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John Shirk

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Q and A-Sovereignty of God

john : January 20, 2016 5:23 pm : John Shirk, Staff Pages

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Q and A explores the question, “What does the Sovereignty of God mean?”

One definition of the word “Sovereign” is “possessing supreme or ultimate power.”

The LORD identified Himself to Abraham as “God Almighty”. One of the implications of His supreme power is that nothing is too difficult for Him. He can do anything that is consistent with His character.

God’s Sovereignty can be a very comforting truth when our world seems to be falling apart. God’s Sovereignty assures us that He is on the throne and He is in control. He is working through history and the circumstances of our lives to reveal His glory. He is able to take what is meant for evil and overcome it with good. He is able to take our tears of sorrow and enable us to be a source of comfort for others. God’s Sovereignty teaches us that when we do not perceive His hand at work, we can still trust Him with our soul.

Psalm 46:10 is a picture of God’s Sovereignty: Be still and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations. I will be exalted in the earth.”

In 2016, God is still on the throne in the Year of Exploration.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Reason To Believe-Fulfilled Prophecy

john : January 19, 2016 5:57 pm : John Shirk, Staff Pages

JOHN SHIRK – In the Year of Exploration, today’s Reason to Believe is Fulfilled Prophecy.

According to Revelation 19:10, the spirit of prophecy is the testimony of Jesus. Many scholars who teach on this subject believe that Jesus fulfilled at least 300 Old Testament prophecies when He came 2,000 years ago. There are other prophecies that He has yet to fulfill. The fulfilled prophecies about Jesus at His first coming give us reason to believe that Jesus will fulfill the other prophecies yet to be fulfilled.

One person in the Bible who was led to believe in Jesus through prophecy was an Ethiopian official in Acts chapter 8. He was reading a prophecy in the book of Isaiah. Philip was a follower of Jesus who came alongside of the man to explain how Jesus fulfilled that prophecy, and told him the good news about Jesus.

Second Peter 1:21 says that “prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.”

Fulfilled prophecies in the Bible are reasons to believe in God’s good news.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Q and A-What does the Bible say about race relations?

john : January 18, 2016 5:42 pm : John Shirk, Staff Pages

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Q and A explores the question, “What does the Bible have to say about race relations?”

Galatians 3:28 says, “There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male or female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.”

Different national origins, languages, or color of skin are not barriers between two people who have the love of God in their heart. God is the maker of the different races and called his creation of humanity very good. So, He celebrates the variety of His creation.

It was the dream of Martin Luther King that one day his children would live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.

What we learn about the nature of God is that He looks beyond the surface of things and evaluates the motives of our heart. Proverbs 20:27 says, “The lamp of the LORD searches the spirit of a man; it searches out his inmost being.” God’s perspective takes us beyond the surface to appreciate the beauty of godly character. With that perspective, racial differences do not deter followers of Jesus from rich, Christian fellowship.

The humility and love of Jesus dissolves attitudes of race superiority in the Year of Exploration.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Q and A-Why Is Church Participation Important?

john : January 14, 2016 5:39 pm : John Shirk, Staff Pages

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Q and A explores the question, “Why is church participation important?”

Participating in our local church allows us to be part of a support system where we can encourage others to grow in their faith, and others will encourage us in our walk with God. We were not made to live in isolation. We were made to be part of a community. The church is a community of believers where we can learn to follow Jesus faithfully as we find out His will for our lives.

Hebrews 10:24 and 25 says, “Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another-and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”

Participating in our local church is an opportunity to grow in our relationship with God in the Year of Exploration.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Q and A-Gambling

john : January 12, 2016 6:06 pm : John Shirk, Staff Pages

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Q and A segment explores the question, “What does the Bible have to say about gambling?”

While references to gambling are subtle in the Bible, there are warnings in the Bible against the love of money, which is often the desire that prompts people to play the lottery and other games of chance. First Timothy 6:10 says, “Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.”

Playing the lottery is a gamble, not just because of the money we lose if we don’t win, but also the temptations we might face of having so much wealth if we would win.

The odds of winning, however, are not in our favor. Oddsmakers say we have a better chance of getting struck by lightning or getting bit by a shark than winning the lottery. The Bible promotes the idea of earning money by our labor, rather than games of chance or get-rich schemes.

Proverbs 28:19 says, “He who works his land will have abundant food, but the one who chases fantasies will have his fill of poverty.”

