False Hope in a Fake Jesus

In what way do we most often think of Jesus? Do we think of him most often in terms of how he might help with our problems? Do we sometimes fall into the trap of thinking Jesus’ entire purpose is to make us happy?  Has mainstream Christianity lost a real, biblical view of Jesus in all of his glory!? Our…

Does Biblical Knowledge Matter?

We just started the book of Colossians at Raintree, and I’ve already been challenged just by Paul’s introductory remarks in Chapter 1… The second part of verse 9: “We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may…

Why Small Groups?

So what’s the big deal about small groups? Isn’t Sunday morning worship enough? In today’s culture it makes sense that many don’t see the need for small groups in church life. Church is a place where we go to have this great experience in which people have a program set up for us, and then…

Why Expository Preaching?

In January at Raintree, we’ll be starting our first whole book of the Bible to go through together. Now because this is our first whole book to go through since I’ve been here, and because I think it’s important, I want to share why it’s my conviction to spend most of our time as a…

Not Just the Reason for the Season

Isaiah 9:6-7 For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne…

Big Church is Not Just for Big People

One of my earliest childhood memories is sitting next to my parents in First Baptist Church of Wichita Falls, listening to Robert Jeffress. Well, I wasn’t actually listening to anything he had to say, but I had my coloring book, and I distinctly remember my parents having their Bibles open every week, taking lots of…

Stop Trying to Change the World

Weird title, I know- but not misleading. Let me explain. Changing the world is something that God has done and is doing. Jesus has had more impact on the world than any other person in history. He and 12 disciples truly changed the world. Sometimes we read the New Testament and think, “God can use…

A Missouri Thanksgiving

This last Sunday we observed the Lord’s Supper, which was a really neat thing to do with my new church. It was the first time Lauryn and I observed the Lord’s Supper with Raintree, and also my very first time to ever “lead” the Lord’s Supper. What was most meaningful for me in remembering Christ’s…

Does Church Membership Matter?

Why join a church? Can’t we just attend regularly? Is church membership even biblical? Does membership really even matter? As a pastor, I’ve been asked this questions many times. Frankly, they’re great questions that I want to address here! Not a Club! When thinking about how people think about the church, one thing is clear: people are confused about what it…

What is the Gospel?

What is the Gospel? Seems like an easy question with an easy answer, but when asked to put it into words, are we able to? Are we able to clearly present the Gospel in such a way that a non-Christian would fully understand it? The Enemy of Truth There is no greater truth for us…

Prophecy and Sensationalizing God’s Word

Prophecy News Watch It seems that with so many political and social changes happening in the United States over the last few years, prophecy news watch outlets and pundits are busier than ever. Blood Moon Prophecy The Mayan Calendar “Jade Helm” ending date coinciding with Biblical prophecy The Bible Code The Mystery of the Shemitah…

You Are Mine | Isaiah 43:1-7

When I started studying this text, I immediately noticed how timely of a message it was. In the midst of so much changing culturally, socially, and politically, we must not act defeated, or down. We’re not victims; we are sons and daughters of the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords!