Sermon series

Articles and Public Letters

Forgiving the Unforgivable

March 7, 2004

The man called me on the phone and said, “Pastor Ray, could I come see you?” Then he told me his story. “My wife left me for another man and when she got tired of him, she decided to come back to me. Everything seemed fine for a few weeks then she left me again […]

The Truth about the Passion Movie

March 3, 2004

To me the most satisfying part of the movie has nothing to do with violence. It comes when Jesus, already badly beaten, stands before Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor of Judea. As the curious, uncertain Pilate begins to question Jesus, two agendas immediately collide. To Pilate, Jesus is a problem that must be solved, an […]

Further Thoughts on “The Passion of the Christ”

March 2, 2004

Here are some answers to questions raised by the movie: 1) Why is Satan portrayed as a woman? Because it would not have worked for Mel Gibson to portray Satan in the pop culture stereotype with horns and a red cape. By using a woman with shaved eyebrows who never blinks (note that her eyes […]

Ground Zero

November 20, 2001

It was late Wednesday when we finally made it to Ground Zero in New York City. Our team of five men left Oak Park Sunday afternoon at 4 PM and drove through the night to High Point, North Carolina. From there we traveled to Washington, DC, then on to New York City. That’s a strange […]

What is Saving Faith?

September 5, 2001

The question, “What is saving faith?” is not as easily answered as one might assume. It is evident from reading the New Testament that not everyone who “believes” truly possesses saving faith. Jesus Himself warned in Matthew 7:21-23 that on the Day of Judgment many will claim to have worked miracles in his name, but […]

Professor Trainor’s Lesson in Theology 101

June 5, 1997

Recently my friend Ken Trainor ventured into the deep waters of theology in a discussion regarding bigotry and hatred, especially as it relates to the issue of homosexuality. Along the way Mr. Trainor (who is always delightfully provocative) made one statement that cries out for some close analysis. “God, it seems to me, almost certainly […]

From Temptation to Triumph

November 12, 1996

Playwright Oscar Wilde once jokingly remarked, “I can resist everything except temptation.” We smile when we read those words because they speak an important truth about the human condition. Temptation pays a visit to each of us every day and most of us struggle to say no. “Pastor Ray, what do I do when those […]

The Father Who Looked to the Future

October 9, 1996

All fathers must prepare for the day when they will be gone. No one likes to think of such things, and therefore most of us don’t think enough about what will happen after we die. Yet sooner or later every father must pass off the scene and leave his family behind. What will do you […]

It’s Okay Not to Know

March 29, 1996

So much of what we need to know can’t be learned quickly. Nor can it be learned in a classroom. The things that really matter are discovered only in the laboratory of life. Finding God’s will is often like that. As a pastor I am often asked questions about the will of God. I have […]

To Charlie Peacock

None – March 16, 1996

Re: Submission for Re:Think   "Why did he die?” As I pastor, I have been asked that question many times, frankly, have asked it myself on more than one occasion. But this time the question came from my brother, a urologist, who just watched one of his patients die from kidney disease. He was only […]

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