Seek That Which Is Above, Not Below

by Pastor Hartley

Does sin have its foot in the door? Maybe even its broad shoulders? What sin is devouring your life? Is it the love of money? Is it a quest for pleasure? Is it fear of responsibility? Is it worry about the future? Is it the lust for excessive comfort? Maybe a very specific sin now […]

Anti-nomianism and Discipline

by Pastor Hartley

One benefit of reading church history is to discover the errors which once troubled the churches of Jesus Christ. When many honorable theologians and pastors take time to write about the same error, carefully refuting it, you know you have come upon something significant. Sometimes you even discover an error once so carefully exposed and […]

Thoughts on a New Year

by Pastor Hartley

As the new year rolls in it is always prudent to give consideration to what old thing we should leave behind and what new endeavor we should begin. A new year is an unmistakable providence. We cannot avoid it and we cannot avoid the questions it asks. What wicked old habit or pet sin will […]

Peace During the Chastening of the Father

by Pastor Hartley

The late puritan Thomas Brooks said, “We must measure afflictions by their outcome, not by how much they hurt.” For Brooks every day was a day lived under the Father’s hand, moved along through refining fires toward conformity to Christ. The chastising hand of the Father brought lovingly and delicately and deliberately measured discipline. Every […]

Preparation

by Pastor Hartley

How important is preparation to you?    How about preparation before a summer vacation?    How about preparation for a business meeting, especially with an important client?    How about preparation for a big dinner at your house, with out-of-town relatives?    In all these cases we are pretty serious about preparation. Who, on the […]

Living Now As Members of the Age to Come

by Pastor Hartley

“And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever. ” – 1 John 2:17 In light of that scripture consider a penetrating question from Charles Spurgeon: “If I had a brother who had been murdered, what would you think of me if I daily consorted with the […]

Views of the Lord’s Supper

by Pastor Hartley

One of the significant church controversies that developed during 16th century Protestant reformation was a question about the Supper. Specifically, In what way is Jesus Christ physically present when the church eats the bread and drinks the cup? The Roman Catholic error All of the Protestant churches were united in their rejection of the Roman […]

Press On To The Goal

by Pastor Hartley

In her deeply affecting book, Keep A Quiet Heart, the late Elisabeth Elliot tells the story of a childhood injury her father, Philip,  suffered at the threshold of his most vital years of youth: When my father was twelve years old he lost his left eye through disobedience. He had been forbidden to have firecrackers, […]

Discontentment

by Pastor Hartley

A great hindrance to your enjoyment of God is discontentment. To be discontent is to always be spinning your wheels in the soft mud of self-pity. To be discontent is to walk about in your work-a-day life with a constant fever, mind and heart burning up as you continually take inventory of things missing from […]

The Christian vs. Expressive Individualism

by Pastor Hartley

One challenge always present in the church is a low view of the church by the church itself. The church is often regarded as of secondary importance to the Christian life while our personal expressions of faith and obedience are regarded as of primary importance. Our default setting, because of sin, is to think our […]