Weekly Updates

Weekly Updates

Each week, our teaching pastor Bob Lepine offers his thoughts and perspective on how we live for Jesus in our world. In addition, the blog has updates on upcoming activities at Redeemer. You can receive the weekly blog as an email. Send us your email address to subscribe.

NOVEMBER 16, 2022

Dear Friends, Earlier today, Mary Ann forwarded this to me.  It’s from Shane Pruitt, a pastor, author and speaker who lives in Rockwall, Texas.  Want to change your worship experience at church? Pray before you get there.  Ask God to speak to you. Listen to worship music on the way. Take a Bible with you instead of relying on the screens. Don’t run late. Sing loudly, like you mean it. Take notes. Expect God to move.  I shared with you last week about Greg Atkinson, the man who has made…

NOVEMBER 9, 2022

Dear Friends, Greg Atkinson has an interesting ministry.  He’s a secret shopper for churches.  Your church can hire him, and either he or one of his trained associates will show up on a random Sunday morning as a visitor and provide you with feedback and a report card on how you can up your game with visitors. When asked about where churches need the most help, Greg cites four things.  He says most churches need to do a better job with their…

OCTOBER 26, 2022

Dear Friends, Yesterday, our mail included a handful of election related postcards.  This morning, I received a text message asking for money for a candidate in another state who “WITHIN TWO POINTS” in his race for public office.  My email inbox is filled with reminders of the upcoming election.  And of course, if I turn on the radio or cable news, the midterms are the top story. We still have two weeks to go before the votes are cast.  And no telling…

OCTOBER 19, 2022

Dear Friends, This is going to be a little longer than normal, so bear with me. All of us who live in Arkansas will be deciding in less than three weeks whether we think our state will be a better place to live if we legalize the recreational use of marijuana.  The question will appear on the ballot in Arkansas as Issue 4: The Marijuana Legalization Initiative.  If passed, it will make it legal for Arkansans over the age of 21 to possess…

OCTOBER 12,2022

Dear Friends, What are we to think about Abraham’s nephew, Lot? When you read about Lot in Genesis, most of what we read doesn’t put him in a very favorable light.  First, he and his uncle Abraham get sideways about land ownership and grazing rights.  Abraham allows lot to take his portion of the promised land, and Lot quickly snatches up what appears to be the most fertile parcel of real estate, without first seeking the Lord and with no…

October 5, 2022

Dear Friends, Every other year, the folks at Ligonier Ministries team up with LifeWay Research to conduct a State of Theology Survey.  In addition to assessing what Americans in general believe about God, sin, the Bible and salvation, they also look at how people who would affirm core theological beliefs answer the same questions. The results of the 2022 survey were released a few weeks ago.  I don’t imagine many of you will be shocked to know that most of our neighbors aren’t…

SEPTEMBER 21, 2022

Dear Friends, This morning’s Wall Street Journal had an interesting review of Rina Raphael’s new book “The Gospel of Wellness:  Gyms, Gurus and Goop and the False Promise of Self-Care” (the review is here, but it’s behind a paywall).    In the piece, Megan Cox Gurdon, who is a regular Journal contributor, agrees with the book’s author that the $4.4 trillion “Wellness Culture” industry is simply profiting from an observation G.K. Chesterton made years ago when he said that people who choose not…

SEPTEMBER 14, 2022

Dear Friends, Some of you know the name Tim Challies.  For the past 20 years, Tim has been blogging at his website www.challies.com.  After posting a few book reviews and some other articles on his website, Tim came to a point where he realized he either needed to stop altogether or take blogging more seriously.  He set a goal of posting every day for a year.  Before long, his hobby became his vocation.  Today, about a million people visit his blog each…

SEPTEMBER 7, 2022

Dear Friends, Jesus reserved his strongest words, His harshest rebukes, for the self-righteous Pharisees in His day.  At one point, when these legalists asked Jesus why His own disciples did not adhere to their regulations regarding hand washing, Jesus told them that they were the living embodiment of Isaiah’s prophecy in Isaiah 29:13.  “You hypocrites!” Jesus said.  “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you, when he said ‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in…

AUGUST 31, 2022

Dear Friends, Tonight was a big night for us at Redeemer.  Twenty-seven kids were loved on, poured into and prayed for as we kicked off our very first evening of Awana.  There were fun and games.    There were group times where they learned about the verses they will be memorizing. By the end of the evening, everyone headed hope excited about what God has planned for these precious children this year.  And maybe, Lord willing, more like them in the weeks ahead. I think what…

