Wausau Alliance Church

From the Blog

Abide in Me

“Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing… If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you” (John 15:4-5, 7). Does John 15 sound like a Utopian pipe dream? Do Jesus’ words seem to be…

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Questions

1 Corinthians 15:1-5 – “Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you—unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve.” When we say we are sharing the gospel with someone, how important is it that we share the…

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Love Your Neighbor As Yourself

“Now Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron, each took his censer and put fire in it and laid incense on it and offered unauthorized fire before the Lord, which he had not commanded them. And fire came out from before the Lord and consumed them, and they died before the Lord” (Leviticus 10:1-2). Leviticus is a fascinating book filled with many confusing laws, rituals, and stories. This story of God striking down Nadab and Abihu is one of those stories that leaves us a bit baffled. What is clear from Leviticus is that the holiness of God demands our…

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Who Are We?

“The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs – heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, provided we suffer with him in order that we may also be glorified with him” (Romans 8:16-17). “In all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us” (Romans 8:37). The two passages quoted above carry an incredible amount of theological depth and practical implication as followers of Christ. Yet somehow, for many, the power of these passages have become practically cliché for us. Of course I know that…

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All of Who We Are!

“So the church throughout all Judea and Galilee and Samaria had peace and was being built up. And walking in the fear of the Lord and in the comfort of the Holy Spirit, it multiplied” (Acts 9:31). What is a typical day in your life? What does a typical season in your life look like? What is the norm for you and your family? Consider the events of Acts 9. Acts 9:1-22 shows us the dramatic conversion of Saul. Previously he was a Pharisee seeking to murder Christians. Now, because of Jesus’ intervention, Saul is saved, walking in the Spirit,…

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Be Angry!

“Be angry and do not sin; do not let the sun go down on your anger, and give no opportunity to the devil” (Ephesians 4:26-27). Whenever we think of anger, we think of things like fits of rage, temper tantrums, loss of self-control, and a tailspin born out of selfish desires. When we think of being angry, we measure our understanding of anger against the standard that we know the best: humanity. This is where our fault lies. We have so many human examples of how anger brings forth sin that we cannot comprehend how anger could be handled righteously….

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Pray without Ceasing!

“Peter was kept in prison, but earnest prayer for him was made to God by the church” (Acts 12:5). God works through our prayer. This truth should transform us. If we truly lived our theology, we would walk differently in light of the fact that God works through our prayers. Consider this story in the book of Acts. In Acts 12, Herod the king sought to put an end to the spread of the Christian church, so he killed James, the brother of John, and he arrested Peter. This would be similar to the U.S. capturing and killing Osama Bin…

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Homesick for Heaven

Psalm 27:4 – “One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple.” As I read through the Psalms and I hear David declare truths about who God is and how God works for His people, I am struck by David’s cries in Psalm 27 where he is overcome by his enemies. They “assail” him to “eat up his flesh.” “False witnesses have risen against” David as…

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Sent Ones

“Jesus said to them again, ‘Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.’ And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit’” (John 20:21-22). As Jesus was sent by the Father to fulfill the mission of God, so did he send out the disciples to go and fulfill the mission of God. While we are not one of the original twelve disciples, we are the ones who follow Jesus as the disciples did. We are the ones who have turned from our sin…

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Joy Will Come in the Morning

Job 38:1-5 – “Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind and said: ‘Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge? Dress for action like a man; I will question you, and you make it known to me. Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding. Who determined its measurements – surely you know!’” If you have ever read Job, you know how God firmly puts Job in his place toward the end of the book. In a very direct way, God uses sarcasm to show that Job…

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Imago Dei

Genesis 1:26-27 – “God said, ‘Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.’ So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” Genesis 1 says humanity has been created in God’s image. The implications of the imago dei (image of God in Latin) within us are beyond what…

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Are You Genuinely Saved?

“Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many. For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few. Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will recognize them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? So, every healthy tree bears good fruit, but the diseased tree bears bad fruit. A healthy tree that does not…

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Christ Alone, Cornerstone

1 Peter 2:6-8 – “For it stands in Scripture: ‘Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious, and whoever believes in him will not be put to shame.’ So the honor is for you who believe, but for those who do not believe, ‘The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone,’ and ‘a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense.’ They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do.” What does it mean that Jesus is our cornerstone? David, Isaiah, Zechariah, Paul, and Peter all declare that Jesus…

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Fix Your Eyes On Jesus

2 Timothy 1:4-7 – “As I remember your tears, I long to see you, that I may be filled with joy. I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you as well. For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” In his book, “Spiritual Depression: Its Causes and…

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Hope No Matter What

“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness” (Lam. 3:22-23). This quotation is an example of a well-known Old Testament passage with a lesser-known context. The author doesn’t write these words after a military victory or following a worship service. He writes them in the midst of a woeful lament, mourning the destruction of Jerusalem. Lamentations may be the most depressing book in the entire Bible, and though hope is thin and disappearing, hope can still be found in a faithful God. His steadfast,…

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