A God of Patterns

by William J. Stewart

When we consider the work of God, we can see time and again He uses and loves patterns. In every age it can be seen through the Scriptures that God supplied a blueprint for His people to follow.

In the creation sequence (Genesis 1:1-31), we can see a distinct pattern and intended design. God created in an order which was logical, both for the plant life which was made and for mankind. Continue reading

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Jesus’ Use of Humour

by William J. Stewart

Studying God’s word is a wonderful endeavour, which if undertaken honestly results in wondrous eternal benefit. Students of the word must approach it with a sober attitude, a diligent focus, and a determined volition. With these, there will be much profit, both in the present life and that which is to come.

The Lord conveyed the plan to redeem man through several means. He at times spoke in parables, revealing great spiritual truths through simple earthly stories. Other times, He was as blunt as could be, for example, the list of woes against the Pharisees and scribes (Matthew 23). Among other oratory skills, Jesus would occasionally use humour to teach His audience. Continue reading

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Following The Directions

by William J. Stewart

Advancements in technology have always impressed me. My first computer was an 80-88 made by Tandy. Suffice it to say, it is obsolete, a dinosaur compared to anything that anyone is using today.

I am equally astounded at how we get driving directions now compared to just a few years ago. At one time, we had a huge stack of road maps from various places in our car. That was replaced by the convenient and compact Rand McNally map book. Eventually a map program on my laptop was helpful in getting us from A to B. Digital maps! Then, an offline map sitting on Shelly’s lap was replaced with a 5-inch screen sitting on dash with vocal directions, real-time location, traffic updates, etc.. And now, with Google Maps on a cell phone, you have access to even more (construction zone info, gas prices, etc.). Continue reading

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The Order of Melchizedek

by William J. Stewart

In Genesis 14 this man appeared to Abram, blessed him, received a tithe in return, and then disappeared again. Though he made just a brief appearance, we shall find that he is an important individual in the Bible narrative. He is only mentioned in the Old Testament twice, but nine times in the New Testament.

Who Is Melchizedek?
Hebrews 7:1-3 identifies Melchizedek as the “king of righteousness, and then also king of Salem, meaning king of peace.” Continue reading

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Guardian Angels

by William J. Stewart

Take heed that you do not despise one of these little ones, for I say to you that in heaven their angels always see the face of My Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 18:10)

Jerome, in his commentary on Matthew 18:10, stated, “how great the dignity of the soul, since each one has from his birth an angel commissioned to guard it.” Is this so? Do we all have an angel assigned to us, who is watchful over us in this life? Continue reading

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One Face In Every Place

by William J. Stewart

There are a number of different circles which the Christian’s life intersects. In each setting, we are involved in relationships, whether it be with our brethren in the local church, as an employee or employer in the workplace, as a citizen in a community, as a friend or acquaintance in social circles, or as a husband (father), wife (mother), son or daughter in the family unit. Regardless which setting we are in, it ought to be our determined desire to show the same manner and conduct, walking upright as a child of God. Continue reading

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The Letter to the Laodiceans

by William J. Stewart

Colossians 4:16 reads, “…when this epistle is read among you, see that it is read also in the church of the Laodiceans, and that you likewise read the epistle from Laodicea.”

Have you ever wondered about the letter to Laodicea? Where is it? Why is it not in the Bible? There has been plenty of speculation about the Laodicean letter. If it is an inspired epistle that is missing, we have a problem! If it is an uninspired letter, why would Paul set it on par with the Colossian letter, which is in the canon of Scripture? Continue reading

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Enter Into His Gates

by William J. Stewart

The Psalms are filled with expressions of praise and thanksgiving before God. In some, we read about the troubles which the psalmist endured, and can see the transformation from a spirit of distress to one of trust and expectation of the grace of God. In the process of this lifting of the weight of trials, we consistently see the writer giving praise and thanksgiving to God. Yet other Psalms are for that sole purpose—to give thanks to the LORD and to praise His holy name. This is the manner of Psalm 100.

The Psalm is identified in the psalmist’s notation as “A Psalm of praise” (KJV) or “A Psalm of thanksgiving” (NKJV). Let us consider verse by verse this psalm of praise and thanksgiving. Continue reading

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Checking The Greek

by William J. Stewart

I’ve heard a good friend and fellow preacher say from time to time that he knows a little Greek. And then, the punch line comes, “He owns a great little restaurant down the street.” All joking aside, I know that he, like all preachers, would like to be more familiar with the Greek, the language that the New Testament was originally penned in.

My knowledge of Greek is quite limited. I know only a handful of words, and though I have a Greek New Testament, I cannot read it. I am thankful for tools such as Strong’s, Vine’s and Thayer’s. With these, even the unlearned are able to appreciate the significance of words in a text. To illustrate the benefit of checking the Greek, let us look at Jude 3, and see what extra insight the Greek gives us. Continue reading

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The Bible Said It First

by William J. Stewart

As noted in a recent sermon on Biblical illiteracy, people in general do not know the Bible very well, which is unfortunate, for it is the word of life. We need to present ourselves as diligent students of the Bible, for our soul is at stake.

Oddly enough, many folks quote the Bible without even knowing it. Several common phrases people say actually come from the Bible. Did you know the Bible said it first? Continue reading

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