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Salt
Jesus calls His disciples "the salt of the earth." Do we know what He meant? Mike Ford explains the spiritual side of this common mineral compound.
 

Saved By Faith Alone?
Protestantism is based on Luther's insistance that Christians are saved by faith alone. But is the really true? Earl Henn explains that the Bible says this of justification, not salvation.
 

Scarcity Amid Plenty
The specter of famine has again crept into the public consciousness with spiking prices on many of the world's staple crops. Richard Ritenbaugh probes the multiple causes for the most recent food shortages and explains the link between them and the Third Seal of Revelation 6.
 

Scattering and Gathering: Images of History and Prophecy (Part One)
Scripture frequently employs pairs of opposites: good and evil, light and darkness, life and death. Another of these pairs is gathering and scattering, mutually exclusive actions that, though they cannot be done at the same time, can be accomplished at different times. Charles Whitaker contemplates the gathering God does to reverse the effects of calamity.
 

Scattering and Gathering: Images of History and Prophecy (Part Two)
Biblical prophecy shows God scattering His people as a punishment for their sins against Him. During the end time, it appears He will scatter them into small fragments, perhaps even down to individuals alone. Charles Whitaker studies the primarily Hebrew words whose meanings suggest a coming, extensive fragmentation of end-time Israelites. The good news is that God will ultimately regather the humbled remnant one by one.
 

Scratching Our Itches
The world's ways, ideas and attitudes naturally flow into the church over time. The question is, How well do we resist and/or reject them? Richard Ritenbaugh examines three areas that have crept into the modern church and wreaked havoc.
 

Searching for Israel (Part Eight): The Scattering of Ten-Tribed Israel
What happened to the Israelites after their captivity by Assyria? Charles Whitaker provides biblical evidence to show where they were driven and from where they will return. Includes the sidebar, "Deferred Promises are Not Forgotten Ones."
 

Searching for Israel (Part Eleven): Manasseh Found
Jacob's prophetic blessing of the sons of Joseph in Genesis 48 promises that Manasseh will be a great nation. Charles Whitaker provides evidence that points to one nation in today's world being the unmistakable fulfillment of this remarkable end-time prophecy.
 

Searching for Israel (Part Five): Solomon and the Divided Kingdom
As he aged, Solomon listened to his foreign wives and fell into idolatry. For this, Charles Whitaker shows, God divided his kingdom between Israel and Judah, but promised that a king of Judaic lineage will alway rule Israel—another search criterion in the quest to locate modern Israel.
 

Searching for Israel (Part Four): The Kingdom and the Key
The enigmatic symbol of the "key of David" appears twice in Scripture. Charles Whitaker examines this symbol, adding it to the criteria we need to find the descendants of Israel in our day.
 

Searching for Israel (Part Nine): The Migration of a Monarchy
Many clues to Israel's modern identity deal with the ruling line of David—and its Zerahite counterpart. Charles Whitaker pieces together and follows the biblical and historical evidence to add more proof to Israel's whereabouts today.
 

Searching for Israel (Part One): The Promises to the Faithful
Where is Israel among modern nations? Charles Whitaker begins a twelve-part series on the identity of modern Israel, using search criteria to point to the whereabouts of the "lost tribes." The first article deals with God's promises to the patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
 

Searching for Israel (Part Seven): Seven Years' Punishment
What happened to Israel after God sent her into captivity to the Assyrians? Did God turn from physical Israel and begin to work with spiritual Israel, the church? Charles Whitaker provides scriptural and historical evidence that Israel was not restored soon after her exile—in fact, God withheld His promised blessings from her for a very long time.
 

Searching for Israel (Part Six): Israel Is Fallen, Is Fallen
The northern tribes of Israel, having rejected Davidic rule, chose Jeroboam as their king, and he soon led the Northern Kingdom into apostasy. Charles Whitaker shows that after just over 200 years, Israel fell to Assyria, and it people were taken captive and transported to Media. Judah lasted about a century and a half longer, falling to Babylon in 585 BC.
 

Searching for Israel (Part Ten): Clues and Answers
Where is the house of Israel today? With all the search criteria assembled, Charles Whitaker first shows where Israel is not and then where the various tribes have settled on the modern map of the world. Finally, he expands on the whereabouts of Ephraim, that 'multitude of nations' God promised through Jacob (Genesis 48:19).
 

Searching for Israel (Part Three): The Old Covenant
Charles Whitaker continues the search for criteria to determine where the people of Israel are today. The covenant God made with Israel at Mount Sinai provides important clues to their whereabouts.
 

Searching for Israel (Part Twelve): The Sign
Though the search criteria for the whereabouts of Israel point to only one conclusion, most Israelites are blind to their origins. In this final installment of the series, Charles Whitaker deals with the question of why Israel has forgotten its identity.
 

