The Cross and the Corinthians

“For I determined not to know anything among you, save Jesus Christ, and Him crucified” 1 Cor. 2:2.

 

This week on Sharin’ Hearts Woman to Woman, Janie, and Sharon dig into the counsel Paul is giving to the Corinthian Church to help uncover their blindness about the cross of Christ.

They were very intelligent people and they were using their own intellect to understand the cross, but God’s wisdom is not received by the natural man. Even as Believers, we can begin to think that the cross of Christ is the one-time act of love that Jesus died for our sins. However, His sacrifice on the cross benefits our life for all eternity.

The cross provides all that we need to live victoriously. It paid for our sins by the blood of Jesus. It also took care of our flesh by the crucifixion and defeated the power of Satan in our lives by the resurrection.

There was nothing left undone. Jesus did pay it all so that we could have life abundantly free from sin and death.

So join in the conversation as we discuss the Cross and the Corinthians.

The Prayer Life

This week on Sharin’ Hearts: The Fireside Bookshelf, Ginger Green digs into The Prayer Life By Charles Usher

The question at hand isn’t about how many people prayed daily, but how many people truly understand biblical teaching and perspective on prayer. Because if we are truly serious about spiritual growth, about deepening our relationship with Christ… Prayer must be assigned the highest priority!

So, come be a part as we join author Charles Usher in a discussion of the prayer life and how to live it, with a concentration on spiritual warfare in his book, The Prayer Life.  This is a small book perhaps 50 pages yet filled with immense truth and practicality. The topics Usher addresses include: hindrances to prayer, equipment for warfare, the prayer of faith, perseverance in prayer, and prayers for nations, homes, and circumstances; for Scripture tells us to, “watch and pray.”

The Prayer Life by Charles Usher is currently out of print and can be found online only in very limited quantities. If you are unable to locate a copy and are interested in adding The Prayer Life to your library of Christian resources, please contact The Fireside Book Shelf through our home page and we can assist you in obtaining a reprint of this timeless work.

Forgiving Forward

This week on Sharin’ Hearts: The Fireside Bookshelf, Ginger Green explores Forgiving Forward by Bruce and Toni Hebel. This is not the average “forgiveness” book.  Heavy with experiences made practical and answering questions many are not even asking; makes this a life-transforming book and one that should be in your library.

 

Forgiveness is foundational to a life of faith.  It is so much more than saying, “I am sorry.”  True forgiveness will take us out of our comfort zone and required a renewing of our minds.  Our natural minds cannot work from logic and reason in this matter because it is a supernatural work provided by The Supernatural God.  We are told to forgive as Christ has forgiven us (Ephesians 4:30.) Whatever has been done to me from another’s sin nature, I have done to Christ with my sin nature. All sin, no matter the degree required Christ to go to the Cross and pay the price.  The words may be simple but the process is complex in that our hearts must be made right before God with having our speech free of corrupt communication and only for edification to the hearer, being free from grieving or quenching the Spirit and getting rid of bitterness, extreme anger for harm to another person, and other thinking that is of the flesh with corresponding negative emotions. (Ephesians 4:29-31.)

Many often quote John 8:32 “You shall know the Truth and the Truth shall set you free.”  However, there is a key to that reality being applied and that is found in the preceding verse 31, “IF you abide (to be at home)in ME and My words abide in you, THEN, knowing and applying the Truth can be made practical for necessary forgiveness releasing burden and guilt that unforgiveness carries.

The Way of The Master Part Two

This week on Sharin’ Hearts: The Fireside Bookshelf, Ginger Green continues with the second half of a look into The Way of The Master by Ray Comfort.

 

Last week, we began a special two-part feature on Ray Comfort’s The Way of the Master. We learned from Ray Comfort and Kirk Cameron that only a small percentage of American churchgoers share their faith with others. In fact, a majority of Christians today have come to the conclusion that sharing the gospel of Christ is somehow not their personal responsibility.

One reason this is happening is because the enemy has very subtly diverted our attention away from our core message. Instead of preaching the good news that sinners can be made righteous in Christ and escape the wrath to come, we have settled for a “gospel” that implies that God’s primary purpose in saving us is to unfold a “wonderful plan” for our lives: to solve our problems, make us happy in Christ and rescue us from the hassles of this life.

But what unregenerate sinners really seek is a life change that brings positive results and won’t cost too much. If non-Christians respond to the gospel message only to improve their lives, they will be disillusioned when persecution comes.

So, I would like to invite you to come and be a part as we continue with Ray Comfort as he illuminates an almost forgotten biblical key that has the power to unlock the door of the human heart. A proven and effective way of making the gospel make sense to the unsaved. So rooted in the Scriptures, once you see it, you will forever wonder how you could’ve missed it. It is the biblical principle of bypassing the intellect (the place of argument) and speaking directly to the conscience-just the way Jesus did.

