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I Will Not Go Out Free

God's ways seem like paradoxes to the human mind. He says, To live, you must die. To find your life, you must lose it. To become strong, you must first become weak.

One of the greatest paradoxes of all is this — to be truly free you must become bound. To gain the greatest liberty in God one must give up all rights and become a lifelong bondservant to the Lord Jesus Christ. There is a glorious love–slavery that leads to the highest form of freedom and liberty. It is a voluntary surrender born out of love and affection, causing one to consider servitude even greater than sonship.

The Liberated Life

I stood in the lobby of a hotel recently, watching singles file one by one into a huge banquet hall. The sign outside the hall read: Creative Singles' Party. It was a Sunday evening, supposedly the most depressing day for lonely people.

Suicide

The Holy Spirit has been prompting me to speak out about suicide. At first, I rebelled against preaching about such a morbid subject, but there was no way I could shake off the urgency to warn young people about the horror of self-destruction. Consequently, for the past few weeks I have been preaching about suicide in all our city-wide crusades.

Clear the Stage

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As we begin 2017, I believe it would bring great pleasure to the heart of God if we would fall to our knees and ask him what he would desire to see done differently in our church and our own lives.

The Last Adam

Finding Our Victory in Jesus’ Work for Us

“And so it is written, ‘The first man Adam became a living being.’ The last Adam became a life-giving spirit. However, the spiritual is not first, but the natural, and afterward the spiritual. The first man was of the earth, made of dust; the second Man is the Lord from heaven” (1 Corinthians 15:45-47, NKJV).

The Cure for Confusion

We all know what it’s like to be confused. And for those who follow Jesus, confusion can be very bewildering. We’re taught that our lives are to be guided by the Lord’s clear voice, through his Word and the indwelling presence of his Holy Spirit. So when confusion sets in we begin to wonder about God’s guidance in our lives.

Crazy Faith

Do you sense God is about to unleash something tremendous in your life? Has he spoken to your heart, “I have prepared something special for you. You’re about to enter a walk with me you’ve never known before”? Maybe your life has already been greatly blessed by God. Now the Holy Spirit is saying his longstanding promise is about to come into full fruition—and that it will amaze you.

If this describes your life right now, I can tell you with the authority of Scripture: Get ready to examine your heart.

Living in the Perfect Will of God

We Christians struggle so hard to find the will of God for our lives. Once we believe we’ve found his will for us, we labor hard to see it fulfilled in our lives.

I am convinced this struggle to find God’s will — to live in it, walk in it and see its fulfillment — can become our greatest battle. And the battle intensifies whenever we find ourselves in dire circumstances.

The Gospel of the Outcasts

Luke 15 has been called “The Gospel of the Outcasts.” For centuries this chapter has been seen as God’s Word to those who have fallen. It is a message for all who have wandered from Christ, who once were found but now are lost, who may be bound by a besetting sin.

What exactly is an outcast? In Luke 15, the outcasts are those who have been rejected as failures by society and by the church. They include those who feel rejected by God because of a moral failure.