139 results for author: Pastor Jon Hanson


Are facing a trial or issue that is so bad that you cannot see any solution?

I wonder if there are any of us who have not before or are not now facing a situation that is so terrible that we cannot possibly see a way out. It could be a financial pit that seems bottomless. It could be sickness. It could be that someone you depended on has died. In fact, it could almost be anything that seems to cripple you as you try to move on in life. When we come to these dead and dying situations we come to a halt in our life. We pray and it seems that God does not hear us. We call out to God but we don’t get the results for which we long. Have you ever been in a sick situation where you have called on God but things have only ...

What does God expect from you?

Jesus was without doubt the best teacher of all time. Two prominent techniques the Master used included asking questions and telling stories. When telling stories, Jesus always tied them into the culture of His time. When we read the stories He told, that is the parables by which He taught, we often miss the point of the parable. First, we need to think about what a parable is. A parable is a story with two levels of meaning, where certain details in the story represent something else. Our task is to determine how many details in the story should stand for other things. In general, we tend to “over-interpret.” We tend to go further than ...

Does trusting in Jesus impact the way I live my life?

When we trust in Christ, we begin a great journey. This journey is not always easy, but the outcome is certainly life-changing. I was looking at Titus 1:1-3 recently. The passage reads: Paul, a bondservant of God and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God's elect and the acknowledgment of the truth which accords with godliness, in hope of eternal life which God, who cannot lie, promised before time began, but has in due time manifested His word through preaching, which was committed to me according to the commandment of God our Savior… (NKJV) Even though this is Paul’s introductory statement for his epistle to Titus, it ...

What is church all about?

The church is the assembly of all people past, present, and future under the headship of Jesus Christ (Eph 1:22-23). It consists of the: The universal church—all believers in heaven or on earth; The visible church—local congregations of close acquaintance; and The local church—the particular assembly of the individual. The church came into existence when the Holy Spirit was given on the Day of Pentecost (Act 4:1-4). The church is both an organism (“the body of Christ” or the “bride of Christ”) and an organization (“the temple of God” or “vine and branches”). But why do we go to church? Is it to get a “feel ...

What’s In a Name?

The more I watch television, the more I am aware that our country is rapidly turning away from the God of the Bible. As a result, sin is rampant in our culture. I found myself looking for those responsible—someone to blame. Should we blame greedy executives? Perhaps we should blame the abortionists. What about the illegal immigrants flooding over our borders? How could I forget that we should be blaming the socialists and progressives. Whose name can we accuse regarding the mess in which we find ourselves? But wait! That isn’t the problem at all. The real reason we are in a downward cultural spiral is that we who claim to follow Christ ...

Barriers to Worship

Last week I defined worship as my attitude that God is worthy to receive glory and honor from me. Our view toward God has been steadily eroding. In 1957, A. W. Tozer was concerned about the downgrading of God to a familiar and almost wimpy position. Our view of the power and authority of God has continued on this downward path to the point today where we have lost the very desire to truly worship God. But there are a number of barriers that we face which keep us from our worship of God. Peter serves as an example of how we lose our desire to worship. Peter’s collapse leading to his denial of Jesus is a good case to study because he reminds us ...

The Worth of God

Have you ever thought about what worship is all about? Certainly, we have impressions of what worship is but we are often confused about what true worship is all about. For many of use, we have been seduced by the myths of worship. For example, we may think worship is the fuzzy feeling we get when the music of the church service is done right. We want to be moved; we want to have a feeling. But this is wrong. Worship is a choice and we must make that choice to worship God constantly throughout our lives. Another myth of worship is that worship is a place we go to on Sunday mornings; it is an act, a liturgy, a set of routines we must go through. ...

When Life Conflicts with Faith

Why is God allowing this to happen to me? If we are totally honest with ourselves, we know that sometimes the events of life conflict with our faith. We end up asking questions. Why is God allowing this to happen to me? If God really loved me, why would he allow these hard and horrible things to happen? Why doesn’t God fix my current problems? These are questions we all ask and at times there are no good answers. Perhaps we can learn from the life of David. He asked many of these same questions so we can examine his life and actions to help us determine how we should respond when the events of our life conflict with our faith. David ...

The Superior Sacrifice

The book of Genesis is the foundational roots for the rest of the Bible and the development of Christianity. Among the several groundbreaking Biblical themes that begin in Genesis, perhaps none is as important as the foreshadowing of God’s plan of redemption (Gen 5-9, 10-11, 22, and 39-50). Much of what we learn about redemption is found in the life of Joseph (Gen 39-50). Joseph was an incredible man. Joseph was only 17-years-old when his brothers betrayed him and sold him for the price of a slave (Gen 37:12-36). His brothers originally planned to kill him, but Judah persuaded them to sell him instead. This action of course caused a great ...