The Way of The Master

This week on Sharin’ Hearts: The Fireside Bookshelf, Ginger Green examines The Way of The Master by Ray Comfort.

 

How is it that a majority of Christians today have come to the conclusion that sharing the gospel of Christ is somehow not their personal responsibility.

I will be the first to admit that figuring out how to begin a conversation in order to share your faith with someone can seem like one of life’s most daunting tasks and certainly not all of us are called to a full-time role of evangelism. However, just because it does not come naturally for many of us, does not negate the fact that every Christian should be prepared to give an account of their faith when the Holy Spirit presents us with the opportunity.

We cannot wait around and hope that if the situation ever arises, we can simply “wing it”. If we don’t prepare to give an account of our faith, then more often than not, we will fail to heed the call when the Holy Spirit provides is an occasion to do so.

How can we learn to share our faith is simply, effectively and biblically… the way Jesus did?

One excellent tool that has greatly assisted me is: The Way of the Master by Ray Comfort with Commentary by Kirk Cameron.  This book gives life to an almost forgotten biblical key that has the power to unlock the door of the human heart. It is a proven and effective way of making the gospel make sense to the unsaved.

It is rooted in the Scriptures, once you see it, you will forever wonder how you could’ve missed it. It is the biblical principle of bypassing the intellect (the place of argument) and speaking directly to the conscience (the place of knowledge of right and wrong) – the way Jesus did.

Lord Teach Us To Pray

“I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; for kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior” 1 Timothy 2:1-3.

 

This week on Sharin Hearts Woman to Woman, Janie Ratzlaff and Sharon Hoskins discuss the importance of prayer. It seems to be an area of struggle among many believers. Most times we pray in the manner we have heard others pray, but rarely feel a real connection to the Lord and wonder if our prayers are really going anywhere. Some describe their prayers as hitting the ceiling and falling to the floor. There is a Christian song that talks about all the things that happen while the church is asleep. We may not be literally asleep but we have a clever enemy that is very good at deception. Could the root cause of downfall that we see in society today be because the church as a whole doesn’t know how to pray? Join the conversation to discover why we should say, “Lord, Teach Us To Pray”.

Predators in Our Pulpits

This week on Sharin’ Hearts: The Fireside Bookshelf, Ginger Green examines Predators in Our Pulpits by W. Phillip Keller. Across the centuries since Christ came along in human form as a service, men and women of all creeds have had to examine their motives for ministry in the light of his humility and other self-denial. Why do they serve at all?

 

This week on Sharin’ Hearts: The Fireside Bookshelf, Ginger Green examines Predators in Our Pulpits by W. Phillip Keller. Across the centuries since Christ came along in human form as a service, men and women of all creeds have had to examine their motives for ministry in the light of his humility and other self-denial. Why do they serve at all?

It is a question of extreme importance. And while many stay glued to their TVs every night questioning the motives of our local, state, and national leaders, many take for granted the leadership in our churches – failing to hold accountable our spiritual leaders for the truth or lack of truth they speak.

Yet today’s author asserts the greatest threat to the church of Jesus Christ today is not from without, but from our own leadership within. He asks:

· Are our leaders guiding us to an authentic relationship with Christ, or are many merely providing balm for everyday life?

· Why are we hearing less and less of the true gospel message?

· Are we neglecting the unsaved and failing to provide answers for Christians living discontented lives?

· How deeply committed are we to proclaiming God’s truth and adhering to his commands?

In the face of today’s spiritual perils, W. Phillip Keller presses every Christian layperson to examine the state of the Christian church and depend upon Christ alone in his book, Predators in Our Pulpits.

To Know Him

“Therefore we are buried with Him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life” Romans 6:4.

 

 

This week on Sharin’ Hearts Woman to Woman, Janie Ratzlaff and Sharon Hoskins discuss the privileges we receive from the price Jesus paid on the Cross. As we live in this “age of grace,” where we receive many benefits from God as His children through the sacrifice of Christ, we forget that we have a responsibility in the relationship with Him. Romans 12:1-2 are beautiful verses that lay out a game plan for the relationship with God being a two-way street. But, our greatest responsibility is to know Him, and we find that everything else fits together when we spend time to know God.

Lifestyle of Discernment

“Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feeble-minded, support the weak, be patient toward all men” 1 Thessalonians 5:14.

 

This week on Sharin’ Hearts Woman to Woman, Janie Ratzlaff and Sharon Hoskins discuss the scriptures which give instructions that require discernment. If we continue to read in 1 Thessalonians 5:15-23, we discover many more discerning instructions such as; follow that which is good, don’t render evil for evil, rejoice evermore, pray without ceasing, give thanks in everything, do not despise prophesying, do not quench the Spirit, and prove all things. These commands describe a lifestyle of discernment that will benefit our whole spirit, soul, and body to be preserved blameless to the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Many times in life we are making decisions before we are filtering it through God’s word. Other times we let our emotions get the best of us and we speak before we think. Join in this conversation that challenges our spiritual growth and apply the practical ways we can begin to live a lifestyle of discernment.