AUGUST 24, 2022

Dear Friends, Which have you spent more time doing this week:  Grumbling?  Or giving thanks? Let’s be honest.  We are people who easily become accustomed to and take for granted the blessings that we enjoy in life every day.  In fact, it doesn’t take long before a recuring blessing in our lives becomes an expectation, a requirement or a demand. Some of you are too young to know this, but back in the 1960’s, if you needed to open the driver’s side window…

AUGUST 17, 2022

Dear Friends, This weekend, Jimmy and Loraine Mosby will celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary.  They have known each other since they were in grade school, but didn’t start to date until the late 1960’s, when they were both enrolled at Arkansas Baptist College.  They began their life together as husband and wife just weeks after Loraine graduated from Philander Smith College in the spring of 1972. Looking back on their five decades of marriage, Loraine says “any couple who has a healthy marriage and…

AUGUST 10, 2022

Dear Friends, Obedience brings blessing. Is that true?  In your life?  Or to put it another way, have you ever found that sometimes, obedience can lead to adversity? Think for a minute when God called Abram to leave his home, his family and all he knew, and to go to an unknown place.  A land, God told him, “that I will show you.” Abram responded with faith.  He obeyed God.  When God called Abram out of Haran, he packed up his wife and his…

August 2, 2022

Dear Friends, You know you’re an apostle, right? I didn’t say Apostle.  I said apostle.  The punctuation matters here.  As I read the New Testament, I see Jesus regularly sending out those who follow him.  He sends them into cities and villages to share the good news of the Kingdom.  And of course, the last thing he tells us is that we are to “go.”  Go and make disciples.  The word apostle means “sent one.”  All who follow Jesus are sent.  So using my old high…

July 27, 2022

Dear Friends, There is an interesting story in Luke’s gospel that sounds like it could have happened two days ago somewhere in the US. In the account in Luke 9, we read that Jesus had “set his face to go to Jerusalem.”  This is the point in the gospel account where everything begins to point to the cross.  Jesus is on mission and will not be deterred. Luke says Jesus sent an advance team of disciples ahead of him into a Samaritan village…

JULY 13,2022

Dear Friends, You’ve seen the pictures, right?  I mean, wow. The gallery of images we’re getting from the Webb telescope is breathtaking.  We’ve seen similar images created by Hollywood special effects artists, but this is something completely different.  And along with the pictures are the numbers.  Astrophysicist Alex Filippenko of the University of California, Berkeley says that the images we’re seeing tell us that “there are between a hundred billion and a trillion galaxies in the observable part of our universe.”  Let that sink…

July 6, 2022

Dear Friends, It should not have taken anyone by surprise when almost two weeks ago, the US Supreme Court handed down its ruling in the Dodds v. Jackson Women’s Health case.  Court watchers paid careful attention last fall when the Justices heard the oral arguments in the case, noting then that the questions asked by the Justices foreshadowed either the end of the Roe v. Wade precedent altogether, or at the very least, new allowances for states to regulate abortion.  Then…

JUNE 29, 2022

Dear Friends, When I was seven years old, the President of the United States was assassinated.  I remember the Friday it happened.  We had come back to our second grade classroom right after lunch and recess and our teacher, Miss Clark, told us that she had to go to the Principal’s office for a few minutes.  She told us to stay in the classroom and that she would know if any of us left while she was gone.  I sat wondering…

JUNE 22, 2022

Dear Friends, First things first.  Go Omahogs!  Looks like they really want it this year.  Game time is 3 PM on Thursday. Now, onto weightier matters. As providence would have it, after three months of reciting the Lord’s Prayer in our Sunday morning worship services, and after looking at the Lord’s Prayer in Luke 11, along with the parable that follows it, this was on my Twitter feed on Monday morning this week.  Author and speaker Blair Linne posted it, along with the…

JUNE 15, 2022

Dear Friends, I know who you are.  Assuming you are in Christ, you are a saint.  According to James Montgomery Boice, Dr. Harry Ironside, who was pastor at Moody church in the 1920’s, used to travel many miles by train. On one of these trips, a four-day ride from the West Coast to his home in Chicago, Ironside found himself in the company of a party of nuns.  They saw him reading his Bible and began to have conversations with him, learning that…