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Contending, not contentious

Probably one of the ugliest things in the world is a contentious Christian. We’ve all seen it. A face twisted into a snarl, with nostrils flaring. A voice raised, biting with sarcasm. Words handled like knives to slash and cut the opposition. And when the argument is finished, a parting dig laced with smug condescension.   […]

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Memorizing the Bible

The focus of this article is the value of memorizing the Bible. But to begin, I want to briefly defend the practice of memorization itself, since it is a discipline often despised today.  Memorization has largely fallen by the wayside in today’s society. We have outsourced our memory by using technology. For example, I don’t […]

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Appearance of Evil

Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. Abstain from all appearance of evil. And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit and soul and body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Thessalonians 5:21–23    Live in a manner worthy of […]

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Dangers of Secular Humanism

In the eyes of many, we live in a world absent of God, governed and directed by science and the moral relativity of individuals and their communities. This is the worldview of secular humanism, a prevalent “religion” we find in our society today. To fully understand what this term means, we must first define the […]

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How Do I Kill Remaining Sin?

How Do I Kill Remaining Sin?  By Geoff Thomas   Grand Rapids: Reformed Heritage Books, 2014  Reviewed by Julian Kennedy  This short booklet is necessary reading for every believer because it applies to all of us—and it’s a whole lot shorter than John Owen’s much longer book entitled The Mortification of Sin! Rev. Geoffrey Thomas, a […]

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Battle Language: Doctrine

In the military tent, the soldiers are given their briefing. Delivered in precise, technical, specific terminology, every word and detail are of the utmost importance. This is war, after all.   This picture is consistent with the biblical portrait of the church—a church called to take up arms “against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of […]

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God’s Warrior

Danny waved the stick in front of him. He was a warrior and fought huge armies of enemies. Stab. Slash. Whack. “Danny!” His mother called from the door. “Time to come in and practice your catechism.” Danny heaved a huge sigh and trudged to the house, dragging his stick behind him. “Do I have to? […]

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The Sword

James saw the sword locked behind a glass case. The blade was long and sharp. He tried to imagine how the sword might have been used in battle. Did a soldier hold it high and shout in victory? Did the blade ever clash against other enemy swords? Clink. James jumped. The museum tour guide had […]

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Becoming Soft

Depending on where you read this, chances are that you live in a wealthy place. Especially in America, you and I have an unthinkable amount of food, clothes, and technology. For the most part, we have the freedom to do whatever we desire, and may say what we want, when we want to. Strikingly, this […]

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Weariness (1) Words for the Weary

Psalm 69:3 “I am weary of my crying: my throat is dried: mine eyes fail while I wait for my God. They that hate me without a cause are more than the hairs of mine head: they that would destroy me, being mine enemies wrongfully, are mighty: then I restored that which I took not […]

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Confessing God, My Protection

We live in a dangerous world. There are those who would tempt the church and seek the blood of her people. Closer to home, we fight our sinful natures each day, constantly experiencing a battle between the new man of righteousness and the old man of sin. Satan prowls around looking for those whom he […]

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The Battle

Crash. Boom. “Fire!” The assault was fierce. I had never before seen such an enemy come upon us. They climbed over our carefully fortified walls like frenzied ants on a trail of honey. There was no place to run. But we didn’t want to. We would fight—fight to the end. The clash of swords was […]

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To the Guys: Let’s Wake Up

Why am I singling out only guys? As young men, we are being attacked by Satan every day, even though we don’t usually realize it. He wants to attack us when we’re young in our faith and still closely attached to the things of this world. He attacks slyly, and we would be foolish to […]

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Contending for the Life of Faith

What kind of life are you living? Are you living the Christian life? Can you say that? Can you say that before the face of God? Can you say that in all honesty before your own conscience? Do you want to live the Christian life? Is that really the desire of your heart? Do you pray to […]

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Antithesis (4)

“It’s a spiritual battle,” affirmed Father. Yes, I thought, it is a spiritual battle—not with flesh and blood. But what about the spiritual armor? You can put a helmet on your head and pick up a sword in your hand, but how do you put a spiritual helmet on and how do you pick up […]

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Antithesis (3)

Father reached for his Bible. He was going to explain to Sally and me what kind of armor we needed. I thought Sally was kind of young to be a soldier, but I was ready to be one! “Let’s see,” Father flipped through the pages, “here it is in Ephesians 6. The war is ‘not […]

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A Time of War – Antithesis (2)

“Antitha—. Antithi—. Antath—.” I just couldn’t get the word out. It felt like my mouth was full of marbles. “Antithesis,” Father helped. “Antithesis means that we are opposed to the world of sin and the devil. We must fight and strive to live holy, godly lives. ‘The good that I would I do not, but […]

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A Time of War – Antithesis (1)

The night was warm and the air was still, so that when an eerie shriek came from the backyard, we could hear it in the house very clearly. “What was that?” said my little sister. She was visibly shaken by the horrible sound. So was I, though I wouldn’t admit it. But before Father could […]

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A Time of War

Michael knew he was supposed to help stack wood outside by the end of the afternoon, but he was almost finished reading a very interesting book. He just couldn’t put it down! Yet when he did finish it, he was almost sorry he had read the book at all. Father walked into the room. “Why […]

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Contending for the Faith

We as Protestant Reformed young people have a blessed heritage. Will we sell our birthright as Esau for a mess of Pottage? Ask yourself how much your birthright as a child of God and inheritance as an heir of the promise mean to you. Are you willing to content for the faith once delivered to […]

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The Enemy (2)

This article was first presented as a speech by Rev. Gise Van Baren at the 1998 Young Adult’s Spring Retreat in Loveland, Colorado. The retreat occurs in March of every year. Young adults of high school age and older are encouraged to attend.   The second battle plan of Satan can be found in connection […]

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The Enemy (1)

This article was first presented as a speech by Rev. Gise Van Baren at the 1998 Young Adult’s Spring Retreat in Loveland, CO. The retreat occurs in March of every year. Young adults of high school age and older are encouraged to attend.   I come as a messenger with a very serious message. That […]

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The Christian Soldier

The theme text for this convention has been announced as II Tim. 2:3-5: “Thou therefore endure hardship, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. No man that warreth entangleth himself with the affairs of this life; that he may please him who hath chosen him to be a soldier. And if a man also strive […]

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Christmas Brought Division

“Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.” -Matthew 10:34 The essence of Christmas is Immanuel. Christmas as an historical event can, of course, never be repeated. Mary and Joseph went to the city of David nearly two thousand years ago and there […]

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