Bible Basics Lesson 6: New Testament Organization (Part 1)
Pastor Carlos A. Morales • Jan 10
Defeating Depression Part 3
I grew up hearing that old adage, “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never harm me.” What a lie! The kids in school always made fun of me because I was from the country. They made fun of me because I didn’t know how to speak English at the time. Sometimes, my nickname was “A racial slur.”
November 02, 2022
Defeating Depression Part 2
Many times as Christians, we believe we should be “stronger than that.” Often from past teaching or from a lack of understanding, we are convinced that, as Christians, we should not come under the attack of depression or hopelessness. On the other hand, unbelievers sometimes feel as if they deserve to be in darkness because they don’t believe in a higher power or they are not “living right.” Sometimes we are embarrassed to talk about our feelings of sadness and despair and deep, deep depression. And to make matters worse, some of our Christian counterparts accuse us of not seeking God enough or of having sin in our life.
October 31, 2022
I remember the night that I literally gave up. I had been doing much better with the depression and my wrecked life. I assumed I was okay, but I was not. That night, I lost the desire to fight. Curling down into a fetal position, I felt the darkness sinking in. Tears spilled over each eyelid and fiercely rolled down my cheeks and neck. I felt tight in my chest like something heavy was pressing against it. “It’s too much,” I thought to myself. “It’s too much.” It seemed as if I was no longer breathing, and why should I try? It was better this way. Someone would find me in the morning. I would die a natural death, depressed and alone.
October 30, 2022
Mental health in the kingdom of God
Mental disorders are both common and disabling worldwide. They affect beliefs, emotions, identity, and relationships in such a way as to impact the very essence of the human experience. They are associated with stigma and prejudice, and they disproportionately affect those who are poor and those who belong to marginalized groups within society. Increasing attention has been given in recent years to the importance of spirituality for mental health, but in research, it is impossible to distinguish between spirituality and the psychological variables that it purports to influence. Those things that are identified as being the concerns of mental health professionals overlap significantly with the concerns of religion. This overlap is examined here in relationship to the Synoptic Gospel accounts of the mission, ministry, and teaching of Jesus. It is proposed that Jesus’ teaching on the kingdom of God was centrally concerned with things that we now consider to be the domain of mental health. For Christians, mental health may be understood as the ability to fulfill a vocation within the kingdom of God. A more critical theological understanding of mental health is needed to better inform the mission of the Church
October 29, 2022
What does it mean to be called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28)?
One of the most often quoted and deeply treasured New Testament Bible verses is Romans 8:28: “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them” (Romans 8:28, NLT).
August 10, 2022
The Telling Times
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, 2 fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3 Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. Hebrews 12:1-3
July 18, 2022
Do not let anyone hinder your walk
Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. Ephesians 6:11 For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Ephesians 6:12
July 14, 2022
OVERCOMERS With the Fruit of the Spirit
The first fruit of the Spirit to grow in our hearts is love — not our love, but the love of God! And it is this love that grows into our own ministry which is nothing more than human personality expressing the loving heart of God in Christ. The love of God is God’s love in me and reaching through me, it is not my love carried by the Holy Spirit, but me carrying His love. Thus, we shouldn't ask God to bless our concern for people, instead, we must catch God’s concern and let it express itself through our flawed humanity. Romans 5:5 tells us that “God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, who he has given us.” I must identify with what God is doing, not ask God to identify with what I am doing. That is a principle of ministry laid down in the New Testament. You and I, we mortals represent Him, but talk is cheap, and His love must come through laying down our lives not just opening our mouths. Christ’s death was His greatest achievement and God’s greatest act of love. Through it, the power of love conquered the love of power. It was no mistake, no misfortune, and no accident. Christ was not a martyred victim, but a mighty victor — our champion and God’s hero. Jesus came to “…work the works of God” and all His works are love works. God is love! You can’t stop the sun from shining and you can’t stop God from loving. The sun is for shining and God is for loving. The fruit of His love grows and blossoms in our hearts and through our lives as naturally as the sun shines. And as it does, He loves and reaches to desperate, deceived, and hopeless people through us. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Galatians 5:22-23 And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. Romans 5:5
June 29, 2022
The Problem with False Prophets, Then and Now
No one enjoys hearing bad news. In fact, some people dislike bad news so much that they will do anything to block it out. Enter ancient Israel around the early 600s/late 500s BC. They had a strong inkling that they would get taken over by the Babylonians, as many of their prophets, like Jeremiah and Ezekiel, more than hinted at their imminent ransack and capture of this global superpower. But Israel didn’t like receiving that bit of information. So they turned to people who had positive messages instead: the prophets who would say that Israel would enter a time of prosperity and wealth soon (Jeremiah 23:16). Many went as far as to claim from receiving visions or a divine word to prove their prophecies rang true.
June 18, 2022
What does it mean that God gave them up to worship the host of heaven Acts 7:42?
As Stephen is preaching his last sermon, he recalls a time in Israel’s history: “Then God turned and gave them up to worship the host of heaven” (Acts 7:42, NKJV). The NIV translates Stephen’s words as “But God turned away from them and gave them over to the worship of the sun, moon and stars.”
June 16, 2022
"How does God provide the way of escape from temptation (1 Corinthians 10:13)?"
No one is given a pass when it comes to temptation. What we are given as Christians is a way of escape. The apostle Paul taught believers not to be fearful when they face temptation because God will offer help and a way out for those who will look for it: “No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it” (1 Corinthians 10:13, ESV).
