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The Refiner’s Fire

Jesus urges the church at Laodicea to “buy gold tried in the fire.” The gold is saving faith (1 Peter). The cost is to fully submit to Christ's refining fire that purifies, sanctifies, and ultimately saves the soul as it walks in the promises of God and doesn't give in to despair (Malachi 3). The...

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Putting Out the Fire of God

Is there a fire for God in your heart? A close look at Jesus' parable of the sower sheds light on his message to the lukewarm church at Laodicea. Like these early Christians, many in the modern American church, as well as much of the western world, have had the fire of God in their hearts...

A Letter from God
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A Letter from God

When Jesus looks at our works, he will see us as hot, cold, or lukewarm. If you're uncertain about your actions, you need to submit them to Jesus! Being confident in Jesus is a choice–don't settle for anything less than total confidence that you are led by the Holy Spirit at every moment, as you remain...

Precious Treasures of the Heart
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Precious Treasures of the Heart

Jesus said, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven…” This touching sermon from the Sermon on the Mount series shows that this passage isn't just about money. We collect many things in our hearts, such...

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Resetting Our Moral Compass (Encore)

In this first message in the Sermon on the Mount series, Pastor Ray lays out the design of Jesus in the Sermon on the Mount to straighten out the bitterness of the human heart and put us on the road to righteousness. Because the Beatitudes are sequential, we won't make spiritual progress if we avoid mourning...

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Nothing Is Hidden from God

When Achan stole and hid gold, silver, and fine clothing from God, the Lord withdrew from Israel, and thirty-six people died in battle. The Lord exposed Achan's sin to all Israel, who stoned and burned Achan and his family. Just as the fire of judgment consumed Achan, the fires of hell will consume us if...

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Jesus Waits for Your Decision

The parable of the prodigal son shows two responses to the gospel. In the first, the lost son comes to his senses and cries, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight, and am no longer worthy to be called your son!” In the second, the elder son holds onto a hard, angry...

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A Prepared Salvation

Focusing on the parable of the prodigal son, this continuation in the study of Charles Finney's book God's Call sets in terrifying relief the true condition of sinners as thieves and liars towards God. Like the prodigal, we must come to our senses and see that we've lived in a pretend world that says, “I...

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Stolen Goods?

A deep consideration of how you have stolen yourself from God will produce great pain. We must see this before we can truly offer a full confession to God and make restitution to people whom we've injured. When you see that everything that you own, and are, belongs to God; and that you've stolen it...

What Must I Do to Be Saved?
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What Must I Do to Be Saved?

In this sobering message, Pastor Ray identifies that salvation consists in a state of mind that is supremely happy in (and resigned to) God's will. To be saved, we must recognize that we've stolen ourselves from God, return to Him, and make restitution to all we've injured. Doubtful actions will block us from hearing the...