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Author: Mark Tiefel

Not Your God #3: Control

Not Your God #3: Control

Abstract: When we think of idolatry we often imagine scenes of a carved image from the Old Testament or a false religion today. Idolatry seems like an easy sin to detect and stay clear of. But, there is another side of idolatry that is more subtle. Luther’s Small Catechism calls this “secret idolatry.” This doesn’t mean you are bowing down to an idol in the privacy of your home. Rather, it means that something which is not typically looked at…

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The Posterity

The Posterity

Psalm 22:30-31 Posterity will serve him; future generations will be told about the Lord. 31 They will proclaim his righteousness, declaring to a people yet unborn: He has done it! (NIV) You might be just as surprised as me. That’s the NIV up there. It uses the word “posterity,” which is strange for a modern translation. Perhaps it’s an indication that a better word really doesn’t exist. What does posterity mean? It’s one of those words that has no doubt…

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Not Your God #2: Greed

Not Your God #2: Greed

When we think of idolatry we often imagine it to be an easy sin to detect and stay clear of. Thoughts of carved images and statues from the Old Testament come to our minds and certainly no good Christian succumbs to such things. But, there is another side of idolatry that is more subtle. It’s the type of idolatry that takes something good and makes it more important than God. This idolatry doesn’t involve formal worship or a confession of…

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Happy 500th!

Happy 500th!

Today is Reformation Day and, as I’m sure you know by now, not just any ordinary Reformation anniversary. It’s 500 years from the day that Martin Luther nailed the 95 Theses on the church door in Wittenberg, Germany. Reformation Day is rightly one of the high festivals in the Lutheran Church. It was such an important movement to restoring the unconditional gospel of Jesus Christ that for many years was shrouded in mysticism and ritualism. But, anyone with just a…

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Not Your God #1: Freedom

Not Your God #1: Freedom

When we think of idolatry we often imagine it to be an easy sin to detect and stay clear of. Thoughts of carved images and statues from the Old Testament come to our minds and certainly no good Christian succumbs to such things. But, there is another side of idolatry that is more subtle. It’s the type of idolatry that takes something good and makes it more important than God. This idolatry doesn’t involve formal worship or a confession of…

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Hurricane Harvey and Nashville

Hurricane Harvey and Nashville

2 Timothy 4:2 Preach the word! Be ready in season and out of season. Convince, rebuke, exhort, with all longsuffering and teaching. If you reading this you have no doubt already heard about the devastating landfall of Hurricane Harvey in the Houston, TX area. Thankfully, as of now the rains have ceased and numerous rescues are being made. People are also coming together by donating time and money to the cause of helping the survivors. Such a time of destruction…

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Avoiding the One-Sunday Stand

Avoiding the One-Sunday Stand

Time after time we see truths from God’s Word which follow the pattern of marriage. Inherent to God’s institution of marriage are certain qualities: commitment, love, forgiveness, and other virtues. It’s no wonder that God would so often use marriage as an example of our relationship with Him by faith. The clearest example of that connection is from Ephesians 5 where God compares the relationship between husband and wife to that of Christ and the Church. So, essentially, God is…

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Bible Study: Proverbs

Bible Study: Proverbs

In our Bible Study, Pastors Rob Sauers and Nathanael Mayhew discuss the book of Proverbs. Proverbs is one of the poetic books of the Old Testament. Hebrew poetry does not consist of rhyme and meter as English poetry does, but it uses parallelism as a tool to lead us into God’s truth. Proverbs is an example of wisdom literature and is similar to other wisdom literature found in the ancient world and even today. Even without a special revelation from…

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Tempered Independence

Tempered Independence

Proverbs 15:20 A wise son brings joy to his father, but a foolish man despises his mother. This verse from today’s devotion caught my eye. I write especially for teenage readers, but it really applies to all. Remember that God still cares about how you treat your parents. So often excuses are given because of immaturity or naive oversight. But, in reality, there’s nothing complicated about the intent of the fourth commandment. One of the subversive, under-the-radar, dangers we face in our…

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Be a Role Model

Be a Role Model

Although it’s been over ten years since I passed my driving test and received my driver’s license, I vividly remember one piece of advice from the instructor. He said, “Always be sure to use your turn signal, even if you don’t see any other cars. You never know who is watching.” This point of emphasis has probably stuck with me because I’ve been reminded of it often. Sometimes I won’t use my turn signal because I’m trying to dart out through the…

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