A good focus point for our lives is to pursue after God’s own heart rather than chase after the riches of this world in the Year of Exploration.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Reason To Believe-Stars In The Universe

john : January 11, 2016 5:23 pm : John Shirk, Staff Pages

JOHN SHIRK – In the Year of Exploration, today’s Reason to Believe is the stars in the universe.

David wrote in Psalm 19:1, “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day, they pour forth speech; night after night, they display knowledge.”

The stars in the universe tell us that God is the creator of the universe. Psalm 33:6 says, “By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; their starry host by the breath of his mouth.”

The stars also speak of His vastness. In the Milky Way, the galaxy that contains our solar system, astronomers believe there are at least 100 billions stars. That is just our galaxy. Astronomers believe there are more than 100 billion galaxies in the universe.

The stars also speak of God’s unlimited understanding. Psalm 147:4 says, “He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name.”

Philippians 2:14-16 shows us how we can shine like the stars in the universe for the glory of God- by holding out the word of life and doing everything without complaining and arguing.

The stars in the universe are reasons to believe in God’s good news.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Q and A-Who Is Jesus?

john : January 7, 2016 5:05 pm : John Shirk, Staff Pages

JOHN SHIRK – Today’s Q and A explores the question, “Who is Jesus?”

There came a moment in Jesus’ ministry when Jesus asked His disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?”

There were various opinions. The disciples replied, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” Then Jesus wanted to know their thoughts, and asked them, “But what about you? Who do you say I am?”

If Jesus asked you that question, what would you say? Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” In saying this, Peter was acknowledging Jesus as the promised Messiah. Jesus blessed Peter for such a reply.

Elsewhere in the Bible, Jesus is described as Savior and Lord. He is uniquely qualified to save us from our sins and bring us into a right relationship with God.

Knowing Jesus personally as our Savior and Lord is a blessed place to be in the Year of Exploration.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Reason To Believe-Creation

john : January 6, 2016 5:52 pm : John Shirk, Staff Pages

JOHN SHIRK – This is the Year of Exploration at WJTL. We will explore various questions about the Christian faith and examine daily reasons to believe in the Gospel.

Today’s Reason to Believe is Creation.

What we see around us in nature day after day directs our attention to the Master Architect behind it all. God said “Let there be light, and there was light.”

Hebrews 11:3 says, “By faith, we understand that the universe was formed at God’s command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.”

Romans 1:20 says, “Since the creation of the world, God’s invisible qualities-his eternal power and divine nature-have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.”

The Bible reveals the power of God to make something out of nothing. The same God who spoke this world into existence has made you and me, and He is worthy of our praise.

Creation is a reason to believe in God’s good news.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Q and A-Noble Spiritual Goals for 2016

john : January 5, 2016 5:54 pm : John Shirk, Staff Pages

JOHN SHIRK – This is the Year of Exploration at WJTL. We will explore various questions about the Christian faith and examine daily reasons to believe in the Gospel.

Today’s Q and A explores the question, “What are some noble spiritual goals for the New Year?”

Common New Year’s resolutions include losing weight, eating healthy, spending less money, and saving more money.

Those ambitions may be on your list as you begin 2016. There is merit to these goals. It is good to remember that every goal requires a plan. There is a process on the pathway to success.

There are noble goals for growing in our relationship with God in 2016.

The Apostle Paul said, “I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings.”

A good starting place for knowing Jesus is to spend time with Him in prayer and Bible study. Then, take those truths that we learn from God’s Word and live them out for the glory of God.

Establishing priorities to know Jesus and honor His name are noble ambitions in the Year of Exploration.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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Reason To Believe-The Big Picture

john : January 4, 2016 5:17 pm : John Shirk, Staff Pages

JOHN SHIRK – This is the Year of Exploration at WJTL. We will explore various questions about the Christian faith and examine daily reasons to believe in the Gospel.

Today’s Reason to Believe is the Big Picture.

From the beginning to end, the Bible outlines human history in a way that reveals Jesus as our only hope for salvation from sin.

The first two chapters in Genesis reveal Creation, where God made the heavens and the earth.

The third chapter of Genesis reveals the fall of Adam and Eve and the consequences of sin.

Much of the Bible covers God’s plan of redemption through the coming of Jesus Christ. The Old Testament anticipates the arrival of the Christ with the law, feasts, and prophecies. The New Testament reveals Jesus as the Christ, who fulfills the law and the prophets.

And the book of Revelation reveals the new heavens and the new earth, where God’s followers are restored to complete fellowship with God.

According to First Peter 3:18, Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God.

The big picture of history and God’s plan of redemption is a reason to believe in God’s good news.

John Shirk

john@wjtl.com

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