“He must increase, but I must decrease.” John 3:30
When a believer comes to these words of John the Baptist, they should hit home with zeal. They should find fellowship in our heart. Like one string struck on a guitar vibrates the ones next to it, John’s desire to see Jesus exalted and himself brought lower should resonate in our own hearts.
There is a worldliness that has crept into most everything Christians do today. We aren’t primarily concerned that Jesus must increase, and even less so that we should—let alone “must”—decrease. I see this a lot among Christians who produce content. Often it is about promoting their blog, book, podcast, merchandise, etc. over primarily wanting to see others genuinely come to know and love the Lord Jesus Christ. That ought not to be.
Christians have just as much right in this world to enterprise and entrepreneurship as non-Christians. Being industrious is virtuous; God’s Word says so in many places (read through the Proverbs, for example). But if we are building something off the name and Person of Jesus Christ, we had better be sure we are putting him first. Our primary goal ought to be that his name be great among the nations (Malachi 1:11), even if that means our venture eventually fades out and the machine we spent so much time building turns to rust.
Do I want people to listen to Grace and Peace Radio? Sure.
Do I want them to maybe buy a coffee mug or something in the store? Sure.
Do I want them to tell a friend? Sure.
But do I want those things because I want them to know my name? God forbid!
There are two correlated events that must happen daily in our lives: He must increase and we must decrease. Both of those should cause us to rejoice.
Today, may God use my life and yours to exalt himself. May he be glorified whether he chooses to elevate us or remove us to make way for another.
In this episode Anthony talks about keeping our faith “charged up” even in uncertain times.
The Bible speaks of several kinds of faith.
The two most commonly talked about are believing faith to be saved and justified before God, through believing in Jesus as Lord and his atoning sacrifice for our sins on the cross.
The other kind of faith we often think of is what comes after—that new life of living by faith.
Over several of the last episodes of Grace and Peace Radio we’ve looked at various helps for us in these strange and uncertain times—hope (Ep011), patience (Ep014), persistence (Ep015), and God’s providence (Ep016). Today, we’ll be talking about Faith, specifically that second kind. What is faith? Where do we get it? What, if anything, is our part? Daily faith. And, of course, faith and works.
Paul wrote to the Corinthians that “we walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Cor 5:7).
As Christians, we don’t just have faith in uncertain times or difficult times—our whole lives are supposed to be marked by this walking faith!
We’ll talk about walking by faith, in good times and difficult uncertain times, today, on Grace and Peace Radio!
Show Note: Here is the story from the China Inland Mission about how faith sets the table.
In these uncertain times, it’s easy to lose patience. But God doesn’t give us a pass on our impatience. In this episode we’ll talk about patience, its opposite, and how we can remain patient even in these uncertain times.
We Christians are Pretty Bad About Patience
Let’s face it, if there is one thing Christians are pretty terrible with, it’s patience. We are so like the Israelites in the Wilderness, sometimes we even resemble Saul rushing to act and sacrifice before Samuel arrives.
Human weakness or not, God does not give us a pass on our impatience. Over and over in the Scriptures we are commanded to “wait on the Lord”.
As I record this, COVID-19 has literally stopped the world, and we don’t yet know for how long. The “experts” crunch their data, hoping it is reliable to begin with, create their models, and offer their best guesses. Meanwhile, like a freight train whose emergency brake has been pulled, we’ve lived through life as we know it screaming and grinding to a halt.
We Christians need to model our faith in God to our neighbors. We can do that by modeling at least three characteristics: Patience, Persistence, and trust in God’s Providence.
Over the next three episodes we’ll talk about each of these, starting today with Patience.
What do we do with our impatience?
What resources does God give us to be patient?
Can we be patient and eager at the same time?
We’ll answer these questions together, today, on Grace and Peace Radio.
In this “reboot” episode, Anthony discusses how and why Thy Kingdom Comma is now Grace and Peace Radio, looks at at an example of how we’re to have faith in God in the face of danger, and how the current global pandemic should move us to look Godward.
Believe or not, I’m actually recording this outside. I thought it would be something good, something different. You know, right now around the country around the world, there’s so many people that have a stay at home order. And I thought, I’m gonna go ahead and record this outside!
So hopefully you’re hearing some birds chirping in the background, lawn mower way off in the distance. And I just thought you know what, let’s bring some life and some some outside into the podcast. How about that?
By the way, I’m sure you already noticed the name of the podcast has changed. That’s right, we are moving from Thy Kingdom Comma, to Grace and Peace Radio. So I am super excited about that.
Christians need the same foundation Joseph had in temptation and trials
This morning I read the story of Joseph again. I thought about how, at about 17 years old, he had the personal fortitude to flee the lustful temptations of his master’s wife. His reasoning? After professing his loyalty to his master (her husband), which really was a greater loyalty to him than she had as his wife, he declares, “How then could I do this great evil and sin against God?” (Gen 39:9). It would be disloyal and wrong to dishonor his master, but it would be “great evil and sin” to dishonor God.