Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Consider A Few Attributes Of God

Getting To Know God In Light Of Scripture
(Written by Kevin a. Hall    01.19.2017)

How can an understanding of God’s attributes help us to know God better?
I think of this one in relation to my marriage – I had better make every effort to know my wife or there’s a price to pay. Thankfully we are at a place where we often say the same things (together). I often mimic her words and she does mine. So it is with my relationship with God – I must seek to understand Him more and more to fully experience Him and His blessings. And he encourages us to imitate Him. Thankfully, we can learn about His nature through Scripture. We know that He is personal, indestructible, self-sufficient, immortal and because of this I am so happy “Those who trust in him do not trust in vain” (69).

 It is essential that we know Him so we can love, worship and confidently serve Him. Again, it is essential that we understand our God so that we can be in alignment with His will
Just imagine serving a real God who is creator of everything –
  • Infinite (unrestricted, unbounded with His attributes the same – unlimited love, unlimited mercy, unlimited grace)
  • Righteous (Consistent and true to Himself – always faithful, so we can trust that He will respond)
  • Immutable (unchanging in His essence and character – He acts, is acted upon and reacts [79])
Many other attributes but you get the point… He is a living, breathing, holy, sovereign and good God. This is the only God I wish to serve.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

How Is The Christian To Live In This World?

KINGDOM CHARACTER 
(Written by Kevin A. Hall   07.2017)

In search of instructions for my walk with Christ, I came across these powerful texts during Bible study. I had a few questions going into this search of scripture: How should I live in a world gone absolutely crazy? What will happen to me if I live like the world? Is the Christian walk supposed to be easy? What of the trend these days to deny what Scripture says about sin by placing more tolerant labels on our actions? Does God even care about my lifestyle?

 In light of all these questions…How should I walk?
The lure of sin is ever so close since globalization (the world at our fingertips and voice commands) and we can expect the pressure to live a compromised life to increase. Take courage my friend, God has a rhema word for us:

Monday, July 17, 2017

Believing God For A Change - The Account Of A Blind Man And His Friend

KINGDOM CULTURE:  The Healing of Blind Bartimaeus And His Friend
(Written by Kevin A. Hall   08.2016)

CAN GOD GIVE YOU SIGHT? CAN GOD PROVIDE AN ANSWER FOR MY NEED?

The story of blind Bartimaeus is a moving account of personal faith. What do you do when all the odds are against you? What do you do when no one else can believe with you for your breakthrough? What do you do when no one else embraces your vision or your dream? If you are a leader, this can be very frustrating. Ever wondered “These people just can’t seem to get it”. Well my friend, Bartimaeus has walked in your shoe.
Some background on this story. The setting is the city of Jericho. Jericho is located fifteen miles north east of Jerusalem. It is one of the major stops on the trade route to Arabia. It was nearing the time of the Passover Feast. Countless of people would pass this way toward the city of Jerusalem. Imagine the hustle and bustle. Imagine Bartimaeus ramping up his efforts to ask for money.
This was his way of earning a living. In fact, he was not by himself. There was another blind man with him, so this was one of their spots along the trade route. Matthew mentions the other man in chapter 20. Bartimaeus was no doubt the more vocal of the two. Let’s look at their story from all the gospel accounts:

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Is There A Need Need For Organization In The Church?

Considerations for getting organized
(Written by Kevin A. Hall    04.2017)

There are some things that we take for granted when it comes to the operation of ministry. According to Getz there are 6 focus areas that church leadership can place an intentional effort in order to achieve their desired purpose and objectives - Evangelism, Edification, Leadership, Communication, Administration and Organization. In all these areas a few key questions should be asked to assess effectiveness: (1) How can biblical principles be translated into purpose? (2)  How can the goals, objectives and standards be formulated for the local church? As we make these assessments in all areas of the ministry, we cannot afford to allow ourselves to be in bondage to the culture and we definitely should not be separated from it. Every consideration we make should be done in light of scripture with the intent to build bridges.


As we consider the impact of culture, the church needs to look at her place within that culture. How does culture impact the worldview of its members? How does the church impact society? We need to provide outlets for the church to be incarnated into the society; adapting yet not compromising. This means ensuring our reach extends beyond the four walls to influence activities within the government, businesses, schools, the arts, our church programs and especially our homes.
Regarding Evangelism, we need to consider our role in contributing toward the Great Commission. Does the mission of the church extend into the local community and beyond? Is there an effort to encourage corporate witnessing? Is the church just a “Saving Station” or is it a “Place of Empowerment – A Bridge to the World”? How are we doing in reaching families, households and single individuals? Are we actively seeking to identify, develop and to deploy our members’ gifts? How about our New Convert Care – what happens after we have made converts? Is there a strategy in place to “disciple” our brothers and sisters?

