Impact Church

Passionately serving God and His people

Category: November 2014 Devotion

God Sets the Solitary in Families

“God sets the solitary in families….” Psalms 68:6

There is an increasing societal trend toward individualism.  In many ways, this cultural influence toward privatization leads to loneliness and indifferent associations. But God has always had a better plan. Throughout all of scripture, we see God bringing His work of salvation in and through communities and households. God has called us not only to be individuals who believe in Him but a Kingdom He oversees and a family that belongs to Him. He is our God and we are His people (Exodus 6:7). He has strategically formed and placed us into a body and invites us to live, worship, serve and grow in the context of community.

One of the most unique elements of Christianity is that we have a God who is both infinite and intimate. We do not have a distant, impersonal God. He is relational and welcomes us to be the same; with Him and with others. However, it is simpler sometimes to avoid deep fellowship in favor of a more privatized faith. God has called us to more! He has called us to experience Him in community, knowing that we are hard-wired relational beings desiring support and input, acceptance and belonging. Not only do we need others but others need us.

Graciously, God provided the structure of the local church as the primary avenue for Christian fellowship.  In scripture, a commitment to Christ also includes a commitment to a visible community: Read the rest of this entry »

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Season’s Greetings

To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:  Eccles 3:1

Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations: That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honor and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ: 1Peter 1: 6,7

The warm soothing rays of sunshine at the end of a fall afternoon meet quietly with evening’s incoming cold. Skin that was tantalizingly warmed under a fall sun has perceived also the chill, portending the night’s precipitous temperature drop. Memories of that fall day’s blown leaves and thrown footballs collide with winter’s thoughts of soups, coats and fireplaces. Even before nightfall, the evening declares there’ll be a shift of atmospheres. Change is in the air, inevitable and undeniable.

Likewise the longer daylight of spring speaks to winter’s harsh reality of snow and cold. Though months of freezing temps have come, the reality of an early spring midday sun foretells of warmer days and peeking buttercups! The long nights of TV watching and endless card games have transitioned to flower planting, spring cleaning and baseball! Warmer days fill agendas with productive activities and nights are reserved for tomorrow’s anticipated business. Change is possible, and likely, when seasons become our needed insight and motivation!

So should there not also be seasonal indicators to spiritual transitions, periods of time where Grace seeks to upstage old mind sets and practices? And are there not also seasons of temptations and fiery moments intended by Satan to destabilize and bring disillusion? Read the rest of this entry »

Do Believers Have to Struggle with Sin?

What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound? God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein? Romans 6:1-2 

In the 2,000-year history of the Church, nothing has divided the Body of Christ more than her views of sin. Whether defined as “an act of disobedience to divine law,” “missing the mark” or simple “lawlessness,” that little three-letter word has spawned a deluge of denominational distinctions and has created chaos and confusion for centuries.

Even today, nearly two millennia after Christ’s death and resurrection atoned for our sinful nature inherited when Adam and Eve fell in the Garden of Eden, the Church at large continues to give emphasis and breathe life into a defeated foe. That’s right,…sin has no power or authority in a born-again believer’s life! Consider the Apostle Paul’s question in Romans 6:2… “How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer therein?”

Thank God for TableTalk on Wednesday evenings at Impact Church Greensboro! For the last several weeks, we have opened Paul’s life-changing epistle and studied it section-by-section, verse-by-verse, acknowledging that all the world stands guilty before a holy God. Condemned by sin and its ugly nature, that is, UNTIL we accept and identify with the once-for-all sacrificial death of the sinless Son of God, Jesus Christ, who bore our just punishment on the cross of Calvary!

Once we repent and believe the Gospel, we are supernaturally reborn Read the rest of this entry »

Grace Seen By Contrastive Amplification

Romans 5

God’s word reveals that God has loved us in the most contrastive ways. Romans 5 is one of the strongest examples of this contrast. Please take the time to review the summaries and examples of the contrasts between what Adam and sin produced and what Jesus and His act of righteousness produced for us.

Having peace with God (5:1), we should no longer think negatively about bad times, instead, we should rejoice in our tribulations because it’s a process that changes us and bathes us in the love of God through the Holy Spirit (5:3-5).

While helpless, Christ died for the ungodly (5:6)

While we were sinners, Christ died for us (5:8)

“MUCH MORE THEN”, indicating God’s action exceeds our expectation, in addition to being justified by His blood; we are saved from His wrath (5:9).

While enemies we were reconciled to God but even MORE THAN THAT, we shall be saved by His life (5:10).

By Adam’s transgression the many died, “MUCH MORE did the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, ABOUND to the many” (5:15).

In Adam, one sin resulted in judgment, which produced condemnation, but justification is the result of the free gift, which covered many transgressions (5:16). Read the rest of this entry »