Posts by Scott Johnson

Persistent Prayer

Martyn Lloyd Jones wrote, “Everything we do in the Christian life is easier than prayer.” How true that is! Prayer not only requires time and sustained attention, precious commodities in our distracted age, but it is a work of faith, a spiritual exertion of the heart. The biggest challenge to prayer is not that we’re…

The Gospel and Religion

Many people object to Christianity not so much on the basis of the Christian message or biblical doctrine, but because it is a religion and religion in general is objectionable. Here are three common reasons people give for rejecting religion. One, religion is no longer necessary in our modern, scientific world. In the past, when…

The Gospel and Personal Identity

As a society, we are suffering an identity crisis. Not only do many people struggle to know their place in the world, but more fundamentally, we’ve lost sight of how we are to discover our identity in the first place. In our post-modern, individualistic culture, we’ve come to think that a person doesn’t just accept…

The Gospel and the Quest for Happiness

The French observer of American society Alexis de Tocqueville recorded his astonishment at the typical American’s “futile pursuit of that complete felicity which always escapes him.” He wrote that in the 1830’s. Has much changed since then? Though social scientists tell us that, in general, most people seem to be relatively content, there are too…

The Gospel and True Freedom

As Americans, we pride ourselves on being a freedom-loving people. But what is this freedom we cherish? Our secular age has interpreted liberty to mean a radical moral and spiritual autonomy, the unfettered freedom to live by one’s own self-determined meaning, morality, truth, and identity. This notion of freedom was virtually codified as law when…

Ready for Christ, Ready for Anything

The Scriptures have much to say – though not always as clearly as we might wish – about the return of Christ. Christians will continue to debate the timing and circumstances of his Second Coming, probably up to the day he does return. But the Bible’s testimony is unambiguous about this: Jesus is coming again.…

The Believing Samaritan

The Good Samaritan of Jesus’ parable in Luke 10 enjoys the fame and prestige of the honor attached to his name. Though in the minds of first-century Israelites, “good” and “Samaritan” were two words that couldn’t possibly belong in the same sentence, the Samaritan who helped the beaten and left-for-dead Jewish man lives on as…

Unworthy Servants

Jesus’ teaching in Luke 17:7-10 is a reality check for our easily-inflated sense of self-worth. Lest we think our lives as Christians entitles us to God’s blessing, or that we are somehow doing God great favors by our following Christ, Jesus emphatically reminds us of this truth: we are mere servants. And unworthy ones at…

June is “Invite-a-Friend-to-Church Month”

One thing I love about our congregation is the friendly reception visitors receive when they come to our Sunday service. I also appreciate how some people in the church are especially active in inviting and bringing friends and family members to join us for worship. So it’s not as though we’re an unwelcoming church, or…