Covenant Theology

 Covenant Theology
(Written by Kevin A. Hall  04.2017)

One thing is clear, the Lord made covenants with man throughout history. We can call them reminders of God’s gracious promises. The first time I notice the word being used is during the time of Noah where God declared “I will establish my Covenant with you, and you shall go into the ark – you, your sons, your wife, and your sons’ wives with you” … We call this the Noahic covenant. Ketcherside states that God has chosen to relate to man on the basis of covenants. 

In the case of the Nohaic covenant, we see the God – man stipulations: God sets the conditions; He gives the terms; He signs the covenant. 
This approach is repeated throughout human history in a series of other covenants -The Abrahamic, the Mosaic, the Davidic and the New Covenant.
The Mosaic covenant is called the First covenant. It is also called the Covenant of Law or the Mosaic Law. Deuteronomy 4:11-13 attests to that. There is enough evidence to support the argument that the Law is not simply the first 39 books of the Bible.  One example is reference to Jeremiah 31:31 which proves that the people had already broken the First Covenant and 31:32 which states that the first covenant was made when “God took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt.
The Law was considered faulty (Hebrews 8:7). We could not be justified by it (Galatians 3:10). The Law itself was not weak, but man was as he was, was not able to keep it perfectly (Romans 8:1-3). The Law itself could not give life, nor could it effect the forgiveness of sins (Hebrews 10:4).  Man was aware that he needed something more. Even though “he went away from the worship services having met its requirements, he was conscious that it could not fully meet the needs (Reese, 150). Therefore, the Lord sought a more excellent way. This was prophesied in Jeremiah 31:31-34. The benefits of this New Covenant would include (1) The Forgiveness of sins; (2) Direct and personal access to Almighty God; (3) Reconciliation – God makes the promise that He will be our God as we become His people; (4) The Ministry of the Indwelling Holy Spirit that will govern us from the inside. This is the source of our Christian Liberty.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

I Refuse To Be Like My Father! - King Hezekiah

Along The Way:  King Hezekiah - A Different Path
(Written by Kevin A. Hall     07.04.17)

To be or not to be like my father – That is the question Hezekiah must have asked himself many times. His father was King Ahaz, one of the most evil kings of Judah. Hezekiah must have been aware that his father sacrificed his brother to a heathen god. His father made sacrifices and burnt offering in high places “on the hills and under every green tree” (2 Kings 16:4). His father introduced pagan customs and made major changes to the house of God for his personal benefit. 

Under his father, “Judah’s religious system became shambles” (Nasb). His father was also weak; so was the high priest (Urijah) during his reign (2 Kings 16:16). The nation followed his father’s lead.
At some point, Hezekiah chose not to follow his earthy father’s example, but to embrace his heavenly father as his model for living. We too, can choose our own path. Hezekiah did not have the privilege of the indwelling Spirit, but he chose to follow God. We have God’s Spirit as guide if we submit.  

Monday, July 3, 2017

Pride Will Ruin Your Life! - King Uzziah

Along The Way: Pride Will Ruin Your Life!
 (Written By Kevin A. Hall   07.03.17)

“He was marvelously helped until he became strong”!
Imagine this statement being written on our tombstone. We ran well until… This story is repeated over and over in the human experience without fail, but should not be the story of our lives as children of God.   This statement was made of King Uzziah:
 He did right in the sight of the Lord according to all that his father Amaziah had done. He continued to seek God in the days of Zechariah, who had understanding through the vision of God; and as long as he sought the Lord, God prospered him (2 Chronicles. 26:15).

 He was 16 when he began to reign with his father King Amaziah, taking full control after his father’s death. His great dedication to God included a deep respect for and partnership with the prophet Zechariah. As long as he remained connected to God and His servant, he was blessed. There's an abiding principle here regarding one's relationship to the church.
Like Uzziah, believers can hold on to God’s promise – “I am the vine and you are the branches. The one who remains in Me, and I in him, will bear much fruit. For apart from Me you can do nothing” (John 15:5). We are blessed if we endure. However, blessings should never be defined by things or accomplishments. Uzziah was blessed but missed the mark – he became strong or very proud and corrupt. He achieved prosperity, influence, power, wealth and fame.