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Sermon: The Power of a Father

Sermon: The Power of a Father

Last year on Father’s Day, I preached a message on the power of a father. As Benjamin was being born to the patriarch Jacob, his dying mother attempted to give him the name Ben-Oni (meaning “Son of My Sorrow”). But Jacob insisted on calling him Benjamin (meaning “Son of my Right Hand”). As his father, Jacob established him in his identity, not allowing him to be marked with a negative name that was not consistent with his...

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How Preconceived Beliefs Impact our Spiritual Discernment

How Preconceived Beliefs Impact our Spiritual Discernment

Sometimes we tend to think that when God speaks, moves, or acts, it will be completely obvious that it was God who acted. But in many cases, the Bible paints a dramatically different picture. I was recently drawn to study John 12:27-29, where Jesus is preparing to go to the cross: “Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour’? But for this purpose I came to this hour. Father, glorify Your name.”...

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The Perils of Passive Leadership

The Perils of Passive Leadership

Healthy and effective leadership requires a wide variety of character traits and skills. We must first have a heart-posture of serving the ones we lead. We must have the right foundations in place: intimacy with God, security in our identity in Christ, and integrity of heart and behavior. Then, we can grow in the gifts and skills required to lead. While many are quick to recognize the danger of domineering and controlling leadership styles,...

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Sermon: Living for Eternity

Sermon: Living for Eternity

“For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appears for a little time and then vanishes away.” (James 4:14) At the beginning of this year, a tragic death in the family brought the topic of eternity to the forefront of my mind. No one is guaranteed tomorrow, and compared to eternity, our lives are like a vapor. I recently preached a message on living for eternity. Every one of of us will spend eternity in either heaven or...

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The Role of Fasting in Receiving and Ministering Deliverance

The Role of Fasting in Receiving and Ministering Deliverance

I believe that prayer and fasting is one of the keys to walking in a greater anointing for deliverance. Fasting means to abstain from food for a spiritual purpose. There are various types of fasts, and fasting can be done for different lengths of time. Jesus both practiced and taught about fasting, and we should incorporate this spiritual discipline into our walk with God. Right after being baptized by John the Baptist and anointed with the...

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Removing the Stigma Associated with Deliverance from Demons

Removing the Stigma Associated with Deliverance from Demons

One of the obstacles to seeing the ministry of deliverance fully restored and active in the church today is that there is often an unnecessary stigma associated with it. Because of misunderstanding and fear, the thought of needing deliverance from an evil spirit sounds alarming, embarrassing, or shameful. And if you come from a background that inclines toward skepticism and resistance to anything supernatural, the concept of deliverance...

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Sermon: The Gate of Heaven

Sermon: The Gate of Heaven

This past Sunday I preached a message at Threshold Church called The Gate of Heaven. Genesis 28 records a dream that Jacob had, in which he saw a ladder going from earth to heaven, and angels of God ascending and descending on it. When he awoke from this encounter he made this statement: “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven!” (Genesis 28:17). This is the first...

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The Subtle Danger of Soulish Preaching

The Subtle Danger of Soulish Preaching

One of the subtle dangers in preaching is for the message to be more soulish than spiritual. This is what happens when human wisdom runs the day: “This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic” (James 3:15 ESV). It seems that preparing and delivering sermons has become a science these days. The emphasis is placed on communication skills instead of spiritual depth. Instead of bringing a...

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Using “Discovering Your Destiny” for Small Groups

Using “Discovering Your Destiny” for Small Groups

My book Discovering Your Destiny was released just about two years ago, and is currently my top-selling book. Our destiny is directly connected to, and flows out of, our relationship with God. While there is no formula to walking in your purpose, there are biblical principles and patterns that are important to understand. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should...

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Is Entertainment Depleting your Spiritual Life?

Is Entertainment Depleting your Spiritual Life?

I am convinced that one of the greatest idols in America today is entertainment. It is not that entertainment in and of itself is sinful, but that the prominent place it holds in many of our hearts and lives is alarming. And on top of that, in many cases the type of entertainment that believers choose to engage in is ungodly, compromising, and dishonoring to God. I am often shocked to learn of the type of movies, television, music, books,...

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