• The Authority of the Church

    1 Corinthians 5

    Today’s passage is a proof text for question and answer 85 of the Heidelberg Catechism, which deals with how church discipline opens and shuts the door to the kingdom of heaven. Excommunication shuts the door by declaring that the excommunicated ...Read More

  • Wild Olive Branches

    Romans 11:16-18

    As fallen human beings, we are constantly tempted to believe that the reason we are Christians is that we are somehow better than others. Even within the church, we are tempted to believe that we have a monopoly on God’s ...Read More

  • Sin’s Perversion of the Law

    Romans 7:8-11

    In Romans 7:11, Paul says that sin uses the law to deceive fallen people. There are many ways that this can happen, but one of them is that sin often takes things that the law says are good in themselves ...Read More

  • God’s Promise to Abraham

    Genesis 15

    Obviously, God cannot cease being God. Thus, there is no chance that the Lord will fail to keep His promise to Abraham. As we look at history, we see that our Creator is keeping His pledge to the patriarch. Abraham ...Read More

  • Paul’s Ministry at Philippi

    Acts 16:11-40

    Paul never asked the civil magistrate to sponsor the Gospel. Following Jesus’ advice, the disciples avoided conflict with the “powers that be.” When calling on the magistrate was pointedly useful to the Gospel, however, the apostles did so. Here Paul ...Read More

  • The Law and the Promises

    Galatians 3:21–22

    Christians are no longer under the curse of the Law (Gal. 3:13–14). Yet until we are glorified, the presence of sin within us clouds our minds, preventing us on many occasions from seeing the truth about our own deeds and ...Read More

  • The Oaks of Mamre

    Genesis 18:1–5

    Matthew Henry comments: “It becomes those whom God has blessed with plenty to be liberal and open-hearted.” The Lord does not bless people so that they will keep that blessing all for themselves. Instead, He wants us to share our ...Read More

  • God is in the Details

    Matthew 10:28–31

    The control God exercises over everything that ever happens demonstrates that there is some significance to all that we do. In turn, this means that we should give thought to our actions and how we spend our time. The Lord ...Read More

  • Living in the Spirit

    Galatians 5:24–26

    Martin Luther offers the following application: God is no respecter of persons, and since all believers serve Him by the same faith with the same Spirit, the layman who faithfully uses the gift the Lord has given him pleases God ...Read More

  • Appearances Can Be Deceiving

    Colossians 2:23

    God’s law is good, but in itself cannot put the flesh to death because the problem is not simply that we do not obey the Lord but that we do not want to obey Him apart from the grace He ...Read More