2 Corinthians 1:20 – “For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through Him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God.”

Promise – a declaration or assurance that one will do a particular thing or that a particular thing will happen.

Joshua 23:14 – You know with all your heart and soul that not one of all the good promises the Lord your God gave you has failed. Every promise has been fulfilled; not one has failed.” 

God has made many promises to us. Let me share a few:

1 John 2:24-25 – “As for you, see that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you. If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father. 25 And this is what he promised us—eternal life.”

1 John 1:9 – “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

Psalms 103:12 – “as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us..”

John 16:13 –  “But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.”

Joshua 1:9 – “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

I haven’t counted, but I have read there are well over a thousand promises in the Bible. I look at God’s promises as guidance. Some of God’s promises direct us to do something in which God says when we do, there’s a blessing in it. For example, we studied Proverbs 3:5-6 – “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to Him and He will guide your path.” If you think about it, this is a huge promise from God! He’s saying we don’t need to rely on our own wisdom to make decisions in life, but rather turn those decisions over to Him, the creator of the universe, and let Him guide our decisions. Wow! That’s a powerful promise, BUT it requires us to turn those decisions over to Him, and that requires our last word – “FAITH”. I find, including myself, that people struggle with giving things over to God. If I can share anything with you, start turning your struggles and decisions over to God now! I speak from experience that He will give you better direction than you will make on your own. Trust in the Lord! You may, and probably won’t get an immediate answer, but remember God’s timing is not our timing, and God’s timing is always perfect, not ours. But you will know when God, through the Holy Spirit, gives you answers and direction.

The world is a heap of broken promises. It is filled with good intentions, but we are broken, and imperfect, and often don’t keep the promises we make. The sooner you begin putting your trust in the Lord, your whole trust, the sooner you will walk out life in God’s promises. God may not answer you the way you want, but He will always do what is best for you. It may mean you have to walk through struggles, but understand God is growing and strengthening us through those struggles. In the end, remember God’s greatest promise that if we remain in Him, He will give us eternal life with Him.


Relativism is the belief that there’s no absolute truth, only the truths that a particular individual or culture happen to believe. I was driving today and saw a bumper sticker I’m sure you’ve seen many times. The video below will give you a brief history of the origin of this aggregation of symbols:

COEXIST has become a symbol to promote world peace and specifically peace among the various religions, which is a good thing (I believe this was Bono’s message in the video). However, it has also become a symbol of religious relativism.  Religious relativism says that there are no absolutes regarding god and a divine creator. In other words, each religion of the world has it right and each leads down a path to God.

Below is a short video by Sean McDowell that outlines why Christianity is different from all the other religions of the world. I hope you will take a couple of minutes to watch

Let me close with this to make my point about truth. In John chapter 18, Jesus has been arrested and is taken ultimately to Pontious Pilate, the fifth Prefect of the Roman province of Judea. The Jewish leaders want Pilate to judge and sentence Jesus, so Pilate confronts Jesus and here is part of that exchange from John 18:

37 “You are a king, then!” said Pilate.

Jesus answered, “You say that I am a king. In fact, the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth. Everyone on the side of truth listens to me.”

38 “What is truth?” retorted Pilate.

I emphasized the response by Jesus, “the reason I was born and came into the world is to testify to the truth.” God sent His only son on a rescue mission to save the world and to save you and me. The purpose of that mission was to bring forth the truth. As teenagers, you may already encounter other teens who adopt a religious relativism view. I can almost certainly guarantee you will encounter this mindset in the next few years. Our culture promotes this view and the view that no one is wrong and no one is right, we all should just accept each person’s viewpoint and belief system and morality. There has to be absolute truth! God created the world and the universe in order, not chaos. It isn’t relative, it’s definite. Because He loves us, Jesus wants us to know that there is only one truth and only one way to God.

Isaiah 7:14 “Prophecy of Christ’s Birth”

“Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.”

As we approach Christmas, I thought it would be fun and interesting for us to study Old Testament  prophecies of the coming of Christ. We start with this verse from Isaiah where Isaiah makes it clear the Messiah would be born of a virgin.  First, keep in mind that Isaiah’s prophecy was made 700 years before the birth of Christ!

