Some verses of Scripture tend to relax our minds and calm our hearts in an extra special way. The words of Jeremiah 29:11-13 are like this: “For I know the plans that I have planned for you,” says the LORD," etc. We easily interpret these soothing words to mean something like: “If I pray to God, then I will find the perfect spouse, discover my dream job, have a successful business, enjoy a happy and harmonious marriage, have a good career, and expect good health.” For many, these verses are a long and poetic way of saying, “God promises that everything’s going to work out really great for me,” or, “I’ve got a great life ahead.” Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller to discover the background and meaning of these verses and to learn how to better apply these verses to our lives today.
Is retaliation wrong? Is it ever appropriate for a person to carry out acts of personal revenge or retribution against a person who has wronged him? Sometimes believers will quote verses like an "eye for an eye" to support personal acts of retribution or revenge, though other verses of Scripture seem to teach the opposite principle, assigning all retaliation to God. Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller in discovering how we should understand these verses today.
Join Pastor Overmiller in examining the first misused Bible verse ever, then learn what this sobering example teaches us about the dangers of misusing Bible verses today.
“All things work together for good" (Rom 8:28). Is this a universal promise? Is it something you can say to any person, at any time, who is facing any kind of hardship? It is not. And is it a promise for good things in this life now? Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller to discover what the word all refers to in this important Bible promise and how it should encourage your outlook in life.
"What happened to the fish and sea creatures in the Great Flood? Since everything was destroyed, how did fish survive?" Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller "underwater" to discover what happened to fish when God covered the Earth with a flood.
How many times have you heard someone say this about the word all? “All means 'all' and that’s all that all means?” While this is true (the word all does mean “all”), the word all doesn’t always mean every possible thing all at once.
One example of how we misuse this word occurs in Philippians 4:13. "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." To what does "all things" refer? Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller in discovering the bedrock principle for Christian living that this verse teaches (and what is doesn't teach).
When another believer slogs through a series of difficult circumstances, do you ever try to encourage him or her by quoting 1 Corinthians 10:13, at least in part? You might say, “Don’t worry, God never gives you more than you can handle!” Before you do this again, let me encourage you to consider whether or not this verse applies to the situation at hand. Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller in this short episode to discover what this verse does and doesn't teach.
Sometimes we lift right ideas from the wrong places in the Bible. One such example is how we use John 12:32, when Jesus said, "I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all peoples to myself." While we may quote this as a call to worship or a promise for evangelism, it is neither. Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller to discover what this verse means and why it is important not misapply such a verse, even with good intentions and for a good cause.
"Blood is thicker than water” is a popular phrase, but it is not a Bible verse. But there is one passage of Scripture (among others) that we frequently misunderstand, Matthew 18:19-20, which says, “I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered together in my name, I am there in the midst of them.” Do these verses teach us universal principles about all kinds of prayer (as we often assume), or do they teach us something more specific? Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller to discover what Jesus is teaching about the difficult but important practice of church discipline.
What Jesus said to Mary Magdalene when she saw him at the empty tomb after his resurrection serves as a good reminder for us today as well, especially when we head into a new year. Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller in learning this important, forward-looking perspective from John 20:17.
Proverbs 29:18 famously declares, “Where there is no vision, the people perish.” But does this verse teach the importance of what we call "vision casting" today? Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller in discovering first what this verse does not mean, but then what this verse does mean for you today.
When you encounter a lion in the wild, how should you respond? I ask this because life in this world as a Christian is more like hiking through an African savanna than strolling through a zoo - but we easily forget this reality. Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller to learn some helpful advice from 1 Peter 5:8-9 for how to respond when the roar of the devil affects your life.
We tend to look at the suffering we go through now as though it is a big deal that never ends, but Paul explains how it is the exact opposite. Our suffering is small in weight and temporary in duration! But if this is true, then what in our lives is large and eternal? Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller to discover the encouraging answer to this question from 2 Corinthians 4:17-18.
Did you know that the outward, external suffering you endure as a Christian have an inner renewing effect on you, enabling you to become more like Christ and to become a more effective witness for him? Together with Pastor Thomas Overmiller, discover how Paul explains this fascinating process of personal change in 2 Corinthians 4:16.
Have you considered the ripple effects that happen when you rely on God's grace in your suffering? Discover from 2 Corinthians 4:15 with Pastor Thomas Overmiller how depending on God's grace ultimately leads to more and more people in the world giving God the thanksgiving that he deserves!
Do you ever feel like you are suffering in a way that is unique and more unbearable the suffering that anyone else endures? Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller to consider how Paul felt about his suffering and how he found encouragement from the way that King David viewed his own intense suffering in the Old Testament (2 Cor 4:13-14).
Do you struggle to understand the purpose for your suffering? Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller to discover from 2 Corinthians 4:2 how Christian suffering is a precious opportunity to reveal the truth about Jesus to those around you.
Do you experience intense and difficult suffering as a Christian? Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller in discovering the kind of suffering that Paul endured and learn how Paul remained resolute and serene as he endured these ongoing challenges.
It is easy to embrace the mistaken idea that Christian growth will somehow make you a more powerful and attractive person. Together with Pastor Thomas Overmiller, learn from 2 Corinthians 4:6-7 how to view yourself properly so that the bright light of the gospel may shine through your life more brilliantly than before.
You are a worshipful being by nature who becomes like whatever you choose to worship. Are you worshiping the true God and becoming more like him? Or are you worshiping and becoming like someone or something else instead? Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller to consider some interesting observations from Scripture about this important lesson.
When you live in an urban environment like New York City, you cannot see the natural revelation of God as readily and directly as you may in a more rural setting. Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller to consider the challenge and benefit of this unique challenge.
Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller in looking at 2 Corinthians 4:5-6 to learn both how Paul preached the gospel and what he depended on God to do when he ministered this way!
Why do nonbelievers frequently reject the gospel when you share it with them? Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller in taking a look at 2 Corinthians 4:3-4 to discover why they rejected the gospel when Paul shared it with them and find encouragement in your own attempts to be a witness for Christ.
When people push back against you for teaching the New Testament truth of the gospel, whether for salvation or for Christian living, then a subtle temptation grows to adjust your methods in ways that are contrary to the gospel. Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller to learn from 2 Corinthians 4:2 how Paul chose to reject and avoid such changes and how he chose to minister instead.
Paul’s outreach efforts in the city of Ephesus yielded remarkable results, yet Luke did not record these results as a headcount of total converts (Acts 19:10). Join Pastor Thomas Overmiller in discovering the effects of Paul's gospel ministry and how you and your church can evaluate the effectiveness of your gospel outreach in a similar way.