God’s Stronghold
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God’s Stronghold

The phone lines jammed in this broadcast as listeners recognized their need for prayer. Pastor Ray's explanation of Psalm 27 and Psalm 84 illustrates our need to pray first for our own salvation and then for others' salvation. In this, God promises to be our stronghold. God's stronghold is both a place of protection from...

Dressed in Rags
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Dressed in Rags

John Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress illustrates both conversion and revival. For the main character Christian, the first step of salvation was to recognize that he was dressed in rags. His family and neighbors thought he'd lost his mind. But Christian began to weep and tremble as he read and believed the Bible. He saw that he...

It’s Time to Be Holy
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It’s Time to Be Holy

Waiting is a large part of the Christian life. And, unless you're desperate about your need to quit sin and be holy, you won't wait on God. Instead, you can casually waltz into the carnival of a modern church. Sanitized from any confrontation with the cross, this carnival will feature a pastor-huckster who will toss...

The Gate
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The Gate

Jesus said to enter eternal life through the narrow gate. But did you know that you can knock at the gate and not receive an answer? This will happen if you knock but aren't serious about your sin. Salvation begins not with kneeling at the cross, but the conviction of the Holy Spirit. Before we...

Through the Cross
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Through the Cross

Did you go through the cross, or just kneel at it? Like John Bunyan's characters Formalist and Hypocrisy, a Christian can avoid the cross and enter the narrow path via shortcut. This, however, is trespassing. It violates God's revealed will that we die with Christ. How do you know if you've died with Christ? Simply,...

If We Confess Our Sins
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If We Confess Our Sins

“If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:8-9). These words combated the first-century Gnostic heresy that the soul could be...

The Surprising Antichrist
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The Surprising Antichrist

Did you know that the antichrist is already here? Just as the Jews missed the Christ because he wasn't what they expected, many professing Christians miss the antichrist because it isn't what they expect. The antichrist is not a man who will rise up for a few years at the end of time. The antichrist...

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O God, Awaken My Heart! (November 2016)

When Christian, of Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress, learned how to be saved, he immediately ran towards the narrow gate shouting, “Life! Life! Eternal Life!” Are you doing this? Have you ever? Jesus said, “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able.” Will...

The Crooked Lane
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The Crooked Lane

After Bunyan's Christian and Hopeful leave the Delectable Mountains, they meet a pilgrim named Ignorance from the Country of Conceit. He entered the way by a crooked lane instead of the narrow gate. Ignorance refused to be convinced that he would be unable to enter the Celestial City unless he was crucified with Christ and...

Delectable Mountains (or, What Is Your Understanding of the Atonement?)
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Delectable Mountains (or, What Is Your Understanding of the Atonement?)

Your salvation largely depends on what you believe happened at the cross, as our behaviors simply mirror our beliefs. Did God punish God with the literal wrath for the past, present, and future sins of only the elect, who will be inevitably saved from hell? Or did Jesus, as both high priest and sacrifice, lay down...