Working with the Urban Youth”
Written by Elkana Chan
We spend a lot of our time on this earth working; I feel easily preoccupied by it and spend a lot of time thinking about it too. It seems that there is constantly more to do. I often fear, and sometimes even despair, How am I going to do all the things I have to do? And how can I work for the Lord, when I’m not even sure I can finish all that is placed before me? Honoring God in my work feels elusive and I struggle to work heartily for the Lord.
Yet God has shown us the gospel of grace that pervades all aspects of life, including work; I hope that in repeating these truths that He continues to teach me and apply to my heart may likewise encourage you and direct you to worship Him.
Continue reading “Work Heartily as to The Lord”
Written by Jesse Fenn
Does God hear our prayers? Whether you’ve grown up in church or you’ve never stepped foot in a church, you know that the answer of the Bible is a resounding yes. But perhaps a better question is “How does God hear our prayers?” I live on a busy street, so I hear noises constantly, yet If you asked me to recount what I heard, I wouldn’t even know where to start because I rarely, if ever, give any thought to them. Parents will tell you that they hear children’s screaming differently as parents then they did before they had kids. When a friend from school talks to me about national security, I hear it much differently than when I hear the president of the United States talk about national security. I hear things that my parents tell me differently than I hear things that strangers tell me. We hear things differently depending on many different factors. So how does God hear our prayers? Does he hear them as white noise? Does he hear them compassionately, judgmentally, indifferently? The Scriptures answer these questions for us. Specifically, the Scriptures teach us that God does hear our prayers and hears them as both a sovereign king and a loving father.
Continue reading “Does God Hear our Prayers?”
written by Leiana Barreyro
“You’re just not good enough.” These words, though not often explicitly spoken aloud, can frequently wander through our thoughts and seem to become true the longer they are there. We often try to compensate for these feelings of inadequacies through finding affirmation from others or seeking after temporary joys to distract ourselves. Romans 8:16-17 reminds us that, as Christians, we have been adopted into the family of God, we have become children of light and more wonderfully, we are now co-heirs with Christ. Yet our mind still chooses to compare ourselves to standards that are set around us and convinces us that we are still not good enough. What can we do when these superficial comparisons come up? What do we do when being “not good enough” overrules our thoughts?
Continue reading “Living a Spirit-Filled Life”
Why God’s sovereignty mattered to Daniel, and why it should matter to you
written by A C
Lately, the buzz in the media has been centered around certain political figures jostling to become the next President of the United States. And as the drama of state primaries makes its crescendo towards November, the outlook already seems extremely bleak. In what is shaping up to be a finale of choosing between the lesser of two evils, this year’s election process is leaving many of us justifiably apprehensive about who #45 will be and what kind of era they will usher in. What should we make of the presidential hopefuls, and how should we think through the inevitable political change that looms upon our nation’s horizon?
Continue reading “Our God is on His Everlasting Throne”
Friday Night Devotional by David Chow, 4/1/2016
Penned in his famous booklet, “A Call To Prayer,” J.C. Ryle asks the reader again and again three simple words, “DO YOU PRAY?” He goes on to emphasize the importance of prayer as absolutely needful to a man’s salvation, as one of the surest marks of a true Christian, as a source of great encouragement, as the secret of eminent holiness, and as one of the best means of happiness and contentment. He also states that there is no spiritual activity more neglected than prayer and to neglect it is one great cause of spiritual backsliding. If prayer is so important to the Christian life, then stop and ask yourself the question, DO YOU PRAY?
Continue reading “Do You Pray?”
Friday Night Devotional by Michael Teng, 3/5/16
When we think about examples of the effective power of prayer, it is difficult not to think of the miraculous life of Elijah. Elijah was a prophet who prayed often and prayed boldly for God’s power to be revealed. As a result, his ministry was marked by miracle after miracle after miracle after miracle. Some of these miracles included resurrecting people from the dead, calling down fire from heaven, supernatural provision of food, and parting of the Jordan river. Above all, Elijah was one of the only people in history never to taste death, and was brought directly to heaven in a whirlwind (1 & 2 Kings). Often when we read about Elijah, we are left wondering what kind of unique and pious man he had to be for these miracles to occur.
However, James almost underwhelmingly states: “Elijah was a man with a nature like ours, and he prayed earnestly…” (James 5:17)
Continue reading “The Power of Prayer”