Most of you are probably aware of the horrible recent events in Charlottesville, VA. Thirty-seven people were violently injured and one young woman lost her life. It all started with a group protesting the removal of a Robert E. Lee statue. There are obviously many racist hate groups who want to see monuments like these protected. But there are also a lot of well-meaning Christians who stand up for symbols of the Confederacy as well. I want to appeal to my brothers and sisters in Christ to love your neighbors more than you love monuments and flags.

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To be honest, I feel even a little bit guilty typing the words, “Oh my God.” Of course, it is certainly not wrong to use the phrase “Oh my God” when you are actually talking to God or about God (2 Chronicles 6:40). But countless people (including many Christians) use this phrase as an exclamation of surprise or disbelief. Not to mention the popular abbreviation, “OMG.” So, is this practice wrong? What does the Bible say about this?

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I recently heard a podcast interview of Andy Davis, who has memorized 43 books of the Bible. Can you imagine, 43 books of the Bible? His strategy for memorizing Scripture really isn’t complicated at all. It something any of us could do. Yes, even you. In today’s brief post I will share with you Davis’ proven strategy for memorizing Scripture.

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Over the last 16 years in ministry, I have served under the leadership of some wonderful elders. They have done so many things to encourage and shepherd me. Sadly, some preachers get little to no encouragement from the elders under whom they serve. So I thought it might be helpful to share some of the things my elders have done for me over the years, in hopes that other elders would do the same for their preachers.

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I would be surprised if there was anyone who had thought seriously about the claims of the gospel and not had some doubts. If we are honest about what the Bible asks us to accept, there will be times when we say, “Could all this really be true?” I’ve experienced times like that and I’ve known plenty of mature Christians – leaders in the church – who’ve gone through seasons of doubt and come out stronger on the other side. Here are four things you can do when you have doubts:

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It may seem strange to many people that we gather up on Sundays to sing songs. They may think, “I don’t particularly like to sing.” Or, “I’m not a good singer; I can’t imagine singing in public like that, where other people can hear you.” Actually, we’re not supposed to sing because of a particular fondness for it or because of a talent for it. Here are some of the reasons the church is supposed to sing.

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In every culture, there are biblical principles and practices that are culturally acceptable; things to which even non-believers say, “Yes, that’s a great idea. Everyone should live like that.” And there are other principles and practices non-believers find reprehensible, saying, “I’ll never accept that.” Here are a few thoughts about the biblical doctrines non-believers find acceptable and the doctrines they find reprehensible.

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Occasionally I will hear people criticize others in a Bible study for saying things like, “I think this passage means…” I’ve even been criticized for saying, “I think…” in sermons. The critics say, “It doesn’t matter what you think, it only matters what the passage says.” But the words, “I think…” actually play a very important role in discussions about the Bible. So here are some reasons to keep saying, “I think…” when studying the Bible.

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There are many people with an unhealthy view of God. Some people believe God is an angry tyrant with unreasonable expectations for mankind, ready to strike people dead at any moment. They believe His primary characteristics are wrath and fury. While it is sad people feel this way, it is equally heartbreaking that others believe the God of the Bible has no rules or expectations for mankind and will punish no one. We must have a balanced and biblical understanding of God’s character.

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We have a tendency to think of Christianity in very individualistic ways, “If I want to be a Christian, that is between me and God; and if I don’t want to be a Christian, that is between me and God.” But the truth is, your decision to follow Jesus – or not follow Jesus – will affect far more than your own eternal life. Your decision could bless – or devastate – your descendants for countless generations.

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