Why was the virgin birth significant? Again, I’m not a theologian, and believe me, there are volumes upon volumes written on this subject. But let me give you this to consider:

  1. Jesus is the Son of God. Luke 1:35 -“The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the holy one to be born will be called the Son of God.”
  2. Born with the Spirit of God. Adam and Eve were created by God to be immortal. But when they sinned, their human spirit died and they would perish. God told Adam, “You were made out of the ground. You will return to it when you die.” (Genesis 3:19). Jesus could not be born with the Original Sin lineage of death from Adam. Romans 5:12 – “Sin entered the world because one man sinned. And death came because of sin. Everyone sinned, so death came to all people.” Note that sin entered the world because of one man. It was Adam who passed sin to mankind, not Eve.
  3. The unblemished lamb. Jesus came to fulfill the law. The instructions given in Exodus 12:5 for proper sacrifices to God (aka the Law) states, “The animals you choose must be year-old males without defect, and you may take them from the sheep or the goats.” The sacrificial lamb must be unblemished. 1 Peter 1:18-19 says, “For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, 19 but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.”

Romans 8:37 “More than Conquerors”

“No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.”

This week we are focusing on a verse we should all take to heart – “we are more than conquerors”. I’m going to break this into three pieces beginning with the first part of the verse – “NO, IN ALL THESE THINGS” What are THESE THINGS? To put in context, we go back to the preceding verses in Romans:

Romans 8:28-30 –   “28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. 29 For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.”

Digest these words! There’s a lot God is revealing to us through Paul in these verses.


1 John 4:7-8

“Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God because God is love.”

“WHOEVER DOES NOT LOVE DOES NOT KNOW GOD” This is a strong, profound statement for all of us as Christians. Pray over these words today! I know I have a lot of room for improvement. How do these words reflect your life?

Weekend Post – The Truth

John 14:6 – “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

If you were at church today and heard Pastor Kirk’s message, you saw reference to this verse, which was one of our verses we studied a few weeks back. I hope when you heard and read the verse today in the notes, you said, “Wow! I know this verse.”

I also hope you realized both the truth and the hope in Pastor Kirk’s message today that despite the world’s view that ‘it doesn’t matter what I believe,’ we not only know the truth, but we find our hope in the truth of Jesus and his response to Thomas, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” As Pastor Kirk pointed out, Christianity isn’t an exclusive faith. Jesus, knowing that the world would provide many false truths and false hopes, provides everyone the open door and clear path to finding the way, the truth, and the life everlasting.

Tying back to our current verse, Ephesians 2:4-5 “But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved,” when we were saved, when we confessed our sins and believed in our heart that He was raised from the dead, we were made alive with Christ! His grace saved us. His grace continues to save us! His grace is not a free pass to continue to sin. It is His amazing gift to overcome our brokenness and to die to our selfish nature. I leave you a song by All Sons and Daughters that speaks to His grace for you and me:




Ephesians 2:4-5

“God, who is rich in mercy”

Rich synonyms include; plentiful, abundant, lavish, generous, bountiful.

Mercy – compassion or forgiveness shown toward someone whom it is within one’s power to punish or harm.

When I put the synonyms for rich and the definition of mercy together, what jumps out to me is “abundant compassion”, “lavish forgiveness”! We have a Father in heaven who cares deeply about us. I hope you will allow this to permeate your heart today.

2 Corinthians 5:17 (Final Post)

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, they are a  new creation: The old has gone, the new is here!”

We finalize 2 Corinthians 5:17 with the final statement – “THE OLD HAS GONE, THE NEW IS HERE!” Now you may not have noticed, but the end of this statement has an exclamation point. In spite of my personal excitement, I didn’t add that exclamation point, it was already there. Paul had the same excitement when he penned them and we should too!

The common problem I see with many Christians is that they have a hard time letting go of the old. I hope you will reflect on these words today.

Have a great weekend! Jim

2 Corinthians 5:17

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”

I hope this next part of the verse gets you fired up! “THE NEW CREATION HAS COME”. You are a New Creation in Christ Jesus! Are you connecting the pieces together yet through the verses we’ve studied thus far? In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. Then the Word became flesh, and He made His dwelling among us. John said they saw His Glory, the glory of the one and only Son, sent by the Father, and full of grace and truth. Because He is the way, and truth and life, we no longer lean on our own understanding but allow the Good Shepherd to guide our path. And because we have experienced Christ, and the fullness of His Love, we are in Him, we are a New Creation!

Have you experienced the love of Christ and know you have been transformed and are a New Creation? Pray over this today! Walk in the knowledge that you are a New Creation! If you haven’t felt that depth of Christ’s love yet, that’s okay. I didn’t find the love of Jesus until I was in my 30’s. BUT, if that is you, talk with Pastor Joe or me or one of the youth leaders. You don’t have to wait until your 30’s to experience the love of Christ and believe me, you don’t want to wait.