Some of my favorite moments of each day occur around 7:30pm. This is the time I typically have devotions with my five-year-old twins using a storybook Bible.   Up until they were three, my wife and I used The Big Picture Story Bible with our kids. This is a fantastic storybook Bible. In fact, if you want a quick overview of the entire Bible and how all the major stories fit together as one, it’s worth your time to read as an adult. (You can do so in about an hour.)   However, as my kids’ attention spans have expanded, I’ve struggled to find aRead More →

  One of the more frequent commands in Scripture is short and to-the-point.   It’s a two-word instruction found 28 times in the New Testament. The phase is uttered by Jesus, by the Holy Spirit, and by the apostles. It can also be found in all four gospels, in several of the epistles, and in the book of Revelation. What’s this pervasive Bible phrase? It’s the simple command to, “Get up!”   Almost all of the Biblical commands to get up require a person to move in order to experience the mercy and grace of God. Consider these examples:   The paralytic had to riseRead More →

      Cheer for His Children – Fathers breed godly confidence in their kids by being their biggest supporters, not just on the playing field, but wherever God calls young hearts to bring Him glory.   Establish a repertoire of at least five character voices for story-time.   Discipline in Love – Faithful dads aren’t lazy when it comes to engaging sin in their children’s lives. Dads are prepared to stand up to the real enemy (even when it temporarily makes them out to be the “bad guy” in their children’s eyes).   Be willing to get his hands dirty. (Drool, runny noses, diapers…yeah,Read More →

  Luke 17:7-10 contains one of the shortest and most unfamiliar parables in all of Scripture.   It’s one of those passages that doesn’t make it’s way onto Christian T-Shirts and coffee mugs. The likely reason is because in this passage, Jesus calls people (even what appear to be faithful people) “good-for-nothing.”   Since it’s only three verses long, take a moment to read Jesus’ words in context:   “Which one of you having a slave tending sheep or plowing will say to him when he comes in from the field, ‘Come at once and sit down to eat’? Instead, will he not tell him, ‘PrepareRead More →

    For 15 years, I sold Bibles for a living. Well other things too, but as a Christian bookstore manager, the bulk of my attention was on getting the Word of God into people’s lives.   A sampling of our Bible department revealed no less than 16 different Bible versions, with many more just a click away from being ordered. A few Bible acronyms you might recognize are: NIV, HCSB, KJV, NKJV, ICB, NASB, ESV, NIRV, NLT, and NRSV. Given this list, it’s no wonder why so many people are asking the question, “What’s the best Bible version?”.   What Are We Asking For?Read More →

  I just did the math. In the last 38 days, the American flag has flown at half mast a total of 15 times.   15 out of 38 days. This means in the last month, your kids had a 40% chance of seeing a flag out their car window that represented human lives killed in domestic and international attacks. Sadly, this has become their new normal.   Here’s the other new normal for our kids: #PrayforBatonRouge #PrayForNice #PrayForDallas #PrayForOrlando #PrayForSanBernardino #PrayForParis   There are a hundred other hashtags we could add to this list. You and I know the drill too well…   ARead More →

Currently, a group of men at my church are reading and discussing the gospel of John. I’ll be honest; other than Psalms and Job, John’s gospel is one of hardest books in Scripture for me to process.   In preparation for our discussion, I was reading John chapter 5. Here, Jesus makes a startling claim. He says, “The Father judges no one but has given all judgment to the Son” (5:22). Wait a second. The Father judges no one? What about passages like 1 Peter 1:17 that says the Father does in fact judge? Is this a contradiction in Scripture?   While these verses mayRead More →

Several years ago, I took a few hours on a Sunday afternoon to write an article for my church’s blog. I titled it, “God is Not a God of Second Chances.” It focused on the good news of the imputed righteousness of Christ.   Little did I know at the time, that post would play a catalytic role in what would become a part-time writing career. Last week, I had the honor of writing a version of that same message for The Gospel Coalition. Here’s a snippet of the post. You can read the rest on TCG’s website here.   In our polarized culture it’s rareRead More →

“If after 90 days of giving, you aren’t satisfied that the Lord has blessed you in return, get your money back…no questions asked.”   While it may sound like a commercial pitch, wording like this has recently been appearing on church websites across the country. These churches are seeking to encourage generosity among their congregations by offering a money-back guarantee on tithing. Proponents of this method cite Malachi 3:11 as their proof text. Here, God asks the Israelites to test His provision by faithfully offering their tithe.   This practice of offering a refund policy on tithes has been both lauded for its ingenuity andRead More →

My five-year-old son loves video games.   While I want him to enjoy his games to the glory of God, his mom and I have observed these games becoming idols in some ways. As of late, my son has been prone to “not hear” his mother while playing. He’ll also harbor a sinful attitude when the day’s errands keep him from the screen for an extended period of time.   In our attempts to shepherd, I felt a calling to write my son a simple book about what idol worship can look like to a kid (or an adult for that matter). While I pulledRead More →