Grace Grows Best in Winter

This week on Sharin’ Hearts: The Fireside Bookshelf, Ginger Green features this special book that Joni Eareckson Tada read during the first winter of her disability. Grace grew then for her. And through grace, you will grow too!

 

The “why” of human suffering is an age-old question. Recently, there have been several people within my circle of influence who have faced a season of suffering. Some have come through now to see the hilltop others are still journeying through the Valley.

So, come be a part, as we examine, Grace Grows Best in Winter from author Margaret Clarkson who offers a thoughtful, biblical exploration of the “why” of human suffering.

Clarkson indicates this is a book of help for those who must live with a continuing problem of suffering, of whatever kind. It seeks to lead sufferers to discover and to embrace the character of God, so they will be enabled to live triumphantly within the hedge of suffering, wherein God has placed them, and from which in his inscrutable sovereignty He had not yet seen fit to release them.
This is not an “escape” book, nor does it emphasize physical healing, although it frankly accepts the fact that God can and sometimes does heal. It makes no attempt to probe the problem of pain from a philosophical viewpoint, nor is it a book of debate. It contains no sentimentality and offers no shallow “comfort.”

Suffering is seen as one of God’s means of enlarging the soul’s capacity for Himself, and sufferers are enjoined to seek God’s enabling that they may lose none of the present or future fullness that God would have them experience as a result. This is not the most usual view of human suffering, but Clarkson is convinced that it is the only practical, workable way to cope with its stresses.

Loved by God Part Two

This week on Sharin’ Hearts: The Fireside Bookshelf, Ginger Green continues with the second half of this amazing book, Loved by God, by R.C. Sproul.

 

With the mastery of a scholar and the heart of a servant, acclaimed theologian R. C. Sproul continues our journey into the very heart of God… contemplating the deepest mysteries of His perfect love.

In the conclusion of this two-part feature, we will take a closer look at not only God’s immense love but also His divine wrath and also explore the incredible privilege which allows us to call our God…Father.

Once you discover for yourself the astonishing depth, wonder, and richness of God’s love, you’ll want to share it – and this book – with everyone you know.

Judge With Tender Mercies

“Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, long-suffering; forbearing one another, and forgiving one another” Col. 3:12-13.

This week on Sharin’ Hearts Woman to Woman, Janie and Sharon study what it means to judge according to scripture and find that we are commanded to judge (investigate, distinguish, and examine) not only situations but also people and ourselves. We are not to judge to condemnation, but to reconciliation. With the correct definition of judgment and the right context of judgment, we can discover how to judge with tender mercies.

Judge Unto Righteousness

“For if we judge ourselves, we should not be judged. But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world” 1 Corinthians 11:31-32.

 

This week on Sharin’ Hearts Woman to Woman, Janie and Sharon discuss the demand we hear from the world, not to judge; however, we find scriptures that command us to judge. So, how are we misappropriating the truth of scripture and misusing the term judge? Join the discussion to discover the different definitions of the word judge, ways to distinguish it in context, and the command we are given to judge unto righteousness.

Key Words to the Christian Life

This week on Sharin’ Hearts: The Fireside Bookshelf, Ginger Green explores Key Words to the Christian Life by Warren Wiersbe.

 

Never underestimate the power of words. A judge speaks, and a man is condemned or set free. A physician speaks, and a person has surgery, or he is sent home from the hospital. A government official speaks, and millions of dollars are spent or withheld.

In our own personal lives, we know the power of words – words that can bless us and words that can cut us and hurt us. It is very important for us as Christians to know the meaning of biblical words. We need to understand these words and how they apply to our lives.

Words like justification, sanctification, propitiation, imputation, and mediation – these words make up the technical vocabulary of the Christian life and are very important!

So, come be a part as we delve into a world of words with Warren Wiersbe in Key Words to the Christian Life. Where he will help us establish a solid vocabulary for guiding our daily Christian life.

To Judge or Not to Judge

“Judge not, that you be not judged. For with what judgment you judge, you shall be judged: and with what measure of mete, it shall be measured to you again” Matthew 7:1-2.

 

 

This week on Sharin’ Hearts Woman to Woman, Janie and Sharon discuss the scriptural definition of judgment. Matthew 7:1-2 tells us not to judge; however, Philippians 1:9 says, “And this I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and in all judgment; that you may approve things that are excellent; that you may be sincere and without offense till the day of Christ.” Join in this challenging conversation on the topic of judgment and the examination of the question…are we to judge or not to judge?