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Bible Study

John Bible Study, Day 34: Jesus’s Kingdom

Today’s passage: John 18:28–40 Focus verse: “My kingdom is not of this world.” (John 18:36) Jesus talks often about his kingdom. John, along with Mark and Luke, uses the phrase kingdom of God, while Matthew prefers the kingdom of heaven. The two phrases mean the same thing. For the sake of simplicity, we’ll use kingdom […]

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Christian Living

Seek First the Kingdom of God

Jesus Focused on the Kingdom of God, Not Church Jesus talked about the kingdom of God, but we made a church instead. What if he never intended us to form a church? After all, Jesus did tell his followers to “seek first the kingdom of God,” (Matthew 6:33, ESV). Let’s look at where else the […]

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Christian Living

Who Goes to Your Church?

The Number of First-Time Church Attendees Says Much about Your Congregation Consider the people who go to your church. They fall into three categories. The first group are those who came to your church from another church. The second constituency consists of people who’ve gone there their entire life. The final type are first-time church […]

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Christian Living

Who Says We Should Give 10 Percent to the Local Church?

Fundamentalist preachers twist what the Bible says and misapply it for their own benefit I was taught to give 10 percent of my money to church. I’ve heard many evangelical preachers assert that their followers had to give 10 percent to the local church. It was a tithe, an obligation. You could, of course, give […]

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Christian Living

Do You Go to a Missional Church? Are You Missional?

Make Sure That What You Do Advances the Kingdom of God Many people talk about being a missional church (and a missional follower of Jesus). This is an ideal goal, yet people have different understandings about what it means to be missional. Before giving a holistic definition of this often-misunderstood word, let’s first look what […]

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Bible Insights

Do You Think Like an Exile? Do You Act Like a Foreigner?

If You Are a Citizen of the Kingdom of God, Then You Live Here as an Alien Peter writes his first letter to Christians scattered about in pagan cities. He first calls them exiles (1 Peter 1:1). He also refers to them as foreigners (1 Peter 2:11). Though foreigner is accurate, I prefer the label […]

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Christian Living

Jesus Talked about the Kingdom of God and We Made a Church

What if Jesus Never Intended His Followers to Form a Church as we Know it Today? I looked at where the Bible talks about the kingdom of God and where it talks about church. What I learned is shocking. Jesus teaches about the kingdom of God, not church. These are New Testament Considerations Both the […]

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Bible Insights

The Kingdom of Heaven or the Kingdom of God?

Kingdom of Heaven versus Kingdom of God The phrase “the Kingdom of God” is synonymous with “the Kingdom of Heaven.” Some writers in the Bible simply prefer one over the other; it is not meant to designate two different concepts or kingdoms.  (Mark and Luke used “Kingdom of God,” whereas Matthew used “Kingdom of heaven.”) […]

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Christian Living

What is the Kingdom of God?

Eternal Life Begins Today (Not When We Die) Jesus often talks about the kingdom of God (the kingdom of heaven). He talks about how close the kingdom of God is, saying that it’s near and even that it’s here. How do we understand this immediacy of the kingdom of God in our life today? Is […]

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Christian Living

How to Discover Your Spiritual Gifts

God Gives Us Special Abilities to Advance His Kingdom The topic of spiritual gifts confuses many people and perplexes others. It’s easy to understand a physical present, something we can put in a box, wrap, and put a bow on. Giving tangible objects as gifts is easy to comprehend—and to receive. The disconnect comes as […]