March 26, 2022
When Pastors hate other Pastors
If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. And if a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. And if Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but is coming to an end. Mark 3:24-26 I appeal to you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and create obstacles contrary to the doctrine that you have been taught; avoid them. For such persons do not serve our Lord Christ, but their own appetites, and by smooth talk and flattery they deceive the hearts of the naive. Romans 16:17-18
February 06, 2022
Bible Basics Lesson 7: New Testament Organization (Part 2)
Episodes with music are only available on Spotify.
LESSON OBJECTIVES Goals 1. For students to comprehend the organization and content of the New Testament books, from 1 Thessalonians to Revelation. 2. For students to recite the assigned books in the order in which they appear in the Bible 3. For students to enjoy learning the Truth about the Bible. Topics Word of God Scripture Memorization The New Testament books from 1 Thessalonians through Revelation
January 22, 2022
Bible Basics Lesson 6: New Testament Organization (Part 1)
LESSON OBJECTIVES Goals 1. For students to comprehend the organization and content of the New Testament books up to and including Colossians 2. For students to recite those books in the order in which they appear 3. For students to enjoy learning the Truth about the Bible Topics Word of God Scripture Memorization The books of the New Testament in order from Matthew up to and including Colossians
January 10, 2022
Bible Basics Lesson 5: Old Testament Organization (Part 2)
LESSON OBJECTIVES Goals 1. For students to comprehend the organization and content of the Old Testament Major and Minor Prophets 2. For students to be able to recite those books in the order in which they appear 3. For students to enjoy learning the Truth about the Bible Topics Word of God Scripture Memorization The books of the Old Testament in order from Isaiah through Malachi.
January 04, 2022
Bible Basics Lesson 4: Old Testament Organization (Part 1)
LESSON OBJECTIVES Goals 1. For students to understand the organization and content of the books of the Old Testament and its divisions of Law, History, and Poetry 2. To enable students to recite the books in order 3. For students to have fun learning the veracity of the Bible Topics Bible, Word Of God Scripture Memorization The books of the Old Testament in order from Genesis to Song of Solomon
January 04, 2022
What does it mean to test the spirits?
“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world” (1 John 4:1). In this verse believers are commanded to “test the spirits to see whether they are from God.” This same command is echoed in other parts of Scripture as well. For example, in 1 Thessalonians 5:20-21 we find Paul exhorting the Christians to not “despise prophecies, but test everything; hold fast what is good.”
December 23, 2021
Lesson 3: The Anatomy of the Bible
LESSON OBJECTIVES Goals 1. For students to learn the basic organization of the Bible 2. For students to love the way the Bible has been preserved for them 3. For students to commit to learning more basic facts about the Bible Topics Guidance, Prophecy, Truth, Word of God Scripture Memorization 2 Timothy 3:16-17
December 22, 2021
"What does the Bible teach about the Trinity?"
The most difficult thing about the Christian concept of the Trinity is that there is no way to perfectly and completely understand it. The Trinity is a concept that is impossible for any human being to fully understand, let alone explain. God is infinitely greater than we are; therefore, we should not expect to be able to fully understand Him. The Bible teaches that the Father is God, that Jesus is God, and that the Holy Spirit is God. The Bible also teaches that there is only one God. Though we can understand some facts about the relationship of the different Persons of the Trinity to one another, ultimately, it is incomprehensible to the human mind. However, this does not mean the Trinity is not true or that it is not based on the teachings of the Bible.
December 20, 2021
Rule of Engagement Prayer
The Rules of Engagement these declarations are made to ﬁght against spirits and not people. Show no mercy; take no hostages! As God’s oﬃcial legislator and law-enforcement agent: come in the name of the resurrected Jesus, whose I am and whom I serve, “that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord” (Phil. 2:10–11; see also Ps. 82).
December 16, 2021
Gates are mentioned often in Scripture, and gatekeepers were an important part of maintaining order in ancient societies. Gatekeepers were guards stationed for protection at various kinds of gates, wh
David and Samuel appointed 212 gatekeepers for “positions of trust” in guarding the temple of the Lord (1 Chronicles 9:22), and those so appointed rotated through week-long assignments (verse 25). Verses 26–29 speak of the four principal gatekeepers, “who . . . were entrusted with the responsibility for the rooms and treasuries in the house of God. They would spend the night stationed around the house of God, because they had to guard it; and they had charge of the key for opening it each morning. Some of them were in charge of the articles used in the temple service; they counted them when they were brought in and when they were taken out. Others were assigned to take care of the furnishings and all the other articles of the sanctuary, as well as the special flour and wine, and the olive oil, incense and spices.” Temple gatekeepers were in charge of who went in and who went out. They ensured order and reverence for God’s house.
December 15, 2021
Lesson 1: How Did We Get The Bible?
The Bible: God’s Words Turn in your Bibles to 2 Timothy 3:16. Who can read it for us? • What do you think that means, God-breathed (NIV)? (The Greek word used here only occurs this one time in the scriptures. It is a compound word, God and breath, that means inspired.) It’s important that we remember when we’re discussing the Bible, that it is God’s Words, not the words of man. For example, consider the people who wrote the Gospels—Matthew did not just sit down and write an account of the life and teachings of Jesus on his own. God, through the Holy Spirit, guided the process. That is one of the reasons why, for instance, that even though he probably never even met Luke, their accounts are so similar. The Bible: Man’s Influence That’s not to say that God just put all the people who contributed to the Scriptures in a trance and made their hands move. One of the unique features of the Bible is that regular people authored it. Unlike many Holy Books, such as the Muslim's Koran or The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints' Book of Mormon, multiple people wrote the Bible; in fact, approximately 40 different people wrote it
December 15, 2021