• Topic > Christian Ministry & the Church > Unity of Believers >

    The message of Philemon

    Odds are your Bible never just flips open to the book of Philemon. It’s only one chapter and at most a page long. But as we’ll see today on Discover the Word, it’s a little book that packs a big message. Join us on Discover the Word to learn more about the compelling story behind […]

    The Family Name

    A young man had been fleeing from the law, and his concerned father tried desperately to reach him. When his son finally called from a city far away, the dad convinced him to turn himself in and even took a flight to retrieve him. As he later described the trip to friends, the loving father said with unmistakable warmth, “He’s my son!”

    Beautiful Unity

    Seeing three large predatory animals cuddle and play together is extremely unusual. Yet this is precisely what happens daily in an animal sanctuary in Georgia. In 2001, after months of neglect and abuse, a lion, a Bengal tiger, and a black bear were rescued by Noah’s Ark Animal Sanctuary. “We could have separated them,” said the assistant director. “But since they came as a kind of family, we decided to keep them together.” The trio had found comfort in each other during their time of mistreatment, and, despite their differences, they live peacefully together.

    Unity is a beautiful thing. But the…

    All Together Now

    While Nicholas Taylor was boarding a train in Perth, Australia, his leg became wedged in the gap between the platform and a commuter car. When safety officials could not free him, they coordinated the efforts of nearly 50 passengers who lined up and, on the count of three, pushed against the train. Working in unison, they shifted the weight just enough to free Taylor’s leg.

                The apostle Paul recognized the power of Christians working together in many of his letters to the early churches. He urged the Roman believers to accept each other the way Christ had accepted them and…

    US Election Results: Letter to All American Christian Voters

    So now, the election is over. ______________ won and you could be experiencing a variety of emotions. Maybe you’re overjoyed because your candidate is now the President of the United States. Or maybe you’re overwhelmed with anger and fear, believing that we are in what you would call a “nightmare” situation. Or maybe you’re a little like me—wondering how we even got to this point in the first place.

    United in Christ

    When we come across a list of names in the Bible, we might be tempted to skip over it. But we can find treasures there, such as in the list of the twelve apostles whom Jesus called to serve in His name. Many are familiar—Simon whom Jesus called Peter, the rock. Brothers James and John, fishermen. Judas Iscariot, the betrayer. But we could easily overlook that Matthew the tax collector and Simon the Zealot must once have been archrivals.

    Matthew collected taxes for Rome, and therefore, in the eyes of his fellow Jews, collaborated with the enemy. Tax collectors were despised…

    Dirty Laundry

    The phrase “dirty laundry” could refer to the bag a college student brings home, or it may mean a person’s private business—personal matters not to be discussed publicly. We can safely say that it’s not Christlike to air that kind of dirty laundry.

    The “Go” of Reconciliation

    If you . . . remember that your brother has something against you . . . —Matthew 5:23

    This verse says, “If you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you . . . .” …

    The “Go” of Relationship

    Whoever compels you to go one mile, go with him two—Matthew 5:41 

    Our Lord’s teaching can be summed up in this: the relationship that He demands for us is an impossible one unless He has done a …

    You’re Needed

    In 2015, Derrick Rose, an All-Star guard in the National Basketball Association (NBA), faced another surgery after he tore the medial meniscus in his right knee for the second time in 15 months. The meniscus is a relatively obscure part of the human body, yet this essential piece of cartilage not only threatened Rose’s career, but also hurt his team’s chances of a championship and dashed the hopes of the city where he plays. What a large impact from such a small thing!

    Helping Each Other

    “The body of Christ” is a mysterious phrase used more than 30 times in the New Testament. The apostle Paul especially settled on that phrase as an image of the church. After Jesus ascended to heaven, He turned over His mission to flawed and bumbling men and women. He assumed the role of head of the church, leaving the tasks of arms, legs, ears, eyes, and voice to the erratic disciples—and to you and me.

    Jesus’ decision to operate as the invisible head of a large body with many parts means that He often relies on us to help one another…

    Loving Beyond Borders

    I first experienced the beauty of the global body of Christ when I traveled from South Africa to Malaysia as a teacher. In that country, with its varying religions and cultural beliefs, I found a spiritual home away from home. From the moment I stepped into the little church down the road, I was warmly welcomed and treated like family. Thousands of kilometers away from where I grew up, I met people with the same spirit and the same love for Jesus.

    Prejudice by Association

    The sound of her name made me recoil. I knew the strong testimony of the well-known speaker and had no justifiable reason to avoid her podcasts. My disgust had nothing to do with her or the worthy cause she represented. I’d been hurt by someone who idolized her, so my prejudice came because of her association with that individual.

    A Hint of Heaven

    The world-class botanical garden across the street from our church was the setting for an all-church community gathering. As I walked around the gardens greeting people I have known for years, catching up with those I hadn’t seen recently, and enjoying the beautiful surroundings cared for by people who know and love plants, I realized that the evening was rich with symbols of how the church is supposed to function—a little hint of heaven on earth.

    A garden is a place where each plant is placed in an environment in which it will thrive. Gardeners prepare the soil, protect the plants…

    People Power

    A man was boarding a train in Perth, Australia, when he slipped and his leg got caught in the gap between the train carriage and the station platform. Dozens of passengers quickly came to his rescue. They used their sheer might to tilt the train away from the platform, and the trapped man was freed! The train service’s spokesman, David Hynes, said in an interview, “Everyone sort of pitched in. It was people power that saved someone from possibly quite serious injury.”

    In Ephesians 4, we read that people power is God’s plan for building up His family. He has given…


    September 2019: Christian Living

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