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Characteristics of God - God is Love

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“And we have known and believed the love that God has for us. God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.” (John 4:16)

What an incredible truth: God is Love! It is not just something He does, but actually describes who He is! If we grasp this truth, it will have a transforming effect on our life! Our belief and concept of who God is and what He is like directly determines what our spiritual walk is like – not just what we do, but especially how and why we do what we do – the motivation for our actions toward God. How important then that our concept of God is based not on our imagination, but entirely on the truth of God’s word! If someone believes that God is a distant Being that cares little about us on a personal level, that will surely be evident in the lack of a relationship with God. Likewise, if someone believes God is a harsh and critical Ruler, just waiting for us to make a mistake, that person’s response to God will be actions motivated only by fear, rather than love or gratitude. However, if through God’s Spirit we understand that God is love, and that all He does is done in love, our response will be to love Him in return – to draw nearer to Him, to obey Him, to honor and worship Him.

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My Soul Thirsts for God

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“As the deer pants for the water brooks, So pants my soul for You, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God?” Psalm 42:1-2

Who among us would sit down and begin writing words like these? We ask ourselves what must have motivated the writer of these words to pour out the thoughts of his heart so graphically. What situation prompted such a hungering for God? Was this man in desperate straights? Verse 3 gives us some insight: “My tears have been my food day and night ...” He was in the throes of some great trial. He was fasting and praying. Obviously he was waiting for God’s help in a certain situation, and it seemed that God wasn’t answering. He must have testified that he was trusting in God for help, because people around him were taunting him scornfully: “Where is your God?” Again and again he responded by pouring out his pain and heartache to God, taking hold of his heavenly Helper by faith.

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Did Jesus Truly Rise from the Dead?

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According to the Bible, our redemption, forgiveness of sin, and salvation hinge on the resurrection of Jesus Christ. If Jesus had died on the cross but remained in the grave, His death would have no redeeming power. The apostle Paul clearly states in 1 Corinthians 15:17: "And if Christ is not risen, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins!"

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Editorial

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The increasingly hectic lifestyle of our Western culture has us reaching for moments of stress relief and decompression. We look for a temporary change, for a time of rest.

Nestled in the book of Acts is a seemingly insignificant event in the life of the apostle Paul. Luke tells of how the evangelistic team left Philippi after the Easter celebration and took the five-day sea voyage to Troas. They spent seven days here, days that surely exhausted the physical and emotional reserves of these ardent laborers in God’s vineyard. On the final day, before an audience that was eager to eke out every morsel of spiritual food from the apostles, Paul preached until midnight, and then encouraged the faithful until dawn. The next day, the team boarded a ship headed to Assos. But Paul did not join them for the sea journey. Why not?

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Introduction to the Book of Revelation

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“The Revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave Him to show His servants—things which must shortly take place.” (Revelation 1:1a)

Many readers of the Scripture have come to the Book of Revelation and wondered if it was a locked treasure chest. They sensed that it contained something very valuable, but opening “the chest” seemed difficult if not impossible. However, when we apply diligent and prayerful study to this last book of the Bible, we will most certainly be granted access to its rich blessings.

While reading the first chapter of the Revelation, I was inspired to devote more attention to this book. The first verse clearly states that the book was written to give “His servants” more knowledge. This book is intended for us as believers. The third verse tells us, “Blessed is he who reads and those who hear.” We are encouraged to read and listen. Therefore, the book of Revelation should also be preached to us.

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