Searching for Israel (Part Two): Blessings in Faith
The search for the descendants of ancient Israel continues with the look at the blessings God promises the patriarchs. Charles Whitaker examines the blessings granted to Jacob's sons as well as Joseph's sons, Ephraim and Manasseh.
 

Seeking God (Part One): Our Biggest Problem
It is a wonderful thing that God has called us out of this world and paid the penalty for our sins, but what happens next? After making the covenant with God, how does a person avoid backsliding as so many biblical examples show? John Ritenbaugh answers these questions by explaining what seeking God is really all about.
 

Seeking God (Part Two): A Foundation
Having a goal is a wonderful thing, but it is worthless without a plan for achieving it. John Ritenbaugh contends that Christians also need to have a conscious plan in seeking God, recommending several essential qualities that must be included in any successful course of action.
 

Separation and At-One-Ment
Throughout the generations, war has been mankind's solution to problems. Is there hope for the future? John Ritenbaugh gives the comforting answer: at-one-ment is possible with God!
 

Servant Leadership: Practical Meekness
Much has been said and written about leadership in the church in the past several years. David Maas writes that godly leadership is an outworking of the virtue of meekness.
 

Servant of God, Act II: God's Gift of Faith
The story of Ebed-Melech goes far beyond a historical vignette. Concluding his series, Charles Whitaker shows how the story is an allegory of God's grace to the Gentiles.
 

Servant of God, Act One: Going Around, Coming Around
A little-known character from the book of Jeremiah shares the stage with more well-known figures and teaches them a lesson we can learn from today.
 

Service: A Key to Spiritual Success
Have we lost the fire for God and His way that we we once had? If we have, we need to reconsider our basic commitments, and one of those is service. William Gray shows just how vital a key to success service is in all aspects of our lives.
 

Serving Through Prayer
Prayer is a constant and necessary part of being a Christian. But just how well do we pray? Are our prayers effective? Mark Schindler teaches us how we can learn to pray more effectively!
 

Setting Spiritual Goals
Business advisors and self-help books recommend that we set goals and make plans to succeed in our chosen areas of endeavor. Why do we not do this to help us overcome sin? There is a simple, easily remembered formula we can use to organize and prosecute the battle against our faults and weaknesses.
 

Sex, Sin and Marriage
Sexual topics and imagery are all around us, yet God covers the whole subject with His very terse and direct seventh commandment: You shall not commit adultery. Sex and marriage are God-given experiences that Christians need a proper perspective of, as this article shows.
 

Sharing Our Lives at the Feast
The Feast of Tabernacles is a wonderful gift God has given us to spend time with each other, really sharing of ourselves. Mark Schindler gives a few examples of how this can be done.
 

Sharpening Our Saws
God has provided us with the Sabbath for many reasons, but one of them is certainly as a time to sharpen our focus each week. William Gray shows that preparation is the key to getting the most out of the Sabbath.
 

Should a Christian Play Devil's Advocate?
We frequently use words and phrases whose meanings and origins are unknown to us. What is behind the phrase "Devil's Advocate"? Should Christians be engaged in taking the wicked one's side in anything?
 

Should Christians Handle Snakes?
Mark 16:18 says that Jesus' disciples "will take up serpents." Does this mean that Christians should handle snakes as a sign of their faith? Mike Ford argues that this is a mistaken belief—Jesus' words merely promise protection.
 

Should We Make Vows Today?
How should a Christian approach vowing? John Reid shows that, although not forbidden, making vows is a risky business.
 

Should We Obey the Laws of Our Government?
A great many Americans feel that they do not have to submit to the government. John Reid brings the Bible's viewpoint into this discusssion.
 

Should We Pray for the World?
Some in the church believe that Christians should not pray for those in the world because of a few verses in Jeremiah. However, the bulk of the Bible shows just the opposite! Only when God has determined He will not relent will prayers for them be ineffective.
 

Should We Stop Having Babies?
One of the "woes" Jesus pronounces in His Olivet Prophecy concerns those who have dependent children when the church must flee. Whether it is time to take action on this or not, it is a situation would-be parents need to consider.
 

Simplicity in Christ
The truth of God is simple, even some of the more complex doctrines are easily understood by those who truly seek God. We need to remember this principle when faced with doctrinal change.
 

Simplify Your Life!
Time—it marches relentlessly on, and we have only so much of it. Yet we waste a lot of it on foolish pursuits, procrastination and distractions. John Ritenbaugh explains how getting control of our time puts us in the driver's seat in our pursuit of God's Kingdom!
 

Sin Is Spiritual!
Many people divide sin into physical and spiritual sins, but the Bible clearly says that all sin is lawlessness! Richard Ritenbaugh explains I John 3:4 in its first-century, Gnostic context.
 

