The Sunday Message

Have you ever watched a sporting event and seen someone with a sign that had John 3:16 written on it? That person felt compelled to make that sign and hold it up for thousands to see at the sporting event and maybe for millions more to see on television.

Some people say that a man named Rollen Stewart, also known as the Rainbow Man because of his rainbow colored hair, started the trend after he became a born-again Christian. Stewart is reportedly in prison now because of kidnapping.

Of all the Bible verses Stewart and others could have used, they used John 3:16.

Why?

Maybe because it is so simple that everyone can understand it. Here are three different versions of John 3:16:

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. – John 3:16 (King James Version)

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. – John 3:16 (New International Version)

Yes, God loved the world so much that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him would not be lost but have eternal life. – John 3:16 (Easy-to-Read Version)

It’s a very straightforward message and all a person needs to do is one thing: Believe.

“…whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

Some church leaders may spend an hour or so preaching about salvation when it basically boils down to one word: Believe.

So do you “believe” in God?

If you want more information about having a relationship with God, click HERE.

 

## END ##

The Sunday Message

And Christ gave gifts to people—he made some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to go and tell the Good News, and some to have the work of caring for and teaching God’s people. Christ gave those gifts to prepare God’s holy people for the work of serving, to make the body of Christ stronger.Ephesians 4:11-12 (NCV)

This is the 172nd “The Sunday Message” column! I was kind of amazed when I discovered I had written this many columns called “The Sunday Message.”

I started posting these short messages about God, religion, and the Bible in November 2012. I kind of felt that God wanted me to “go and tell the Good News” in my own way.

I am a Christian, but I fail a lot in my everyday walk with God. In my walk with God over the years, I have done just about everything in the church from delivering the sermon to cleaning the toilets.

Sometimes I am angry and disappointed with the Church and its leaders. I have been angry at God. Sometimes I write about it. I think a lot of people feel the same way.

I do believe that religion is a personal issue. I don’t think that one religious view is better than the other. I think everyone should have a relationship with God, everyone should pray each day, and everyone should read the Bible each day. It helps.

I seldom advertise “The Sunday Message” column via Facebook or Twitter, although my subscribers get the column (and all my other columns) via email early Sunday morning. I try (and sometimes fail) to keep politics out of this column, but there are a few times that religion and politics intersect and I write about it.

So thanks for reading!

When you die, are you going to heaven?

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.John 3:16 (NIV)

## END ##

The Sunday Message

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.John 3:16 (NIV)

In a 2009 movie called New in Town, Renée Zellweger plays Lucy Hill, who is a high-powered consultant in love with her upscale Miami lifestyle. She is sent to a middle of nowhere town in Minnesota to oversee the restructuring of a blue collar manufacturing plant. (IMBd)

Hill met with some of the residents of the small town and one of them asked, “Have you found Jesus?”

Hill responded with, “Well, I didn’t know he was missing.”

The residents did not look too amused and Hill added, “It was just a joke.”

One of the ladies politely responded with, “Normally we don’t joke about Jesus around here.”

In one of my favorite movies, Forrest Gump, Lieutenant Dan Taylor (Gary Sinise) asked, “Have you found Jesus yet, Gump (Tom Hanks)?”

Gump replied, “I didn’t know I was supposed to be looking for him, sir.” (IMBd)

Although some people take offense to jokes about religion, I have always found the above quotes to be funny.

Some religions believe that you have to ask Jesus to come into your life and ask for forgiveness of your sins (repent). You can do this by praying something like this prayer from the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association:

Dear Lord Jesus,
I know I am a sinner, and I ask for your forgiveness.
I believe you died for my sins and rose from the dead.
I trust and follow you as my Lord and Savior.
Guide my life and help me to do your will.
In your name, amen.

Go to THIS WEBSITE if you have questions or want more information.

So, have you found Jesus?

## END ##

The Sunday Message

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. –John 3:16

There’s a new Christian drama movie coming out next month that sounds interesting. It’s called, Do You Believe?

Here is the synopsis:

A dozen different souls—all moving in different directions, all longing for something more. As their lives unexpectedly intersect, they each are about to discover there is power in the Cross of Christ … even if they don’t believe it. Yet.

When a local pastor is shaken to the core by the visible faith of an old street-corner preacher, he is reminded that true belief always requires action. His response ignites a faith-fueled journey that powerfully impacts everyone it touches in ways that only God could orchestrate.

Here’s the trailer:

You can visit the film’s website HERE.

I applaud anyone who attempts to bring a story about Christianity or the Bible to the big screen. Often the makers of the film get hit pretty hard from other Christians if the film does not interpret the Bible story the way others believe.

So far I have seen some pretty decent stories written about this film, so that’s a good start. I think films that help us learn more about God, Jesus, and the Bible are for the most part, a pretty good way to reach people.

## END ##

The Sunday Message

I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. –John 11:25-26 (NIV)

Death. We have probably all heard the saying, “Nobody gets out of this world alive” and that is very true.

We are all going to experience death. Many of us will lose a loved one (or several) before we die.

Sometimes they leave us quickly before we can say goodbye; other times we know they are probably going to die before too long.

A few years ago I sat with my mother for two weeks while she was in hospice. We were just waiting. She could not talk very well so it was just me reading and talking to her. Those days had a profound effect on me. I often think back to those two weeks. I knew my mom was suffering with her illness and that she would be in heaven and the pain would be no more.

We really don’t know the time and place when we will leave this world, but the longer we live the less time we have. As a Christian I believe that I have eternal life, and when I die I will go to heaven.

When I read the obituaries in the paper I wonder about their beliefs. I wonder if they believed in God and eternal life. Sometimes I stop what I am doing and say a prayer for them and their family.

Sometimes I wonder why God took them when they were so young and had so much to offer. When I read that someone committed suicide, my heart breaks – especially if they were young.

Maybe in the end we will find out why they died so young or why they took their life.

But then again, maybe it won’t matter because we will be rejoicing in heaven with the loved ones that left us way too soon!

John 3:16 says, “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

## END ##