Sin, Christians, and the Fear of God
As everyone knows, Scripture takes a very dim and stern view of sin because it is failure to live up to God's standard and destroys relationships, especially our relationship with God. After identifying the types and levels of sin, John Ritenbaugh suggests that the fear of God provides us the necessary motivation to overcome our iniquities.
 

Sky Like Iron, Earth Like Bronze
Just about half of the continental United States suffers under severe drought conditions. And lack of water is not the only thing we need to worry about. Richard Ritenbaugh warns that such "acts of God" should make us take note.
 

Slavery and Babylon
Believe it or not, we are all affected by slavery, as human servitude comes in many forms: physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, economic, political, etc. Martin Collins exposes modern slavery in its many guises, comparing it to the Bible's depiction of Babylon the Great and its enslaving system.
 

Small, But Significant
Sometimes small things make big impacts. Such a small thing was Simon of Cyrene's carrying of Christ's cross. Do we in God's church today consider our "smallness" to be a blessing or a curse?
 

Smyrna: Faithful Until Death
The biblical city of Smyrna, whose church received one of Christ's seven letters in Revelation 2 and 3, may be one that Bible students know the least about. In explaining Jesus' message to this church, David Grabbe shows how the city's name helps to reveal the themes that the Head of the church wants us to understand as His return nears.
 

So You Plan to Keep Christmas Now?
Mike Ford takes a few stabs at Christmas trees, lights and Barbie dolls—all, believe it or not, traceable to pagan customs!
 

Sovereignty and Its Fruit: Part Ten
Once we accept God's sovereignty, it begins to produce certain virtues in us. John Ritenbaugh explains four of these byproducts of total submission to God.
 

Spiritual Double Agents
What is double-mindedness? David Maas explains that this harmful trait is analogous to being a double agent, serving two masters. As Christ says, one master will be neglected—and unfortunately, it is usually God.
 

Spotlight on Luke
Luke, the writer of the gospel of that name and the book of Acts, is more significant to the New Testament than it may first appear. Though he cast the spotlight on others like Christ and Paul, what we know of his life contains lessons we can use.
 

Stalked by Satan
Peter describes Satan as "like a roaring lion." What made him make this comparison? Mike Ford shows that Peter's choice of predator is a very apt analogy of our Adversary.
 

Standing Up for God
Standing up against the majority is never easy, but as Christians, we have been called to do just that. We need to grow in courage until we "are bold as a lion" (Proverbs 28:1)!
 

Staying With the Puck
A hockey puck changes direction almost constantly, and a hockey player has to move with it. Charles Whitaker uses this analogy to explain how we must follow God when He changes the focus of His work.
 

Stephen and the New Deal
Over the centuries, God has been disappointed by mankind over and over again. One man who did not disappoint was the deacon Stephen. Find out why he was so special.
 

Sticks and Stones
As members of God's church, what are we to do when destructive words come our way? Ted Bowling advises us not to take to heart everything people say. We must learn to take everything in our lives with much patience and longsuffering, which will result in peace.
 

Strange Women
Revelation 17 and 18 present us with two dominant "women" in the end time. David Grabbe, calling these wicked sisters "Miss Heresy" and "Miss Babyon," begins a series advising us how to avoid their snares.
 

Strange Women (Part Three)
The two strange women of Revelation 17 and 18 hold cups, trying to entice us to drink of their way of life. However, Christ urges us to drink of His cup. David Grabbe explains that we must choose one or the other.
 

Strange Women (Part Two)
Miss Heresy and Miss Babylon are hard at work to lure us away from what is good and right. David Grabbe shows from Proverbs 7 how God expects us to avoid their traps.
 

Striving for Balance
What is Christian balance? Some would say that it is, in essence, not being too far out of the mainstream. When it comes down to it, Christian balance means living up to God's standards!
 

Stuff
We live in a truly materialistic society. Everyone has a great deal of "stuff," all of our possessions, which we stockpile and safeguard jealously. Considering the process of spring cleaning, Mike Ford ponders our attachment to our stuff and the possibility of having to leave it all behind.
 

Swear Not at All!
Today's society is becoming increasingly insensitive and calloused to the base and profane words. This article examines this issue and gives suggestions for eliminating obscenities from our lives.
 

Swear Not!
Most people do not do much oath-taking these days, except perhaps when called to serve or testify in a court of law. John Reid shows that the New Testament strictly forbids oaths of any kind, as our word should always be honest and trustworthy.
 

Symbolism and Duality
This article tackles the issues of symbolism, duality and analogies in prophecy. These show that the Scripture was written for us and our admonition today!
 

Syncretismas!
Christmas is a very blatant form of syncretism, the melding of religious ideas and practices into one. Martin Collins explains some of the origins of Christmas and why these facts should cause us to reject this holiday.
 

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